10 Reasons I Love Parenting My Teens

Though I’ve shed plenty of tears over my three teenage daughters, I have never subscribed to the belief that the teenage years are inevitably difficult for a parent to enjoy. There may be times, ages, and stages when times get hard, but overall, parenting a teen is a glorious thing, and I’ve enjoyed it more than even I expected I would. Here now are the 10 Reasons I Love Parenting My Teens.

10 Reasons I Love Parenting Teens

  1. I have SO enjoyed their more sophisticated sense of humor. These kids crack. me. up. AND they “get” my jokes, and almost always laugh.
    Hannah and Maddy Busted Tees

    Hannah (left) and Maddy (right) in their “punny” T-shirts.

    abby and maddy goofing off

    Abby (left) and Maddy (right) goofing off during recent family photos.

  2. I also love that my teens are beginning to share my interests. Movies, musicals, reading, writing – I love talking to them about these topics! And I love that they always have something to say, something to add to the conversation. We turn up our favorite songs and sing together in the car, we watch favorite chick flicks, we just…share.
  3. They come to me as a trusted sounding board.  Now, they don’t always open up right away, or even every time they’re troubled. I have worked very hard at watching for the signs that they need to talk, and even harder at my “approach.” When I do it just right, they visibly deflate with relief and tell me what’s going on. Teens will not always admit this, but they need you to listenThey need your carefully-worded advice. Popular myth will tell you that teens could care less about what you have to say, but that is simply NOT TRUE. They just want to know that you can suppress your own ego/worries/expectations and just hear them.

    wit hannah and abby on the MAX

    With Hannah (middle) and Abby (right), on our way to see Maddy march in a parade. These bonding moments are so important!

  4. I love watching as they develop more mature friendships. Gone are the days of meeting on the playground and becoming best friends over the monkey bars. Teens learn so much during these years about trust, loyalty, and sacrifice. It makes me proud how deeply my daughters care for their friends.
  5. I also love watching as interests grow into passions. With an increase in experience, confidence, and hopes for the future, my daughters have started holding a bit tighter to their talents and taking themselves more seriously. And well they should.
    marching band

    Maddy (left) is Drum Major for her marching band. Hannah (right) played four years of flute and piccolo in her marching band.

    abby is our swimmer

    Abby is our swimmer and also play water polo.

  6. “I love you, Mom” isn’t an auto-response as it can sometimes be with younger kids. When my daughters tell me they love me, they mean it, and sometimes they mean more. Like “Thank you, Mom,” and “I appreciate you, Mom,” and “I can’t believe you put up with some of my garbage, but I’m so glad you do, Mom.”
  7. It’s exhilarating to be this near to someone whose possibilities are endless. I have never tried to vicariously live through my teens, but I am keenly aware of the open road that stretches before them, and I feel a companionable excitement at the opportunities ahead.

    At my oldest daughter's graduation (Hannah, in the middle).

    At my oldest daughter’s graduation (Hannah, in the middle).

  8. With their growing independence and capabilities, I finally see how all the endless work of mothering is paying off.  When your kids are little, it’s hard to see what kind of positive cumulative affect comes from chore charts, time-outs, playdates, or the willingness to watch the same Disney movie for the 40th time. But what used to feel like a hamster wheel is finally starting to look like successful line cast into the future.
  9. My teens are much more aware of how they fit into a community. I love watching as they learn to serve others, have compassion for those in need, and use their time and abilities to improve the lives of others.
  10.  They are just so stinkin’ fun to be with!  They love to laugh, play jokes, make memories.  They have adventurous spirits and are usually “game” for just about anything.
snow angels

Maddy and Abby, making snow angels this winter.

maddy jumping

Maddy, soaring through the air.

  • Thank you so much for your kind comments on my blog.

    Great top 10 list. I hope I enjoy the teen years as much as you seem to be. I have 4 girls and I tell you at time that fact freaks me out. LOL. Have a great evening!
    .-= Julia´s last blog ..Motherless Daughters and Becoming a Motherless Mother =-.

  • Thank you so much for your kind comments on my blog.

    Great top 10 list. I hope I enjoy the teen years as much as you seem to be. I have 4 girls and I tell you at time that fact freaks me out. LOL. Have a great evening!
    .-= Julia´s last blog ..Motherless Daughters and Becoming a Motherless Mother =-.

  • “It’s exhilarating to be this near to someone whose possibilities are endless. ”
    Wow I love this statement. It sums up parenting for me.

    I’m so glad to hear a mom of tweens embracing it and not enduring it. God Bless!
    .-= Janna @ The Adventure of Motherhood´s last blog ..I Put Mabels Labels to the Test: Watch My Video =-.

  • “It’s exhilarating to be this near to someone whose possibilities are endless. ”
    Wow I love this statement. It sums up parenting for me.

    I’m so glad to hear a mom of tweens embracing it and not enduring it. God Bless!
    .-= Janna @ The Adventure of Motherhood´s last blog ..I Put Mabels Labels to the Test: Watch My Video =-.

