My 15-year-old daughter is suddenly shy around her relatives. They are a boisterous bunch, and she used to join right in but now she's very quiet. Her dad thinks she's being too quiet on purpose and teases her about it a lot, but I tend to want to leave her alone.
I remember this happening to me as a teenager. In my case a lot of things were bothering me. I had boy troubles, best-friend troubles, and homework troubles (hey, I was 15!). And the "quiet thing" for me was because I was sure no one would understand, and I didn't want to be ridiculed (which is exactly what her father is doing).
I have tried to talk to her about it. She tells me it's just that her relatives are getting on her nerves, and that she's not working so hard to try and "fit in" anymore. I can actually understand that. So now that school is back in session, I'm going to watch her more closely and see if the "shy" thing continues with friends and acquaintances, too. I'm expecting to see some new and friends this year, too, just to see that she's "circulating." I might even talk to her teachers and see what they think.
I want to respect her privacy. She's at an age when that is very important, I know. But I also want to make sure there isn't something else going on here.
Either way, I'm going to tell her dad to back off. I don't think teasing her about her new approach to her relatives is helping at all. But I am going to keep asking myself if I am supporting her right to be quiet, if that's how she feels ... or encouraging her withdrawal.