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speech mom
09-10-2011, 08:15 AM
Anyone else have a preteen/teen girl emotional roller coaster to deal with on a daily basis?

Yesterday, she cried twice while doing her school work. She knew the answers, found the answers in her reading to double check, talked with me about the answers and then cried when it was time to write the answers down. Then she cried while doing multiple digit math, which she has been successful with for years.

I tried talking with her. Gave her the option of answering out loud rather than writing. Suggested she take a break and come back when she was ready. She just cried and pushed through. Even went on to do an extra chapter of math while sniffling.

I hadn't even planned on doing school yesterday. We were just going to wait until we had all our materials and start on Monday. She wanted to do her schoolwork.

I really wanted to tell her to go sit by herself and have some chocolate. I don't think this problem is in any way academic. I am pretty sure it is all hormonal.

Shoe
09-10-2011, 08:46 AM
Anyone else have a preteen/teen girl emotional roller coaster to deal with on a daily basis?

Yesterday, she cried twice while doing her school work. She knew the answers, found the answers in her reading to double check, talked with me about the answers and then cried when it was time to write the answers down. Then she cried while doing multiple digit math, which she has been successful with for years.

I tried talking with her. Gave her the option of answering out loud rather than writing. Suggested she take a break and come back when she was ready. She just cried and pushed through. Even went on to do an extra chapter of math while sniffling.

I hadn't even planned on doing school yesterday. We were just going to wait until we had all our materials and start on Monday. She wanted to do her schoolwork.

I really wanted to tell her to go sit by herself and have some chocolate. I don't think this problem is in any way academic. I am pretty sure it is all hormonal.

I can SO relate. My poor daughter has mood swings, outbreaks of tears, fits of anger, and periods where is the sweetest angel you could ever hope to meet. I'm pretty sure it is hormonal as well. It's led to arguments at times, strategic withdrawal on my part when indicated, and lots of hugs. I just keep saying "this too shall pass", and try to survive the storm in the meanwhile.

StartingOver
09-10-2011, 08:53 AM
Just breath !! My daughter was so emotional all the time. Homeschooling her was a roller coaster. We sat down and discussed that the work must be done at the end of the day, so that taking a break when needed was perfectly acceptable. It helped a bit. HUGS !!! My daughter was like that all the way through, she is just like her mom easy to tear up. She worked on stopping the water works by focusing on something else. For the longest time if she started to get frustrated she would head off and do some exercises. I am proud to state that she is better now, but she is 23. ;-)

Shoe
09-10-2011, 09:12 AM
Just breath !! My daughter was so emotional all the time. Homeschooling her was a roller coaster. We sat down and discussed that the work must be done at the end of the day, so that taking a break when needed was perfectly acceptable. It helped a bit. HUGS !!! My daughter was like that all the way through, she is just like her mom easy to tear up. She worked on stopping the water works by focusing on something else. For the longest time if she started to get frustrated she would head off and do some exercises. I am proud to state that she is better now, but she is 23. ;-)
Good advice as always Jana.

23! I don't think I can handle another 11 years of this!

Accidental Homeschooler
09-10-2011, 09:31 AM
Oh yes, this is where we are. Every feeling is so extreme/intense. I also think it is hormones. I think I remember sixteen as being the age when it all started leveling off for me, so if it is the same for dd I have 2 1/2 years to go. She also gets bored but doesn't seem to want to settle in and do anything, which is a big change for her. Dd has always been a busy person. It is like she doesn't know what to do with herself or all the emotional ups and downs. She is also so easily embarrassed (mostly by her loving family). I try to be understanding, but it does get a bit annoying at times. I guess it is just a matter (for me) of being supportive and not taking it personally.

Jilly
09-10-2011, 02:49 PM
My daughter has been weepy for the last year or so. It has been hardest on her twin brother, as he just doesn't know what to do when she starts crying. :)

I have noticed that when she is tired she is much more likely to cry. I now make her got to bed early and that has helped somewhat.

Crabby Lioness
09-10-2011, 04:28 PM
It's not just the weeping. It's the weeping and screaming AT THE SAME TIME! :eek:

CatInTheSun
09-10-2011, 05:11 PM
Does she understand WHY she feels that way?

My kids are younger, but I have migraines. I've had migraines since I was a little kid and in the last few years they've gotten chronic (meaning 15 days or more a month). Migraines don't just mean being in pain a lot, they mean having your neurochemistry all screwed up! You burn through your serotonin which makes you euphoric/giddy, then you crash -- irritable, fatigue, on edge. Kinda like someone is playing roulette with your mood.

