Our 1st born was a joy to raise until she turned 13 (now 17) & we're growing weary to say the least! Pls tell me this is normal & she will come back as a delightful daughter & not a sourpuss, self centered, & disrespectful young adult that is perpetually in a bad mood! My husband is still hoping for a smile & a kind word but most of his attempts are dismissed. I am ready to ship her to China for a few years! Even though we are at two extremes, my husband & I are committed to consistency, loving discipline & consequences. We are noted by her as the strictest parents in town & we are perfectly fine with that. She has many friends, parents love her, & she thrives in high school. It seems she turns to the dark side when she comes home.
How do you suggest keeping a pulse on teenagers with what's going on in their lives (offer suggestions for making good decisions, talk through and support them through big or small challenges, or just give them a hug on hard days) when they despise being in your presence, offer little responses, and will not divulge anything? My husband has better luck than I about taking her for coffee or dinner but she is still a closed book. In the past, we have found out about small bouts of promiscuity, drinking, and bulimia & we often feel that we were behind the 8 ball on identifying these issues b/c we just don't know our daughter. When the first issue arose, she sought the advice of a counselor which helped but she has no interest in seeing the counselor or anyone else now & just wants us to stop talking about these concerns. She just wants us out of her way, her business, her life! Suggestions? P.S. We have a 12 year old daughter that is watching everything!
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