So far (or if you're through them), how would you describe your teen years?

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If you want to write a little about the whys of how your teen years have been/were for you, we'd love to hear about it.

Editor & Founder, Scarleteen: Sex Ed for the Real World
Author, S.E.X.: The All-You-Need-to-Know Progressive Sexuality Guide to Get You Through High School and Col

I've had a mixed bag - I had some great times, including a lot of academic success and an amazing and supportive romantic relationship. I've also had a lot of family conflict and struggles with depression and suicidal thoughts. I'm glad to be out of my teen years, but I wouldn't want to erase them from my history. They were important in shaping who I am now.

I think for me, my teenage years were a time of personal growth and learning. I'm 20 now and I think the last 8 years have been a major rollercoaster. I learnt a hell of a lot about relationships, mental wellbeing, love, education and most importantly the importance of friendship and family.

I'm having a tough time finding the words to explain why my teen years were lousy. I just wasn't happy (for so many reasons) and my decisions reflected that. I do want to say that I'm sad to see the majority of those polled, so far, feel the same way.

38 years
two kids: 21 yrs, 13 yrs.

I feel like this is one of those polls where it would be interesting (and more accurate) to be able to check multiple options--not that I'm asking for it, because it seems like it'd be a hell of a lot of work. But I know that for me personally, my teenagehood (nearly over; I turned nineteen a couple months ago) it's been the best years of my life so far, because I have grown so much and experienced so many amazing things and met so many incredible people; then again, it's also been a mixture of good and bad, especially as compared to my childhood. There's been a lot more conflict, but for the most part it's been very satisfyingly resolved, and overall led to improvements in my life and relationships. I struggled with an unhealthy relationship and learning who I was and what I wanted, both in relationships with myself and others and in relation to the idea of a purpose to my life.
And, y'know, it's been the best years of my life *so far*. It's hard to imagine how things could get more wonderful, although I have a few ideas, but I'm willing to bet that it just gets better from here. :D

Hindsight being 20/20, I see now how bad they really were even if it didn't always seem like it at the time. While going though them (I'm 23 now), often I just muddled through and tried not to dwell on the awfulness. Now I see how horrible some things were, and how my coping was a mixed blessing--it did allow me to get through, but it has provided a hell of a lot of work to adjust to a more "normal" way of being in the world.

My teen years sucked. In the beginning I was painfully shy and unpopular. When I finally started to come out of my shell a little as a senior I ended up pregnant from my very first boyfriend/ sexual expirience. For the rest of my teen years I was dealing with massive body changes resulting in terrible self esteem, lots of pain, a colicky baby and a husband that slept around and ignored me. So yeah they sucked.

So glad I'm out of them. My father was abusive and it was the first time I tried to kill myself.

I am only fifteen, so perhaps I haven't hit the horrible bit yet, but honestly I've never felt better about myself. I've found it much easier to talk to people in recent years, and I seem to be able to rationalize myself through the hormones. And sure I have acne, but hey, just part of life. I'm pretty sure that I'd have a lot lower self-esteem if I weren't home schooled though, given my interactions with fellow teens. Public schools sound like hell.

But ah...yeah. At this point I'm just looking forward to college.

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