Karen is a mum of mixed sex, 15-year-old twins. And knows it. Each week she shares with us what her terrible two have been up to.
'At the age of 5 my son had two aims in life - to grow facial hair and become a Jedi Knight. His infant school teachers used to comment on the fact that he had a rather exaggerated sense of right and wrong. And to this day, he still sees things in black and white and he also has deeply conservative tendencies for which I count my blessings. He doesn't like getting in trouble and, if any of his friends start doing anything dodgy, he makes his excuses, heads for home and promptly grasses them up to his mum.
'When he was about 9, he came home from the park to tell me that one of the local teenagers had been smoking ‘swede'. While I knew instantly that the boy in question was not puffing on a root vegetable, my son clearly didn't have a clue what it was, other than that it was wrong and he didn't want to keep it to himself.
'In Year 7 and 8 I knew when his friends were setting fire to aerosol cans, shoplifting and dropping water bombs off the multi-storey car park. I currently know which of his friends smoke, who's had sex and which ones drink and take drugs. I even know which drugs and at the moment there seem to be a handful of them smoking dope. About a year ago a load of the grammar school girls got off their heads on meow meow and apparently there's one girl at their school who got caught sniffing cocaine in the toilets... she apparently got it from her mum!
'Sometimes I feel like a bit of a dinosaur as I struggle to keep up with all the changes, whether it's technology or legal highs. I do know how lucky I am to have a son who confides in me and am grateful that he values my opinions and that we can have proper discussions about things. So many teenagers become secretive and monosyllabic, his twin sister being a case in point.
'Naturally I would like to say that his openness and strong moral compass are down to my excellent parenting skills, but in all honesty, I suspect I owe Obi-Wan Kenobi a debt of gratitude. And, although my son's Lightsaber has long since gone to the charity shop, his side burns are coming on a treat.'
Karen's other blog posts...