How To Discipline A Teenager Who Doesn’t Care About Consequences


Parents are always looking for ways to provide their kids with a proper upbringing so that their teens can play an active part in society when they grow up. When your little one grows older and reaches the point of puberty as a teenager, they start to develop an attitude. Most teens misbehave at this age, and it becomes very hard for their parents to discipline them.

At times like this, parents look for different strategies to improve their child’s attitude and make their kids learn that their actions have repercussions, which not only affect them but also the people around them. While doing so, many parents are worried that these discipline strategies may have a bad effect on the teen’s mental health.

Are you a parent looking for more tips on discipline strategies for your teen’s behavior? Are you trying to teach your teenager the repercussions of their actions? Are you thinking about how to discipline a teenager who doesn’t care about consequences? Are you wondering if these strategies are good for the teen or not? Then you do not need to brainstorm solutions as we are here to help you.

Most parents use different punishments as a discipline strategy when their teen breaks a rule. There are many punishments you can use to teach your child positive behavior, these include, making your teen wash the garage or yelling at a child for bad behavior, making them do extra chores, etc.

Many teenagers learn the significance of responsibility through this, as it helps them to understand that their actions have repercussions.

But if these punishments are not having a positive influence on your teen’s attitude, then there is no need to continue using those punishments. The best way to have a disciplined household is by lying down some family rules about attitude and communication.

Signs Of A Disrespectful Child

Raising a teen is a very hard and tiring job, which becomes more difficult when the teen starts misbehaving and becomes disrespectful. You need to deal with this as fast as possible so that this kind of bad behavior does not become a part of your teenager’s behavior and personality.

Most teenagers are rebellious, this kind of behavior at that age is very normal due to hormonal imbalances. But there is a difference between normal teenage behavior and unacceptable, disrespectful attitudes.

Following are some signs of a disrespectful child that may help you distinguish between normal teenage attitude to straight disrespect:

Does Not Help In Chores

Many children throw tantrums when asked to do chores, this is very normal, as most people are not big fans of washing clothes, doing the laundry, etc.

But well-behaved kids do understand that this is a responsibility that they need to fulfill. OIn the other hand, disrespectful kids refuse to do house chores, which shows a sign of extreme entitlement.

Power Struggle

You as a parent should be friendly with your teen to build a good relationship. But this does not mean that you should allow your teen to talk to you like an equal.

As this may lead to them thinking that they have the same amount of control or power over your family as you do.

This can also make them think that they can make their own decisions and have things their own way at school. Children that talk to their parents as peers are said to be disrespectful.

Says Rude Things

Though sibling rivalry is normal, if your kids go out of their way to say extremely rude things to their brothers or sisters, then you may need to find possible solutions or punishment for their bad behavior.

Though the above-mentioned things might be a sign of a disrespectful teen, keep in mind that your child may be suffering from a mental health disorder like major depression or conduct disorder, which can result in them behaving in such a way.

If you think that the case is then you may need to contact a medical professional before pursuing any self-control strategy. When dealing with such children, it is important to remain calm.

Understanding Behaviorism And Consequences

Behaviorism is a learning theory that believes that children learn by interacting with their environment. This means that if your kid has troubling behavior, you should ask yourself if this is due to the environment they see at home.

Try to view your household through your teen’s lens, this can help you understand what is provoking such poor behavior in your child.

Furthermore, you need to understand that every kid is different and has their temperaments. Being aware of your child’s personality can help you positively influence your teen.

Are You Even Setting The Right Consequences?

Consequences can be defined as the immediate response after a behavior, They are used to have a positive impact on the bad behavior of a teenager so that, in the future, these teens can grow up and play a positive part in society. On the bases of what type of response you want, repercussions can be the following:

  1. Positive: these are in response to the behavior you like and want your child to repeat.
  2. Negative: these are in response to the behavior you do not condone and don’t want your child to repeat.

Though using logical consequences can be a great way of improving your teenager’s behavior, you may find it hard to decide what kind of consequence might work best for your kid in specific situations.

Most parents feel guilty and often worry that they might go overboard with the repercussions. To avoid this it is very important to use appropriate repercussions for every situation. In addition, it is significant for you to use age-appropriate repercussions, which make sure that you are not being too harsh on your child.

The following are some consequences based on age:

  1. Infants and Toddlers: For infants doing things like bringing a little bit of sternness in your tone is enough for them to understand that what they did was wrong. While for toddlers you can add stuff like time out, during which you can put your child in a separate location and ignore them for a while to make them realize their mistake.
  2. Preschoolers and School-Age Children: For both of them taking away privileges is the best consequence. You can take away toys from preschoolers, and for school-age children, take away more impactful privileges.
  3. Teenagers: Best consequence for a teen nowadays is limiting their screen time or taking away their cell phones for a short time. This allows them to focus on their studies.

What Are The Right Consequences For Your Child’s Behavior?

