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Workshop #9 Adolescence - Page 3

post #41 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by Oriole View Post
I am curious to see how do you see your parenting of your teens is reflective on how you were parented during this age.

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This is a hard question for me too. I left home at 13 so I basically did not have parents through these years. There was no trouble per se at home but I just needed to live my life .. so I left ... I guess I try to give my kids the freedom to live "their" lives within the comfort of our home. I would like to keep them around a little longer than I stayed
post #42 of 52
I wanted to jump into this thread even though I am not parenting adolescents at the moment, I have in the past (I parented my step kids through them) and am not far from it with my dd.
I hope to parent alot like my parents in that they were very involved in my life, and moderately strict yet with a fair amount of trust. Another thing they did is encourage us to be very active in alot of organized activities (basically there was not time to get into trouble), I worry about that as we intend to continue homeschooling and I don't see alot of those opportunities for teen homeschoolers. One thing I intend to do very differently is not talk to her about our differences. My father inadvertantly taught me not to respect my mother by making all her problems known to me which caused a plethora of problems between us. I don't think I really learned to respect her again until I became a mother.

One thing I worry about from my experience with dsd adn dss is dealing with lying. Maybe it won't be a problem as i have always stressed to dd and dgd the importance of honesty for trust. But... my husband strongly believed that it was important for the kids to know we believed in them. Consequently we NEVER accused them of lying unless we had physical undisputable proof, which we rarely had. They lied all the time, we knew they were lying but pretended we didn't and they thought we were idiots. I hated every year of it. dsd still compulsively lies to us when there is really no reason to do so. We have always supported her unconditionally. It is really this great unresolved issue for me. BTW my parents were always from childhood clear that lying is unacceptable, but as we didn't lie as teenagers I don't know what they would have done.

Cherie2, I wanted to ask. If your homelife was acceptable what was the life that you wanted that you couldn't have with the support of your parents? The idea of a 13 yo leaving home to "live their life" terrifies me. How could they have supported you so that you could do that and not have left home?
post #43 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by greenmama View Post
Cherie2, I wanted to ask. If your homelife was acceptable what was the life that you wanted that you couldn't have with the support of your parents? The idea of a 13 yo leaving home to "live their life" terrifies me. How could they have supported you so that you could do that and not have left home?
I know, it seems so extremely radical to me now as a parent ... but in my memories it was very natural and normal. My mother was in the depths of her gypsy days at the time. (traveling in busses with with hippie/gypsies to barter fairs and rainbow gatherings)

I grew up mostly with my dad in Los Angeles but had been living with mom since about age 10. Her house was always full of all kinds of people, there was a lot of music and fun and philosophical conversation. Her friends became my friends (many were much younger than she was).

I went to live with dad again in 6th grade the spent that summer back up with mom in Oregon. I started 7th grade in LA but after a couple of weeks I just could not live that LA life anymore. All the kids seemed so foreign and immature. The summer in Oregon had been one of those "live-changing" summers and I was not the same person anymore.

So I went back and instead of traveling with mom, I traveled with other family friends and decided school and spending time with 13 year olds was not for me anymore. We traveled, picked apples, camped in the bitterroot foothills. I saw 48 states from the age of 15 to 17. I worked in nurseries, orchards and at one point had my own little day care. We'd sit in the coffee shop for hours, expand our minds on the beach and sing at open mic. Its not the typical teenage hood, but it was mine and I loved it. And if this is the path one of my kids had wanted to take, I would not fault them for it.

I selfishly want my kids closer to me. I try to be tuned in to them and what their needs are. I make no demands of my teens. School is their choice, bathing is their choice, I am working hard not to make judgments and to let them discover themselves. Hopefully they feel comfortable enough at home to stick around for a while. But if they need to leave, I will find a way to deal with that.
post #44 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by greenmama View Post
How could they have supported you so that you could do that and not have left home?
I have been thinking about this all day and have not been able to come up with an answer. I needed separateness .. i needed to rip them away like a band-aid. I don't know, all I can think of is that it was my path.. and I am actually quite grateful that they allowed me that.
post #45 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by Oriole View Post
I am curious to see how do you see your parenting of your teens is reflective on how you were parented during this age.

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I'd like to join the party.

