5 Reasons Your Tween is Feeling Down

Common problems tweens face and how you can help

A little support from you can help boost your child's mood.

 The tween years are full of change and growth. But all the changes and transitions can make even optimistic tweens down from time to time. If your tween is grumpier than usual, there is probably a reason why. Be aware of the common reasons for your tween's bad or sad mood. Below are a few common problems tweens face everyday that could be causing the problem.

5 Reasons Your Tween is Down

His Grades are Slipping: Middle school is more demanding than elementary school and some children don't always transition easily.

Increased homework and other school responsibilities can send some students into a panic or a funk, and if they're used to getting As and Bs, and are suddenly getting Cs or Ds, that can impact a child's self esteem and opinion of school. Be sure you stay on top of your child's middle school progress, and review homework occasionally to make sure your child is understanding the material. A parent/teacher conference might be necessary to develop a strategy to get your tween back on track.

She's Facing a Frenemy (or lost a friend): Relationships can change in middle school and that can lead to hurt feelings, rejection and a lot of drama. Even close friends can loose touch or turn against one another in an effort to climb the ladder of popularity. That means your tween could be dealing with a relationship problem. Be sure you're aware of your child's friendships and intervene if one of them has turned sour.

If your child has lost a friend or if a friend has turned into a frenemy, try to find ways to help your tween make other friends, such as through a church youth group, sports or other extra curricular activities.

There is Family Drama: Your family life could be impacting your tween in both good and negative ways.

If there is family stress or drama, know that your child is aware of it and might be having trouble dealing with it. You can't always avoid family problems, but you can let your child know that you love and support him, no matter what, and that will never change. 

He Has Too Much to Do: Today's tweens are super busy and have a lot to do before the weekend begins. When the weekend arrives, these same children are usually involved in sports or other activities leaving them with little or no down time or time to explore outside or hang with friends. Be sure you take an honest look at your child's schedule, making sure he has time to be a tween and relax. An honest heart to heart with your tween may reveal that he's feeling overwhelmed and unable to cope with all of his commitments. Help him learn to prioritize, possibly by picking one or two commitments that mean a lot to him. 

Puberty is a Pain: Puberty hits during the tween years and it can make life embarrassing and difficult for just about every child.

Children who experience puberty before their peers, or long after their peers, may feel awkward and alone. Physical and emotional changes can add to an already stressful tween experience. Support your tween and provide information about puberty so that she or he knows this is an experience every child goes through. Patience and understanding can help your child get through awkward moments, and move past them. Before long, puberty will just be a memory and your child will be used to the new normalcy.

 

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