Nearly two years ago I wrote a blog that surprised me as it resulted in the largest response I had ever had. The topic? This blog resulted in almost comments, from parents and teens alike! I honestly can say I did not expect such a huge response. But I was so happy to touch upon a subject that clearly needed to be talked about. I sure hope I helped some parents and teens with this difficult conversation.
That's why kids this age are called preteens or tweens. Their world is getting bigger on every level: physical, mental, emotional and social. Buckle up, things may get bumpy. Because their voice is deepening.
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At 12, puberty could be in full swing. For some, it starts earlier.
It's a time for deodorant, growth spurts and emerging sexual awareness. Thanks to puberty, they're paying more attention to their body.
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They're more focused on how they look and what they're wearing. They may express an interest in ing a gym or start exercising in their room.
They're also concerned about what other kids think of them. This may change the way they act and expresses affection toward you, especially in front of their friends. Their emotions seesaw.
They often goes from happy to sad, kind to rude, feeling smart to feeling short on confidence. They may also feel more stress because schoolwork is getting challenging. This goes hand in hand with their expanding vocabulary. They're better at putting what they're feeling into words, which you might see as a blessing and a curse. This can be a confusing age for both of you, because they've starting to look and act more like an adult, but they don't have the same life experience and decision-making skills.
Sometimes you may both need a reminder that they're still a year-old. Their social life is more important to them. This is when peer pressure starts to sneak in.
At 12, it's important to them to belong, which means more independence from you and more dependence on their friends. Monitor their media use closely: Many boys play online video games, so review privacy settings and ensure personal information is not shared with other gamers.
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You should set limits on the amount of their daily media usage. Though it may not seem like it, your love and acceptance are still important to them. They may be pouty and self-centered, which can lead to lots of reactions instead of positive actions from both of you. But they need to know you see them for who they are, and that you're there to support them as they figure out who they're becoming.
1. get emotional distance from the situation
Ask questions. Be honest.
This is especially important when it comes to discussions around tobaccodrinking, drugs and sex. What do they know about them? What do they think about them? Without blame or shame, share the dangers and consequences of each plus your thoughts and feelings. Remember: Puberty can be a time of massive mood swings. It's normal for them to feel sad, but only for a short while.
Depression lasts longer and plays out in multiple ways, including eating disorders and drug use.
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Keep your finger on the pulse of what's happening at school. Meet their friends. Talk with their parents. Stay in the loop on their grades and performance before the report card comes home. Poor grades can mean anything from a learning disability and behavior issues to a simple visit to the eye doctor for some new glasses or contacts.
How do i cope with the stress?
Talk to them about the way they present themselves online and the effect it can have on college applications, future employment and more. Remind them that once an image or content is shared it can be used by the recipient in many different ways.
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Continued Stay Involved Though it may not seem like it, your love and acceptance are still important to them. Stay present in their life; don't fade into the background because that's what you think they want. If they're showing interest in a new sport or hobby, encourage them. If they're putting in effort at home or school, offer up some praise.
2. be clear with yourself what your own values are
Be clear about your boundaries when it comes to grades, chores and screen time. When there's conflict, model healthy arguments by respecting their feelings and opinions. Could I have CAD? Missing Teeth?