Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Mothers and Daughters – How Long? – Not Long

My daughter is ten. We had The Talk and she has read The Book.

Last night, the local hospital offered a community program for mothers and daughters. Even though we had The Talk, I thought it would be a good idea for her to hear it again from a doctor. The program was held in a hotel banquet room and the topic was “All Grown Up”. An OB/GYN spoke to the girls aged 9-12 about the changes they could expect over the next few years. The Doctor did a great job explaining, describing and answering questions.

There was a group of five girls from my daughter’s class. They sat in the front row and the speaker called them the giggling girls. The moms sat behind the girls in the second row. I know my daughter very well and knew that her hand would be the first one raised in the question and answer session. It was and she offered more of a commentary than a question. My daughter is growing up.

On the way home from the session it struck me…How long?

How long will it be before she walks ten feet in front of me at the mall?

How long before it is not “cool” to spend time with her family?

How long before her friends become the most important part of her world?

How long before she thinks her parents are “clueless”?

When will the dolls, stuffed animals and Littlest Pet Shop be replaced by cell phones, MySpace and fashion magazines?

I commiserated with my brother who has two adult children. He said that it is…Not Long…and wished me good luck. He told me not to worry because children eventually drift back. In his case, it occurred when his children were out of high school.

I am feeling a little sad….

Not Long


Martial Arts Mom said...

My daughter hit that stage at about 12 and she's 19 and still not as close as we once were. But I can see she is starting to come around now that she does not live at home. We get along alot better now than when we lived under the same roof! LOL

SueC said...

I think children hit that stage at different ages. You inevitabley reach the stage where your child's focus moves from inside the home/family to outside the home and with friends. My niece reached this stage aged about 12 (she's 15 now). My eldest son (almost 16) has not reached this stage yet but my younger son (14) reached it about a year ago - they are all different!

I think the important thing about the teenage years is that as parents you gradually need to alter your relationship from one of parent/child to one of adult/adult. You risk alienating them if you don't. Knowing how quickly to make this change - well that's an art form. Do it too quickly and they become 'lost' without your parental control. Do it too slowly and they feel patronised and resentful! We are in the middle of making this transition and are learning through a process of trial and error!

I reakon you have about 2 years before these changes start happening in your family - good luck!

Michele said...

Hi MAM and SueC! Thanks for sharing your stories and advice.

BBat50 said...

How long? Not much longer....

But the good news is that it becomes a pendulum. In the same day, my daughter is ashamed of admitting that I'm her father and way too cool to deal with anyone as corny as me. Hours later, she's leaning against me and looking for comfort.

You don't so much as lose them as have to endure outward attacks and issues reflecting internal growth issues. Don't take it personally. But it's not much fun.

Michele said...

Hi BBat50...Thank you for visiting my blog. A pendulum is a perfect way to describe it. There have been days when the pendulum swings faster than I can keep up!

You are's not much fun.