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 Post subject: Re: Hey, let's chat about our teens/tweens!
PostPosted: Mon Jan 25, 2016 5:53 pm 
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Shorty in a play. She is just a back up singer for this musical. But she has been to every rehearsal (even the ones she isn't required to be at), every set build, every technical rehearsal. ALL OF IT. And the director (a school teacher) told her the only reason she is in the play is because of her boyfriend (the assistant tech guy).
Which, ugh, who says that? This a grown asparagus man talking to a KID. She said that she will handle it the next time he is rude to her by telling him "I'm not even supposed to be here, so I'm out" and then she will go work with the tech boys.
I am trying not to helicopter mom. She says she has it under control.

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 Post subject: Re: Hey, let's chat about our teens/tweens!
PostPosted: Tue Jan 26, 2016 9:33 am 
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Ugh! That guy sounds just lovely. Sorry she has to deal with that! Especially when she's being so helpful and present.

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 Post subject: Re: Hey, let's chat about our teens/tweens!
PostPosted: Tue Jan 26, 2016 9:33 am 
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Ugh! That guy sounds just lovely. Sorry she has to deal with that! Especially when she's being so helpful and present.

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 Post subject: Re: Hey, let's chat about our teens/tweens!
PostPosted: Tue Jan 26, 2016 10:55 pm 
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And awkward visit from Shorty's boyfriends dad. Because they are having struggles at home. Which I appreciate the proactive, inclusive thing. And I have some knowledge of the uncommon issue the kid is going through.

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 Post subject: Re: Hey, let's chat about our teens/tweens!
PostPosted: Tue Feb 23, 2016 1:00 pm 
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I am about to drop some whine. I don't really need answers (we have a plan moving forward) but insight is welcome and hugs.

Alex moved back home. She is 18 and she moved out just over a year ago. We knew it was too soon. But she had a plan and was working really solidly on it.
And then 6 months ago something seemed to happen and she lost the thread. She began to do what appeared to be a rapid manic/depressive cycle (not trying to diagnose her, just saying what it looked like from the outside). One day really up and happy and the world is amazing, then next full of anger and hurt and hating everything.
I don't know all the details but I know she is home now. I have told her I believe the current life struggles are due to an undiagnosed mental health issue and that I am happy to help her get help.
Yesterday was the first day in the house and she exploded a pyrex baking dish. Because she was not paying attention. Which could happen to anyone, of course.
But she got angry that we had rules in our house. And that she had to clean up the broken glass and on and on.
We talked about how she wants her own place and I reminded her that she won't be able to sustain it if she is not caring for herself. She seemed to hear that.
It's hard watching her and knowing it's something that requires hardcore care I can't give.

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 Post subject: Re: Hey, let's chat about our teens/tweens!
PostPosted: Tue Feb 23, 2016 2:02 pm 
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That sounds hard for all of you, kfad. I think even though you can't solve all of her problems, you are totally giving her the care that she needs from you- a safe and loving place to stay, encouragement and support to seek out outside resources, those are really important types of care that not all 18 year olds get!

I also think that 1. mental health care is great, and whether or not she has a diagnosable condition, hopefully seeking treatment will be useful for her. And 2. I think it is pretty normal for teenagers, and anybody else who is on the brink of huge life changes, to have hightened emotional ups and downs.

It also took me a long time, like well into my 20s, to realize that just because I didn't succeed at my plans on the schedule I'd envisioned, didn't mean I couldn't or wouldn't get there eventually. Instead, it usually felt like I had totally FAILED at what I set out to do. (And implicitly, that I would never succeed at it in the future.) Actually, sometimes I still feel that way, but I am better at recognizing when my brain is lying to me about stuff like that.


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 Post subject: Re: Hey, let's chat about our teens/tweens!
PostPosted: Sun Mar 06, 2016 6:56 pm 
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Update: Alex got a cute little studio, is getting into counseling and is now checking in with me every day. So I feel like I can help her without attacking her.

We are moving Shorty into Alex's old room and have spent what feels like a million hours picking out paint colors. WHY IS IT SO HARD!?!?!?

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 Post subject: Re: Hey, let's chat about our teens/tweens!
PostPosted: Mon May 02, 2016 7:31 pm 
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S is at his dad's this week. Yesterday evening he texted me "I need help." As you can probably imagine my heart leaped and I though of all the terrible things that he could need help with - accident, manic friend, pregnant girlfriend. I stayed calm and texted back "With what?" It turns out (oh my god kid I could strangle you) he was at a restaurant with his girlfriend celebrating their seven month "anniversary" and when he opened the menu he found a $50 gift card tucked inside it. I told him to ask their server. She said she guessed it was their lucky day so they used $30 of it and left the rest as a tip.


