This is the new Subway commercial.................verbatim!
A young girl, 13/14ish is narrating:
"Everything is decided for me- when to get up, what to wear, what to read, and, of course, when to go to bed. But, at Subway I have the power to choose and I EAT IT UP!"
Sadly, this is the reality for most kids. And we wonder why teenagers rebel. I can't imagine how I would feel if my husband tried to make those same decisions for me. Why is it that we think kids feel so much different than ourselves and why, even more, do we feel that kids aren't capable of making their own decisions? Especially when it comes to their own bodily functions! I hear so many parents state that if they allowed their teens to make their own decisions that they won't make good ones. The problem is that these same kids have never been allowed to make their own decisions so they have no self-control or self-discipline to pull from when they are allowed to make their own decisions.
My kids have been allowed to make their own decisions about their lives. The only decisions that they don't have a lot of control over is things like going places when they can't drive, etc. On those things, we decide together so that everyone is happy, at least mostly happy. We try to come to a middle ground on all things. I don't deal with teenage rebellion, thank goodness! True democracy exists in our household and it works pretty darn good.
I'm thankful that, through a series of life experiences, I begin to examine how I was doing things, how it was when I was a child; how I felt when I had decisions made for me and was treated unfairly, and how I wanted them to be different for my family. And, starting with my sister, Ren, thank you to all you wonderful people (mostly unschoolers) who challenged me to think outside the box. Because of you, and my willingness to listen, I enjoy a joyful family life and I REALLY, REALLY enjoy my teens!!!
I'm sorry to everyone out there dealing with "teenage rebellion". Maybe you should back up and start living in their shoes for a day and see how it feels. Remember how you felt when you were a teen and all your life decisions were made for you, down to sitting in that prison we call school when you had to ask to even go to the bathroom, when you were told when to eat, how to learn, when to learn, what to learn, and all those other decisions that the adults in your life made for you. Think how different things could have been for you had the adults in your life trusted you and allowed you control of your life. Just imagine!