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Feel ive come right back down with a bump..

(46 Posts)
gabyjane Thu 18-Apr-13 13:18:26

I'm starting a new post..partly because things haven't progressed but i need to deal with one particular point and two i want to log whats going on.

Basically dd hasn't been happy living with me since i left her (step) dad. I got a new partner who shall we say she hates BUT this has calmed down and there is no involvement between them and hasnt been for a long time..she does her bits with me and he stays out of her way as such. My ex is constantly telling me to get my current partner to move out as blames us being together as to why shes like she is, but dd has been on hols with us etc shes just decided she doesnt like him and feels like she is betrying her dad which is understandable.

Things were ok plodding along but lately dd seems to have got quite moody again like teenagers do, however with this is the rudeness, the swearing and the now ignoring me. As some of you know i im a childminder and she is not allowed in the house while im working. This was partly due to her wanting to be out later but i will not have my job jepordised. This has worked ok but the new things i am trying to deal with are..

In the hols Dd text me to say if i didnt let her home early she would report me to SS..apparantly it's illegal to make her stay out till late (she asked and was agreed to come in at 7pm) 90% of the time she is late so i said no i needed time to clean up after work (as she wont do anything to help) and she wanted to stay out (threatened not to come back on time in the past). This was ok and she does come back at 7 but more and more its getting later.

Next prob is she wants to live with here dad. He has said no as not enough room ( he has a friend lodger) but when this lodger has gone she can move in. I said no but maybe we could compromise on shared care may work..i have been asked for CSA, tax credits, child ben, portion of wages etc despite him never giving me a penny..this started a huge row at the weekend and i told him she was not living with him, She was so rude to me shouting at me despite seeing i was upset telling me he had told her stuff about me etc and he was always right. I called him and he told me to deal with it on my own. I decided i was banging my head against a wall so calmed myself down and calmly asked her to do the washing up. She said no..i left her and returned 10 mins later and asked her again, she was on her mobile to someone (her dad pays for this and she thinks she is invincible with it)..she shooed me out and i asked her how long she would be on the phone..she said 'get out' to which i said 'i want you do do it you do nothing else youve got 15 mins on the phone' to which she said 'what you going to do about it'..i said 'take your phone off you' she said 'if you come anywhere near me ill tell everyone you hit me' i was in shock and walked out very upset she could be like this.

For those of you that watch coronation street you will know there is a story line on there similar (that i shouldnt have watched last night) BUT as far as im aware dd doesnt watch it (unless at her dads). I want to just try and drum in how much damage it could do me but am scared the more i say the more i might give her ideas so have tried to keep my distance from her.

Ideas please as feeling really down today as to how to deal with this now.

gabyjane Thu 18-Apr-13 14:30:50

natasha i can hes not her real dad. I know she will trun it round but all thats important is i do love her and want her here i just need back up from her dad (something SS said to him was clearly obvious he didnt do) and her to calm down a bit.

asinine yeah basically thats the gist of it. She gets away with anything at dads of course shes going to want to live there. yes happy at school..happy for everyone else but me..i have friends who see her about, shes always laughing etc, teachers say good etc although report not great due to homework (dad took this on so was cross) i dont have much of a punishment system in place as she doesnt allow me to do anything with her and ignores most of what i say.So if i say 'right were not going shopping tomorrow' she wont care as knows dad will do it instead.

What do i want to happen..i want her to cheer up and stop being so horrible to SS said she has a good life and gets most things. I suggested the shared care as a compromise for her sake although not ideal it may help us regain our relationship.

Yes i am very upset and sorry i didnt clarify more

gabyjane Thu 18-Apr-13 14:35:26

tumbleweeds yes first bits all correct
I am not going against what she wants in terms of her dad HE has said he cant have her due to a lodger and wont do shared care just full care if i pay for her
i agree its a snowball thats getting out of hand but yes he is more appealing and loves and knows it so im stuck
Ive tried talking to her many many times..i get 'but xxx has told me your lying' 'well he doesnt make me' sigh

ExitPursuedByABear Thu 18-Apr-13 14:35:36

Where is her real father in all this?

CarpeVinum Thu 18-Apr-13 14:35:50

BUT she was fine with it at the time

She was 12/13 love. Her life changed radically in a short space of time. Not verbalising issues with parental decisions at that age is fairly normal, it doesn't necessarily follow that she was fine with it.

