7 Subjective Truths for Raising PreTeen Children I Hill Country Homestead Texas
Raising a tween or preteen with a bad attitude is enough to make any parent go haywire. What is a tween? A 9-year-old, a ten-year-old? This is also subjective, the answer will be different for each child and home situation. You will notice when the tween hormones start showing up and the arguments of a preteen who thinks they know it all becomes common conversation. There is hope!
Key things to focus on
1. The heart of the home lies within the Parents. The atmosphere of the home should be like healthy soil, ready to nourish and help grow, a safe nurturing place for your developing child. The parents control this atmosphere and it’s important to me to keep the home atmosphere a completely different climate than the outside world. Pray for the household and for the thoughts, actions, and words of everyone who lives there.
2. Current events of the household should dictate the intensity and pace of life. If things are great and going well then barrel on; attend the events, make every game and go to every birthday party. If facing uncertainty or strife within the family or with your preteen, slow down to spend more time together and assess the situations deeper. Practice conflict resolution if possible and seek counseling if needed. The ease or difficulty of any one situation and giving grace or pushing forward based on the child’s need spiritually, physically, academically and emotionally can make all the difference in a preteen’s life. Yes, preteens and teens have a LOT of complicated needs. Barreling forward in academic pressures isn’t always the most important thing to focus on but matters of the heart sometimes will require more attention.
3. It’s hard. It’s not that your doing anything wrong, it’s just really really hard.
4. Don’t be naive. Their brains are changing, they are capable of so much. Sometimes those changes present themselves negatively. That’s your baby but be on guard.
5. Preteens still need to be read aloud to. This may not seem like a simple task, especially if they don’t want you to read aloud to them. I will use a family devotional time to get everyone gathered around and they know they can’t argue with me if it has to do with the Bible. Then when the devotional is over, I accidentally continue on to another book, quickly. Continue as long as they will sit still. No, we aren’t talking about toddlers here, I know the approach sounds similar.
6. They should be doing their own laundry successfully and helping in other areas of the house like doing a whole load of dishes, sweeping, vacuuming and all that jazz. It shocks me when my older children come home speaking of friends whose mom is still doing their laundry for them and clearing their place at the dinner table for them. Do your preteen a huge favor and train them up to participate in their community and be held responsible for their part so it’s not a shock to them when the real world hits.
7. There is no one way to do this thing. You can do everything right by the book and still get an adverse reaction, something you weren’t expecting. Thankfully we live in an age of information where we can read, research and connect more than ever before. It’s good to hear stories of others who are going through the same situations. The Parent’s journey through the preteen years can be unnerving and hard to navigate but your heartstrings as a parent are still working and relevant even as they are getting older. Talk to God ABOUT your preteen, with your preteen and around your preteen. Don’t follow all the guides out there, try to follow the heart.