“Teenagers Suck”



Like you have time to read a book.

Parenting a teenager is a fulltime job, because being a teenager is also a fulltime job. Sure, they may busy themselves with school, sports, and text-messaging, but their true raison-d’etre is to perpetuate their teenager-ness 24/7. Which means while you are slacking off doing things like breathing and living, your teenagers are doing things like plotting and scheming. (They will throw in some sleeping as well, what with being teenagers and all.) Because their lives are all about them, and yours is all about working, cooking, cleaning, paying the taxes, and still finding time for Dancing With The Stars, they have the upper hand.

That’s where this book comes in.

Were you ever a lifeguard? Me neither. As Woody Allen once said, I don’t tan; I stroke. But as any lifeguard will tell you, the biggest threat to their personal safety is not a riptide or a shark. It’s a swimmer in trouble. Yes, the very person they are dedicated to help will, in their own panic and hysteria, threaten to destroy them both. Sound familiar? That’s because you’re the parent of a teenager. So how do you survive? In general, there is a Plan A and there is a Plan B.

Plan A is an intricate, well thought out series of rules, chores, and boundaries designed to keep your teen in line.

Plan B is what to do when Plan A blows up in your face.

But mostly, this book is not about parenting teenagers. It’s about how to survive parenting teenagers. It won’t be easy, but since you’re reading this it’s probably too late to back out now.

It may take a whole village to raise a child, but it takes a book to raise a teenager. Because, well, Teenagers Suck! Before we jump right into the book, you should familiarize yourself with these:


]The Ten Commandments Of Parenting Teenagers

 1.            You are always right. And if you’re not always right, it’s because your parents messed you up when you were a kid.

 2.            Praise in public, criticize in private. Most people do the opposite. Don’t be like most people.

 3.            Yes, you do have to tell them a thousand times. Stop counting and get over it. Now tell them again.


 4.            Your teens are smarter than you think, and stronger than you realize. So don’t go acting all superior just because you have wrinkles and credit cards.

5.            Remember they are growing up a lot faster than you did. Advantage, you. Growing up fast is way overrated.

 6.            When they really screw up is when they need you most. If your parents comforted you in those situations, remember how good it felt? And if they didn’t, remember how much worse it made you feel?

7.            Their defeats are 50% yours, but their victories are 100% theirs. Not exactly sure what that means, it showed up in a fortune cookie. But it feels true.

 8.            Remind yourself, they won’t be teenagers forever. Someday you will look back on these years and laugh. Definitely. Probably. Maybe.

 9.            Love them enough to let them hate you. Don’t be their friend. Be their parent. Friends come and go. You’re all-in.

10.            Whatever doesn’t kill you, makes you bleed internally.


(Bonus Commandment) You can do this.

Table Of Contents

Chapter 1: Hormones: How the Simplest Creatures Become Criminally Insane

Hormones: How the Simplest Creatures Become Criminally Insane

A Boner-Fide Problem

Taking Matters Into His or Her Own Hands (aka Masturbation)

Going with the Flow—Managing Menstruation

Some Dry Humor about Wet Dreams

Lifting and Separating the Truth About Bras

Pornography: The ABCs of XXX

Atrocious Acne

The Teen Diet: Two Pizzas and a Bowl of Cereal

Waking Up at the Crack of Noon


Chapter 2: Mars, Venus, & Teentown

The Human ATM

In Teen We Trust…NOT!

“Home, James”—Your Life as the Chauffeur 

Picking your Battles #1—When to Make Peace

Picking Your Battles #2—When to Go to War

Phrases Your Parents Used on you that no Longer Work, Not Even a Little Bit, On

Understanding (and Surviving) Peer Pressure


Chapter 3: You’re Not Leaving the House Looking Like That!

The Teen Wardrobe/Disrobe

Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow (You Hope!)

Make-Up or War Paint?

You Pierced What?

Ridiculous—Think Before you Ink


Chapter 4: Say What?What we Have Here is a Failure to Communicate

The A-to-Z’s of How to Talk So Your Teen Will Listen

The A-to-Z’s of How to Listen So Your Teen Will Talk

And Now, a Moment from our Sponsors

No Laughing MatterSerious Teen Issues


Chapter 5: Papa’s Got A Brand New Bag…of House Rules

Chores & Responsibilities

Monitoring the Monitor Part 1: Computers

Monitoring the Monitor Part 2: TV & Video Games

The Clash of the Curfew

Mission Impossible: How to Get a Teen to Clean their Room

Every Parent’s Worst Nightmare: The Driver’s License!

