Getting to know a new person – your tween

We often hear moms saying – where did my baby go, baby, don’t grow up too fast and so on. Very true isn’t it? Kids indeed grow up big and bigger in a flash of a moment! Toddler now, tween / teen next moment.

I still 100% clearly remember their pre-birth and birth stories, those tiny feet and hands, that pinkish delicate skin, those first hair, those massages and bath, that beautiful post-bath fragrance of their forehead, milk times, poop times, vaccinations and everything in-between. How come those moments slipped away from my hands so so fast? Well, that’s the reality.

Baby, toddler, pre-schooler, Lower primary and then comes the stage when your little baby is already a tween or a teen. Rollercoaster ride for any parent it is.

My Daughter is in her tweens and will become a teen soon. Wow, this phase is something that I was so unprepared for. Or rather I thought this is my child whom I have been raising for last 10 years and I know every single thing about her – her likes, dislikes, food habits, study habits, clothes choices – everything!

Are you in the same boat like me, then time to pause, think and rethink. Introducing a completely new person – your tween – it’s the same child but yet so different.

My 5-Point guide to understand your tween or early teen is here – completely based on my own experience:

Embrace the change –

Just a few months back, this kid used to follow all or at least most of the suggestions of the parents. Now suddenly what happened – Why there is this adamant know-all attitude? Why there is this rebellion streak? Why so many mood swings? Completely natural I would say.

This age their hormones are changing, their minds are changing too. They are smarter, more independent and are observing their surroundings with more keenness. Tweens have their own little world now – not that parents are out of their world but yes, friends occupy quite a large space now. Also YouTube stars, Fashion icons!

Tweens can get quite fierce when it comes to parents advice. They might find it boring, annoying etc etc. They also think that they know better – about study, about world.

So what do a parent do? Sudden change for a parent as well actually because we are still in that “my baby” mode. As a parent, all we can do is wholeheartedly accept the change. Not that you are going to love it but who loved those sleepless nights when Our toddlers were teething and crying and getting colicky? Yes, it’s a phase just like those terrible twos and troublesome threes.

Parenting is after all 24×7 learning process as we all know. And one more thing – do remember your own tween / teen age behaviour.

Patience, patience –

Remember those times when this kid used to howl at the TOP of its voice to demand milk or used to throw tantrum when it comes to sharing? What we used to do? We used to joke about it, we used to pursue them and we used to handle the situation tactfully. Time to bring back those skills.

Handle with care I would say. No idea when the tween will feel happy and when will feel sad or angry. There’s so much going on in their little minds and brains and it’s overwhelming even for them.

If we start reacting the same way to their tantrums, things are going to get difficult. Patience, patience – parents should keep telling each other.

For parents too, it’s not that easy to always maintain their cool since they are also putting lots of hard work for the kids working day in and day out. But still, take a deep breath and go steady.

Be prepared to Change yourself –

You cannot be the same “my baby, so cute, love you, pamper you, awww” kind of a parent. You believe or not believe but the kid is a tween now.

Those once upon a time fairy tales will suddenly become boring, the cartoon that tween used to watch will look like “babyish” to them. Usual chats might not interest them. Their lingo will be revamped now and LOL, IDK will take over.

So, yes, as a parent, we have to unlearn certain things and learn new stuff. Be a bit more techie, be a bit more fashion conscious, act a bit younger and essentially start transitioning from the parent role to this new role – more Friend and less philosopher.

Have some really hi-Profile conversations with them, talk about world affairs, indulge in some silly gossip about celebs, take them on shopping dates and so on. Basically, treat them like “big children”.

Involve spouse and younger siblings –

In my case, my hubby is far more matured and thinks from all perspectives. When you are getting to know this new person AKA your tween/early teen, please feel free to take the support of your spouse. After all, both of you have made this kid and both love it. When you discuss among yourselves, it’s easy to analyse the behaviour of the tween.

In fact, you can even take help of younger siblings. These little people are very smart and they will provide lots of insights about their elder Sister or Brother to you. Example: what they like, who’s their Best Friend.

You are still a Parent and the tween is a child –

Let’s make it clear to the tween too. You are their Friend but there will be boundaries to follow and parent has the veto power. They actually know that as well.

After all, your baby has become big but insides of inside, tween is a child – that same kid who was so dependent on you for every little thing. They love their parents and will always seek your advice.

