Oh wait, back to banging my head into a wall! *post 77* - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 112 Old 03-17-2007, 08:59 PM - Thread Starter
 
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(please don't offer any advice unless you read and understand the whole post. I use sarcasm a lot and I'm very upset right now)

Added: please read through all my posts if you are giving advice, some responses are making is kinda obvious that didn't happen.

...is what I really want to do, just to stop myself from strangling DD. She's got this thing for kicking holes in walls. We had fixed all the holes in our old house and talked to her, and she's been good for a couple months. Today, she got sent to her room, politely because DH and I were arguing (so she wouldn't be right there and it was a nice, "honey, can you go read in your room for a bit", kind of thing), but she wanted to play on the computer right then, so she was mad. There is now a 3 FOOT by 1 FOOT hole in her bedroom wall. I've HAD IT. She doesn't need counseling, she doesn't need a talking to. I'm to the point I think she needs a good butt kicking, but that wouldn't do any good either! I can't think of anything to get her to stop, so I punished her - no more WoW (world of warcraft) ever - period. What good will it do? Nothing of course! Because she doesn't care! ARRRGHHHHH. How do you get a child to care when they don't. The only thing that makes her do good is bribes - allowance, treats, etc. She doesn't care about her brothers, or DH or I, she doesn't care if we need her to help or just want her around (like to go on a walk or watch a movie, even if she gets to run the show), unless she's getting something out of it. She only spontaniously gives a hug if she wants something, she only picks up her room to get out of trouble, or get computer time, she only hugs her brothers if I'm watching and she thinks she'll get "points". I'm just sick of it. We haven't raised her this way. I know too many kids who are like this and I've deliberately tried to raise her not to be so selfish and uncaring, but I failed Its all her, her, her. What can I do, besides counseling, because we don't have the money or insurance anyway for it, even if I was willing to try.

Please read the disclaimer at the beginning of the post before you reply, if you do. And please understand that I posted such a disclaimer because I way too often see posts where it is obvious that the poster did not read the whole original post, not because I'm being a bitch.

Amy ~ Web Designing Single Mom to 4: DD14, DS12, DS5, DS3
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#2 of 112 Old 03-17-2007, 09:11 PM
 
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just sending hugs...cause i have no answers...

peace...

Homeschooling Ama to boys (ages 10 and 6) and my SoldierGirl who is serving in the US Army, StepMom to three crazy teens. I'm married to the love of my life. 

 

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#3 of 112 Old 03-17-2007, 09:15 PM
 
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Yeah, I don't have any answers but we're all human and we all have some sort of crisis to muddle through and learn from. (Ha! I wish I could skip my current growth opportunity!)
Think of the day when you're a Grandma & your dd is looking at you for wisdom and guidance....
yeah
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#4 of 112 Old 03-17-2007, 09:53 PM
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Not an expert, just throwing out ideas........

Sounds like she's really angry about something (other than the surface issue). Give her something else more appropriate to hit.......a punching bag and boxing gloves, perhaps. She has aggression she needs to get rid of in a healthy way. Or put her in karate--where kicking is encouraged!

Give her materials to fix up her wall......... And tell her calmly to fix the hole. She'll get tired of fixing holes. (Even if the result isn't perfect............have her do it herself.)

"Our task is not to see the future, but to enable it."
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#5 of 112 Old 03-17-2007, 09:59 PM
 
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If she was sick, would you find a way to afford medical care for her? I think this is the same thing. If she was my child, I would find a way to get counseling for her.

