Are you parenting partying teens? Care to hear my ten tips for surviving party chaos? For surviving normal chaos? The planned, the unplanned, the assumed stuff of parenting pandemonium?
Yes, it’s Sunday morning. (Insert *sigh* of relief.) Yes, for the moment it’s quiet. (Sigh number two.) No teenagers as yet stirring in the kitchen, after another day of comings-and-goings, asking for the car keys, kids in, kids out, an evening of in and out, impromptu parties here and there and then here again, also known as Teen Grand Central, Teen Party Central, Single Mother Excedrin Headache Number 999. . . So much for my plan to “do nothing – effectively.”
Okay, it wasn’t that bad. Still, this morning, I thought I would share my expertise with those who have tweens and teens, so you may benefit from my professional status when it comes to dealing with planned and unplanned teen party activity.
And just to further impress upon you the depth of my experience, shall I term it Power Parenting, or better yet, Single Parent Power?
Ten Tips for Tolerating (Parenting) Teens (Without Excessive Alcohol):
Ready? Sitting down? Slouching? Here goes –
- Ear plugs (for the parents)
- Tracking devices (for putting around adolescent ankles)
- Synchronized watches / cell phones, for managing curfew
- Can the curfew; let them all sleep at your house, or somewhere viewable on Google Earth
- Martinis (I said without excessive alcohol)
- Pinot Noir, Cabernet Sauvignon, Bordeaux (if Martinis aren’t your thing)
- A good hairdresser (for the gray)
- A good hairdresser (for the gray – yes – it bears repeating)
- A wholesome addiction, like chocolate
- A sense of humor (perhaps the most important?)
- (Bonus item!) Perspective
Single mother of sons:
Seriously? I think for a single mom, or any mom, parenting sons through the teenage years is easier than parenting daughters. Perhaps it’s just my impression, but having two sons (and having observed mother-daughter interaction among friends), I’m counting my blessings, knocking on wood, and just happy to know that everyone is sleeping quietly in the house (and I can see the car keys).
Single or solo parenting through “routine chaos” isn’t for the faint of heart, but I’m fortunate. I give my kids specific guidelines, they don’t take advantage, I don’t fuss over 10 or 15 minutes late, I request check-ins by phone or text, and they know the rules about being safe – in all ways.
Is that a guarantee?
There are no guarantees. They’re kids! There’s only a balance of remembering what we were like as teenagers (may I repeat – a good hair stylist), reasonable limits, and a large dose of knowing your kid – how much responsibility he or she can exercise, and how close an eye you need to keep on everyone and everything. Come to think of it – keep that close eye no matter what. It can’t hurt.