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To feel very hypocritical but very scared for my girls

48 replies

Shelly32 · 06/06/2013 21:39

As a teen I did some things, as we've all done I imagine, and regretted them. I was brought up very well by a family who loved me dearly and instilled what I guess could be called old fasioned values. Maybe I was rebelling, maybe I was experimenting, maybe I was just doing what most teenagers do. Either way, I 'snogged' a lot of boys, probably did more than I should have done with some boys and now think...Oh My goodness.. I do not want my girls to behave like that. They are 3 yrs old and anything like that is a long way off but I can't see anything that my parents did wrong in bringing me up for me to do what I did. I had a prefect childhood and my parents were fair yet strict. The only thing I can blame is possibly my lack of self esteem yet my mother always told me how beautiful and clever I was. Everyone is different and Iknow I can't control my girls. I'm more than happy now and in a way feel everything has lead me to this but want my girls to have more respect for themselves than I used to have but don't know how to go about it as my parents didn't put a foot wrong apart fom maybe being too trusting at times.

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Wholetthedogin · 06/06/2013 21:45

Shelly, we have all done things that we are not proud of. I know that I have LOADS of skeletons in the closet. TBH snogging or a bit more is really nothing to worry about. I would be more worried if my DD didn't do a little bit of experimentation when growing up.

You really need to try and make peace with your past. You can't change it.

Like you, I would be horrified if DD was to do half of the stuff I've done. I guess you just have to do your best when bringing them up, hope that you have installed in them good values and trust them to do the right thing!


cory · 06/06/2013 21:46

You came through your experiences, have learnt from them and are now more than happy. Do you want your dc to have a life where they never make mistakes? And never learn?

Or is it just that you look at your sweet little 3yos now and can't imagine them ever being great big teenagers with hormones and their own lives to lead?

Besides, how do you know that something that was a mistake for you will necessarily be a mistake for them? Not everybody who has had a lot of lovers regrets it. A survey on Mumsnet would probably reveal roughly a 50-50 split.


TooManyDicksOnTheDancefloor · 06/06/2013 21:46

I could have written your OP, I feel exactly the same way and have two young daughters. Although I also got up to stuff I shouldn't have done, at a young age, I'm ok now! I have a professional job and I'm very sensible. I think we have to accept that most kids will do things that they shouldn't, we just have to guide them in making wise decisions.


cory · 06/06/2013 21:48

I led a pretty exemplary life until I left home at 18: had never really kissed a boy, hardly ever tasted alcohol (one glass at my prom spread out over the whole evening) and never tried smoking. I don't necessarily see this as the only way of achieving a good life.


temporary · 06/06/2013 21:48

I don't think there is anything we can do. You are not alone in doing things that you wouldn't want your children to do, but you can only do your best as your parents did, the rest is up to them to live their lives.


DoTheBestThingsInLifeHaveFleas · 06/06/2013 21:50

I agree with the above post. I too have done lots of things I now make a cats bum face at, if anyone else does them. Snogging too many boys was the least of it to be fair. I feel sick at the thought of DD doing any of it (and even worse if she does half of what her Dad used to do). I was also brought up in a firm but fair house, with old fashioned values. I think you just have to believe that if you put the ground work in, they may stray away, but will come back to sense in the end (like me and DP have). I too find it hard to make peace with who I was in my twenties and am only now realising that I spent a lot of time pretending to be this rebel that I really wasn't, just to fit in or be 'cool'. The kind of school and who they mix with will have a big influence too. Anyway we are aware more than our parents were, and we have more choice that they did, so fingers crossed it will be okay xxx


Shelly32 · 06/06/2013 21:52

Oh I could cry with relief. You all have been more than kind and while I do feel bad for my parents and in a way for myself about some things I've done. It's so nice to know I'm not alone. I'd love to look back with teh self respect , strength and knowledge I have now and be able to make the decisions I made. I hope to instill all that in my girls without trying to smother their curiosity and their right to grow and trust that they will make the right decisions. Thank you ladies XXXXXXX

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RhondaJean · 06/06/2013 21:55

My oldest thinks I am a fine upstanding pillar of society.


I studied music at college. That's all I'm saying.


lookingbusy · 06/06/2013 21:55

I feel like that too. My parents were lovely and supportive. My mum told me there was nothing I couldn't do and would scoff loudly if I suggested I would be able to manage something. Yet I felt compelled to snog and get groped by total losers at a very young age. I have absolutely no idea why I felt such an overwhelming need to fit in with those around me. I also remember getting in a car after a party with a very pissed 17 year old boy. Only his girlfriend arriving got me out before he started the engine. Shocking. My teen is so much more sensible than I ever was. Probably the 3 year old too.


lookingbusy · 06/06/2013 21:57

would be able to manage something = wouldn't be able to manage obvs Blush


badguider · 06/06/2013 21:59

I strongly believe everybody has to make some mistakes for themselves.

Did you feel damaged by your 'snogging' experiences? If so, you probably did go too far, but if you enjoyed it at the time and only cringe looking back (that's how i feel) then they were probably important 'mistakes' to make on the road to discovering what a good relationship is like.


Shelly32 · 06/06/2013 22:05

lookingbusy^ lol. I feel my girls are at times more sensible than me! badguider* No real damage, esp not from snogging..just cheese and onion crisps sticks in my mind during one regretful moment at the tender age of 14. Bleughh!

