It’s no mystery our teens pull away as they get older and finding things to do with them that you both enjoy can be tough if not impossible. As their parents, we long to bond with them and most days they don’t seem to need to connect like we do.
One thing that works like a charm and leaves you all feeling a bit more bonded is a good binge-watching session.
Even if you aren’t talking, you are still spending time together and it’s nice to have something to talk with your teen about during those moments you feel like trying to get them to talk resembles pulling out their toe nails.
Don’t know where to start?
Here are Grown and Flown’s top shows to binge watch with your teen.
1. Stranger Things
This tight group of kids who live in a small Indiana town might take you back to the days when you’d watch Goonies and E.T. with your besties since it takes place in the ‘80s. The wardrobe does not disappoint, and the acting is phenomenal, those kids are wise beyond their years. When a mother played by Winona Ryder has her son go missing, the investigation around finding him presents lots of supernatural mysteries. This is by far my kids’ favorite show.
This classic show makes my teenagers laugh and it’s so exciting they’ve reached an age where they think the same things are funny that I do. You can’t help but imitate George or Kramer in your everyday life. Even if you and your family watch the same episodes over and over, they literally don’t get old.
I may have let my kids watch this show before they were mature enough, but in my defense, they’d go between laughing at Joey and Phoebe, then back to their Tonka Trucks. This show is nostalgic as it reminds me of gathering in my dorm room on Thursday nights with my best girls and a box of wine. I like binge-watching now even better with my kiddos on a Friday night with takeout. This group of a Friends is a great reminder of the people we all need in our life.
This American drama series has a little Sci-Fi with splashes of romance. The flashbacks and flash forwards are what pulls you in, it’s one of those shows you can’t get enough of. I watched it in its entirety when my kids were young – I’d put them to bed and was so engrossed I couldn’t wait for following week so I could see what happened next. Now that they are older and we can enjoy it together, the feel the same way. Watching it with them makes me feel like I am watching it first the first time.
5. The Office
Written by Greg Daniels, a writer for The Simpsons, Saturday Night Live, and King Of The Hill, you know a show simply written about the lives of adults who work for a paper company is going to be good. Something about the timing of the actors and their delivery is gold. It’s also been good for my teens to get a look at people who go to a job everyday they don’t love. I am hopeful it will instill in them to drive to pursue their passions as a career. The humor is inappropriately perfect.
6. The Middle
This show might be a little too relatable for my family, in fact, many tell us we look like the cast. My youngest does resemble Brick, my oldest walks around in his underwear and has the same attitude towards life as Alex, and I have a daughter right in the middle. The show follows a lower-middle income family and their daily struggles. They make me feel validated in way I didn’t know was possible. I think most American families can relate to this one. My kids like it for its humor and how the show has followed the kids from the elementary years up to college.
There’s nothing wrong with spending a little (or a lot) of family time in front of the television. Pick a show and let the bonding begin—just don’t forget to load up on your favorite snacks. Before you know it, your teen just might want to stay in with you every once in a while on a Friday or Saturday night.