Poetry: On Raising Teens

I recall, eons ago, when I was neither adult nor child,
during a phase of life known as adolescence
or numerically, being a teenager.

I also recall later being
a male adult parent to three, at one point—
all three almost simultaneously fitting
the technical teenager definition.

We all age up, but teeny boppers, as was once
a more affectionate term, stay the same.
Someone is always oddly 13, 15, 17, or some
age of that hormonally unbalanced
and the musically misguided post-pubescence.

I recall that back then, I was often bored unless
in the midst of violent volcanic eruptions,
and even then, given time, I found them dreary.
Almost everything of interest
involved getting into trouble, things which
I confess to doing with reckless abandon.

Now I look around and see grandchildren,
mostly in some phase of teenage-ism,
some exhibiting familiar behavior, some not.
I see parents, once teens themselves, distraught
over viewing in their progeny reflections of
their former life, a past they seldom
confess or want to remember.

I have no solutions and few suggestions for
those raising difficult teen personalities, like me,
like them, maybe like my parents in the
years of the Great Depression or
WWI or II. But I smile slightly
and I sympathize greatly.

Two things in life are not for sissies:
raising teenagers and getting old. That,
having done both, I can swear to. But,
in the long run, they are worth it.

May we all live long, prosper,
and remember. “Tomorrow, and
Tomorrow, and So Forth.”

Look both ways as life transitions. Be mindful of the gaps in denial.

11 thoughts on “Poetry: On Raising Teens

  1. Well said, Bill. When asked about raising my own two kids, I often say parenthood is bittersweet. You have to accept the bitter with the sweet. My oldest is now raising a teenager of his own and going through the bitter phase. I reminded him of his own teen years. I said, “I always loved you but I didn’t like you much back then.” He laughed. And so goes the cycle of life. Happy Monday.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Interesting. I enjoy my teens. I think infancy and toddler times were more difficult for me. Of course, four were harder than two… So far, getting older is like “Oh you were used to…. now try this…” like one thing after another. I’m lucky. That’s all I can say really, I’m just lucky.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I just read some research on regrets by older people. One was being rebellious as a teen (me). Another was not having kids (not me). Actually, I enjoyed my teens (now 40-somethings) too until my world went insane. I survived. So far, so have they.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I have not either. Most I know who have not had their own children have raised step children. However, I do know of several where having children did not work out well in the long run. I charge long run problems to addiction (often by all concerned) and mental illness of some sort.

        Liked by 1 person

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