What avenues have you tried to access affordable counseling? Why do you say she doesn't need counseling?
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#6 of 112 Old 03-17-2007, 10:05 PM
 
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Well mama, my dd sounds very similar to yours, the me,me,me thing just rings so true. My dd just doesn't seem to care. She doesn't kick massive! holes in walls tho has kicked holes in walls. She kicked the car today cos I was chatting to a mom that my other dd was staying to tea with, she was getting mightily annoyed cos she was waiting to get into town. Last night it was ' why don't you just go and kill yourself'. Well Im not gonna get upset with this stuff anymore. I think I do know a bit how you feel, my other 2dc are loving and caring tho prone to outbursts and the usual stuff just not to the extent eldest dd is, it's like she is pushing the limits all the time. She went ape this week cos I curtailed her pc time on school nights, she's only 'niceish' to me when she wants money etc, I'm totally sick of it but what can I do? I will try and talk with her but she doesn't want to talk to me. Y'know I'm starting to greet now thinking about it cos I feel such a failure and I keep hoping it will stop. I have not brought my dc up to be selfish and uncaring either and it's also affecting the other's . Yep they think they know it all and I also see other children of all ages behaving like this, I would not have got away with it when I was young tho I did kick a hole once, she probably gets it from me then I'm to blame for everything. So hugs cos it's very tiring dealing with this sorta thing, and depressing. I would probably give her the plaster and say fix it yourself, what to do about the anger tho? if you find out please let me know! I am gonna try( again) and talk to my dd cos I want her to know I love her and care very much but am not prepared to be treated like this, it's abuse really. Oh and I'm not sure about counselling being a method of sorting out extremely selfish, capitalist children( my dd is being just this) our society is encouraging this kind of behaviour on many levels, they are just acting out what they are being taught, this behaviour doesn't have to be learnt at home.
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#7 of 112 Old 03-17-2007, 10:13 PM
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Also, the book Unconditional Parenting comes to mind. Have you read it?

"Our task is not to see the future, but to enable it."
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#8 of 112 Old 03-17-2007, 11:26 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I will check out the book, we just got our library cards today.

When we get health insurance, we may look into counseling, but both DH and I have a serious lack of trust for anyone who's gone to school to "help" people, so it'll take a while to find someone who both DH and I, and DD are comfortable with.

We've given her options for her anger, hitting her pillow, running around the block, talking, drawing, writing, just internalizing it by playing on the computer or reading, and nothing seems to work for long. She's been, for lack of a better word, difficult, her whole life. I know when she was little, seeing me beat up by her bio dad, affected her, we talk about him when she wants to, as much as I hate him, I confront it for her and keep it all very fair for her. I know she hates that we move so much, and I know she has a love/hate relationship with homeschooling. I know she dispises my dad (her grandpa, who lives with us) at times. We talk about all these things and more and I try to work out solutions that will work for her, not just me or her dad. I try to include her in things that are mature but not too grown up, like the color of the car we're going to buy, or what we are having for dinner. I try to give her freedom and playtime and "her" time, but she complains all she does is take care of her brothers. Well, she helps, but no more then any other family member should contribute in any other family! She hates that DS1 is developmentally delayed and can't do many of the things that other kids his age should be able to do. She hates that we're not rich, that we're not famous, that we're not the Swiss family Robinson and the Little House on the Prairie all wrapped into one.

Basically, I think she just hates being 11 and is handling it very, very poorly. I handled it bad as well, but I had parents who hated each other, literally, and I had to resort to stealing to eat many days because my mom had no food in the house after she'd spent my dad's disability on clothes, our house was condemably-filthy and blah, blah, blah. DH and I are affectionate with each other, we love the kids, we talk to them, we care and we show it. Life isn't perfect, but she's got it a damn sight better then I did. Of course, she doesn't care about that, and I can't make her. But shouldn't she be happier then I was? How can a parent try so hard and fail so miserably?

forthebest, I hope we both can figure this out

Amy ~ Web Designing Single Mom to 4: DD14, DS12, DS5, DS3
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#9 of 112 Old 03-17-2007, 11:28 PM - Thread Starter
 
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As for the hole, we rent so it has to be done perfectly. I'm not losing my deposits over this! But she helps clean up the huge mess after the holes are patched, which is almost as big of a job.

Amy ~ Web Designing Single Mom to 4: DD14, DS12, DS5, DS3
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#10 of 112 Old 03-17-2007, 11:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Synthea™ View Post
I will check out the book, we just got our library cards today.