It's done now, so there is nothing you can do to change it, but if it does come out at some point that she has resentments or issues with the time frame it might be best to acknowledge any belief she may have that wasn't made enough of a priority at that time rather than getting defensive about it. Sometimes being heard and having past pain recognised and apologised for can go an awfully long way in terms of lowering the temersture and starting a healing process.

It's good that you set up things with her step dad for when she can't come home due to her behavoir. I take that means you don't have any issues with her being in his care ? In which case, might it not be worth giving deeper considerstion to her request to live with her step dad ?

If it is being done to prod you, then you have called her bluff and nutralised yourself against a repetition in the future. Especially if you let her go on the understanding that ipshe is welcome back if it isn't what she expected.

If it isn't a prod, perhaps without the constant heat generated by living together the pair of you can get to a point where you are able to rebuild your mutual trust and appreciation for each other ?

I played a game with my parents, insisting on going to live with my paternal grand parents. They let me go on the priviso that there would be no pay back if I felt I wanted to come home again. The grandparents i n this case were very much in on the game playing and I can understand why initially my parents resisted being arsed around by two people old enough to know better than choosing to go point scoring with a volotile teenager as the weapon of choice.

I lasted at the grandparents a week and it totally took that spanner out of my teenage toolbox from that point onwards. Worse, my parents were so fecking reasonable with no finger pointing or told you sos when I came home too. Really annoying when you are desperate to see and jump up and down at every single one of your parents flaws, historical and current, and they ruin it by going around being disgustingly reasonable and uncritisable. grin

TumbleWeeds Thu 18-Apr-13 14:37:01

Then I would use a very different strategy. Stop trying to deal with er as a child (punishment, telling her what she can and can't do).
She is obviously a nice girl who can behave in the outside world so she knows the 'rules' of good behaviour. She doesn't need to learn them iyswim?

So what about having a chat and talking to her as an adult and finding solutions both of you together on how to best live together?

Perhaps letting go on 'chores' and 'housework' for a bit would help reducing tension and make for a better atmosphere before a talk like this too?

ExitPursuedByABear Thu 18-Apr-13 14:38:40

Sorry. Ignore my question. It sounds rude and was not meant to be.

Asinine Thu 18-Apr-13 14:39:19

It's clearly a very complicated situation you are all in. In simple terms she must want to be at yours or else she would have moved in with stepdad already, unless he doesn't really want her there and the lodger is a convenient excuse. She is still at yours and you are still trying to engage with her, although she isn't giving much back. Do you think she knows that you love her and you want her there? I can imagine it would be hard to say those things when she's swearing at you.

Also have you looked at maryz s teenage threads, she's full of wisdom?

gabyjane Thu 18-Apr-13 14:43:30

maybe not but we are 3 years down the line now and im sorry but the way she is, ok with it when shes getting what she likes/wants holidays etc doesnt work with friends and family says she knows how to play me. I have said i am happy for her to stay at her dads but he has a lodger?
I dont punish her anymore and havent for a while now as she does what she likes. As for chores well this weekend was the first time shes done them in 3 months..i know that as she asked me where something was and thats how long weve lived here as not long moved.

gabyjane Thu 18-Apr-13 14:45:58

it is very complicated and i know that i am very sympathetic to friends and family have all tried to talk to her, take her out etc but she refuses and i think sees it as me trying to win her over but i just feel for her. I do know its not easy for her but need to focus on whats to be done. She is not the first child to have a new parent in the house as such and as hard as that is she needs to try and compromise like we have all tried.

DwellsUndertheSink Thu 18-Apr-13 14:46:03

OP, I think you need to have an adult conversation with her. Maybe explain the reality that you cannot have her swearing in front of your mindees, as they a) will repeat bad words and b) their parents may decide that you are not a suitable minder....and that means losing money.

Get her onboard and let her know that she can be at home without the swearing. Teenagers love a bit of drama, and you telling her she cannot come home would be A grade drama fuel to the "oh my life is so awful" fire.

Id suggest a bit of love bombing for you and her. Put her first. Go shopping, go for lunch, go to a movie. find out more about her and her likes and plans for the future. Make a regular Saturday date with her to do stuff you both like. Build a relationship with her away from your partners.

