Just Turned 13 in January

Updated on February 18, 2008
S.U. asks from Houston, TX
38 answers

My daughter just turned 13 in January and has decided she does,nt have to do anything she is told. Anyone ever dealt with this if so how did you fix it?

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So What Happened?

I took ipod nano away the day i wrote this she had just got it for her birthday. Boy she would do anything she was told to do for about two days. At this time her dad is taking her cell phone to work with him so she cant use it. I have always taken her things away when she would not listen but this was once every 6 months before she turned 13 now she just does not care about nothing . She just says oh well. We are still working on this not sure what to do at htis point she has almost nothing left to take away and she just does'nt care. She has even had a spanking and it did'nt change anything at all. All she has to do is keep her room clean it is HER ROOM NOT MINE, wash her clothes which she has been doing this since she was about 7, and load the dishwasher after dinner. I do have 2 other children and Dessi is 8 and she has to pick up her stuff around the room and do the bathroom which is THERE bathroom not mine, And Clayton is 9 he has to keep his room clean, the hallway and take out the trash. Do i ask to much of my kids i think they live here also so i should not have to do it all.

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M.H.

answers from El Paso on

My Triplets are in the same stage and I just told them the road goes both ways.They don't want to do what they told well I don't have to do what they want like driving them to the movies ect.
Try it with my kids it's working most of the time, I need to remind them about that road every couple of days but hey we working on it.

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C.B.

answers from Beaumont on

Anyone who has a teenager has been there also!!! Don't be afraid to take away her phone, Tv and computer (basically all contact w/friends except school) and then see if she is willing to listen to you. I have an 18 year old and a 16 year old (and also a 10 year old) all girls so I have been there. You have to establish that they still have rules and boundaries and punishments when the rules/boundaries are not followed NOW or it will only get worse. When my oldest hit 13 it was like an alien took over her body/behavior and I just wanted my sweet little girl back!!! It passes though so hang in there!!!

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G.M.

answers from Houston on

Hav'e you tried tit-for-tat? I.e.: if she doesn't have to do anything she is asked to do (I find that with people of any age 'asking' them gets a better reaction than if it is presented as "i'm telling you, you have to do it"), then the rest of the family doesn't have to do anything she asks for either. Or to put it another way: if she wants respect she needs to show respect.

good luck.

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M.K.

answers from Houston on

Always be the loving parent and be consistant. For every action there is a reaction. Your daughter gets to choose her behavior and if she behaves positive she will be enjoying her teen years with her friends and activities or negative behavior results she will suffer negative consequences of HER behavior that SHE chooses. Love has boundaries and she will thank you for it later. It will teach her to respect others and not settle for others disrespecting her.

M. K

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S.B.

answers from Waco on

I like to call the teen years the negotiating years because so many of them think everything is up for negotiation. Very much like the terrible twos, the transition into the teenage years can have some friction between parent and child. Do you remember those times when she was a toddler and wanted to do everything herself? It was a power struggle for more independence. Teens go through the same transition only they are more verbal and are seeking that complete separation that results in adulthood. Understanding that can put some perspective on what is happening. Of course she is just beginning that transition to adulthood and still needs the consistent guidance of caring parents. Let her know that while she may begin to feel more grown up and want to be more independent, she is still young. As she matures and demonstrates that she is thinking and acting in a responsible manner, you can re-evaluate how much independence she is allowed. By refusing to listen at home and obey her parents she is demonstrating to you that she is just not ready for more independence. Should this sort of behavior continue you will just have to assume she isn't ready for the liberties girls of her age usually have and as she gets older new freedoms won't come. Remind her that in only a few more years she may want to be getting a driver's license or an after school job. The way she responds to you is how you are going to gauge whether she is ready for those privileges. Also, for the short term, all behaviors have a consequence. When we listen and do well we are rewarded with more privileges or incentives. When we decide that we don't have to do what we are told or listen to those in authority over us there are bad consequences. That is just life, not a condition of childhood. Try not listening to a boss at work or a teacher at school. The employee will get fired and the student will be disciplined for their conduct. It should be no different at home. Consequences should be very clear. If you tell her to clean her room and she refuses, let her know what will happen if she doesn't do it. Then if she still refuses, do exactly what you told her the consequence would be. Consistency is key for this to work. If she begs for a second chance, tell her she will get one the next time she needs to clean her room. I like for consequences to be related to the behavior. Not cleaning a bedroom may result in the removal of items that are most prized or fun such as a stereo, TV or phone. Also, teens are very sensitive to their social status. Taking away items that make them more "important" to their friends such as cell phones or trendy clothes and an allowance are the first to hit a nerve. If she is involved in school sports or other extra-curricular activities let her know those are optional and you can keep her from these too. It is ultimately in her control to listen and obey or not. The choice is up to her but if she knows her own actions are going to effect the quality of her life, she'll figure out listening is the better choice. I hope you are able to get through to her and soon you will have less friction through these teen years and you will have a daughter who does what she is told because that is the choice she has made.

