The tween years are some of the most formative years of your daughter’s life. Bond with your tween daughter using these 10 tween-approved activities.
How to Bond With Your Tween Daughter
Bonding with a tween is different than bonding with a baby or toddler and it has its challenges. Your tween daughter is quickly becoming a young woman and she needs you to guide her along in the process.
This can be a confusing time for a young girl. She is beginning to view herself as “older” and you still see a little girl when you look at her. This can cause the two of you to begin to butt-heads (ask me how I know).
I know, I know, we want to keep them little as long as possible to preserve their innocence. At some point, we have to realize that our little girls are going to grow up and there is nothing we can do to stop it.
However, what we can do is serve as their guide and protect them along this journey. Doing so will show your daughter that you love and respect her during this confusing time.
10 Ways to Bond with Your Tween Daughter
My girls love to do their nails so I decided I would use this to my advantage and join in the fun. Once a week the girls and I take turns giving each other manicures and pedicures. I enjoy the DIY versions for two reasons: less
When the three of us would go to a nail salon we would normally be separated the whole time. While we had fun, we didn’t do a whole lot of bonding.
Coffee and Lunch Dates
Most young girls view “lunch dates” as a very grown-up activity. Going out for lunch or coffee will let your daughter know that you see she is growing up and that you value her company. It offers time to just sit and be with each other without any of the distractions that would likely occur at home.
Your daughter doesn’t have to drink coffee to enjoy her time at a coffee shop. There are plenty of other items to choose from that are caffeine free.
Mother Daughter Journals
I like to have a journal for each daughter and I to share. That way I am the only one that reads it. Basically, we write letters to
Sometimes they are too embarrassed to ask a question and other times they may have been to upset to articulate something. Writing helps bridge the gap. The journals also allow me to answer their questions or just provide comforting words.
This has been a very special way to connect with my girls. Sharing a journal has allowed me into their innermost thoughts which is very hard to do and something I really value.
Also, these will be amazing treasures once your girl is grown.
Have a Special Show
I enjoy having a special show to watch with my girls. It gives us a chance to relax and unwind together at the end of the day. The girls really look forward to this each day.
It is such a simple way to bond with your tween daughter.
Here are a few mother/daughter t.v. show ideas:
- Gilmore Girls (the original television series)
- Full House (the original television series)
- Boy Meets World
- Girl Meets World
- The Fosters
Sometimes the themes within these shows can be a little mature. It is important to look at these themes as an opportunity to open a discussion about difficult topics. Odds are good that your tween has already heard about some of these issues. Why not ensure they have the correct information?
Mother Daughter Book Club
If you like to read this is a great way to help your daughter experience books in a new way. Keep the books relevant and age appropriate but choose books that offer something more than a silly story.
Most books contain a hidden metaphor or moral inside the story. These types of stories are a perfect way to open a dialog about tough issues.
Take turns picking the books and keep it light for the most part. This is supposed to be a fun way to spend time together not a
Create a Masterpiece Together
Creating a piece of artwork is a great way to bond with your tween daughter. Creating a collaborative art piece will allow you to practice letting your daughter make decisions and show that you respect those decisions.
If I’m being completely honest here, creating something together can sometimes ruffle your feathers and vice versa. You will have your ideas, she will have her ideas and the two of you will not always agree. This is where you will both learn to compromise!
As parents, we can get so caught up in the “because I said so” realm of parenting that we forget our kids have opinions too. It’s also important that our girls feel their opinions and ideas matter while also respecting the ideas and opinions of others.
Collaborative artwork is a great way to learn this important life lesson.
Cook Dinner Together
Cooking is an important life skill that all kids should learn. Tweens are also at an age where they can start taking on a little more responsibility.
This is the perfect time to really start teaching your daughter how to cook!
Personally, I will use any excuse to spend more time with my girls these days. We have reached the typical, “mom’s not cool” stage but my girls love to cook. So, this is one place we can easily still find common ground.
I also really enjoy having company in the kitchen. Sometimes cooking dinner can be boring. Having my girls in there to talk to makes it a little less boring. Bonus: They usually tell me all about their day!
The vast majority of young girls enjoy playing with makeup. Take this rite of passage and use it to your advantage! Teach your daughter how to apply makeup appropriately and let her practice on you!
Not only is this fun but it lets your daughter know that you trust her judgment. Take turns applying makeup and try new trends. More often than not, young girls will come to understand that when it comes to makeup less is more.
That is what I have tried to convey to my girls. Makeup is fun, but there
It doesn’t really matter what you do here. The point is to teach your daughter a healthy habit while spending quality time together.
Here are a few ideas to get you started:
- walk together (the easiest and least expensive)
- take a dance class
- take a pilates class
- take a yoga class
- order exercise videos to do together
- go to a rock climbing wall together
Go to the Mall Together
Tween girls love the mall! Let them visit their favorite stores. My girls love Claire’s and Bath and Body Works. We also enjoy bargain hunting on the clearance racks at department stores.
I do realize this could get a little spendy, but if you let your daughter know ahead of time what the limits are things should go smoothly.
The tween years are tricky. There will likely be lots of ups and downs. Taking the time to bond with your tween daughter will pay off in the years to come.