CarpeVinum Thu 18-Apr-13 15:00:20

I have said i am happy for her to stay at her dads but he has a lodger?

That could work to your advantage.

Maybe you could tell your daughter snd your ex you have no wish to deprive her of living with her step dad if that is what they both want. Explain they have this "lodger infested" period to mull it over and work put together what ground rules they'd like to set with each other. Explain that given the slow and irritating nature of beurocracy it would be best if they do a six week trial before anything offical, like benefits and offical residency gets changed so nobody feels like "wheels have been set in motion" and they can't change their mind if it doesn't turn out like they had hoped.

Six weeks isn't an unreasonable amount of time to ask both of them to risk something, be it making a mistake and having to shunt everything back home again, or not having specific benefits paid to cover additional costs.

There could be some instant benefical outcomes just from putting that on the table. She might be so distracted getting ready to move that she forgets to fight with you so the relationship between gets change to heal in thenkicked bitd. She (or he) might suddenly get the wind taken out of their sails and have to really think twice about the personal cost of making a point.

The bigger risk may be that he lets her down. And that would be hard on her. But the demise of him as her whiteknight and you as the dark force of all things evil to teens could have postivie ramifications, especially if it can be an opportunity for her to turn to you and get support in her loss.

I'm not saying it is an easy or risk free thing to do, but when she turns 16 all the control gets taken out of your hands and if there is a chance of letting her take flight while you can still offer a crash landing, it might be worth a punt.

Is is possible to get family councelling via the NHS in the UK ? I was thinking what might be useful via that kind of serive is some kind of mediated discussion between you and her, to get to the heart of the matter with a referee to stop things sliding into mutual accusations. Is that an option ?

gabyjane Thu 18-Apr-13 16:36:47

I will try to answer all bits i can

Ive talked with her till the cows come home with both her and my ex. We used to have regular catch ups at his so i could see how she was getting on at his too BUT now he replies 'sigh' to the mere thought of me going round and dd just got to the point of being rude and he would let her so i ended up leaving upset wondering why ide bothered. He tells dd im a drama queen and to me that i should just trust her and let her do what she likes etc (we have had other issues in the past) Like i said only this sat i asked her to sit down to talk to her and she got up after 2 mins saying 'your lying ive been told different'..

Ive tried the love bombing again as already said like this weekend she went out the door and had him waiting outside so? I called him no reply as my day and text replies for 2 hours by which point i was seething which is why ita ll blew up again. When we moved in here i offered to take her for some new bits for her room, shes always busy or says she doesnt want to go?

The lodger is tricky, its one of his friends who my dd likes so thats appealing too. He also has his G/f stay and she loves her so all in all its a great place to go. I have told her he had said she couldnt live there due to him but she has told me he has said soon the friend is leaving so she can move in BUT this is when i got the text r.e csa etc..its not about the money and the main point is her happiness BUT why should i pay him to have her when i dont want her to go and he has never helped me out? there are no rules in his house and he doesnt agree with them, he tells me she is good as gold and does everyhing to help etc..shame she doesnt in our house.

We actually tried a few months back her staying with him. It lasted 2 weeks and the end result was him chucking her out at 9pm (shes told me its illegal for me to not let her in before dark and would report me) yet if i speak to her about it now and it possibly happening again if she lived with him she defends him, he realised what she was like at the time as basically he thought it was ok to 'let her do what she likes and stop treating her like a child' and she didnt come home, hung up every time he called etc and he lost the plot with her. She rung me and came home and seemed to get back on track for a while but soon realised how to keep on his good side so things have changed again. He was the one who rung SS for help with her.

We sound like awful parents between us but we do both love her i just need my ex to get on with his life and leave me alone when he sees her as not doing her any good and know if he backed me at times she would do as shes told. Like friends have said that knew him, he only wants to punish me and can only do that through dd.

When she turns 16 does it make a difference hes not her biological dad?

Oh and in responce to her real dad, he left her when she was 2 weeks old and she hates him (hes sent her messages on FB)

Have tried councilling route. She refuses point blank to speak to anyone and my ex says its me wth the problem. I did manage to get school to speak to her which she did but afterwards she told me she lied to them so she didnt have to talk again. I looked into a popular one (cant think of name) was £40 an hour so asked my ex to go halves or help me and he refused.

gabyjane Thu 18-Apr-13 21:02:37

Ok someone please honestly tell me what your feelings are on this.