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K.T.

answers from Houston on

I feel your pain. I have 16 year old twins and I have found that when I say what I mean and mean what I say that things really calmed down. Make sure you have consequences, that everyone knows what they are, and stick to your guns in discipline even though at times, just giving in is less trouble. If dad is in the picture, you have to maintain a solid front on this so that the kids know you or he can't be manipulated. They need boundaries, especially at this age. They are getting independent and will see how far they can push you. Stand your ground, Mama!

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M.M.

answers from Houston on

I have three step-kids who moved in with me and their dad at ages 10, 12 & 14. The two girls are now 17 & 19 and one boy 21. I really had trouble with the 17 year old once she hit about 12. I found that taking away privileges and extra chores helped a lot. Another thing that worked was putting them in corners. I know you wouldn't normally think to put a teen in the corner but it is surprisingly effective. When they say "I'm not a little kid", you can simply tell them that they won't be treated as such once they stop acting like one. My 19 yr old who is now married with a 6 month old son of her own has told me that was probably the most effective punishment for her. By the way, I never raise my voice to them. Not even when they are yelling at me. I was able to keep their attention better when I spoke softer than my normal speaking voice. It makes them have to be quite to hear what I am saying. I hope this helps!

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J.F.

answers from El Paso on

Here is an idea we have used from Dr. Laura. I have 14 and 15 yr. old girls and a 3 yr old boy. A few years ago one of our daughters wasn't listening well and doing her chores, etc so after taking her favorite items out of her room (radio, games, books) my husband took her entire door off her room for a couple of days and it worked...we haven't had to do that again, but will always remain an option. Dr. Laura actually suggested doing that and if necessary taking EVERYTHING out of their room except the bed and a few clothes.

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K.L.

answers from San Antonio on

I know this sounds harsh, but she needs to remember that everything that she has is a privilage. I have a 14 yr old daughter and one turning 13 in March. My oldest decided that she didn't have to do anything or respect others in the house. She no longer slams her bedroom door. She had it removed for 3 weeks until she realized that privacy is earned. The stereo, computer, phone, friends...everything removed until earned. It worked. I am not saying that she doesn't act her age, but she remembers that Mom and Dad do have the authority in our home and she will respect that. After all, she didn't work for any of the items that she has. these were given to her and they can be taken away.

Kimberly L.

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S.D.

answers from Houston on

Take everything she loves away...and then ask her "Can you hear me now?".....

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J.G.

answers from San Antonio on

I dont have a 13 yr old, but she sounds just like me. I cant tell you really how to fix it, but i can tell you the more they told me no and took things away from me the worse i got. I even used to sneek out my window, fight, alot of other things that im really not proud of. But i was a very rebelious teenager. Do you guys have an open line of communication?? Or maybe just you and her could go somewhere just a girls day out so you can talk and maybe get down to the problem, and hopefully you guys can keep it up once a week, or so, that way maybe instead of acting out she will just tell you what is bothering her, remember she might not open up right away but just be paitent she will eventually. That is something that i wish my mom did with me but i guess she never had the time (i was the oldest of 4), but i think that it would have helped. I hope this helps you, and good luck through this trying times.

