There needs to be a universal symbol however when you are entering the home of a teen, especially a teen girl. That way you know you are on thin ice and that anything you say is liable to be taken sideways, turned around and inserted backwards, to not resemble anything you said or were trying to say at all.
Something seems to happen in our brains around age 12 or so, call it hormones, puberty, asserting independence, hell, call it the exit of all common sense if you'd like, the point remains the same. It's somewhere along this time with each and every flock member so far where they have decided that running their mouths, back talking, and even going so far as to basically tell a parent to shut up has occurred Yes, this is all a part of growing up and learning how to and how NOT to respond to matters in the real world, but at what point does it go past that and turn into a lack of respect?
I've heard its all in how they are raised, kids are given to much freedom, not enough freedom, they aren't taught manners or what respect is, they are given to much, they aren't made to do chores or don't know what it is to work for something, and almost always someone, somewhere, pulls the discipline card. If you had (insert speakers favorite discipline here) when they were younger you wouldn't have this problem now. More often than not that comment has been said by someone whose children are either still young or doesn't even have children yet. I always want to say "Yeah, because I spent the first 11 years teaching them it was ok to argue with me!"
Fact of the matter is however, for the most part the entire flock is very well behaved. Yes, they do have their moments where they could make a preacher cuss, but on the whole, we rarely go more than a couple of days without someone praising the actions of at least one of them. People have stopped me in the middle of the grocery store to compliment me on their manners, good behavior & willingness to help not only me but those around us as well. I don't know how many times I've been asked how do I manage keeping the flock under control, I almost always respond with "They are good kids!", and I make sure they hear that. Because they are, each and every one of them is a good kid. Right down to the one who is going thru his "big & bad" phase, and they need to know & hear us say that they are good kids. Each and every one of them would drop what they are doing to help someone in need, I've seen them do it repeatedly. In the end that's one of the most important things we can instill in our children, there is the respect, the glimmer of hope our world needs.
Yes, tempers were lost this morning, and a talk is in order for this afternoon. The prescribed discipline will still stand as flat out disrespect and disobedience are not now, nor has it ever been, a welcome addition to the household. It isn't about shutting a child up, squashing who they are, robbing them of themselves or their independence, rather it's about teaching them to do it constructively, respectfully and smart. So that once they enter the real world they understand that doing things the right way is much more rewarding. So yes, a certain teen and I will be discussing how we each could have handled ourselves better this morning because this is not only a learning process for them, but every day provides a parent with the opportunity to learn and grow as well.