Adolescence is very hard.
For one thing, your body is going through ten million changes and hormones at any given time.
For another, you don't really grasp what's happening to you. Everything feels like life or death. Everybody feels like they're operating in a way that they will nonstop for the rest of their lives.
Though that's not true, that feels impossible to understand.
Here were some of those answers.
Boundaries: The MusicalGiphy
Learn to say No, if a request makes you uncomfortable you can say No, even it's to family or friends! It's healthy to set boundaries and learn to respect others people's too :)
Car Keep Talking Talking Car Talk
As a parent of older teens, I'd like to offer a small bit of advice to parents of younger kids:
Always volunteer to drive them places. Your kid might not voluntarily talk to you at home, but they will in the car. I have no idea why this is, I figured this out quite by accident. I'm certain smarter people than me know why.
Their friends too...their friends will talk to you in the car, and if you have a bunch of kids in the car they'll almost forget you're there & you'll hear all kinds of things.
So yeah, be the parent that they can always count on for a ride.
A Love Thyself Moment
It's okay to take some time to take care of your mental health, nobody will hate you for it.
At my school they're trying to implement mental health teaching around the school. But imo they're doing it wrong. They're teaching to eat junk food and meditate. But it's important to note that caring for mental health can be as simple as reading a good book for a few hours when you're getting stressed
Forgiveness: Can You Imagine?
Your parents are just flawed people too. They are [mostly] trying their best, but will still make mistakes.
I absolutely agree. It is also important as parents to own your mistakes in front of your children. Not only does it teach them that we are not perfect, it shows we are willing to accept when we are wrong, apologise and we will learn to do better, accept their point of view and advice if it is about them personally too. It is important to let them accept your apology in their own time too, it shows that there are consequences, even as adults and it also teaches that sometimes a sorry isn't always enough.
Nobody is perfect, we will all mistakes along the way, it is how we deal with it that matters.
Love As A Verb
That we love and care about them, I think we often get caught up in day-to-day life and forget to tell them this.
I know my mother loves me, but she never told us, nor did she ever hug us or show physical affection.
So sometimes it's still hard to believe that I can be loved.
She did her best raising us as a single mother, and her being left by our father because he didn't love her any more seemed to translate to us a bit. I didn't feel affection growing up, I just remember bitterness and sadness. I know it wasn't easy for her.
If I have kids, I am going to do things differently.
There's nothing wrong with not liking to talk to people as long as you're friendly. Don't force yourself to be talkative just because others want you to be. You'll still need to learn social skills like gauging trustworthiness, effective communication, and helpfulness. However, you don't need to force yourself to be talkative to be socially adept; you juat have to be mindful.
The List Of Hindsight
Your emotions won't be this intense forever. But they are real and valid. My parents always invalidated my feelings — too dramatic, it's just your hormones, you'll grow out of it, you don't know how good you have it — while on some base level they possibly were right, it didn't mean my feelings weren't real and intense in that moment. Allow yourself to feel what you feel. But don't wallow or feed the Depression Kitty. It DOES get better.
If social media makes you feel sh*tty, just stop. It makes everyone feel sh*tty — even the people whose lives seem so much better and glamorous than yours. Chances are, they're posting that stuff to not feel shitty too. Remember, everyone is posting their Greatest Hits
. Remember, everybody poops — even the girl posting glam pics from Greece, she probably pooped right before or after the pic. Point is, don't get wrapped up in that. Take a month or two break from social media and see how you feel.
You don't HAVE to go to college. And you also don't have to NOT go if you don't know what to do with your life. You'll figure it out, maybe get inspired by your classes. And, as long as it will not launch you into a huge debt, it IS ok to Major in something you might not end up getting a career in. (To an extent). College is more than career training. It's a much bigger learning experience about... everything! People, the world, yourself. Don't dig a debt, work very hard, have lots of fun, and try to keep your eyes on a career path, but also absorb everything like a sponge.
I hated when people told me, "you won't even miss high school when you're older." I did, for a little bit. And now, I really don't. As important as it is as a state of your pre-adulthood, in the big scheme of things, it's just a tiny chapter. So don't get hung up on the mistakes you made or the drama you had. Appreciate the experience for what it gave you, and move on.
Lastly, and where I go all old lady, Please put your phone away in the car. Even at stoplights. Just wait until you arrive. You may be super used to it, but it only takes one second of inattention to become potentially fatal. Someone just died in my neighborhood for this very reason. Sending a snap. It can wait.
(edit to add #6) Teach yourself personal finance basics. Your school and maybe parents probably neglected this, if times haven't changed all that much. But... The internet is wonderful! You can teach yourself. Take an edX or Kahn or iTunesU course. Learn the basics and start saving. Really truly understand student loans before taking them. And save. Saving sounds like something you have plenty of time for later... when you make more money... but tomorrow never comes. Learn and save now.
It Goes Up From Here
A lot of people try to glamorize high school and make you think your high school years are the best years of your life. For a lot of people, this just isn't true. It's okay not to like high school or to feel like you don't belong. You are not alone. It gets better.
High schoolers deal with a lot of heavy sh!t. A lot of mental illness comes to light at this age, including depression and anxiety but also heavier stuff. Many who struggle with these issues won't get help until years later. High school kids also deal with a lot of issues, like identity issues, bullying, pressure to conform, disputes with parents, the pressure associated with juggling work, school and life that often get better once high school is done. Hang in there, it does get better.
Who You've Become
That we miss you & we actually want to spend time with you, not because of how you were (our little boy/girl) but because we are in awe of who you are and want to get to know you better, so you know we love you unconditionally but also that it's ok and fun to hang out sometimes; soon you'll be leaving home, time passes quickly, and we want to create as many good memories as we can for you so you can use them for when the world is not so kind and I'm not around to give you a hug... you're amazing, you've always been and I know your life will be filled with ups and downs but I hope the love we share reminds you that you'll always have a soft spot to land
The Measure Of A PersonGiphy
Be calm when arguing your point of view. Accept criticism, shrug off the type of personal attacks and ad hominems that don't contribute to the debate.
And don't measure how right you are by number of upvotes or downvotes.