J.S. asks from Brunswick, OH on March 29, 2008
Teenage Daughter and Her Father's Relationship
I need sugestions as to what to do about my 16 year old daughter and her father's relationship.My husband is an awsome father, but can be a little strict at times when it comes to my oldest.She is a very bright and good girl. She doesn't go out a whole lot, and when she does, we know what's going on. My problem is, they are both very hard headed and fight all the time!I get involved, and my husband sees it as a threat.I know his intentions are good, but she's getting older, and I'd hate if they went on like this into adulthood!!!Help!!
1 mom found this helpful
So What Happened?™
I haven't tried anything yet.But I did want to thank everyone for their answers.I will be trying everything!!!
K.W. answers from Terre Haute on March 31, 2008
P.B. answers from Indianapolis on March 30, 2008
I almost wanted to say, you had me at hello, err 16! Hehe. But anyways, I think their relationship will be fine. In reality, I honestly think that when she looks back she will be thankful that her father cared so much about her. Especially in a society where fathers aren’t always in the picture.
I think it is important for couples with children, to talk with each other about their parenting styles and agree on punishments before the problem or action occurs. And make this clear cut for your kids too. So they know what will happen if they for example don't call you and let you know where they are, the punishment will be this:(insert punishment here) Then, the rules are defined.
Communication is key; when dealing with children of any age. If they know what will happen if they break the rules, then they are less like to be a long blow up arguments, and deciding a punishment, after the fact, can lead, (especially teenagers) to view you as being unfair.
So I guess what I’m saying is if they know what will happen, you can discourage them from poor behavior. Also then your husband wont think your steping on his toes because you would have already agreed.
Take care and good luck :)
R.J. answers from Cleveland on March 31, 2008
The first thing I would make sure of is that you don't let this situation come between you and your husband. I had the same problem with my 16 yr. old son and husband, though we are now at the point where we both have finally agreed to the same rules, (hubby and I).
Sitting down with hubby, alone, and having a good long talk should really help you both. It's good to be on the "same side" with your spouse. And It's really not easy because someone usually has to compromise. I'm not sure, but I think you are asking for help in him letting her have more freedom to go out and do things with her friends, correct?
If I am right, here are my suggestions. If she has a cell phone, (and she should in my opinion because she IS at the age where she could be doing things), she can check in with you at the times that you and your husband set. We had our now 27 yr. old son call us when he got to his friends house, call when he left that friends to go to another friends, and call again when he got there. He hated it, said no other parents made their kids check in like that and on and on.
But my husband and I felt that the only way we could let him go and hang out, going from one place to another, without US going crazy, was to have him call so we knew he was safe. We know the statistics of teens and cars, but we also knew we had to let him go and have fun! If they haven't learned right from wrong by 16, then they never will. Plus, you have to learn to trust them.
My husband always has said," give the kids enough rope to prove themselves, and if they mess up, reel it in and now they
have to figure out what to do to earn our trust again". It has worked with our first son, and is working with our almost 17 yr. old now.
It took me awhile to let go, I have to say. Personal experience had me wanting to keep them home, and let the other kids come here. But I know that we taught our kids to be careful, respectful, and make smart choices. There comes a time when you need to let them go and show you what they learned.
Hope this lengthy advice helps you and your family out!
M.G. answers from Toledo on March 30, 2008
Hello J.: I have a special daughter named Jackie and she's 16 - and I have 5 other children. The blessing is.....and you must remember this, that being strict is keeping her in line and that's why she's a good girl. Make sure that she sees you being appreciative to your husband . I know that it's hard now, but don't be divided on this. She's only getting those wings prepared to fly and really, ultimately, it's preparing your husband for her flight, know what I mean? You need to let up on the fighting and remember that this is only a phase. Try to take more walks and pray more - trust God, He's in control, right? Leave it with Him. You can't go wrong there!! When she becomes an adult, she can do what she wants, and dad will have little say, unless she's living with you. It'll turn out great!
Have a blessed day!
N.R. answers from Elkhart on March 31, 2008
Maybe don't get in the middle of the fight but, talk privately with your husband about it later. Ask why he is taking such a hard line about the problem they are having. Let him know you love him and you love your daughter and you just want to help keep their relationship strong. Remind him that she is a good kid and that you need to try and trust her to make the right choices. I wish you luck.(this is the one thing I am not looking forward to, teenage years)
P.R. answers from Indianapolis on April 02, 2008
Have you sat down with your husband and explained your concerns? Just the two of you?? If not you need to do it and quickly. Point out rules and regulations are fine and need to be established but there is a point in time where we have to loosen the strings and pick a battle. If he does not keep to the exact same pattern with the younger child there are going to be some serious resentments built up and they will last for the entire relationship of your children.
Family counciling may not be a bad idea. Some churches provide it and all family social service locations provide it as well. Just a suggestion.
J.C. answers from Fort Wayne on March 29, 2008
I strongly encourage parents to spend one on one time with their kids, starting at a young age. It will create an underlying bond. It can start at any age though. Remember, she's a teenager, they LOVE to fight with their parents! But, if their relationship is what's worrying you, set up times when each of you can take the two older girls out alone. You can do anything from taking them out to lunch, to just going to the library. Anything to connect with them on a personal level. If they can develop a connection when it's just the two of them, it will probably flow into their everyday relationship as well.
P.A. answers from Cincinnati on March 30, 2008
When you say you "get involved" do you mean during the argument between, dd and dh? I would suggest that AFTER they have finished and you and dh are alone, that you speak with him about how he handled something. My husband is also VERY strick and the dd and dh butt heads alomst daily. I do not defend her anymore when they are "at it" but once it is over, and dh and I are alone, we discuss. Sometimes he will agree he was too hard, or too mean, or whatever and then when dd gets home from school that day, he will sit her down and tell her he was too hard and that they should come to a compromise.
I think one of the hardest things about raising kids is parents forming an alliance, instead of a stand off between them. keep trying to mediate, but let your husband know you support HIM. He is only being concerned for your daughters welfare (and rightly so, in today's world) so be sure to let him know that you want what's best for her too.
Good luck and keep us informed on how things turn out.
K.W. answers from Terre Haute on March 31, 2008
I have no NOW advice, but my father and I were (and still are) very hard headed. It took me moving out of the house and a divorce (mine) for us to be "daddy/daughter" again. I was 23.
Sorry for the lack of help, I just wanted you to know that it will get better :)