Saturday, July 04th, 2009 | Author: mjward

A river in the desert can change overnight from a beach to a torrent. Sometimes adolescence seems to come on as suddenly. Preadolescence is usually a fairly quiet time in the life of a family. Your youngster pauses to consolidate the gains he or she has made earlier in childhood and prepares for the enormous changes of puberty and adolescence. Then suddenly, it seems in just a day, your child is a bundle of raging hormones, up one day emotionally and down the other, ready to challenge your every word one second, and in the next wanting to be your baby. Parents can be shocked and unprepared. But, given time, most teens will come to terms with their bodies and their feelings. They will discover who they are and what they want to do with their lives. The best we, as parents can do, is be there for them. We can try not to become too angry and demanding. We can try to give them space to develop. We can let them live with the consequences of their choices. We need to intervene, if we can, when they are about to destroy themselves. If we can’t, they will need us to stand by to help them pick up the pieces. In time, the torrent will abate. There will be a fresh landscape, with more mature relationships with our children.

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