Healthy debate may seem like correction
LONDON: It’s often said we feel the same inside all our lives, no matter how old we are. And while it’s true there’s never a moment when you suddenly feel adult, it’s also the case that we do grow, develop and learn along the way.
You are undoubtedly more confident than when you were when you were in your teens.
The 14-year-old you might well have been capable of holding her own and speaking her mind, but I bet she felt insecure, too, and prone to self-doubt. It’s a rare teenager who isn’t unsure of herself and her views from time to time. In my experience, teenage girls are especially vulnerable to criticism.
Your granddaughter hasn’t been on the planet long (it’s only comparatively recently she stopped playing with her dolls, isn’t it?) and the outside world is constantly asking her to make decisions.
Some of them seem trivial – such as what to wear for the school disco, for instance – but she has to cope with her friends’ views on every subject, which are probably voiced loudly, frequently and sometimes unkindly.
The teenage girl discovers the power of what she says very early and the old adage about sticks and stones being more painful than speech is useless when hurtful words are exchanged.
Not only does your granddaughter have to cope with that, but she has to face that challenging peer group every day. No wonder she often appears to back down as she tries to fit in.
You obviously enjoy a good argument, but if you challenge what she says, then she won’t hear what you’re saying, just that you don’t agree with her.