People put teenagers down too much. I think a lot of teens act the way they do -because- of how adults treat them with such hostility and disrespect.
Some of my mommy-friends warned me about preteens and teens. Ages 10+. A few years ago when my eldest, William, was 8 or 9, they would say, 'you just wait until he hits preteens.'
Preteens came and went without problem. My second son, now 11, is a delightful preteen, and my 9y-o daughter is approaching that stage, and no sign of trouble thus far.
Then they changed tactics when they saw that my preteens weren't as scary as they thought they'd be.
'You just wait until Will's a teenager. It'll be just horrible!'
Will's 13 and has been since November, hit puberty at 12, and it's been great so far. He's thriving, his personality and natural humour and curiosity has just taken off lately, and I'm loving having a teenager around! He can do a lot more without help these last few years, and he seems to be taking his "teen" status to heart and helping us out a lot. My 11y-o too.
As for my friends, their latest scare-tactic is, "Well, just wait a few years until you have 3 or 4 teenagers at home!"
I like most teens. Granted, a few are just annoying, but I don't think they're the majority. The majority are interesting, they have such a refreshing and different world view, and if you get them to open up, they have such vast imaginations and endless possibilities.
Do my preteens and teens frustrate me? Make me mad? Do things that worry me? Downright annoy me some days?
Yes, yes, yes, yes.
But they're still the same kids I raised and loved, and those moments happen with all my kids, preteen/teen or not. The majority of moments are happy and positive, so I guess I either have some pretty exceptional kids, or teens really aren't as black as they're painted.