Have a Mouthy Teenager? Parents, Here's Why to Respond With Love by Heather Holter

Teens Parenting
6 years ago

Have a Mouthy Teenager? Parents, Here's Why to Respond With Love

I have a 13-year-old girl that is sweet, kind, loving, generous and responsible. She does everything she is supposed to and her behavior very good. The only problem is her mouth! I feel like it's her hobby to tell me I am wrong or stupid daily. I used to argue with her and scream at her when she did that, but that was not working. I started to try to see why she was doing it. Many reasons seemed to be the answer:

  • testing limits
  • seeking independence
  • the ever-dreaded hormone fluctuations

So here is what I do now, and with better results: I tell her she is not allowed to disrespect me, but may nicely tell me her thoughts on anything in a respectful way even if her view is different from mine. Then I always make sure to say that even when she talks rudely to me, I still love her no matter what more than anything! This approach seems to end the confrontation quickly.

Mouthy teens are hard to deal with, and I sometimes want to yell and argue with her, but it helps no one so I breathe, count and respond in a loving way. I want to build my girl up instead of breaking her down. LOVE is always the answer. 

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Elisa Schmitz
Oh, you said it, Heather Holter ! So very true. Love is always the answer.
Cynthia Miller
Dear Heather, I have a pre-teen and the mouthiness is starting to show up -- so I was glad to see this post. Absolutely, love opens up places for growth. Toady my daughter was really sassing off and I made myself back up and say listen, I know you are better than this, I know you want to be better than this, and I want to help you be better than this. But I can't help you if you're being rude to me. So let's let the anger pass, and let's get back to a good place; and we did,

You're so right, understanding that the reasons include pushing boundaries, looking for independence -- that helps because loosening restrictions, instead of keeping them static and watching The Mouth try to push through them -- better results there too.

Thank you again!
Heather Holter
It i s so hard when you have to start letting go and giving more freedom, which means also trusting them to make good choices! It is so scary out there!
Dawn Taylor
I always say “pick your battles” and I give my teens the same advice when they encounter bad behavior from their peers. Everyone has “moments” and sometimes just moving on from others bad reactions helps them regroup and get to a better place on their own.

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