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Question
Posted by: O Proct | 2005/07/27

Over protective or not

Hi Doc

My daughter is 13 turning 14 october, I love her very much always when she is out with friends to play she come late home after 6pm I know she loves going to park,play on the street or hang around with other girls and all her friends are older than her.The thing i don't want her to play till late because she make me worry.it doesn't seem she is listening to me she's still come late on monday i laid my hand on her and since i feel very bad about it.

Doc please help me . Is it because she is the only child i pay too much attention on her or maybe she started going out with boyfriends (I will die if that so) She is lying to me if i ask her to do something for me or for herself e.g like sweep the kitchen she will say i have swept even if she didn't the floor is still dirty. What makes her to lie to me.

Please help

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageTeen expert

Hi there

it is important for you to maintain your position as parent and if your daughter is not listening to you then a good place to start is to ask her why she is not listening to you. Many people at this age push the parental boundaries and it sounds as if this is what she is doing. It is also a time when boundaries need to be thought about and at times renegotiated. However, if you feel that the older girls are into things that are too advanced for your daughters age then you need to keep an eye on this.

One way of mainatining your boundaries is to link pocket money to chores and to coming in on time. The main message to give your daughter is that it is because you love her that these boundaries exist - for her safety.

There may be some things that you are prepared to negotiate - such as the time she comes home, and other things you are certain about. Get this clear in your own mind before speaking to her. What is important is that this is a conversation - if it becomes a lecture chances are your daughter will not take any interest!

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

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Our users say:
Posted by: Disturbed | 2005/08/04

My mother did that.. and when i was 14 I found i could not live with her any more.. It was horable... She was annoying the crap outa me, and i left home. don't do that to your daughter

Reply to Disturbed
Posted by: Mike | 2005/07/28

Of course you'll worry, all parents do, just don't let it interfere with her need to assert some independance. I also have a 13yr old son, most parents will find the early teen years have the most mood swings. I think it has alot to do with the changes in their bodies, and chemical make-up of the brain. It levels off as they age. Sometimes I think ages 13-15 are roughest on them and parents.

That is good you communicate and are open with your daughter, many parents are not and have the roughest time. My own tell me everything ,sometimes to much, I do not yell, overreact etc. I just give them the facts as I know them and if I do not know something tell them where to look. The internet we are using now is full of usefull information for people of all ages.

As each of my oldest told me they were sexually active I informed them of how, where to obtain birth control, helped them set up appointments and paid for their prescriptions. High School students know more than people give them credit for and are very bright individuals. I realized as young women they will make their own choices, I can only provide what I can to help and protect them, I can not control them.

When one of my daughters told me she experimented with drugs, we calmly talked about it and instead of yelling, throwing a fit, I stated a couple facts and showed her news articles on the internet. When your doctor asks if you have any medication allergies it is because not all medication is safe for everyone to take. Some peoples react differently, what is harmless to one may kill another. Same with illegal drugs. Also you do not know what someone is actually giving you, these people are no pharmicists. What they say they are giving you and what you get may be two different things. And these drugs are not made in a medical drug company lab, who knows what they actually put in them, dead or alive all they care about is they got your money. She's never tried them again, but admits to a wine cooler now and then.

When I asked my daughters the where, when and with who when they went out, I informed them it is not to pry, be nosy etc. I
needed to know in case of emergency so I knew where to contact them. If a grandparent, etc., became deathly ill and on their deathbed, how would I contact them if I did not know where or who they were with. Also if something happened to one of my daughters where would I begin to look. All are aware how many people are murdered in the US, etc. Parents must also let their sons/daughters know where, when, and who when they go out.

I've said before in other posts, in the teen years you are no longer raising a child but a young adult. The end product of your time is not to send a nieve, scared child into the world but a confident and well informed adult. Your job is to guide them on this path as a mentor, the control method of parenthood is not the way to go as they will take control and you'll be left with a very damaged relationship.

In the later teen years 16 & up parents must establish an adult relationship with their teens. One that will continue when they leave the home. Many parent fail to do this and are cut out of their childs lives. Examples not being invited to your own son/daughters wedding, not being allowed to see a grandchild, never being able to visit or see your adult son/daughter, these are all examples of very damaged relationships and it happens often in the US. Not to mention what may happen if you are incapacitated and now it's up to your son/daughter to make medical and life decisions for you. They say life comes full circle.

Reply to Mike
Posted by: O Proct | 2005/07/28

Thanks a million Mike, now i feel better i will try to do as you say,But we do communicate a lot and to be honest she is open to me . We are friends i will just stop treating her like a baby i will start to apply trust in her as an adult and stop worrying toomuch when she is out to play.

Thanks

Reply to O Proct
Posted by: Mike | 2005/07/27

Your daughter is no longer a child and is growing up, perhaps that is what you fear. Being overprotective always backfires badly as teens age. They must assert their independance and start breaking away from parents, it is what the teen years are all about. You must establish communication with your daughter while she's younger, when she is 16-17 then you will find you've lost any type of power struggle. Learn to talk WITH your daughter not TO her. Do not treat her like a child and ignore her opinions, ideas etc. If you want any rule to work you need her cooperation.

Dating will happen and is a part of growing up, which she's doing.
If you respect her and establish good communication she'll come to you for advice or just to chat. If not she'll shut you out of her life and you'll never reallly know what is going on.

Never, never strike a teen. You'll have alot of work to do now that you've done it. Not only does it show you lack control, but respect for her as a person. Also as she ages there may be a time she strikes back at you.

I have 3 daughters ages 11, 17 and 19. Not only in my relationship with them, but their friends I've figured out what works and what backfires. You have the best chance now BEFORE she's a young woman of 16-17. Take her out to dinner and talk with her, let her know you are there for her but realize you must let her find her way in life your job is to guide her not control her, she is an individual and a person just as you are.

Reply to Mike

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