Resources for parents and their difficult teens

Terry Pomerantz and the Pomerantz Foundation are particularly sensitive to the challenges that parents with difficult teens must face. In fact, “the resources available to parents with a difficult teen are often insufficient considering the severity of the problems these parents have to deal with. I am not surprised that these parents end up feeling overwhelmed by the whole situation. However, there are resources available.”

How to recognize signs of distress in a teen?

A young teenager in distress sitting on the floor in front of her bed.

In order not to become suddenly overwhelmed by problems with their teens, it is important that parents be mindful of changes in their behaviour and mood.

Here are just a few behaviours that might be a sign that distress or despair is creeping up in your teen:

  • A change in their sleep cycle (trouble sleeping or sleeps all the time)
  • A change in appetite (eats less or eats a lot)
  • A change in their energy levels (exuberant energy or an apathetic teen)
  • Problems concentrating or loss of memory. Often distracted
  • Anger, sadness, suicidal ideation
  • Poor results in school
  • No longer engages in regular leisure activities, avoids friends, is absent in school.

Establishing Open Communication

A mother and daughter in open communication.

Establishing regular open communication with your teenage child is probably the best way for you, as a parent, to ensure that their behaviour remains manageable, while also preventing you from getting overwhelmed.

However, it is important that parents refrain from judging their teen’s attitude. It is preferable to allow your teen to use their own judgement, promoting a sense of freedom and responsibility.

Encouraging Positive Activities

When parents notice their teen becoming increasingly anxious and communicating less and less, they should invite them to come out of their shell to explore new creative and social activities, or sports. “As parents, it is our responsibility to stimulate our children’s curiosity.”

These activities:

  • Promote good physical health and emotional balance
  • Stimulate their intellect, curiosity and creativity
  • Promote social networking
  • Help teens experiment and discover new things.

Available Professional Resources

Teenage boy listening to advice of school psychologist.

Parents with difficult teens have access to several professional resources to help their children overcome the challenges with which they are faced. Here are just a few:

  • Crisis Centers

There are crisis centers everywhere in Quebec. These centers offer help to teens in trouble and their parents.

  • Resources for problems with addiction

These quality resources help teens who have problems with drugs and alcohol.

  • Cyberdependency

Centers that offer services that help overcome cyberdependency are part of the Santé et Services sociaux du Québec (Quebec Health and Social Services) network.


  • Dr Julien Social Pediatrics Center

Social pediatrics community centers are safe and welcoming centers that specialize in medical care for highly vulnerable children.

  • Center for the Prevention of Radicalization Leading to Violence

When a teen joins a cause, an ideology or a gang, they can become quite radical and come ot see violence as legitimate behaviour.

  • Phone: 514-687-7141 extension 116

1-877-687-7141 extension 116

  • Website: h
  • Emergency: 911

Pomerantz Foundation Implication

When referring to difficult teens, we often think of the rebel teen who likes to challenge parents and teachers. But many teens suffer from even more debilitating and disturbing problems that can even put their lives in danger. For example, teens who experience school bullying or a parent’s alcoholism, without forgetting those who suffer from schizophrenia, bi-polar disorder, attention deficit disorder or deficiencies caused by trauma or severe illnesses.

Portrait Of Two Teenage Children Helping Parents With Gardening Outdoors At Home

For several years, the Pomerantz Foundation has been supporting organizations like SunYouth ‒who offers social and sports activities to youth- and the  Yaldei Development Center ‒who helps children with specific talents and needs reach their full potential- to help these children and their parents.

The Pomerantz Foundation relies on your generosity to be able to keep supporting these organizations, who keep building a better world for our children, day after day, here in Quebec.

Entrepreneur and prominent figure in Montreal's real estate and manufacturing sectors, Terry Pomerantz approaches every aspect of life with heart and character. At the helm of Domfoam and T.R.A.M.S Property Management, he carries on his late father's legacy while dedicating his philanthropic commitment to the Pomerantz Foundation, which has been actively supporting children's causes since 1991.