Over the weekend, I removed my Teenage Daughter as a ‘Friend’ on Facebook.
Why you may wonder?
In the interest of my Mental Health…let me try to explain…..
Of course some of you may also be wondering why on earth I would have her on my friends list in the first place. It can only end in tears…..
We live in the same house (she is only 15, sorry, ‘Nearly 16!!’). So why would I need to see her on FB. Well, I admit, possibly to keep up to date with her social life, her friends. Maybe to help me feel I’m still a part of her life, as she is growing up and away, (sob) which is as it should be… Or maybe I’m just plain nosey...?? Come on, be honest, who doesn’t want to know a little of what their Teenagers are really up to?? They can truly be the most secretive of creatures. Which we were also, so I do understand and respect this. I promise I do! I try really hard!
Also please, don’t get me wrong, we do have lots of conversations, and lots of them are engaging, funny and even make sense! But, sometimes, particularly at the moment, they seem to consist of a sort of abbreviated, shorthand language…
ME: ‘Have you d….’
TD: ‘I know……’
TD: ‘I said, I know’
ME: ‘I was just asking, as you said that last ti…’
TD: ‘Alright.. I KNOW!'
(All in one breathe, I might add)
TD: ‘I can’t believe (please feel free to insert any of the current, popular names of teenage girls in any of these xxx) said that about xxxx, that is just so mean, just because xxxx said so and so about xxxx, they can’t go round saying things like that abou….’
ME tentatively: ‘Maybe they should sort it out between themselves?’ (Seeing the writing on the wall)
TD: ‘But they’re my friends, and xxxx shouldn’t be saying that about xxxx’
ME: ‘Yes, I agree, but if you start telling xxxx what xxxx has said or taking sides you’ll just end u….’
TD: ‘Yes…alright…I KNOW…!’
…and these are the conversations that give me most cause for concern….as we all know, if acted upon (and they are, frequently as TDs ‘injustice’ button is fully pushed), how they end…..But will TD listen? Like hell she will!
I can already hear you thinking 'No surprise there then…’…but then we are looking at this through the eyes of our own maturity, wisdom and that wonderful thing hindsight…Hah! But we all recognise that interfering in others arguments will only cause you pain.
To hear, from her personally, of being out of favour with friends, because she believes she has acted in someone else’s best interests, is painful enough. To actually watch it unfold via FB is enough to make me cry.
….it breaks my heart.
My daughter, who is big hearted, brave, clever, kind, funny, extremely loyal, hates injustice with a passion, outspoken, I swear…she doesn’t edit anything in her head before it comes out, (which can have its hilarious moments) and can be stubborn...Always, and I mean ALWAYS seems to get the rough end of the deal in every one of these conflicts. And of course, that would be because of those same qualities which make her the individual she is, the person I love, and admire, and I sincerely hope she never loses them…. but perhaps just a little ‘Fine Tuning?!?
I don’t want her to hurt for any reason. As the person who carried her, loved and nurtured her, helped and watched her grow into the beautiful young adult she now is, my instinct is to protect. I still want to scoop her up and tell her everything will be fine (a bit difficult as she is already taller than me) the way I could when she was little, where I could kiss and soothe it all away. I know I can’t do it the same way anymore…..
She wants to deal with it, in fact insists, her way and on her own. And she’s right of course, I agree with her. How many Teenagers do you know, who will listen, let alone follow advice or suggestions from a Parent..I've not met one yet. But it’s so, so hard. All I can hope is that, over her 15 years, sorry again, ‘nearly 16!!’, I've given her some kind of direction, and trust that at some point she will learn and understand, when necessary to ‘Let people sort it out themselves and not interfere’ ….but I think it may be some time!
I find the sniping and bitchiness on FB, quite shocking. Is this the way they all talk to each other now? Admittedly, it is mainly, but not exclusively, in the ‘Teenage’ realm. My daughter included I might add, please, my love is blinkered, not blind! So a lesson learned, by me.....I think.
So, I’m not sure I want to watch it on FB anymore, it’s too painful and far too tempting to interfere.In fact I have done so a couple of times (but in private,on ‘chat’ not in public) to TD..erm....er..Uh-oh!
….Aha!!..(OMG! OMG! Please, just shoot me now..)
But of course, when I do it, it’s NOT interfering..*cough* *splutter*
Oh dear!…….What sort of Mother am I…