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On the Same Wavelength

Son 1 is turning 14 tomorrow and you’d think that that would scare the crap out of me. Teenage boys seem like a different species, don’t they? Well no. I totally get where teenage boys are coming from, because, when you think about it, they have a lot in common with perimenopausal women (that’s women aged 40ish+ who are in the 10 year lead up to the big M).

Honestly, the resemblance is uncanny.

Firstly, we like to eat. A LOT. We wake up starving, and we’re starving all day long, then we go to bed starving and even wake up in the middle of the night starving. On those occasions when we give in to our insanely voracious appetite, we binge on “healthy snacks” because we threw all the good stuff out during our diet, then we get started on the kids’ stuff, lunch box penguins and caramel wafers and the like, then whatever holiday chocolate they have left over from Easter, Christmas, Halloween. If we get really desperate, we’ll even have a go at the random box of toffees that inexplicably appeared out of nowhere and have been hanging around the kitchen cupboards for the last 3 years. This is similar to how teenage boys come home from school and eat a loaf of bread and 3 packs of Super Noodles in one sitting, except us women often do our volume eating in secret because when we eat as much as we want to in public people tend to raise their eyebrows. It’s pretty shocking how much food we can comfortably put away. And it’s not just me. All women my age have the capacity to eat non-stop because the nerve endings in our stomachs are deadened from all the years of eating our feelings*.

Also, we like to sleep A LOT. We would sleep all day if we could, and often doze off on the sofa/at our desks/waiting in line to pick kids up. Granted we do usually get to bed earlier than the boys (8pm bedtime ladies? Ooof don’t mind if I do) but technically this is just a reverse lie in out of sheer necessity. Believe me, if we didn’t HAVE to get up because we need a wee/have kids to sort out/jobs to go to/a house to run/inexplicably woke up at 5am and can’t get back to sleep (not because we went to bed at 8pm or anything) we would be sleeping in ‘til noon just like those teenage layabouts. We can even sleep a bit with our eyes open, standing up and while talking to someone, our brains just sometimes need a little recharge*.

Mood swings. Stubbornness. Feeling pissed off for no apparent reason. Check. Check. Check.

Then there’s the unhealthy obsession with our bodies and how they’re changing beyond all recognition. Suddenly they can’t be relied upon to behave in the way they used to. It. Is. Constant. We’re going in the opposite direction to our young male counterparts of course but I have a strong suspicion that over the next few years mine won’t be the only Google search history in the house which is full of “is this normal”?

And finally, the big one… We think about sex waaaay more than you think we do. In fact, we think about it ALL THE TIME. This is completely opposite to how women are in our twenties and early thirties when we were all a bit meh about it and frankly could take it or leave it. Oh no, our dwindling window of fertility means that our bodies (note, NOT our minds) are furiously trying to procreate before it’s too late making us desperately horny all the time, it’s just science*. This means that, through no fault of our own, most of us have developed a mild addiction to porn.

So no, I’m not worried about Son 1 turning 14, because I feel like we’re completely on the same wavelength. In fact, I truly think that women understand teenage boys much better than the men of our age, whose memory of trying to exist in this constantly hungry, horny, tired, and pissed off state is now likely getting hazy.

And yeah, if you’re having a nice conversation with Susie from Accounting and her eyes appear to be glazing over during your take on the latest coronavirus measures, I’d put money on it that she’s thinking about sleeping, wanking or food, just like any healthy teenager. It’s science*.

*Not scientific fact

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