Puberty Is Tiring…Very Tiring

My sweet little angel, Savannah, now often times switches from lovely to irksome.  She really has no idea that she is turning into that mouthy, bratty kid! 

You know, it’s kind of funny when I step back for a minute and realize that she cannot control what is happening to her.  We even get into arguments about why she is so sad and breaks into tears at times.  Yet, when I tell her that it is probably puberty setting in, she vehemently denies it so I ask, “What other explanation is there?”  

By that time Savannah is too sullen to talk about her problem and I do believe there was a time when I couldn’t bear seeing her so unhappy so asked her if she wanted to go live with her mom for a while?  I explained to her that I didn’t understand the problem and that it may be better to be with her mom.  Then she really began crying and yelled, “No” in between sobs.  

Her moods change so quickly and dramatically. A few minutes later and she was laughing and all smiles.

I began noticing changes with my nine-year old daughter when she turned eight.  I had a feeling that she had begun puberty but I also felt that she was too young, so maybe I was wrong? I didn’t remember this period of my older girl’s lives; probably because I wasn’t around for most of that time…I had been in a near-fatal car accident and the wife would not allow me home. I passed the painful hours away in hospitals and nursing homes.

Now since I could not decipher Savannah’s (I am a single Dad raising this daughter) ways, I took her to see her doctor.  Well, it turned out that I was correct. 

Though I had time (two years the doc said) before the bloody periods would begin; we left her office and immediately drove across the main thoroughfare to the drug store and purchased a box of feminine napkins. 

I put them away when she was eight and she will be ten in less than a month. I guess it’s not surprising that I forgot where I put them, but ahh, they’ll pop-up, like now!  Excuse me while I go upstairs to check out the linen closet…Ta-daa that was where they were.  I don’t want her to suffer any embarrassment at school so maybe I will put a pad in her backpack.

I just returned from picking the, good little girl, up at school and as is becoming the norm she asked to go over to her friend’s to do something.  Well it was hard to turn her down because she had talked of this friend non-stop since getting into the car.  The two of them are like sisters and not only in appearance, but in likes and dislike, allergies (both are allergic to cats) and both have seemingly endless amounts of energy.

But I worry.  Savannah says I worry too much, and the reason she is at that age already where her diary is private stuff – hands off Dad!  Driving down the road after our frozen yogurt treat but before dropping Savannah at her friend’s I noticed what I thought looked like long division in a book she was writing in so I asked her, “Is that long division,” being very proud because she struggled with that a bit.

She has bad hearing and asked, “What?”  I repeated the question and she slammed the book shut, got defensive and shouted, “It’s my diary Dad!”  Oh the cute innocence of her youth has gone.

I still recall Savannah and her first diary; she asked me to read it but I told her, “You aren’t supposed to show your diary to anybody because the words in it are your private thoughts.”

“I still want you to read it Dad.”  Okay like I said, the innocence of youth.

When first I discovered that she was in puberty, I panicked.  I told her girlfriend’s mom while sitting in the living room waiting for her daughter to get her things from the sleepover.  I also told her that I had bought four books through, “Discovery Girls” on the subject and showed them to her to get her reaction and to get her approval, I guess, as she is the mother of five girls.

“Oh puberty” she said.   She is somewhat of a know it all, “It’s no big deal.  Four of my girl’s have been through it so far and…my husband doesn’t agree with me on this, but I told the last one that went through it, be sure to always have contraceptives.  I was only being practical.  They’re going to do it so I would rather have my daughter ready.  Ryan thinks we should tell her to wait until she marries , but they’re gonna’ do it anyway. You can’t stop them.”

Well, love and emotion will win out, however if proper ideals are set the kids will think twice about it and prayerfully come to the right conclusion.  I don’t want Savannah, nor do I think any kid should think it’s okay to have intercourse before marriage.  Just because everyone is doing it is not a good enough reason for me.  I side with Ryan on this one, for I too think that a person should wait until marriage, but then, I am old fashion or so I’ve been told.  You must remember I am nearly 60 years old but because Savannah’s mother wasn’t fit for raising a child on her own, I gladly took on the responsibility.  And that responsibility has turned into a blessing!

I was showing Savannah some info about puberty on-line last evening and that was going fine (she would finish my sentences before me) but then we came to a part about crushes

“Can I go to that link Dad?”  Well of course, I said, “And could you let me read it in private?” 

“Sure thing, Savannah.” 

The following is a part of that article because I am sure there are other Moms and Dads who could also use the help…

 If I Have a Crush, What Do I Do?

When you develop special feelings toward someone, it can change your world. You might want to talk on the phone or ask your crush to your birthday party or a school dance. As you get older and your feelings change, you might be ready for your first boyfriend or girlfriend and even your first kiss! But for now, you might just be friends with your crush, if your crush wants to be friends with you.

You might or might not want to tell other people who your crush is. It can be fun to talk with friends about it, but sometimes kids tease other kids about crushes. Getting teased is never fun, so if you know about other kids’ crushes, don’t give them a hard time!

Some people call first loves or first crushes “puppy love” because these feelings are new to you, you’re young, and you don’t have much experience with life. You’re the puppy! Get it? Think about how a puppy is so excited and happy with everything new in its life — from a rubber bone to an old shoe. But when your feelings seem real and strong, it may not seem like puppy love to you.

If you need someone to talk with about a crush, a parent can be a good choice. Remember, they were kids once, too, and they know what it’s like. Can you imagine who your mom or dad’s first crush was? Maybe they’ll tell you about it!

What Do I Do When Someone Breaks My Heart?

When you have a crush on someone and you find out that he or she likes you, too, it’s a wonderful feeling. But sometimes it doesn’t work out that way. It’s hard to find out that the person you like doesn’t feel the same way about you. You might feel sad, disappointed, and rejected. That sad feeling is called heartbreak, even though your heart isn’t really breaking into pieces. If you feel heartbreak, those feelings can last for a while, but they will fade.

Another word about heartbreak: Try to be kind if you’re on the other end of a crush — when someone likes you. It’s a compliment when someone thinks you’re special. If you don’t feel the same way, try to tell him or her in a nice way.

Crushes are new and exciting, so enjoy them while they last. Someday, you’ll be telling your own kids about your first crush!




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Reviewed by: D’Arcy Lyness, PhD
Date reviewed: July 2010

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