Connecting you to everyone you need to help raise your child.
Can you first finish your homework and then head down to play? “Chill” I will. I hear that almost every day in my home. That’s my (just) 8-year-old talking to me.
A minute later, you can hear her say “Ok fine, I will just do it.” I take a deep breath and tell myself, “The hormones are here.”
As a mother in a moment I go through anger, anguish, doubt my parenting skills (a few times in a day), and probably end it with sadness. I am told I shouldn't be.
The onset of such behaviour is not my fault. With teenage years not very far away, the kids are starting to have a mind of their own and doing it their way. We did it too. But it’s probably a bit more with the growing influence of the internet and peers, thereby pushing the parents away from them way earlier than probably when we did it.
But don’t worry it’s not as bad either. I see moments when she just wants to hug and cuddle me and these are times when I see her talents and interests emerge as she comes into her own.
This may not be the right time to be your child’s friend. You will be surprised, but they are actually looking at you for help to get them through this confusing stage. They also take their cues on how to handle a situation seeing you.
As a parent this is the time to pick your battles. The rules in my home have changed with the growing independence. I would rather have my kid do ‘right’ instead of ‘wrong’, be honest, get good grades and not sweat over the untidy room or weird taste of clothes.
I try to communicate as clearly and as calmly as I can as soon as any unacceptable behaviour begins.
The stickers and stars no longer work. Even the time-out is passé. Strangely I have never till date had to give ‘time out’ to both my girls. So now at this stage to punish them is a struggle for me. For some kids the punishment way works and for some, it may be a good heart-to-heart talk.
You know your kid best.
It’s important for me that the kid recognises that I am a person too and it hurts. This needs to work both ways. As a parent I have always given my kid an ear to listen and expected the same vice versa. You may in an emotional argument interrupt your kid- I always apologise for doing that.
Remember they learn from your acts!
We often have heated arguments (ranging on various issues- friends, play dates, activities) and there are times when it goes out of control. I always try to step back and let things calm down.
We can never forget that we are the grown-up in this relationship- so ensure this doesn’t go out of control.
I enjoy my one-to-one conversations I have with each of my girls (8 years and 3 years). It may be at any time of the day (when they get back from school, meal times, some post meal chats). It’s important to have a focused conversation with your kid. Sometimes cut the routine and go ahead for that impromptu walk or breakfast and let the tween do the talking.
I find moments when I may be working on my computer, and she may just want to tell me about an argument she had with her best buddy.
As much as you may think that your tween wants to be alone and independent, they will keep looking for that safety net. I have seen simple moments we spend as a family have gone a long way in keeping us bonded.
A random morning cycling, an afternoon at the beach, a trail or even the time spent baking, cooking together, playing indoor games or also on the Xbox.
No phones, no iPads (and that rule applies to the parents as well). This has done wonders to the relationship.
A former communications consultant, she currently doodles away her time writing. As a mother of two girls, she believes life is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you're gonna get!!
Gallery Parenting Parenting Advice by BRAND'S® AlphaMynd