I’d gotten a bit cocky, I suppose, thinking I had this whole parenting thing nailed.
It all seemed to be going quite smoothly. I had three children that although a challenge at times, were seemingly treading the path they were supposed to follow. Then one of them turned into a teenager.
There are changes that happen when your child becomes a teenager, ones that no one warns you about when you have that seemingly compliant tween in your midst.
That’s why I’m here, to warn you.
Here are some signs that you now have a teenager living under your roof. Feel free to add your own.
1. You run out of hot water.
There was a time when I couldn’t get my daughter into the shower. Now, now I almost have to physically extract her morning and night. Commonly referred to as the ‘Hour of Shower’, my husband has simply taken to turning off the water when the pounding on the door doesn’t work.
When she finally does emerge, she pouts and tells me: “I was washing my HAIR!’
How much can one hair follicle take?
The only silver lining I can take from this is that she is clean. Because her room certainly isn’t.
2. You require a tetanus shot to enter their bedroom.
No, seriously. That place is a freaking minefield and, if you put one foot wrong, you’d better have some heavy-duty penicillin on hand. Most teenagers are quite simply, filthy animals. For some unknown reason, it is physically impossible for them to return dishes to the sink or remove last Wednesday’s underpants from the bedroom floor.
I suggest you invest in a hazmat suit and, at least once a week, go through their room as you would if you were a forensic detective. Sometimes the source of the putrid smell cannot be found or identified.
Sometimes it will be tempting to set the whole thing on fire.
3. Jekyll and Hyde reside in your home.
Only a 14 year old can make you feel like you’ve committed a crime because you asked them how their day was. Get prepared for a whole lot of eye rolling, “FINE!”, and “GOD, stop asking so many questions!”
These irrational responses will blindside you as you are genuinely thinking you were being completely reasonable with your line of conversation.