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DD totally fucked up her GCSEs. AIBU to tell her 'I told you so'?

(304 Posts)
TeenTwinsToddlerandTiaras Sun 25-Aug-13 21:01:31

Of course I won't but I am very, very cross about it. She got 2 Ds, 2 Es and 3 Fs FFS. All through secondary we have had problems with her being disruptive at school, getting detentions, calls about her not doing her homework or engaging with the lessons, getting into spats with other girls about stuff which did not involve her (sticking up for friends).

She was forecast for 3Cs, 2Ds and 3Es which was bad enough but we hoped she would get the extra C through the exams to get into the college course that she was so excited about doing and which we have supported her in doing even though I have my doubts (performing arts) but I wanted her to do something she enjoyed.

We have lectured her, given her 'pep talks', taken away privileges, shouted, screamed at her and now we have the end result - totally crap grades so she will not be able to do the college course she wanted to do and will have to spend the next year retaking as many as possible at a cost to us. I even frogmarched her to maths club one day as she was so behind but she refused to go again and I could'nt do that every bloody week. Ditto homework club/science club.

She has never been diagnosed with any SENs, her teachers have always stated that she is very bright and would do fine if she would just shut up and listen. She seems to have disengaged with reality and decided that she was going to become a singer/rapper so school was not important. She spends hours writing rap lyrics and listening to that bloody Iggy Azalea (most annoying songs ever). She has even insisted that she will be moving to LA as soon as she is 18 and do whatever it takes to become a 'sooperstarrr' hmm and I fully support her in that 'dream' and hope she can achieve it (not by moving to LA and living in the bins waiting to be discovered though grin) but she needs to at least get some qualifications first!

I could bloody shake her very hard. She thinks she knows everything. Aaaarrrrgggh. Any suggestions on what to do with her?

Eggsiseggs Mon 26-Aug-13 14:39:43

Ha ha Holla, it was quite an eye-opener!

Think the Maths teacher and I realised we had a better time at university than is strictly professional, though grin

I have come to the conclusion that maturity in teens is realising that you are responsible for your own outcomes in life. That is a scary and exciting realisation all at once, and this is what we should help our kids with.

It took me quite a while to realise that my lower-than-expected A Level grade wasn't all the 'shit teacher's fault': she was shit, but I didn't do anything to compensate for this in that subject (extra study, tell anyone, look for an alternative). So no matter how talented I am, I am always going to be beaten by the one who has talent and puts in the extra effort. (Voila MATURITY)

In fact, you can be surpassed by someone less talented than you who works harder or is more proactive.

Despite doing generally well, I never 'shone' until I was in my early twenties and half-way through a degree because I never really believed I could control my outcomes through my own efforts and decisions (Was much-loved, if a little mollycoddled, as a teenager!!!).

Have faith, OP. I can't help seeing an insecure girl here who is being defiant because she is confused and disappointed. Give her control, and present her with related options, not ultimatums, is my advice.

And drink some wine. Lots and lots of wine through that gritted teeth smile...

He11y Mon 26-Aug-13 15:46:37

My nice went to art college and she said she thought those who did the foundation year were better off.

Her first year was shared with some who had done the foundation year so were at the same level as her but they had a years experience under their belt.

She said they already knew all the jargon/teachers/classes/layout etc and had had a year to decide where their interests lay, so could just get on with it in the second year.

She kind of envied them for that.

ZolaBuddleia Mon 26-Aug-13 16:05:40

Ah, you see, the philosophy of 'work hard and you can be whatever you want' applies to a great many careers but not the following:


Unfortunately, the constant bullshit of 'I'm not putting you through because I just don't think you want it badly enough' that we see on telly talent shows just reinforces the lie.

I've worked in the industry for 20 years. So many successful performers are where they are purely because of 1) luck, and 2) looking the right way.

As a former lecturer of FE, I can tell you that even if your DD graciously accepts a place on the Level 2 course, you may not still get the golden GCSEs in Maths and English, as the college in question may only offer Essential Skills qualifications. Some universities do not accept these, and will only accept GCSE Maths and English. All this will be irrelevant to your DD of course, because by then she will have happened by sheer good fortune to have had a chance meeting with Will.i.am at South Mimms Service Station (see point 1 above) and he will have asked her to write a rap for his latest album. grin

AcrylicPlexiglass Mon 26-Aug-13 22:15:08

Tell your dd to watch the 1949 benefit programme on ch4 od. It features a 19 year old rapper wannabe!

Vivacia Tue 27-Aug-13 07:31:46

God know, that programme's premis and execution is horrible.

AcrylicPlexiglass Tue 27-Aug-13 07:34:56

It's shite in many ways but I smiled at seeing the teen rapper on it, remembering this thread. He released a single!

Vivacia Tue 27-Aug-13 09:51:07

I am cringing at the errors in my last post blush

MyNameIsSuz Tue 27-Aug-13 11:45:23

Maybe education just isn't for her. My (very bright) brother was like this, failed all but two of his and didn't get onto his college course. I forced him into a potwash job at the restaurant I was waitressing at while home from uni, they kept him on and eventually put him through chefing qualifications on the job. Now at 26 he's running his own kitchen (still with no GCSEs). It might just be that you need to find a different path.

toomanyfionas Tue 27-Aug-13 11:56:16

Oh god.

I know I shouldn't laugh but OP you describe it so well. I am unsure what to suggest for your dd but you my dear should have your own column. Not many people can write like this but readers love it. It is way more soothing to the fragile ego than tales of a high achiever.

