"What does your daughter think of all this?"
Well, she isn't crazy about it, but she knows that I recognize some subjects are off limits. Way off limits. My goal isn't now and never has been to humiliate her. Or even to pay her back for making my life so ... um ... dramatic.
I'd also welcome her involvement. In fact, for the past two years, I've asked my daughter to write a post or two (or ten), but she has never chosen to. Maybe she will one day.
In the meantime, it's only fair to make this a two-way conversation. So, I'm going to let some other teenagers do the talking. Here's what real teens wish they could say to their parents ...
"Knocking while you open the door to my bedroom kinda defeats the purpose of knocking."
"No offense, but your definition of abnormal is our definition of normal."
"Sometimes I really need to chill. Doing nothing doesn't mean I'm not doing something."
"Of course I know you were a teenager once. But, times have changed."
"Act your age. Not mine."
" 'Have I finished my homework yet?' If you already know the answer, don't ask me the question."
"You don't get it. My online life is my real life."
"I'm not you. Let me be me."
"I wish you understood that I’m a teenager now and not a little baby. I still want you to love me, I just don’t want to be smothered."
"You have no clue."
"The reason I didn't ask is that I knew you'd say 'No' "
"I don't tell you when I get a bad grade because I don’t want to listen to you tell me how I’ve let you down. Y'know, one bad grade is just one bad grade."
"One day, you say 'You're 17, act like a grownup.' The next, you say, 'You can't do that, you're only 17.' Which is it? Make up your mind!"
"I wish you wouldn't talk about me to my friends' moms."
"Maybe I would listen to you if you'd just shut up."
If you're like me, you may recognize a little of yourself in some of these.
Or all of them.