My 12 y/o daughter used to be very open. A great communicator. Very warm and gregarious.
A few months ago (right around the time her body started changing) she gradually started changing her pattern. Now she only speaks in one-word (or one-sentence) answers to direct questions. "Yes." "No." And her favorite / most common: "I don't know." Even to questions she clearly knows the answer to.
Question: "How are you feeling today?" Answer: "I don't know."
She doesn't seem "rude." Or angry. Just not interested in communicating.
The reason I added the facts that this all started around the time her body started changing and that is was gradual is because it seems to me to be a natural adolescent / pre-teen behavior pattern. (And not the result of some "event.")
Today, I explained to her that it's difficult to have a conversation with her when she only gives one-word answers. Then I paused to give her space to respond. After a long silence, she said, "Oh, so now you're going to stop talking to me!?" After explaining to her what just happened, and still getting no conversation, I finally ended by giving up and just saying, "Okay, sweetie. Thank you. Have a nice day. I love you." I try to always keep everything positive.
My question is...
What approach can I use to get her to talk to me in something other than one-word or single-sentence answers to direct questions?
Also: How hard should I try to have a conversation when I get the results described in Example #2? Should I just let everything "work itself out?" And wait until she wants to talk? Or otherwise outgrows this phase? Or should I press harder? Or try something altogether different? Like go to a movie or something?