If you're the parent of a teenager, you know that over-the-top feeling of Parenting Fatigue. You're exhausted from always working to keep tight boundaries, teaching important life lessons, and guarding against all those dangers you hope your teen never has to experience but are afraid they will. You feel the endless requirements of parenting, wonder if this year your teenager will settle into high school, stand up to the bullies, and graciously accept household chores without argument, or if this is just a fantasy you need to let go of. You're tired from constant financial worries, concerns over your teen's budding relationships, and wondering if your teenager's friends are building them up or taking them down the wrong pathway. Substance abuse, teen sex, eating disorders, bad attitudes, poor grades... there seems to be no end to things you can worry about and can feel completely powerless to protect your teenager from.
Is it any wonder that you're tired?
More from YourTango: 7 Tips To Raising A Great Dad
Every single parent experiences Parenting Fatigue at some point. However, the key is to recognize the signs and do something proactive to combat the effects. Only by being mindful of the dangers will you be able to prevent Parenting Fatigue from becoming depression, resentment, or worse.
Recognizing Parenting Fatigue
Here are some signs that you're suffering from Parenting Fatigue.
More from YourTango: Ten Ways to Help Your Teen Handle Your Divorce
- You can't remember the last time you truly enjoyed spending time with your teenager.
- You can't remember the last time you did something just for you without feeling guilty.
- You struggle to just make it through your days, grateful for any moment without conflict.
- You're having a tough time balancing all those "hats" you wear.
- You're struggling with anger, depression, or anxiety.
- You struggle with constant mental, physical, and spiritual exhaustion.
If you answered Yes to more than three of these six things, you're struggling with Parenting Fatigue. You're in very good company! Many parents - some say the majority of parents of teenagers - struggle with these six things and are experiencing Parenting Fatigue.
Once you've recognized the problem, what's next?