Wednesday - last edited Wednesday
Hi @Jed123 ,
Thanks so much for posting - that definitely sounds like incredibly challenging behaviour from your daughter, and I can imagine it must feel so frustrating for you when you feel like you're not able to get through to her. It sounds like you're a loving and thoughtful parent who has your daughter's wellbeing at the heart of everything you do - and I'm so sorry that you're feeling like you're failing as a parent.
I'm wondering if you've ever sat down with your daughter and talked about what consequences that she thinks would be appropriate for when she breaches boundaries, and what boundaries are non-negotiable? This article has some great ideas for setting boundaries with young people - it's also really important to make sure that you and your husband are both on the same page about what acceptable boundaries look like for you and your family, so that your daughter is getting really consistent messages from both of you. Having your daughter's input in talking about family rules and consequences might then also be helpful - I also really liked this article about different types of consequences that can be used as kids grow into teenagers.
There's also some good resources on the Raising Children's network about having predictable and consistent consequences for teenagers - though speaking as a parent myself, I know that this is sometimes easier said than done! Unfortunately sometimes consequences for young people can end up impacting the whole family, this is definitely something I've experienced as well - but it is also really important that she understand that actions that could be dangerous, like not listening at the beach and getting caught in a rip, or bringing a knife to school, come with consequences.
I'm also curious about whether your daughter has been able to explain her behaviour at all? Is she able to explain why she's lying, or hiding food under her bed? The early teen years can definitely be a turbulent time as hormones are raging, and their brains are re-wiring themselves. You mentioned that your daughter has no self control - I'm wondering if this has always been something you've noticed about her, or if it's something that seems to have become worse lately? It's great that you have already seen professionals with her, I am also wondering if her school has been able to offer support at all?
Sometimes it can be really helpful to talk to a professional to get some practical strategies to help your teenager - we do offer a free one to one parents support service that you can find more about here, that's focused on helping parents to develop an action plan for their family.
I can imagine that this must really be taking a toll on you - do you have people in your life that you're able to lean on for support?