I would say that, for the most part, I had a pretty good adolescence and teenager-hood. I mean, sure, there were some severely shitty parts. I was goofy and awkward and was worried that my boobs would never grow and no boys would ever ever like me ever. I worried that, because I was utterly mystified by algebraic concepts, that I might actually be stupid and that once this fact about me was discovered, I would utterly fail at life. I fought with my parents and occasionally thought they were total idiots. I snuck around and did stuff I wasn't supposed to. I drank too many wine coolers and barfed everywhere...way more than once. I smoked pot when it was around and I took Ecstacy a handful of times. I had crushes on "good guys" who were often times just as bad or worse than the "bad guys" I also had crushes on. I was bored out of my mind in my small town, but I managed to make the best of it with hilarious friends and lots of school and parties and hairspray.
But there is not enough money in the universe that would convince me to get in a time machine and do it all over again. Being a teenager sucks balls. Your body is all out of whack, your brain is equally screwy, and your emotions? Whoa. Total psychoville. You have no idea who you are and, if you start to feel self-assured for one single minute, something or someone smacks you down (or at least you think they smack you down...but who knows because you're nuts). You spend an inordinate amount of time wanting to crawl into a hole and disappear. I guarantee you that even the most beautiful/handsome, popular, and seemingly awesome kid at your high school secretly hated themselves and longed for their own hidey-hole sometimes.
So watching my young stepson--barely 12 years old--just beginning to struggle with all the bullshit that is adolescence breaks my heart. There's nothing I can say that will convince him that I, or any other adult for that matter, understands one iota what he's going through. Every teenager is sure that they're the only person on the planet who has ever felt the way they're feeling; to them, their angst and misery are completely unique and unprecedented. If they lack the coping skills or parental structure necessary to make it through the roughest of the rough patches, they shut down and withdraw. They can't, or simply won't, talk about it--whatever that "it" might be, which leaves those that love them totally ill-equipped to help or support them. You all enter a whirlpool of frustration and start to go down the drain together.
But BH is an amazing father, and if there's anyone who I'd want in this kid's corner right now, it's him. We're going to get through this as a family, and with any luck, F will come to know just how loved and supported he really is.
Also, I'm guessing we're that going to learn a lot, which will hopefully prepare us for The Geej's teenage years because I'm pretty sure they're going to be a freakin' doozie.