  • Sheri

    I love this! I used to be so afraid of this age, but now that I have a teenager and a tween, I’ve decided that when I get my degree in library science, I want to work in a middle school. It is a tough age, but the rewards of taking the time to get to know them and listen to them are endless. This is when they need us the most, and it is very rewarding to start to see the adult they’re going to be. And funny, oh my gosh! There are times when I can’t eat my dinner because of all the sarcasm and jokes at the kitchen table – and I love it! I even love seeing bits of my husband and I in our boys.

    Beautiful daughters, by the way 🙂
    .-= Sheri´s last blog ..Top Ten Tuesday – Things my kids have said =-.

  • This is great!! Teens get such a bad so often … thanks for pointing out the good side:)

    And thanks for linking up!

  • This is great!! Teens get such a bad so often … thanks for pointing out the good side:)

    And thanks for linking up!

  • Oh thank heavens – something to look forward to!
    .-= lifeinapinkfibro´s last blog ..Time waits for no Muse =-.

  • Oh thank heavens – something to look forward to!
    .-= lifeinapinkfibro´s last blog ..Time waits for no Muse =-.

  • With two little girls, and all the drama already!, I’ve been worried about the teenage years. Thanks for such an encouraging and hopeful post. I’m looking forward to many of the things on your list, especially shared interests and then seeing their interests grow into passions. Here’s to daughters!
    .-= Amber @ Because Babies Grow Up´s last blog ..Top Ten Reasons I Love Birthdays =-.

  • With two little girls, and all the drama already!, I’ve been worried about the teenage years. Thanks for such an encouraging and hopeful post. I’m looking forward to many of the things on your list, especially shared interests and then seeing their interests grow into passions. Here’s to daughters!
    .-= Amber @ Because Babies Grow Up´s last blog ..Top Ten Reasons I Love Birthdays =-.

  • Sheri

    I love this! I used to be so afraid of this age, but now that I have a teenager and a tween, I’ve decided that when I get my degree in library science, I want to work in a middle school. It is a tough age, but the rewards of taking the time to get to know them and listen to them are endless. This is when they need us the most, and it is very rewarding to start to see the adult they’re going to be. And funny, oh my gosh! There are times when I can’t eat my dinner because of all the sarcasm and jokes at the kitchen table – and I love it! I even love seeing bits of my husband and I in our boys.

    Beautiful daughters, by the way 🙂
    .-= Sheri´s last blog ..Top Ten Tuesday – Things my kids have said =-.

  • Oh, I really love this! I hope all of these things are true about teenage boys (since I’m going to have one eventually!). 🙂
    I especially liked what you said about them needing you to listen. And about seeing all the more mundane parts of motherhood finally bearing fruit.
    Love, Alicia
    .-= Alicia´s last blog ..Top Ten on my Bookshelf =-.

  • Oh, I really love this! I hope all of these things are true about teenage boys (since I’m going to have one eventually!). 🙂
    I especially liked what you said about them needing you to listen. And about seeing all the more mundane parts of motherhood finally bearing fruit.
    Love, Alicia
    .-= Alicia´s last blog ..Top Ten on my Bookshelf =-.

  • Ally

    I know I’m just saying what everyone else already said, but it’s awesome to see that it is possible to enjoy those tough teenage years. Thanks so much for sharing this list with us–I hope your daughters get to read it too!

    BTW-what a beautiful family!
    .-= Ally´s last blog ..Modified Menu Plan—May 3rd to May 9th =-.

  • Ally

    I know I’m just saying what everyone else already said, but it’s awesome to see that it is possible to enjoy those tough teenage years. Thanks so much for sharing this list with us–I hope your daughters get to read it too!

    BTW-what a beautiful family!
    .-= Ally´s last blog ..Modified Menu Plan—May 3rd to May 9th =-.

  • My boys are still pretty young, but your list makes me feel a little better about the “hamster on the wheel” stuff we’re doing now!
    Hope when my are teenagers they’ll be great as well!
    Beautiful girls!
    .-= Lula lola´s last blog ..Lemon Twist Girl, Stay at Home Mom, Soap Maker? =-.

  • My boys are still pretty young, but your list makes me feel a little better about the “hamster on the wheel” stuff we’re doing now!
    Hope when my are teenagers they’ll be great as well!
    Beautiful girls!
    .-= Lula lola´s last blog ..Lemon Twist Girl, Stay at Home Mom, Soap Maker? =-.

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  • I’m quoting you from #7 in my Wed. post. Thanks again for the inspiration!
    .-= Janna @ The Adventure of Motherhood´s last blog ..Are Bloggers Hypocrites? =-.

  • I’m quoting you from #7 in my Wed. post. Thanks again for the inspiration!
    .-= Janna @ The Adventure of Motherhood´s last blog ..Are Bloggers Hypocrites? =-.

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