Home FamilyKids & Teens Parenting Teenagers: Crossing the Line Into Teen Years & The Decline of My Sanity #Teens

Parenting Teenagers: Crossing the Line Into Teen Years & The Decline of My Sanity #Teens

by TerriAnn
Adolescence / Puberty - Change from child to teenager comparison and its affect on parents.

The teen years are crazy! My daughter only turned thirteen in January but it already seems like an eternity. Parenting teenagers is no joke!

Adolescence / puberty is a difficult time for children. Their bodies are changing, hormones levels are all over the place, and they’re trying to cope with the awkward transition to adulthood. Knowing this doesn’t make it any easier for the parents though. In fact, I was moved to post this Facebook status (which got a ton of responses):

Adolescence / Puberty - Change from child to teenager comparison and its affect on parents. #teens

I already have a dent in my forehead from whacking it with my palm so many times. It’s as if she just woke up one morning and all common sense was just gone! Every second of every day has us asking, “Why?!” as she acts and does the weirdest things.

The Teenage Nightmare Begins

For example, after washing the sheets, my husband asked Munchkin (hmm, I should probably start using a different nickname for her) to fix her bed. With an oafish, dumb-founded expression and awkward, deep voice she said,

“HHHHUUUUUHHHHH? How do I do that?”

Really?! Munchkin constantly leaves her brush (full of hair) on the kitchen counter, sucks the mint flavor off the dental floss, only remembers to charge her cell phone when it’s at 1% or already dead, and spills and breaks everything!

Oh, and that bright girl that reads three grade levels above her own and speaks in an articulate manner? Poof – gone! Now, her automatic response to any greeting, question, or conversation is, “Huh? Wha?” I’m sure you have a pretty good idea of the impression that gives off. Is this really the same child I gave birth to and raised for 12 years and 11 months?

Adolescence / Puberty - Change from child to teenager comparison and its affect on parents. #teens

Experiencing Parental Pay Back

When I was younger, my mom would always say, “You know, TerriAnn, the whole world doesn’t revolve around you . . .” I never understood why she’d say that. I didn’t think I was self-centered or anything. Well, at least that’s not what I thought at the time. It turns out that teenagers can’t help but think of themselves all.the.time.

Everyone waiting at the door and ready to leave? It must be time to get a book for the way to prevent boredom, even though the store is across the street and we’re shopping for her. Dog is stuck in the entry way waiting to have her paws wiped dry before coming in? It can wait until Munchkin starts and finishes braiding her hair. Time to go to sleep? She suddenly remembers to get in the shower and takes an hour to put lotion on. Nothing happens unless it’s on her time table and she deems it worth her attention.

Fortunately, we don’t have to deal with her being boy-crazy yet. When going to sleep over at a friends, they text each other about which stuffies (stuffed animal friends) to bring. Munchkin is still innocent, just a little girl in a young woman’s body.

Teenage Girls – Best Friend or Worst Enemy?

The mood swings have hit with a vengeance though. One minute she’s exceedingly loving and has me in a bear hug death-lock as I struggle for air, and the next minute she’s Ms. Hyde. When waking up in the morning, anything we say might be considered an attack that evokes rude grunts and dirty looks. An hour later, she’s happily humming and skipping about as she willingly offers to help us with stuff.

Adolescence / Puberty - Change from child to teenager comparison and its affect on parents.

With all this, we have to continue to be the loving parents that keep that door of communication open. This means taking BIG breaths to calm down (after ridiculous antics on her part that were somehow our fault) and patiently listening to her feelings and motivating thoughts. How did it make her feel? What was her reasoning behind it? Could there have been a better way to react? Did we overreact without understanding her side? How can we avoid something similar in the future? Is there some way we can both compromise? Man, it’s tiring always being the ‘mature’ one!

The other night I asked Frans how in the world we were going to survive this. He simply answered, “Wait.” Sadly, the only thing we can do is hang in there and simply wait until she grows out of this dreaded stage.

Those also parenting teenagers, can you feel my pain?

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Raijean March 4, 2014 - 11:18 am

My son is five and i’m so not read for this…lol

Crystal @ Simply Being Mommy.com March 4, 2014 - 11:45 am

I heard “the whole world doesn’t revolve around you . . ” all. the. time.

Liz @ A Nut in a Nutshell March 4, 2014 - 12:12 pm

I’m just so stinkin’ grateful to be past all of that. All I can say is godspeed.

Danielle Royalegacy March 4, 2014 - 12:34 pm

With all three of my girls, I did not have this problem. My girls smoothly transitioned from child to teen to adult. What’s my secret? I homeschooled them and kept them out of that stinky public school system. No peer pressure, and my kids grew up to be healthy moral adults.

TerriAnn van Gosliga March 4, 2014 - 12:42 pm

I’m glad to here that. I’ve actually homeschooled my daughter since kindergarten so there must be something more 🙂 You mean they never got clueless, had mood swings, OR were clumsy?

Danielle Royalegacy March 4, 2014 - 12:51 pm

No, my girls were never that way. Oh, we also don’t have regular television in the house. Many misconceptions and the public school mantra from those vegetative TV shows. can infiltrate a child’s mind.. We have been very selective of what we watch on DVD or the internet.