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 Post subject: Re: Hey, let's chat about our teens/tweens!
PostPosted: Tue May 03, 2016 12:06 pm 
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Awwww! Arisaig, that is a lovely story!

My mom invited me to invite Shorty's boyfriend up for the week we are there. Ummm... no. My stepdad is super racist, so no. no no.

But hey, prom is this weekend!

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"Tots: the universal food band-aid... better than a mother's kiss. Healin' wounds since 1954." Meggs


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 Post subject: Re: Hey, let's chat about our teens/tweens!
PostPosted: Thu May 26, 2016 1:29 pm 
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I have a weekly girls night, every Thursday.
Today's is supposed to be my birthday party.
Only Shorty springs on me that she has a concert tonight. The last one and she has a solo.
I have heard nothing of this at all. She has not spoken to me almost at all since we told her about surgery.
So I cancelled my plans and she is now telling me how bad I made her feel.

15 is the worst.

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"Tots: the universal food band-aid... better than a mother's kiss. Healin' wounds since 1954." Meggs


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 Post subject: Re: Hey, let's chat about our teens/tweens!
PostPosted: Sat May 28, 2016 11:33 am 
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Ugh, kfad, I can feel both sides of that situation. Sorry you missed your birthday party - happy birthday!


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 Post subject: Re: Hey, let's chat about our teens/tweens!
PostPosted: Wed Jun 01, 2016 11:38 am 
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I don't want to derail the "toddler feeding" thread.
So... why do teens never eat the things you fix for them? Is it just mine? Have I created monsters who turn down perfectly good food for gas station jo-jos?
Her friends all love our food.

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"Tots: the universal food band-aid... better than a mother's kiss. Healin' wounds since 1954." Meggs


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 Post subject: Re: Hey, let's chat about our teens/tweens!
PostPosted: Wed Jun 01, 2016 3:13 pm 
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I think it's normal for kids to take for granted what they have at home and want other things, no matter the circumstance sometimes. I used to trade a girl at school my bagel and cream cheese for her lunchables. And I dated a boy whose mom is the best cook I know, her food is so delicious and she makes dinner every night, and most of her kids would rather eat frozen chicken nuggets and other bland things.

Sometimes we grow up and realize how excellent we had it though. I miss my mom's breaded fried zucchini so much.


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 Post subject: Re: Hey, let's chat about our teens/tweens!
PostPosted: Wed Jun 01, 2016 4:55 pm 
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My mom used to make homemade bread every single week and I would whine and whine for square sandwich bread from a store like everyone else had. Now I really wish someone baked me bread every week.

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 Post subject: Re: Hey, let's chat about our teens/tweens!
PostPosted: Wed Jun 01, 2016 7:51 pm 
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I ate morningstar grillers with fake bacon and cheese pretty much every night instead of my mom's healthy vegetable filled meals. My mom is a great cook and I love when she cooks for me now. I was just kind of a little shiitake and I just wanted crepe. I guess when you're a teen you finally have some say over what your own life, so you want to make whatever choices you can.

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 Post subject: Re: Hey, let's chat about our teens/tweens!
PostPosted: Thu Jun 02, 2016 11:23 am 
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Chompy is having a rough time (all of his own making). At his school they have a community service requirement: in 7th grade you're supposed to do 5 hours of documented community service (which is defined pretty broadly, I think), and then in 8th grade five more.

He didn't do it last year, so this year he needs to do 10 hours. If he doesn't get it done, he can't attend his graduation ceremony or the big 8th grade party.

He has spent 3 hours tutoring the girl who lives next door. (She's been attending non-school all this time, but has decided she wants to go to a regular school for 7th grade next year. She has a ton of catching up to do. She and Chompy get along great, and he really likes teaching, so it's a great fit.)

He found out yesterday that he has until tomorrow to finish his community service. He had thought (or had been told by a teacher) that he'd have another 2 weeks. There is no way he will complete his 10 hours. So now he's really upset. (And mad at us, of course. Because we, um... are parents? We're blame magnets, basically.) I hate seeing him upset and embarrassed and worrying about what his friends will say and what his teachers will think. But this is all his doing. It still sucks, though.

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 Post subject: Re: Hey, let's chat about our teens/tweens!
PostPosted: Fri Jun 03, 2016 8:51 am 
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It's so hard sometimes to let them deal with the consequences of their behavior. Even if it's not fully their fault. It's been really hard to do that with the big two.

