What Testosterone?

Life is interesting at our house since my daughter left for college last Fall.  The boy hormones that come with two teenage boys (13 and 17) are running rampant.  And in entirely different ways.  PR is only 13.  It is a struggle to get him to take a shower, brush his teeth … and to control the anger that bursts out of him at times for no reason other than a hormone surge.  He wants to play baseball, run in the canyons and hills and go "air-softing" with his buddies.  Girls are still … ewwwww!  And – did I mention it is a challenge to get him to take a shower?  And wear deodorant?  Because there are times when he will actually exert the effort to PRETEND he has showered and he really won’t.  Yes, he will get his hair wet, run the shower BUT NOT GET IN IT and emerge acting as if he is clean.  And then I will not so affectionately say, "You stink and if you don’t shower I will hop in there with you and scrub you myself!"  And because he is 13 there could be no more horrifying thought than THAT so he manages to get his smelly self into the shower.  And no, I keep explaining – a dunk in the pool does not count as a shower!  (It was 93 degrees today … here in The OC!)

Then there is RC, my seventeen year old.  He showers.  Yes, he showers, he wears deodorant, AND cologne and he spends eons in the bathroom perfecting his "look".  And he must have perfected it because lately there seem to be girls everywhere.  Girls stopping by, girls in the jacuzzi, girls at parties.  In all seriousness he asked awhile back, "Why would anyone want to have just one girlfriend?"  Of course this creates a whole new set of parenting issues.  Like a few weeks ago when I spotted a hickey on his neck.  (Not visible in this photo of RC hamming it up for his photo shoot!)

Rc_3

Now I am hardly a prude.  But the hickey surprised me because it was so unexpected.  "RC", I asked, "Who gave you the hickey?  Was it Mary, Carrie, or Jo?"  (All girls that had been around recently).  And he said, "It was Kelly".  Kelly who??  "THERE IS NO KELLY," I thought.  But there was – Kelly was a girl he had met that night at a party.  I am not a big hickey fan.  Hickeys mark your territory.  And meeting a girl and getting marked as "taken" all in the same night?  So very quickly the following ran through my head, "Think quick, think of something clever and motherly to say.  Give him a lecture on respecting girls/himself and safe sex all at the same time!"  And then … nothing came out of my mouth except, "Good night RC".

I do want to go on record here saying that I really don’t think I am a complete failure as a mom.  I have tried to instill good morals in my kids and to teach them right from wrong and to respect other people and all those lessons we moms try to teach.  But he is seventeen and he can’t seem to think past his hormones right now.  So I waited a day or so and then I carefully broached the subject.  I brought up self respect, and respecting girls and … finding girls that respect themselves enough not to be giving hickeys to guys they met an hour before.  RC stood there patiently and didn’t even roll his eyes as he … pretended to listen.  Then I added that although I certainly do not condone teenage sex … did we maybe need to review safe sex?  And THEN the eye roll happened and he quickly answered, "No we don’t need to do that!" and I knew he was done mollifying me.  A few days later I tried to very casually bring up the subject again … just in a casual conversation kind of way.  But I got no response except I did detect just the slightest smile in his eyes . . . like he thinks his mom is very – amusing.   

9 Responses to “What Testosterone?”

  1. jo

    Hickies (?sp)
    One day, about a year ago, I thought to myself, “self, why don’t you go to Quizno’s and just surprise KO, since you haven’t seen her much lately”. KO is my 18 year-old daughter…likes boys very much, particularly the “bad boy” breed…the ones that take your breath away (in horror). I proudly walked into Quizno’s and KO was standing at the register. Holy sh—-t! My eyes were fixed on the giant purple mark on her neck! Have they not even learned the fine art of make-up and turtlenecks? I also think the things are down right trashy looking. Look world…someone sucked on my neck last night…which naturally begs the “what else happened” question. I handled that one poorly…just too shocking. Thank goodness we joke about it now. There’s something nauseating about thinking about your children engaging in sexual activities…the same nausea they feel when they think of their parents having sex, I’m sure.
    So, yah, that topic “safe sex”. Here’s one….we have a basket with reading material in the bathroom….I just happened to leave some brochures in there like, “How to Make Love Without Doing It”…..”Guide to Sexually Transmitted Diseases”…..”What is HPV?”. I know they were read because KO came out of the bathroom one day quoting one of the brochures.
    I also share things I see at work, especially the problems I encounter with my patients at the College health clinic (where I work 8 hours/week). “I saw two girls today with genital warts and the one girl had only had sex with one person…huh?”
    Kids!