Brandi March 4, 2014 - 12:59 pm

I love your husband’s advice to “Wait”. Thankfully, I have many years until my daughter is a teen, but I worked with teenagers for a long time. You are absolutely correct in knowing that communication is key. Keep talking, but definitely listen! You two have a great relationship already, so it won’t be TOOOO bad!

Kelsey Apley March 4, 2014 - 2:14 pm

I know I was a bit of a pill when I was a teen! When I look back I think man I was bit of a brat, hahahah!

April Decheine March 4, 2014 - 6:23 pm

I still worry about the driving and my 22 year old daughter!

Donna March 4, 2014 - 7:22 pm

My son is 11, so it won’t be long. I do already see little glimpses of it, too. Sigh. I tell him I’m his Mom, not his friend. One day will be friends, but for now, I guess I can look forward to him hating me and being embarrassed by me. :/

Theresa @ Faith and Family Reviews March 4, 2014 - 7:32 pm

We currently have three teenage girls in the house. Next year we will add a teen boy to the house. The year after that I will have FIVE teenagers. It certainly has its downsides but I will say our teens are wonderful helpers and I don’t know what I’d do without them….most days! 😉

Lucero @We Are Earthformed March 4, 2014 - 7:58 pm

We have 2 girls and though they are years from being teens I already see glimpses of the “attitude”. I’m so not looking forward to this.

Mickey March 4, 2014 - 10:07 pm

My girls are already showing a lot of independence and “spirit”, lol. I’m afraid of the teenage years.

Angela March 5, 2014 - 9:43 am

I can feel your pain. I had a boy, so it is different pain. I’m not sure which would be more stressful.

Vanessa: thequeenofswag March 5, 2014 - 11:18 pm

I can’t imagine what it’s like with a teenage girl but I know what it’s like with a boy and it’s still not fun.

valmg @ Mom Knows It All March 6, 2014 - 4:49 am

You have no idea. I was just commenting on another blog how I loved the childhood years. I sure did. We never had terrible 2s or anything. We had terrible 15s. At 15 it all went downhill. My oldest is now 18. I’ll get back to you when it improves substantially, if I am not so old that I forget to. 😉

Carlee C March 6, 2014 - 5:45 am

The teenage years were rough for me, and I have a 5 year old who already acts like one. Maybe I am getting the worst of it now and the teens will be a breeze. (Wishful Thinking).

Mama to 5 BLessings March 6, 2014 - 6:35 am

I have time left before my kids are teenagers, the whole thought of them as teenagers frightens me!

Debi@TheSpringMount6Pack March 6, 2014 - 9:32 am

I feel your pain. I have 2 teen boys and the one is a handful.

Danielle @ We Have It All March 6, 2014 - 7:58 pm

I hear ya! I totally feel your pain! We have a 20 year old, a 16, 15 and 13 year old and a 4 year old who thinks she’s 13 haha. These years are tough!

Tammy March 7, 2014 - 12:41 pm

Everyone kept telling me that it was going to be 7 long years from 13 to 19 and everyday was going to be a tough one. I think I’m beyond blessed because we’re almost at 18 and honestly I can say our daughter has never gone through most of the ‘teenage girl’ stuff.

Marcie W. March 7, 2014 - 4:05 pm

I can not totally relate YET, however my oldest is turning 10 this summer and I am starting to see a lot of changes. Not all of them are positive either!

Toni March 7, 2014 - 6:01 pm

I totally feel your pain. The hormones and attitude isn’t just for girls either, my boy gets so moody, it drives me bonkers.

Penelope Guzman (NYC Blogger) March 7, 2014 - 7:23 pm

I just never want to deal with this, I don’t think I’ll ever be ready, lol

Paula @ Frosted Fingers March 7, 2014 - 8:05 pm

I’m so scared of the teenage years and I now have 2 girls. Help Me!!!

Colleen March 8, 2014 - 4:56 pm

Oh my that sounds exactly like my son who is turning 14 next month!

Robin Gagnon {Mom Foodie} March 8, 2014 - 8:06 pm

Mine is not even 7 yet and I swear there are moments I think she’s a teen…

Rachel @ following in my shoes March 8, 2014 - 8:21 pm

Gah!!!! I don’t want to even think about it.

HilLesha March 8, 2014 - 9:17 pm

To be honest, this sounds like my son, and he’ll be turning 8 this month! Not quite a teenager, but it feels like I’m raising one at times. ~lol~

Ty @ Mama of 3 Munchkins March 8, 2014 - 10:53 pm

I have three teenagers (two girls and one boy), luckily they’re pretty good and don’t have attitudes. On occasion they don’t clean when asked, but luckily that’s rare.

Shell Feis March 9, 2014 - 1:36 am

I’m not looking forward to having two teenage boys! Luckily I have 9 years left for my older one & 12 years and 11 months for the younger. 😛

Anne - Mommy Has to Work March 9, 2014 - 4:16 pm

My 13 year old son is giving me a run for my money. Now my daughter, I have a few years to go..

April Decheine March 9, 2014 - 5:48 pm

Oh boy do I understand this! Girl teens are a lot more work than boys.

Kathleen B March 9, 2014 - 9:21 pm

Oh how do I feel your pain. My oldest turned 13 last June and my second son will turn 13 this December. In 5 years I will have 4 teenagers in my home. I don’t know if my sanity can survive!

Lolo March 9, 2014 - 9:52 pm

I was just telling my husband that our baby is so sweet now, wait until she fights us abut everything she put on. lol

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