Yep, as you know from my previous post on tweens, I’ve got one and I love her more than anything. But with the tweenage years, it’s hard not to notice the changes.
Once your child hits the tween years you will notice that they have drawn up an invisible wall of privacy. Well, okay not really an invisible wall as you may suddenly find yourself facing a closed bathroom or bedroom door. They are suddenly aware of their bodies and the subtle changes that are starting to appear. They may ask you certain things about the changes that are occurring or even ask their friends.
These changes are subtle yet can be pretty hard on parents. You will suddenly feel like an intruder in your own home as you may hear an outburst of “Close my door“ or a favorite of many tweens, `Learn How to Knock“. Hearing those words can be emotionally devastating for a parent.
You may suddenly notice that your tween will no longer be interested in discussing things that took place during their school day. The answers, if any will be short and sweet, or maybe a little sharp in tone. Remember that hormones are suddenly raging through their bodies and these chemical changes can also alter their moods.
As a parent, the only thing you can do is ride out the storm. Remember to keep the communication lines open, no matter how hard it may seem. Do not try to play the parent or friend role, you are neither. You are a sounding board, that`s it. Not trying to sound harsh, the only way you can open the lines of communication during these years is to personalize the experience. What I mean by this is to take a circumstance that is happening in your tween`s life and tell them about a similar experience that happened to you when you were a tween.
By sharing your own tween experience with them, it will help them with problem-solving and how to face a challenge with a positive outlook and outcome. Remember to give them their privacy; they will turn to a parent, friend, or another adult should they have any questions.