Understanding Your Tween

RJ is growing up so quickly each day. Looks like adolescence is taking place earlier than the past generations. Just last week, she asked me if she can grow her nails. Oh yes, she has changed a lot…her choice of music, clothes and even her hobbies. There are also times that she doesn’t listen to me because she thinks she is old enough to handle everything by herself. I undersdtand it is because she is now on her tweens, she’s experiencing not just physical but also emotional changes. I must admit, I find it difficult to adjust at first. It was hard for me to accept that the girl I used to cradle is now beginning to be independent.

Tween by the way are boys and girls who are between the ages of 9 and 12. In other words, tween is pre-adolescence…a stage of having mood swings, of developing strong will and of increasing independence. This is also the stage wherein the kids spend less time with their parents and more time with their friends. If you think that your tween trusts her friends more than you, don’t worry too much.  It is because your tween thinks that you, the parent who molded her values, abilities and talents and given her boundaries, is the least person to agree on certain issues he/she wants to talk about. Understand that your tween’s world is getting bigger and complicated. He/She feels compelled to whine about restrictions. Instead of worrying too much and nagging, why not give your tween responsibilities and allow him/her to make some decisions? You’ll be surprised that your tween can handle certain things. If your tween feels that you trust him/her, it would be easier for your tween to talk to you when something goes wrong.

Also, getting to know your tween’s friends, their parents and being involved in his/her activities will make you worry less.

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