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Dealing with Teens
October 25, 2003
8:26 am
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maggie0101
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Hi everyone!

How does one stop trying to control the behavior of their teens? When is it being co-dependent (trying to control the outcome) vs just being a caring parent?

I am obscessed with teaching my daughter right from wrong. I don't want to see her making mistakes that can affect her life. I've used my own examples and the wisdom of being 40 myself!

My therapist says that by waiting for a "bomb to drop" i am only hurting myself obscessing over it. He says bombs will continue to drop even through their adulthood.

When her father emotionally hurts her i feel responsible to make excuses for his behavior. Thus putting more into my bowl than i can handle.

When and how do you not sweat the small stuff? IE: i've quit pressuring about smoking cigarettes, i've quit preaching about her boyfriend (whom i dislike!), i've allowed her more freedom to make her own choices etc. However, if i keep letting this happen, am i not just giving up?

How does one just live with the attitude that i've taught the best i know and she will have to make her own choices and live by them? BTW, she is only 15!

Thanks : )

October 25, 2003
11:26 am
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Dr. Kim
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I think the most important things you can do for your children is to let them see you making good choices in your life, expaining to them why you made them and praying furvently for them! I spent many years trying to control my son's behavior. It wasn't until I cleaned up my act and started really praying for him that he started following suit. Some might argue coincidence, but I have seen the power of prayer in too many instances. Don't know your faith, but if interested, there is a great book called, The Power of a Praying Parent.

July 25, 2007
3:34 pm
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ladygeechie
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I'm a single parent and dealing with my 13 year old daughter is very difficult. I really want to pack my bags and leave home but can't. I'm a Christian and I pray for my 8 year old son and 13 year old daughter however daily I'm faced with my daughter's rebellious state. I try very hard not to upset my home and my son but often this doesn't work. I wish I had some place to put her. I'm afraid that she's going to get in trouble on the streets. Everywhere my daughter goes she has problems because it's her way or no way. I need as much advice as I can get.

Ladygeechie

July 25, 2007
3:52 pm
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_anonymous
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Been there. It will not go away on its own. Is her dad living in the home or somewhere else? In April I realized that my 13 year old son was getting out of control. I called my best friend and told her I needed help. She has a foster home and works with kids through the school district she was an expert and controlling kids. So his dad and I paid her $400.00 a month to live there. He stayed there for 3 months. Fantastic results, got great grades, got a jr. high diploma, and was taught to respect women. When he mouthed off to her she put him in the corner. When he mouthed off in the corner had to wash the wall. Was made to do chores such as cleaning horse corrals, washing dishes, doing homework, cleaning toilets. The two of you could use some time apart. Can she stay with a friend, relative or parent?

July 25, 2007
4:18 pm
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risingfromtheashes
st regis falls, ny
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what kind of conflicts do you deal with?

what are her friends like?

what is her dad's involvement?

how long has this been going on?

Have you considered/tried counseling?

July 25, 2007
4:20 pm
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risingfromtheashes
st regis falls, ny
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sorry, hit submit too soon.

The thing is - kids need consistency and consequences.

And a parent to have boundaries and enforce consequences.

It's hard work and if you never did this, it's harder NOW, as you have established patterns.

Help me understand what you are dealing with - what kinds of situations and conflict are.

July 25, 2007
4:22 pm
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risingfromtheashes
st regis falls, ny
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one more thought - depending on your financial situation - because of her age, there are MANY "boot camps" that you can send your daughter to...for troubled teens...which teach respect self reliance and such.

your daughter may not have respect for herself, and thus, no respect for others...teen boot camps teach all this and can be effective, tho pricey.

in the end, you will need to continue with whatever they teach her in boot camp...if she comes back to the same thing, it may quickly get out of hand again.

July 25, 2007
4:24 pm
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taj64
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13 is a difficult age especially with a girl. They are struggling with the idea of being independent, hormones, new feelings that cross over between becoming an adult and still yet a child. Even if you think she is acting like she doesn't need you, she does. I do know headstrong teens are very hard to deal with especially being a single mom. I know I had one and it was always his way or no way. It was very difficult time but guess what that is often a positive sign as these are the ones that grow up to be very independnent and capable of making their own decisions that are good. My son was this way, turned out great, very independent for his age now and much more mature than most his age. He is 18 and I often times I feel he has the mind of a 30 year old. He is mature. I really dont have much advice but I do feel for you. It is awfully tough today raising teens. You keep your door open as a friend but always be a parent at the same time, which oftens means going against what they want to do. But believe it or not kids know deep inside they need parental guidance and deep down they are listening and they know they need it. They just don't want you to know that they are listening. It is not cool to their friends. Whatever the word that replaces cool is, fill that in.

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