This month my boy officially became a pre-teen. He celebrated his 12th birthday.
Clearly I’m not old enough to have a 12 year old. There is NO WAY I’ll be old enough, or responsible enough, to have a teenager next year.
But I have been blessed, for my pre-teen is pretty much problem free.
He has been a joy to parent, right from the moment he arrived bang on his due date and he looked upon the faces of his two utterly bewildered parents.
Dan is a sportsman and has a sportsman’s team spirit, enthusiasm and respect. He is and always has been very loyal to his friends. He has great wells of compassion. And he still hugs his mum a lot.
His dad and I are really rather proud of him.
We don’t tell him this enough.
But there are ‘cons’ to this relationship.
5 of them actually. So here you go 5 ways you know you have a pre-teen boy in the house. So, you know, you can prepare!
1. The cupboards are always bare
I feel like one of my primary functions in this house is food shopping. Every other day I stock up and every other day it’s like a plague of locusts have munched their way through the entire contents of our fridge. And we have a very big fridge.
He is always hungry.
Half an hour after eating a roast dinner the same size as mine, he’s asking for a snack. My overriding vision of him is the ghostlike glow of the fridge’s innards as he stands there, eyes darting around the shelves for something to satisfy his raging hunger.
I didn’t realise one human being could eat so much toast in one sitting.
2. There is a certain smell
It is the smell of boy. Slightly sweaty, a little earthy, not entirely unpleasant but if left to fester it makes your eyes water slightly.
Last Christmas Dan was gifted lots and lots of Lynx body spray and Fat Face smellies. For a year we’ve suffered a fog of man scent enough to bring on an asthma attack if you walk in his bedroom.
I’m not sure which smell is worse.
Everywhere. Over everything. School shoes, best shoes, back of the neck, knees, fingernails.
You will wail about HOW the heck he manages to get so much mud in such hard to reach places.
And then wail some more as said mud finds its way onto towels, the bathroom floor, light switches.
He will pop outside for a quite game of footy and bring half the pitch back with him into your once very clean house.
His favourite trainers that he spent ages choosing because they had to be just so, will never ever be clean but he will shrug like you’re being picky and unreasonable when you point it out.
You thought sorting the socks out after a wash was a nightmare before? His socks are pretty much the same size as his dad’s. And the same colour. You will get moaned at, accused of incompetence and suffer the eye roll constantly for mixing them up.
Get used to it. Or buy socks which are easy to identify.
5. Social media
Ooof. A new generation of pre-teens brings with it a whole new host of issues.
Between the Xbox and his iPad there is a real danger of never actually seeing your child’s face, let alone having a conversation with them.
I’ve gone down the ‘if you can’t beat them join them’ route, so we often sit and giggle at something he’s seen online – obviously he has no clue it’s my way of checking that he’s safe and not using that godawful text speak any where 🙂
I’m sure having a pre-teen girl in the house bring with a whole different set of challenges so we have that to come in a couple of years.
Are your experiences the same – or do you live in a whole other circle of hell?!