We've given her options for her anger, hitting her pillow, running around the block, talking, drawing, writing, just internalizing it by playing on the computer or reading, and nothing seems to work for long.
I'm glad you're going to check out the book. It's difficult to always be an "unconditional parent" but I think it's a good goal to reach for.

Again, perhaps consider getting a punching bag and boxing gloves, hanging it in the basement or garage, and letting her go at it. That has to feel so much more "rewarding" than hitting a pillow. You can really feel the "umph" of a punching bag, which is probably the satisfaction she is getting from kicking the wall.

"Our task is not to see the future, but to enable it."
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#11 of 112 Old 03-18-2007, 12:21 AM
 
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Is she about to start her period?

My second dd was a NIGHTMARE, a real Dr. Jekyll/Madame Hyde, for about a year before she started, and then when she started, she was a whole 'nother (nicer) girl. That and a huge boost of calcium in her diet calmed her right down.
Just a thought, but her behavior may be hormonal.
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#12 of 112 Old 03-18-2007, 12:22 AM
 
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She sounds like she may have some post traumatic stress symptoms--you mention that she saw you beat up. That could be horribly traumatic to a child, and it may take years to materialize. Add to it her frustrations and mourning a special needs sibling (and I fully believe that siblings grieve the loss of their "sibling dreams" when the special needs mean that the sibling won't be that sibling they had imagined). Then moving a lot, as you mention, could shake any sense of stability that she may have, especially if she has some unresolved trauma in her life.

It does sound like she needs to talk to someone...I promise, we're not all bad (I'm one who went to school to "help" people--I have my master's in counseling and am in the process of my PhD). There is someone out there who will click with you and your child... :

I don't really have much advice, because I don't really know her. But I think I'd look into getting her help for some trauma issues. Being a teenager is tough enough, but having something feel wrong and not knowing how to express it can make things worse.... :

Peace mama...it sounds like you're in a tough place right now--I hope everything works out soon...

~Brandon Michael (11/23/03), Jocelyn Lily Nữ (2/4/07, adopted 5/28/07 from Vietnam), Amelia Rylie (1/14/09), & Ryland Josef William (9/7/05-9/7/05 @ 41 wks). 
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#13 of 112 Old 03-18-2007, 12:28 AM
 
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When we get health insurance, we may look into counseling, but both DH and I have a serious lack of trust for anyone who's gone to school to "help" people, so it'll take a while to find someone who both DH and I, and DD are comfortable with.
I can understand the aversion to counseling/therapy, as that's how I approached it for a long time. However, I do think that counseling can be incredibly, incredibly helpful and is something to consider if/when your means allow. I saw a therapist for many of my tween/teen years and am seeing one now. I find, personally, that I'm much calmer and more balanced after therapy. As far as the "going to school to help people thing," I think that going through all the time, energy, and expense of getting the degrees and certifications required to become a counselor of any kind will weed out people who are doing it for the wrong reasons and leave the people who really do want to help people. (: Sorry for the appallingly long sentence...)

If you're truly averse to counseling and/or your means don't allow for it, I'd try and get your dd involved in a positive activity outside the home--a sports team, art class, volunteer work, etc. Especially sports--the endorphin high from exercise is like natural Prozac--it certainly won't solve your problems overnight, but it will certainly help. Anything, though, that will allow her some time away from the family and the chance to begin refining her own identity will probably help her self-esteem and thusly her behavior.

Good luck!
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#14 of 112 Old 03-18-2007, 12:47 AM
 
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I'm glad you're going to check out the book. It's difficult to always be an "unconditional parent" but I think it's a good goal to reach for.

