What comes to your mind when you see the word, "parenting"? I'm sure a lot of mixed emotions. It can be a love/hate thing that goes on in your mind. And only because we love our kids so much that we hate some of the choices they make. We want them do what is right and when they don't it hurts, not only them but us, and sometimes the pain is unbearable.
I have experienced this kind of pain as a parent many times, as I know many of you have as well. But regardless of the pain, I would never change the privilege of being a parent!
As our babies become teenagers and seem to need us less, which, by the way is NOT true! The need is just different! They need us to be someone who listens to them more, not someone "telling them what to do" with a finger pointed at them, yelling! As a teenager this is the time they need us the most. Life is tough for them, pressure is all around to do things they don't necessarily want to do. And hey, sometimes they do want to do things they shouldn't. But that doesn't mean they don't need us, their parent, fighting for them. Just make sure the "fight" isn't with them. I know that can be easier said than done! Boy, do I know that! And sometimes you do need to get angry, just NOT out of control!
If you've been struggling with your teen and your not pleased with the way you have handled certain situations, something I always say to do, and will continue to say, is, sit down and TALK. Have a for real CONVERSATION! How do you do this if your teen refuses? Of course there are several ways you can handle it, but what is going to be the most effective way? You may need to take some time to truly think about that. What works for one family may not work for another. One thing I do know, is a humble person asking nicely does wonders. You may need to try a few different approaches. You may want to write down the things you want to talk about, to help you stay on topic instead of going in ten different directions. And as you "listen" remember NOT to take things they say personal.
One last thing...don't beat yourself up! Parenting is not an easy task! Stay with it, don't give up!