Sweat, Body Odor, Hormones, Drama, Peer Influence….AHHHH!
Even though I was a youth pastor to Middle School and High School Age students for years, and I geared up over and over for what it would be like when our own children hit the dreaded age of puberty, I still wasn’t quite prepared for all the varying dynamics that occur with each child. They are all so different, and have responded in varying ways, especially in terms of personal hygiene.
With our fourth child just hitting puberty, but our first girl reaching this life stage, I can’t begin to tell you the difference in not only how I address the issue of puberty, but also how I approach my parenting.
So much pressure is put on kids to “perform” these days, and their self esteem is shaped so drastically during these tween years, that we need to develop avenues that create open discussion. Encouraging their character and character qualities, instead of “what they do” or their “performance” instills a sense of worth that goes beyond winning or losing. Instead of just saying, “Great job scoring four points in your game,” which is our typical response, encourage perseverance and character building by sharing, “Great job in not giving up today, even when your team was down. It would have been easier to have a bad attitude, but you stuck with it. I’m proud of you for showing perseverance.”
How does this affect addressing the issue of changing hormones and puberty? Whether or not, we’re ready for these changes, it happens, and the lines of communication need to be open to assist in encouraging and assuring our tweens that everything is normal. Yep, with those increased hormones come noticeable differences like growth spurts and strange new odors, but it’s an exciting time, not one to be feared. We need to be ready to help them.
I can’t believe the number of tweens and teens I am around that really struggle with B.O. Parents need to step in immediately. Please, do this! Cruelly and insensitively, kids make fun of a child that smells, and that mocking can haunt a child for years. With simple steps of cleanliness, and so many amazing products on the market, there’s no need for that to happen to your child.
Earlier this year, I was spontaneously interviewed by nationally acclaimed author of Queen Bees and Wannabees, Rosiland Wiseman. Watch this video as we all share our expertise about the tricky tween years, and the challenges moms have faced ‘stopping their tweens’ stink.
Also, there are some great discussions going on at the Don’t Fret the Sweat Facebook page – as well as money saving offers and expert tips, tools and real life stories about how parents are helping their tweens become confident and self-reliant teens.
Keep your eyes open for some great coupons at Don’t Fret the Sweat Facebook Page
How have you dealt with this tricky life stage? Any advice for those still navigating the waters? If you aren’t there yet with your children, what are your biggest trepidations?
(This post sponsored by Blissfully Domestic and Unilever).