Tag Archives: Growing Up

…Just Too Young…

Just lately I’ve got really fed up with seeing young girls (I mean under 14-year-olds) constantly updating their Facebook relationship statuses… ‘in a relationship’, ‘single’, ‘in a relationship’, ‘single’ again and again…they appear to be defined by the relationship status they post.

When I was 12, I was lost in books, drawing or still playing with dolls! I had no wish to have a boyfriend. That doesn’t mean I didn’t experience infatuation or crushes, but I didn’t need to act upon them. However, the operative words at that age are ‘infatuation’ and ‘crush’ which is what they usually are!

I had friends who were boys, I hung out with boys…but I didn’t need to date them. Plenty of time for that after I grew up a bit!

I had my first boyfriend at 17 and married my 4th boyfriend a week before I was 20. I enjoyed the flirting and the chasing for a few years before I began dating and relished the advice not to get serious so fast. I wish I’d kept that one better, once bitten, twice shy… Young teens don’t need the emotional pressure of serious relationships, it’s hard enough at 17, let alone 14!

Teens seem to think that getting a boyfriend or girlfriend is the be all and end all, and much of the media perpetuates this. I truly wish children and teens these days had more self-esteem and more self-respect, that they didn’t think everything depended on having the ‘right’ boyfriend, wearing the ‘right’ clothes and being cool.

I wish children could stay children longer and teens were allowed to use their teenage years to find themselves before they look for a partner! Why do kids want to grow up so soon these days?

I saw these two great videos on You Tube and thought I’d share them with you… turn the volume down a tad though, this is one enthusiastic lad!

I love how he advocates self-respect for both sexes and some great advice:

Be willing to wait for the right guy, respect yourself, be kind, learn about the things he likes, make him feel needed, support chivalry, be liberated from Hollywood, set boundaries (if he’s the right guy he’s not going anywhere!), be yourself (if being yourself isn’t good enough for someone then they’re not good enough for you!).

Find out what she likes, encourage her, compliment her, know her family/friends, be chivalrous, don’t post phone self-portraits all over Facebook, don’t get too heavy, keep your hands to yourself (love the chocolate bar analogy!), make her feel safe, be her best friend.

These days, we see children growing up way before we used to when I was a kid, and everything is pushed earlier and earlier…

I hope I don’t sound too preachy, but I really wish children were given more chances to be children, and that teens were encouraged more to be themselves, to learn who they are and to build friendships before relationships!

is it just me…or are they trying to grow up faster and faster?

A Decade of Growing Up…

Sometimes it’s hard to imagine your children ever growing up…then, all of a sudden they’ve gone and done it…

I’ve noticed my older two maturing, it’s hard to miss when one towers over you and the other measures himself against you almost daily – ready to point out that he is taller than you – the very moment he is, he’s not yet, I’ve still got a few millimetres on him…but today it was the turn of my youngest. It was time for me to stand back and allow her her own decisions.

I’m a control freak…hard to imagine, but no really, I am…and my ‘control freakiness’ has sometimes got in the way of my children’s freedom to choose.
There’s been the odd Christmas, over the years, when my choice of present for a child seemed much better than the scribbled choice on their list…I bought my choice, then couldn’t understand when it didn’t get played with as much as I’d imagined it would! I learned that one the hard way and bought their choices after that, better value, even if I didn’t like it!

Today Caitlin and I were going through her wardrobe, chucking out clothes that are now too small, when she picked up one top and said, ‘You know I’m never going to wear this don’t you?’ I gave a sideways smile, and replied, ‘But I really like it.’ ‘That’s the point,’ she said, ‘you like it, but it’s not me.’
This happened several more times, with a dress and with a pair of boots. The boots were difficult. I bought cute Clarks, black leather ankle boots in a charity shop for only £2…a bargain! They were a couple of sizes too big when I bought them a few years ago and I put them away for Cait when she got older. It didn’t bother me that she disliked them on sight when she was eight…she’d appreciate them one day…
So every year or two I got them out and said, ‘Try these on…they’re lovely…’ and with a grimace and humouring Mum she’d try them on. ‘Ok, maybe next year.’ I’d tell her ignoring the unhappy expression on her face…after all, they were Clarks, and leather and only £2…
Today, I tried again…but though she tried them on and they fitted, I think they’ve fit for a while…it dawned on me that they weren’t the bargain I’d thought they were…
I asked myself how I would feel if I was coerced into wearing something that wasn’t me, or even that I just didn’t like…and I realised that Caitlin was completely able to choose for herself.
The boots went into a charity bag…and maybe they’ll be someone else’s bargain…

I noticed as my daughter tried on clothes and chatted away that she wasn’t my ‘little’ girl anymore, she was a burgeoning rosebud, blossoming into something more than even she can imagine…and it’s about time I noticed!

My children are becoming themselves…

In the ten years from 2001 to 2011 Caitlin, Dan and Bekah have grown up, Caitlin from one to eleven, Dan from five to fifteen and Bekah from eight to eighteen…
I love watching them grow…I love watching them change, I love hearing their opinions develop and evolve, I gain pleasure from the knowledge they collect and from the wisdom they share, I learn from them, I love watching the adult form within them…
I love them and love the way they love me back… 
(Please do not use or reproduce any photographs of my children)