What makes my daughter derogatory towards me in front of others?

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Parent Peer Supporter

What makes my daughter derogatory towards me in front of others?

My daughter and I are very close and have open communication, although I have noticed recently that she is derogatory towards me around others which I'm not understanding. 

 

It's nothing serious, just little digs. She's very open with her opinions, and will say in front of others how my shoes look stupid with my outfit, I look silly when I laugh, things like that. We were at my parent's on the weekend, and she said in front of everyone that my eyebrows looked ridiculous "drawn on like that." My brother told me he couldn't tell and wouldn't have known if she hadn't said anything. Mostly she'll put down what I'm wearing and tell me what looks wrong with what. So it's usually around what I'm wearing or look like. 

 

It's weird and I don't understand why she does it when we have a good relationship. She doesn't do it when there's no-one around. Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated! 

Super contributor

Re: What makes my daughter derogatory towards me in front of others?

Oh @taokat My heart goes out to you. They can really be such mindless wonders sometimes. My 14 year old daughter is the same. We had an incident at Xmas where both I and her dad gave her money to buy gifts for the respective households. Come Xmas day and she had spent small amounts on her siblings and absolutely nothing for either parent. It turned out she had spent it ALL on her friends. When I told her how much it hurt our feelings she was shocked.
She also is very short tempered when she's tired or hormonal, to the point of me having to ask her to think about how she's speaking.
My view is that they do this to us, and not peers, because we're safe targets. They know we won't turn on them or retaliate. Which us why it's so important I think we model good humour and honesty in equal measure. If my daughter comments on something I'm wearing I let her know, with a smile, that I don't buy clothes to please anyone but me. That I love it and that sta d's no matter what anyone thinks.
And if she remarks on something about me, makes it more personal, I tell her my feelings are hurt. I say things like "as much as I wish I truly didn't care what anyone tho is, I do, especially you. Your opinion means a lot to me and I feel quite hurt when you tell me I look stupid." To me that illustrates for her the shared responsibility in interactions like that. Me for being worried about other opinions and her for being mindless with her words.
And definitely waiting until we're alone to do it. Because sometimes kids use us as soft targets to 'entertain'.
Does any of this sound like her?
Parent Peer Supporter

Re: What makes my daughter derogatory towards me in front of others?

Are you sure you don't have my daughter @Ngaio-RO lol! Your response sounds just like my daughter, in every way! I relate to the Xmas thing - my daughter doesn't think about getting me anything for Xmas, Mother's Day or my birthday usually. 

 

Your advice about telling her how it makes me feel is great and I'll start doing that. She loves to tell me how she thinks it's funny I wear 'mum' style clothing, and I do say to her that I am a mum so it's actually quite fitting (whatever 'mum clothing' is)!! That one we have a laugh over, but her other comments in front of others I've found confusing. 

 

My therapist says kids need to be taught empathy, and I guess this kinda falls into that category - or at least mindfulness! So it does seem natural that I teach her that her words can be quite hurtful. Seems so basic but I think my questioning of it overrid my solution making, if that makes sense!

 

Thank you so much for sharing your wisdom Smiley Happy

 

 

Super contributor

Re: What makes my daughter derogatory towards me in front of others?

I hear so many echoes of my daughter in yours too @taokat I think it speaks to the universality of teenagers. They are all unique snowflakes, and yet they share so many attributes!

 

I think that comment about teaching empathy is so spot on. I feel the same way. Empathy needs to be taught. It always confused me when parents in playgrounds would let their small children snatch away their toys from other children. The argument being that enforced sharing teaches them nothing, they have to arrive at it innately. To me, that goes against everything I know of kids or people in general. But when they are made to do it they experience the joy that comes with giving joy to others and sharing happiness. 

 

Although it all becomes a lot more nuanced when they're teenagers. By the sounds of things your daughter is kind and full of empathy, for others, she just needs a bit of tweaking when it comes to mum!

 

If it's any consolation, there have been many times when I have responded to the jokes about my appearance with a smile and 'haha, I wear stupid mum jeans because I'm a mum. hahaha" while in my mind I'm thinking...

 

The Mick insult the mick kaitlin olson themick GIF

 

I was a teenage girl once too. Smiley Happy

Parent Peer Supporter

Re: What makes my daughter derogatory towards me in front of others?

I liked what you said about the universality of teenagers, and it took me back! I thought I was so unique and individual as a teen but in reality I followed the typical teenage thought processes and behaviours. It outraged me to hear I was actually typical lol. 

 

I'm with you on the parents not stepping in to teach kids about sharing too. And brings back a funny memory. In the park with my little one one day, two other littlies were fighting over a toy, and mine sat there mesmerised by the kerfuffle!  The parents were watching too, but thought it best to let them work it out on their own. Little kids don't know how to do that though, and then they miss out on the joy, as you say, of sharing or giving. One's left devastated and in tears. We want to teach sharing and compromise so nobody's left crying. 

 

Quite possibly my daughter doesn't realise how her words make me feel, as she is kind and empathetic, and she has a good heart. I think sometimes they forget that we are actually people with feelings too, we're not just mum or dad.

 

Love the gif!! Made me laugh. Hyep!

Parent Peer Supporter

Re: What makes my daughter derogatory towards me in front of others?

Aww dear @Ngaio-RO, I'm eating some of my words!! My daughter came out this afternoon and asked if she could borrow money to buy me a Mother's Day gift. She said she really wants to get me something I really want and need. I reminded her to call her Nanna who wanted to talk to her about it, and she did, to our great surprise. She came back out of her room and told me Nanna had to speak to Pop, so that means it's something expensive. Choking on my words actually! 

Super contributor

Re: What makes my daughter derogatory towards me in front of others?

Oh bless her cotton socks. Don't feel bad @taokat That's what I love about this community. It's the perfect place to come and offload so none of it is felt by your daughter.

And this just shows that she's exactly as you describe, compassionate, kind, caring and capable of a biting wit.

What's not to love!

 

Hope you get something good!

 

 

Active scribe

Re: What makes my daughter derogatory towards me in front of others?

Hi @taokat
So she wants to show others how cool she is. I noticed this behavior when I was still at school, when there is a friend with whom you have a good time, but when there is someone else next to her, she starts making fun of you and making fun of others. So that on your background it seems better than you. How old is your daughter?

Parent Peer Supporter

Re: What makes my daughter derogatory towards me in front of others?

Yeah, I think I might keep her @Ngaio-RO lol.

Parent Peer Supporter

Re: What makes my daughter derogatory towards me in front of others?

Hey @Torry_Cox, thank you for your reply. She's just turned 15. Yes, I think part of it is her trying to build herself up. Thankfully she doesn't do it to her friends or others, I'm the only lucky recipient lol. I've had a talk with her and she wasn't aware that it would hurt or upset me. She has been thoughtful and not made any further comments, so I'm hoping that will continue!