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L.F.

answers from Longview on

I do not have a 13 year old, but I have an 11 year old step daughter that thinks the same thing. We ground her to her bedroom, no tv, no ipod, no nintendo ds, no telephone. If they do not want to step up to the plate and do what they are told and handle their responsibilities, then you take away everything that she truly loves and enjoys, then she will know that you are serious.

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M.R.

answers from San Antonio on

I offered to help her with all her school projects and gave her special attention and treated her extra special in front of her friends. I felt like I had lost my little girl. I took her to breakfast or lunch by ourselves once a week and I would take a small gift. I started to reward her with her favorite music CD's. We did her chores together sometimes and she always had some type of reward. Small gifts pay off big results. Give her praise every chance you can; turn every negative into a positive. Tell her: " this isn't like you"; let me help you. Ask her for her help so that she feels needed and not that she is a slave to your demands. My daughter is now 23 years old and is "very grateful for the love I showed her and how I helped her back up every time she fell". She recently wrote that to me in a note. Yes, I also grounded her and took away her TV priviledges. But always followed with a kind word. I told her I loved her everyday. I was a single parent. It's tough sometimes, hang in there.
If you attend church; find a youth group for her. If she won't go; you could try going yourself; you need support right now too.

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K.M.

answers from Killeen on

I agree with the others that keeping lines of communication open is important, but she does not get to be the adult decision maker in your house hold. My big question is...what are her responsibilities? Is she responsible for cleaning her room?doing laundry? Washing dishes? Cleaning her bathroom? Making at least 1 meal a week? These are important skills for her to learn now so she can be independent after high school and/or in college. Helping her learn that there is both positive and negative consequences to her actions at this point is important so that she is not out of control by 15.
good luck!

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A.K.

answers from Odessa on

I recently read a book 'The Parent Teen Breakthrough' by Mira Kirshenbaum. It gave me some good ideas and some great insight. I've just begun to use the techniques but I like the concept and feel good about it's potential. Maybe it will help you too. Good luck!!

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D.A.

answers from Houston on

Talk with her when you are both not stressed. Decide together on what is reasonable for her to do and what you expect. Write it down - draw up a contract, with rewards for doing what she's supposed to and consequences if she doesn't. Sure, they have all these hormonal issues, but that doesn't mean she isn't part of the family and can do whatever she wants.

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D.C.

answers from Houston on

Thats easy, YOU STOP! Stop giving her money, stop washing her clothes, cleaning after her, taking her places, until she learns it's a two way street. Everyone has to do their part to make a family work. While she is geting the message spend more time on you and let her know you are enjoying yourself!! That will really get to her. Take yourself and who ever else you choose out to dinner, but not her..... She will get the message. You can do it in a loving way too. Without being ugly. She will see how much she still needs to be a working part of your family!!!! Good luck, with teen girls you have to be on your toes! One step a head of their calculating brains. For some reason they think they are all grown up already! The sad thing is I remember being the same way at thirteen and I'm fifty now!

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C.P.

answers from Odessa on

S., I am in the same boat! Even though my two oldest are teenagers, 15 and 13, they think that they are too kewl to do their chores. WHat I do is if they want to do something fun or need money, etc, then they have to:first to their normal everyday chores. They are a part of the family like everyone else is and are responsible for cleaning up after their selves! Anything past or above the call of duty, then that is when "brownie points" kick in. Stay hooked into other moms who are going thru the same thing because you need the encouragement. Even sometime when noone really has an answer, just venting to someone who understands helps. Hang in there! U can make it through this (so can I!)

