...So who is this Jo Bainbridge chick?
Hi everyone, my name is Jo and I am the mother to three pretty awesome teenage boys; Eldest 20, Middle 18, and Youngest 16. Parenting has been a struggle, more so in the younger years. I kind of sucked (BIG TIME) at it for a while. But teenage stage: I am rocking that! I firmly believe is that teenagers are awesome! It has been my favourite stage of parenting by far. There is not much we have not experienced, so please allow me to share.
My anti-parenting advice...
I began writing about the 'fun times' involving my kids as a form of therapy about five years ago when my eldest was 13. Writing about what they were doing was my way of reflecting; a 'what just happened?' activity. I tried to take lessons from each experience and share those lessons with others by writing about it. I jokingly called it my anti-parenting column as more often than not it was based on what I did wrong rather than what I did right. It connected with people. Parents of teens started to release that sigh of 'thank goodness someone is saying how I feel!'.
The teen stage is the best ...
As I had my kids earlier than many of my friends, I began to notice how many of those friends were looking at their three-year-old and saying, "I dread the teen years". That made me sad as I was loving the teen years! My mandate now is to let people know that it isn't all doom and gloom and that the restrictive/authoritarian style of parenting many still use with teenagers only leads to a dysfunctional relationship and reinforces stereotypes for both teen and parent.
The secret is right there
Never one to shy away from challenging norms, I decided that it was time to question how and why we parent teenagers. Raising teenagers is a mighty challenge; one that can drive you to lose your shit more times than you care to, it can also have some pretty real terrifying moments, as well as those amazing 'pay-off' moments (where all your hard work in raising these humans finally shows through!) And like any situation, your input/reaction/behaviour/attitude/thought process etc can and does impact on each and every situation with your teen. Talking Teens explores ways in which you can maintain control...over the one thing you have the right to control - yourself. Raising teenagers is not about controlling them, it is about being the best role model you can be to show them, be an example, a role model.
To join me, Jo, as I explore all sorts of things related to raising teens!
Writer, speaker, parent coach, and realist; problem solver, lateral thinker and ever so slightly inappropriate, Jo will make you laugh, make you think but most of all encourage you to enjoy being a parent to teens.
Jo does not provide a professional advice or information on any topics. She does, however, surround herself with some pretty amazing fully trained professionals and ensures she is familiar with registered reputable organizations.