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Mom Minute Monday: How to stay connected to your teen

In our series, 'Mom Minute Monday,' we take topics that matter to you to the experts. Today: How to stay connected to your teen during the pandemic.

CLEVELAND — Navigating this pandemic as an adult is hard enough, but what about for teenagers?

3News' Hollie Strano talked to University Hospitals pediatric psychologist Dr. Carolyn Landis about how to stay connected with your teen, during this challenging time.

"Sometimes with a teen it's hard, you know they want to talk to friends as opposed to a parent," says Hollie. "How would you sort of go into that opening up conversation?"

"I really think it's about a series of conversations, it's not just one conversation. Let them know that you're there,"says Dr. Landis.

She also says, there's no ‘right way’ to do things -- and everybody's situation is different.

One thing you can do is acknowledge the things your teen is doing that are especially helpful right now.

"Talk about the sacrifices your teen is making, like, 'I am so grateful that you are tolerating not going out with your friends as much. Or tolerating some of these restrictions that you've given. Or tolerating virtual school, when you really wanted to see people in person.'"

Dr. Landis says it’s also important to listen to your teen, to see if there’s something you as a parent can do to help make this unprecedented time a little easier.

"We just want to talk to our teen and say, 'I'm here for you, let me know how it's going, what can i do to make it better for you.'"

Another point the doctor makes, is that just because you are ready to have a conversation with your teen, it doesn't mean they are ready.

When they are ready, she suggests really taking the time to listen to them, even if it means dropping whatever else you're doing.

"Now is the time to really communicate and listen," says Dr. Landis. "Not just talk talk talk, but listen listen listen."