Raising children seems to get harder each year. As they grow up, they’re faced with peer pressure and may become friends with people we may prefer they aren’t friends with. With teenage sons it’s bad enough, but raising a teenage daughter in today’s world may seem nearly impossible.
If your daughter hasn’t reached her teens yet, you may want to do everything you can to prepare yourself for it now. There will be some major changes in the coming years and you need to know what to expect.
Try to think back to when you were your daughter’s age and all of the things you felt and thought at the time. Remember how you thought your parents were clueless? It’s quite possible your daughter thinks the same thing about you. But she also has to face some problems you didn’t have to deal with.
No matter how frustrated you get with your daughter, do your best to keep communication lines open. Expect there to be conflicts over any number of subjects: boys, clothes, and friends. Try to listen to her opinions and remember what it was like to be her age.
Take time to meet any boy she dates. Get to know him, explain your views, and give her specific rules to follow while dating no matter how archaic she may feel they are. Honestly, she wants limitations because they show her that you love her.
Let her know how you feel about her possibly becoming sexually active. Tell her that you want to answer her questions rather than her finding out about sex and its consequences the hard way.
You’ll probably also bump heads about what your daughter wears. Fashion has changed dramatically since you were your daughter’s age. Hollywood and New York dictate what is fashionable and let’s be honest, quite a bit of it is barely there and looks trashy. Try to compromise on clothing, but stick to your values as much as possible. It is possible for your daughter to dress modestly in today’s society, but you may have to spend extra time shopping to find the right clothes.
It’s quite possible that the friends your daughter has have been with her for many years. They may have met during grade school and grown up together. If this is the case, you most likely know her friends. If she’s recently made new friends, it would be a good idea to develop a relationship with them as well. Invite her friends over so you can learn about them and their values. Encourage friends you know, and make it a point to get to know new ones.
Raising a teenage daughter in today’s world may be more effort than you’re prepared for. Reach down inside, remember how you felt as a teen, and keep talking with your daughter. Try to meet on common ground, remember your love for each other, and you should be fine.