Having a 'tween is hard, and I imagine have a teenager is going to be even harder, but maybe all the drama will be over by then! Hey, I can hope! I'm finding that one of the hardest parts of dealing with these difficult tween years is that families handle issues differently, and that can affect the whole family - not just the kids. My relationships have been changing because of what has been going on with the kids, but, I guess, I'm not surprised. We're all very involved with our kids. I don't know if that's just because we're homeschooling families, or not. I know I dealt with so much of the same drama with my friends when I was growing up, but I never talked to my parents about it.
I remember in 4th or 5th grade a girl named Madonna started a club, and she decided she didn't want me in it, so every day at recess and lunch I had to sit alone because everyone else was allowed in the club. It was hell. And there was always girls talking bad about other girls, and being mean, just for shits and giggles. Junior high was even worse - the worst two years, ever! I was in the "popular" group, but it was not fun. Our "leader" was not a nice girl, and she would always be picking on one of us. She had bullies be mean to us - I would get shoved up against my locker, often, by the bullies. There were many days when I was scared to go to school. Or she would decide that no one in our group was allowed to talk to one member...for no reason, at all - she just enjoyed being mean. And you never knew when she was going to pick you, but when she did it was awful. No one would talk me, or look at me, and it would be a very, lonely few days. So many things like this happened, but I never mentioned anything to my parents, and I have no idea why, but it's not like that with my kids.
My girls tell me everything, so when they are hurt, upset, worried, mad - anything - I know about it, and, of course, I get involved because they are asking for my help. Sometimes I just try to guide them so they can work it out alone, but sometimes that doesn't work, so I have to step in, and, at times, even that doesn't help the situation because here's the thing.....all families are different. How I'm raising my kids is not how other people are raising their kids, and vice versa. Do I think I'm doing it right? Of course! Do they think they're doing it right? Of course! What works for some, doesn't work for others, so every family is going to deal with issues in their own way, and our ways are not always going to be same, so how I expect my kids to handle a problem is not always going to be how another parent wants their kids to handle the same problem, and that's hard, but it's unavoidable. So, all I can do is guide my girls in my way, and, also, help them to understand that other families have different ways of doing things, and that their way is not wrong - it's just not how we do things.
There's been a bit of drama going on the last few months (or year...or two) - some of it my kid created (which I have no problem admitting), and some of it other kids created, but, I think, my girl and I are, finally, getting a hold on it. She's been working hard the last couple weeks at not being so sensitive about stuff, and to not be looking for issues that aren't there, and we've been talking alot about how to deal with her friends when they are behaving in a way that she can't control. She's going to try hard to remember that she can only control herself and her actions, so I have hope that things are going to be better.
At times, I envy the totally, oblivious parents out there that have no idea what is going on in their children's lives because I know life would be less stressful if I was one of those parents, BUT, for the most part, I'm glad that I have such a close relationship with my girls, and that they want to share everything with me, and I'm happy that they realize I'm always here for them.