Mothers & teen girls: A book exploring our fraught relationship

Eva Jordan, writer of 183 Times a Year on BritMumsEva Jordan is a blogger and mother to teenagers. Her debut novel 183 Times A Year has received some great reader reviews on Amazon. The book explores the complicated and highly amusing relationship between a mother and her teenage daughter. Here, Eva explains the rationale behind her book and offers hope for all us mothers of teenage daughters!

Write what you know, they said. And so I did. My debut novel, 183 Times A Year, is a humorous observation of contemporary family life. In particular, it takes a poignant, heartfelt look at the complex and diverse relationship between a mother and her teenage daughter.

Although at times the mother-daughter relationship is a road fraught with diverse and complex emotions, it can also be – like many strong, female friendships – very enriching and rewarding.

As both a mother and step-mother of teenage daughters, I had plenty of inspiration to draw from at home – yes, my daughter did actually refer to Virginia Woolf as Canary Wharf – however, like most writers, I also carried out a great deal of research for my debut novel. These are just some of the interesting and amusing facts I discovered about mothers and teenage daughters.

183 Times a Year book cover on BritMumsAbout teen girls and power

It is suggested that the mother-daughter relationship is so powerful it affects everything from a woman’s health to her self-esteem. Dr Christiane Northrup, author of the book Mother-Daughter Wisdom (Hay House), says, “The mother-daughter relationship is the most powerful bond in the world, for better or for worse. It sets the stage for all other relationships.”

Their need to separate

While most 5 year-old girls love their mothers with an unshakeable conviction, it’s often a different story by the time they reach their teens. The once-adored mother who rarely put a foot wrong is suddenly always doing or saying embarrassing things. Teenage daughters often feel torn between wanting to remain close to their mothers and wanting to separate.

The facts and figures

According to a survey reported by The Telegraph in May 2013 studying the relationship between teenage girls and their mothers, the Facebook/tweeting, selfie-taking, music and mobile phone obsessed teenage girl will, during a year:

  • Cry over boys 123 times
  • Slam 164 doors
  • Have 257 fights with brothers and sisters
  • Fall out with their friends 127 times despite spending 274 hours on the phone to them.
  • Guess what they do 183 times a year!

The top 5 rows (according to the same survey) between mothers and their teenage daughters concern:

  • Tidiness of bedroom
  • Answering back
  • Relationships with siblings
  • Relationships with boys
  • Staying out too late
Eva Jordan with her daughter on BritMums

Eva Jordan with her teen daughter. We only have to wait til age 23 for them to start appreciating us!

Hang on in there! It is estimated that by the time a woman reaches the age of 23, she finally starts to appreciate everything her mother did for her, acknowledging and grateful for her guidance through the tough times, even though she failed to realise it at the time.

Remember your own angst filled teenage years. Remember that while you are busy worrying about important things like how you are going to pay the rent or mortgage, if that lump you discovered is something to be concerned about or if you really can afford to go on holiday this year, your daughter’s concern about her exam results or her anxiety at her exclusion from that party that everyone else has been invited to, is also very real to her. After all, true wisdom comes from compassion – for yourself and others.

You can get Eva’s book 183 Times a Year in both paperback and Kindle versions via Amazon. 

Homepage image: Candybox Images via Shutterstock

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