11-18-2019 05:50 AM - last edited on 11-21-2019 03:54 PM by Claire-RO
Hello all....this is my first time posting here. I found this forum this morning as I really need some help. Currently, my eyes are half swollen shut from crying so much yesterday. I am having major issues with my daughters...ages 15 and 17 (almost 18). Their father and i are divorced and I am remarried. We have been apart for 6 years so this isnt a new thing. We live close to each other for the kids sake. Their father allows them to get away with basically anything and do whatever they want. I am different and while I am pretty lenient, I have rules. No drinking, smoking, lying, etc. Because of this, it causes many problems. They like being at my house because I buy them things and it is a much cleaner environment. They like staying with their father because he allows them to do whatever they want and there is very little parenting. My older daughter and I were estranged for a couple months due to her behavior and lack of respect. Calling me every name in the book and not listening. Police were even involved. We recently rekindled the relationship but she continues to be disrespectful, scream at me, and not listen. My husband who has been in their lives for three years snapped for the first time ever yesterday and told her to "Get the hell out of the house" while she was screaming at me. It resulted in a very bad end result where both daughters say they will never come back to my house due to my husband yelling at them to leave. I am so sad that it came to that as I only want a healthy relationship with my kids. They have done very horrible things to me in the past one of which included placing a bag of horse **bleep** on my front porch. Yes, that is sadly true. I am a good mom, work full-time, have family dinners, buy them things and go above and beyond for them. The problem arises when I tell them no or I confront them about being sneaky with drinking/smoking. I have had to install cameras around the exterior of my house to make sure they do not bring certain people in, I have to lock my bedroom door with a key when I leave so that they do not take or "borrow" my items that they never return. I am just extremely sad and do not know how to make things better. I want to see my kids and i want them to grow up to be respectful adults with goals. I know my daughter views it as I chose my husband over her when he yelled at her to leave. It is not the case, he is just sick of them abusing me. I really do not know what to do. I am worried that I will never see them again. I wondered if I should ask my husband to apologize but I have received advise that I should not have him do that. I am worried the longer that I do not talk to them, the worse things will be. Looking for any sort of advise. Please and thank you.
11-18-2019 02:25 PM
Thank you for sharing what you are going through. It can be hard to put your experience into words to an online community but you've done a good job of explaining the situation. From what you've described you are doing your best to navigate what is a really difficult challenge - there are many parents here that I'm sure will be able to relate to the stress of putting boundaries into place.
I'm just wondering if you've got any support at this time? Friends, family or even a counsellor? Having people to talk to during times takes some of the pressure off. Of course, we are also here to listen to you
Do our parent champs have any guidance to offer?
11-18-2019 07:05 PM
Big hugs @lookingforhlp28 @it sounds like you have been through the wringer with these girls. It’s so hard when parents aren’t on the same page either.
Maybe at this stage it’s best if you do take a step back and look after you. Keep the lines open and keep your boundaries. You don’t have to say “no” to them just be firm about your expectations and limits in a loving way.
It might also help that when they aren’t living with you to cut back on all privileges you provide.
Honestly, I need to think about this more but just wanted to let you know you’ve been heard and I’m thinking of you. Take care.
11-19-2019 04:22 PM
Oh, sweetie. I hear your deep love and concern for your daughters. I will come back, write a longer response, and check in with you soon (it's night time in my part of the world), but I did not want you to welcome you to this community of great folk. Your pain has been heard.
It is very, very difficult being the parent who tries to 'hold the no'/keep boundaries for the safety of your gals, as well as the well being of everyone else in your home.
From what it seems, your husband may have been trying to reinforce the rules of your home as well? No abusive language and so on. If that is the case, then I wouldn't have him apologize. If things were said in addition/in heat that that warrant an apology, sure...maybe an apology on his part is warranted. But, I wouldn't dwell on his behaviour as his actions seem like a bit of a 'red herring' in all of this.
Do the girls receive counseling at all? Do you receive counselling as a family (any combination of family members)? What about you? Do you have a counsellor that supports you?
I get your worry that you will never see the girls again and that they might never go to your home again. It sounds like you and your older daughter have recently transitioned back to having a relationship again and I imagine the fear of losing her again seems very close and real. Plus, your fears are further magnified by the absence of solid parenting at their dad's house. I get that.
Is there the opportunity to meet with them somewhere else? Take them for lunch or another outing? Yes, to some it might seem that you're rewarding their behaviour, but perhaps the goal is to just make a little bit of contact again. If they will meet you, then maybe the message is that their behaviour towards you has been unacceptable *and, at the same time, you will always love them.
One of the future goals might be too call them on their behaviour and establish some home rules, but perhaps the focus now, when things are more tenuous, is on 'connection' over 'correction'?
Are they still engaged with/attending school? Is there a school counsellor there that can be of any support? Initiate contact with them etc.?
Again, welcome to this forum. Please send an update or more details when you can.
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