What’s Great and Challenging about Being a “Tween?”

This month I talked to “tweens” and their parents about the joys and challenges of pre-adolescence. Here’s a summary of what they said:

WHAT DO YOU LOVE ABOUT THIS AGE?

PARENTS

It’s great to watch my 11 year old turn into their own person with new ideas and opinions.

I enjoy watching my child develop deeper relationships with friends, their conversations are fuller, richer.

Seeing a growing sense of independence and self confidence with more interest in trying new things.

Sometimes I have more time to do things without my child in tow.

We can enjoy each other’s company in new ways.

CHILDREN

I’m more independent.

It’s nice to be in school with older children.

There are lots of interesting things to do and now I’m older, stronger and big enough to do them.

I get to see more movies and shows now that I’m better prepared for them.

WHAT’S CHALLENGING ABOUT THIS AGE?

PARENTS

The fights and sudden mood swings. One moment they’re yelling and being sarcastic like a teen and the next minute they’re cuddling and wanting a story. It’s wild.

My child is pushing back more. There’s more of a “Why should I do what you want?” attitude with more “nos” and sometimes an unwillingness to talk things through or listen to a logical explanation.

CHILDREN

There is lots of homework pressure and I end up getting a lot of school stress.

There are more responsibilities and expectations at home and school.
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