Allow them to feel what they feel and empathize that you GET it. Imagine feeling stuck in your house with your mom and/or dad 24/7 as an adult?! (Just kidding, mom!)
Often, cheering your teen may just make them feel more upset. They may dig in even deeper to convince you they’re not crazy or selfish. They are sad and angry and disappointed. And that is OKAY.
Step #1: Acknowledge that you totally understand their feelings of anger and frustration. Period.
Step #2: Ask them what might make them feel better about the situation. They may have an idea you’d never have thought of.
Step #3: Share a personal story with your teen. Tell him/her about a time you felt similarly. Add in that THIS situation is far worse, so WOW, you can imagine how difficult this must be! Be genuine though – kids will smell it a mile away if you’re being condescending.
Step #4: When they are ready… move on to “take a break,” find a distraction that is fun and fosters bonding like an old movie night, family board games, look through old pictures, bake cookies together, etc.