Note to Self: On Parenting Teens

Parenting teens can be an emotional whirlwind and in the heat of the battle it is easy to forget lessons learned the hard way. So, note to self…

1. It is not your life, it’s his.

2. Your mother thought she knew what you were up to.

3. Sometimes it really is better if they don’t tell you.

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4. Only spy if you really want to know. And answer that question first.  You can’t unknow something.

5. Everything is a phase, even the good stuff.

6. When he takes your breath away, leaves you proud beyond words, find those words and tell him again and again.  He really does want your approval.

7. Life does not owe them car keys or internet or cash.  The deal was food, clothing and shelter. If needed, take everything else away.

8. Every so often go in and look at him sleeping, it will all coming rushing back.

9. Sometimes your kid’s behavior is your fault, sometimes it isn’t, really hard to tell, so don’t take all of the blame.

10. Memories are worth the mess. Always.

11. Other mothers should never make you feel bad about your kid, not matter how much bragging they do.  If you feel bad, because of what they say, shame on you.

12. He doesn’t mean it.

13. You will miss this.  Really.

14. You are the parent, he’s the child, repeat as many times as necessary.

About Grown and Flown

Mary Dell Harrington and Lisa (Endlich) Heffernan are the co-founders of Grown and Flown the #1 site for parents of teens, college students and young adults, reaching millions of parents every month. They are writers (Lisa is a New York Times bestselling author), moms, wives and friends. They started the Grown and Flown Parents Facebook Group and are co-authors of Grown and Flown: How to Support Your Teen, Stay Close as a Family, and Raise Independent Adults (Flatiron Books) now in paperback.

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