Thursday, October 7, 2010

Transitioning into the teenage years

One thing I noticed about Lesley-Anne this year was her change in temperament. For the past two years, she was angsty and often uptight and testy. I'm not sure if it's because of exam stress (aggravated by the PSLE) or the hormonal changes associated with puberty (probably both) but she was not always easy to be around. A casual remark could set her off unexpectedly and many a time, I would yell at her to snap out of it which of course would drive her into a blacker mood. I used to despair over what monster had taken over my angelic daughter.

The change this year was significant enough for me to notice. She's more relaxed and confident, less sensitive and and readier to laugh at herself. As a result, our relationship has improved tremendously as well as her relationship with Andre. This year, the two of them have quarrelled less and they've played together more. Funnily enough, Lesley-Anne likes to spend time in Andre's room and I hear a lot of laughter emerging from it, which is a good sign.

I credit part of the smooth transition to Lesley-Anne's school. It has a very warm and nurturing environment, and has without a doubt, helped her settle in the secondary school routine comfortably. She has made friends, especially with her fellow band members who are such a tightly knit group that when the sec 4 band members made their formal exit, there were lots of tears and what Lesley-Anne calls (with a shudder) "emo-ing".

This change is a huge relief to me - dealing with teenage issues is no fun at all. In fact, when Andre started getting sulky and throwing a hissy fit, I went, "no no no no no, you are NOT becoming a teen just yet!" I'm not sure if you can halt the teenage process out of sheer willpower but that sure ain't stopping me from trying.

For Andre's birthday, Lesley-Anne put in a lot of effort and thought into his presents. She gave him a couple of smooth stones (one she painted with the letter 'A' and another with a shuttlecock) and a bird to hang on his handphone.

She also made him a couple of signs for his room - one is a No Entry sign (which now proudly hangs on his door) and the other is a sidewalk star bearing his name.

I thought it was very sweet of her to do what she did and I love that the two of them are getting along so well now. Maybe it's also because Andre has matured a little and is less prone to pushing her buttons (which he's annoyingly good at). Whatever it is, I've waited a long time for them to be able to share the same space without biting each others' heads off. The fact that they can actually be friends, well... that's just a bonus.

So here's my encouragement to parents out there who are dealing with teenage angst: take heart! It doesn't last forever even though it may seem like it. Keep the communication channels open, be patient and in time, you'll likely get your delightful, personable child back again.


Karmeleon said...

Yeah, it seems to start around p4 in our house too! But so far I see improvements by sec 1 to sec 3.

monlim said...

My piano teacher used to say something happens to kids at p4 and they become contrary and argumentative! Thank goodness it goes away eventually :P

Monica Tan said...

Hi Monica,

Stumbled upon your blog by chance. I remembered you from my brief stay in Eusoff Hall! Just want to let you know that I enjoyed reading your blog very much! You have been a great source of inspiration!

Monica Tan

monlim said...

Monica: Oh gosh, talk about a small world! I remember you, you came in as a senior, right? Happy to reconnect again and thanks for popping by my blog!

Anonymous said...


I read one of your older posts on recommendations for Chinese books and I thought that you might wish to browse through some of the following books:

1)成语我ok(1) The (1) is more for like pri students whereas the 2nd and I think it is the last book of the installment 成语我ok is more difficult,suitable for sec. level.

2)词语手册 for Pri 1A all the way to Pri 6B. It is published under the Moe latest syllabus and elaborates more on the many 词语 in the Pri textbooks. Pity they don't have it for the sec. levels.

Hope all this helps! :)


monlim said...

Hui: They sound like books for tuition! Thanks for the rec though :)

Monica Tan said...

Yes, was in as a Senior. Was thankfully spared all the tekang :)

Find a lot of relevance in your sharing. Our children are around the same age - my boy is in P6 GEP and my girl, in P2.

We have the same set of challenges - sibling rivalry, boy not putting in enough effort in studies, children's chinese standard low etc. Your sharing help me realise thankfully that i am not alone :)

monlim said...

Nice to know we share more than a name! :D

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...