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Being a teenager is not easy, there are so many changes taking place and so much to figure out, that it’s no wonder they are often so confused. Making things even more confusing, is that teens tend to understand life based on what they see at school, in their friend groups and on television.

Teenagers can be complex. My teenage daughter was so kind and quiet that I really didn’t know that she was experiencing so much turmoil within. When she finally opened up to me, I began to realize that the way she saw the world wasn’t an accurate depiction. She had picked up so much self-doubt that was rooted in misunderstandings. And it got me thinking: how much of the world around them are they perceiving incorrectly? How much of that is influencing how difficult their lives often feel?

I would barter a lot.

Here are 9 lies your teen believes.

1. I need to be popular to be happy.

When school and possibly a part-time job and extracurriculars are the brunt of your life, it can be easy to get caught up in just that world. Kids, much like adults, want to be accepted. However, to them, being accepted in their world can oftentimes mean sacrificing their beliefs, values, and self-respect, because let’s be honest: kids aren’t always the nicest. It’s important to emphasize to your teen that having friends is great- but being everyone’s friend is not required, and really not even possible.

2. My parents don’t want me to do anything fun.

Teenagers oftentimes hear us tell them no, and instead of realizing that we said no for their sake, they believe that we just don’t want them to have fun. I cannot tell you how many times my daughter has told me that I was ruining her life, because I wouldn’t let her do something that wasn’t necessarily the best for her.

3. Nothing will ever get better.

The smallest things can seem like the end of the world to a teenager. They haven’t yet went out in the world and experienced failure, and success – so to them, this feels like their final destination. Remind them that life is full of ups and downs, and nothing (not even a bad mood or horrible day) will last forever.

4. If I don’t make all the right moves now, I’ll never amount to anything.

When you are younger, you often hear, “You better pass that test, or you’ll never get into the school,” or “you better decide what you want to do – or you’ll be stuck in a job you hate forever,” and this puts so much pressure on your child. It’s okay to relax and take some time to figure it out. And failure isn’t the end. If they fail, remind them that they can try it again and eventually, they will get it.

5. If I am not perfect, I have failed.

In the age of social media, the pressure to be perfect is higher than it ever has been. Kids see their favorite influencer’s Instagram accounts and immediately believe that because they don’t have a perfect body, or the perfect teeth, that they have failed already. Make sure to point out to your teen that NO ONE is perfect.

6. I need to date someone to be happy.

Upon reaching a certain age, your teen will notice various boys and girls coupling up at school and wonder when they will find their one. While it’s very unlikely that your high school sweetheart will be your happily ever after, the pressure to find the one can feel intense. It’s important to point out people that focus on themselves first and how happy you can be without a person.

7. No one understands me.

Being a teen can be a very dark place to be at times. You feel like your parents are out to get you, you are afraid to tell your friends how you feel, and the world seems like a huge and lonely place.

8. No one else is struggling like I am.

The slightest thing can feel like the end of the world when you are a teen, because you haven’t yet experienced the real world. When something bad happens, they tend to get it in their mind that this struggle is unlike anything anyone else has ever experienced. And while it might not help to tell them that everyone struggles- it would definitely help to listen to them and help them to understand themselves.

9. People who are more popular than me are better than me.

When your teen goes to school and everyone surrounds the popular students, yet they only have a small friend group, it’s easy to get caught up in the notion that the popular kids must have something they don’t. And while everyone else around them may place popularity on a pedestal – they may start to believe that popularity is equal to quality and goodness. However, as we know – what is popular in high school is left long behind as soon as you throw your hats up in the air at graduation.