Melbourne: A study into today`s tweens and teens has revealed that they will not talk to their parents about their innermost fears and turmoil.
Social researcher Neer Korn said tweens, aged from about 9 to 12, and teens avoid telling their parents the truth about what`s happening at school or online because they often fear their reaction.
Korn, whose company The Korn Group released the study ``The Truth About Teens And Tweens``, said parents need to reassess how they talk to their children if they want them to be more open.
Michelle Mitchell, author of ``What Teenage Girls Don`t Tell Their Parents``, agrees.
"They think their parents will panic and embarrass them by becoming too involved. Instead of deciding what they think should be done, parents need to ask their children ``what do you want me to do?" the Daily Telegraph quoted her as saying.
But if your daughter rolls her eyes whenever you ask her a question or your son simply grunts, here is what might really be going on in your tween or teen`s life.
Mitchell and Korn agree that bullying is a bigger part of everyday life for tweens and teens than parents realise.
"It happens in the playground and it happens online, it happens every day. It might be low-level like ignoring certain friends or making nasty comments but it can still be hurtful and damaging," Mitchell said.
Korn says tweens have changeable crushes while teens have relationships, which may or may not become sexual. Teenagers don``t want to talk to their parents about the details of what goes on in their relationships.
A recent report found 44.2 percent of 13-year-olds and 84.7 percent of 17-year-olds had consumed alcohol in the past year. And 8.4 percent of 13-year-olds and 31.4 percent of 17-year-olds had smoked.
The Korn Group said drinking alcohol is almost expected at many teenage parties and marijuana is "easy" to get.
Mitchell says parents need to arm themselves with knowledge about what their teenagers are doing online, to protect them from bullying and also predators.
They might say they hate you but that doesn`t change the fact tweens and teens enjoy time with their families.
Keeping up with who are your teenage daughter`s "best friends" can be almost a full-time job.
"Having friends means being accepted, so teenagers will put up with a lot before leaving a group of friends. That can be difficult for parents," Mitchell said.