“So, how was your Mom’s Day?” I asked Sara, calling her last night right before I snuggled into bed with my book.
“Well,” she said and then took a long pause. “I got a dream and a nightmare Mother’s Day gift.”
“A dream and a nightmare? What did Ashleigh give you — your ex, now that he’s the ‘perfect’ catch?”
“Yeah, right! Actually, we went for brunch at Sam’s, and she and I had a great talk.”
“If your teen talks to you, that is pretty amazing. I’m guessing that’s the dream part.”
“The nightmare is what she said.”
“Oh, no — is she pregnant?”
“No, thank God! But, she’s under crazy pressure.”
“Well, then this is high school times 10. Her best friends have a bad case of senioritis. Now that they’re gotten into their colleges and school’s almost over, all they want to do is party on the weekends. And these are the good kids! She doesn’t want to, besides the fact that she can’t because of her bipolar. So she’s really struggling
— do what everyone else is and get blitzed, or spend the last few months of high school and then summer as a loner.”
“That’s so tough, Sara; I’m sorry.”
“What’s Trent doing?”
What is he doing indeed! I think I know what he’s doing, but the teen years aren’t exactly the most honest years. Although he shares some things
with me, he’s still a teenager — I’m sure he’s keeping a lot private, too. I did; didn’t you?
My philosophy is innocent until proven guilty. But I’m not above smelling breath and fingertips and calling parents about parties and generally being present (aka nosy). I don’t look through his cellphone texts, but I’m not above that if I
And that’s the hard part of parenting — well, on top of all the other hard parts plus trying to keep them alive! At some point, our kids are thrust into a world that we’ve tried to keep them sheltered from since they were born. Drugs. Booze. Sex. Even if they’re not interested in indulging — either because we’ve done our job as parents, or they’re focused on other things or some combination of that — they can become social outcasts if their friends suddenly become interested.
When you’re that age, your friends mean everything. And, it’s not that easy to make new friends in high school, period, let alone when you’re five weeks away from graduating.
And even though they’ll be off to college soon and making new friends, the binge-drinking rate for freshmen is pretty high — especially for kids who drank heavily in high school. Along with that comes some pretty nasty stuff — rape, pregnancy, drunken driving. Death.
- How do you guide a teen who’s trying to do the right thing when all her friends around her aren’t?
- How much do you know about your teen’s private life?
- Is it OK for parents to look at their kids’ cellphone texts and Facebook page?
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