Mom2Teens's picture
Mom2Teens

Need advice on how teen daughters talk to me at times.

Hello! I am the mother of two teenage daughters, ages 13 and 15 1/2. They are essentially wonderful and very smart girls. Both are straight-A students, both are in National Honor Society, and both are making good choices so far in most things that they do. Here's my problem.....do you ever feel as a parent that your teens talk to you like you are a mere annoyance or nuisance to their lives? Do your teens get borderline nasty and ridiculous tones in their voices and use these tones so much that it hurts your feelings as a parent? This is how I feel a lot of the time. I go out of my way for my kids and I'm always here for them. Why they like to be mean and nasty with things they say or the way they say them is beyond me. I feel like nothing I choose to do, even things for myself, are ever "accepted" by my daughters. For instance, I added photos of one of our dogs onto my Facebook account today and my older daughter informed me that doing this is "so lame and stupid." She then said "that's craziness, mom, like just weird and dumb." Why is that weird and dumb? I mean...really?

Then not but 2 minutes later, my 13 year old and a friend are looking to do a Scavenger Hunt and want our 15 year old to create a list so they can do the hunt outside. My 15 year-old spells "Scavenger Hunt" completely wrong so I looked at the paper and gently brought it to her attention and told her what she mis-spelled. Her response was..."Geeez Mom, like so what. Nobody cares how I spell and nobody will. I don't care so just move on." I turned around and said that a straight-A student should care about spelling things correctly and certainly when she's older, people will assume she's inept if she can't spell things the right way. She rolled her eyes, refused to change it, and then left the room. I wanted to put a size 7 shoe right up her rear at that moment! This same daughter also took a very beautiful picture of myself off the wall in our den and started criticizing it to death just before her boyfriend was coming over to our house to watch a movie with her. This really got under my skin because the picture is 100% gorgeous and it almost came across to me as her being jealous of it. I know that seems weird but if you were here, you would have picked up on that feeling too. Needless to say, I ignored her rant and put the picture right back on the wall where it has always been. Sorry....but I'm not getting voted off the wall for a 15 year old meltdown that I thought was nasty and very random!

Am I being too sensitive to what my kids say and do? How do you all handle this from your own teens or am I all alone in this wonderful and frustrating position? What should I do when these girls act nasty, ridiculous, and downright mean at times? How do I respond to nastiness when it revolves around something that I chose to do and that I don't feel is anywhere near weird or stupid? I certainly don't deserve to be spoken to this way....or I don't think I do. Any ideas how to cut them off from thinking that they can say stuff like this and have the lesson be tactful and productive? HELP!!!!



GirlsMom's picture
GirlsMom

I wanted to bring this discussion full circle and let everyone know how thankful I was for the support and to hear that I'm not the only one going through this with my teenager. I finally hit a massive wall with my daughter and something had to give. Since I am always the "giver", I decided it was high time to call her bluff and lay down some law as to how I will be spoken to from here on out. I am human, not a robot, not a servant, and certainly not some emotionless zombie. I am a mother. When my daughter started up with the usual tirade, I quickly came after her, grabbed her arm, whirled her around and put her right into a chair at the kitchen table and told her to "park it". I then asked her when it was okay to talk to me in a disrespectful and ridiculous tone. Before she could answer that, my reply to her was...."how about NEVER!" I then proceeded to tell her that if she wants to tango with me on attitude, nasty mouth, and an exasperated tone, she will get the same in return from me! I told her that a mature and well put together teenager doesn't need to rival the likes of a three year old toddler and that if she was going to have teenage tantrums, drama, and speak to me out of character....she was in for the ride of her life because I will punish her for every infraction I see or hear that reeks of disrespect to me or anyone else. I will also make her correct the tone, aplogize for it, and she will lose privileges for whatever time I see fit until her maturity level increases and the toddler outburst syndrome is gone. I then unplugged this kid for 5 days. Yup...took the cell phone, the house phone, the computer, the TV, the flat-iron, and anything else that went beep, zing, or zap! Five long days in the pokey with nothing and no one! It was so rough that on one of the last days of the "unplugged" grounding, I found her playing Magnetix with her little sister because that's about all she could access! OMG!!! It was a God-send! The house was quiet, peaceful, everything got done, and moreover....no nasty mouth, huffing and puffing, or back-talk! When punishment was nearing an end, my husband and I called her into a family summit meeting and told her that the minute she reverts back to any "old ways" or nasty habits with the mouth, five days of her life will get "unplugged" once again. Slip up during the grounding and we will add another day to the misery as well. I then left her with the reminder that if that mouth ever opens and challenges me in a condescending or disrespectful way again, I will purposely find a good time to exhibit bad behavior of my own when all of her friends are front and center. She knows by now that I am an outgoing and well-liked parent by all of her friends and that if I want to stir up the pot, I will bring it to a roaring boil! You get what you give...and that's that! The look on her face was priceless because for once in her teenage life she figured out that messing with the Mom might not turn out as she had planned. She understood us 100%. Here's the good news......I just regained the power of being a parent and I stole it from a 16 year old GIRL! Why? Because I am her mother and I love her. Love sometimes does not come gift wrapped with chocolates and a balloon. Love can be tough. Take back the control, ladies. Sticks and stones may be thrown at our bones but teenage mouths can never hurt us! Dig deep, sit that kid down and command a presence. Sometimes you have to fight fire with fire!

2xstepmom's picture
2xstepmom

Now that's what I'm talking about!!!!!! Did the same with my daughter when she was 15, we've been friends since.

GirlsMom's picture
GirlsMom

Thank you for the accolades 2XStepMom! Ain't it beautiful? I scared the poop out of this kid and things have been fine ever since. I think she lacked the "fear". And I mean that in a good way....like fearing that if I acted like her infront of her friends, it could be a social suicide for life! Thanks for the encouragement. I'm laughing my Evil Mom laugh right now! BBBWWWWWAAAAAAHHHAAAHAHA!