1) Please talk to us about things that aren’t school related.
I am defined by more than my GPA, how I did on my math test and whether or not the recess aid likes me. Obviously, you know that, but sometimes out of habit you only talk to your kids about school stuff.
2) Find out about colleges besides the top twenty and jobs besides doctor, lawyer, accountant.
I have an idea, lets not constantly ask Juniors and Seniors in High School whether or not they are considering Brown or Harvard. There is so much pressure to get into these schools and parents seem to pick the careers and schools that are literally the hardest to get into. We like to think we are different. If you know our unique interests help us think of other careers and schools that are not so typical.
*I title this picture: “Please don’t ever tell my friends you go to the Renaissance Fair”
3) Ask us what we think is fun (this actually changes over the years)
I love you mom and dad! My parents still get me I Love Lucy things. I loved loved loved I Love Lucy when I was 11. My tastes have changed (thank goodness) I have moved on from Hanson and Backstreet Boys (THANK GOODNESS). Our tastes change quickly and I know that my parents get my I Love Lucy calendars because they remember the sweet (annoying) little girl who tried to dye her hair red and actually asked for vitameetavegimin in the pharmacy, but come on, now I am seriously into Project Runway…do they have a calendar for that?
4) Don’t say ‘we want you to do your best’ and then ask why we got a B on our test.
If you really just want us to do our best, act really excited with anything higher than a C+, or anything we seem really excited about.
5) Please just listen, problem solve later
We never think we need help, so when we vent, even though you are the guru of all parenting and can solve all of our high school problems because you have been there, done that–don’t try to help us until we ask.
6) If you think we are a good kid with a good head on our shoulders, then give us a chance to show it, back off a little and watch what happens!
How can we a puppy show you he won’t run away if you never let him off the leash! Ok, horrible example, but you get it.
7) Give us time to unwind before asking us about our day
Some kids like to get a snack to unwind, some watch TV, some brood silently, some fight with siblings, whatever your kid’s habit is to unwind from a day at school, let them do it and then try talking about things that are non-school related.
8) Please have interests and hobbies other than US
Self-explanatory…ok not really I have to add a comment. You are cool too! Go out there, make us prepare dinner on our own a few times a month and join a bowling club or book group, anything really, it makes you calm and gives us a chance to have friends over without your permission (just kidding…but really go get some hobbies).
9) We semi-like sitting down to dinner and hearing about your day
Even though it looks like we are not listening, we usually are and secretly like family dinners.
10) Be willing to be our scapegoat
Anything uncool/lame/weird I do I usually blame on my parents. Please just be ok with this. If someone makes fun of an outfit I bought, then I tell them my mom bought it (sorry mom). When I didn’t want to do pot, I told people my parents were crazy and drug tested me (they didn’t really but it got people off my back). This works for both of our benefit and usually can keep us out of trouble, so just be willing to take the blame with our friends.