Again, perhaps consider getting a punching bag and boxing gloves, hanging it in the basement or garage, and letting her go at it. That has to feel so much more "rewarding" than hitting a pillow. You can really feel the "umph" of a punching bag, which is probably the satisfaction she is getting from kicking the wall.
I have to agree with that. When I feel the need to hit something, a pillow just does not do it, it's way too soft and gives no satisfaction in hitting. Definitely look into something like a punching bag that would take her violent energy better.
Not that that's a permanent solution by any means, just a more non-destructive way that she can let out her anger until you can find a counsellor you're all comfortable with.
Big to all of you.
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#15 of 112 Old 03-18-2007, 12:58 AM
 
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I COMPLETELY understand that this isn't an isolated incident, and that you were distracted etc. BUT Why couldn't you and your husband gone away from the computer to argue? It seems silly that she would have to leave YOU when YOU are the ones needing to be alone. Seems like she should have been able to use the computer.

Why does she despise her grandpa so much? That kind of leaped out at me too.
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#16 of 112 Old 03-18-2007, 02:13 AM
 
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good luck!! My dd is in counselling finally (she's 16) For myself yoga does amazing things, would she like yoga? I've got not good answers but just try to remember how much you love her and give yourself some relief w/ a break to do what you enjoy.
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#17 of 112 Old 03-18-2007, 02:51 AM
 
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Wow, Synthea, I found 11 to be hard. But the kicking holes in walls, esp. when you're renting, I bet that really stresses you out. And she knows it, right? She's definitely acting something out. I'm in the middle of reading Raising your Spirited Child and I'm finding it's got tons of information on working with your child's and your temperament in mind. Positive Discipline may also have some tools you can use. The latter chapters of Hold On to Your Kids might also be useful - she needs to be oriented to you, otherwise she has no reason to listen to you.

I still would recommend counseling, ASAP. With your family history, I think this is something where you should reach out for help. Are you associated through a school or other organization that might offer such services? Or are you near a college that might offer such services at a discount? When I was a student (and single mom) I went through a counseling service on campus that was really helpful - the counselor just acted as a sounding board and asked me questions that I didn't think to ask myself. I would avoid "psychoanalysis", but regular old counseling should be ok. And if you can find an Adlerian psychologist or even a local Adlerian association - they may help you figure out why your daughter is doing this and help you find ways to fix it.

Lori : mum to Emily (nov94) and Calvin (jul 03), : and : married to : Wes
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#18 of 112 Old 03-18-2007, 03:57 AM
 
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I am a teenager myself, 16 years old, and I've done the whole "my parents dont get me, I am going to throw the whole tantrum thing around"
Many teens go through what it would seem like they don't care about anybody but you also have to understand that we feel like everyone is out to get us. KWIM ? Your daughter seems that shes reaching out but doesn't know how to grasp on how to get your attention. When I was asked to do something, or go somewhere, and I really just wanted to be along I acted out. I always felt being alone would help clear my mind. But I also knew after I had my little "fits" I wanted my mom or dad to come in my room and try to talk to me even if I was yelling back at them I wanted them to see how much I needed them at that time. Maybe she just wants some sort of attention and love from you. Without the whole "I Love you" and hugs ordeal. Not counciling but maybe do a mother/daughter day do something fun and talk. Once a week even. It could possibly help and when she has her fits dont bang your head in a wall LOL. just let her go on with her fit and then the next mother/daughter day you can ask her if theres something that she needs to talk about instead of asking her while shes already in the heat of being angry.

sorry for the long post but ive had my emotional and physical breakdowns like your daughters before.

<33 Italy
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#19 of 112 Old 03-18-2007, 04:10 AM
 
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I have to agree with amagicalwishxoxo....

My son is now 17 and our house still bears the trauma, holes in walls, doors, in various states of repair, and he is now the most lovely person- not just me who thinks so. This stage shall pass, just like the toddler years did. But where I agree with the PP is, try to find some way of seeing the positive in your child. Sometimes your child needs an affirmation of your love even when you most feel like pushing them away. Maybe not the hugs and I love you ordeal....but some way of sharing some postiive time. Friends- yours- can help here...they can help you see the good things about your child, and the good things about you as a mother. Self esteem can take the biggest bashing here.

What helped me was my friends supporting me and telling me I was doing a good job, and that, yes, it was very very hard.

It is a very hard space to be in, for you both. Hang in there!
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#20 of 112 Old 03-18-2007, 12:58 PM
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I keep thinking about you and your daughter, and I just want to hug you both.

