Being a mom of three children is inherently different than being a mom of two children and even more different than being a mom of one! I suppose that if you have children who are close in age range, it might make a bit of difference in terms of how they get along. When you have children with big age gaps like mine; I find myself being pulled in a million different directions all at once. My oldest is almost 14, my middle child is 9 and my youngest is 7 months old! This journey is certainly proving to be more challenging than I ever imagined it could be. The real challenge though is having a teenager for a daughter. Below are the 6 things I’ve learned since mothering a teenager.
Everything I Say Is Wrong
I could tell her she’s the most beautiful girl on the planet and she would translate that to mean “You are not the most beautiful girl in the universe though!” I find that the communication between us is almost nonexistent. Either I’m talking too much according to her or I’m not listening enough. In my opinion, it’s she who is doing too much talking and not enough listening. When I try to find a delicate balance; I can’t. Her teenage logic and hormones won’t allow it.
Chores Are Cruel and Unusual Punishment
My children have all had the same rules since they could walk and talk. Clean up your bedroom, clean up after yourself, do your chores as assigned! These days you’d think I was a dictator. “It’s not fair!” she says. “No one else has to do this!” (Clearly, she means no one else in the very small universe she’s constructed around herself.) God forbid she make a mess and *gasp* I expect her to clean it up! When I take away her privileges as a direct result of her actions (because you know, consequences); she tells me she doesn’t understand the connection.
My Reproductive Organs Are Her Business
Oh yes, you’ve read that right. She totally believes that my decision to have more children should have been contingent on her desire to be an only child. She often expresses that things would be SO much different if I had just not had my middle son. I agree with her, and inform her that yes she is correct. She would then be the only child responsible for the chores in the house. That line of reasoning usually keeps her quiet for, o I’ll say, a whole five minutes.
My Sex Life Should Be Nonexistent
Yep. We’ll toss that right up there with my reproductive organs. The bottom line is, I’m not going to stop having a sex life because I have children. Clearly, because more kids came after the first. “Go to bed,” I say. “But I’m not tired!” she says. And then when she hears the muffled sounds of mom and dad’s moments of happiness, “You’re so gross!” she exclaims. In these moments I gloat a little when I tell her, “Well I told you to go to bed.”
Mom Equals a Never Ending Line of Credit
Whether it’s necessities like toiletries or something as outlandish as a unicorn on Jupiter; my child believes I should fund it. She thinks nothing of asking for $150.00 for this class due or $50.00 for this ONE outfit. When I begin the task of explaining the fundamentals of paychecks such as taxes, health insurance and adhering to a budget; she conveniently does not hear me.
I Look Forward to When My Child Marries and Has Children of Her Own
This last one is like coming full circle of life. When I was a raggedy teenanger (teenager; that started as a typo but I’m beginning to like it); my mom would shake her fist in prophecy. “I hope your kids act just like you!” I would roll my eyes and mumble how I was not having any kids. Oh, how my mom laughs maniacally now after she comforts me when I call her pulling my hair out. I realize now, how much I myself look forward, quite gleefully might I add, to the day my daughter has gone off to have her own family. Not because I want to rush her youth or my freedom *heh heh heh*; rather because I know that is the time she will truly understand. She will understand all my tears, investment, lectures, hugs, kisses, and discipline.
In the end, I guess understanding is really what we both want.
How about you mamas of teenage girls; what are some things you’ve learned about yourself? Leave a comment below or come chat with us on Facebook!