Last night I went to the movies with my 12-year-old daughter and one of my best friends. On the way to and from the theater, my friend and I attempted conversation with my tween. Attempted. I offer now a brief summary of that “conversation”:
“Hey, what’d you think of the movie?”
“Did you like it?”
“Did you like this one better or the first one?”
“So, how was the last day of 6th grade?”
“What are you looking forward to in 7th grade?”
“I don’t know.”
“What electives are you taking?”
“I don’t know.”
“Did they let you pick?”
“So, what’d you pick?”
“I didn’t get to pick.”
(Pause for confusion on behalf of the adults)
“Wait. You said you got to pick. Did you get to pick?”
“It was too late.”
“So, were you supposed to fill something out?”
(Insert five-minute very confusing conversation about whether or not there was a form and whether or not it had to be signed by a parent – which quickly turned into more of an interrogation than anything.)
After a pause in the conversation she asks:
“Can I show you a video on your phone?”
And that’s how all the “conversations” end. The phone. Face glued to a screen. Parents effectively blocked. Silence officially in place. Except for the singing along to the YouTube videos, of course.
Mind you, my daughter is not a shy and quiet individual. She will talk to you. And she can be pretty spirited. But, it has to be about something she’s interested. Which, apparently right now, is strictly YouTube videos and performing songs from Just Dance or something she sang in choir.
OOH – maybe that’s the tactic I should take from now on? For the next six years, if I want to communicate with my daughter – I’ll just record a video of myself singing and dancing about it and post it on YouTube!
“Sweetie, be sure to use shampoo.” (Sang to the tune of a Taylor Swift song.)
“Did you get all your homework done?” (Awkward mom dancing – waving hands over head. Maybe going old school and breaking out the Roger Rabbit.)
Yeah. That should about do it. At least I know for THAT I’ll get more than a one word response.