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Old 03-22-2011, 03:08 PM
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
85,013 posts, read 98,876,691 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AnotherTouchOfWhimsy View Post
My own kids are 10 and almost 8, but we host exchange students, all of whom have been between the ages of 16 and 18. Our current student is a 17-year-old girl, and she's here for the academic year. We act as their parents while they're here, handling both the good and bad parts of raising teens. We've dealt with typical teen issues (drinking, sex, breaking curfew, etc), but for the most part, having them here is an utter joy and an amazing experience. I look at the problems that we've gone through as practice for my own kids' adolescence!
Look at fallingwater's post. It will not be the same. Trust me. We had an exchange student when my kids were 4 and 7; it was not preparation for my own kids' teen years. Believe me when I say there's a lot more emotion involved in your own kids than these exchange students. Nice little "fighting fair" techniques, etc, work better with other people's kids.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CharlotteGal View Post
One thing that has been invaluable to me is the acronym QTIP: Quit Taking It Personally. If my son said something in a cranky voice, I would take a nice, deep breath, then listen to what he was saying. We would see if there was any kind of way to work out a mutual solution, not just keep trying to push my own agenda on him. It took a LOT of deep breaths! LOL I could address the "attitude" later - but, really, as soon as I started focusing on what he was saying, rather than how he was saying it, the disrespectful attitude mostly went away. I say mostly, because he's still human, he was still hormonal, etc. I am certainly no angel every minute of every day, in regards to how cranky I can get, etc. People expect more of teens than they do adults in their lives!

I didn't have to "teach" him to not speak disrespectfully - speaking respectfully to him, and really, really hearing him, and taking his wants seriously, did that.

And I see wonderful things happening as I do that with the 12-year-old, also. He has been quick to get frustrated since he was tiny, and can be very oppositional. As he's gotten older, and he KNOWS that I will truly listen to him (as I would a friend!), and support him, that has mellowed soooo much. He is happy, kind, and helpful - because I'm happy, kind and helpful to him!
That is all easier said than done, especially when the kid knows just how to push your buttons. It's still good advice, though.
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Old 03-23-2011, 11:10 AM
 
Location: Deep in the heart of Texas
1,917 posts, read 6,308,110 times
Reputation: 1958
I have a 19 y.o. DD now and 13 y.o. DS. I have an 8 y.o. DS who is the sweeeeetest guy in the world (notice his age doesn't end with "-teen" )
They have been good kids except for a few minor snags here and there. The 19 y.o. is going thru a breakup now and it has not.been.fun.
Sometimes I can't stand hearing her whine and cry all the time. But she is mending a broken heart and I have to be supportive. Sigh. I wish she was 8 again
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Old 03-23-2011, 04:01 PM
 
Location: UK
2,579 posts, read 2,134,287 times
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I have a 14 years old daughter and an 11 years old son and then a 4 years old son.
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Old 03-24-2011, 07:18 AM
 
Location: The Hall of Justice
25,907 posts, read 35,007,171 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ajzjmsmom View Post
How many of the regular posters on here have teenage kids or have had teenage kids?
I have two, 13 and 14. The 14-year-old will be 15 in April.
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Old 03-24-2011, 07:32 AM
 
Location: Florida
4,092 posts, read 3,069,394 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
Look at fallingwater's post. It will not be the same. Trust me. We had an exchange student when my kids were 4 and 7; it was not preparation for my own kids' teen years. Believe me when I say there's a lot more emotion involved in your own kids than these exchange students. Nice little "fighting fair" techniques, etc, work better with other people's kids.


Oh, no doubt! LOL Dealing with problems has made me aware of them, though, and our current student has given me a lot of insight on the secret life of 21st century teens. I know that my own teens will probably not be as honest and forthcoming as our student is... just as she's not really my kid, I'm not really her mom. There is a lot of emotion involved--I'm very invested in this experience--but I do know that it will be different with my own children.

Where was your student from? Did you have a wonderful experience? We're on our second academic-year student, and we've hosted short-term students as well, all from Western Europe. We're taking a year off (I think), but hope to do it again in 2012/2013.
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Old 03-24-2011, 07:58 AM
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
85,013 posts, read 98,876,691 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AnotherTouchOfWhimsy View Post
Oh, no doubt! LOL Dealing with problems has made me aware of them, though, and our current student has given me a lot of insight on the secret life of 21st century teens. I know that my own teens will probably not be as honest and forthcoming as our student is... just as she's not really my kid, I'm not really her mom. There is a lot of emotion involved--I'm very invested in this experience--but I do know that it will be different with my own children.

Where was your student from? Did you have a wonderful experience? We're on our second academic-year student, and we've hosted short-term students as well, all from Western Europe. We're taking a year off (I think), but hope to do it again in 2012/2013.
Our student was from Japan. I'm concerned about her now, but we don't have any way to contact her. It was almost 20 years ago. The experience was great! How about yours?
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Old 03-24-2011, 09:14 AM
 
Location: Florida
4,092 posts, read 3,069,394 times
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We are having a great time. Our students have become totally enmeshed with our family. The first one was four years ago, and she comes to visit each year; we also went to visit her in Germany, and we email regularly. My brother travels to Germany several times per year, and he gets together with her occasionally as well. I'm so, SO close to our current student, and I'm dreading June, when she goes home. I know that she will also be part of our family forever. This experience is just amazing!

