At 12 years old, because part of it is their "job".
It's annoying as heck though, isn't it? Just makes you wanna use corporal punishment.
I think usually when my teens talk back it's because either they are a)hungry/angry/lonely/tired or because I am, or because I said something naggy or sarcastic and they are just responding in kind to what I had dished out. Generally, when I am respectful of them, they are respectful of me. Generally.
Plus, they have that whole hormonal shift going on and get a bit off balance dealing with it. Imagine having your "monthly" carrying on for months on end, but it's the first time your hormones are like this and it's making your voice change and other weird things you "can't" put words to or talk to your parents about.
When the kids got older to where they understood what they did wrong..I gave them a list of 3 things to choose from for punishment. This list was based on loss of privelages. No tv, video games, soccer, friends over, etc. To their dismay, I always had their favorite 3 things of activities on their list. I asked them why they thought they were in trouble. Explained to them my point of view. Then asked them what punishment should they get out of (list).
I know of a friend who was in the military. Anyhow, he had his kids stand in the corner in attention. When that didnt phase them, the kids had to put one arm out could not let it drop while standign at attention. As they got older, it was both arms. They hated that. Hardly get in trouble now too..wonder why lol
Well I can think of plenty of things that are "legal" that are not necessarily the right thing to do. How about calling someone names? Or just being mean? No law against those so does that make it right? Yes, you do have the option of spanking but in my opinion that is the easy way out. Brainstorm for some ideas of how you can solve this problem if that's what you want to call it...after all this IS what 12 year olds do.
I have a 12 year old boy and we still use spanking as part of our punishing. if it was really bad we do spank and take away something. Kids are kids and they will act up some way or another. You are the parent you will find away that will work for your child what ever that is. Find what affects them more and use it. My son loves reading and playing on the computer. So we would take those away, if they did something really bad we add spanking to it.
My boy is 14, I to did what you do for a punishment, but found it didn't work he just doesn't care if we take things away or when he was younger we would try smacking him, so his new DR told me to use time out 14 minutes I thought this was a joke & so did my son but some times he will go to his room when I tell him and then comes out says sorry and we move on.It just might work for you too
Being I am going through the same thing w/ my 12 yr old boy w/ talking back, just snappy at the littlest things in life, even melt downs...You figure that you would go through this w/ a girl, but boys being laid back that this should not occur....But, it does....My 23 yr old son went through this, just not as bad as my 12 yr old is now. A few different posts here actually had some great explanations and ideas, As we get older we forget how it was as a teen, we were the same way, but we don't remember all of that because in that time things were different...There is more stress on these young people and it is over loading, they are trying to figure out who and what they are at this time...So many changes w/ them and they just snap....But, even understanding of the "whys" it doesn't solve the issue of how to help and to make it stop....
What I have been doing is when he raises his voice to me I interrupt him immediately and tell him to talk to me normal or I will yell at him as he is me, I also remind him of who he is talking to, the one person he trusts in life and tries to help him and be there for him and he is disrespecting me. Usually after I make him feel he is hurting the one person that is listening to him he calms down a bit, but if he don't, I just tell him to go and sit in his room until he cools off and wants to talk to me normal, but in that time he isn't going in his room to play video games either....It's like my son is always on defense...Especially w/ his step dad, but that is another whole story...but, I have noticed if I direct him at something he raises his voice at me, and that can be the simplest things...But, if I go about it differently he complies w/ no argument...EX: I want him to pick up his room...Step dad says" Pick up that room NOW!, w/ a raise in his voice, he hits defense and argues it....As I will say, "Hey can you pick up your room for me" and his response is "sure mom"....
But, it isn't always that easy every time, but spanking, swatting isn't going to work for sure....The idea that someone wrote is taking away something they enjoy...As w/ my son it is video games so I tell him he took away a joy from me and that is being talked to normal to him raising his voice to me, I don't like it, so he will lose something he enjoys which is the video games, I never put a time on how long he loses it for, I always tell him he can play it again when I feel he can act w/ more respect towards me and talk w/ me normal.....I realize at that age they can be quite cocky as some would say and we as kids would never of dreamed of talking in such a manner to our parents like that beings we would be introduced to the floor, but in these times it's all different....If he seems to be grumpy and back talking all the time, see about going out for a drive or walk just you two and see if there is something bothering him......If you have some other ideas as well I would love to hear them being I am dealing w/ the same issues as you are....Maybe w/ both ideas we might be able to break the little monsters down...LOL...Good luck...