Hormones (like preteens are exp for the first time) have a feedback loop affect on your neurochemistry, specifically serotonin. That's why women often feel moody cyclicly or during pregnancy. I'm so used to my serotonin being mucked with, I never feel moody from hormones (even dh says he knows he got off easy pgc wise, lol).

I talk to my kids a lot about this. Partly, so they know when to give mamma a break, and partly since I'm at least a 4th generation migraineur, so odds are good at least one of them will end up with migraines someday (but hopefully not). Part of that discussion is the idea that I can't control how I feel, but that doesn't give me permission to act on it (yell at them, for example). I am still responsible for my actions/words. Fortunately, I rarely snap at the kids even during a bad migraine run -- I've had my whole life to practice restraint. On the other hand, they understand that sometimes strobing light in my eyes or screaming is NOT nice. Acknowledging your feelings often calms them, too. When I feel like I'm about to lose it, I might say, "Right now, I feel frustrated that you did not do what I asked you to do and that you know you NEED to do." and then I feel better.

I repeat this discussion when one of the kids is angry or upset with me or a sibling -- their feelings are valid, but they are responsible for how they act on those feelings. We do a lot of talking thru feelings, and it is rewarding when you hear from the other room your 6yo telling her older sister, "It makes me feel so angry when you won't let me play the game the way I want to." And her 8yo sister say, "I don't want you to feel angry. How can we change the game so we can both have fun?" ...instead of screams, whacking each other, or calling me to show the other child why they are wrong. :roll eyes:

Anyway, I haven't dealt with the preteen angst yet, but perhaps it will help if she understands the neurochemistry (rather than an offhanded or patronizing (to her ears) "hormones" talk), you offer tools and techniques to help her regain composure (and understand we all feel that way sometimes), and a LOT of parental tolerance and patience.

It also helps to remember that they get the "joy" of the hormones many years before the frontal lobe (control, reason, and consequences) part of the brain comes online. THat's around 19-21yo. :_laugh: My kids are also getting that lecture (and why sometimes mom and dad's job is to watch out for consequences they can't see yet).

Good luck!

Stella M
09-10-2011, 06:13 PM
Take a deep breath. Actually, just keep taking deep breaths all day long!

Encourage your dd to eat well and get plenty of sleep. Back off on the less important stuff. Let her - suggest to her - that she engage in some self-nurturing activities. Treat her the way you'd like to be treated when you're feeling hormonal. Don't let yourself end up in opposition to her! Remind yourself you are on her side :)

If she hasn't started her cycle yet, it may ease some when she does. That was our experience, anyway.
If she has started her cycle and it's a continual problem for most of the month, I'd look at seeing a herbalist. There are some effective, non-medical ways of easing the hormonal ups and downs.

Oh boy, it's tough!! Hugs to you and to your dd :)

speech mom
09-10-2011, 06:50 PM
She is 12 and has had her cycle for two years. I was really hoping that it would level off soon. If it is another couple years, that means it will be just in time for her sister to start.

I can't get her to take anything herbal. She has been really into tea lately and I am thinking maybe I can find some kind of tea to help with this.

I will have to hit the neurochemical conversation again. She tends to glaze over whenever the conversation heads into anything female. She thought I was completely insane when I explained cramps.

Stella M
09-10-2011, 07:04 PM
I think I remember my own herbalist mixing up drops to put into juice or some such, if she'd maybe go for that ? It was Vitex agnus castus (sp ?)

Sounds like she is having trouble recognizing when she needs to give herself a break and acting on it instead of trying to push through. Idk how you go about helping her get better at that though...it's hard enough to do that as an adult, let alone as a 12yr old.

Is she on a good teen vitamin ? Avoiding caffeine and making sure her calcium/Vit D levels are good might be helpful.

CatInTheSun
09-10-2011, 07:20 PM
She is 12 and has had her cycle for two years. I was really hoping that it would level off soon. If it is another couple years, that means it will be just in time for her sister to start.

I can't get her to take anything herbal. She has been really into tea lately and I am thinking maybe I can find some kind of tea to help with this.

I will have to hit the neurochemical conversation again. She tends to glaze over whenever the conversation heads into anything female. She thought I was completely insane when I explained cramps.

I'd let your younger dd in on the discussion, if only as an observer. When I was 12yo I remember my mom giving my older sis the "company you keep" lecture. My sis rolled her eyes and said something about not being influenceable. My mom's words seemed reasonable and my sis naive, so I accepted their truth. I think that saved my mom a lot of grief with me later on. :_close: That's also part of why I talk so much about this stuff with my younger kids, so they can see and think about it dispassionately before it's too relevant.

