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wundayatta's avatar

As a teen (or former teen), how well do (did) you get along with your parents?

Asked by wundayatta (58525points) January 29th, 2013

I had a conversation with my daughter last night in which she said that none of her friends had a good relationship with their parents.


They all seemed to be fighting over one or more things. She is 16 and has friends her age who are pregnant, engaged to be married, do drugs, drink, and have sex with multiple guys (not at the same time as far as I know).

They still feel their parents are overly restrictive. They feel they can’t talk to their parents. I’m betting they feel misunderstood.

Only one girl says that her mother is ok with her drinking, so long as she doesn’t drink near the mother. I’ve told our kids they can drink, and if they do, I want them to do it at home or only where they are safe. Funny thing. They are far more vehemently against drinking than anyone I know, and I think it is sincere. Reverse psychology anyone?

Anyway, she was asking me how to be a parent that her children would not hate. She feels like all her friend hate their parents, but she doesn’t. Obviously, it feels good to hear this. Makes us feel like we did something right.

But she says all her friends hate their parents. This cannot be. So I ask you current teens what your relationship with your parents is like, and you former teens, if you can remember what you felt back then, can chime in, too.

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18 Answers

Pachy's avatar

As a teen I got along great with my parents. Though I was a pretty good kid, I of course did things from time to time that annoyed or disappointed them, but I knew my mother loved and supported me, and the older I get the more I understand and appreciate them.

But the most important test they passed was that my closest friends thought my folks were cooler than their own parents and liked to come over to my house.

P.S. About your daughter’s remark, I can’t imagine that “all her friends hate their parents.”

zenvelo's avatar

I got along okay with my parents, I was not one to get in trouble or talk back. But I was the “lost” child in a family of four kids, the third. And by the time I was in high school my older sister and brother were gone away to college. And my younger brother was in elementary school.

So when I was in high school my parents were weary and as long as I wasn’t under arrest, they let me have free rein to stay out or go out “to the library” on a weeknight. And I was often gone.

My kids have a good relationship with me, but I am a little bit of an emotional grounding point for them because their mom is crazy and unpredictable. So they give me enough grief to remind me they are teenagers, but really no other worries.

Seek's avatar

I have nothing good to say about my mother, and little positive to say about my stepfather.

KNOWITALL's avatar

Loved my mom until I was 17 then I hated her. She was fun, let us drink (at home only and only wine coolers), gave us our first marijuana cigarette at age 14 because she wanted us to do it with her supervision, she was the funnest mom of all my friends parents. She even put a pool table in our living room so we could hang out.

One of the things my friends said about my mom (and still do) is that she is easy to talk to and doesn’t judge you or treat you like you’re a child or stupid. She also gives really good advice, and can talk anyone down from any negative emotion or situation.

laineybug's avatar

I have a pretty good relationship with my parents. I can talk to my mom about anything and to my dad about almost anything. Sometimes my dad is really hard to talk to though. And even though my mom always talks about being a bad mother because she sleeps for a lot of the day she’s actually a pretty good mom. I’ve never done anything very bad and I’ve never really felt the need to.

Shippy's avatar

I really didn’t, I was one of three children. (It is rumored there are four). Plus one from my dads mistress. I was a really good kid. But I was always trying to make up for the failings of my siblings. Particularly my brother, who I realize was also bipolar.(But clearly with more issues than that even). All in all I when I was put in foster care, I wish they had left me there. It was just a dark black hole of an experience.

sorry didnt realize that my own answer was going to be so depressing!

HolographicUniverse's avatar

This is common in the transitional years of child development, a combination of physiological and psychological changes is the basis for much conflict and disparity in the parent child relationship(some dub it the rebellion stage)..It’s very natural ( as natural as a woman’s hatred for her spouse during pregnancy)
Though some handle this transition better than others, on one end of the spectrum the change can be severely malicious while on the other end nothing major.

This “hatred” is a reaction to restriction but there may be a chance that modern media has intensified such a reaction to extremes we havent witnessed in past generations.

Personally I didnt have a strenuous relationship during teenage years because I was a “good boy”, too much respect to hate my mother. Though I took puberty and my appearance VERY hard so my teenage years were difficult for different reasons

burntbonez's avatar

I got along fine because I got good grades and never got into trouble. However, my parents did not know me and did not understand me. They had their own problems, I guess. Didn’t find out about those until after my father died, and never spoke to my mother about them before she died. I was a good kid. They had their own problems and I guess none of us knew the other.