C. p

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S.C.

answers from Beaumont on

Take charge your are the mom. I started telling my now 14 yr. old at 11. "Yes you are an individual and do have some rights as an individual, but you don't get to make all of your decisions until you're 18 and are out of my home, and providing for all your needs independently. I didn't make this clear with my now 17 yr old. She went completly out of control (drugs, sex, fights). By 15 she was out of my house. I couldn't allow that kind of thing around my younger kids, she is into her 2nd pregnancy(having lost the 1st), lives with her boyfriend, and I limit my contribution too her needs.
My point is watch her close, limit her freedom, set standards (to be pc-boundaries), and demand they be met, Start balancing her rewards with good or bad deeds.
GOOD LUCK-----We have a 24 yr. span of kids (stepkids that were grown when I met my husband) all raised in a different manner, so far we have yet to produce self sufficient adult. I belive a good level of honesty and
reality is how I'm approaching this child so far it is good. So far my biggest problem with my 14 yr. old is proper hygiene. That's an issue I believe will play out.
Good Luck

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S.T.

answers from Houston on

I am having the same problem with my 13 yrs old daughter... You can email me if you would like to discuss. [email protected]____.com

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A.R.

answers from Austin on

Oh sister have i ever!!!!! Listen you have to be the parent, not their friend. I learned the hard way. My 19 has a baby and at 13 was out of control. I have done things different with my now 9yr old. Rules and boundrys!!! If there broke, there is disipline. My pastor told our teen one sunday, kids it is so simiple, good choices good life, bad choices bad life. My 19 has reaped that, she now tells me "if i had only listened"! Also keep a very very close eye on who her friends are. I was shocked when my daughter came home in the 7th grade to tell me one of her friends was going to have a baby!! Be very watchful.
Just give her respect as far as her privacey goes, but let her know that is your house, your rules, but most of all let her know it is out of love. They begin to think were the enemey at that age. Stand frim, dont give in to her never, once you do they will walk all over you, if they can get away with doing it with you, they will start at school and else where. She is going through changes in her body and her brain is devolping too, does she like to read? There are tones of books for teens. Chicken soup for the teens soul, some really great christens ones too.
Good luck and i will pray for your strength.

P.B.

answers from San Antonio on

Hi S.,

As a mom of three kids (12, 13 and 16), I can understand your frustration. I would like to offer a few words from my PARENT COACH and Parent perspective.

My husband and I try to start with our kids from a perspective of "we love you no matter what". We add in ways to keep the lines of communication open. If you can get your daughter to talk about what is going on in her daily life, that is great. It may take a trip out for ice cream or some other special activity. Be sure to stop what you are doing when she seems to want to connect in any positive way and REALLY BE THERE for her.

Your daughter may not be aware of it, but she is dealing with the fears of growing up, the responsibilities that come with it, uncertainty about a lot that she once took for granted and the need to "define" who she is. WOW!!

If you can present the love and encouragement daily (when things are calm) and open up to really listen and connect, she will see that she is loved unconditionally and you care to hear of her ups and downs and will support her through this transition to adulthood.

So the first step might be to sit down and observe what you are seeing, state how you feel about it (she can't argue about what you are feeling) and develop an agreement for what you are all going to do about it. If she won't participate in the conversation, you will probably need to say "okay, then we will have to make this plan without your input" and do it.

It would be a great time to reiterate or establish several (not too many) firm house rules and consequences for breaking them. Remind her that she is EXPECTED to contribute as a member of your family, EXPECTED to interact respectfully and that you offer her many priveledges that she earns the right to based on her behavior and contributions.

Choose your battles wisely. Pick one negative behavior to work on at a time. Like some other parents, we give two chances with a warning and then the consequence. Observe and try to cut her some slack when the stress is particularly high. Know that she will stumble occasionally - that is how she learns. When she does, give a consequence if needed and ask her what she learned or what she will do differently next time.

Please let me know what you decide to do and how it works.

