My teenager is trying to kill me. I can’t recall the exact moment my sweet, loving boy turned into a testosterone fueled, raging teenager. But, somewhere along the way it happened. I’m fairly certain the majority of the grey hairs I count every day are gaining ground in direct correlation to each day we’ve spent in this phase. My stress level is beyond measure. My blood pressure has reached an all-time high. I can only conclude that my 15 year old son stays awake at night plotting ways to torment me.
Ok, full disclosure here: I wasn’t the easiest teenager on earth either. In my family, I was the child that managed to find ways to get myself into trouble. My older brother generally towed the line. But, obviously, I was a teenage GIRL. Like most teenage girls, my hormones took over and drama ensued. I was bitchy and moody sometimes (ok…a lot) and tears would fly at random over any and all sorts of what I perceived as transgressions against me. I mastered the art of the door slam, until my father threatened to remove my door from the hinges. THIS I (sort of) know how to deal with. Teenage boys…WHOA…they are a creature all of their own. Since my brother wasn’t your “typical” teenager, I have no frame of reference here.
My son, so far, has managed to keep himself out of any outside trouble. I thank the teenage gods for that, because believe me, I KNOW how much trouble can be found if you go looking for it. Teenagers today have so much more on their shoulders. I am thankful beyond measure that he is making good choices. I’m not foolish enough to believe the day will never come where I’ll get some type of phone call. But, for now, I’ll take the good where I can find it.
Home base is a whole different ball game. Teenage boys are filled with anger, at least mine seems to be. I imagine it has a lot to do with all that extra testosterone flowing through their bodies. Whatever the case, the shitstorm that’s been raining down in our house lately is cause for a serious look at how to steer his path in a new direction. Let’s just say there are days…and plenty of them lately…that my dear son should be VERY thankful that I don’t believe in beating my children. I won’t lie…it takes a lot of strong will occasionally to not go all old school on his ass. But I don’t, and I won’t.
So, my friends, what is the answer? How do I dig down deep and find that sweet child I KNOW is still in there somewhere? The one who would never even THINK of saying some of the things that have come out of his mouth lately. The one who needs direction and discipline at the same time. My baby, my growing teenage boy.
I watch the see-saw of emotions go across his face at times like that. I even watch the words I know he wishes he could say. “Go away. I hate you right now. Life sucks.” Is it really that different from the feelings that swirled around my head as a teenager? Not so much. Boys just tend to let it out differently. Maybe they’d also like to say, “I wish I could still be your little boy. Hug me. Tell me you’re here for me. I feel lost and angry.” And I do that. But, maybe I need to do it even more. Maybe inside that “tough guy”, angry teenager is a piece of that little boy who still needs his Mom as much as I need him.