DS 17 advice(18 Posts)
Hi My first post, would really like some advice, my mostly lovely 17 DS has been not coming home after parties, not answering her phone/texting back so i don't know where she is, i grounded her for two weeks after two nights of this and swearing at me, i allowed her to babysit for a friend round the corner during the two weeks, which turned out to be a lie, she was going to a party. i have talked to her about wanting to know where she is as i can't sleep otherwise, she agrees that is reasonable but then does it again. really not sure what to do?
She's 17 and wants a bit of independence. Two out of my four children were living in Uni halls at 17 and they could go a week without calling me or answering texts. I think you're being unfair in grounding her. Let her grow up for goodness sake she's 17 not 7.
When I was 17 i was clubbing regularly a d attending parties. Staying out at friends houses and very very late at my then boyfriends house....sometimes until we could prize ourselves apart at 2/3 am. My parents gave me a lot of freedom and didn't take the piss. I kept them updated by text and always made sure I had my phone handy to reply to them proptly. I understand your daughter has agreed she can see your pov about worrying but it's about give and take. She wants to spread her wings and be an independent young woman. Holding on too tightly will make her run further at the first opportunity
I think you could take a step back here.
It can be a tricky thing, moving from being a parent of kids to being a parent of nearly-adults/adults.
Do you have the kind of relationship where you could say that to her - admit that you might have over reacted and that you need to negotiate the next phase of your relationship together - as a team?
She needs to be independent but it's also necessary to have adult consideration for each other too. If you were going to stay out all night, would you let her know where you were and what time you'd be back out of politeness? If so, she can be expected to extend that politeness to you.
It worked with mine but I did have to resist the temptation to be too nosey about the details.
You can't expect her to keep texting you and telling you exactly where she is. My DD has just turned 18 and is rarely in the house, all I ask her now is should I make her dinner or not and to let me know if she's staying out all night. I sleep better that way as I'm not waiting for the sound of a cab at 4am. It's an adjustment but they need to make their own way in the world.
Is it possible you might be able to sit her down and explain that for her to be treated like the young adult she is, that she needs to act as one?
It isn't a pleasant world out there, and whilst you are happy for her to have some independance you would really like to know where she is/ who she is with. But you must promise that when she tells you who/where and when she will be back you will leave her to it.
Set some boundaries, and make sure she knows what is expected of her.
She shouldn't have a problem working with these kind of boundaries, you just want to know she is safe, other than that it's her business.
She can stay out as much as she likes, but you have a right to know whether or not to expect her home.
Would it kill her to send a text?
The swearing is another matter. I hope she can do her own washing/ironing/ shopping/cooking and get around on her own because she'd get nothing from me if she was swearing at me.
At 17 she's on the threshold of adulthood. She still needs you to be there for her as a support but she also needs to be spreading her wings. It really isn't appropriate to ground her.
Having reread your OP, I'm not sure if this is a younger sister you're talking about. Whatever the relationship, you really need to back off, you can't ground a 17 year old.
I agree you need to step back but she needs to be considerate enough to simply send a text to say she won't be home.
I used to have to wander about finding telephone boxes at her age, to let my parents know I wouldn't be home.
It's common courtesy.
I agree your DD is just trying to exert her independence, so maybe you need to take a step back and allow her some freedom (for me, the degree of freedom does to some extent depend on the 17 year old involved though- some a more mature and capable than others).
On the other hand, I don't think it unreasonable that you have a general idea of where she is going/when she is expected back- i.e. "I am going to a party tonight and I will be back late" or that DD text or call to say she is going to be back later than expected/staying over at friends or whatever.
If she agrees to let you know, but then does not keep up her end of the bargain, then I think it acceptable to review things- if she is not mature enough to stick to the agreements she has made, then she is not mature enough to stay out late etc.
Finally, swearing at you is just not on- no matter how annoyed she is. So for that, she does deserve some punishment. Also lying to you about where she is not ok and again, she needs to know that there will be consequences for not behaving responsibly.
In summary, there needs to be a bit of give and take on both sides- you need to relax and start letting her have more freedom and she needs to start acting more responsibly by letting you know if she is going to be out late and keep you updated if plans change.
Thank you for your messages, just to clarify as i didn't go into a lot of detail last night in first post, the staying out all night and not letting us know where she is is not just the last two nights it has been a recurring thing, the two nights were consecutive, i find it very worrying when i have no idea where she is until she comes home the next day at four in the afternoon, I resorted to grounding as a last resort, ds has masses of freedom, works hard and parties hard, all i ask of her is that she lets me know where she is and if not coming home where she is staying, I don't want a running report of the night. I had very little boundaries/parenting from the age of fourteen upwards, when I did live with a family at sixteen and there were fair house rules ect I felt safe, cared for and happy.
Could you clarify who she is, OP? Is she your daughter or your sister? Only round here, DS is normally a son.
and if she wasn't living with me but at uni obviously that is different.
I don't think what you are asking is unreasonable, especially nowadays when all she'd have to do is send a quick text saying "Out for the night, see you tomorrow" (specifying where she is seems a bit OTT). I'd expect similar off anyone one I was living with and cared about ( in my family I mean, not a lodger).
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