My cousin was like this. Still is really. He has become semi famous but the riches aren't exactly flowing. He and his girlfriend, another would-be starlet, live with her mother and their dd in a one-bed flat. Heavily invested in social media. You get the picture.

BlueShirtBlueTie Tue 27-Aug-13 12:09:43

I know the law has changed so that you have to be in some form of education or training until 17 but surely she can still get an apprenticeship? That way she'd be working and earning money too and still might give her a dose of reality.

Fluffy1234 Tue 27-Aug-13 12:39:57

DS1 messed up school and GCSE's. I didn't do the 'i told you so'. He did some dead end jobs for three years before announcing he regretted mucking about at school and wanted to go to college. He ended up getting a BTEC in I.T and excellent job in a bank. He's now 24.

MamaTo3Boys Tue 27-Aug-13 12:48:52

She sounds like me when I was a teen lol. I messed up my GCSEs but I'm now a fully qualified teaching assistant for primary and secondary schools smile and i also did a re-sit for english and maths and now have an A* English and an A in maths. I'm 26 so it has come a little late i suppose but bearing in mind ive had 3 children whilst getting these qualifications. I think I've done pretty well smile.

LIZS Tue 27-Aug-13 13:04:38

tbh I think you need to take a step back . Only the reality of having no choices and advice of independent people will have any impact. Let the college say no and suggest options for next year. She wants the glory of performing but doesn't really sound that committed to getting the skills and practical experience to back it up. Had she flunked the academics but got other things to her credit that may open alternative courses. Without any serious substance or qualifications the outlook is fairly bleak. I suspect she would also become quite dispirited if she didn't make it easily and quick.

EldritchCleavage Tue 27-Aug-13 13:36:02

Or give help that is less directed at career and more about your DD. She sounds scared to try (friends, school, getting into music) and that is sad. It must be so difficult to get that perfect recipe of discipline and confidence-boosting. No concrete ideas from me, I'm afraid. The teenage years are a decade away for my two.

Wellwobbly Tue 27-Aug-13 16:19:54

It is a myth that 'it just happens' to superstars... and that education doesn't matter.

they have to put in a lot of effort and determination and persistance to get where they are.

Look at the ones who make it:

Brian May (Queen) PhD in nuclear physics or summat
All of the UB40 band were graduates of Royal College of Music
Robin Thicke - entertainment royalty, well educated
Kanye West - mum a professor
Mick Jagger - grammar school
David Bowie - grammar school

etc etc etc.

Clever, talented people and that is just the beginning.

The only one I can think of now who isn't, is Pharrell. He made it on his own. But not by being idle by working really hard.

EldritchCleavage Tue 27-Aug-13 16:43:33

Pharrell started N.E.R.D. at school with two friends and they slogged and slogged until they got somewhere.

DalePie Tue 27-Aug-13 18:19:22

I think the college rejecting her is a GOOD thing.

Take it from an old guy (Well 30 years old) who went back to uni that age doesn't matter, life is not over because of a few bad GCSE's.

The major problem here is that your DD has unrealistic expectations and is probably a bit lazy to boot.

If I were you I wouldn't keep your daughter in money terms and wouldn't try and find courses for her. If you do all the work then she has no investment in the issue and you will end up in a few years with the exact same problem is: poor grades.

I would basically say "do what you want", charge a little board for her room and food. Let her try and get a job and work in a dead-end position for a few years. That's of course of she can find a job!

I would also let her try and find her dream of stardom. Of course it's unlikely she will make it and the rejection will show her how harsh show business is away from the xfactor glitz and glamour!

In a weird way this could turn out to be a positive for your DD. Many young students (And I see many of them) are mollycoddled and come out of uni with no work experience and no idea how tough life can be outside the comfort of campus life.

And when your daughter, sick of her lack of decent employment and constant rejection one day says "I want to go back to college". That's the day you support her and offer her all the help in the world!


Wellwobbly Tue 27-Aug-13 19:34:28

Pharrell started N.E.R.D. at school with two friends and they slogged and slogged until they got somewhere. - thanks for the info, Cleavage! (great name)

EldritchCleavage Wed 28-Aug-13 15:04:03

Why thank you. Not many people get it.

cory Wed 28-Aug-13 16:36:52

Apprenticeship is not a bad idea; she needs to get looking though, as otherwise the LEA will come after her. The plan to let her do what she wants won't really work DalePie; it is no longer legal as she has to be in education or training/apprenticeship until age 17.

Am hoping that the silence from the OP means that she and her dd are busily working out Plan B.

AcrylicPlexiglass Wed 28-Aug-13 19:27:44

I bet the EWOs won't take much notice of a 17 year old out of school, tbh.

Dumpelstiltskin Tue 02-Aug-16 00:50:50

Wow, just came across this old thread. I am the OP.

As an update DD ended up doing 3 years at college (Level 2 and 3 BTEC in Performing Arts which she aced) retook her Maths and English GCSE's and is now due to start University in September in an unrelated field which should give her quite a few career options.

She has also held down a part time job in a major retailer for the last 18 months.

She still dreams of being a singer but finally listened to me and got some qualifications instead!

Dumpelstiltskin Tue 02-Aug-16 00:56:23

Not qualifications instead, qualifications first. I'm still rooting for her, she's a bloody good singer which of course I would say as her mother wink.

RememberToSmile1980 Tue 02-Aug-16 00:58:34

Well done to your daughter!

YokoUhOh Tue 02-Aug-16 00:58:54

Wow OP congrats to your DD on her hard work! And how nice to have an update on an old thread. Well done on persevering and supporting Her and good luck for the future flowers

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