When my daughter was a preschooler, I remember joking about her future: “If she’s got a 13-year-old’s attitude now, how am I going to handle her when she’s actually a teenager?” Her emotions seemed bigger than she was, far too big for her tiny body. Surely she would be able to handle them better when she was older!
If only it were that easy, right? Parents of teens know that as our children grow, so do their feelings. Add to that the pitfalls of puberty, friendship drama, and kids who are desperately trying to be adults, and we have a minefield of feelings to navigate.
We might sometimes wish to return to the simplicity of toddler tantrums, but we must instead forge new ground as we walk alongside our kids with their teenage emotions. But how?