|« WOW IFHI In Tempe Arizona In May!||Someday it will warm up again! »|
Does the title sound like a headline ripped from a National Enquirer paper? Posting has been less than optimal for the past few months as I have had to put most of my extra time in keeping my teenage son on the straight and narrow.
B is 15 but relates much better to 18+ young adults. This turned into a huge problem before Christmas when he started seeing a 17 year old girl and became friends with a 21 year year old young man and on top of everything had his wisdom teeth extracted. All of a sudden my funny vibrant son became sullen, mean, and condescending to his family and old friends. He crossed a proverbial line when he told me to go "somewhere" so my husband and I decided we could take extreme action.
The teenager (and I) have been under house arrest since before Christmas. The only things he has been allowed to do is go to the gym and go snowboarding. No computer, no telephone, no talking to the outside world except when snowboarding and working out. He has been sleeping 10 hours per night. (Girlfriend would keep him up on the computer for hours on end so he would only sleep 4 hours per night!!!!)
All I can say, he has come through the experience 4 inches taller, no 41 in Canada on the FIS Boarder Cross circuit and his marks have shot straight up. So now my solitary confinement with my teenager is almost over, I can honestly say I have some sound parenting advice for parents:
1. Teenagers need sleep and lots of it. Even though researchers said teenagers clocks shift, I have found my son, when deprived of TV, computers, and phones, will go to bed at an appropriate time and sleep the right # of hours.
2. The lure of peer pressure can be broken but only with involvement of parents. As I explained to B, one can only get the freedom of being an adult when one takes on the responbilities of being an adult. Many of the young adults I have encountered seem to have all the freedoms but none of the responsibilities. As a matter of fact, these parents' of these youngsters give the freedom but shoulder the responsibilities for the young adult. When I started loading up the responsibility level on my son, he realized his friends were immature, whiny and controlling!!! He was then able to see how important the choice of friends is.
3. It takes a lot of time to raise good children. One needs to be like a good supervisor and keep handing more and more responsibility to the kid while allowing more freedom. If the freedom is abused, it has to be taken away immediately and restored through additional responsibility.
4. Boys need lots of physical activity in order to stay "centered" and happy. I think 2 hours a day is a minimum at least 5 x per week!!!!
To close, I am finally back and ready to blog once again.