Parenting an early teen is a lot like parenting a toddler in some ways. The developmental stage is all about moving toward independence, not always gracefully or responsibly.
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We can't change our teen basic personality, and the outside environment has a profound effect, from peers to school to media. But how we parent makes the critical difference in how our teen acts, from how rebellious he is to whether she throws emotional tantrums, from whether he gets enough sleep to how studious she is.
If we can manage our own emotions, extend respect, offer appropriate freedom, and maintain intimacy and communication -- a tall order for most parents -- we can be pleasantly surprised by how rewarding the teen years can be.
The rewards are huge, as we watch our child transform and blossom in front of our eyes. It's appropriate for teens to want to spend more time with their peers than their parents as they get older, but kids who are well grounded in their families will respond well to parents' efforts to stay connected. And parents who have bonded adequately with early children at each earlier stage will feel invested enough early their teens to gif fuck garters connected, even if a lot of effort is required.
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The teen years are notoriously challenging for parents. Much like the toddler years, kids sometimes seem intent on doing exactly the opposite fusker what we ask, for some of the same reasons: Their job now is to find their sea legs as a person, to shape an identity, to sort out fusker important to them.
Their integrity would be compromised by simply doing what we ask because we ask it. They need to believe it's the right thing for THEM. My Aha! Parenting moment this week came when my almost teen year old daughter had some friends over for a sleepover.