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HollyBerryBush · 06/06/2013 22:07

I see where you are coming from Op, I could have written your post. But back in our day >dinosaur mode< teenage girls were perhaps a little more compliant through fear of social rejection?

At 15, slap my arse and I'd have coquettishly giggled - do it now and you'd likely be getting a full verbal volley.

As much as I see some on MN talking about 15yo girls as young ladies with their own sexual rights, rather than the girls they legally are, peer pressure and manipulation is still a force. Peer ostracisation is worse than ever with social media

Hindsight and age is a wonderful thing - we can see how we were manipulated, we can also see how we have matured but above all we have the tools to openly discuss with our children how to avoid some of the peer pressure we may have encountered.

I have boys. I like to think I have brought them up with good, strong morals. I hope I'm not ever proved wrong. They talk about girls in their social circles who have multiple partners and ONS (which is very sad at 15/16/17) but I think I parent well in that after interrogation as to home life circumstances that a lot of these girls are looking to feel loved - and if these girls are their friends they won't take advantage of them. ""touch wood" I've not yet been proved wrong.

I over step my mark a lot of the time with the girls (always got a house full of random teenagers), they talk to me, I don't solicit their confidences, but I tell them that they will only be loved if they love and value themselves.


MammaTJ · 06/06/2013 22:07

I was the kind of teen to turn her mums hair grey, and that was just what she knew about, and she did not know the half of it!! I have turned in to the model adult. I now have a teen of my own. She talks too openly to me, knowing I know a bit about life, though not the full extent of it.

My mum laughs at me when I ring her to moan about my teen!!

I have a 7 and a 6 year old, they will be worse. BUT a majot help will be remembering what I was like then, what my though processes were.

I do think all parents feel like this, they want the best for their own children, they do not accept that from their parents.


marriedinwhiteagain · 06/06/2013 22:12

DS has: drunk himself sick, smoked till he coughs and stinks, been mugged, gone under the mobile radar for 20 hours, come home covered in lovebites. And has calmed down a lot in the last six months - sort of since he got a luffly girlfriend who stays at the w/e he was yelled at to dispose of the condoms under his bed on Sunday morning. It's been a bit of a journey but at 18 we think he's safe to let loose at uni.

DD is 15 and quiet, sweet and adorable. Inwardly groans.


Shelly32 · 06/06/2013 22:27

HollyBerryBush Hindsight is a beautiful thing but often a useless thing, in my experience as a teacher. I hope my girls one day end up in a house like yours with a lady who is dishing out the wise advice that they may have ignored from their own mother! XX Thanks

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HollyBerryBush · 06/06/2013 22:29

I have my moments!


ImperialBlether · 06/06/2013 22:41

I think you should only worry if you did things that you didn't want to do, that you were bullied or enticed or persuaded into. If you just fancied snogging a boy from school and did it and it was fine, what's the problem? If you had low self esteem and stole things for your friends, or slept with boys who treated you badly, then I'd say you should try to get help even now.


jammiedonut · 06/06/2013 22:42

It's understandable to worry. All I can suggest is that you offer a supportive, loving environment for your daughters as they grow up. Be honest about your past and allow them to make their own decisions/ mistakes knowing you're there to support them, but they'll also have to deal with the consequences. If it helps my sisters and I were born to a 16year old mother who was raised by 'model' parents. We shouldn't have stood a chance with the start we had but mum was, and continues to be a fantastic role model. I've no doubt that if I'd have made the same choices as her I would have had her support, but I grew up knowing there was so much more available to me, and had the confidence to say no and make the right decisions when I needed to.


thebody · 06/06/2013 22:49

A sense of humour helps as well. And wine!!

Love my teens after some wine.


Shelly32 · 06/06/2013 22:50

Imperial I don't think I fall into the negative descriptions asides from possibly having a relationship with one older (6yrs) man who was rather controlling. I was smart enough to get out of that and don't need help of any kind, but thank you.
Jammie That's the type of mother I want to be. My mum was a great role model but probably not aware of te type of things teens did when I was a teen. She married my Dad at 19 and was a virgin so wouldn't have really been aware of the type of peer pressure and social contexts that I experienced.

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Shelly32 · 06/06/2013 22:52

thebody Glad to know that wine helps with all stages of our children's development! Wink

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thebody · 06/06/2013 22:55

Shelley yes strangely I have always found it so.


WilsonFrickett · 06/06/2013 22:55

Why don't you want your girls to behave 'like that'? I'm genuinely puzzled as to why you think your teenage behaviour was so bad? (unless of course anything happened against your will or due to peer pressure.)

So you experimented a bit? So what?


Shelly32 · 06/06/2013 23:07

WilsonFrickett As from my post, I question whether I'm being hypocritical. Nothing bad happened to me. I have no trauma. I do however wish a less peer governed future for my children. I don't blame my peers for what I did, I take full resposibility for the snogs, fumbles and more BUT I wish I'd been more mature, wish I'd listened to my parents more and don't want the foolish mistakes I made to be the foolish mistakes of my girls. I just look at the great childhood I had and the wise parents I had and question why I made the choices I did. I do not want my girls to do what I did. I guess I want them to be wiser and more clued up. That takes time and maturity I know , but I want it for them when they most need it, which is probably in their teens.

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