Hugs, kisses might become a bit less frequent but that love for parents is forever. Those phone calls complaining about the School Friend or occasional request to make them sleep or sudden “I love you” or “Are you feeling well?” is proof enough that my baby is always mine – small or big!

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Disclaimer: images are my own or taken from internet search. All the views expressed here are based on my experience.

 

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55 comments on “Getting to know a new person – your tween”

  1. Nisha Malik Reply

    Teenage is a tough phase for children as well as parents. Both need to try to be thoughtful. It was an interesting take on the phase. Your daughter is adorable.

  2. Yogita Vijay Rane Reply

    She’s a cutie ? this post was super useful as you have penned down your feelings so well. I am yet to experience motherhood and this stage ?
    I always love your take on parenting.

  3. prernasinha2000 Reply

    Even I feel both my kids are growing up fast. But these are like the best days watching them grow.. I really enjoyed reading this blog. Would love to share it with my friends and family. Too good.??

  4. Jhilmil Reply

    This was an interesting read, my son is a threesome only right now , so the tween phase is yet awaited, but as my niece has entered this phase I saw so many changes you quoted in her as well . Great read

  5. Elizabeth O Reply

    Children grow up so fast, if only we could slow it down a little and let them be babies for longer. I really laughed at the quote about invading personal space haha

  6. Tennille M. Reply

    I just shared this post with my sister. We often forget that tweens are people with their own ideas and thoughts. Such a great read.

  7. Amanda Reply

    I think this is so important to read! I remember my tweens and I was horrible to my parents. I am not looking forward to having my own kids one day. I hope to remember these tips! Thank you!

  8. Nati Reply

    What a great reading! thank you! I’m one of those mom’s who’d like to stop the time, LOL I know, my little one is “only” two, but it seems like yesterday when she was born! my “big one” will turn 6 next month and I can’t believe how big and mature he is, he’s no longer my little baby and he takes offence if I say so to him (even though in my heart he will always be my baby, lol).

  9. karriefrost Reply

    Thank you for this advice. My boys are 3 and 1, so I will keep these in mind. I often find myself looking forward to the next stage (ie can’t wait until they can walk, talk, be independent, potty train etc). I should be more present, and enjoy these moments, no matter how challenging, because they will grow up, eventually, and I can’t get these moments back.

  10. Emily Leary Reply

    My eldest will be a teenager in a couple of years but I think I can already start to see some changes! I’m excited to see how they’re both going to grow and change, as always ?

  11. Sue Tanya Mchorgh Reply

    Such a good post. I don’t have nay kids yet but i have cousins i grew up with and they grew so fast lol.

  12. nicoleflintkontrol Reply

    I’m not a parent, but I just recently celebrated my 25th birthday and my mom kept telling me how I grew up so fast!

  13. Deb B. Reply

    I’ve been really nervous about my little one becoming a tween but you’re right, she just needs to know without a doubt, that I love her, and I have to be willing to change the way I interact with her as well. It’s tough because I can’t imagine her being different from how she is now.

  14. Joanna Davis Reply

    I don’t have children but I do know that at around the age of 10 they start changing, this is the moment when they start discovering who they are and this is why it’s important for parents to be there for them to support them, even through their attitude and upset periods.

  15. Ithfifi Williams / IthinityBeauty Reply

    This was so insightful! While I don’t have any children myself I am incredibly close with my niece and nephew, my niece is only seven and I am already seeing signs of things being babyish to her. I found these points really interesting and I will be looking out for certain things!

  16. alainamonster Reply

    My oldest just turned 9, so we are well on our way to our tween years. These are some great tips. I think that I’m going to struggle with changing my parenting more than anything. But I’m going into these years knowing that things are going to change as she grows. 😀

  17. Calleigh Reply

    I agree, kids really grow so fast but I cant keep them that way too. My little boy is getting bigger every day and I want him to treat me as his best friend.

  18. Shell Reply

    As a Mama to two boys that are now 21 and 17 I can totally relate to your post!! 🙂 Also that quote about personal space is the absolutely best thing I’ve read all day!!!!!!!!!!! 🙂

  19. Words of a Texas Nerd Reply

    This is the stage I’m getting to. My oldest is 9 and has changed so much that I’m still catching up. You have offered wonderful advice to Moms out there dealing with these changes. Keep up the good work!

