'twixt 12 and 20

<p>Stipulating that the concept of "teenager" is an American construct born mostly in the post-WW II years and since seeped into much of the Western world, it's interesting to contemplate. To wit, D has recently turned 20 and I can now say with a straight face that she's a 20-something...does that make <em>me</em> feel old...but it's also been a cause to reflect on all the changes in the past seven years, seven years being the time of banishment in the Icelandic sagas but I digress.</p>

<p>The maturing, the developing of new interests, the "becoming more like herself" is like watching a movie shot with time-lapse photography. </p>

<p>It's interesting to note which attitudes have changed and which have deepened. </p>

<p>And career options, while still broad, are already narrowing in her mind.</p>

<p>I know I've remarked before on the threads about "Going Away" that going off to college isn't the end of the book, only the beginning of a new chapter. Well, with perspective accumulated by moving more deeply into the new chapter myself...I just thought I'd say it again.</p>

<p>What's interesting is how they seem to need and want their parents a LOT more when they hit 20, vs. the seven years prior. Mostly career guidance and input, discussion on evens and political views, adult themes, etc. Seem to build far stronger, more profitable personal, business and academic relationships too.</p>

My oldest daughter also turned twenty a few weeks ago and it seems so odd that she is officially not a teenager anymore! But she truly is a young woman now and off on her own in lots of ways. I know your D is embarking on adventures in a similar fashion and it is a transition for us as parents to see them go beyond merely going off to college, which seemed big when it happened, but they are doing even more things independently now. I feel my D has been all over the place far and wide, in both hemispheres, in the past couple of years, and all on her own. </p>

<p>I haven't had to say out loud to anyone that my "kid" is in her 20's much yet and so it will be very weird not saying "____teen" which we have for so long or "I have two teenagers!" Nuh uh!</p>

<p>"I'm 15 for a moment
Caught in between 10 and 20
And I'm just dreaming
Counting the ways to where you are ................." etc etc </p>


<p>As usual Shakespeare nailed it:
"I would there were no age between ten and three-and-twenty, or that youth would sleep out the rest; for there is nothing in the between but getting wenches with child, wronging the ancientry, stealing, fighting." The Winters Tale</p>

<p>My oldest daughter will turn 20 in a few weeks... She's so physically tiny for her age that it is especially hard to realize that she's no longer going to be a teen. On the other hand, she has developed mental and emotional maturity that many older adults do not have. College has definitely been the most positive experience in helping her to further develop her natural talents, her thirst for knowledge, and her overall independence.</p>

<p>MomRath, what a great quote. I've not read/scene "A Winter's Tale." One of my empty nest goals is to see every Shakespeare play performed.</p>

<p>Great quote momrath. </p>

<p>DH was arguing with me the other day. He said older son, 20, is still his "boy", as in "I have two boys who are 17 and 20." I say his boy is now his "son". ;)</p>

<p>Did I write "scene" for "seen"? I plead that I was still waking up, or at least my mind was.</p>

<p>So, now that the teens are behind you, which year(s) did you find the most challenging?</p>

<p>I will have a 15-year old soon, and so far I think 12 was one of the toughest.</p>

<p>7th/8th grade for my D. And many girls, or so it seems.</p>

<p>Yes, at our school---perhaps borrowing from Shakespeare--the female head of school often says that we would be so much better off if our girls could just skip from age 11 right up to age 15.</p>

<p>Sounds like a pretty lousy school to me. That's a pitiful belief, and I would suggest she take a course in basic anthropology.</p>

<p>Oh Mini, as usual, you sound just as catty as girls of that age. But they grow out of it.</p>

<p>My oldest will be 20 in Feb. He's a great kid but I keep hoping each passing b-day will tame down a little bit more of the recklessness in him that emerged at about age 16.</p>

<p>Driver, your post #14 made me laugh out loud.</p>