A friend of mine posted today that teenagers can be miserable, and while I know what she means on a logical level, I have to say, mine are not. My two teenage sons are wonderful, delightful, tender, compassionate, intelligent, funny as hell people. A few days ago, my 16 year old was looking at me and I said, What's up? He said, you guys are just wonderful parents. I really don't take the time to notice it but you are. You love us so much and make us feel safe.
Heady praise, eh?
Just now, my 19 yr old looked at me and said, You are an amazing friend to people, Mom. Thanks for teaching us that with your example.
I know that teens have a reputation in today's culture for being temperamental, and confused, and grouchy, and moody . . . and sometimes they are, but then, sometimes I am too. Teenage years are so tough. They aren't children anymore and yet they aren't really adults either. They live in limbo, dealing with changing viewpoints on life, hormones, a pressure to make decisions about the future, hormones, complicated relationships with friends, hormones, and trying to find their place in the world--plus hormones. I am surprised they don't go insane actually.
As their mom, I try to balance listening with guiding, loving with advising, and empathizing with nudging. And never, not once, have I thought these young people in my house were miserable. I just love, love, love them and provide a willing ear, open arms, and usually a wise ass comment. So far, so good.