Parents should enjoy the early years as its all downhill from there on

Most new parents think that once they have passed the years of dealing with dirty nappies and disturbed nights, the remaining years will be peaceful enough. What they do not know is that the worst years are yet to come as according to a new study, the most challenging part for the parent is when their child reaches the age of 13.

The not so surprising result of the study shows that more than 50% of the participating parents think that caring a newborn baby is far easier than coping with their teenage children. They have said that the issues caused by indifferent attitudes, growing sexual awareness and surging hormones turns the teenage period of the children into a daunting challenge for the parents.

Being conducted by the parenting website Netmums, the study was aimed at finding out the complexities of rearing children and the different challenges parents face during that period. The founder of the website, Siobhan Freegard has said that the fact is easily overlooked that parents often realise that teenage children are more challenging than newborn babies.

According to the participating parents of the study, the age of 13 is the hardest period as it provides a new identity for the children when adolescence kicks in. Most of the times, the change would seem like it had taken place overnight, with the child becoming a new and almost hardly recognisable person.

Among the 1,000 fathers and mothers who took part in the study, about a quarter admitted that they had faced most problems when their child reached the age of 13. Invariably, the toughest ages after 13 are also in the adolescence period of the children – ages of 11, 12 and 14. The research has also revealed that once the children reach the age of 17, their relationships with their parents begin to improve considerably.


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