Moms of teens, you are not alone.
Raising kids is hard. I have three, 7 and under, and sometimes it is the hardest thing I’ve done just to survive the day. The thing is that I know that there are harder days to come. As the mother of little kids, I am reminded that I’ll miss these days and the days of the teenager are coming.
I remember being a teenager. I was not nice, I was moody, and the main target for my angst was my mom. I was a good kid. I avoided trouble because I was the oldest daughter, and I was too afraid to go down that road. All that being said, I was still rough on the people that loved me the most. I know that even though I was a good kid, my parents worried fiercely about my sister and me.
These days I teach high school math and chemistry. I spend the majority of my day with teenagers right in the height of their teenage prime, and you know what? I love it. They are fun, they are sweet, and they are devastatingly funny. You know why I enjoy them so much? They aren’t my flesh and blood. I didn’t give life to them and don’t declare my love to them every day, therefore, embarrassing them to their core. I am a guest star among the adult figures in their lives. I am not the constant, the home, the place that they know they can let out all of that teenage angst and still be loved.
I know that it can be exhausting to deal with this almost-adult version of your sweet little baby. I know you worry about them so much because they have this new independence and want you to have nothing to do with it. I just want you to know that there are people in their lives that are watching them too.
I have about 75 students I see on a daily basis that I grill about their love lives, if they are driving safely, and if their weekend plans are really acceptable. When I do it, I’m just their crazy teacher that sometimes teaches from a kayak. When you ask, you are their “super controlling parent.” Rest assured, I got your back. If I think that they are going to be in the slightest bit of danger, we are going to have a serious conversation. If they seemed annoyed by a curfew or a rule, I’m going to tell them a funny story about how a curfew or the rules worked in my favor when I was younger. If I think they’re in a relationship that isn’t great, I’m going to tell them that they are worth more than what they currently have.
I know you’re scared. Parenthood is terrifying. I’ll be part of your village. Your teenager makes me so proud, and you’re the one that got them this far. Let’s get them through the rest of this weird time together. They are going to make great adults.