The most important thing about a consequence is that it should teach something to your teen. For example, if your child makes a mess, then the consequence should be that they clean it up. Keep in mind that a consequence should never feel like a punishment.

A punishment is a way of showing authority, while a consequence is the exact opposite and allows a person to learn from their bad decisions.

The best way to improve a teen’s behavior is by using effective repercussions. An effective consequence is the type of consequence that is designed specifically to teach nice behavior.

These repercussions are said to be very clear and easy to understand. These effective consequences can be divided into the following categories:

Natural Consequences

Sometimes the best way to help a teenager is by letting them learn on their own through their experiences. This can help them get a grasp on how the consequences of their actions can result in certain situations.

This type of teaching can be done through natural consequences, in which there is no adult interference. There are many benefits of such repercussions as they teach your teen, independence, intrinsic motivation, and responsibility.

Logical Consequences

In this type of behavioral self-restraint, adult intervention is required. The goal of such a consequence is to help develop a sense of self-control along with the ability of internal understanding.

Logical repercussions can be of three types, namely, positive timeout, loss of privilege, and you break it you fix it. These types of repercussions should be applied right after the teenager misbehaves to show them that this is their own choice.

What Are The Punitive Consequences Especially Harmful To Teenagers?

Punitive Consequences Especially Harmful To Teenagers?

Punitive consequence does not allow the children to reflect on their actions instead makes them depend upon the outside world for direction. This type of consequence also makes the child seek validation from others. Punitive repercussions go hand in hand with punishments and hurt the mental and physical health of the teen.

Punitive punishment has adverse effects on a teen’s manner; it does not influence good behavior, does not promote conscience, increases the feeling of aggression in children, does not address the reason for misbehavior, damages relationships, creates a negative environment, etc.

Teens raised in such an environment are said to be socially inept, they have few friends, and most suffer from major depression, oppositional defiant disorder, and conduct disorder. In addition to this, These kids have a hard time managing their emotions.

7 Ways To Discipline Your Teenager To Teach Positive Behavior:

Many parents struggle to find ways to discipline a teenager. Without manners, a teenager can easily fall into bad habits that may stay a part of their whole lives. A teen can also develop a sense of restraint over their parents, which may lead to issues of power struggles in the household. To avoid this, you can use the following strategies:

Ground Them: Grounding is a very old technique used for misbehaving teens. If your teen seems to come home late from their friend’s house, then grounding them might work. This technique should only be used as a last resort.

Take Away Privileges: If your teenagers get poor grades or your kids misbehave, taking away privileges like their cell phone or not letting them play their favorite video game for the short term may help them focus.

Let Them Face Repercussions: Allow your teenagers to take responsibility for their wrongdoings. This allows them to learn that their actions have repercussions.

Befriend Them: Being your teen’s friend might help you build that good relationship and take a moment to have an insight into why your child behaves a certain way. But make sure that they treat you with respect.

Let Them Mend Things: Allow them to be the first one who comes up to talk to you after an argument and try to stay calm. This allows them to learn how their actions have an effect on people around them.

Your House Your Rules: Make it very clear that they need to follow your rules as they live under your roof. But making rules that don’t provoke the teen makes the most sense. You can set rules strict house rules like an earlier curfew, no cell phone while eating, etc.

Don’t Command: Teens are not a big fan of commands, being sweet with them might help you have a positive influence on them. But make sure that they know who has power over the household to avoid any kind of power struggle.

If you are still struggling with your child’s behavior after trying all of these then you may want to consult a medical professional who can help you understand if your child is struggling with medical issues like depression, anxiety, conduct disorder, oppositional defiant disorder, etc.

Understand That Discipline Means To Teach Not To Punish

As a parent the main point to focus on is that the purpose of disciplining a child is to make them learn, to teach them that doing wrong things will have bad repercussions.

Discipline does not mean punishing your child, punishments only lead to you and your child falling apart from one another. While punishment makes your child suffer, discipline makes sure that your child doesn’t make the same mistake going forward.


Parents find it very hard to discipline a minor and worry that their teenager may grow up with a bad personality. To avoid this, you can use many disciple strategies. One of which is making them realize the consequences of their actions.

You can discipline a teenager by logical consequences, in which adult intervention is required. On the other hand, you can also use effective repercussions that do not require adult involvement.

In addition, you can use techniques like grounding, taking away privileges, befriending them, etc. as a way of having a positive influence on your teen.

To improve your teen’s conduct, it is highly suggested not to use punishments, as they do not have a positive effect on the mental and physical health of a teen.

Stephanie Edenburgh

I'm Steph, a mom to 3 beautiful children and lover all things having to do with my family and being a mom. I've learned a lot raising my own children and working in education and healthcare roles throughout my career. Living in beautiful Southern California I enjoy documenting and writing about all of the hard work us mom's do on a daily basis.

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