We got along. The way polite people get along. We got along. No one knew anyone else. We got along. I guess they loved me, but I have to say that to this day, I’m not sure I could tell you what love is. Not from experience, anyway. But yes. We got along.

muppetish's avatar

When I was a teenager, I got along well enough with my parents but there was a lot of things that they did not know about me, or what I was going through at the time, they I decided to withhold from them (not like sneaking out at night or drinking, but more like crying most nights before bed or struggling with identity issues and whatnot.)

The majority of my friends, however, did have strained relationships with their parents and at least four of my closest friends came from divorced parents. Two friends had fathers were serving time. At least one friend wanted to run away from home.

It reached a point where I felt guilty for coming from a much less divided family unit.

YARNLADY's avatar

I always got good grades and never got in trouble as a teenager, so I got along with them just fine. They were very strict, but loving. I do remember one time when I sassed my mom and she slapped my face. I was very surprised.

They never did know how really sad I was because of the bullying at school, and that hurt a lot. Their advice was just ignore it, but I was deeply affected by it.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@burntbonez Sounds very much like some of my friends from ‘better’ families. They are still unsure as adults what love really is because they didn’t receive unconditional love as children, sad.

Bellatrix's avatar

I got on with my father very well. I did not get on with my stepmother at all. I ended up leaving home at 17 because of the poor relationship I had with her.

My relationship with my daughters was relatively blissful. We went through a phase where they challenged my boundaries but that’s a normal and expected part of their development. On the other hand my son pushed the boundaries way passed a reasonable level. Now they are all young adults I get on with each of them very well. Two have returned home for spells and then moved out again. The other knows the option is there. That they feel they can do this shows me how good our relationship is. My oldest daughter is planning to move back so she can save to buy a house. I’m fine with this. I respect her need for privacy and space and she respects that this is our home.

longgone's avatar

I was a very responsible but also extremely stubborn kid…however, if anything, I got better during puberty. I never acted out in any of the classical ways – i.e., drinking, smoking, drugs, etc. I think that’s due to my parents not expecting me too. I’ve noticed almost all parents dread the teenage years. Wonder whether a lot of teenagers are simply subject to self-fulfilling-prophecies?
I can’t say I got along great with my parents all the time, but I always felt they’d be there for me. As a child, I was afraid I’d just automatically turn into some horrible human being when I hit age fourteen. I can remember consciously deciding not to be one of “those” teenagers when I was about ten.
Like your daughter, I’d never have said I hated my parents. I’d advice her to trust her future children like, I presume, you’ve done. In a way, most kids are simply doing what is expected of them.

Sunny2's avatar

We got along because I behaved and did what my folks said. I managed to stay with a friend if a date I had was going to go beyond my curfew.
It wasn’t until I was bringing up my own kids that I recognized the parenting tasks my parents should have done and didn’t. I kind of resented them after that.

AshLeigh's avatar

I love my mom. She isn’t perfect, and she made a lot of mistakes at the beginning of the divorce, but she always takes care of me.
I think most teenagers exaggerate about how bad it is at home. I know that some people have it worse, but I’ve found the ones who don’t talk about it are the ones who have a rough home life.
I have nothing good to say about my father, except that when he tried he was a good father. Except he rarely tried.

Unbroken's avatar

My relationship with my parents by my teens had somewhat settled. Preteens were rough. Mutual hate and war. I won mostly btw, so as a result of that working buying a car and them splitting up I had very little to say or worry with them poking their nose where it didn’t belong, I pandered to them on occasion and we had a donnybrook or a cold front or two but nothing too major.

I have a much better relationship with my mother today.

Glad you have found a method that works for having a sucessful relationship with your children.

submariner's avatar

I was going to ask a similar question. Observing young women and older teens shopping with their mothers, I get the impression that they get along better these days than mothers and daughters did in the 70s and 80s. But that’s just an impression I get from observing strangers from a distance. My close friends’ daughters are all preteens, and they all seem to get along fine, for now. For some reason, my friends have far more daughters than sons, but so far the boys mostly seem ok too.

Berserker's avatar

I got along great with my dad. You know when they say your parents are your best friends? Well denno how true that is, but my dad and I got along damn fine. We talked about everything, he taught me a lot, he made me laugh, I made him laugh too. Anyways he kicked ass. Didn’t get along with my mom, but she was absent from most of my teens anyway, (and still is) and that’s a good thing haha.

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