Why you should be thankful for your teenagers

I’ve heard a lot of words associated with parenting teenagers. Exasperating. Frustrating. Confusing. Very rarely do I hear someone exclaim, “I’m SO happy to be raising a teenager right now!” If I do hear it, it’s generally dripping with sarcasm.

But the reality is that teenagers really are quite a bit of fun, and they embody some lessons we would all do well to learn. So this Thanksgiving month, spend some time reflecting on what makes your teenagers wonderful and why they are actually a huge blessing in your life.

Come on. I’ll help you out.

  • Teenagers keep your argumentative skills honed. You have to be sharp in your thinking and your decisions, or they will call you on it. They will ask why until you want to strangle them. But be grateful, because they’re forcing you to ask yourself why, and I don’t think we do that enough. A little introspection never hurt anyone.
  • Teenagers are still children in a lot of ways. They will say things that will crack you up. They still take joy in the seemingly small moments. Their silliness and appreciation for all things farcical make them great fun to watch comedies with, crack jokes with, and laugh at extended family members with. One year over the holidays, my teens started a quote list for a particularly “interesting” family member visiting from out of town. They kept the list in a kitchen drawer. When the annoyances threatened to bring out the worst in us and the week was beginning to stretch everyone’s nerves a little too thin, one of us would depart to the kitchen, open the quote list drawer, and laugh. I never would have thought to do that on my own. Leave it to the teenage brain to create a unique escape from visitor stress.
  • Teenagers are adults in a lot of ways. They are sensitive, can be thoughtful when they want to be, and understand way more than you realize. You can talk to them, even about the big stuff. They can be wise and offer new perspectives.
  • Teenagers love you and need you. They don’t show it all the time (that’s what dogs are for), and they may not say it, either. Heck, they may not even realize it. But every time they sit next to you at dinner, ask you for advice, tell you a story about their friends, or even shuffle into the kitchen in their PJ’s, they’re telling you that they trust you, that you offer them a safe haven, and that they even enjoy your company.
  • Teenagers keep us young. They blast all the latest, greatest hits, dance the Nae Nae, talk about their Boos, and remind us what it was like to fall in love, become yearbook editor, and earn an “A.” We watch them play sports and it takes us back to our glory days. They introduce us to new technology, download apps on our phones, and make sure we don’t wear anything embarrassing. Without them – let’s face it – we’d be stuck in the past.

So you see, you have a lot to be grateful for when it comes to raising teens. They may wear you out, but they also build you up and bring joy to your life. Enjoy them now, because in a few years, you’ll be hoping and praying that they’ll be home for Thanksgiving.

Having trouble seeing the bright side with your teens? Let me help you! Check out my book Teenagers 101.

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4 thoughts on “Why you should be thankful for your teenagers

  1. Hi Rebecca, it has been many months since I last checked out your blog (let alone keeping my own up-to-date)! I’d like to congratulate you on your book ‘Teenagers 101’. Is this your first book? Nevertheless, it must be a very satisfying feeling to have been offering much advice and guidance for a time via your blog to now put all that valuable knowledge and expertise into a book. The reviews are fabulous – well done!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you so much! Yes, this is my first non-fiction book on parenting. I really enjoyed writing it and I’m thrilled to see it getting good reviews, especially from parents. Thanks so much for checking it out and for your kind words.

      Like

  2. I am aspiring to start writing blogs but I wasn’t sure of what but this post’s content and presentation has led a spark in me. Thanks for the information you have provided in your blog as it proved to be very helpful for me in start writing my own blogs you have provided in this blog as it proved to be very helpful to me.

    Like

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