After publishing That Damn Girl Stuff: A Mother Truth, I wondered to myself if I had it in me to write a sequel. The purpose of the book is to encourage mother's to talk to their daughters for empowerment sake. When I listen and talk to my daughter it breaks my heart to realize so many moms aren't.
I know things about young girls that their moms are not privy too. I know these things because my daughter openly shares them with me. One young girl had her first kiss and won't tell her mom because she fears being grounded. Another young girl identifies as pansexual and her parents don't know. The first girl is eleven and the other is twelve.
I know things about my daughter I wish I didn't but all of it continues to fuel our conversations. I encourage her to always have someone to talk to even if it's not me but don't seek advice from other teenage girls. They are navigating the same murky sexual waters as her.
Sometimes addressing teenage drama takes some parenting skills I lack. My daughter and I were crying the other night because I told her I didn't want to be a parent anymore. I expressed to her the heartache and worry a parent goes through while watching their children mature. I shared with her times I think I messed up while parenting and she agreed while saying it wasn't all my fault. I'm honest with her in hopes that she will be honest with me. Because of this she speaks freely in front of me even when I don't want to hear it.
I was listening to a conversation she had last night with a friend while playing Roblox in my room. She wouldn't leave even though I asked her to many times. She would jump on my bed, hug me and say no and get back on the floor to continue her game and conversation. Her and this friend were talking about another mutual friend and her boyfriend drama. I told her to stop talking about the other friend because she was gossiping behind her back and she wouldn't appreciate her friends doing that to her. They didn't stop right away but I threatened to make her shut off all devices if she didn't stop.
Before getting to that point I listened to some of what they were saying. Now, I'm waiting for my daughter to wake up so we can discuss the drama that is this teenage murky mess. The friend they were discussing plans to try and manipulate her young romance by dating another boy who supposedly likes her. I know for a fact this same boy liked my daughter and when she didn't return his interest he started being mean to her. The girl in question also knows this boy liked my daughter but never told her. I found out she knew because she told her mom who told me.
The other thing is the mom of the girl she was talking to made her daughter sever the friendship with the girl they were discussing because she made an erroneous assumption. I know this mom was listening as well and now she has fuel with which to run down this young girl. Based on what I knew she seems the type but I could be wrong. I feel like I'm watching a bad teen movie and no one will let me leave.
I plan to talk to her about all of these things, gossip, manipulation and saying the wrong thing in front of the wrong people. I do my best to teach my daughter to value and respect her friendships especially in a day and age of disposable everything. We also have an agreement that the only time I will intervene is if I feel one of her friends is on the verge of putting themselves in harms way. I warn her of the consequences of lost friendships if that should ever happen.
For the last couple few days we've been discussing telling a mom about he daughter possibly hurting herself. She text my daughter that she was going to hurt herself but she couldn't find a knife. Instead she scratched the first letter of her boyfriends name in her arm with a coat hanger. I explained to my daughter that I don't believe she couldn't find a knife in the kitchen of her house but that she did want cause herself physical pain to match the emotional pain she's feeling. I also told her it is not her responsibility to carry the burden of her friends pain.
My daughter knows I was suicidal as a teen and I told her I would talk to her friend without telling her mom but I wouldn't force myself into the situation. I explained there is something missing in her friends life that she can't provide beyond friendship and listening. Then I told her I had an idea of creating a mother/daughter swap group where young girls could go to another mother for advice instead of getting bad advice from their friends. She thought it sounded like fun.
Y'all, I'm living adolescence again. I find it sad, amusing and necessitates conversations with our kids. I read my daughters text, scroll through her photos, and check her browser history. She knows I do all this and it helps keep her honest most of the time. I don't my child or any of my extra kids hurt so I make myself available. At this age I'm not trying to be my daughters friend. My main goal is to help her grow into an adult who makes decisions based on wisdom and knowledge, not gossip and pressure from others.