Teenage breakup is difficult. There is not a lot teenage breakup advice for parents out there to help parents be in it with their teenager while not losing themselves in their pain. Regardless of our children’s age, we feel their pain and heartache is one of the worse ones. When they’re little, we can put a band-aid on a boo boo, hug them, and give them ice cream to make it all better but it’s a little different when they’re a teenager, or is it?
It may not be as different as we imagine. There are some tips we can take from those times when they’re were little to help our teen now. Sad love songs on replay, hunched over posture, there are many signs a teen is going through a breakup. Now I personally know many adults who would throw themselves out of any room and screech their car down the street once one emotional teen walks through the door, but if we don’t address their heart issues then someone else will.
That person will have access to their heart, their mind, and eventually whatever else they want.
I want to thank you for being here because it means you truly do care and want to help your teen. We are called as parents or anyone who has a teen in their life to be what they need in these moments. These are the moments that count. These are the moments they will either feel affirmed or denied in love outside of a dating relationship. It’s important to have Godly teenage breakup advice for parents handy because we never know when it’s going to hit. When it does hit, we want to be prepared, encouraged, and find hope.
Many of us have gone through heart break and have survived. The advantage to have gone through this stage is that we have the gift of knowledge and understanding we can pass down to our teens, but they won’t get this knowledge and understanding if we stay silent. You may say, “They won’t listen to me!” Here is another article to help you in communicating with your teen, click HERE: “How to Talk with Your Teenager: 6 Ways to Deal with Teenage Communication Problems.”
There is life on the other side of this tunnel of grief. However, if we don’t help teens realize this, then often times they will never know that life does go on or end up with severe consequences. I pray this teenage breakup advice for parents will help you and your teen journey through this season.
If you need some book suggestions for biblical advice on parenting teens, click HERE: “12 Best Christian Parenting Books: Parenting Teens and Tweens.”
7 Ways to Help Your Teen Heal from a Broken Heart | Teenage Breakup Advice for Parents
1) Acknowledge the pain-
When our kids were little and they came to us with a boo boo, we attended to it. We acknowledged them. There’s nothing worse than walking around your house bleeding and no one cares to notice. Adults tend to think that by ignoring their teenager’s heart break this will help it go away when in actuality it will stay around longer if not addressed.
We are called to be imitators of Christ. Teenagers want to be noticed and they want to know someone cares.
The enemy would love nothing more than to isolate your teen with their feelings with no truth to help them separate fact from fiction. We all go through stuff and have gone through heart break. Isn’t it easier when people help guide you through it? Help support you? I’m sure we all have that one person we turn to during these times.
Teenagers are no different. They need someone and that someone is you. We are their comfort, love, and security. One thing I noticed in serving Youth Ministry for over a decade is that teenagers always want their parents first. If they don’t get them, they will default to someone else, but they prefer their parents. Parents are still the number one influence in their lives!
You may be reading this and thinking to yourself, “Man, I really messed this one up. I have completely ignored my teen and XYZ happened or is happening.” If you find yourself going down this thought process, don’t go that route because it won’t help. What was done or not done is in the past. Take a hold of the present and future now. What will help is communicating your mistake to them. Even if the situation is over, you can still take the time to apologize for that moment and tell them how you will do better next time or if there is anything you can do now.
2) Affirm their feelings-
One thing we don’t want to do is deny their feelings. It’s so easy from our end to say, “You don’t know what love is!” or “It’s just puppy love!” However, when we do that, it shuts them down from sharing. Ultimately, you’re denying what they are feeing which will bring them to the point of, “No one understands me!” Then they will try to find those who do.
You may not understand or you may have forgotten how painful heartache is when you’re young and in love.It is not our job to tell them how to feel but it is part of our job to help them process those feelings they do have. Click To Tweet
Teens need to feel understood and sometimes that is just listening. How many times have our little ones come up with their strong feelings and we need to affirm their feelings. Oftentimes the quicker we affirm what they are feeling, they are free to move forward. It’s the same with teenagers and it’s even the same for adults. We are not built to keep things stuffed inside. Otherwise, many of us have experience what it looks like when it comes bursting out.