I'm also laying some of the same groundwork with ideas about romantic love and boys. :eek:

Jilly
09-10-2011, 07:36 PM
Is she on a good teen vitamin ? Avoiding caffeine and making sure her calcium/Vit D levels are good might be helpful.

I notice a difference in my daughter when she remembers to take her multi-vitamin and her omegas (http://www.amazon.com/Barleans-Organic-Oils-Pomegranate-Blueberry/dp/B002VLZ8DU/ref=pd_sim_hpc_5). She just seems calmer and not so emotional and stressed.

Stella M
09-10-2011, 07:55 PM
Another thought - if her cycles are somewhat regular, could you help her keep a diary of her moods ? She may be able to see a pattern in terms of feeling more weepy after day 16 or whatever. If there is a pattern, this could be a tool to help her think about how to cope over the month. If she knows day 22 she consistently falls apart, for example, she can forward plan to do the bulk of her work before that, or make sure she gets early nights that week or whatever helps her cope with her feelings.

Gosh, it's hard. I really feel for her. As a girl, you go from feeling pretty much the same every day of the year to suddenly having to deal with ongoing physical and emotional cycles. It takes a while to work out how best to handle that, or even just get used to it.

speech mom
09-10-2011, 08:09 PM
She is on a pretty regular cycle, but is pretty pissed off because her cycle is 21 days, which is normal, but sucks.

I really like the diary idea. Her dermatologist always asks her where she is in her cycle and she gets upset because she doesn't think it matters. It really does impact her skin and hair.

She is a dancer. She takes 11 classes now, I think. She is very conscious of what she eats and how much rest she gets. She won't take a multivitamin because she says she gets everything she needs from her food since she is very good about eating a variety of healthy things everyday. Her pediatrician backed her up on this. She doesn't do caffeine. I think I will suggest a trial run of her vitamins and see how it goes.

My 8 year old has been friends with older kids for years. Yea home schooling! I have observed some hysterical discussions between her and older kids about boys and cycles. Her nodding solemnly and saying, "I know, that is rough". etc.

I hate to say this, but I have a whole new respect for my mom right now. This is hard.

Stella M
09-10-2011, 08:14 PM
Oh yes, suddenly you realise why they seemed so harried when you were between 12-18! Watch for dancers' perfectionism that tries to push through on everything, rather than take a break when needed. 21 days is tough on her. Are her iron levels good ? There are non-meat food she can add to her diet as a snack if need be.

No idea what this is like but the website looked interesting http://www.celebratingthecycle.com/

Accidental Homeschooler
09-11-2011, 12:01 AM
She is on a pretty regular cycle, but is pretty pissed off because her cycle is 21 days, which is normal, but sucks.

I had a 21 day cycle and sucks is a good way to describe it. I basically spent over half my life either with pms or my period (for me extreme cramps and bloating). I couldn't deal with it as an adult, so a twelve year old, yikes! I ended up going on a low dose progesterone bc pill (sometimes called mini pill I believe?). Anyway, it did get me back to a 28 day cycle and no more pms. Good luck finding something that works for your dd.

Pefa
09-12-2011, 06:58 AM
I think that all a parent can do for their 13yo to 20yo children is help them avoid disease cells and preserve brain cells.

You've gotten a lot of good advice. It does get better.

christineoc
09-12-2011, 04:29 PM
Really glad to read this thread. Lots of good reminders and I don't feel so alone! My daughter is 10 and incredibly volatile lately. I know a lot of it's hormonal, and some of it's sleep, but I recently learned what a big role food was playing. A nutritionist determined that she is sensitive to gluten. We've removed it from her diet completely, and I'm beginning to see less of the real rollercoaster stuff.

dbmamaz
09-13-2011, 09:05 PM
My daughter wasnt a cryer (tho she was hateful towards me for years) .. . except when I was teaching her to drive. In my stick-shift. OMG the tears!!!

one thing I was thinking tho . . you said she wants to push forwards with sniffles .. . but thats fine, right? I mean, sometimes crying is just . . crying. It doesnt always mean you have to do something else. If she's ok continuing to work while crying, thats fine. You dont have to fix the tears if they arent bothering her? i'm not sure if that makes sense

i also had to do some work w my daughter to help her remember that the moodiness and fatigue were usualy cycle related. Still occasionally when she's complaining bitterly about something, i'll think for a minute, and say . . . 'when is your period due?' and she'll drop her jaw and her face lights up and she thanks me!

lakshmi
09-14-2011, 02:34 AM
you mean it gets worse?

