Even though no one here is officially an adolescent, Hubby and I are already seeing some of the emotional storms that are common to that age. I’ll be the first to say that I have absolutely no idea what I’m doing here…I think “winging it” is going to be the order of the decade.
I read a book a long time ago about preparing your kids for adulthood by arming them with as many facts as possible about the world and how it works. We’re cautious in what we say so as not to burden the boys with too many stresses, but we are direct and honest in our conversations. We want them to understand as much as possible so they make informed decisions as they grow and take over responsibility.
Since arming the boys with facts is helpful, I figure that telling them what to expect emotionally is a good idea too. So, when I get the opportunity, I make sure to tell them as clearly as possible things like:
- many teens feel like their parents are stupid and don’t understand what they’re going through
- adolescence is a time of idealism when the world seems really unfair
- emotions are stronger now; it’s a normal part of development
- you’re normal, you’re not alone, you’re normal
Is this working? Time will tell. We had family visiting all week and they just left yesterday. A few hours later, TechnoBoy was wandering the house complaining that there was nothing fun to do and no one fun to play with. I told him that he was feeling the “holiday letdown”, which happens when you have lots of fun and excitement for the holidays, then it ends, and you feel let down. Totally normal, not to worry.
The complaining and wandering stopped; I’m taking that as a good sign.
Earnest Parenting: help for parents of tweens and teens.
Image courtesy of Blyzz via Creative Commons license, some rights reserved.