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My 15 year old daughter


My 15 year old daughter

Morning I have a 15 year old daughter that refusing to go to school at the moment .she started year 10 last September everything was ok for a bit and after the Christmas  break she keeps saying that she feels sick and dizzy and then she started refusing to go in school I managed to get her into school until one day in march I had to go into work early and that day she didn't go into school for some reason .most mornings she said that she feels sick so I took her to the doctor's and they couldn't find anything wrong with her so I got her to go to school but when the school Easter holidays she was ok but when they started back in April after the Easter holidays she started refusing to go .I went into school to have a meeting with them and they came out to our home to see if they could give me support with her finally she went back into school in may and went until they broke up for the summer holidays .she started back in September everything seems ok with her but just before they broke up in October for half term she started refusing to go into school saying that she feels tried and sick all the time taken her to see the doctor but this time they said it was anxiety around school it's got that bad that she don't get out of bed until after lunch time and wouldn't go out with friends at the weekend I spoken to the school had a few meeting with them they also been out to speak to my daughter but she wouldn't tell them anything we are so worried about her and I don't know what to do any more with her .


Re: My 15 year old daughter

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Hey @Maria, welcome to ReachOut Smiley Happy 


I can see from your post that you're pretty distressed about your daughter and her relationship with school, particularly regarding her anxiety and lack of attendance. 

ReachOut have some articles on the topic, this article looks at a student's experience with managing her anxiety at high school, and another looks at understanding teenage anxiety for their parents'. Just wanted to let you know that the resources are Australian based but I hope they will still be useful.


Some other adults on the forum might have some more advice so I'll just tag them here Smiley Happy @FreakedOut @hippychick @Schooner @sunflowermom


- Andrea

Parent/Carer Community Champion

Re: My 15 year old daughter

Hi @Maria

I understand how stressful it can be when our kid refuses school.  My daughter suffers from anxiety and depression which has resulted in the past year and half of "sporadic" attendance.  We keep in touch with the school when the panic attacks happen and we even have some accommodations in place for her.  Like she gets extra time on assignments, she can sit by a support friend.  she can leave class if she is getting to overwhelmed and sit in the counselors offices for a bit or the rest of the period.

I think its great that the school has come to you to help try and sort things out.  It sounds like they are very supportive.  Give your daughter some ideas of accommodations the school is willing to do for her.  I think sometimes its hard for our kids to voice what they need and what is actually wrong.  I am wondering if she would be willing to see a therapist and get some ideas how to better handle the anxiety.



Re: My 15 year old daughter

Hi @Maria,


What are your thoughts about some of the suggestions @sunflowermom has given? 


Would love to hear how you are going today- I can imagine this experience must be so stressful for you as a parent. I can see from your post that you have been working so hard to help your daughter feel more comfortable going to school Heart 


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Prolific scribe

Re: My 15 year old daughter

Hi there @Maria

I dont have a solution for you but I do know exactly how you feel. My son has been going through what your daughter is going through. My son has had problems with going to school. He gets very anxious around people but he wasnt always like this..only since about age 13. He wants to finish his fi al year next year but hates having to go to school. Like your daughter.  Its hard for us as parents to see our kids like this isnt it? How is your daughters mood when she is at home? Is she happier at home? Does she talk to you about how she feels? It helps if they can be open..sometimes I wish my son would be able to accept that he has anxiety but he says he doesnt. My son has missed a lot of school days..the school isnt happy with his attendance but he has managed to get good marks in all but one subject. I allow him time off school as long as he manages to do all his tests and assignments..I understand school is exhausting and I would rather compromise than watch him drop out. Would your daughter be willing to tell you why she doesnt want to go? Perhaps if you say that you think she might have some anxiety issues and see what she says. Maybe ask her if the workload is overwhelming..can she change some subjects? Most importantly, try to show her understanding and patience.  I dont have an exact answer for you..teenagers can be hard to understand thats for sure. I hope you let us know how you go..hang in there she will come through just fine...please keep in touch.



Re: My 15 year old daughter

Thanks for taking the time to write that advice out @hippychick, it sounds like this post hits close to home for you. It is amazing that you have found a way to manage all of this. I also had to edit your name out of your post as ReachOut is anonymous. I also removed your first post which appeared to be a duplicate.

Re: My 15 year old daughter



I too have gone thru this with my daughter.  We first moved to California from Nebraska (where my daughter attended the same school from 1st thru 5th grade).  Everyone loved her, she had friends, she was an excellent reader and writer.  She never wanted to miss school.

Then her father had (another) episode and up and left after being together for 20 years and being with both our children their entire life.

That's when we moved out here to California.  

So, I enrolled her (at the time she was going into 6th grade.  That didn't last long.  I actually ended up stepping down from my position of Assistant Manager that I'd been for almost 4 years due to getting calls from the school because of a bullying situation that I knew nothing about.  I tried other things but decided I needed to find other work that would allow me to be home with her more so that I could accommodate her needs.

