I'm so worried about my 17 year old...(10 Posts)
I'm so worried about my 17 year old daughter! She has chosen to leave home without my consent. She has completely cut us off. She won't answer my telephone calls, my text messages and has now blocked myself and our family on Facebook. I have no way of knowing one day to the next how she is! She has had mental health issues in the past.
To top it all, she is staying with a family that, in my eyes, is completely unsuitable - their eldest has attempted suicide and self harms. The mother has been in trouble with the police for bullying another 17 year old girl.
I'm at my wits end! SS can't do anything because of my daughter's age and the police only check the physical environment.
Does anyone have any suggestions??
Sorry, I have never been through anything like this but didn't want to leave your post unanswered.
I think all that you can do is keep in touch with her, by text or however you usually do, and let her know that you are home and very much hoping that she will stay safe and come back when she is ready. You could let her know that you love her and that you are worried about her, so you would love to hear from her just to know that she is safe and ok.
And take a lot of deep breaths, try to stay calm and be there ready for her when she wants to come back to you.
Sorry if that isn't much help, but big hugs to you. Hope things work out ok.
Do you know any of her other friends who are on FB with her? Could you speak to them (or to their parents) and ask them to keep you updated so that you know she's alright?
I think you need to back off and stop chasing her, and hope that when you back off she will come back to you.
There must be a reason for this - but badgering her to give you that reason won't work.
If you know where she works/goes to school, I would write her a letter. Don't make it about you (I'm upset that you did ..../The family are hurt that you....), don't accuse her of anything, don't cry or gnash your teeth or try to make her feel guilty.
Just write a relatively lighthearted letter, saying you hope she is ok, that you love her an miss her, that you are sorry you have both been fighting and arguing, that you accept she is old enough to make her own decisions, but that you hope she will consider getting in touch and letting you know she is ok. And that your house is always there, no questions asked, if she decides to come back.
Then go on to practicalities; does she need money, would she like to arrang to collect some of her stuff, that type of thing.
As I said, keep it light and positive. It is the very hardest thing to do wtih our children; to back off and let them make the most awful mistakes, but sometimes it's the only way. If she isn't putting all her energy into fighting with you, she might have more time to think about what she is doing.
And what you mustn't do is drive such a wedge that she feels she can't come back, that she will dig her heels in and stay away for fear that you will say "I told you so".
It's tough. Hang in there.
Thank you for your comments.
I have backed off and not contacted her for 2 weeks now to give her some space. She collected all her belongings about 4 weeks ago. I have regularly put money in her bank account every week.
I have now received a letter from Child Maintenance Service stating that myself and my ex husband must pay maintenance and the lady she is staying with has claimed the child benefit and tax credits.
Can they do that? I would have thought they'd have to apply through the courts for legal guardianship and/or an official change of address.
I think you need legal advice on the money issue, but I'd be inclined to write back to Child Maintenance and state that you are still legally responsible for her, you have a home available to her, you are giving her money. Don't give money or sign forms in favour of a complete stranger unlsss you are forced to.
I have spoken to a solicitor who said that morally it is wrong but legally she can do it! I have appealed to CMS and they are only interested in my salary so they can do the correct calculations.
This has been going on for a few months and I've tried to be strong but it's getting too much, hence posting on here for some moral support!
My local MP is involved now and he suggested setting up a petition which we have done but not sure what good it will do. The potential is there to exploit our young adults for money and who knows what else!
I have got another thread on here with the petition on if you are interested xx
Is she still in education or training? If she's dropped out of school then child benefit will stop. If you think that's the case you could inform the child benefit office. I'm with you that I might be prepared to give DD money but I'd be horrified at paying it to another adult that I don't want her living with. Agree with MaryZ, keep writing to CMS telling them that as far as you are concerned, her home is with you and therefore you will not be paying anyone else maintenance. Try to keep the money wrangling separate from your relationship with DD, just as you would try to do in a divorce. I second the idea of keeping in touch by text if you still can, just breezy short messages without expecting an answer. What's exDH position on it all? Really feel for you.
Yes she attends college. I've been told if I don't pay then my employers will be contacted to deduct my earnings. I can't afford for that to happen as I'm an accountant.
I have no idea on my ex's position on this as we barely communicate.
Huge loophole in the law from what I can make out xx
No real good advice, but she is 16 and able to leave home without consent of you, just be there for her and if she wants to return home then welcome her back, if not then thats on her
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