I happened across this statistic in a local paper today:

"Experts say 70 percent of children who grow up in violent homes will end up in violent adult relationships."

(You can read the whole article at http://deseretnews.com/dn/view/0,1249,660203879,00.html)

and it made me realize that your dd really needs professional help (in addition to that punching bag!) As another poster mentioned, please see your dd as sick and in need of help to get whole again.

"Our task is not to see the future, but to enable it."
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#21 of 112 Old 03-18-2007, 01:31 PM
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I don't have much advice to add. All I can think of is this might be something you just have to ride through. I have not read the book mentioned but maybe that thought is in there. I dunno. Your dd sounds alot like a hurt animal (a disclaimer of my own: no I'm not calling her an animal) pushed to a corner, lashing out and trying to hold her ground. You seem to understand where that anger is coming from too. She might need counseling and I'm not knocking it... but that always seems the answer. In some cases it is. And others, well maybe not. You could try to be on the lookout for triggers and try to headoff some of her fear. If she saw you being beat by your ex she probably has very accute reaction to any conflict. I can see her getting upset when you're having an intense discussion with your current dh if in the past that led to you being hurt. She just might need lots of time to come accept that is not the way it is now. I really like the idea of trying to giv her outlets to express her anger that do not involve ruining your home. Also, if she is in a sport like karate or anything, maybe that will help her feel better in how she earns your pride. I can't imagine her liking how she get "points from you" now. It is too slimy (not the right word but I hope ykwm) and beneath the way you know you raised her. She knows deep down it is not right but does not seem to be able to break it.


s

PS- I really like how their are teens on mdc
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#22 of 112 Old 03-18-2007, 03:02 PM
 
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I can relate to your feelings of being a failure. I have been there and it feels like hell. I am grateful that I felt like hell rather than justified or indifferent, because the feeling that I was in hell prompted me to make changes in the way I viewed my role as a parent. Emotions are often indicators of a need for change. You are looking for alternatives and that is a sign that you are looking for better ways. I think it takes a lot of courage to be critical of ourselves as parents and even more to admit that we have not found the best way to do this.

It sounds like your dd gets very resentful when being punished. I have learned that punishing escalates frustration, even when using the "nice voice". In fact, I can see from the teen's perspective how that would be even more maddening...a kind of "Don't pretend you are being nice when you are punishing me." thing. What do you think punishing will solve? In my opinion and from personal experience, it leads to resentment and a poisoning of a healthy relationship. What are your thoughts on never again punishing your dd?
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#23 of 112 Old 03-18-2007, 05:43 PM - Thread Starter
 
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She wasn't being punished when I sent her to her room, she hadn't even asked yet to play on the computer. DH and I started arguing, I stopped, asked DD to go read in her room, she complained she wanted to play on the computer and stormed off. It was like : I went in to talk to her, tell her I wasn't mad at her and say I was sorry for making her leave and she just glared at me, it wasn't til about 20 minutes later that DH discovered the hole.

Yes, I am looking at what I am doing with her as wrong, but I don't think I could do anything right.

She was only 3 when it happened, and she was in a couple years of counseling then for everything that was going on. She was kicked out finally because there was nothing wrong and the insurance wouldn't pay anymore! The only thing she can remember from our big fight is that her bio dad stepped on her foot on accident and she cried. Counseling couldn't bring any more out of her, so I don't think there's any more to remember, where she was so young. I have no memories before the age of 5 myself.

DD isn't growing up in a violent home. She was in one until she was 3, but not since and never will be again.

I do talk to her, and just let her talk without any judgement, but I guess it's not enough. I give her us time, DH gives her time. I truly feel like it's a "no matter what I do, it'll never be enough" because I'm giving her the us time, the love, the time for herself, the ability to be herself. I ask out of her no more then she can handle and bust my ass every day to make sure she knows she's loved and we want her in our home and in our family. I guess I'm angry and sad today because I look back over the years and realize that no matter what I did, it was never enough. She's been temperamental since she was born, just how I always was and still am, but refuses to use the tools I've given her to control the destructive out bursts. So frustrated.