I can't imagine anything worse than a 5 year old on steroids calling me a dumbass. Over and over again. I'd welcome a little sniffle...lol. Seriously though nutrition aside, omegas could help a lot. I'd also check out Bach Flower Remedies. A couple of great kid books. They seem super odd, but they do help.

http://www.bachflower.com/ a couple of good books for dealing with kids too. here's one. http://www.amazon.com/Growing-Bach-Flower-Remedies-Adolescence/dp/0852072732

dbmamaz
09-14-2011, 09:51 AM
Steroids are no laughing business. But my daughter was a total sweetheart until one day she walked in to my room and was incredbly rude. She was 11. I was so shocked i just let it slide, but it kept getting worse. I kept thinking she would get over it and go back to being my sweet, helpful girl, but i kept pulling away (because she was SO mean!) and it turns out, she felt abandoned (because of my remarriage . . . ) so when I pulled away she got angrier and meaner. For 6 years, until she was finally able to tell me what she was so mad about. Yeah, 6 years of hell in my house. Cuz dont forget in the middle of that my older son got dx'd and then my husband left me and then the son ended up on heavy meds and . . . well, its ok now cuz the husband is back and we are stable and happy, the daughter moved out and moved back and we are getting along quite well now, and the middle is stable on meds (well, emotionally stable, weight is another issue) and the younger one, well, he's finally sleeping through the night . . . yeah, at 8, he has stopped coming to our bed in the middle of the night.

so it gets better . . . but by then, you've lost your youthful enthusiasm. Sigh.

Accidental Homeschooler
09-14-2011, 10:09 AM
Thanks for telling that story Cara. My 13yo is incredibly critical and impatient sometimes with me and it would be very easy to pull back. I'm a person too afterall and we all have out limits. I also think a lot of families would not be able to come out on the other side of all the challenges that got dropped on yours and that you did is pretty amazing. I am sorry it was at the cost of your youthful enthusiasm. But who keeps that forever? Mine is definitely fading. I am hoping that wisdom/experience will be somewhat of a compensation.

Stella M
09-14-2011, 05:00 PM
I have to remind myself daily - hourly! - not to pull back. It has to be a conscious thing because often, I'm not feeling the love. It's all smothered in irritation. Sad but true :( Yep, it's hard.

dbmamaz
09-14-2011, 06:02 PM
Thanks accident!

lakshmi
09-14-2011, 10:40 PM
Not feeling the love because it is All smothered in irritation. I like this line for a poem.... not about teenagers though.

But how do teens or younger react when parents start fessing up. "Like, oh I am feeling shitty about what you said, and I want to pout in my room. So leave me alone.. "

dbmamaz
09-14-2011, 11:02 PM
Lakshmi, i dont understand you at all, i cant tell if you are serious or not. When I couldnt handle my teen's attitude, i would just say, Ok, whatever, I'm done. and walk out. She was always furious at me for walking out, but even her lousy therapist (as well as the good one) said I was doing the right thing. You have to be respectful tho. If you are cussing at them, you damn well better be ready to take from them.

lakshmi
09-14-2011, 11:11 PM
i am serious!! lol, I imagine that this is a problem that you might share with others i've known in my life.

speech mom
09-15-2011, 09:52 AM
I have noticed a problem with the cyclical crying issue. It is over for this cycle and so if it wasn't for this thread, I probably wouldn't think about it again for a few weeks.

lakshmi
09-15-2011, 05:34 PM
Like Sadie discussed herbal meds. Even though women have been taught that PMS teary behavior is normal. It actually isn't, and could indicate an imbalance in body constitution, you could take her to an herbalist to help with they cycle blues. A couple of supplements could maybe help ease the transition. And sorry for making you think about it again via this thread....

speech mom
09-16-2011, 09:23 AM
Where do you find an herbalist?

Suicidesal5
09-16-2011, 10:05 AM
I'm with you! My daughter is 10 and she has become very emotional. I can't figure it out at all but I keep going. So yes I can totally relate!

lakshmi
09-16-2011, 12:37 PM
Hello Suicidesal5.... didn't see your intro, but I do want to see a closeup of that photo you have as avatar...


Amy:

http://www.nccaom.org/find-an-acupuncture-practitioner-directory

check out this link first. chinese medicine herbals are the most regulated but there can sometimes be lots of lay western herbalists around. Chinese practitioners also do western herbs...