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Ask the Expert: How to Navigate the Tween Years

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Has your sweet child turned moody and defiant almost overnight?  Wondering what's going on - and more importantly, how to handle it?

We've got help!

Julie Ross, M.A., Executive Director of Parenting Horizons and author of How to Hug a Porcupine: Negotiating the Prickly Points of the Tween Years will be here all next week to answer YOUR questions about tween behavior, and how to cope!

Ask Julie your questions today and you could win a copy of her book!  2 moms will win.

Thank you for joining us, Julie!


The Official Rules
To enter the this contest, reply to this post. Click on the 'reply to post' button at the top (or bottom) of that post. When the text box opens, add your reply. Once you've added your reply, click on the "Add Reply' button.

  • Posts must be made between Thursday, January 5 at 1 pm EST and Sunday, January 15 at 11:59 pm EST.  
  • This contest will end on Sunday, January 15 at 11:59 pm EST. 
  • Two winners will be selected randomly.
  • The winners will be posted on this thread and will be notified via CafeMom PM.
  • Multiple replies are allowed and will increase  your chances of winning.
  • Prizes are only available to members who live in the US or Canada (excluding Quebec).
  • Two winners will receive a copy of "How to Hug a Porcupine"  
by on Jan. 5, 2012 at 1:01 PM
Replies (31-40):
by on Jan. 6, 2012 at 12:09 AM

What do you do with a 12 year old who thinks they know everything?

by on Jan. 6, 2012 at 12:10 AM

What do you do with a 12 year old girl who is wanting her own way all the time?

by on Jan. 6, 2012 at 1:06 AM

How do I get my 9 yr old to be more responsible?

by on Jan. 6, 2012 at 1:08 AM

Why is it that all of a sudden my 9 yr old does not want to follow directions and rules?

by on Jan. 6, 2012 at 1:09 AM

How do I get my 9 yr old to do the tasks I ask her to do more quickly?

by on Jan. 6, 2012 at 3:30 AM
When talk to my daughter about an issue that came up in school (e.g., the teacher had to talk to her about being distracted or she was rude to someone but she brought it up to me), I ask her what she feels she could have done differently. She becomes very defensive and upset, starts saying she doesn't want to talk about it, and if I push it, she verbally attacks me saying I'm trying to make her feel bad, and that I couldn't possibly understand because I'm such a perfect person. This has happened repeatedly. She's an only child and I don't know if she is feeling competitive with me, or if it just a diversion tactic. (BTW, I'm not perfect). :). How do you suggest I handle this?
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by on Jan. 6, 2012 at 6:15 AM

What is the best way to handle: one minute my tween is yelling at me and back talking and then the next minute hugging and kissing me?

by on Jan. 6, 2012 at 6:50 AM

Our situation, is probably more common today. I raised my oldest grand daughter till she was nine and a half years old. She is almost eleven now. She was very sweet, while living with us. She had to visit her other grandma, and her dad saw her about five or six times a year, while we had her living here. (Her mother, our daughter, didn't even bother to be involved most of the time). Now, this child is living with her mother, and her disposition has totally changed. She is now on medication, (That I feel she doesn't even need). I realize that around this age, the hormones kick in and the wonders of womanhood start. Well so far this child isn't developing yet, but by golly she has a more pronounced attitude.
The sad part is that she knows we love her very much, and her mother isn't letting us be involved even when it comes to the school activities that sometimes go on. The other children also lived with us, one we adopted and then there is a baby who is now eighteen months old. She was with us practically all the time during her first year, but went "Home". The second from the youngest, has a behavioural problem, that probably could have also been changed with discipline, she is going to be seven in February, and she spent her first six years here wtih us also. It's heartbreaking because I see this little one at school now and then, and I hug her, but she is always saying she loves and misses me. What can I do now? We're on a fixed income and unfortunately just went through a bankruptcy, so we're not really in a position to fight this in court, but as far as we are concerned these children should stil be with us, where were happier.
However, I admit I do enjoy the freedom and peace since they went to live with their mother. She just isn't the mother she should be though. I'd appreciate your input on this situation. We love all these children like they are our own. Thanks for listening.

by on Jan. 6, 2012 at 8:24 AM

My tween (11 year old boy) is suddenly defiant. Whatever I say or ask, whether it is about school or just if he did his chores is giving me a big mouth. Challenges me and I found that if I try to correct it everytime it get's worse. If I pick my battles I look, according to my husband, inconsistent.

He was always a bright open child, warm now he shows me that he is tough, tries to use foul language or starts name calling people/teachers. Calls me old, old fashioned. Basically being disrespectful or right on the brink of being disrespectful.

Please advice us how to navigate through this period without loosing that warm contact that we always had.

by on Jan. 6, 2012 at 8:41 AM

When your teen is standind there helling their head off at you, what is the best way to handle the situation? I know sometimes you really feel like just giving up, but that does not make the problem go away. What's your best advise?

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