Selenis Leyva knows being mom to a teenager doesn’t come with an instructional manual, but it doesn’t mean she can’t dream.
“One day she was 12, and she was [really affectionate] … and the next day she’s 13 and she’s slamming doors and getting really pissed off,” Leyva says. “She’s always moody, and I’m like, ‘What’s your problem?’ “
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Leyva adds that while she was prepared for labor pains to feel like she was “dying,” no one warned her about the struggles of parenting a teenager.
“No one told me,” she says. “I mean, I was not exactly the poster child at 13, but I’ve never been a mom to a teenager [before this] … it’s like one day you’re hip, and the next day she’s like, ‘Oh, God, you’re so embarrassing.’ “
And while she understands that this is just a normal part of life, Leyva can’t stop herself from wishing she had just a little more guidance.
“I wish I had a guidebook, like … The Dos and Don’ts of a Teenager,” she tells the group.
The women all laugh, while Leyva’s OITNB costar Alysia Reiner agrees wholeheartedly with Polizzi.
“Would you please write it?!” says Reiner, 45, who is mom to 7-year-old daughter Livia Charles.
“Let me get through this first year of teenhood,” Levya replies, “And then maybe I’ll [write], How I Survived the Teenage Years. “
— Jen Juneau