MNeedsHelp's picture
MNeedsHelp

16 year old daughter hates me

I am having the worst time with my oldest daughter. She will be 16 this month. She has always been a well-mannered child, a good student, an athelete and she has friends. However, two years ago in 8th grade, she transferred to a new school, which she loves, but last year, she got to be friends with a senior girl on her lacrosse team who is a really bad influence. Through her, she has also gotten to be friends with this girl's best friend who is in college. She is not allowed to hang out with them but we have not forbid her from talking/texting them because things have been contentious enough over this whole issue. These girls counsel her on how to fight with me and how bad she's got it at home.  She has turned in to a different person and is so mean and hateful to me (her mom) and sometimes to her sister, less so to her father. I became so concerned at the end of the school year that I talked to a counselor at school who recommended a psychologist, and my daughter and I have been seeing her seperately all summer.  Last week, I shared with my daughter my concern about her talking to these girls for 20 and 30 minutes at a time on her cell phone - like  don't they have friends their own age? This weekend, I get my phone bill and she's been up past midnight talking to the college girl after we've had this whole discussion. So last night, after being Mrs. Give-In-and-Let-Her-Do-What-She-Wants-To-Improve-Our-Relationship, I told her she needs to start putting her phone on the charger in the kitchen every night at 10pm instead of before she goes to bed. She started crying. She was so upset (she was supposed to call one of the girls). She told me how much she hated me; that she had hated me since 8th grade and even before (for more than 2 years); that none of her friends hated their mothers and they all think I'm aweful; that everything is my fault; that I'm annoying; that I overreact to everything; that I'm always wrong, and on and on. I just cried. I know that was the wrong thing to do and  was totally self-pitying, but I am worn out. All I wanted was to be a good mom and I have completely failed. This has been going on so long and she won't even hug me anymore. I just don't know what to do. I just feel such a failure and so very sad.



Jellybeanlover's picture
Jellybeanlover

Teenagers can be one our biggest challenges as Moms. They can also be some of the means people...all those fluxing hormones and such.
You did the right thing w/ the cell phone. Though myself I think I would have taken it from her for a time (not telling her when she'd get it back). As she feels she is so grown up and feels she can talk to you and your family w/ such disrespect. I guess you could be mad at her. But then you'd be on her level of trying to hurt.
I really think she is trying to make you feel guilty and hurt, becasue she is really throwing a "teen tantrum". She wants to punish you and get you to feel you are the bad Mom. She doesn't really hate you, she's just mad at not getting her way when she likes...hence the 'teen tantrum'.
What does your husband feel and say about all this? Have you both sat down and talked to her about these so called friends, and why she feels they are her friends. when our children become teens we need to become like 'the duck' we need to let their hurting and mean words run off us like water on a duck. Stick to your plan, talk to your husband, contiue to let your daughter know you love you and will be there for her. But stick to what you know is agreed with when you and hubby have talked. It may seem harsh, or unfair to your daughter. But she'll see that once time passes you were the real friend, the one who stuck with her in these difficult days. She has alot to learn and alot of growing up to do still.
Hang in there!

stxmom's picture
stxmom

My daughter is only 12, we discoved she was using her cell phone at all hours of the night to either call people or text them and she received calls and texts all night long too. We tried taking her phone away for a few weeks but as soon as she got it back the late night calls started again. Finally we called the phone company and put limits on her phone usage, now she can't make phone calls or receive them from anyone who isn't on her approved list of callers after 9 pm during the week and 10 pm on the weekend. She was mad at first but got over it quickly.

Being a parent is the hardest job in the world. Do not be so hard on yourself, your daughther will thank you one day for caring so much about her.

MNeedsHelp's picture
MNeedsHelp

Thanks, Jellybeanlover. It really helps to get another perspective. Last night after she chewed me out, I did take her phone, and I don't plan on giving it back yet. But I am mad today. That is getting down on her level, but she said so many mean things last night that were hurtful, it's just gone from hurt to anger and I can barely talk to her now. Maybe tomorrow I can be like a duck, but not today. She is not an out-of-control person who bursts out with angry words that she doesn't mean. She really does hate me. This morning I decided to look on her Facebook to see what she has been talking to the college sophmore about - wouldn't you know, it's been me. She refers to me as the devil and a vampire, I found out, and wishes I was dead. The sophmore calls me an "f@$*ing b^%ch. My husband and I feel the same way about all of these issues concerning her and these 2 older college girls, but I've been the "designated hitter" on this, so that at least she can hate just one of us. When I bring up the subject of this girl or girls, she turns in to another person, just passionately angry and hateful. We've just been tiptoing around her, trying to keep her never-used lines of communication open, in case she comes back. We had hope for her until I brought up the cellphone bill. Neither my husband nor I know what to do now. It doesn't seem like the counselor has been much of anything but expensive.

MNeedsHelp's picture
MNeedsHelp

hi stxmom,
I didn't know you could do things like that with a cellphone. Thanks for the encouragement.

