Holding onto time

how the relationship with your parents changes throughout high school

Throughout high school many students relationships with their parents change as students amount of free time becomes more limited; however, Finnley Jessogne, sophomore, and her mother Allison Hoops have finally figure out how to hold onto the limited time they have been able to spend together since Jessogne started high school. Overall, not only just Jessogne felt a disconnect in her and her parents relationship before, but bettering the relationship   just takes finding the right timing of conversations.

Photo by Photo by Megan Monoson

Throughout high school many students relationships with their parents change as students amount of free time becomes more limited; however, Finnley Jessogne, sophomore, and her mother Allison Hoops have finally figure out how to hold onto the limited time they have been able to spend together since Jessogne started high school. Overall, not only just Jessogne felt a disconnect in her and her parents relationship before, but bettering the relationship just takes finding the right timing of conversations.

Megan Monoson, Magazine Editor-in-Chief

Although only four years of your life is spent in high school, some believe that these four years make up a significant period of growth where students’ relationships with others change — especially the relationship with their parents.

For Finnley Jessogne, sophomore, and her mother Allison Hoops, they believe their relationship has most significantly grown through their communication within Jessogne’s first year and a half experiencing high school, and that the relationship also changed as Jessogne faces bigger issues now than in middle and elementary school.

“Now there’s bigger kid issues that you’re asking for advice [on], and you’re asking for help versus the elementary school issues, which are really not that big of a deal [Talking about these issues] has definitely played a role in us getting closer,” Hoops said. “[There are] kind of just those natural things that come up as you get older. Even if [Finnley] thought she could handle it by herself, we were close enough that she wanted my opinion and she wanted some help or guidance.”

The natural things Hoops refers to include more mature conversations her and Jessogne have had as she’s matured since entering high school. This communication is the key to their relationship, and Jessogne says that simply talking with her mom more now continues to help them become closer.    

“I think it’s grown just through talking more, and now that I’m getting older I’m spending more time with her because I’m driving,” Jessogne said about the time the two spend together fulfilling Jessogne’s permit requirements. “It makes me feel good to know that I have someone that I can talk to about all of this stuff because sometimes my friends aren’t the most trustworthy people. I can’t talk to my siblings about all of this stuff because they don’t understand because they’re all younger. My mom has been through all of this stuff, like all of high school.”

This time Hoops and Jessogne spend together in the car is Hoops’ favorite because the two have short windows of time when it’s just the two of them in the car after dropping off Jessogne’s siblings and they get to talk about each other’s days. Also through this timing of conversation as Jessogne drives alone with her stepdad, she believes that this relationship has grown as well.

“I feel like [my relationship with my stepdad] has grown too because of driving, and I tell my mom stuff and she tells him stuff,” Jessogne said. “It’s more of an indirect growth rather than just a direct growth. When it’s just me and my mom, I’m more comfortable. I feel like we can talk about more personal stuff than rather when my siblings or stepdad is in the car. I think it’s just different because I’m closer with my mom, and I feel like I can’t talk to my stepdad about as many things because he doesn’t know everything that’s going on.”

Hoops also believes that Jessogne is more comfortable talking with her stepdad than her biological dad.

“I think sometimes she’s more comfortable talking to [her stepdad] because he is here all the time versus her dad who she [sees] every other weekend. They’re close and everything, but he’s not there for the ins and outs of her everyday life,” Hoops said. “I don’t even know if it’s comfortability. It’s more to catch her [biological] dad up on the entire story takes longer […] versus here her stepdad already knows the whole backstory because he’s […] heard her talking about it, so I think some of it is convenience that he’s already here and he knows what’s going on.”

Despite the fact that Jessogne is more comfortable talking with her stepdad than her biological dad, according to Hoops, one of Jessogne’s friends has been able to see the change in her and Hoops’ relationship first hand over the years of being friends and hanging out with one another.

“I think her and her mom have gotten closer [because] she always is texting her mom, and she tells her everything,” Krista Wohler, Finnley’s close friend for the past five years and sophomore, said. “Before, she didn’t tell her as much as she does now: she’s more open now. I think she just didn’t really talk about how she feels about certain people.”

While Hoops agrees that Jessogne has opened up and is more comfortable talking with her now than before,

Through this increase in communication between Jessogne and her parents as she gets older, Hoops claims that communication has been the key in her and Jessogne’s relationship.

“I would definitely say our relationship has grown the most with communication. I mean, when they were little [and] you asked ‘how was school’ all you got was ‘fine’ or ‘good’ […] versus now even just generic questions like that [are different because] she wants to share. […] She’s more willing to tell me about things that happened,” Hoops said. “She was just in here earlier asking me about homework, [saying], ‘this doesn’t make sense,’ and that’s the same thing with stuff that goes on in her life. […] Now she’s sitting on the couch, and that turns into a bunch of conversations about other things.

These conversations are where Jessogne talks about things she does not mind her whole family hearing; however, in these more in-depth conversations Hoops has with Jessogne one-on-one in the car, Hoops says she feels like she’s now talking to her daughter like an adult because the timing is finally right not only regarding Jessogne’s age, but also where and when the two are able to talk together.

“I would definitely say as she’s older now it’s like talking to an adult, and you can have those grown-up conversations and more like a friend conversations that you can’t have with a little kid,” Hoops said. “I know that sometimes we’re having conversations that she doesn’t want to hear or that she doesn’t want to partake in, but that kind of goes with the territory: as you get older you have to have more of those ‘uncomfortable with your parents’ conversations. That’s our job.”