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How many times has your tween girl moaned “My life is over” as she storms out of the room? Ahem… how many times today!?
Maybe you’re at 12 times today and it’s only 10 AM. Mom, you’re not alone.
In our home, we are in the transition from little to tween. My girl needs a different parenting style from me in this more mature stage. It’s time for me to learn how I can be a good mentor to my child. Let’s look at God’s word as the foundation for mentoring. Titus shows us what model we are to be as older women.
Titus 2:3-5Older women likewise are to be reverent in their behavior, not malicious gossips nor enslaved to much wine, teaching what is good, so that they may encourage the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, to be sensible, pure, workers at home, kind, being subject to their own husbands, so that the word of God will not be dishonored.
So what does that mean for my growing daughter? How am I to mentor my own child?
The Best Way To Mentor Your Girl
Can your mother be your mentor?
When they are babies they need us to do everything. But as they take each new step toward adulthood they need to learn how to do everything for themselves.
I don’t know about you, but I am trying to hang onto those moments where they need me. Those moments are few and far between as they stretch for Independence and it makes me both joyful and sad.
- Sad that the sweetness of innocence is gone.
- Joyful to see the beautiful young ladies God created to shine for Him!
The difference between parenting and mentoring
You know your girl best. But often the tweens are the best time to start moving from girl mom to mentor. In this span of a tween, 8-12 years old, it is good to check in and gauge her maturity. Some girls are more mature earlier, some are slower to blossom. Here are some things to watch for in your girl.
Some indicators your girl is ready for mom to mentor her:
- She understands some biblical truths
- Maybe even questions them
- She is pushing all the boundaries reaching for independence
- You see peer pressure alive and well in her choices
- It seems she cares what others think of her
- She is clearly a leader or follower already
- The drama and attitude are reaching teenager proportions
- She is a chaotic ball of emotions (dare I say hormones)
- You notice her trying to problem solve
- Her problems and yours
These are just a few things that indicate she needs to be actively mentored.
How do I mentor my child?
As your daughter grows, it’s important to learn the difference between parenting and mentoring. We need to take the time to parent the heart of our kids and build a relationship with them. This will provide stability for her as she grows from tween to teen. It also can have profound and often life-changing effects on your girl as she becomes an adult!
A mother is focused on:
- Meeting every need and want
- Often before they complain
- Behavior modification
- Obedience is key here
- Discipline is involved
- A mother corrects (maybe even nags)
- The child is told what to do and expected to follow directions
But a mentor is focused on:
- Heart Attitude
- Spiritual Preparation for adult life
- Growing you to the next step in life
- A mentee is asked to help solve the problem
- Independence is taught – to take care of yourself and help serve others
There is an awkward in-between stage. Children take steps toward independence and often step backward – afraid of what they thought they wanted. That is why I advocate mentoring.
The Best Way to Move from Girl Mom to Mentor
For years I was told I would never be a mother. In that, God showed me the joy of being a Spiritual Mother. That looks like spending time getting to know women. Taking time with her one on one to talk about the real things in her life. Finding tools and resources to help her grow and mature – until she is ready to mentor another woman.
Some of the best tips I’ve found for being a great mentor can also be applied to mentoring your girl.
We started the process of mentoring with our girls early – just to test it out and get them used to the idea. This is what it looks like:
- Each month we take a morning away from the house (one on one).
- It is crucial that it be a fun neutral place where they won’t feel like a little kid but a young lady.
- We spend time talking “Woman to woman” about whatever they want to talk about.
- No mothering allowed.
- I bring the friend side of me – just listening, encouraging and asking questions.
- Then we transition into what we are studying in the Bible together
- We talk about real prayer needs
- To end our time we transition back to fun girl time – just to enjoy each other.
We’ve used several studies over the past few years and Absolutely Loved Lee’s Girls Created to Shine Study.
Girls Created to Shine is a Great Mentoring Tool for Tween Girls
Personally, I love a deep Beth Moore Bible Study, but my Tween girl cannot stay focused that long. She needs a quick win in her Bible study time. It has to be Fun, Fast and Relevant to her world!
Girls Created to Shine is not all teachy-preachy but it does cover real topics that girls face in today’s world. You can take it at your own pace and drag it out over the course of a year if you meet monthly.
There are Fun Girl Activities in the study that have Biblical Application. My tween girl’s favorites (which she still pulls out to do together) are Smoothie Recipes & How to Give a manicure!
The Study is easy to use and relevant to her world which made it a Win-win for us!
The Point is to find that balance with your Tween girl. Knowing when to switch from Girl Mom to Mentor.
Our goal is to build a relationship that will last as she leaves the nest one day. We need to prepare her to make the real-life decisions. And what better time than in your home where you can catch her if she fails!
Don’t get me wrong, there are still lots of times she needs me to be the Girl-Mom, but I know I’ve gone too far back in that direction when the whining and “My Life is over” pop up.
Is your Tween girl ready to Move into a Mentoring Relationship with you?
We have a printable to help you get started down that path! Get started today and download your mentoring checklist and tips and get private access to our Freebies Hub of Biblical Resources! You will both be blessed and it’s not complicated promise! You can do it and God will equip you!
Are you a Mom raising Godly boys?
Our All-Knowing God created boys and girls with so many differences we can’t number them. He had a plan and a design. It is critical that we raise them up to be who He created them to Be. Godly Boys were created with a wild nature and long for adventure – just like God. How can we nurture them to raise godly men?
Tiffany is a Jesus Girl with a passion to Encourage and Equip Wives and Moms through practical Biblical Discipleship. She loves to unite with biblically minded women to grow their Christian Marriages inside her growing Facebook Community!