I grew up in what I saw as a controlling environment. My parents had a "As long as you live in my house, you'll follow my rules" policy. There were people they forbid me to spend time with, we had curfews, I had my car keys taken away as punishment. They determined that I would go to college, and dismissed the plans I had. Their way was the only way.

I think they thought that because they were older, they knew better and that they were trying to keep me safe.

I ended up rebelling big time--I could have been sent to juvi for any number of things except that I didn't get caught. And in hindsight, I'm amazed that I made it through that period alive. It was all an attempt to be heard. There were some super-bad decisions I was making, but *I* was making them. I don't think my parents know the half of it, still. I was so angry. When I turned 18 I was sat down and told, "Now you're legally an adult, anything you do, you're responsible for." So I went from being totally controlled, to totally on my own.

I decided then that I would treat my kids as people with valid ideas and opinions and that I would respect their feelings and treat them as I wanted to be treated.
post #46 of 52
This is an interesting topic... my daughter will turn 16 on Saturday, and I really feel a sense of relief that she made it through 15 without any of the stuff I went through. At 15 I ran away from home, lived on the streets on L.A. for a while, came back and lived in a runaway shelter home, and then ended up institutionalized... and the rest of my adolescence was more of the same, with a stint in foster care. It took me many years to get my life back on track, and to recover from all of that. I never lived at home after I was 15... so I was really "parented" by the state.

I've done things very differently all the way through, and admittedly, a lot of it has been a reaction to the way I was parented.

Dar
post #47 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by SagMom View Post
I decided then that I would treat my kids as people with valid ideas and opinions and that I would respect their feelings and treat them as I wanted to be treated.
This is what I try to do. I don't know that I'm very good at it but I try very hard. I try to be interested and involved in my children's lives without being controlling and authoritarian. I don't have rules but try to live by principles instead.
post #48 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dar View Post
...I really feel a sense of relief that she made it through 15 without any of the stuff I went through.
Oh, gosh, yes. At times, I look at my teens and remember what I was doing at their ages. I am so overwhelmed with relief that they aren't doing the same self-destructive things.

The frank discussions with my teens have been difficult at times for me. I didn't talk with my parents about so much, and it's been uncomfortable at times but I've tried to make it ordinary.
post #49 of 52
I'm having such a hard time dealing with this age. My dd is 14 and at times it can be very trying. I know that she is a good kid but sometimes the choices she makes...I wish she was more like I was at that age...I didn't get into trouble at all...not because I was scared of my parents or anything, they were great. I just wasn't interested in any of that.

It is so difficult to walk that line between starting to let them make their own choices and keeping them safe. It is hard as a parent to let go, even though I know I have to. I suppose it wouldn't feel as difficult if I didn't get the attitude from her when she doesn't agree with something.

Everyone I have talked to about this have told me that this age is the hardest and that over the course of the next year things should settle down...I sure hope so.
post #50 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by Emzachsmama View Post
Everyone I have talked to about this have told me that this age is the hardest and that over the course of the next year things should settle down...I sure hope so.
That was my experience with my now almost 18yo.
post #51 of 52
I got in far less trouble than dsd does.

I had a very different environment growing up, my parents weren't divorced, I didn't have stepparents, I don't remember going through the rebellious stage and wanting tattoos, thinking smoking looks cool, or having any of the self-image issues. I certainly wasn't boy crazy. So dsd and I differ this way, and maybe that's why I worry this much?

At the same time, I remember feeling unsure and insecure, I certainly wasn't in the popular crowd, I remember having unreasonable idealistic arguments with everyone , and taking what my parents did for granted. So in that way, I relate to her, and see this in her, and have a certain degree of certainty that this too shall pass.
post #52 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by Oriole View Post
I got in far less trouble than dsd does.

I had a very different environment growing up, my parents weren't divorced, I didn't have stepparents, I don't remember going through the rebellious stage and wanting tattoos, thinking smoking looks cool, or having any of the self-image issues. I certainly wasn't boy crazy. So dsd and I differ this way, and maybe that's why I worry this much?
I think this is the major issue with my dh. He had a picture perfect childhood. He says his parents were supportive and loving and he never felt any desire to rebel. He can't understand what ds is thinking or why he does what he does. I, on the other hand, had to deal with divorced parents, a stepmom and multiple possible stepdads. I was wild and rebellious and did lots of crazy things that I'm surprised now I lived through. I can relate to ds' feelings of abandonment and unworthiness because of an absent father.
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