Skip to main content Skip to bottom nav

Whenever I go home, my parents treat me like a teenager again - how can I stop this from happening?

159 Answers
Last Updated: 11/27/2020 at 4:08pm
1 Tip to Feel Better
United States
Moderated by

Sandra Butler, AOD, DV counselor

Drug & Alcohol Counselor

Experienced in understanding how emotions and feelings affect our lifes in every aspect of interacting, not just with others, but how we process those emotions. I can help you

Top Rated Answers
April 29th, 2018 12:00pm
A lot of parents do tend to still parent like you haven't aged but the best way to help stop them from doing that is by showing them you are an adult who can look after yourself. By showing them you're mature it will be harder for them to nit pick at you.
May 2nd, 2018 9:43am
Well, that's extremely hard because that's how they are used to perceiving you and behaving around you. The best way would be to, if it is really troubling you, go to group therapy. There are certain things that they think and feel which is the rout cause for their behavior such as perceiving you as clumsy, innocent, not capable of preforming certain actions etc. But you must talk to them and try to understand them and show them that you would like that they treat you a bit differently and that you will respond better to such treatment.
May 7th, 2018 7:34am
Talk to your parents about it. Express the way you feel. That way, they will understand you perfectly from your own point of view.
May 13th, 2018 3:41pm
That must be really frustrating! I wonder how often you're in contact with them? Perhaps they are not seeing everything you are now capable of, and not really understanding that your interests and needs are different from what they were when you still lived with them. Perhaps if you get in touch more frequently and keep them updated, they'll have a better understanding of the wonderful adult you've become.
June 6th, 2018 8:19pm
I think the best thing to do is talk to them. Show them that you're older and more responsible and discuss what is making you feel that way. A great way to do this is talk about boundaries.
June 9th, 2018 8:28pm
You can stop this by showing them that you can provide for yourself! For example, getting a job, paying bills, chores etc.
June 13th, 2018 12:43am
you need to simply explain to them, and try to show them that you aren't 16 anymore, give them a couple of examples why, make it visible that you do not enjoy the way you are being treated. but do it respectfully
June 21st, 2018 1:44am
You probably cant depending on your parents. You are their child and always will be. Just remind them you are an adult and take care of your own responsibilities. If you are leaning on them for to much support then you are setting yourself up to be treated like a teenager. If that doesn't apply, then maybe they are the way they are and except them for them, or don't.
June 27th, 2018 6:53pm
parents, while well-meaning, can often infantalize their kids. If you think its right, you can sit your parents down and have a serious conversation with them and let them know that as an adult, you feel like you should be considered as such.
July 1st, 2018 9:23pm
Talk to them tell them how you feel sometimes parents don't realize what there doing and how it makes you feel so talk to them and also it will show them that your mature if you talk about how you feel
July 14th, 2018 3:18pm
1) honest chats. let them know you are not a kid anymore. 2) SHOW actions like you are not a kid anymore (do your own laundry) 3) allow them to love you but tell them gently you are not a kid anymore.
July 28th, 2018 2:49pm
Try to talk to your parents and explain them that you don't like the way they treat you and why you don't like that
August 1st, 2018 2:33am
Have an honest conversation with your parents, use "I-statements" explaining how you feel about what is occurring. Analyze what you want to talk about in advance so you can feel prepared to have the discussion, and remain calm when you talk to them. They may not feel ready to let go of their "baby" even though you've grown up.
August 12th, 2018 5:50pm
feeling like your parents treat you like a teenager is difficult because they still feel as you get a little older they still see you as younger than you are because that is how they have always treated you maybe and they don't want to change what they already treated you like. you may have to tell them that they are treating you a little younger than you wish they would
August 24th, 2018 4:13pm
Good communication is key, have an open and honest conversation with them and explain how their treatment of you is making you feel. Often we do not understand that we are doing something to cause hurt or upset to others until they tell us. However our actions and behaviours often effect how another person treats us. For example if you are acting like a teenager, they are going to treat you like one so also be mindful in how you are behaving too. Also explain to them the consequence of their actions if they do not listen, for example you may not feel like you want to visit them anymore.
September 5th, 2018 4:04am
By being an adult. Explain to them that you're no longer a child, you're an adult and that you have your own life now. It's not an easy thing to do. Many people fear upsetting their parents but it's all just a matter of respect. Explain that you don't appreciate being spoken down to like a child and you want a mutual respect. If they can't accept that, then it may be an entirely different matter. If you don't tell them, they won't know that it upsets you. It won't change until you make it clear and you may need to risk emotion for it. Remember to be respectful and avoid coming accross as rude.
October 13th, 2018 10:07pm
Speak to them about it! Unless they know how you feel they won’t know to stop, or in most cases that they’re even in the wrong. In any situation similar to this you must discuss how you feel. You cannot expect change unless you know for sure others are aware of their mistakes and how they’re making you feel. As I said, they may not even be aware they still treat you like a teenager, but simply treat you like that because you’re still their child and they don’t know any different. If they never had to treat you like an adult when you lived there, they wouldn’t know how to treat you any other way.
November 7th, 2018 10:05am
Our parents always want to see us as kids, or as teens who haven't grown up. A good way to approach a problem with your parents is by talking it out with them and understanding why they treat you like this and give yourself a chance to share how you feel with them. Parents generally just worry about us or want the best for us. Their "experience and wisdom" (derived through age) sometimes feels more accurate than what we're doing or want to do. They may want the best for us, but it doesn't always mean they know what's best. Try looking at your life using their advice, or whatever they have to say. At least understand them and what they're saying, but overcome this barrier by making sure you grow up and be a productive adult.
November 22nd, 2018 6:24pm