Good luck!
J. B
Parent Coach

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R.B.

answers from San Angelo on

Teenage girls can be hard to deal with if not approached in the right manner-I was a teenager not too long ago.
Are you TELLING her everything you want her to do, or do you try ASKING her? Sometimes teenagers respond better when they are asked to do something. If there are multiple things you want her to do, make it seem like she has a choice by asking her, for example, "Do you want to do your homework first, or would you rather do the dishes first?" This way it makes her feel as if she made the choice when she decides what to do.
I agree with some others that maybe some mother-daughter time would help. Maybe for a couple hours on a weekend you can go out together. ASK her if she needs to or wants to talk about anything. Try negotiating and compromising with her on things such as chores, curfews, etc.

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R.B.

answers from Houston on

S.,

I have a 12 yr old son and an 11 yr old daughter. Let me ask, is this your only child and/or is this the first one you are going thru this with? THAT IS NORMAL! My 11 yr old daughter has been doing that and so has my son. It drives me crazy!

Think back on how you were. This is the age that my problems started with my mom. All you can really do is maybe explain to her that you are the adult and she is the child. You will tell her 2x to do something and if on the 2nd time you tell her, ground her, by taking away things MOST important to her. When you have depleted all of those things, you strip her room down to nothing but a bed, and dresser. No tv, no radio, no cell phone NOTHING. Other than that hun, there's not much you can do.

Remember this is the puberty age and it is a very difficult time in their young lives. They are going to test boundaries etc.

Hope this helps.

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S.M.

answers from San Antonio on

Your daughter should understand that you don't have to do anything either -- cook her meals, wash her clothes, driver her to school, the mall, or a friends house; but you have to be firm and not do ANYTHING for her for several days. If you are married, your husband has to do the same -- NOTHING. I learned this in a class called "Systematic Training for Effective Parenting" (STEP) through my church when my children were young. It works!! Oh, and you don't have to buy her anything either -- deoderant, clothes, toothpaste. She will quickly learn that relationships are give and take, and you are her boss for now. Tell her that when she grows up and has to work for a living, it will be much worse than having to listen to her "stupid" parents.

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S.D.

answers from Houston on

Hi,

I have a 15 yr daughter & 13 & 14 were the "trying" years (so far).

The best advice & you must stick to it....is....Sticking To Your Word. You don't know how many times my daughter got into trouble & I grounded her - you must take away her possessions, cell phone, radio, cd's. When she get's into trouble - say "you know the drill" get all your electronics & put them on my bed. No computer as well, ground her for a few days then start going into weeks.

If you can do this & you must stick to it - take her friends away. I've gotten up earlier driven her to school (if I could have picked her up so she couldn't ride the bus w/her friends) I would have.

Now at 15 yrs old & being in 10th grade - she's has had a 180 - she's doing alot more around the house, listening & hasn't got into trouble at all....yes sometimes it is the people she is hanging with.

So hold on tight & keep your sanity - you're in for a bumpy ride but hold onto her because sometimes they really do not know what they're getting into.

Hope this helped.

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R.M.