I guess I'll get a punching bag on payday.

She despises my dad because he's a jerk. I take care of him because I am the last of 5 kids and the rest gave up trying. He's not the reason she's acting like this, she's been temperamental since before she ever met him, but he definitely sets her off teasing and picking on her (and my other kids). He's an ass, but it's not an option to put him in a home. We get plenty of time without him, when he's feeling well enough we can go overnight without him so we'll go camping and whatnot.

Can you ell I'm : and lost here?

Amy ~ Web Designing Single Mom to 4: DD14, DS12, DS5, DS3
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#24 of 112 Old 03-18-2007, 07:33 PM
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She despises my dad because he's a jerk. I take care of him because I am the last of 5 kids and the rest gave up trying. He's not the reason she's acting like this, she's been temperamental since before she ever met him, but he definitely sets her off teasing and picking on her (and my other kids). He's an ass, but it's not an option to put him in a home. We get plenty of time without him, when he's feeling well enough we can go overnight without him so we'll go camping and whatnot.

Can you ell I'm : and lost here?
Yes, I feel for you. Do you tell your dad he is a jerk and an ass? Do you stick up for your kids in front of him? Do you tell him, where your dd can hear, that it's not ok for him to pick on your kids? If not, that could be doing a lot of damage. I really admire you for taking care of your father, but I wouldn't do it at the expense of my children's self-esteem. I would say, "look dad, these are the rules for living here. Period." And mean it.

And clarification: I didn't mean to imply that your dd is currently living in a violent home, just that she had before.

"Our task is not to see the future, but to enable it."
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#25 of 112 Old 03-19-2007, 03:14 PM
 
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Amy, it looks like you have a lot of changes taking place in your lives right now. I can see where your dd might feel like she has absolutely NO control in her life, and that can be frustrating for anyone - especially a pre-teen who is getting to the point in her life where she wants MORE control.

I second the suggestion that part of her problem might be hormonal. My sons started maturing early (body hair, acne, etc), and age 11 was an emotional roller coaster for them (even though their lives were otherwise very stable). We saw more tears last year that we had seen in the previous five. We talked a lot about puberty, and homornal changes, and the fact that it WOULD get better! I remember one of my sons screaming "I HATE puberty!" Knowing that it was a temporary condition really helped them get through it.

You mentioned moving and homeschooling. Does your dd have many friends? Does she belong to any organizations (music, dance, sports, etc)? Could part of her frustration be caused by loneliness?

I don't have any advice - just hugs for all of you.

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#26 of 112 Old 03-19-2007, 04:16 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Synthea™ View Post
She despises my dad because he's a jerk. I take care of him because I am the last of 5 kids and the rest gave up trying. He's not the reason she's acting like this, she's been temperamental since before she ever met him, but he definitely sets her off teasing and picking on her (and my other kids). He's an ass, but it's not an option to put him in a home. We get plenty of time without him, when he's feeling well enough we can go overnight without him so we'll go camping and whatnot.
This really stands out to me. "teasing" and "picking on" an 11 year old can quickly translate into major self-esteem issues for the kid. What you see as annoying, jerky and rude can quickly get internalized by a kid that age, especially if she remembers Gramps being nicer to her at one time. And it can happen even if the teasing is pretty infrequent. Kids really pick up on that kind of thing. Someone said she may feel like everyone is out to get her - I think the grandfather might really be exacerbating these feelings.

When he's being a jerk, do you stand up for your dd? If he says something borderline, do you step in and say, "That's not true, dd was _______" or otherwise stick up for her? I think that would go a long way towards making her feel better about you and about herself. It's important to remember that while YOU may realize that he's "just being a jerk," if you don't say much to stick up for her, she's going to think that you agree with every rude, crummy thing he does/says to her because you don't stop him. And talking to him alone really isn't enough. You have to defend your dd, when appropriate, right in front of everyone. Make it known that that kind of treatment of your child/children is unacceptable in your home.

