Although parenthood is filled with many joys, it also has its stressful and difficult moments, too. For many parents, when their children go through puberty, it can be a particularly trying time.

Puberty generally starts from ages 11-13. While they transition into adulthood, children may be moody, grumpy, sad or anxious. During this time, teens are often trying to figure out who they are, where they stand with their peers and in society. Because of those changes, sometimes teens may feel like complete strangers to their parents. These behaviors are completely normal, but can leave parents with questions.

Some behaviors are perfectly normal and don’t warrant much concern. These include teens needed more alone time; an increased use of social media—but not to the detriment of other interests like sports, music or the arts; exploring new interests or even trying on different personalities; being emotionally sensitive; becoming focused on their physical appearance; turning to friends for emotional support, rather than family; and beginning to engage in mildly risky behaviors around alcohol, drugs and sex.

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