answers from Houston on

I'm really liking alot of the responses you've had so far, so I'll try not to repeat them. Here is one thing that worked for my now 17 year old step son. At the time he was 13. His chore for the day was to mow the yard. He didn't want to do it. I reminded him that we needed his help in order for our household to run smoothly, and today mowing the yard was his contribution to the family. Once dinnertime came, he came to the table ready to eat. I looked at him and very kindly, with my voice lower than normal, said "I'm so sorry that you cannot eat dinner until your chores are done. The rules today are the same as they are every day---homework, chores, fun, dinner. You may eat as soon as the yard work is complete." He started to throw a 2year old-type tantrum, as teenagers are famous for, and I reminded him how things work. "We all contribute to the family, you included. You may fuss and complain and receive negative consequences for your actions, or you may respectfully tell me you don't like your chores and then do them anyway. Would you like negative consequences, or do you just want to let me know you don't like to mow the yard?" Somehow, this got his attention, maybe because I get eerily calm and I am very consistent in my discipline. He went to mow the yard. At dark, before he was finished, he came inside expecting to eat. Since the work was not done, he could not eat. He threw another fit. Once again, eerily calm, I reminded him of how things work. I explained that I absolutely HATE going to the grocery store. "Are you aware that I hate going to the grocery store? You're not? Would that be because I never complain about it, I just do it anyway? What I expect you to choose right now is to go outside and complete your work. When that is done, you may choose to eat dinner. If you choose to fuss and complain, then you will choose to not eat dinner at all tonight. I do my chores, whether I like them or not, so that they rest of the family may benefit. I go to the grocery store, even though I hate it, so that everyone in this family may eat, including you. If you want to benefit from my doing a chore that I hate to do, then you will do your chores even if you hate them. If you don't want to do your chores, then you will not benefit from my doing my chores. That means that you will be able to eat AFTER you go to the grocery store, buy your own food with your own money, bring the food home and fix it for yourself. So, do you want to contribute to the household?" (my husband was now home and backed me up. Since the whole situation started with me, we kept it w/ me for the remainder of this situation.) This worked. He never had a fit over doing chores again. He came close a few times, but I just reminded him of the "yard-mowing incident" as it came to be known. One thing that worked wonders with him....if he raised his voice to me, or became disrespectful in any way, which he loved to do, I simply told him to go away from me, into another room where I couldn't see or hear him. He could talk with me as long as he was respectful, and disagreeing respectfully was always allowed. But, he had to go away any time he was disrespectful. He totally hated being put away from the family, so this worked really well for him. Very often, he would calm down and be respectful immediately, and the rest of the time he would go away for 15 minutes or so and settle down. Then he would return and we would pick up where we left off. This may or may not work for your daughter---every child is different. One book I really like is "Boundaries with Children" by Drs. Cloud and Townsend. I would read parts of it over and over to reinforce it in my brain and keep me on track. It really helped our family alot.

One other thing and then I'm done, give your daughter 2 choices so that she has some control. If you choose to do #1, this is what will happen, if you choose #2, this is what will happen. Which do you choose? You can apply this to absolutely everything. Often, one is a positive action and a positive natural consequence, and the other choice is completely negative. YOU give the two options, and she chooses. She has some control, as she is looking for, but you ultimately retain control of the final outcomes. This worked like a dream w/ my stepson, and is working just as well with my 4 year old son. Toddlers and teenagers....very alike!!

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L.M.

answers from Austin on

S.. I'm so sorry. I've been there, gone through that.
There are a few talks you can try and hopefully it won't be a power struggle for long. They start to think they are adults at that age and the more they don't listen, the more their friends consider them cool and grown up. You will probably have to have many talks so try to make them a little different each time because each one will only last so long if at all. I'm sorry to sound so negative but I'm trying to be realistic. Try to make it an interactive talk instead of a speech. Teenagers seem to react better to that. If you can get them to agree with you then they seem to feel empowered. I used to rotate the "You're under 18 and I am still responsible for you.." speech and the "I only want what is best for you but do you?" and I also had a close friend of mine talk to her once and then when she turned 16 I had a police officer talk to her. Its a tough road but I hope yours isn't as tough as mine was.
I have a boy and a girl that are two years apart. Another option is the taking away the things they love. It worked with my daughter but not my son. Grounding is good but hard when you're not there. The biggest issue/loss with my daughter was losing phone priviledges. She didn't have a cell phone until she could afford one. I found that taking away things came after when she just wouldn't listen anymore with the talks because it can cause alot of animosity. Good luck.

