I am the proud, and often fraught, mother of 2 teenage girls and one pre-teen in training (not to mention my 2 boys)!
My three daughters are emotional whirlwinds. Their moods can change in the space of 5 minutes. One minute we can be laughing and talking in the kitchen, the next minute there can be tantrums and doors slamming (from all four of us!).
Whilst I often feel like I don’t know what I did to deserve such behaviour, I actually know very well and it can be summed up in 3 words….. Karma’s A B*#ch!
Because I remember only too clearly that I behaved EXACTLY the same way in my teenage years. I remember very clearly feeling and acting totally erratically. Not having any sense of control over my emotions, my mouth, my actions, my feelings. I know I made my mother’s life “quite unpleasant” (an understatement!) and I now have a new found respect for her and the way she handled me with patience and calm.
However, all is not lost and my fate of suffering with all this drama is not sealed in stone. And that is because of the conversations I am having with my girls. I am blessed that we have the type of relationship where we are able to have open conversations about what is going on in THEIR BODIES. We have talked about their menstrual cycles, what hormones are at play at different times of the month, understanding how this affects them emotionally and what expectations they should have of themselves at different times of month.
These are things that teenage girls DO NOT usually hear at school, from their parents, friends or from female role models. Teenage girls today as bombarded with so much “fake facts”, body shaming, social pressure, personal angst, photo-shopped images, and picture perfect selfies on Instagram, that there is no space or value placed on being real! This only heightens the natural hormonal and emotional roller-coaster ride going on in their bodies.
So what are the most important things you should be talking about with your daughters?
1. Fluctuating hormones is a normal, healthy, natural part of being a female.
It doesn’t matter what stage of life you are at – pre-menstrual cycle, menstrual cycle, pregnancy or trying to get pregnant, peri-menopause, menopause or post menopause – EVERY stage brings its own unique hormonal cycle and related emotional state. Once you understand your stage, what hormones are dominant, how these hormones affect you and your behaviour, you can move forward with more understanding, awareness and clarity.