What happened?! I had a sweet and kind child who rarely fought and listened well. OK, who am I kidding?! It may have been a gradual process, but does sometimes I feel like all of a sudden I have an angsty tween.
Eye-rolling, back-talking, sassy and overly emotional; the joy’s of tweenhood are unlimited. It really is such a fun age. I hope you can hear my sarcasm. Daily I say to myself, “How will I make it through the next seven years of having a tween/teenager?!” It is truly incredible the change from little child to crazy tween.
The hormones are pretty nuts. Having a girl, of course, makes tweenhood more interesting, but I also have a fairly emotional child, to begin with. There have been many crying episodes for basically no reason. My husband and I have a running joke of throwing chocolate at the tween when the tears start up. I ask what is wrong and she cries that she doesn’t know why she is crying. It is hilarious, but I also understand as a woman.
Her body is changing! It is scary and fun, also annoying. We have to fight a bit about bra-wearing. Teaching modesty has been interesting so far. We don’t argue over clothes, but more with understanding when a shirt is too thin and a camisole or bra is appropriate. She also started wearing deodorant. The best story was when my tween said her armpits smelled like sandwiches. Meat. Sandwiches. My husband, love him, sniffed them. Imagine the reaction of disgust and you betcha they do not smell like sandwiches! I died laughing.
But tweens can be so fun, too. We had a sleepover recently, five girls including my tweeny. They giggled and giggled; it was incredible. Such good kids! Shout out to my dance mom friends!! We ate ice cream, chatted in our pop-up camper, came inside to watch a movie, ate popcorn and chips, played Uno during the movie, got bored and got ready for bed. It was a great time! The only minor hiccup was one kid took another’s sleeping spot. Even that was not a big deal. This was completely different than the sleepover we had at age seven.
Tweens are self-sufficient. My kiddo has been packing her own lunch for years. Of course, we struggled with food choices, so I nearly gave up and had her pack her own lunch. We do healthy choices and it works out great for her to have this task. She is better at getting ready in the morning than I am! Getting dressed takes longer, especially when we feud over undergarments. Thankfully that is a bit rare, especially since it’s summertime. She still needs reminders but is good at completing tasks on her own.
The biggest change from child to tween has been the attitude. This is a major adjustment in our parental ability to not lose our cool when our tween is pushing every button she knows. My husband and I struggle sometimes to not just react to her ‘tude. We do our best to give warnings and make punishments reflective to whatever behavior we are trying to correct. Most of the time taking away electronics or screen time is the only punishment.
There are, of course, wonderful moments of parenting a tween. We have many fun conversations, discuss ideas and theories, not just cartoons and video games. Her mind is incredible, she cracks us up almost daily with what she comes up with. My tween has an amazing sense of humor. Need I remind you about thy the sandwich armpits?! She might kill me for that one. Actually, I discussed blogging with her before I wrote anything. She reads my posts before I submit them as well. I respect my tween and work on teaching her to continue respecting me and her dad.
Parenting a tween is an incredible journey, I hope you enjoyed my snippet of our life. Comment with your funny story or parenting wins with your tween!!