When you become a parent all of a sudden you open yourself to a whole new world of unwanted and unasked for advice. Even before the child is born.
When the baby was born it was a never ending stream of “watch his head!” “his socks are too tight” or “make sure you don’t (insert the latest trend)” At this rate it is a shock I decided to have another one and even more so that they are now teenagers.
Yes, we have survived to this point.
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The advice comes in many formats and from many things. Books, friends, family members, even strangers – all like to add their two cents. If only it was real money. Oh, how rich I would be 😉
The thing I’ve learned over the years is not all advice is bad, not all is good and not all is necessarily true for your child.
The most common phrase I have heard over the years was, “just wait until they are teenagers!” Or “how will you homeschool them then?”
Well, today I invite you into my world with teenagers. Here is my top 10 of what life is like with teenagers.
Life with teenagers:
1. With teenagers, you can have real “give and take” conversations.
I was having a discussion with my son the other day.
( Yes, discussion means argument, but more on the conversation side.)
Anyway, I realized something. I was looking up to my son. Not just in “wow he’s taller than me” but in that, I look forward to hearing his point of view on the matter.
What does he think? Why? It is amazing to see where they learn things, how they see it? They naturally think outside the box and I love that. Oh yes, he still drives me crazy and does things on a daily basis that make me go, “huh?”
Teenagers have this amazing ability to see things in a way we don’t. The struggle for me is to LISTEN. Not just hear and continue on but stop typing, stop washing, stop moving and actually hear what they are saying. Try it. You might just be blown away.
Life with kids #12
S14: mumble mumble mumble
Me: Was that English?
S14: I understood myself perfectly.
2. They express more interest in their education.
I’m not going to joke or beat around the bush. I never thought I would be homeschooling high school. Then again I wasn’t going to homeschool at all. So yeah.
Teenagers can finally express a real interest in what they want to learn. Help out with the research stage. Do this whole “independent learning allowing you to work while they do” thing.
I asked my kids if you could learn about anything you want for a month what would it be?
D13 – I want to learn who invented food. I mean who saw a chicken lay an egg and thought-hey let’s eat this thing the chicken pooped out?
Me: You don’t have to do it, I mean if you could?
I must admit it is nice to not have to carry the load alone.
3. Teenagers have a great sense of humor and terrible timing.
One of my favorite parts of parenting teenagers is watching them try to figure out where the line is and how close they can come in crossing it when they are joking and teasing. What a battle it is!
It is something that even some adults are still trying to figure out.
However, I will admit my two keep me laughing most days.
D13 and I were baking last minute cookie creation going on the other day. They were cut in the shapes of bears and dinosaurs.
D13: They are all so cute until you realize they are going to lose their heads.”
I have to remember that it is not always what they say but what they mean when they talk. It is hard with my son and “tone”. I often find myself saying, “Watch your tone Mr!” then I realize maybe he can’t help it.
We were driving down the road and passed a massive box for holding your garbage at the end of someone’s driveway.
D:13: That is the biggest garbage can I’ve ever seen…..it’s kind of trashy!”
4. Teenagers have an interesting view on what is school and what is not.
My teenagers like structure and schedules. They also like school and want “school to be school” as in books, workbooks, and textbooks. That is school. Video games and movies are not.
We chilled out during the storm. The kids were playing Minecraft.
S14: I have 2 stacks of wool
Me: Good job…how big is a stack?
S14: Most stacks are 64. They picked that as you can divide it easily.
Me: What do you mean?
S14: Ya know, half of 64 is 32, half of 32 is 16, half of 16 is
D13 (butting in) 8 and half of 8 is 4, half of 4 is 2. Easy.
*wink* move along folks no learning today, sorry!
Minecraft is not school”
There is no need for me to make “school” out of everything. I have had to learn to back off and let them play.
5. You can finally stop nagging.
I don’t nag. I pride myself in NOT nagging. I do remind my family that they have no clue what nagging IS and perhaps they need a demonstration…to you know to remind them what nagging is 😉
S:14 response the other day.
“You should be proud. You don’t nag because we do everything you ask us as soon as you ask us to do it. Just like you’ve been drilling in my head for 14 years. “
Often I will find my teenagers getting wood, chipping in to help with dishes, making supper and more as they tell me about their day. All that nagging and teaching is starting to pay off.Raising #teenagers? How brave are you? Sharing a sneak peek into my life with teens. #homeschool… Click To Tweet
6. You will be amazed at what you are reminding (nagging) them about.
That said, I am both blown away by how amazing they are and yet shocked at what I am still reminding them about every.single.day.
Every day I am repeating showers, hygiene, chew with mouth shut and more. Seriously at two, they knew these things, what happened??
About to start eating supper, I remind everyone to use manners. “Please” and “Thank you”
D13: Parent mode initiated.“
7. You will be amazed at what they have learned all on their own.
My kids love and use photoshop. I did not teach them that.
My daughter can bake and follow a recipe. I did not teach her that.
The build things in Minecraft that make my head hurt. It is squares…have you seen this stuff in action? Amazing.
They amaze me daily of the things they can do that I did not teach them.
D:13 finding money in a place it was not supposed to be.
Me: What’s wrong?
D13: I don’t keep savings in my wallet, because then I spend it. I wonder where this is supposed to be?
Teenagers are can be amazing self-learners if we can provide them with the confidence to try and to know it is okay to fail.
8. They will stop helping with your blogging needs.
If you are a blogger and a mom of teens you will understand this struggle. Yes, they can make your photos, graphics and lay down the most awesome HTML you ever did see. Will they? No.
All of a sudden all your blog photos are green hoodies, sneakers, and feet. They no longer have faces.
They will also frown and make remarks of your photography skills.
I took a picture of my daughters hot chocolate and she’s like,” great can I drink it now?? Or are you still playing photographer?”
Life of a homeschool blogger, can you relate? 😉
They also won’t have names or even nicknames. D is daughter and 13 is her age. D13. S is son and 14 is his age. S14. In case you were confused.
9. You will be so “not cool” anymore.
If you ever were cool mom, don’t expect that to last. However, now is a great time for payback for when they thought peeking under bathroom door stalls in public was “fun” or drawing in poop on your walls was being artistic.
Life with teens #265
D13: I want to show you what I learned in math.
Me: Okay, Lay it on me, BABY!
D13: Don’t ever say that again.
I am so not cool right now. #momlife
10. It is even more than what you hoped for.
Life with teens is pretty amazing. It is also frustrating, hard, confusing and a whirlwind. There are hormones to deal with, tempers to get a hold of, and words to bite back.
There is too much consuming of coffee and chocolate and on really rough days cheesecake.
There is also sidesplitting laughter, crazy experiments, nutty questions that defy reality.
There are deep serious conversations you never imagined your “baby” would discuss.