I am 16, and may be a little young to be reading your blog, but a few friends of mine told me about it, so I thought I’d write to you. As i said, I am 16 and haven’t ever been the typical teenager. No drinking, fighting, partying, or even dating for me, I’ve been consumed with good grades and being a good person, because it’s what my parents have always pressured me to do. Now, as I enter my junior year, I am finding myself at odds with them. It may have been the group of friends I’ve had deciding to “like” boys and have them around when we go to the mall, or it may be that I told them I’d like to go to my first dance, but they’ve been increasingly strict and combative with me, often turning little disagreements into big arguments. I can’t say it is all their fault, but I try to be as peaceful as possible.
I am writing to you to ask, is this just something every child goes through and I am late, or is this my parents finally realizing that I am growing up and they’re losing their grip? I’d like to think everything will be okay.
Everything WILL be okay, I know this. No matter how “pristine” parents may view their children, there are always bound to be moments during the teenage years where the child asserts his or her own individuality and ends up wanting something the parents don’t approve of.
It sounds like your parents are rather disciplined with your upbringing and it appears as though you have no problem with this. I can only hope my daughter is as disciplined in her teen years. However, I know there will be differences between our views, and I am already learning to accept this proactively. If you can, sit your parents down and explain that you’re still the same person they have raised you to be, but you’d also like a few more freedoms. Start slowly here and explain that if they’ll grant you some basic freedoms with the things you want, you’ll promise to keep up your grades and stay out of trouble…then deliver on that promise. Not only will you show them that you’re a responsible young adult, but you’re also capable of being your own person and thinking for yourself.
I am not saying they’ll accept things with open arms after the talk, but they’ll be more open to your suggestions and it may lead to a little more freedom.