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T.P.

answers from Houston on

Hi S. I am a mother of 5 and 4 of them are girls they are grown now but one of mine was a lot like your daughter that you are describing, my solutions was if she didn't do anything she was asked then I did not do things for her that she wanted done, wash her clothes take her places that were not essential, phone became off limits mine did not have a cell phone but my solution to that would have been to make it so only calls to and from parents were able to be used on her phone including text messages a friend of mine tried it and it worked great 13 year old girls do not like being out of touch with friends. At my house if they did not do what was expected of them I did not do what they expected of me, my problem was an all day everday problem since I home schooled all 5. to re assure you she came around after about 2 months when she realized I wasn't going to give in to her and she watched the others have the priviledges she did not and she is now 26 graduated with honors from Texas A&M and is a public relations director for a private christian school, there is hope. T.

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P.S.

answers from San Angelo on

Dear S.,

I have 5 children. The oldest 3 are girls 23, 18, and 14. I have vast teaching experience in this age group. Each young lady is different. My older 2 girls were a breeze during their teenage years and I counted it a blessing that they were not difficult and that they were obedient to our house rules.

Your daughter is at that very difficult, yet vastly important growth stage where she is turning into a woman. She is literally on drugs....naturally produced by her body. This is also the time that teens use to start the break away process from the nest, and starting to be their own person.

You can try discipline, take away privileges or allowance money. But, this can backfire and make her more resentful and withdrawn from you as the parent. Do you spend time talking with her on a daily basis? I ask because parents think that they talk to their kids, but are they "REALLY" listening to what their children are telling them? I have always had mother/daughter dates with my girls. I try to do it at least twice a month because that's all my budget will allow. This time away from the rest of the family is very important to my daughters. It makes them feel special and we can talk about many things (they pick the topic(s). On time restricted days, my daughters will take a short drive with me to buy groceries and talk about what's bothering them or they will stay up until everyone is asleep and ask to snuggle on the couch to talk.

My 14 yr old (bday Jan) is extremely difficult at best in all areas of life right now. One moment she loves me and the next, she hates me. When it's her menses time, life is horrible. I bought her pamprin and midol to help with cramps and bloating and this seems to help her physical pain.

Out of all of the teenagers that I have counseled, you are going to be the bad mom, mom. You are not fair, you never have time for her, etc. Don't let this head trip sway you from your goal...staying close to your daughter.

There could also be other things bothering her. How are her grades? Have they slipped? Kids at this age are just plain mean and hurtful. Could she be reacting at home to something that is happening at school? What about neighborhood friends? Many things happen to our children that they never tell us because they are afraid and they try to handle it on their own (ya know cause their like lil adults now right??!!).

Talk to your daughter, let her know that you love her unconditionally (you love her, but you do not like the things that she does) and that she is important to you. Give her a hug. Do little things each day to make her feel special. Hide an I luv u note in her math, science, english book or place have a good day note in her daily school planner. Type out a joke, print it, and put it in her backpack or purse where she will find it. If you are religious, you could type up several verses, clip them out, and place them in various places for her to find (like dresser drawers or under her pillow).

You've got a puzzle to solve and far to many pieces missing. So, start at the corners and work around the edges and as you do so, the middle pieces will come together. I have given you the best advice that I can and it is exactly what I would tell any client of mine.

Sincerely, been there and still there,

P.

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B.C.

answers from Beaumont on

Yeah, it's like a switch gets flipped and all of a sudden your once sweet little girl is possessed!!! My stepdaughter turned 13 in July and it's been hell every since. She was always "the good one" who never gave us any trouble. Being a stepmom has it's own set of challenges but she was my easy one - not any more. It has gotten a little better but the first few months were really rough. It took dad just being a bit firmer with her to get her to snap out of it a bit. Good luck!

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G.M.

answers from San Antonio on

I think it would be good idea if you made her feel like it is a necessity. My husband and I raised our neice and when she was a teeager, we made her feel like she was our "partner". She was incharge of stocking the diaper bags (so we could be on time to church or dinner or wherever we were going), feeding, bathing and walking the dog and folding towels. Those were her chores and we tried not to deviate. Now when it came to going out...she was allowed to go out and be home by 10 or 11 depending on where she was going. If she was late coming home we would act like we were devasted and worried sick (instead of mad). Teens don't react well to anger. Good luck.

