To my future teenage daughter, i do understand.

From the day I found out I was having you, I made so many promises to myself. To let you make your own decisions on as much as I could. To remember not to yell at you the first time you slip and say a cuss word. To never force you into an activity you didn’t love. To never tell you it’s silly to cry over that boy in the 7th grade because you’re too young. Tons of promises that I hope I can keep. Times will get stressful and I know I’ll lose my cool, it’s inevitable. But I wanted to take a moment to put the words somewhere so not only I can remember, but you can as well.

As your mother I will always be your biggest fan. I will always want what’s best for you, above all else your happiness is what’s most important to me. Although you may sometimes doubt that when I don’t let you go to that movie with your friends alone, or that party everyone is going to. Sometimes we will fight because I see you making a mistake I made and I know how the situation will turn out. You won’t believe me, though, you’ll think your situation is different.

“How will I learn for myself?” Or something along those lines will come out of your mouth, just as they did mine, to my mother. And sometimes I will have to take a step back and remember that I have to let you make your own mistakes. So, even though every fiber of my being wants to protect you from the pain or disappointment, I will let you learn some things the hard way. I’ll also be right there, when you’re ready, to mend you back together. And I will not tell you, “I told you so.”

You’re going to go through many phases, darling. And you’re going to think I don’t understand a single one, but I promise that I do.

Those girls in middle school that make you feel inferior are jealous of you. They are just scared little girls looking to make somebody else feel miserable. You aren’t fat, you aren’t ugly. You are beautiful and incredible. You just always keep your kind heart.

That boy, the one all the girls like, wont be all that he’s cracked up to be in 5 years. He may flirt with you, but darling, don’t be fooled. Boys like him are trouble. And even though you’ll think the trouble makers are the cutest, once he hits high school he’ll already have been arrested at least twice. He’s no good and you’re too sweet.

The boy who likes you, but tries to get you to sleep with him to prove it is a liar. (He may actually be the previously mentioned, hot, bad boy.) No boy worthy of your attention will pressure you into anything. You say no because the longer you wait, the easier it’ll be to understand emotionally. Stay innocent, sweetheart, until you’re sure you’re ready. (i promise it’s not at 15 like I thought.) And when that boy calls you a “slut” for not sleeping with him, ignore it. Your real friends will know better.

Now, about this next guy. Your first heartbrake. Oh, darling, you’ll think the world has ended. That you’ll never move on and that you’ll never find it again. I will never try to tell you “you’re too young to love someone.” it’s very discouraging to hear that someone thinks you don’t know your own feelings. Granted it maybe “puppy love,” I’ll let you define love for yourself. At the time, if your anything like me you’ll be stubborn. You won’t believe that he wasn’t good enough. You won’t think about the fact that you’re young and have so many other people to meet. And I’ll let you cry, because that’ll be how you grow. I won’t tell you it’s dumb, or you’re too young. Those words don’t help. Your little teenage heart is broken for the first time and it’s not stupid. But I do promise you’ll recover. You’ll piece your heart back together and meet many more guys. They’ll all teach you lessons.

The only thing I won’t tolerate on your journey of finding out what love is, is an abusive guy. Emotional or physical. You are a prize to be won. I went down this road, and that my dear girl, is no form of love.

Just like guys, not every friend you make stays. Girl’s will be a bigger issue than guys sometimes. Girl’s get nasty and vicious. You’ll have some friends you think will stick around forever, but don’t. And you’ll surprise yourself when you accept a different type of person than your normal group (yes, you’ll have one) and they turn out to be the best friend. I can’t fully prepare you for middle and highscool girls. Just know that I know what it’s like to be bullied, and be the bully. I hope you pick a better side. Be the hero.

Please don’t be afraid to call me at 2 AM to come pick you up from a party. Don’t get in a car with someone  who’s been drinking! Don’t accept a ride from a guy you aren’t sure about. I don’t care if you lied and said you were at a friends. No lie will matter to me when your safety is at stake. I’ll come get you and we will talk in the morning. Not yell, but talk. Because I’ll just be happy you’re home safe.

 I could go on and on about things you’ll face. But I won’t. I will let you learn, my love, because you’re my daughter – you’ll be as hard headed as they come. I just want you to understand that I understand. I won’t judge you. I won’t scold you. I will always listen. I will always help. Don’t be afraid to share your life with me, because chances are, I’ve done it too. So that means I can help you through it.

Always remember, even when we fuss, I love you. You are my biggest achievement and blessing. Sometimes you’ll say you hate me, and that’s okay. I know it’s anger and frustration. I know that you’ll understand when you’re older.

I’ve always known you are incredible. One day the world will be honored to know too. Don’t ever forget that you are my princess and everything I do is because I love you more than I love myself.

Love, mom.

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