Excerpts from Bree’s articles on FamilyCircle.com
Near-constant peer pressure parents didn’t experience as teens
Every time they hit refresh on their social media, which according to the Washington Post is on average of 9 hours per day (meaning they are scrolling or refreshing hundreds of times per day) they are comparing and valuing themselves based on others. Each time a teen opens an app they are met with emotions across the board, a burst of highs and lows all within a few seconds. Anxieties about if people liked a photo, or if their friends are out doing something without them, or if there’s a negative comment on their pic.
Read the full article with facts and helpful info HERE
Right around spring of high school freshman year, it seems the transition happens in which kids suddenly have full-blown adult expectations as measures of success.
With standardized testing, huge class sizes, competitive college applications, and social media comparisons of test scores, the pressure seems to be piling up. It used to be the kids at the prep schools who had tons of pressure on them, or the kids taking the advanced classes who felt the pressure, not every kid. Is it just me or do some teens have busier calendars than adults today?
Teenagers are an interesting group. They are in a version of an adult body, but they are still kids. Research shows that most brains aren’t fully developed until we are 25, so even though teens want to be treated like adults and do their own thing, they aren’t ready for that. They still need their parents.
The problem is teens don’t like to talk to us, and we tend to take it personally. It can be frustrating when answers to “how was your day?” range from “fine” to “I don’t know,” or even the dredged shoulder shrug.
Before I had kids, I knew exactly how to parent. I would look at toddlers throwing fits in restaurants and think “can’t those parents control them? I would never allow that.”
I would never was a common thought in my head. Before you have kids it’s easy to say how you will do it, until you are in the thick of colic, kids who say “no” to you no matter how many times you say that’s not okay, and the mind-of-their-own tween and teen years.
Moms, do you ever feel so overwhelmed by the piled up yuckiness in life that you don’t know how you are making it through the day, but don’t have time to self-evaluate and take time for emotional health? We can live on autopilot and in “go go go” mode so much that sometimes it takes a slap in our faces (metaphorically) to realize we need to take inventory of how we are living our everyday lives. My wake-up call came in the form of an Apple Store Genius, who played the role of therapist to me the other day.
My intentions are pure. I love my son, and I want him to succeed. The facts are that our teens are new to this big decision stuff, and they DO need our guidance (but probably not the way I was doing it, which may have been… well let’s say…. pushy!).
Over time I’ve come to realize that it may be a better lesson to teach our kids to grow and learn from their mistakes, rather than prevent them from happening. I recently saw a cartoon that reminded me that mistakes are bound to happen, and successful people know how to use them as stairs, rather than weights holding them down.
Excerpt from FamilyCircle.com by Bree Jensen
Prom night. It’s what our kids have been waiting to experience for years. Remember yours? It was nothing like today’s prom. It’s no longer just a dance. Along with the night comes expectations for parties, possibly drugs and alcohol, and, let’s just say it, sex.
As parents, every decision is tough. The choice to track our children on prom night is no exception. We want them to have the time of their lives while also avoiding actions that could compromise their health or future in any way. Today’s teens experience a lot more pressure than parents because of social media.
What Can We Do?