In your parent's eyes, they see you as their child that they have reared and bought up. I am presuming you have moved out and they miss you very much. When you come home, they are glad to see you and want to show you their love. However, this can sometimes mean they come across as treating you as a child, even though you're not. To attempt to prevent this, you must speak to your parents about this. Let them know how it makes you feel, and that perhaps you do not enjoy these visits and perhaps do not look forward to visiting your parents. They need to understand you are an independent adult, and are willing to accept and listen to their advice, but do not need to instruct you and tell you what to do.
December 4th, 2018 9:02pm
To our parents, we will always be a child, no matter our age. Even if you are a mature person, your parents may still worry that you are not eating well, not wearing warm enough clothes in the winter, not hanging out with the right people, or not fulfilling your dreams. As your parent’s child, you may automatically respond to these worries with the same frustration and defensiveness you experienced when you were a child trying to establish your independence. This type of regression is often self-reinforcing — in other words, your parent says or does something that reminds you of your childhood struggle for independence, inducing stress; you then respond as you did as a child; and your parent, in turn, treats you like you’re still a bratty teen.
January 2nd, 2019 9:44pm
Try and talk to them. Tell them that you have grown up and that are want to figure out your life by yourself. Tell them that you got this and that even if you make a mistake you can learn from it. It is very important to make that clear to them, because they will just assume that you are not growing up or cant take care of yourself if you dont show them that you are capable of caring for yourself. You will always be small or a nagging teenager to them. try and tell them otherwise. :D
January 12th, 2019 12:30pm
You've to start acting like a grown up. I know many parents treat us like teenagers because they are just too worried about our safety and they maybe don't think that we are ready to handle all our problems on our own. So to prevent it, you can talk to them about how you feel when they do behave like that with you. If you don't want to directly talk, you can give hints like when they treat you like teenager, you say I m grown up and Now I know to handle problems on my own so don't stress your mind too much. This way you won't hurt them also and you will get your work done.. Hope it helped
January 23rd, 2019 1:37am
Don't be afraid to talk to your parents about how you are feeling. They are not mind readers. You have to make it known to them. If at any point when you go home you feel as if they are treating you like a child or teen, make an effort to bring it up to them. But you have to be mature about it. Don't go complain. It only gives them more of a reason to treat you as a teenager. Instead, approach it with a mature manner. Be respectful toward them throughout the whole conversation, no matter how they treat you.
February 16th, 2019 1:04am
Try to openly and honestly talk to them! Have a conversation! Tell them what you think is going on, why it’s bothering you, and how it would be better for you! Try to be respectful, and coming from a place of love and understanding. Keep in mind that your parents just want you to be happy and safe. Maybe ask them about their own youth, parents or how they grew up and became independant and mature. tell them what you need from them, and ask them what they need from you! Just be honest, try to be nice! Your parents truly do mean well.
February 17th, 2019 5:35pm
Independence is a joyous thing, and bringing it into the family home requires new boundaries to be set, as your relationship with your parents matures. You have hopefully transformed your personality from either a) A child to a teenager, or b) a teenager to an adult! Either case, your parents actions or reactions are always outside of your circle of control. However, you can still influence their actions with how you act and how YOU respond to what they have to say or how they treat you. Of course, in the end, this all boils down to responsibility, and respect. All good parents want to see their kids living a successful, happy life, and it can be very challenging for them to feel that you are headed in that direction if you a) don't return their love and affection b) don't spend time with them, or c) ask for favors and use them as a crutch to get your life in order. Just a few examples, so don't take any of this too seriously if it's not true for you.
March 29th, 2019 5:07pm
If you are a teenager- take their advice and see what they mean. Ask for clarity, what if they actually are trying to help you better? Ask questions! If you are an adult with your own life - then be open with them. Tell them exactly how you feel. Don't argue and be respectful. Try to listen to their side of the explanation as well. Maybe they have something behind their reasoning. You're a smart individual, take the time to thoroughly listen to their side of the reasoning. Don't interrupt and try to hear them out. They mean the best, they really do.
April 21st, 2019 7:28am
You are the expert of your family. You could try to explain to them how you are feeling, and see where that leads. Tell them that you are frustrated with how you are being treated, and work with them on how to make the situation better for everyone. Listen to their side of the story. They may feel worried for you, and just want you to be safe and okay. They are your family, and they love you. I hope you find peace with what’s going on, and i hope that everything works out for the better. treat yourself with kindness.
April 28th, 2019 8:52pm
First of all this is a hard pill to swallow but stop acting like one! What I mean by that is do you automatically refer back to child mode when you walk in or do you give them respect as an adult? To your parents you will always be their child but your needs have changed, in order to make change you need to talk to them and let them know how the way they treat you makes you feel and own it! Have a discussion in a calm respectful way as they may think they are doing good and may not mean to belittle you! Good Luck x
June 21st, 2019 7:59pm
Setting boundaries is very important in relationships, even with parents. As an adult they need to know what is acceptable behaviour and what is not. Be clear to them about what you want. Asking for certain behaviours to change isn't having an attitude or being rude, it's called being assertive. Parents can be pushy, and sometimes they may still feel that need to baby and protect their children (even when they're adults). Communication is key. Maybe you could phrase certain things in a way, or offer compromises I.e "Im happy to do this for you, but I would also appreciate it if you did this for me in return. Is that OK?"
July 5th, 2019 11:48pm
I know this situation from personal experience very well. In my opinion there is the option to do something that will show your parents how you have developed in a sense where you look at your own daily actions to analyze what might make them think you are acting like a teen, or if you really want to bring your point across there's always the option to just talk to them about this issue. You don't have to hold things like this in. In a good family relationship, actually relationships as a whole, talking about things that bother you is very important.