Those with teens... - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 6 Old 05-31-2005, 03:00 PM - Thread Starter
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A friend came round today and was saying how she felt she didn't know her 14 year old at the moment. Not just the teen stuff but from what I have heard, daughter spends most time at home in her room or at the computer. She attends various after school classes (she is unschooled, sort of!) and seems to spend a lot of time travelling to and staying with her friends. She is the eldest of 4 (10, 9, and 5)
So want I want to know is does anyone also have this? I had hoped when my children are teens they will still chat to me, I'll know what their interests are, we'll sit together. Obviously not all the time, don't wanna hold them back from growing away or do they not pull away from their family. Lol! So you BTDT Mom's let me know what your experience with teens is! Thanks xx
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#2 of 6 Old 05-31-2005, 05:32 PM
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Originally Posted by rainbowmum
A friend came round today and was saying how she felt she didn't know her 14 year old at the moment. Not just the teen stuff but from what I have heard, daughter spends most time at home in her room or at the computer.
My 15 year-old daughter and I are very close and that is something I have consciously created and nurtured. We have occasional "fights" and I lose my cool or she loses hers, and I attribute almost all of it to life, growing, and maturity--on both of our parts. I say that to say our "closeness" is not without normalcy.

I wanted with her what I did not have with my mom and I have worked hard at it -- including having to teach myself to be very affectionate (verbally and physically) after she got beyond the adorable baby/toddler years. I did it and did it and did it till it became a natural want and need for me.

I have always talked about everything under the sun with her in as calm a voice as possible to hopefully encourage her and help her trust that I am somebody she can talk to -- about the big stuff, as well as the little stuff -- you know, the chatting. I love hanging out with her and chatting (even if conversations around her current "love" or "crush" get old -- very old).

She does not have a telephone, computer or a television in her room for almost one single reason: my desire and need for her to NOT get into isolating patterns. My thinking is that in a short time she will be "on her own" and I want these years to be spent having as much "together" time as is possible, needed and wanted.
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#3 of 6 Old 05-31-2005, 08:29 PM
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My 14 yr old does spend time in his room alone--he didn't always, and I don't feel like it's excessive. We do a lot together, but as he's gotten older he's done more on his own, of course but we talk and I do know what his interests are and who his friends are, etc. He does have a phone and he uses the family computer and he has a tv in his room for video games, but there's a balance--I don't feel like I'm being shut out.

Like "Curious Me," I've made an effort to stay involved and let him know that I'm interested in him and his activities.

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#4 of 6 Old 05-31-2005, 10:31 PM
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I think it's totally normal for it to be a combination of needing your parents and wanting to talk with them, and pulling away from your parents and needing space from them.

I don't think my teen gives me more pause for thought than he did when he was 2. Sometimes he wanted hugging and loving and nusing, and sometimes he wanted to rant beside me, silently.

I figure I just need to be here and available. I try not to take normal growth personally.

That whole growth thing is a completely wild ride. And if anyone parent can get through it without surprises and personal growth, they need to write a handbook...or something. :LOL
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#5 of 6 Old 06-01-2005, 12:15 PM
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I have 2 teens - a just turned 16 girl and a just turned 15 boy. Each child is different. We are a close family, but our daughter has always been very independent. She has always cherished solitary pursuits (reading, Karate, crafts) and does not enjoy hugs and cuddles. The hardest part of learning to parent her has been easing up and letting her come to me. I treat her like and adult, and in return, she is much more forthcoming about her life and what goes on. Yes, she spends lots of time on the computer (not in her room, though) and with her friends, but I always know where she is, and will drop everything when she comes home and wants to talk.

My son has always been a cuddle bunny. At 15, he was the only kid who got off the bus from a week long trip & gave his mom a kiss. This is just the way he is. He also spends a lot of time with his friends, but he usually arranges it so I take everyone home - that gives me a lot of time to hear all about what went on and what he thinks.

The best advice I have on raising teens is when they are ready to talk, GO WITH IT - no matter what else is going on. My kids know that I am always a willing listener.
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#6 of 6 Old 06-01-2005, 06:43 PM
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Ive got a teen boy who spends much of his time in his room. Its not always, and if I am missing him I just knock on his door and pop in for a second. Sometimes I tease and say "Just want to remember what you look like..."

I do think it's normal.

"The true measure of a man is how he treats a man who can do him absolutely no good."
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