3) Let them talk about it-
This may seem redundant but you may acknowledge their pain but not affirm their feelings. You may affirm their feelings but not let them talk about it. Sometimes we want them to forget about it and move on because it’s easy, for US. How many times has that helped us when we were grieving? Heartbreak is a hard process to go through and we never know what kind of dance it will have us performing.
Part of healing is talking, so let them.
Help them process what they are feeling by listening to what they are saying. Combat lies with truth, encourage, give suggestions, pray, and wash them with scripture. We will only know what’s going on in their mind by listening to them talk. If we silence them every time they open their mouth, we are not acknowledging them or affirming. We are simply ignoring.
We may not know just how deep their relationship became or what kind of behavior happened during it. These are oftentimes of confession. We may need to walk them through deliverance, seek counsel, or figure out whatever direction the Lord may have you go for their full healing and restoration.
I know there are times where we would rather not know, but that is not what God has called us to. If someone is in sin, we are called to help them out of it. If we pretend like we don’t know or avoid knowing, then we are leaving our teenager in the hands of the enemy and the world, those that the enemy has deceived, to provide them with direction. You also must ask the Lord for help and wisdom at any point of talking with them. It’s not easy hearing about what your teenager may have done. We need help! He WILL provide it to you.
For advice on how to talk to them about sex, actually how NOT to, then click HERE: “Teaching Purity to Youth | 6 Truths on What NOT to do When Speaking to Your Teen about Sex.”
4) Distract them-
When our little ones had boo boos, we often will give them ice cream, offer extra snuggle time, or maybe watch a movie together. There was a reason behind the distraction. We wanted to take their focus off their pain and onto other greater things beyond it.
“Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.” (Philip. 4:8)
Obviously, there is balance in this process too which of course calls for God’s wisdom. We want to affirm, acknowledge, let them talk it out, but we also want to make sure it doesn’t become their WHOLE world because it is not healthy.
How do I know when to step in?
Questions like these are why it’s so important to know these tips in teenage breakup advice for parents because we may not know what to look for!
If you find them listening to the same album 30 times in the last 24 hours, are completely obsessing over it by circling conversation when you’ve already provided sound advice, won’t stop calling or trying to get in touch with their ex, then it’s time to take action.
Again, by refocusing them it will help them see beyond their pain and hopefully start enjoying life again. Shut off the music, take away their phone, open the curtains, let fresh air in, or change their environment by asking them to take a walk with you outside, go out to a lake, or do something fun outside of the house.
They might even fight you on it or scream that you don’t understand. However, you are still the parent and authority in their life. Calmly remind them of their place and your love for them, but also your responsibility over their overall health including mental.
Sometimes a strong word will help bring them back into focus as long as it is done with love and respect.
Give them a time limit if it helps and then extend the time limit little by little. For instance, you can say, “Hey I need you to come out with me for about 20 minutes, we will be right back.” Then the next day, push it to an hour.
“Rather, speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ, from whom the whole body, joined and held together by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love.” (Eph. 4:15-16)
Give them a time limit if it helps and then extend the time limit little by little. For instance, you can say, “Hey I need you to come out with me for about 20 minutes, we will back before you know it.” Then the next day, push it to forty-five minutes to an hour.
Distraction is important in showing them how there is life outside of their circumstances. There are still good things even though their heart is breaking. For more information on how to help your teen look towards their future, click HERE: “Teenage Goal Setting: 7 Christian Parenting Tips.”
5) Let them cry-
Just a heads up, you may end up taking that walk, eating that ice cream, or watching that movie when out of nowhere tears start to well up in their eyes.
Let them cry!
If the Lord cares about our tears, we should care about their tears too. Again, we are imitators of Christ. When we show them mercy and compassion, we are giving them what God gives us. Be proactive and bring tissues with you. Remember, this is a grieving process and everything may seem fine one second and the next second they are sobbing on your lap. It’s okay! I rather have a crying teenager than one who is numb and emotionless because it means they are processing and healing.
Healing doesn’t always look pretty but it’s so necessary.
