What may seem boring for a moment may become interesting the very next minute. They insist on attention from parents all of a sudden and suddenly the same attention irritates them - these groups of children are the tweens who are a confused lot most of the time. Read on to pick up tips on tween parenting
Defining a tween
Children fitting in to the age group of 8-13, also referred to as the prepubescent age are referred to as tweens. They have grown out of the kiddy phase and have not yet got into their teens. Typically this is a period between elementary school and early high school. Modern day tweens are smarter and more aware when compared to their yesteryear companions. Girls mature sooner than boys of the same age both physically and emotionally when compared to each other.
Understanding your tween
Tweens are children who need and don't need; it takes some time and effort to understand them and their needs. All parents have to do is play it by the ear and take it as it comes.
- Getting into tweens means that the child has already started the exercise of trying to get free from the family. They try to learn things for themselves, from their teachers, friends and from other people in their lives.
- They try to master skills such as learning to read and write without help, working out mathematics independently and grow to be skilled at playing. They don't expect much help from parents in most of their tasks.
- They have a propensity to grow stronger psychologically and begin keeping emotions at bay, their spotlight shifts to the world around them and they muse more on friends and others.
- There are lots of physical changes, these changes set in slowly and set in a rapid pace. As these children step into the end of their tweens, they have already attained puberty and there are noticeable physical changes in the body.
- Emotions keep swaying between bursting into tears very often for no reason to trying and controlling situations by themselves and proving that they are growing stronger. Parents are easy targets and all emotions turn into arguments with parents.
- Girls love to look their best, beautiful and attractive and go out all way to look good. Comparisons begin and gradually turn into competition which leads to ego problems among friends. Parents get to hear more complaints against friends and classmates or children of the same age group.
- Everything and nothing seems to irritate your tween, they need their parents time and attention and don't need it too. It gets difficult for the parent to understand their own child and their own child begins to pose as challenge for them.
- Tweens love to enjoy their time by themselves with little or no intervention from their parents.
Growing children are always a growing challenge for moms, in particular tweens. They need and yet don't need; they have their own manner of drawing attention of their parents and specially their moms. Moms worldwide face more or less identical problems with their tweens and at times begin wondering if they are losing their hold on their little one.
- Children draw within themselves into a shell and want to be left alone most of the times. Parents, in particular moms tend to get a little negligent about tweens and this becomes a big problem for both the parent and the child.
- Children seem to get upset for anything and everything; this is the time when parents should support them instead of losing their cool. The child should feel the support extended and should feel comfortable with the level of support extended.
- Tweens behave as teenagers but yet yearn for attention. Give them the right kind of attention and though they might want to be independent in their decision making, ensure that you help them arrive at final decisions if they need your support.
- Do not interfere too much, tweens hate this and they should at no point feel that you are extending your parental authority over them. This will make them grow hostile towards you.
Handling your tween
All your tweens look forward and need at this point of time is the right kind of attention from their parents. A little guidance, love and support will help them grow in a wonderful way. They will enjoy their relationship with you and you in turn will enjoy seeing them grow into independent adults. Children in general tend to spend more time with their moms than with their dads thus moms can benefit from the tips listed below in handling their tweens.
Top of the Page: Tween Parenting
- Children can accomplish a lot during this phase of their life; all they need is the right kind of moral support from their parents. They should feel the presence of support but it should not lead to interference.
- The foundation for the future of your children begins here. The experiences they experience both at home and school helps them in gaining self-confidence and making better decisions for their future.
- Your child wants to be more independent and enjoy more liberty at home; they might want to be left alone while going out or would want to stay alone at home while you are going out. Reassure yourself that your child is ready for such an ordeal. If you feel confident enough give them the chance after ensuring their safety. This will make them feel confident and more comfortable towards you. Also remember your teen is behaving like a teenager and is not one yet, this means monitoring is required though not from close quarters.
- The main issue with tweens is their ever-altering emotions - be prepared to see mood swings in your child. They will not have the same mood all the while, they might be very friendly one minute and quite irritable the next. Not to worry, give them their time, understand their problem, talk to them and make them feel comfortable towards you so that they gain confidence in you and confide into you.
- Talk to your tween freely and ask them questions which keep a flow in the conversation and cannot be answered with a mere 'yes' or 'no'.
- Let your tween express feelings.
- Learn to enjoy and relax while you handle your tween, this will help both your child and you to feel at ease with each other.