This week I’ve been musing on the raising of teens and just what a dangerous endeavor it can be. I suppose parenting in general, really. It’s this seemingly never-ending cycle of need and rejection that starts in infancy, cruises along, and really hits its stride in the preteen or teenage years.
Teens are funny creatures. No longer children, yet not quite adults, they reel you in with need and vulnerability, firing off every nurturing mama-nerve you possess. When one’s baby is struggling, it’s a visceral response that comes out. We want to help. We want to offer wisdom. After all, we have a lot more life experience to draw from.
So we start momming.
In my last post I wrote a grand set up for this 2019 Beautiful Truths #4, and now I find that I’m struggling to put words to it. In my attempts to narrow down and actually define this truth, I have lots of words and phrases that run through my head.
Recently, I wrote an article titled, “5 Tips For Safely Surviving the Preteen Years”. I hope it provided some food for thought on how to approach this turbulent season of parenting. But what about those of you who are already in the thick of the battle? Why does your child suddenly seem like a stranger, and a combative one at that? What happened? And most importantly, is there anything we can do to calm the storm?
These are big questions and before I attempt to answer them I want to give the caveat that I am no child psychologist. I can only approach this from the perspective of having been the problem child, as well as over 20 years of personal research into personality types, love languages, learning styles, and simple observation of the families in my sphere. With that said, I see three main root causes for the conflict between parents and preteens/teenagers.