We parents know you hate us. It’s what teenagers are supposed to do, hate their parents. On the most part, we’re OK with that because we used to hate our parents too. Funny how, when you get older, you actually love and respect them again.
In my day, when a parent said “NO”, it meant the same as it does today. NO. I’m thinking that this generation must have a misunderstanding as to what the definition of NO actually is. Let me explain what NO actually means.
-NO MEANS you may NOT leave the house until your room is clean.
-NO MEANS you may NOT go on your various electronics until your homework is done.
-NO MEANS you may NOT stay up until all hours of the night, on a school night. Go to bed means go to fucking bed. Lights out, including the illumination of your cellphones and computers.
-NO MEANS you may NOT have friends over at 9pm on a school night or leave the house.
-NO MEANS you may NOT have privileges if you’re an asshole, your only privilege is looking at your disgustingly messy four walls.
-NO MEANS I am the parent. YOU are the CHILD. I WIN. EVERY SINGLE TIME. Even if you think it’s the most UNFAIR REASON YOU’VE EVER HEARD.
-NO MEANS NO because you haven’t earned whatever it is you’re asking for. Grades, attitude or failing to unclog your ears. Even for the most simplistic of all tasks.
NO doesn’t mean we don’t love you. Not at all. So stop acting like you’ve been abused by drunken parents. Believe it or not, we aren’t trying to hurt you when we tell you no. We are trying to make you understand the importance of certain things.
YES is something you have to earn. Your entire life. YES doesn’t fall into your lap, it’s a struggle. It takes work. From something as simple as an allowance to something as big as getting and keeping a real job.
We aren’t torturing you the way you seem to think we are. We are trying to do this crazy thing called…RAISE OUR CHILDREN. We are trying to help you along so that you may have successful and fulfilling lives. We are trying to steer you away from major mistakes we see you beginning to make and guide you toward the other path we see you eyeballing.
When you say your petulant NO’s, crossing your arms and stomping your feet in response…it’s NORMAL. We did that too. And just like us, our parents wanted to beat the stubborn resolve out of us too.
Nothing you are doing in response to anything we are doing is close to being unique.
You aren’t the only children who have ever hated their parents.
You aren’t the only children who have ever hated their homes.
You aren’t the only children who have ever wanted to run away from home.
You aren’t the only children who have ever acted and responded the way you do.
Therefore, understand that we understand. We TOTALLY GET IT. We were once you. And yes, we do remember, all too well, what it’s like to be your age.
SO…get over yourselves. Understand that your stubborness, your defiance, your attitude…will get you nowhere. Quick.
You are going to be told NO a LOT in your lifetime. For many different reasons. Learn to deal with it. It’ll make you appreciate when someone smiles and gives you a sincere yes WAY MORE.
Until you understand the benefits of NO and the benefits of following rules, you’ll never appreciate the freedom of a YES.
To my teenagers and teenagers everywhere…
Stop acting so entitled, we don’t owe you anything. In fact, it’s quite opposite. You owe us. And the only thing that we expect, as our payment owed, is for you to do what it is we ask of you. In fact, you owe yourselves that, too.
We always love you. No matter what. There are times where we hate what you are doing or how you are acting but always know…
You are loved deeply.
No matter what.
The Mother of a few teenagers
Amen. I don’t have teenagers yet, but I know it is coming. I have one that I’m sure is going to cause a lot of drama. I expect to hear “you’re ruining my life” quite a lot.
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Melissa, I can tell you in all honesty that my husband was never told no in his lifetime – and the transition from teenager to adult was unbelievably difficult for him. He was a good kid. He was smart. He was a hard worker. Yet because he had never really been told no, he had a sense of entitlement that even he didn’t realize was there. So keep doing what you are doing because you are doing it all right and he will be better for it in the long run, no matter how difficult it is for both of you now.
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Oh, girl. You are pure awesomeness. Thank you for making me feel that I, like teens everywhere am indeed not alone in being a frustrated mom of a tween! xoxoxoxo
As the parent of adult children I have learned many things. Most of all the best reason for not killing that teenager is that one day they will give you amazing grand children, and you can then sit back and laugh as they go through it all themselves.
I so understand this! And like I told my friend with small kids – if your children tell you they hate you, you must be doing something right!
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Elizabeth Wheelock says
Ahh yes, the teenage years. Going through it right now! I’m with you all the way on this one!! Peace….
Kat @ iHeart7.com says
I love this 🙂 haha You and I share a common mentality regarding children. There is a simple understanding in our house: I am the parent. You are the child. You obey and no one gets hurt… There are no discussions once you get an answer and negotiations closed before you were even born so suck it up. I love you unconditionally and I know you will hate me for a while and I’m okay with that so long as you respect me. When you have kids of your own, you’ll come back around and appreciate the kind of mother I am because you will strive to be the same 🙂
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Awesome! I just hope you print this blog and post it on their bathroom mirror, the fridge, in their locker at school, in their math textbook… I am totally sharing your letter with a friend. She’s having a hard time with her teen here lately.
Just sat my 3 teens down and read this,THANK YOU!
My college freshman is finally starting to understand the “why” of all the rules we have. It’s an interesting, if somewhat painful, experience to watch as his eyes are opened.
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Well said!! Do you hear that…. well it’s the sound of me clapping for you!
You are right.
That’s the only way it goes right.
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