“Adolescence is a period of rapid changes.  Between the ages of 12 and 17,
for example, a parent ages as much as 20 years.”  ~ Parent Unknown



December 22 to January 20

“Obstacles don't have to stop you. If you run into a wall,

don't turn around and give up. Figure out how to climb it,

go through it, or work around it.”

--Michael Jordan

If there exists a sign programmed to bring home the gold, it’s the earth sign of Capricorn, natural ruler of the zodiac’s 10th house of reputation and prestige. Their astrological symbol says it all: I am a tenacious goat and I will get to the top of the damn mountain or I will die trying, dammit! 

You’ve probably already witnessed many successes obtained by your perfectionist teen. Remember how he or she basked in the prestige of that A+ science fair project? Remember your own swelled chest? This sign simply has the ability to work harder and longer, with the kind of strategy that runs Rupert Murdoch’s empire. (Is it any surprise that Capricorn also rules big business?) To make them even more of a rare breed, they respect tradition and authority. This considerate, conservative approach usually doesn’t keep parents up till 2 a.m. worrying. If they’re going to be late, Capricorn teens even do what a free-spirited Gemini would consider decidedly uncool  – they telephone!

The ruling planet of Capricorn is the archetype of structure and responsibility: Saturn. It inspires your teen’s formidable qualities of discipline and perseverance. Couple their strategic selves with an awesome talent for working their tails off, and we understand how Capricorns usually get what they want. They snare coveted after school jobs, open bank accounts, and drive the hottest cars in the high school parking lot. But nobody can get it all, all of the time. So when they’re feeling good about themselves, and performing on all cylinders, the smell of success permeates every corner of the house, and how sweet it is! But if overworked, even the strongest room freshener grows stale.

It’s during those times, when your Capricorn teen burns the midnight oil and still fails, proving that he or she is less than perfect, that your love will be called on to perform what only love can do: support, stroke, and strengthen, and do it unconditionally, on a 24 hour basis. Being a parent is like growing old . . . definitely not for sissies!

Going with the flow . . .

This sign rules the knees in the physical body and according to the wisdom of astrologer Isabel Hickey, “This is a symbol of humility and the power to bend is the inner meaning of this part of the body.” She suggests that just as Capricorn will often scrape his or her knees as a child, their egos will receive similar scrapings later in life. This is a given if focused goals become too limited, disciplined and rigid. Then arrogance creeps in (respect for authority turns to a sneer), and Capricorn’s ability to bend is definitely threatened. Have you ever see anyone with locked knees moving to an inner rhythm?

(Disclaimer: There was one success and sexually driven Capricorn who never suffered any of these problems: Elvis Presley’s inner rhythm rocked -- with one pulsating knee facing the drums and the other facing the sax!)

Back to our challenge at hand: to help Capricorn teens balance innate discipline with their intuitive powers. To go more with their inner flow, and less with the external world’s structure, and status symbols. How can you help shift awareness to the internal world of feelings without hypnotherapy or continually playing Elvis Presley CD’s?

Before you can know the answer, Capricorn has to discover the question.

You: I have a question for you that may sound strange.

Capricorn: (turning from the computer) What is it?

You: Well, I was wondering how often you go with your gut instinct.

Capricorn: Huh?

You: I told you it would sound strange.

Capricorn: That’s for sure.

You: I mean, do you ever have hunches about things and act on them?

Capricorn: Well . . .

You: Like feelings that you listen to . . .

Capricorn: Doesn’t sound very practical. Why wouldn’t I research something more? 

You know, to find out what other people think about it . . .

You: Why don’t you trust your own feelings more? Not everything is in Wikipedia.

You have to admit, this is an interesting discussion, and it will be especially interesting to Capricorn. This sign is focused on using everything that drifts into their orbit towards success. The thought of possibly missing out on an important element – namely utilizing inner feelings – will be food for contemplation.

Now there will be times when all of Capricorn’s research, rules and structure (and yes, even some solid hunches) let them down. That’s when your usually confident teen, master or mistress of strategy and success, wakes to see the world through different eyes. The green trees, azure sky and crimson roses of yesterday have turned cement gray overnight.

The pessimistic pits . . .

So often we all have negative self-fulfilling prophecies. Once these teens taste the disappointment of defeat, the fear of failing creates an unhealthy pessimism that threatens their best efforts. It seems as if they’re always waiting for it to rain. Unlike a simple broken arm or twisted ankle, ailments that parents can actually do something about, Capricorn hurt hides in the shadows. Trying to brighten their outlook with an infusion of joy isn’t too easy either. As the famous Capricorn writer JD Salinger admits:  I am kind of paranoid in reverse. I suspect people of plotting to make me happy.

So their unspoken fear for holding back and curbing spontaneity is: “ I won’t take that chance because it probably won’t work anyway.” The more they practice pessimistic-driven restraint, the quicker it becomes the norm. Afraid to try anything new, they continue to seek the security of fact-based, time-tested, authority-approved certainties . . . and life becomes as much fun as a mortician convention in Omaha.

(This excerpt from The Capricorn Teen, is followed by the chapter: “Power To Parents” which lets you find your own Moon sign, and learn how to better nurture and communicate with your teen.)