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10 Things you should chat with your teenage daughter about

10. Positive Self image. With images of teen models and stars these days it is amazing that girls are not all anorexic and emulating their “role models” bad behavior. I believe that beauty comes from within. Work on your daughters feeling of self worth before worrying about looking like an Abercrombie Model “who most likely isn’t wearing any clothes” or a Disney Princess whose gone bad.

9. The “s” word, try and keep an open mind and ear when you talk to your daughter about sex. I have always had a very open relationship with my daughter and told her I wanted her to be honest with me if she had any questions; I would rather her come to me no matter how embarrassing, rather than have her get information or misinformation from a friend. Remember if you don’t talk about it most definitely does not mean she isn’t thinking about it and putting your head in the sand is not the solution!

8. What things are important to her? Listen, encourage, and show up! Is she interested in school politics, sports, or saving the world? Whatever it is be interested, support her anyway you can even if it is just showing up for a game or an event! This will mean the world to her, she might not tell you but believe me she will feel it in her heart.

7. What is your daughter doing after school? Is she keeping up with her homework or coming home and spending 3 hours in front of the TV watching Sponge Bob Square Pants. You need to teach her responsibility so that when she gets her midyear grades you aren’t surprised with her failing exam scores. Sometimes you need to be proactive and “ask” again “I know said holding your breath” about her grades. How is she doing? Is anything difficult? Might she need some extra help, all asked in the most supportive way.

6. The boy factor- Is she one who “loves” boys? How do boys react to her? Does she chat with them on facebook? Get one! Know what she is doing !! If she is involved in after school activities, stop by a game or go to a show. Just promise her; you, or in our families case, my husband won’t embarrass her.

5. The girlfriends: Know them, all of them… Encourage your daughter to have her girlfriends come over so you can meet them and get to know them. There is always one in the bunch you will need to keep your “eye” on. Sit down and talk to them as a group to see “What’s new in school?” “Who is the latest heart throb?” “What things are going on at school” It is amazing what you can learn when you sit down and listen! Notice I didn’t say jump in the conversation or become part of a “fight” because there will be lots and lots of fighting and drama with girls, unfortunately it’s in the genes somehow but be there to understand the dynamics of the group and where your daughter fits in.

4. Eat Healthy: It really is monkey see monkey do… Not that I’m saying any of you are monkey’s. What I’m saying is when you are out with your kids; set an example of what you know is good nutrition for them, needless to say eating at McDonald’s 7 days a week is not! So if you work, pack a lunch or at least a snack of veggies and fruits, so your teen will follow suit, hopefully!

3. Set Rules and let them know there are consequences: Texting and driving, do I dare have to say drinking and driving, to me these are both the lesser of all evil! No No No! I don’t think I need to say more…

2. What is going on in her daily life? In this day and age where our teens spend hours and hours online or texting on the phone; know who your teen is chatting with. If you have any suspicions that she is being bullied step up, and for pete sake, step in and help her. Cyber bullying has gone way out of this world to the point where teens are taking their lives. Keep the lines of communication open be there to listen and support her but always be the “mother” or “father”!

1. Know and understand sometimes what she says is not actually what she means! As I call them “the three dreaded words”; I hate you! Is not what she means… She means I’m frustrated… I’m scared… I don’t know what to do… just listen to me and… help!

Now I don’t claim to be a psychologist or anyone with any kind of medical background, I’m just a mom who has been there through those “wonderful years” we call teens, and the good news is I’m Still Standing! And so will you!!

About shelley

Shelley Kramm is the founder and editor of I'm Still Standing and The DC Ladies. Learn more about her and her inspirational family here and connect with her on Twitter, Facebook, Linkedin, Google+ and on

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  1. Love this Shelley. Even though I am about 8 years from having a teen daughter,this list is a good reminder that the day will come fast. I think that even some of these things can be applied now.

  2. Great info! I love these. I posted below you on the SITS forum. Thanks again for hosting the 31dbbb! I'm already hooked. =) Your list is similar to mine: bold idea then some details.

  3. Wow, what a great list. My daughter is only 5, but I think that some of these are applicable at any age. Nice work!

  4. Good tips! I find that a lot of my friends who are my age can relate to parents who didn't really talk to us about anything deep or meaningful. They were good parents, but they didn't ask the right questions about "us" most of the time.

  5. I don't have a teenage daughter but I think these are excellent things to talk to ANY child about :)

    coming over from SITS

  6. This is such a great list, Shelley. I think you've covered a lot of really important and often overlooked conversations. :)

  7. Thanks for hosting this challenge. Those are important. I wished my parents had talked about all those things with me when I was a teenager.

  8. BabyDealsDujour says:

    I am saving this for 10 years! Great list and thanks for stopping by. :)


  9. Great list Shelley. I'll be there soon enough with my son. He turns 10 this weekend. lol

  10. Great advice, Shelley! I've actually spent years mentoring teen girls. They're all grown and in college now :) I actually find these toddler years with my daughter to be harder than dealing with teens…but we'll see how I feel about that in 10 years!

  11. Great list, Shelley! I'm sure many people will REALLY appreciate this info!

  12. Hi Shelley, great post! I don't have any kids of my own, but I taught high school for 12 years. Oftentimes, parent teacher nights were spent counseling parents about the dreaded "I hate you!" or telling them how important a facebook account could be.
    For some ridiculous reason all of my students would always want to be my facebook friend, but I had very strict rules about the entire thing: "That is, if you still want it, your graduation gift." Funny enough, most would take me up on it and when their crazy college nights would make their way to their public facebook accounts, I would always be sure to quickly comment, "I am guessing today is the day you regret asking your teacher to be your facebook friend. I am STILL watching you BE CAREFUL!!" :)

  13. That list is amazing. I am glad I won't need it for several more years for my daughter, but I think the same list applies to teenage boys, so I will be employing it before long.

    Amy W.

  14. Great topic, Shelley! As a recent teenager (I'm a young twenties girl now!) it definitely makes me happy to read that you're loving on your daughter(s) well! Oh and I love your idea of counting down…kinda mixes up the generic list post to make things interesting. =)

  15. Great advice, it's always better to have things out in the open, even if you're not happy about what's going on.

  16. Love the list. I have a teenage boy I can use most of this list on.My BFF has two teenage daughters and I think I have to print this out for her.

  17. This is really great advice! No kids for me yet, but looking back I would have liked to have had some of these conversations with my own parents when I was growing up.

  18. Hi Shelley! I'm catching up on comments from yesterday…getting sick! :-( Totally crashed when I got hom last night!

    Anyway, I love this post. My mom and I always had a great relationship. I knew she was "Mom," but she was also "friend," which I think is a perfect balance. She did so many of the things you eluded to here! Great post!

  19. Here from 31 DBB. Great List. I agree about knowing the friends. They play such a huge role and have a giant impact on kids.

  20. Hi from SITS 31DBB! This is such a good post, and I have one more to add…Be A Good Listener. Even when my Mom disagreed, because I knew she would truly listen I talked to her about everything. (Eventually)

  21. Love this! And I have boys…Similar things apply with a few tweaks here and there. I'm learning so much from all these posts on 31DBBB :-) And great job on hosting AND posting, phew!