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Little Kids, Little Problems.

Today I was thrust into the world of child and adolescent psychology.  Before lunch I rounded on a bunch of young girls who are ALL being hospitalized for an eating disorder;  Oh, and one girl who hates her life so much that she wants to die.  Then, I was asked to consult on a “young man” whose mom thinks he is depressed because he is failing school and spends all his time in his bedroom, tweeting and blogging on his phone.  I don’t mean to minimize the importance of these problems; they are quite serious.  However, the whole experience really got me thinking…

I was a teenager not too long ago and I’d like to think I remember the challenge that it was to get from 13 to 18 unscathed.  I hated my parents, I spent my fair share of time in my bedroom, I wanted to die at some point… but I made it through.  This is agross oversimplification of (quite possibly) the worst 5 years of my life and I would never wish those horrid years to return;  nonetheless, I definitely know now that life’s challenges are worse now than they were then.  They are just different.

And while I remember how horrible it was to be a teenager, I am beginning to think that being a parent of a teenager may be even worse still.  OMFG, can I take back yesterday’s post?  Maybe if they never grow up I can learn to live with, and accept, the small challenges that go along with parenting toddlers.  But alas, I know that is never the case.

I can already sense that little E. is ready to move to the next stage.  He didn’t want his beloved boobie as much this weekend as he has in the past… And tonight, as I breast-fed him to sleep (one of the times he still longs for boobie time with mommy), I took a few extra minutes to stroke his perfect, beautiful, sleeping baby face and burn the moment into my head.  My little boys will grow up, and they will torment me more than I can ever imagine.

Maybe if I’m lucky, I won’t screw them up and they won’t hate their lives in 15 years from now.  Hopefully I won’t ever be that concerned, forlorn, helpless mother that I saw in the emergency room today, because I can’t possibly imagine my sweet, innocent children hating life to the fullest extent.

4 thoughts on “Little Kids, Little Problems.

  1. When teens have serious issues like eating disorders, depression, self mutilation it sometimes has nothing to do with their environment and how they were brought up as much as the brain chemistry and development that they’re going through in puberty. It’s kind of like when a girl gets her first menstrual period, some girls suffer with it more than others. I don’t think you could mess your kids up unless you were terribly neglecting them or beating them so you shouldn’t have much to worry about. Though I have known a lot of parents, my mother included, who would not want to do it over — ever. Good luck, Cranky G. You have time though, maybe they’ll make some kind of breakthrough on how to survive your teenagers. 😀


  2. It is not surprising that so many girls have these types of issues. Look at the woman that they are shown as the picture of beauty – crazy thin, etc. i am sure it must be hard to raise a girl and have her have positive self esteem.


  3. I’m terrified to raise a teenager. Scared beyond scared. I was a pretty happy, sheltered teen, which I’m learning is ridiculously rare. Just hoping my son follows suit 10 years from now!


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