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Don't mind my breasts and vagina, I'm a gay man.---Idatetatooedguys.

"Tots: the universal food band-aid... better than a mother's kiss. Healin' wounds since 1954." Meggs


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 Post subject: Re: Hey, let's chat about our teens/tweens!
PostPosted: Fri Jul 01, 2016 8:37 pm 
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I don't have all the details, but the principal of chompy's high school (he starts there in September) is saying he's going to eliminate all honors classes.

chompy has been in the advanced track ("accelerated," "highly capable"—the names keep changing) since 1st grade. They work about two grades ahead. So now, because it's "not fair" that some kids are capable of advanced work, chompy will sit in high school classes where he learns material he's already learned? Or where everything goes so slowly that he's bored to tears? (He was already pretty bored.) I can't even imagine what his high school experience will be like. I hope the principal doesn't go through with this plan.

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 Post subject: Re: Hey, let's chat about our teens/tweens!
PostPosted: Fri Jul 01, 2016 8:47 pm 
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Sounds like my experience. It was hell. Fingers crossed.

The philosophy when I was in school was that more advanced kids should help struggling kids.

There is actually a lot of research that shows that tracking is not beneficial. Which is true, but only for everybody else--the advanced kids suffer.

If they go through with this, I would investigate early graduation programs run in conjunction with the community colleges. I ended up getting a standard diploma and graduating early by taking my last year of classes at the community college. It was the best thing ever for me.

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 Post subject: Re: Hey, let's chat about our teens/tweens!
PostPosted: Fri Jul 01, 2016 9:13 pm 
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He's already scheduled to start taking math at a community college starting in 11th grade, when he will have finished high school math.

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 Post subject: Re: Hey, let's chat about our teens/tweens!
PostPosted: Fri Jul 01, 2016 10:33 pm 
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Another option is taking the GED and then going to community college. Washington State is one that allows students to take the GED at 16 with some sort of permission. Here, it is sadly 18.

I'm very biased in favor of getting achieving kids the hell out of public high schools ASAP. Being a teacher has only increased my strong feelings on this. Even in AP classes, they are just wasting time. AP classes are definitely not college level, whatever anybody says, especially for math and science.'
Eta: my community college had a mandatory weekly study group seminar thing for younger/high school age students. That was nice. Mostly I just found it a relief not to have the bullshiitake high school social stuff to deal with.

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 Post subject: Re: Hey, let's chat about our teens/tweens!
PostPosted: Fri Jul 01, 2016 11:05 pm 
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How did chompy's community service go? I hope he was able to go to his graduation...

And the new plan sounds awful. I switched from an awesome co-ed private school in Vienna to a Catholic girls school in NJ and spent the last 2 years of my high school doing stuff I already knew or "independent study" in the library. And it was really bad for me, because I got so arrogant and out of practice, and then when I started college, math and science hit me like a mack truck. Because yes, HS AP science is not the same as college science. I had done chem and physics at a local Catholic college while in HS and even that hadn't prepared me for real science at Rutgers.

I hope you can find a better solution for chompy!

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 Post subject: Re: Hey, let's chat about our teens/tweens!
PostPosted: Sat Jul 02, 2016 2:14 am 
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chompy's community service: after the supposed deadline, the school said kids could score however many extra hours by helping out on a Saturday with weeding, planting, etc. So chompy did that and solo neighborhood trash cleanup to make up the difference.

But because he hadn't completed his community service by the original deadline, he didn't submit his permission slip for the 8th grade cruise/party, so they wouldn't let him go. Then he decided he didn't want to go to graduation, even though his completed community service made him eligible.

I quit.

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 Post subject: Re: Hey, let's chat about our teens/tweens!
PostPosted: Wed Jul 06, 2016 11:37 am 
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That is awful about the accelerated/honors/whatever classes. I think if that were to happen to us, I would just have Shorty do her GED or an online class to graduate early.
On that note, Shorty has all AP classes, save band and dance. Her counselor told her to her face that it would be too hard for most girls to do all that. Shorty promptly asked for a different counselor.

And she broke up with the boy. It's been angsty break up music week at my house. Please someone save me.

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 Post subject: Re: Hey, let's chat about our teens/tweens!
PostPosted: Fri Jul 29, 2016 11:43 am 
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My baby is now 16. 16!

They are all grown up.

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"Tots: the universal food band-aid... better than a mother's kiss. Healin' wounds since 1954." Meggs


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