School Daze: How to Get your Kids to Focus on School

Cell Phone Culture

Privacy (a.k.a. Snoop, Dog)


Chapter 6: Relationships Between Drama Queens & Kings

When Their Friendships Just Don’t “Clique”

Co-Ed SleepoversAn Actual Conversation

Breaking Up is Hard to Do (And Even Harder on You)

The Truth Hurts (So Teens Lie Instead)

Betrayala.k.a. Dramalicious!

The Disposable Lifestyle

With Friends Like Those, Who Needs a Bottle of Scotch? You Do!


Chapter 7: Special K and Other Drugs: It’s Not Just for Breakfast Anymore

Recreational Drugs

Five Degrees of Drug Separation

Drug Problems

Teen Nightlife: Parties & Prom & Clubs

Dealing with Drinking

Putting Out the Fire and Curbing Cigarettes


Chapter 8: Sex: From Hanging Out to Hooking Up!

The First Time: A Relatively True Story

Talking the Talk: The Birds, The Bees, And Beyond

Homosexuality: Lesbos and Trannies and Gays, Oh My!

Chaperoning Your Dating Teen

“Going Out with Someone”What it Means Through the Ages

Defining Togetherness


Chapter 9: Rebel Yell

Letting Them Go (aka The Beginning of the End…or the End of the Beginning…or What Exactly?)

Giving Up (Some) ControlA Modern Day Fable

To Shrine or Not to ShrineHow Long Can You Go Before Throwing All Their Crap Away

Endgame: The Sky’s the Limit


Appendix: Reference Books To Complement Teenagers Suck


2 responses to ““Teenagers Suck”

  1. well, ill try to start this off in a polite way. i am 15, and to be honest i dont understand why we are treated like this. i dont have a curfew, or a dress code, or parental control on the computer/TV ect. but do i ever get into a big mess? no, never. thats because i really am smart enough to know whats best for me. noone else could know that because…well im the only me there is.but i do take advice from my parents, if they have been there and done that. i would never stay out too late by myself, and even with trustworthy friends i am careful, because i know what could happen. i would never dream of smoking, or doing drugs. i have grandparents, and other family (mostly elderly, mind you) whom i have watched suffer from that. my wardrobe is pretty much “emo” which is like things from HotTopic. but i just like that style! i just like it! thats all! my parents dont care because they know it is my right to express myself. they dont mind that i want a nose piercing for my birthday. dont judge a book by its cover, i make straight A’s! i just like what i think is cool. i dont befriend anyone i dont know on facebook. that may be asking for trouble. and porn is geared for everyone, not just teens. why would someone be low enough to look at that stuff anyway? jeez, find a partner… i know texting may seem addictive, and like a whole nother language, but its better to keep up with people when you are busy, rather than talking. all the abbreviations are just to save time and space. let us form our own opinions, and express them. respect who we are and we will respect you. if someone is gay/lesbian/transexual its not their fault (just my opinion) they wont hit on everybody in the world just because of their sexual prefrance. rather you agree or not, let them live their life. let us live our lives. we are not exactly adults just yet, but were pretty damn close. just no experiance. let us have the experiance with alittle guidance from an old pro. adulthood is not measured by age, it is measured by maturity.

  2. Judgy Von Holier Than Thou

    Hello Ms Kimes, I am 15 years old and I definitely do not suck. Teenagers aren’t the simplest creatures. You’re right, they’re growing, and learning things more rapidly than you ever will. I haven’t read your book, but I’m guessing what you mean by “Going Out with Someone”—What it Means Through the Ages, is teenagers are getting wilder as decades pass. This is not really true. Only about 25% of 15 year olds in Australia have engaged in intercourse. Oh, and surprise, surprise, I don’t drink alcohol, do drugs, have any piercings, wear make up, play video games, watch TV, ask money from my parents, look at porn, get allowance for doing chores, nor am I sexually active. I am a good kid, okay? And most of my peers are too. Attendance rates are high at school, Ms Kimes, at 95%, and that’s high because I go to a school with a small student body of less than 450 students. And I’m definitely not excited to get my driver’s license. In fact, I’m nervous the roads will not be safe when I drive. Also, my life is not all about me. You know what my parents do when I do chores? Go on Facebook and watch TV, that’s what. They don’t cook and clean, I do. And while I cook or clean, they go on Facebook. I know they’re tired, but they don’t know I am too. At the end of the day, I collapse on my bed. In fact, I sleep less than them. You’ve gotten it wrong Ms Kimes, and I will keep commenting on your derogatory articles under the name of Judgy Von Holier Than Thou in my spare time.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s