These are the days when she simply takes out her annoyance on anyone in her path — a particularly unpleasant, and common, form of using you your other children, or the family dog as an emotional dumping ground. For example, one straightforward study used functional magnetic resonance imaging to watch teenage brains respond, in real time, to emotional input. After all, they have a few more friends to visit. If we could hold up a microphone to your daughter's unconscious mind, it would say, "You know, I've had a long day of being upset about this poor grade I just got back — the whole thing has become exhausting. No magic wand can make her peers, teachers, coaches, locker location, or homework any less irritating.
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It's not just hormones
More important, she'll start to learn that sometimes, just by listening, you are providing all the help she needs. Your willingness to hold your daughter's emotional hot potatoes from time to time is a thankless and charitable act, but it will help her get through some of the roughest patches of her adolescence. Keep track of everything you watch; tell your friends. I don't have a solution to the problem, but I need a break from being upset. Follow us on Twitter globeandmail Opens in a new window. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters globeandmail.