Heard a great term the other day … “meanager” … as in “viciously acerbic, socially cruel, perpetually sarcastic teenager.” Now, full disclosure here, I do not have a teenager. I have a 9-year old daughter who is an absolute angel, does what she’s told, and always follows the rules (knock on wood). However, my wife still apologizes to her mom for her behavior as a teenager between the ages of 13-16, and I am well aware of the secret life of delincquency I led during my own teenage years. So we have no idea what’s in store for us when our little angel has her turn at grappling with adolescence.
That said, we have introduced this term in our home and we are now identifying behaviors we see out in public or on TV as examples of being a “meanager” and it has really helped to differentiate between acceptable and unacceptable behavior. Our daughter uses it sometimes on her own when she tells us stories of what happened at school; one friend being a “meanager” to another at the lunch table even though she’s only 10 years old and not a real teenager yet.
Now, I have been known to have an analytical mind at times and can categorize, plan, compartmentalize, format, pattern, and extrapolate pretty much anything and usually do. So I’m completely unprepared for raging hormones, unpredictable outbursts, and random acts of inconsiderate behavior that I’m sure await. But using the term “meanager” has been a great behavior identification tool for us in prepping our child about what is/isn’t acceptable behavior when she gets older and us (hopefully) having an established behavior modification term to separate what is unacceptable from what we will just have to tolerate as everyday teenage angst and drama.
Will let you know how its going in another 4-5 years when we hit that eye wall. If you’ve got a head start on us, please let us if it actually works. It will give me time to come up with a Plan B.