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Andrew Birkhead
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Teenage Angst

Posted on January 22, 2008 in: Blogging as Therapy, Parenting by Andrew Birkhead

I’m the parent of a delightful 14 year old young woman. The good news is that she talks to me. She still tells her dad the important things in her life. It’s amazing! The bad news is that these things are often very negative. Sometimes it bums me out and I just can’t take it anymore.

This happened again this morning. I drove her to the bus stop and waited with her. It gave us about 10 minutes to talk. I got to hear about how crappy school is, how people mistreat her, and how the best part of the day is going home. My answer to the blessing of her sharing her life with me? Shaming messages about how she should be more positive! My fear is that if I continue this behavior, she may stop sharing her life with me.

What I want, and hold on it’s not healthy, is to have it both ways! I want a daughter who shares with me AND I want her to be like me, trying really hard to be positive!

With that said, my parenting work is to welcome her connection and EVERYTHING that comes with it. My vow is that when I take on negative messages, to examine why I’m taking them on instead of telling her to stop.

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