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It’s tough to be a teenager. Like, really tough. But you know what else is really tough? Being the mother of a teenager.
Being a mother is one of the most difficult but most important jobs in the world. Your children can bring you the greatest blessings and most rewarding challenges. One challenge not to be underestimated is getting through the teenage years, especially in today’s world.
You remember what it was like to be a teenage girl… too young for this, too old for that, intense emotions you don’t understand, figuring out how to navigate high school, trying to get your parents to understand you and being convinced they never will. Some things never change, and yet in today’s digital social world, it seems like everything has changed.
Now young girls are being targeted by companies selling not-so-age-appropriate clothing, being influenced by twenty-something social media stars, and are constantly connected to their friends around the clock through social media that you have little to no control over. It’s tough to navigate as a teenager, and it’s tough helping your teenager navigate.
This is why it is never too early to start teaching our daughters good moral values by encouraging them to find their worth, and confidence in their relationship with Christ. No, this won’t prevent those rebellious teenage years, but by encouraging them to present themselves in a way that others see Christ in them first will help them find purpose in their actions.
It is up to us as mothers to teach our daughters what to do (Song of Solomon 8:2), and this starts by setting an example you would be proud for them to follow. Talk about modest clothing choices - why you make them and how you glorify and focus on God without showing off your body. Talk about the decisions you see influencers make and why they may not be the best example for her to look to. Talk about and show her how to turn to God for help through hardship and making every decision she will face. Even though they won’t admit it for many years, daughters look to their mothers to set an example and be a role model.
None of this means bad decisions won’t be made, arguments over clothing and make-up won’t happen, and no tears will be shed over boys and fights with best friends. Stumbling and mistakes are a necessary rite of passage into adulthood that all teenagers must go through. Our best advice to all mothers is to start talking to your children as early and as often as possible, to teach them to follow Christ and empower them to make their own good choices.