23 answers

17 Year Old's Hair

My 17, 18 in October, year old walked in. I had one of the biggest fights with her! She jsut casually came through, and she has shaved her long hair on one side, like a mohawk laying down! I am so mad I could spit!
On top of that, I found out her ears are stretched. To an inch! I dont even know how I never saw it!
I am not her mother, but I feel she should respect me! (Her mother passed when she was 11, I'm her grandmother)
I know her ears are passed healing, and I am not paying to have them fixed!
She has always been in the whole punk thing, she pierced her lip by herself when she was 16 (Forced to take out), and I found out a few months ago her nipples are pierced as well!
I honestly want to kick her out, but it won't do any good because she has places to go, shes very sweet, and her best friend's parents think I am some beast because I don't approve of her decisions, like her clothes and her boyfriend.
I dont know what to do about her hair, its nearly bald, and as for the "plugs" as she called them, I made her take them out and they smell horrid!
Does anyone have experience with this sort of thing?

1 mom found this helpful

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

Update: With the plugs thing, I asked her why they smell bad, and she said all plugs do once you get past double zero (I guess thats a size) they smell, and she let me sniff her metal ones and they dont smell. SHe said its only because she had silicone ones in. I'm also frustraited because she seems to not understand why I'm mad!
Update#2: She is having sex, but that was an issue last year. At this point, her and her boyfriend will have been together for 5 years right before her birthday. I fought her at first, but its a battle I know I have lost. Teenagers are teenagers, shes found her ways.
Update#3: She has piercings because she works as an appretice at a tattoo parlor. I am very offended that you would think she somehow else aquired money. I was okay with her working there till I noticed her nipples were pierced, I know none of the others workers did it, and am shocked she did it on her own!

Featured Answers

I'm going to agree with all the posters so far. I'm a mother to a stepdaughter (she's now 26) who had every color and style of hair under the sun, including shaved off. Everytime it was different, I told her "you still look beautiful" because she did and it was just hair. It will grow back. This is the age to explore. My SD also has several piercings, most aren't visible while clothed... It's her body, I don't have to agree about piercings (although I have a naval piercing that I love). Clothes matter not one bit, as long as the important parts are covered, mostly, in public.

What matters is school, life plans, being in respectful non-abusive relationships, birth control, and finding out who she is and what she wants to be in life with the support of her family (you). Please love her and support her, or she will walk away from you.

8 moms found this helpful

I think you should let her be who she wants to be. She is finding out who she is. It's a phase. It will pass sooner or even later. She is growing up. If her attitude is still okay then I would not worry so much about how she dresses or what she does with her hair.

6 moms found this helpful

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I'm going to agree with all the posters so far. I'm a mother to a stepdaughter (she's now 26) who had every color and style of hair under the sun, including shaved off. Everytime it was different, I told her "you still look beautiful" because she did and it was just hair. It will grow back. This is the age to explore. My SD also has several piercings, most aren't visible while clothed... It's her body, I don't have to agree about piercings (although I have a naval piercing that I love). Clothes matter not one bit, as long as the important parts are covered, mostly, in public.

What matters is school, life plans, being in respectful non-abusive relationships, birth control, and finding out who she is and what she wants to be in life with the support of her family (you). Please love her and support her, or she will walk away from you.

8 moms found this helpful

I don't really understand why you are mad either.
Does she do drugs? Is she having sex with a bunch of people? Does she drink and drive? Does she drink at all? Is she disrespectful?
I am a child of the 80's. The makeup was ridiculous, the earrings all the way up the ear, the HUGE hair...we made it. I am sure that back in the day parents were mad at their children for listening to Elvis, for the no-bra time, for tight pants, mini skirts...the list goes on and on.
If your granddaughter is just trying out different styles than I don't see how that is disrespectful to you. It's her body, her choices..IF she ever starts snorting or shooting up drugs THEN you should freak out!
L.

7 moms found this helpful

I think you should let her be who she wants to be. She is finding out who she is. It's a phase. It will pass sooner or even later. She is growing up. If her attitude is still okay then I would not worry so much about how she dresses or what she does with her hair.

6 moms found this helpful

Hair grows. She only has so many years she can rebel like this if she wants a good job someday, so it will have to end.

(My sister had every color of hair in the rainbow, spiked it, and had 36 holes in her head all the while getting straight A's and being the leader in our church's punk band... she now had an undergrad degree in Bio-medical Engineering and has told me that her time looking like a rebel has made it so she can handle the stress and pressure of her job better than her classmates do. I will say that I think you are at fault because you have proven to her that you do not trust her and as you say she is a "good kid" that into "punk" yet you will not let her express herself.)

