Several years ago I started a Delphi forum/discussion group called Eats and Grunts. It was a spectacular failure, because, I guess, no other parent in the English-speaking world has a non-communicative teenager with a tapeworm ... or at least those who do don't want to discuss this state of affairs with strangers.
I want to share a recent telephone conversation I had with Thing 1 to illustrate how difficult it can be to communicate with our teenagers. He's away at college, and, as far as I can tell, he's doing great (although to the best of my knowledge, the only collegiate activities in which he participates are watching movies and napping).
Thing 1: Hi Mom.
Me (delighted to hear Thing 1's voice): Hi!!!! How are you?
Thing 1: Grunt, UHNNFF, sushi, MMMPPPHHHH, grunt, ball bearings.
Me: Huh? Say it again, honey, please.
Thing 1: KERFLUFFLE, ptomaine, HEYYYUHHHH, bail, grunt, circus midgets.
Me (nervous giggle): We must have a bad connection. I thought you said something about ptomaine poisoning and the circus? And......bail????
Thing 1: EEEYYAHHHH! HRRUUURRRR - ONTO EVERYTHING! - worry...DWAT. Specialist.
Me (getting alarmed): I'm on my way. Hang on. Mommy's coming!
I slammed down the phone, hell bent on getting to Harvard (LOL - you didn't fall for THAT one, did you?) before nightfall to save the day. Then, my better judgement overtaking me, I remembered that the most precious gift we can give our children to foster independence is roots and wings.
And he was just going to have to "wing" this one. DWAT!