I hope that your student is okay.
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Old 03-24-2011, 11:35 AM
 
Location: Centereach
466 posts, read 875,351 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by treeg26 View Post
I just logged on after an arguement with my 14 year old daughter - about her mouth. Sometimes it seems like she couldn't talk in a nice tone of voice to save her life!! Almost always directed at me. I'll tell her to talk in a respectful tone, she'll say "I DID!" (real snotty), and so on and so on.

And yes, she is a lot like me. I think that's why we butt heads so much. We argue a lot and need to find a way to end this awful cycle we are stuck in right now.

Thanks for letting me vent..... I wish I was enjoying the teenage years like some are. There are moments that I do, but a lot that I'm not. Right now I'm thinking "It's only just begun..."
I,too, have a 14yo daughter and it's tough. She's a good kid, but she's subborn and gives attitude. She can be so mean, rude and distant and I also think that this is only the beginning. I hope in 5 years that things are different.

When she acts up, I don't yell. I calmly take her cell phone away for 24 hours (we need a full day of good behavior). If she sasses me, I add another day. If her grades for the week are poor, she isn't allowed to go out on the weekend. So far our "problems" are minor, but I really get upset when I see moms with their teen-aged daughters around and the daughters are actually talking and smiling at their moms!! I just wonder where did I go wrong (or is it genetics).
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Old 03-24-2011, 11:46 AM
 
Location: Centereach
466 posts, read 875,351 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AnonChick View Post
What was she doing, that prompted you to send her to her room? Why was she sent the first time? What rule of the household did she violate that would result in a "go to your room" punishment?

Are the rules of the household spelled out? Some teens need more specific and concrete guidelines than others. Some teens do just fine without needing someone saying "you need to do -this- every day after school, and THEN you can do -that- for an hour." Some teens need to actually be told. It sounds like yours might need a sit-down to help create house rules and boundaries, at a time when there isn't any stress.

In other words, when you are -not- in the process of arguing, call a family meeting. Have a sit-down with the family gathered together. Explain that you want to see everyone feeling like they're contributing to the peace and happiness of the family unit, and "we're all here tonight" to create a chart that should result in just that. And then get input from everyone about what they feel -they- could contribute, that would add to the peace and happiness of the household. Don't tell them what they should do. Give them the opportunity to tell you what they WILL do. And write it down. If they're unsure what to say, suggest to them that it can be added chores, or different behaviors, or a shift in TV-watching schedules, or the volume of their voices/music, whatever they feel would be a positive change in the atmosphere. But let THEM be the ones to decide what those things will be, for themselves. Give them the chance to participate in the positive, rather than sinking down into the negative.

And then offer rewards. For a week's worth of peace and happiness in the house, they get points. Give a goal - maybe a destination option for vacation. Give different destinations different points, different values based on effort to achieve. So like, 4 days in the Caymans might be worth 25 points. A week in the mountains near home might be worth 20 points. Hawaii, 50 points. Make all of them things your family can afford, obviously.

And at the end of the period, look at the number of points added up - and let the family choose the vacation from the list of "earned" destinations.

Oh, Lord, you sound JUST like my husband, lol. We did all of that - the family meeting, the chart and the points. My daughter (14yo) laughed at us and rolled her eyes too many times to count. The entire thing was exhausting, keeping up with the points. Eventually the entire thing fell to the way-side and that was that. I think it was just too complicated.

I agree that the rules need to be spelled out and clear. But things need to be simple. One thing that has been working for us is a chart with grades and rewards. If the kids have a certain average on their report cards then they get XX amount of dollars. They don't get an allowance, so this is their chance to get money. We've been doing this for about 3 years and the kids really do work to get that money. This is simple and easy to do.
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Old 03-24-2011, 02:53 PM
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
85,013 posts, read 98,876,691 times
Reputation: 31456
Quote:
Originally Posted by corky101 View Post
I,too, have a 14yo daughter and it's tough. She's a good kid, but she's subborn and gives attitude. She can be so mean, rude and distant and I also think that this is only the beginning. I hope in 5 years that things are different.

When she acts up, I don't yell. I calmly take her cell phone away for 24 hours (we need a full day of good behavior). If she sasses me, I add another day. If her grades for the week are poor, she isn't allowed to go out on the weekend. So far our "problems" are minor, but I really get upset when I see moms with their teen-aged daughters around and the daughters are actually talking and smiling at their moms!! I just wonder where did I go wrong (or is it genetics).
You have to find a punishment that works. With my second daughter, that didn't happen until she could drive. Then I'd take the car away. 5 years is wishful thinking. That one, at 23, is still sullen and angry much of the time. I hope she gets over it before I die.
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