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L.S.

answers from Salt Lake City on

How much time do you spend with your daughter each day? If your answer is not much, then that may be a way to solve the problem. When your daughter sees you as a friend, she will understand that you want the best for her. Don't just tell her what to do, but take the time to explain why. Also, if she can't go to her friend's house this weekend, why not next weekend. So, basically three suggestions:
-Make sure you're spending enough time with her
-Tell her why or why not she can or can't do something
-If she can't do something now, give her an alternative

Good Luck!

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S.W.

answers from Houston on

Yes S. -- I have dealt with this same problem except for with boys. I think that you could do the same thing as I did to get the point across to her that she is still the child and you are the parent. What I did everytime my son decided he did not have to do anything that I said. I started taking privileges away. Start with her favorite thing to do. Which is usually having friends over her house or she go over their house. After telling her that she can not do these things because she thinks that she is the parent and can do what she wants --- she will get the message quick and change her mind. She will hopefully learn that you are the parent and she is the child. You are only trying to keep her safe by give her jobs to do. Good Luck on raising your determined teenager. I have two teenage boys and since I first told them that they could not have friends over nor go over to their friends house until they learn that they are the children and I am the parent, They learned their lesson. They do not think they can do whatever they want -- they know that they have to do what me and my husband says to do before they can do anything with their friends. And let me tell you --- FRIENDS are very important to teenagers. If they lose their time with their friends, they learn their lesson quick.

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F.B.

answers from Houston on

Welcome to puberty!

If you don't get her under control now it's only going to get worst.

You might need to go into counseling to take control back.

Actually, your child has no control. You are in charge. If she does not like it, then don't be afraid to punish her. But if you say you are going to do something then follow through. If you don't you will create a monster.

Usually a teen-ager challenges authority. They want to know that they will be loved no matter how bad they act.

I suggest you read books or join a support group. Talk to the child's school counselor. There might actually be other things going on that you are unaware of.

Don't rule out drugs if her personality and behavior changed overnight.

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E.H.

answers from New London on

Of course she still needs to listen. Choices have concequences. There are some things that she simply must do, non-negotiable, as she is part of your family. If she does not want to listen, then she is "less part of the family." Clear her room of items you have purchased her (go light at first, then if she continues to not listen, remove more items until her room is a bed, with generic linens, and a few clothing items (her least favorite). She should not be allowed to attend social events as long as she behaves this way. She should be restricted from phone, tv, computer. She will get the idea that she will act appropriately, or bear the concequences. Make sure that both you and your husband are on the same page. Sit down with her, and make a list of items you expect her to do regularly, and as she begins to do these things, she can re-earn her items/priveleges. Talk with her calmly. If she begins to go in to her teen rage, stop the conversation, and tell her you wil continue this when she is acting like your daughter, and not a rabid animal. She will "hate you" at first, but in the end, she will respect and understand what you are doing. This too shall pass...

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K.C.

answers from Houston on

This is where tough love comes in give her nothing, let her have nothing, don't let her go anywhere. Tell her that is she wants to go somewhere she has to do what she is told at all tmes. My son is 11 and i'm going through that, he has cmpetition coming up and I told him he wasn't going because he didn't want to listen and do his chores. I even made him look like an idiot in front of his friends and pulled him out of practice and told him loud enough for his friends to here " you are ot aloud to come to practice till you learn to listen athome and do your chores". Well he's picking up now and he listens alittle better, we are still working on it but there is inprovement.

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D.E.

answers from Houston on

Hi. I have a 12 year old daughter. I try and show her the natural consequences of things. For example, if she won't set the table, then she won't get to eat dinner. If she won't help around the house, then I point out that I won't have time to take her to a party because I'll be too tired from doing her chores. Also, I give her choices. "Would you rather take out the trash or empty the dishwasher?". This age is miserable. Good luck, D.

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