Jellybeanlover's picture
Jellybeanlover

Still think you are doing the right thing. Taking her phone is hard,calling you names and showing disrepect is unacceptable at any age. So here is another idea, try sharing w/ your daughter that she doesn't see the whole picture as you and your husband do, like the dangers of older friends and the things that they do that your family doesn't do, things that will be wrong choices for her, ect. . I really don't think your husband should be letting you be the "designated hitter". She has two parents, who brought her into this world, taught her for 16 years, and now it should be BOTH of you who sit down and talk to her about these girls. It should be supported by one as the other speaks. When you both sit, stay calm, stay focused on your plan to express these concerns of her having these girls in her life. How you see the changes in her, ect. How it affects her and you as a family. Your daughter will probalby be mad...expect it. Stay calm, reasure her often thru this talk that you love her, wanting what is best for her or you'd not be so concerned and love her so much. If you both talk to her, she is going see that its not just you "picking on her". She will see it's parent with the other supporting this. I'm also wondering if there is a relative or grandparent she looks up to that you could also involve in this discussion. Have your private meeting, so you know what you'll talk about. Then get your daughter and sit down and talk. Express to her in this conversation that if she wants to talk so much she can help pay the bill...does she have a part-time job? What other intrests does she have that might be used to help support your talk (like sports...is it suffering from her lack of not being involved as much due to this friendship?). By now you know that by just telling her No to the friendship, will cause her to do the opposite of what you ask. That's why I'd have the sit down talk with hubby and even a trusted relative. Always keep in your heart and mind she doesn't hate you, she's just finding ways to express her hurt and anger over what she is being told.
Sometimes when I think back about how I behaved at that age, it helps to relate to our children. I also may talk to my Mom or siblings and get their input about things. But when it comes to facing the child with the problem. I go to my husband and talk it over, and we both approach our child, we sit down and talk. This is so much better than thinking you are alone in this and that she hates you. She is doing her teen tantrum thing, just as a small child would lay and kick or scream....only now she knows words and ways to get you to react differently. Don't give up, don't give in to her tantrum. These older girls are not a good thing right now,possibly not ever. Your daughter just thinks she knows whats best, but you've been this age. You are the parent and have been blessed for 16 years with her. So get Hubby into this more and let him support you in physical form not just verbal form.Often times when our children are older, they will listen to Dad (the male) voice over Mom's. As babies mom was the comfort and most part the law maker, but as they turned to tweens, Dad's voice holds the law and authority...another reason why we have two parents in a home.
I like what the other response said also, limit her calls. you can do this! You are the parents who love her most. You are in for a battle, but hang tough. you are showing tough love at a tough time.

MNeedsHelp's picture
MNeedsHelp

Thanks Jellybeanlover, that's great advice. The three of us went in for a session together on Tuesday on the advice of the woman my daughter has been talking to, and I think it helped - it made me feel better anyway. It's better not to handle this kind of thing alone if you don't have to. Her cross country practice just started, so that will help her mood some. I think she is a bit depressed. Thanks for the support.

joannmckean's picture
joannmckean

Kids always mean it at the time, but time will heal this. You are a good parent or you wouldn't limit anything or even know what she's doing. I would consider blocking certain computer pages if you see the kind of messages that you mentioned. You can control what comes into your own home. I have cried in front of my kids and when you are hurt, you are hurt. It's not necessarily a weakness because your daughter needs to feel something when she hurts others and needs to see a response other than anger. There's so much anger out there! Cellphones are a privilege, computers are a privilege, even TV is a privilege. We have forgotten that in this electronic age. I have called off all video events in my house when I needed a type of grounding that hurt my kids and they had to find reading material. No leaving, no complaining...go do quiet reading or sitting.

momanddad's picture
momanddad

This message sounds so horribly familiar. My 16-year-old has most recently been making some bad choices. She has, for the most part, been a good student (A's and B's), plays sports, has a part-time job, and we have been active in our church. However,we have recently found cigaretts, caught her lieing about her whereabouts, and has recently been "reunited" with a past boyfriend who we forbade her to see.

I smelled smoke in my car after she had used it and I questioned her. She said she would never do that and that it was her friend who was smoking. WOW. She threw her friend right under the bus. After a lot of digging and a lot of lies/questions she admitted to smoking. She has since promised that she will not longer smoke. (??) Our questions was obviously, what would make her even want to smoke? Then, when she told me she had to work one night, it turned out she was not at work but hanging out with a friend(s). This particular friend has a boyfriend that I don't approve of (I had him in class a couple years ago and he has a reputation of shady friend, smokes, drinks, I would suspect has dont drugs (weed), and a low-achiever at school). Last night, after my dautgher got home, she told me that she was once again, seeing this boy from the past. She knew I would be upset and she was afraid to tell me. My two reactions were: I was in shock -- (this kid ended up at the alternative school, was arrested for selling drugs, recently got out of jail, grew up in a home where his parents encouraged and engaged in drinking and smoking pot with him, they had no running water....and the list just goes on), and I wanted to hug her and tell her I love her (which I did after I got control of my shock) I asked her how she became reacquainted with him and she said he is a friend of her girlfriend's boyfriend. And so now the past three weeks of this poor behavior has started to make sense. for the first time, I absolutely do not know what to do. My heart and my head are telling me 2 different things. I realize that not permitting this relationship could cause her to do unthinkable things, but I also realize that hanging out with a felon is not right. If someone could help me with this, I would so much appreciate it. I can't even funtion right now. The tears just keep on coming. Please help.

julie123's picture
julie123

Many parents go through a difficult time when their children are teenagers. It is also a very different time for them as well. Teenagers are having a difficult time with their identity. They are trying to understand their values, their goals and who and what they are in society. Your daughter is searching for her identity and by doing so, she is trying different things through different people. At this stage in her life she may become self absorb and selfish, does not care what she says or how she says it. Deep down you know that she loves you, and as a loving parent you also have to monitor her friends and be an authoritative parent. Be strick in your decisions, explain why she cannot hang out with these girls and try to keep the communication line open between yourself and your daughter. It is a challenge, but you can not give up your daughter. Give her a few years and she will see the err of her ways.

jeffyjoe44's picture
jeffyjoe44

This is heartbreaking to read. Please keep up the great work parenting your teen.