Again, there is always a healthy balance we will look for. If your teen has been crying for days on end, they can’t get up from bed, they are suicidal, then this is not healthy and you may need to seek extra help from Christian counselors, Pastors, or leaders. If you’re waiting for people to get back to you in helping your teen, go back to praying, washing them in the Word of God, laying hands on them, fasting, and whatever else the Lord is calling you to do.
“Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their toil. For if they fall, one will lift up his fellow. But woe to him who is alone when he falls and has not another to lift him up! Again, if two lie together, they keep warm, but how can one keep warm alone? And though a man might prevail against one who is alone, two will withstand him—a threefold cord is not quickly broken.” (Eccl. 4:9-12)
Ask your community to help you pray because sometimes it can feel too much. If you don’t have a Godly, safe, and healthy community, ask the Lord to help you. Ask Him to bring the right people, ask Him to show you the right people, and ask Him for patience as you wait.“Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.” (Heb. 4:16) Click To Tweet
One thing we have and can be assured of, is access to the heavenly authorities through the power of Jesus Christ. God WILL supply everything we need. Just ask.
6) Pray for them-
There is power in prayer! This is the most vital tip in teenage breakup advice for parents. You praying for them, teaching them how to pray, having others praying for them, anointing them with Holy oil, fasting, and laying hands on them for the purpose of prayer. The beautiful mystery behind the power of prayer always leaves me in awe. God is faithful and how He responds still amazes me.
The scripture says to not only pray but to be watchful in thanksgiving. This means you are looking, observing, and waiting to see God’s response in it, thanking Him along the way because every second we spend in God’s presence something HAS to shift. We are thanking Him for what He is doing even if we don’t see it yet. We thank Him for Who He is. When we are busy worshipping, praying, and praising His Name, walls are being broken down, demonic assignments are being broken off, generational curses are stopped, and so much more. The enemy has to flee!
Sometimes we forget spiritual warfare is involved. The reality of that is we are fighting an enemy who wants our teenagers and the younger generation taken out. One of the main ways is through a broken heart.
We are called not just as parents but also as co-heirs in Christ, warriors for our brothers and sisters in Christ (yes this includes our teens and the younger generation), and as God’s ambassadors to fight in the spiritual realm when they are down.
Prayer is our weapon. Use it consistently and confidently!
I have witnessed dozens of teens over the years be set free from heartbreak, addictions, past hurts, sexual sin, cutting, suicidal thoughts, and many other issues that plague our teens and the younger generation today through prayer. Even when it seemed like all hope was lost, God would come through in miraculous ways!
Pray! Pray! Pray some more!
7) Remind them of who they are-
Teenage breakups are a blow to one’s pride and identity. After a breakup, they can feel embarrassed, alone, and maybe even ridiculed by their peers. Teens often lose themselves in these relationships and when this person is gone, they end up feeling lost. They may lose friends and activities they enjoyed. It is here we must remind them of God’s truth.
Their identity comes first in Christ and not anyone or anything on this earth.
“If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth.” (Col. 3:1-2)
I know it sounds easier said than done, but this is when you practice washing your teenager with the Word of God. Keep speaking scripture over your teenage until something shifts in this area. This is easier for those teens who do have a relationship with Christ. However, if your teen does not have a relationship with Jesus Christ, then this is the time to hone in and disciple them.“From the ends of the earth I call to you, I call as my heart grows faint; lead me to the rock that is higher than I.” (Psalm 61:2) Click To Tweet
Our job, not only as parents or whatever title you hold in a teenager’s life, is to point them to Jesus Christ. There they will find new life, new hope, strength, and purpose. As a youth leader, I remember when I would try to use my own “wisdom” to help teens deal with issues only to realize the only words that hold significant life changing weight are the ones found in the bible.
So, remind them of who they are and WHOSE they are.
I pray this teenage breakup advice for parents were a help you in supporting your teen overcome a broken heart. Broken hearts are no fun for anyone but it is a time where you and your teen can connect or reconnect both with each other and with God in new and exciting ways. Pour your love into them and even when it feels as if you’re running on empty remember your God will supply all your needs. Call out to Him. You are His child too.
Baskets of Blessings,