The 18-23 "Know-It-All" Stage Most Painful for Parents

Most of us parents start seeing the Know-it-all phase in teenagers starting right around age twelve.  Suddenly we, as parents; become idiots and the kids think they are smarter than we are.  We deal with various phases of this stage throughout the rest of their teenage years. This phase actually continues all the way up until about age 23.  It is around age 23 that most adult children finally start showing some humility and appreciation toward their parents.   

 

It is the last part of the phase that is the hardest and most heartbreaking part of the phase.  When they reach the age of eighteen and are fully convinced they do know everything.  This is the stage at which they are now officially an adult and fully committed to proving it to us parents any way they can.  Often they go about proving it in very destructive and disrespectful ways. 

 

One very common example is an accelerated version of the back talk you see in the earlier teen years.  Only at this phase it is far beyond anything they did when they were younger because they are now purposely pushing the limits in order to prove they can now get away with what they couldn't get away with as a child.  This is the "I'm an adult now and you can't punish me like you could when I was a kid; so I'm going to talk to you any way I want to" example.  As parents we are blindsided by the hateful, mean, disrespectful things that come out their mouths.  Things that you never dreamed they would say.

 

Also, since they suddenly know everything about everything; they are finding fault in everyone.  From everything you as their parent ever did in your life.  Parents are often attacked about every aspect of their life.  From parenting, to any other aspect they want to challenge.  No topic is off limits, they are experts on everything including religion, politics, marriage, family, etc. 

 

Again, this is the child's attempt at proving they are now an adult and no subject is off limits to them.  Obviously, they are NOT mature enough to act within proper boundaries and respect.  They are simply trying to challenge the boundary.  It's can be verbal, physical, and other ways they will challenge any boundary they think they can depending on how far they want to take it.   

 

Unfortunately, while going through this phase it can be the most heart wrenching (and even frightening) phase for parents to go through.  A lot of battles with adult children can take place.  A lot of hurtful things come from them.  It runs serious risks of damaging relationships permanently depending on how far it is goes.

 

It's very difficult; there is no doubt about it.  However, the best way to get through it is by just letting the adult child go and sort out their newfound knowledge of EVERYTHING for themselves.  In most cases that would mean letting them go off on their own; away from home.  Get out of the nest and BE AN ADULT.   

 

Since they have all the answers and know everything then they should go live their life their way.  Since you do everything wrong, then by all means they should leave the negative environment and go be "free" to do it their way. 

 

This does a number of things.  It diffused the friction for both of you.  It allows them to see the REALITY of what the world is really like and that those notions they have might be a little different than what they think.  Like it isn't as easy as they think it is.  It's easy to judge someone when you have never tried it yourself. 

 

It is very painful letting an angry child go off and be estranged from you for a while.  But it is THE BEST THING YOU CAN DO FOR THEM at that phase. 

 

They have to figure it out for themselves at that age.  The sooner you allow them to do that the better all of you will be.  You have to be strong enough to endure that for them.  They will be back.  They will be a better, stronger person for it. 

 

If you are able to do that; at the end of the transition; it is well worth it.  You will be surprised that they actually value and cherish you.  Then, strangely enough, they wind up seeking your advide and guidance in the future.  Those "friends" that use to be so important to them no longer are anywhere around.

 

 

Most of us parents start seeing the Know-it-all phase in teenagers starting right around age twelve.  Suddenly we, as parents; become idiots and the kids think they are smarter than we are.  We deal with various phases of this stage throughout the rest of their teenage years. This phase actually continues all the way up until about age 23.  It is around age 23 that most adult children finally start showing some humility and appreciation toward their parents.   

It is the last part of the phase that is the hardest and most heartbreaking part of the phase.  When they reach the age of eighteen and are fully convinced they do know everything.  This is the stage at which they are now officially an adult and fully committed to proving it to us parents any way they can.  Often they go about proving it in very destructive and disrespectful ways. 

One very common example is an accelerated version of the back talk you see in the earlier teen years.  Only at this phase it is far beyond anything they did when they were younger because they are now purposely pushing the limits in order to prove they can now get away with what they couldn't get away with as a child.  This is the "I'm an adult now and you can't punish me like you could when I was a kid; so I'm going to talk to you any way I want to" example.  As parents we are blindsided by the hateful, mean, disrespectful things that come out their mouths.  Things that you never dreamed they would say.

Also, since they suddenly know everything about everything; they are finding fault in everyone.  From everything you as their parent ever did in your life.  Parents are often attacked about every aspect of their life.  From parenting, to any other aspect they want to challenge.  No topic is off limits, they are experts on everything including religion, politics, marriage, family, etc. 

Again, this is the child's attempt at proving they are now an adult and no subject is off limits to them.  Obviously, they are NOT mature enough to act within proper boundaries and respect.  They are simply trying to challenge the boundary.  It's can be verbal, physical, and other ways they will challenge any boundary they think they can depending on how far they want to take it.   

Unfortunately, while going through this phase it can be the most heart wrenching (and even frightening) phase for parents to go through.  A lot of battles with adult children can take place.  A lot of hurtful things come from them.  It runs serious risks of damaging relationships permanently depending on how far it is goes.

It's very difficult; there is no doubt about it.  However, the best way to get through it is by just letting the adult child go and sort out their newfound knowledge of EVERYTHING for themselves.  In most cases that would mean letting them go off on their own; away from home.  Get out of the nest and BE AN ADULT.   

Since they have all the answers and know everything then they should go live their life their way.  Since you do everything wrong, then by all means they should leave the negative environment and go be "free" to do it their way. 

This does a number of things.  It diffused the friction for both of you.  It allows them to see the REALITY of what the world is really like and that those notions they have might be a little different than what they think.  Like it isn't as easy as they think it is.  It's easy to judge someone when you have never tried it yourself. 

It is very painful letting an angry child go off and be estranged from you for a while.  But it is THE BEST THING YOU CAN DO FOR THEM at that phase. 

They have to figure it out for themselves at that age.  The sooner you allow them to do that the better all of you will be.  You have to be strong enough to endure that for them.  They will be back.  They will be a better, stronger person for it. 

If you are able to do that; at the end of the transition; it is well worth it.  You will be surprised that they actually value and cherish you.  Then, strangely enough, they wind up seeking your advide and guidance in the future.  Those "friends" that use to be so important to them no longer are anywhere around.

 

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