It's wonderful and hard that you're taking responsibility for your dad. But at the same time, if he's being an ass to your dd, you owe it to her to do something about it (and not just expect her to "get it" because we all pitch in, make sacrifices, etc.). Depending on how mean or caustic he is, it could really be a painful, poisonous influence in your dd's psychological health and no amount of "But you understand, we have to take care of Gramps" will make her feel better when he's being a jerk to her. It will just make her feel like, at least on some level, you agree with him.

Sorry to write a novel. Obviously, I've had personal experience with this kind of situation . . . as the kid. I hope it helps a little to see where some of her frustration/perspective might be coming from.

Julia
dd 1 year old
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#27 of 112 Old 03-19-2007, 06:27 PM
 
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It sounds like your DD has had to deal with a lot in her short life. I can empathize with her. I agree with the PP who said that she might be feeling like nothing is within her control.

Back to your feeling that she should be happier because she has it better than you did, have you talked to her about how you grew up? Can you tell her a story about how hard it was to grow up with your dad? Have you talked to her about the reasons why you've taken him in?

Also, I don't mean to step on toes, but have you considered sending her out to school? Is she interested in trying it? Just getting out of the house every day might relieve some stress on both of you. I understand if there are reasons behind your homeschooling that make that impossible, but I had some homeschooling relatives who had a similar issue with a child and they ended up putting him in school, and it really helped them.

I hope you find a way to make things better for both of you.
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#28 of 112 Old 03-20-2007, 02:44 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I tried posting twice earlier and both times, my ever mobile 9 month old got to the power button on top of my computer I had looooong posts written, and just don't have the oomph to type all it again, so I apologize if this sounds weird...

Public school has always been an option. She's not interested, nor am I. We're working on the friends thing (YMCA, Camp Fire Kids, SCA or other medieval group, etc).

My dad: I stick up for her and back him the hell off immediately and abruptly. He's from a very odd era and thinks his way is right, so it's a never ending battle. We talk about how he is going senile often so she understands he's lonely and just doesn't understand the right way to ask for attention. She mostly ignores him. DH is a great dad for the whole male role model thing.

I distinctly, and painfully, remember the years from about 8-15 (when I got pg and actually grew up). I remember the pain and loneliness and helplessness and fear and hatred and jealousy of other kids...maybe I'm trying to hard to make her happy and just need to let her be? Everything else I'm doing, all the hands on, caring stuff, isn't working.

I think I got most of what I had typed before, just not written as well Sorry! Scatterbrained bad today....

Amy ~ Web Designing Single Mom to 4: DD14, DS12, DS5, DS3
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#29 of 112 Old 03-20-2007, 03:07 PM
 
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That's great what you said about sticking up for her. I'm not surprised, since you seem very on top of things in your home.

We have some of this with dh's little sister, who's almost 14 and really more his daughter than his sister (large age difference, her dad is an alcoholic, there's been a divorce, etc.)

I think that part of what you said at the end is so true. That being that age is hard no matter what, and that there is only so much you can do to help her to feel better . . . the rest is just suffering through adolescence. I remember it as the most difficult time of my life emotionally, and I'd never want to go back. I remember pretty much everyone was pretty darn miserable most of the time, though we found plenty of ways to have fun (some of them not very healthy).

So I want to make dSIL feel better all the time, but I also know that some of that is just what it is, and I can't fix it. I can just try to be accessible if she ever wants to talk or needs me. I can tell you're doing that for your dd.

It sounds like you're very in tune with her, communicate well, and are doing your best. I hope things improve.

Julia
dd 1 year old
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#30 of 112 Old 03-23-2007, 02:04 AM
 
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When dh and I are having a disagreement we go in the bedroom or outside, wherever we can talk alone. It does sound like your dd is really hurting. I don't care is a mask for pain. For caring and for not feeling safe. Counseling really can make a huge difference in peoples lives if they are willing to be honest and work on their personal issues. Sounds like the whole family could benefit.
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