HICKS: Sullen tween daughter need not be the norm

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Reward maturity and respect. Thank her for being different from the “norm” and demonstrating courtesy.

Whatever you do, don’t make jokes or roll your eyes with other parents about the rough and tough teenage years. That’s the permission slip to drop the bar and deliver the typical, tyrannical teenage tirade (say that three times fast). Instead, when parents make cracks about how miserable their teens are, smile sweetly and say, “Not at our house we’re having a blast!”

Getting through adolescence can be a struggle. But if you expect the best from your tweens and teens, you’ll usually get it.

• Have a question about parenting in today’s culture? Email marybeth@marybethhicks.com.

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