How to open up to your parents

POV: One day, you're sharing about your first period with your mom. The next? Struggling to tell her about your first real S.O. or your dream (but unexpected!) career path. 

Opening up to your parents can get, well, a little more difficult as time goes on. Things suddenly become just a tad more *real*—aka your biggest secret isn't stealing a piece of leftover b-day cake anymore. But don't let growing up stop you from leaning on their shoulders when you need support.

As time passes, it's only natural for things to change (and for us to adapt to them). Still feeling uncertain? Presenting our guide to opening up to your parents. 

Eliminate the confrontation factor

No matter how big or small, any news that you break to your parents can be anxiety-inducing. We get it—you're sitting right across from them at the kitchen table, but all you want to do is crawl back to your room. 

Try to create a comfortable setting where you feel ready to share what's on your mind. You can make the situation less confrontational by changing your surroundings. For example, talking in the car on your way to school or family dinner is a great option because it feels more casual (and let's be fr, it's so much easier when you're both facing forward). 

Turn the tables

Don't think of opening up as flying solo—it's not a presentation, after all. Asking parents about their own lives or for advice is a great way to not only get insight, but also to provide a chance for your parents to open up and bond with you! Starting the conversation with a simple question about *them* might just be the first step you need to take. 

Think of it like this: If you're unsure about how to handle your relationship probs, try asking your parents about their teenage relationship experiences. It's a straightforward question that sets up the conversation you want to have. Chances are, you'll learn something worthwhile!

Make it a bonding activity

"Opening up" sounds like something kinda serious and scary. Spoiler alert: It doesn't have to be.

It can be as simple as a chat over a cutesy brunch, shopping trip or grocery run. Our advice? Make it fun. After all, who could turn down a conversation over a mini fashion show in the fitting room?

When you're facing tougher topics—if you're having mental health struggles or dealing with overwhelming friend probs at school, for example—a sit-down, face-to-face talk seems like the right move. If you anticipate your convo being more lowkey (i.e. you need some 'ship tips or want to tell them about your latest artistic passion), then something more casual could do the trick. 

Need more life advice? Follow us on Instagram @girlslifemag!

Check out these posts for more fam content:
💕 5 fictional mother-daughter duos that will make you want to go hug your mom
💕 How to make a family group chat you actually want to text in
💕 How to get closer to your siblings

Slider and top image: @mamamiamovie


by Anne Chen | 4/30/2024