Fatherhood, Parenting

Does My Teen Have an Evil Twin?

evil twin

Dear Mr. Dad: If I wasn’t in the delivery room for my daughter’s birth, I’d swear that she had a secret, identical twin. Sometimes she’s delightful and lovely to be around, other times, she’s a nightmare. Some days she seems to love us and need us, other days she’s hateful and nasty. People keep telling me to relax, that’s she’s just a normal teen. I know they’re right, but her schizophrenic behavior is driving us crazy. Is there some way to get rid of some of the “downs” but keep the “ups”?

A: I wish that nature had come up with a better way for young people to discover their adult identity, but I’m afraid we’re stuck. Their logic-defying careening back and forth between being an irrational infant one second to being wise and wonderful the next is part of the deal. But think about it this way. While it’s confusing and painful for us, it’s got to be a lot worse for them.

Actually, if you think back really hard to when you were you daughter’s age. You may be able to remember how scary it felt at those times when you had no idea what you might do or what might come out of your mouth. You may be able to get back in touch with the emotional highs and lows you felt, how infuriating it was that no one understood you, and how frustrating it was that everyone insisted on treating you like a child and refused to give you the responsibility you (thought) you were ready for. You felt completely out of control—and you were right.

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Author: Armin Brott

Armin Brott is the proud father of three, a former U.S. Marine, a best-selling author, radio host, speaker, and one of the country’s leading experts on fatherhood. He writes frequently about fatherhood, families, and men’s health. Read more about Armin or visit his website, mrdad.com. You can also connect via social media: Facebook.com/mrdad, @mrdad, pinterest.com/mrdad, linkedin.com/in/mrdad, plus.google.com/+mrdad.

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