Mother Says Teenage Daughter Is 'Horrible,' She's Starting To 'Hate' Her

Nov 24, 2021 by apost team

There are so many wonderful aspects of being a parent but there are also some less than thrilling ones too. One of those is when children go from being innocent children to misbehaved teenagers. When teens are playing up, it can feel like they have a personal vendetta against you even though you brought them into the world.

One woman and her family had felt the wrath of her 14-year-old daughter and it reached such a peak that they didn't know what else to do. So she wrote into Kidspot's Advice Needed column for help. In her message, she described her family's situation:

"Our 14 year old daughter has turned into that horrible teenager we all read about and dread. We put up with her back chat, rudeness and laziness to name a few. She is extremely horrible to us as her parents but even her younger brother."

She goes on to say that the situation had become "worse to the point (that) she has told her brother she wishes he was dead and how she wishes she was an only child." The desperate mother added: "We have tried everything to stop it. Now I’ve started to turn my love for her to hate." Unsure what else to do, she said:

"My husband wants to send her to boarding school as we can’t deal with it anymore. She has started to cause a major split in the family."

What's more, the mom said that her daughter "is kind hearted and loved by everyone else. (They) are always commented on how well behaved, polite and fun she is." Desperate to change the dynamic in her household, the mother asked, "what are we doing wrong?" 

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Columnist Laura Mazza began her response with a story about herself in 1999 when she was 13 going on 14. She described the innocence she had compared to her slightly older friends and her love of the band Hanson. Then on New Year's Eve, she woke up as if she knew she'd be 14 that coming year and ended up having a wild night in which she "drank bourbon ... flirted with some boys, and welcomed the year by passing out." Her "hormones raged" and she found herself "turned into a 14-year-old." She then quickly brought her point back to the mom's message:

"And admittedly, I became an a**hole too. But! I didn't mean to, and I'm telling you that because you need to know that. I didn't mean to. Just like your daughter isn't meaning to either."

The advice columnist said the parents hadn't done anything wrong, rather, their daughter was "going through the hormone-iest initial year of slamming doors, attitude, experimenting with bodies, drugs, and social media." She added that she calls this period "the write-off years because you are left feeling helpless and like your sweet child has been replaced by a demon."

She considered the daughter's point of view, who may go from feeling on top of the world to emotional and upset at the drop of a hat. Her body is going through changes, pimples appear out of nowhere and there is a constant comparison to one's peers. She summed up the daughter's contradictory feelings as such:

"... be an adult, but still crave being a child. You want to feel free but also feel so much responsibility. You have to make choices and decisions about your life, but you also feel restricted. You feel misunderstood and judged."

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Mazza suggested the mother should think of how she acts when she's anxious, how you're "more likely to lash out at the people you feel comfortable with, who you love and feel safe with." That's why the family is "getting the brunt of the attitude."

She rejected the idea of sending the daughter to a boarding school unless the parents want their "daughter to feel rejected and have some serious trust and acceptance issues." She pointed out that it "isn't a cliché in the movies for no reason."

Instead, her advice for the mom was to treat her daughter like a fellow housemate. She wouldn't barge into a housemate's room and order them to clean it up, so she shouldn't do the same to her daughter. She suggested "allowing them to add cleaning their room to their schedule" on their own time.

In regard to the daughter's comments to her brother, the advice columnist wondered if there was any jealousy between the siblings. She said to "get him into some age responsibilities, so she isn't feeling like the target."

Lastly, Mazza said to talk to the daughter every day and to listen wholeheartedly. She said to not "interrupt or respond with judgment" and if they can build a "tight relationship and respect," the daughter will be more likely to consider the mom's opinion. She added:

"If she doesn't want to talk, talk to her about your day, what stressed you out. Offer pauses to get her to join in. Make excuses to spend time with her." 

Finally, she said:

"You may meet with some initial resistance, but you should see some improvement over time with consistent, gentle steps." 

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What do you think about the advice columnist's tips? Do you have any of your own to add? Let us know, then pass this on to others so they can read them too.

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