Raising Teens in Today’s World

It is never easy to raise a child-especially a teenager. Anyone who has experienced this can relate to this statement. I  am often grateful that my years of raising my five children is over (yeah-right)!  Watching the struggles of my kids, now parents, raising their own children is hard enough but I can turn the ringer off of my phone and pull the covers over my head at night if I want to. No waiting up to make sure everyone is home and tucked in for the night.  I sometimes cringe when I recall some of the conversations I had with my teens. Occasionally, however, I can smile with a hint of pride on how other discussions turned out. I tried my best but, as you probably know (either being a teen once or raising a teen), things do not always go as planned. It was all very hard work-a true labor of love-but not one I would like to try again anytime soon!

Today I felt more than a twinge of pride when I read my daughters Facebook post. Her courage touched me deeply and I wanted to share what she wrote:

Hi Mom,

I know you aren’t on Facebook anymore. This is what I posted this morning. It was a wow moment. Thought I would share! Love you.

Please read! I have always had open and frank discussions with my children about safety, danger, peer pressure, life in general. Sometimes, I get the eye roll implying “mom, we’ve already heard this”. With my son now licensed and driving, and my daughter in middle school, I continue to, from time to time, remind or reiterate these dangers, providing tips, advice, and love. Last night after my son got home from the football game, I decided to sit him down for another talk. The question often is “why don’t you trust me?” My reply is always the same, I do trust you, it’s the rest of the world that I don’t trust. He became a little irritated by the conversation of what to do if someone is drinking, not getting in cars, call us if you are ever in a bad situation, never let others drive, etc. I am not in any way condoning underage drinking, however I am not naïve to believe such situations aren’t happening at some time or that our children are not at some point being exposed. I felt bad for irritating him, especially following a fun evening for him and a safe return, my timing probably wasn’t great. This morning I got up and was doing my usual reading the news online and came across this story.

‘We felt invincible’

Irritate your children! Talk to them! Pound it into their head! Say it and then say it again!!!! It’s worth it. They are worth it!

Wow is right!

Zebra-baby-giving-mom-a-kiss

Guess she was listening after all.

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12 thoughts on “Raising Teens in Today’s World

  1. Thank you! It’s so hard to judge yourself as a parent. As I have watched my children grow and become such marvelous adults I see that there perhaps were many things I did right. The curse of parenthood is feeling guilty and worrying if you failed in some way or could have done better in other ways . I try to set that aside now and just focus on these amazing adults that they now are!! I have been blessed– that is for sure!!

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  2. wow, great perspective Jan. they are worth irritating. I am PETRIFIED at the upcoming driver’s test of my youngest. I feel she is easily distracted, and am worried sick about letting her loose in the car to drive with her friends. I am glad you posted this. I am going to be unrelenting in my reminders to her to obey the law and only allow the legal number of people in the car at night. this parenthood stuff is wickedly stressful. xx Nancy

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  3. It is so hard to let them grow up, isn’t it, Nancy? Especially when it is something as huge as driving. I feel your pain on this. Even when they are grown and have independent lives it is still hard to watch when they make choices we might not agree with or as they struggle to find their place in the world! Who knew that parenting was going to be so hard?

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