'A letter to... my teenage daughter' - the Guardian(10 Posts)
"My dearest daughter, you say you hate me. You say this with all the venom your 13-year-old soul can muster. Your eyes contract, you search deep within yourself to find all the hatred you have ever known and you give this to me. You hurl it, throw it, slam it, scream it, sob it, shove it in my face. Close and menacing."
It's really upset me - I can relate to it all too easily.
hi OP my DD is 12 and I can feel this coming down the line although not there yet. She already has very shouty moments and is inclined to blame me for things that I really don't have control over.
I wish you luck in weathering the storm and hope it doesn't last too long.
I think it is a horrible letter. It focuses so much on the negative.
My ds is 12 and has moments like this. But in between there are still lovely moments, and as parents we have to keep the love coming, we have to be the adult and understand they are children. We have to make sure they understand that the love is unconditional and that we will always be there for them.
I get the sentiment she is expressing and sympathise with it, but I hope the letter wasn't ever sent.
I thought the description of the teen's behaviour was shocking.
I really dislike that column in the Guardian. It's self-indulgent and smacks of Daily Mail sadface but minus pictures. I can't see how it does anything but provide self-validation for the writer.
I was a horrible teenager and I remember really hating my mum. I loved her, absolutely, and she has always been a brilliant mother, but I was so full of anger and hormones and at times I sort of despised her. I feel terrible about it now! Anyway we are very good friends now and have a great relationship, so it doesn't necessarily bode badly for the future.
Floods of tears here when I read this. I can relate to a lot of it as well.
I knew exactly what this thread was going to be about before I clicked on it. I was on a train with my teenage daughter on Saturday and was reading this in the Guardian. I elbowed her to look at it and she read it over my shoulder with a coy grin on her face. We both identified with it in a small way but yes it did focus on the negatives. It isn't all slamming doors and eye rolling for most I suspect and if it is as bad as it seems for the writer, her daughter would seem to be having mental health issues over and beyond the usual hormonal challenges.
I have been mulling this over overnight. The thing I find so disturbing about this letter, is that if that was me, (and I can totally get and sympathise with how the author feels and how upset she is over her daughter's behaviour) anyway, if it was me, I would be writing a letter which went along the lines of:
I know that at the moment you are finding life tough. I know that you are expressing that by directing all your unhappiness at me.
To be honest I find that hard. I am struggling with your anger at me all the time, and I find it hard that whatever I say you throw it back at me.
But I want you to know that no matter what you say, no matter how angry you get, I will still love you.
I love your intelligence, your passion, your ability to be gentle with younger kids. I love your smile and the way you flick your hair when you are happy.
But even on those horrible days when there aren't any smiles or gentleness to be seen, I still love you, because you are my daughter, and I will always love you, and I understand how hard it can be to be a teenager at times.
Before you roll your eyes at all this sentiment, I just want you to know this so that if you ever find yourself in a place where you need help, you will know that you can come to us, and we will be there.
In the meantime, could we call a bit of a truce? Could we start from the basis that I actually do want to help? How about we have lunch together and you can tell me what 3 things would make life better for you, and we can have a think about how we could make them possible.
steppemum that is a lovely letter you have written and it has brought a tear to my eye.
You've summed up my feelings towards my 15 year old DS very nicely
Join the discussion
Already registered? Log in with:
Please login first.