I made a parenting mistake when my kids were teenagers - I didn't listen enough. The teen years are really tough, and sometimes I felt like I was navigating through them as a parent alone.
Because I offered my adult wisdom all the time to my daughter back when she was in her mid-teens, we would fight, fight, and fight some more. In hindsight, I realize if I had just listened and gave her plenty of room to talk, she would have continued to come to me with her issues, worries, and stories. Instead, I butted in and offer advice on everything. By not listening, I drove her away.
My husband and I have been married for 27 years, and during this time, she turned to him a lot. He helped bridge the gap and HE listened to her. Fortunately, his advice was well-received.
Fast forward ten years, and I'm happy to report that we now have a wonderful relationship. We laugh and talk almost every day. And I listen to her. If she had a stressful day, I listen. If she wants to talk about work, I listen. Advice is only given when warranted and asked for. By my backing away and listening, my girl grew up and became a very responsible young woman. She knows now she has a mom she can turn to with anything. And I learned that listening is sometimes a lot more important than offering unsolicited advice and opinions.