Maybe it is normal. The whole "pre-teen" thing. My daughter used to be insanely helpful. Happy. We would talk about anything together. She would beg to help out around the house. Would happily go for walks with us as a family.
Now, everything is different.
I don't know what caused it, but there are a few contributing factors. Her father (we are divorced) returned to the country this year and started seeing her and her brother again. He then got remarried and immediately pregnant, which I know is screwing with her a little bit. Recently we had two deaths in the family less than a month apart, and she is grieving. She's in a depression, which is only further escalating the problem.
I'm working on getting her into councelling, but nobody is returning my calls. It's currently a waiting game.
And it could be none of these things are contributing factors, and it's just the age. Point being, I don't know how to handle it.
- She is mean to everyone in the house. Disrespectful and mean. Her little brother loves her SO much, and she treats him like crap. Complete garbage. It's sad to see.
- She's a slob. She used to be tidy, but now trashes her room on the regular.
- She's dirty. I make her shower, she complains and doesn't wash herself properly. She won't brush her teeth unless forced. She would wear the same clothes every day if we let her.
- She's lazy. If she drops something, she leaves it there. If she spills something, she leaves it there. If she empties a toilet paper roll, she leaves it there. She won't even flush the toilet anymore.
- She's having trouble at school. Comes home and says she's being bullied. But parents are complaining that SHE is bullying THEIR kids. I have been in to talk to the principal about it. It's a mess.
She looks mopey all the time. She talks about how hard her life is.
I don't even know where to go with this one.
Any advice, ANY would be appreciated. Maybe this is normal. I know kids become difficult as teens, and she's my oldest child so this is all new territory. But I don't know what to do.
It's also straining my relationship with my partner, because he feels I'm not doing enough to punish her for being so completely mean and disrespectful to everyone, and everyone's things. Currently, my method is to make her do something nice for someone if she does something mean to them. I tried "grounding" her in the past. Didn't work. Time outs? Useless.
I don't know what to do to help her through this without forcing her away. We're in a divorce situation. She has threatened to move out before, because she doesn't get disciplined at her father's house the few times a year she goes there. How do I discipline her without scaring her away? Should I even be worrying about that? Her behaviour has already caused fights with my ex, because he - of course - blames me because she lives with me.
Good times. =/
Edited by ~Nikki~ - 11/30/12 at 5:32am