6 moms found this helpful

She is just finding who she is! I had multi-rainbow colored hair and I once even tried to pierce my own belly button. Did I do it out of disrespect of my parents? No... I did it because I wanted to. My mom and I fought some over it, but eventually she and I compromised...I could color my hair and style it however I wanted, but for school photos it had to be a "natural color" - and I was allowed to do whatever I wanted piercing and tattoo-wise as soon as I was 18 and she promised she would bite her tongue, but until then she asked that I not do anything without her permission. I agreed, and quit doing stupid things like trying to pierce my own bellybutton. Knowing that my mom was going to let me be me meant the WORLD to me, even if I had to wait until I was 18.

At 18 it will be her legal right to do what she wants anyways.

So at 23 I have a total of 6 ear piercings... but I only use up to 4 at a time, in fact I think my 5th and 6th piercing are probably closed up. I have 1 tattoo (my daughter's initials) and no body piercings. My hair is brown, my natural hair color. What is more important is that I am now a really happy mother and I would consider myself a happy, fulfilled and useful adult. I am a good person, and a part of that came from exploring who I was as a teen.

As far as the clothes thing... you can only wear exactly what you want, when you want for a limited number of years in your life. I was very "goth" in school... lots of black and red. My parents didn't "approve" of most of my boyfriends either... but the only way you can learn about relationships is to make a few mistakes, and maybe even get hurt. If not now, she will make mistakes when she is in college, and you won't be there to help her through it all then. At 17 she is just a baby step away from being thrown into the adult world... and you can either help her to become an adult at this point, or fight her until the day she leaves. If she is "sweet" and otherwise well behaved... why not encourage her to become the BEST adult she can be by letting her have freedoms and responsibilities that will get her ready to be a real adult. When she feels you are "respecting her" as a person, she will probably try to be more understanding and respectful of you and your feelings about her decisions in return!

Good Luck!
-M.

6 moms found this helpful

Gotta go with the flow.... the kids today are just WEIRD, look back at your highschool yearbook and you will find you were probably weird too yet survived. Love her for who she is, that's all she really wants.

5 moms found this helpful

My cousin was dating this girl that was rude, mean to him and terrible to his mom. My cousin had a bad accident and broke his back, this girl did nothing to support him. He finally became an alcoholic, and he confessed to me that he was just angry all the time. He finally got rid of that girl. He started dating another one who was younger, had a full back tattoo, piercings and a mohawk. She was also sweet, devoted and kind. They are now married, they have two beautiful children, he has recovered from his alcoholisim, pretty much all thanks to this girl. She doesn't do it out of disrespect, she does it because she can. I know this is hard, and you worry about what her doing to her body now will effect her future. She may respond a whole let better if instead of getting angry with her, you sit down and tell her why you are upset. She may roll her eyes and say, "Oh grandma whatever!" but she might also surprise you...

4 moms found this helpful

She is 17.

Now, talking about myself, when I was that age and older:
I was a Punk Rocker. Wore safety pins, had a Mohawk and my hair was shaved on the sides, I had dyed hair of colors!, I had dark almost black lipstick and nailpolish, I also have a Tattoo. Oh and I had multiple ear piercings, which I did, MYSELF In my room, then showed my parents right after! They did not flinch. As long as I kept it clean and did not get an infection, that is what mattered to them. (I have as an adult, let many of the ear holes close).

Now, my parents, KNOW me, and they never flinched. Because, they knew I was an individual, smart, and was well grounded in my values. But I had alternative tastes, and still to this day, have an edgy rebel take on life. But my parents, TRUSTED me and WHO I was. They knew I was not a stupid idiot just trying to make a scene. I was not all talk and no show.

I went to college, got multi-degrees and had straight A's.
I am now a Mom of 2 kids. Who I am proud of.

I had my share of dating before getting married. I was, aware enough to get all my yah-yah's out and clubbing, before I settled down. I, lived. I had my phases and partying. But I was always, very cognizant of myself and the environments and friends, I had. I chose, my friends. I was not a follower.

So, in a nutshell. How I passed through life and what I looked like and what I did... had nothing to do with 'who' I was superficially.
My parents, knew that.
They never not once, told me how to dress or how to look. They NEVER even were embarrassed nor self-conscious nor apologetic to other people or relatives, when I was around them or with them or at family functions.

So, that was me. And this is me.
It was not, a prediction of what I was nor who I was.

As one MamaPedia Mom said to me in a post- Never judge a person's insides, by their outsides.

Now- ear plugs should NOT stink. It is probably infected. She best take care of that, before her ear gets major, infected.

all the best,
Susan

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