Thought Processes as She Grows
When your daughter was little, she was a clean slate, ready and open for you to suggest how she thinks and what she thinks. Now, she's exposed to a whole world beyond you. Friends, enemies, teachers, television, music, and films all play a role in suggesting to her what and how she thinks about the world. In a time when everything is in question and her hormones make everything seem magnified, you may wonder if anything you've instilled in her is still there. It is. It just needs care and feeding.
Remember when you could point to a tree, say “That's a maple,” and she'd say, “And a beautiful maple it is!” With adolescence comes doubt; doubt born in what she hears from friends, who seemingly rule her world. Today you could point at that same tree, and you'd hear, “Jenny says that those really aren't trees at all. They're sticks. Don't you know
Girls have to move from a place of total trust in one being (usually the parent) to a trust in herself. As you notice your daughter leaning more and more toward using what her friends say as a vital part in her thought process, you'll be tempted to snap something like “Jenny's a dolt!,” or, “I don't want you hanging out with her anymore!” Rather, the best bet is to show that you're willing to listen to what the friend's point of view is, then point out to your daughter why you feel yours is important. This will help your child learn to balance what she takes in and come to her own hopefully smart-thinking conclusions.
Girls at this age can snap to quick — and not always the best — thoughts. Remember, girls this age live in the moment. Like the toddler who cannot understand that the family trip to Disney next month is actually thirty days away and not in a minute, adolescent girls think every thing they think over or consider is the absolute end of the world.
Arguing is not the answer. You'll need to find a positive way to show your daughter how to use her thought process to come to the right conclusions. Even concerning something as simple as “what kind of tree is that,” be calm and find a way to agree without a battle (which can be easier said than done).
So how do you teach a girl to avoid thinking this way? That may be impossible. But, by making sure she is safe and unable to put herself in situations that can come from rash decisions, you'll at least be secure in knowing she'll make it through this phase. And sometimes, that's the best you can do.