I work with teenagers day in and day out. I typically have to put myself in their shoes to try and garner even a slight understanding of where they’re coming from, because let’s be realistic, no teenager ever fully believes you have ever experienced what they’re going through – and in a way it is different times, so it’s kind of true. Some of the kids I have come across in my time struggle immensely with the desire to be grown up at such a young age and feel that they’re able to make all their decisions and make them without any harm. Recently I got to thinking about some of the common experiences and emotions they experience and wondered if I could write something up that summed up some of those teenage thoughts, but pair it with a bit of perspective from the future.
Things that are difficult as a teenager
from a past teenager
- As a teenager there are emotions going on in my head ALL THE FREAKING TIME. Many times I feel like I can’t get a break from them and just want to SCREAM! One minute I’m happy, the next minute I’m sad, the next minute I want a new life, and before you know it, I’m happy all over again. It makes me tired!!!!!!!!
- Know that over time things will start to even out. You will start to feel “normal” at some point, but it will take time. Take solace in the fact that you have people around you who care about you more than they care about themselves. Millions of teenagers all over the world don’t have anyone who cares about what happens to them. That, is truly sad.
- What’s wrong with boys and girls, why can’t relationships just be easy? One minute I think I like someone and the next minute I’m not sure or they’re not sure. Sometimes this seriously causes me anxiety and feels like I will never have anybody in my life who loves me in that way.
- Know that relationships in your mid-twenties and so on, make much more sense. Plus, having been able to have your emotions even out, helps dramatically.
- As a teenager you feel like that one person you meet is THE ONE. Guess what – you were unnaturally thrown together via the school system. If it wasn’t for that you likely wouldn’t know the person. Meeting someone when you’re older, in an organic way, which you have a choice in, makes those relationships so much better.
- Being happy with yourself, your life, and what you’ve accomplished, will always lead to a better relationship. The downside – this takes time. Give it time. Those around who care about you promise it will all work out.
I CAN’T DO WHATEVER I WANT – AHHHHHHHHH:
- What do you mean I can’t go out with my friends and do whatever I please? What do you mean I’m not responsible enough? What do you mean I don’t know what life is about? Why doesn’t anyone believe in me? Don’t you trust me?
- I promise that the people in your life do trust you, find that you’re responsible, and believe in you. But all those things I was angry with my parents about suddenly made sense when I was about 20-25. I looked back and said, “I’m glad they didn’t let me do this,” or “I’m glad they didn’t let me hang out with that person.” Do you know why I thought this? Because I was the person who was succeeding, and I was the person who was making good choices, and I was the person who had a mind of my own and kept myself out of trouble. I know it’s hard to understand this at 16/17 years old, but if you trust my guidance and my knowledge, I feel confident in saying that in a few years you’ll understand exactly what I mean.