Age 10-12 years
Today's precocious preteens often shock parents when they begin to act like teenagers. Don't be fooled, they’re still children. They’ll astonish you with their ability to conceptualize, to argue brilliantly, and then to do foolish things.
The Middle School years are a time of magical blossoming, but like all huge transitions in our kids' lives, they’re filled with ups and downs. As with parenting toddlers, parents who don’t accept and constructively negotiate their child's blossoming independence invite rebellion, or even worse, deception.
The biggest danger for tweens is losing the connection to parents while struggling to find their place and connect in their peer world. The biggest danger for parents is trying to parent through power instead of through relationship, thus eroding their bond and losing their influence on their child as she moves into the teen years.