Pink Hula, I'm glad that your parents are working things out and I hope they communicate more and more with each other as well as you and your siblings! You make a lot of good points and I appreciate all that you have shared. I'll be 27 in a month, and although I'm still able to reflect back on my teen years fairly clear, it's a lot differant when your experiencing it! It can get confusing when your able to see both sides of the coin, so I do like hearing from teens and parents/guardians because there is a big difference in perspectives!
CraftyChef, I do see your points and I do agree that children and teens should have respect for their parents and be conciderate of their feelings, however, respect and consideration goes 2 ways! Growing up my mother would continuously promise me things and continuously broke her promises! Changing your mind once in a while is disappointing but if it becomes a habit, it not only affect the parent/child relationship but also affects that child's development and abilities to fiction normally in society! As a parent, if you can not afford to buy something or you feel it's unsafe for whatever reason, that child deserves to be told the truth! Saying next time or for your birthday or Christmas, and then not getting it is not only unfair, but also damaging to their psyche.
If Pink Hula's mother changed her mind about her going driving with her friend, Pink Hula deserves an explanation as to why! If the explanation is that three teens where recently killed in a car accident and as your mother I worry and feel that your friend needs more experience driving before you go out with her, well ok, that's reasonable and I'm sure she would understand that! But the main problem is that her Father said it was ok after a couple weeks, and then her mother changed her mind after her father allowed her to go out with her friend! So now you have both parents saying ok to a couple weeks, and then one says ok you can go, then after the fact, the other parent comes back and says no you have to wait longer, which isn't just confusing to the child, but also causes arguments between the parents who should have discussed it in the first place! Pink Hula sounds like a very respectable young adult, she's just confused about what she is and isn't aloud to do because her parents lack communication skills!
A lot of teens do seem to have the attitude that they know it all! I was one of them! They thing is, when you know it all then your not able to learn anything new! I learned that the hard way! And I know back when I knew it all, I was really just a scared little kid underneath it all! Teens act like they know it all because they want to be independent and have a freedom of choice. They don't have enough life experience to base their choices on and therefore make many mistakes! Mistakes are how we learn! As parents, we want to protect our babies, because to us they will always be our babies, and it's hard to let them go and become their own person! But the teens are a very special point in life in which each of us make the transition into adults. If we do not have the chance to experience the world and make mistakes under the love of our parents, then we are destined to fail!
You don't have to have sex or get drunk or high to know how it affects people! Go to a nursing home and your sure to find a lot of younger people in a perminant disability! My mother works at a state funded nursing home, where people who can't afford a private nursing home end up, and as a child I'd fill water pitchers and talk to the people. You want to scare some sense into a wreckless teen take them to a nursing home to visit the younger residents! A man who got drunk and tried to dive off the roof into the pool, missed the pool and is now a quadriplegic. A heroin addict who got so high he believed he could fly, fractured his spine in 3 places! And that's only 2 of them, there are many more! Most of them are very angry and bitter! Seeing people like that made me think twice when someone offered me a drink or drugs. Every time I was tempted or curious about trying a drug I read everything I could possibly find about it! All the scientific data as well as personal stories and experiences people wrote about. The only drug I've ever used is marijuana, and I personally believe it to be a medication! Tylenol, that anybody at and age can buy over the counter is far more dangerous and harmful than smoking a j! And that statement is backed by scientific facts and research! I would not recommend anyone try to drive while stoned because your reflexes are delayed! Marijuana is a natural narcotic, and it helps in relieving pain, increasing appetite, and it helps a lot of people sleep. As a recreational drug, basically it makes you feel more calm and relaxed, gives you the munchies, and can make you find things funny. Most people I have known, self included, tend to get really philosophical and discuss really deep thoughts! I personally believe the plant should be used for medical and spiritual needs, however, it is the most harmless drug that anyone could use, and I personally would prefer catching a teen smoking a joint rather than sniffing glue or drinking cough syrup or shootin heroin into their veins! The problem with cough syrup is that it can cause serious breathing problems, and so can huffing! Kids have died from that stuff! Heroin is so potint it can actually kill you the first time you use it! Ecstasy is another popular drug among teens and early 20s. It's great at first because it makes you feel like you love everyone and everything and everyone and everything loves you, but when it wares off you go into a deep depression that is so bad that you want to die! Many kids take their own lives or at least attempt to! If you have a history of depression, especially if your taking an antidepressant, you should not use any drugs because it can interact with the antidepressant and actually cause you to feel more depressed! If you are curious about drugs, as most teens are, talk to your doctor about how it may interact with any medications you may be taking. Doctors are not allowed to discuss things with your parents if you ask them not to. They will try to discurage you from using any drugs especially if your on medications or have health concerns. If you choose to try marijuana, make sure you get it from a reputable source that you can trust because some people lace it with other drugs like LSD or Ecstasy, which can make you really sick or even kill you if you ingest too much of it! Also note that smoking can cause bronchitis, especially if your prone to infections or have asthma. If you choose to try any type of drug, especially the really dangerous ones, make sure there is someone with you who's not using that can get immediate medical attention in case of an emergency or protect you from yourself in case you need to be! I knew a kid who had a really bad acid trip and truly believed his hand had turned into a dragon and was attacking him. He cut his own hand off!
Alcohol is a drug too! Many young people die from alcohol poisoning! It's ok to pass on a drink and it's ok to have one drink to see what it taste like. Don't go crazy and see how many you can drink! 2 or 3 drinks are more than enough! Drink some Gatorade to prevent a hangover and make sure you have a safe ride home or a safe place to crash for the night! And Girls, please be responsibly aware of your drinks and who your with because a lot of young girls are taken advantage of! A close friend of mine went to a party a few years back at a friends house. It was basically her and her one girlfriend and 2 guys that her friend had basically just met! All my friend remembers is having a beer, going to the bathroom, coming back and finishing her beer and talking to the one guy and then waking up in the morning with her underwear on the floor and her shirt was on backwards. The guy told her nothing happened and all her friend remembers is the 2 of them going into the bedroom. Both of them where drugged and they are sure that something happened! They didn't talk to each other after that incident for over a year because they where both so shook up over it!
As parents we want to protect our children from the mistakes we've made and the problems we've faced as young people. As teens we just want to experience life and have some freedom to make decisions for ourselves. Most teens who are rebellious are so because their parents are too strict. It's ok to want to protect your child from harm but they have to be given a reasonable amount of space to grow and learn, and mistakes are what gives us life experience. We can not expect our 14 year old to make a choice based on a mistake that we made and learned from at 14! All we can do is tell them what we know and stand by them and try to comfort them when they come home crying.
Forbidding something without explanation is not justifyable! For example, telling your daughter she's not aloud to have sex just because your the parent and you get to make that call is just as childish and immature as her saying I'm going to have sex just to spite you! Sitting down with her and explaining to her about your personal experiences and trusting her to make good decisions is a more effective and less frustrating approach! Maybe you got pregnant at 16 and had an abortion or gave the baby up for adoption and your embarrassed by that and think your daughter will hate you because of it. In actuality, by sharing your secret with her, your making that mother/daughter bond stronger and giving her a relavant reason to cross her legs and say no!