  20. Beola Lawal Reply

    This has been in my thought lately, a friend of mine was telling me how her son has changed completely. it scared me a bit and i kept wondering what my son will do at that age. he is only 5 years old, and I am surely trying to build our close relationship more and more, with the hope of having the chance to get through to him in the tween stage. I love all your tips, and it will surely be needed soon.

  21. Cia Black Reply

    This is world I have just entered. My son seemed to have changed over night right before my eyes. I look forward to implementing the tips you provided and will always remember no matter what age my child is I am still and always will be the parent.

  22. David Sim Reply

    We were once in their shoes – tweens and then to teens. A time of self-discovery. Never easy…which is why it’s important to build strong core memories with the kids from young…so that when they are old enough to ‘fly’ they know where is home. Hang in there!

  23. SengkangBabies Reply

    Whenever we hit a road block, I tell myself (maybe console) that I used to be as “rebellious” too haha.
    This phase will phase, hang on.

    cheers, Andy
    (SengkangBabies.com)

  24. Tiffany Yong Reply

    As a child to my mother, I can totally understand what you meant. I’m not sure how I will handle this when I have my own kids, but like what you said, parents will have to slowly adapt and learn.

  25. MomTraNeur Reply

    OOohhhh thank you for sharing your insights! I learned a lot! My toddler is only 23 months old and everyday is a learning process. Still many years to go before the tween stage but I’m glad I read your post. At least I know what to expect somehow from my only boy. 🙂

  26. Frank Reply

    I dont wanna disagree with you but i would say its not flash of moment, its just the time goes fast when you don’t think of it and so as the time flies 6 months later you will find your kid got bigger. Anyway i’m not a father yet xp but great post :))

  27. Stargazer Writes Reply

    Oh wow. I never really thought of this on a parent’s perspective. I am getting to that stage where I am about to start a family. This post made me prepare a bit.

  28. Arti Reply

    Although my daughters are 6 yr old…this article will be saved for future…simply great thing you covered…majorly preparing yourself to change as yojr kids grown up is a critical….well written…keep writing….

  29. Linda Yee Reply

    I also feel my children are growing up super fast. Sometimes I do not know how to handle situations when they rebel. Good to read your blog.

  30. LavandaMichelle Reply

    I have three daughters between 10 – 15, I miss them being little and I also enjoy their maturity. I’m my girls friends, meaning they tell me everything and we have no secrets. However, there are boardiares.

  31. thenafranssen Reply

    What a great post. Parenting is tough, but you have a great way of writing that makes it seem simple!

  32. chewoutloud Reply

    Parenting is pretty much never ending 🙂 It starts at newborn-hood and keeps on going. Mine are now teen and tween, and I know so many mamas who’s kiddos are all grown up and married. Still, there is an element of parenting going on even with them. Time flies way too fast. Once they hit middle school, it’s like you blink and they morph like crazy right before your eyes with each short, short year.

  33. thelordandthelady.com Reply

    My husband always has the ” don’t grow up walk” with the youngest. but I have has about 2 years of kid experience before he came into the lives of my oldest and myself. I think it’s a good thing that they grown because at least they can grow. every milestone is something that isn’t always experienced and I’m grateful that so far my girls are on track and its an amazing site.

  34. rochkirstin Reply

    Most parents in this generation consider their kids as friends. They hang out and talk casually. I think it’s easier for them to adjust.

  35. Elizabeth O Reply

    I love reading your post. Yes, It’s true that having a baby is such a greatest gift for us. They grew up so fast, Baby no more. We need to know more about them and tell them whats right and wrong before they become teens.

  36. Corinne and Kirsty Reply

    I was not difficult as a teenager and I don’t feel like my parents had to go use any of the tips you’re using but my brother might have been a bit more difficult. I guess these tips will be useful to me when i am a parent

  37. Yana Reply

    you know..your entry made me feel like I should really start a family of my own…Though i realised how you described their first moments is actually something that I have been longing for….

  38. nbosken Reply

    I think patience at the end of the day is best. I think about my own mother and how she acted. Even if I was upset at her, I always knew that she loved me and was there for me. All kids want to know that at the end of the day. So I think that’s the most important thing.

  39. Kara Reply

    I don’t have kids but I bet they grow up in a blink of an eye! I loved reading your take on parenting. 🙂

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