  2. jo

    Hickies (?sp)
    One day, about a year ago, I thought to myself, “self, why don’t you go to Quizno’s and just surprise KO, since you haven’t seen her much lately”. KO is my 18 year-old daughter…likes boys very much, particularly the “bad boy” breed…the ones that take your breath away (in horror). I proudly walked into Quizno’s and KO was standing at the register. Holy sh—-t! My eyes were fixed on the giant purple mark on her neck! Have they not even learned the fine art of make-up and turtlenecks? I also think the things are down right trashy looking. Look world…someone sucked on my neck last night…which naturally begs the “what else happened” question. I handled that one poorly…just too shocking. Thank goodness we joke about it now. There’s something nauseating about thinking about your children engaging in sexual activities…the same nausea they feel when they think of their parents having sex, I’m sure.
    So, yah, that topic “safe sex”. Here’s one….we have a basket with reading material in the bathroom….I just happened to leave some brochures in there like, “How to Make Love Without Doing It”…..”Guide to Sexually Transmitted Diseases”…..”What is HPV?”. I know they were read because KO came out of the bathroom one day quoting one of the brochures.
    I also share things I see at work, especially the problems I encounter with my patients at the College health clinic (where I work 8 hours/week). “I saw two girls today with genital warts and the one girl had only had sex with one person…huh?”
    Kids!

  3. jo

    Hickies (?sp)
    One day, about a year ago, I thought to myself, “self, why don’t you go to Quizno’s and just surprise KO, since you haven’t seen her much lately”. KO is my 18 year-old daughter…likes boys very much, particularly the “bad boy” breed…the ones that take your breath away (in horror). I proudly walked into Quizno’s and KO was standing at the register. Holy sh—-t! My eyes were fixed on the giant purple mark on her neck! Have they not even learned the fine art of make-up and turtlenecks? I also think the things are down right trashy looking. Look world…someone sucked on my neck last night…which naturally begs the “what else happened” question. I handled that one poorly…just too shocking. Thank goodness we joke about it now. There’s something nauseating about thinking about your children engaging in sexual activities…the same nausea they feel when they think of their parents having sex, I’m sure.
    So, yah, that topic “safe sex”. Here’s one….we have a basket with reading material in the bathroom….I just happened to leave some brochures in there like, “How to Make Love Without Doing It”…..”Guide to Sexually Transmitted Diseases”…..”What is HPV?”. I know they were read because KO came out of the bathroom one day quoting one of the brochures.
    I also share things I see at work, especially the problems I encounter with my patients at the College health clinic (where I work 8 hours/week). “I saw two girls today with genital warts and the one girl had only had sex with one person…huh?”
    Kids!

  4. jo

    I love the picture…..no words necessary…teenage testosterone!

  5. jo

    I love the picture…..no words necessary…teenage testosterone!

  6. jo

    I love the picture…..no words necessary…teenage testosterone!

  7. Kristan Hoffman

    Haha, I’m not gonna lie, your son is a cutie!
    And when I got my first (few) hickeys, I thought they were pretty cool. Someone wanted me! 😀 Only later did I encounter other people’s negative reactions to them, and only now as an adult do I realize how unnecessary they are. So (as you seem to realize) I’m sure he’ll grow out of it.
    In the mean time, I’m going to have to agree with “RC”: his mom is pretty amusing. 🙂

  8. Kristan Hoffman

    Haha, I’m not gonna lie, your son is a cutie!
    And when I got my first (few) hickeys, I thought they were pretty cool. Someone wanted me! 😀 Only later did I encounter other people’s negative reactions to them, and only now as an adult do I realize how unnecessary they are. So (as you seem to realize) I’m sure he’ll grow out of it.
    In the mean time, I’m going to have to agree with “RC”: his mom is pretty amusing. 🙂

  9. Kristan Hoffman

    Haha, I’m not gonna lie, your son is a cutie!
    And when I got my first (few) hickeys, I thought they were pretty cool. Someone wanted me! 😀 Only later did I encounter other people’s negative reactions to them, and only now as an adult do I realize how unnecessary they are. So (as you seem to realize) I’m sure he’ll grow out of it.
    In the mean time, I’m going to have to agree with “RC”: his mom is pretty amusing. 🙂

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