So, I did (which I hated doing), but long story short, we tried homeschooling and I did everything I could to get through that.  But it left her and me here at the house without the social part of a school, and that didn't go so well.  She got to where she just wouldn't do the work.  So, after the summer break, I got an interdistrict transfer and we tried a different school.  Well, she liked the school, and was doing good, but 2 weeks into this new school, a fluke thing happened.  In the morning and right when the bell rang, a boy, just out of the blue called her name and caught her off guard handing her something.  Well, that something turned out to be a knife (and we still don't know why he did this), however,he sped off to get to his class, and she had a knife in her hand, and what she should've done at that point (she knows now) is go into the office to turn the knife in.  However, she was caught off guard and ended up putting it in her backpack (said she would locate him after class or at some point and return the knife), but before this happened, she mentioned what had happened to another girl in class, and the girl ended up unzipping the little compartment on my daughters backpack (it was on the floor and she had walked over to talk with another classmate).  This girl took the knife out and actually brandished it at another student.  I received a call, and they were suspending my daughter and you can imagine my surprise when I was told why.

We ended up beating the case, (shemade a wrong decision by not turning the knife into the office, so she has a "possession" charge on her record) however, they suspended her, then extended it as they were going to expell her because the other girl lied and said my daughter had brandished this knife).  She did not, and with testimonies from other children, proved our case, so "we won" if that's what you want to call it.  With the suspension and the extension, they made her miss a total of 22 days of not going to school, not allowed on school grounds, etc.

And when she was allowed to return, she did the best ever.  All of her work was 100% and having A's on the actual work, but it was a failure waiting to happen, because she could never get caught up from what she missed while on this suspension.  8 classes times 22 days, even if she only had one assignment per class overdue (which she didn't) it was almost impossible, so she returned and was doing the best ever, but because she was on an interdistrict transfer, e then received a notice that they were revoking it due to her missing assignments and poor overall grade due to this entire situation, even though every one of her assignments that were turned in after returning was 100%'s A's.

I couldn't believe this.  This was only two weeks in this school.  Well, you can imagine what this did.

So, basically by now, she had done no 6th grade, and here in California, they put children in the grades according to their age.  Doesn't matter if they failed the previous year.  and this last school was her 7th-grade year.

Bottom line, the remainder of that year was spent with me looking and calling around trying to locate a school that would take her, however, with this weapon charge on her record now, that wasn't easy, on top of that trying to find employment for me at the same time due to me resigning from the original position.

So basically now, no 6th or 7th grade, and then comes 8th grade, and she has changed due to having more time, and then the social media and phone thing and her maturing, etc, so I discovered Independent Study, and told her no one can make her go to this school.  She goes because she wants to, and she can do it her way, etc.  She agreed.

But now, I've just been dealing with, (after going thru all of this to find something that will work for her) we get the computer needed to do her assignments, but seems that she either watches videos on it, or looks things up, etc but not doing schoolwork.

Then she had access to a card (my mother did this) to where she can order a Lyft driver to take her places and guess what?  Now it seems like my awesome little girl is now a grown up (she thinks) and can do pretty much what she wants, and came in for 2 days in a row now, and I've discovered that she now has a tattoo.

Go me.

She is now also at a point where she has gotten quiet, staying in her room, until she's ready to go somewhere and come to tell me she's leaving.

I'm not a great disciplinary person, and when I do discipline, I do it trying to be productive, as in writing assignments, etc. (when they were growing up).

So, now, I feel like I've been robbed of some very important years with my daughter, and with me having to look for employment and dealing with this school situation, on top of recovering and being in survival mode from her father and moving, etc etc, being the sole responsible one, I have lost the closeness we once had and I feel her slipping away.  She is 14 and will turn 15 in January.  I don't want us to be like this and I never imagined her not getting her education and attending school like what has happened.

I love her to death and want to help her, but want to pull out of this whole ordeal and make changes to have a healthier relationship, but also for her to keep a mindset for wanting to finish school.

Thanks for letting me get that out there.




Re: My 15 year old daughter

Hey there @heartache12 

It sounds like things are really tricky with your daughter and it has been quite a full on journey with her! I have sent you a few emails as there was some miscommunication. Thanks for being so understanding.


Re: My 15 year old daughter

Hi @heartache12, it sounds like both you and your daughter have had a tough go Smiley Sad From what you've said, it seems like everything was starting to get on track until your daughter's behaviour changed? It appears as though you are noticing the distance between you.. and the fact that she is seemingly doing what she wants.. is that right? Have you ever thought about talking to a professional about this? This age can be a difficult period for adolescence where they are trying to find themselves and individualise. You both have been through so much and I can only imagine how stressful and tiring it must have been. You mention not being a very disciplinary person, are you struggling to know how to best handle this situation with your daughter? Please keep us updated and thanks for sharing Heart Once again, sorry for the miscommunication in the emails. If you do have any questions, you can reach us on that email.
Parent/Carer Community Champion

Re: My 15 year old daughter

Dear @heartache12 

I a so sorry your going through all this.  I totally understand how you feel when you say good years have been robbed from you.  My daughter started a downward spiral at about 14.  we have gone through almost every gamut of issue.  Self harm, hospitalizations, refusal of school, depression anxiety, pot use, risky sexual you name it..we've been there.

I also knows what it feels like to be a parent that questions my discipline.

You just gotta keep trying new things and do your best to keep the communication open.  I bend on the less important things and above all I remind myself this is her journey.  Not what I expected or hoped for of course....but none the less its her story and it will make her stronger.  I focus on the good I see in her more.  like she is stubborn and smart and can do anything she puts her mind to.

My daughter eventually went back to school after a year and a half.  she is 16 now. Getting license and part time job...more standard teen stuff.  We honestly went through 2 years of hell.  But eventually it calms down. eventually

I just want to offer you hope.  Hang in there.

PS:  my daughter just gave herself a  tattoo on her wrist with her boyfriends name ….OMG! insert cringe here


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