Dd came in from school, she looked a little sullen (normally walks in fine) i asked her had she had a good day as normal etc and she sat straight down and said she felt sad (think she must have known i was on here as NEVER does she do things like this) I asked her why and she said she didn't know. I said she must and ran through a few things, we both had tears.

Was it my partner
Is it because shes said somethings she maybe shouldnt
Is it because she wanted to move in with me asking if she

The conversation went on and i felt we were getting somewhere but it soon went to the point where i had and still have no idea what she wants as kept changing her mind. She says theirs nothing to do in the house..i said pc, tv, what do other kids have? nothing less than her dads and she always wants to be out. Tried to encourage activitys but shes dropped out of them.

Basically what i know she wants now is:

She does want to live with her dad as he lets her come and go as she pleases.
She doesnt have to do anything there
He respects her

That was it. I got upset and she asked me why i was crying..i said i was so sad about some of the stuff she'd said and how i was sorry ide upset her but couldnt turn the clock back, that i dont want her to go but want her to be happy and surely we could compromise. I offered to get her a key cut and she can come and go as she pleases..this isnt good idea why, completely lost.

She could stay out later but not every night as homework had to be done and ide of course like to spend some time with her...this wasn't ok as she wouldnt know which nights she would be out and her dad didnt ask her.

I would expect her to do some chores as does her dad but she said no to this

He respects her?? I told her he doesnt really see her and i dindt know what she meant and she wouldnt elaborate.

So honestly tell me is this the way our kids live now..they just pop in and out when they feel and we feed them when they wish? I'm upset and angry and at a complete loss. I have told her i think the next course is talking to dad and seeing what he suggests..first she said she hadn't done so (although at the weekend she had) but then she said she had and his g/f had, had some soon as i mentioned her not a good idea being involved she snapped. Ideally i guess if i HAVE to i will agree shared care but im so so sad that she can dislike me so much to want to leave me.

I spoke to her about tonight being our night and i always try to do something..shes in her room now having declined. I have said saturdays are our day too and she has said thats her only day with friends (although she wants to be out every night till 9)..sigh

CarpeVinum Thu 18-Apr-13 21:58:27

My feelings are that as knacekred and hurt and confused as you probably feel, this evening wasn't the total washout you believe it to be.

You let her know

a) you are willing to take her feelings into consideration and be flexible in your personal preferneces in order to put words into action.

b) you acknowledged the past may have caused hurt and left the door open for that to be on the table if she wants to talk about how she feels at another time.

c) you showed you were concerned not just at any upset her behavoir causes the family, but at what is the root cuase, as in what does she want, what are her motivations, is she having a problem.

d) you demonstrated you understood she wasn't a child any more but an almost young adult and put "soon to be adult" concessions on the table with a key to the home, and that demonstrates trust. It shows you haven't written her off as useless or undependable.

I don't think Rome is going to be built in a day. This could well be a case of wash, rinse repeat ad nauseum, with a sense of 2 steps forward, 1 step back. Her dad seems to accidentally or on purpose undermining you. It would be much better if he could put his own feelings aside and focus on his dusghter's evident need to understand where her boundries are so she can feel safe and ring fenced in her darker moments by a united parental front. That will be an ongoing issue that will make things harder than they might otherwise have been, unless somebody (the social worker? school pastoral officer ?) can persuade him that he is hurting his daughter far more than he is hurting you by not making her the priority.

I wouldn't worry too much about the respect thing. I have a feeling that the word, as defined by a dictionary, bears little resemblance to what it has come to mean to much younger people. It appears to have a certain flexibility where it takes on a chamelon like ability to be whatever the speaker wants it to be when they wish to complain or get demanding without having to defend the details of their angst. That sort of linguistic generation gap is as old as the hills and I think it's a language barrier that will keep on rolling as long as the human race does.

I think the fundamental thing is, don't give up. Don't stop setting boundries and having expectations, becuase a lot of kids come to see that as a lack of care. Keep on offering reasonable compromises. Take any professional input on the table if it's offered (councelling etc) and remember that she won't be 15 forever. Even if you don't get much fruit for all your knackering gardening over the next year or so, knowing you went to bat for her will likely mean an enourmous amount when she grows up a little and returns to a state of "not a teenager anymore" resonableness.

And take some time for you too. This sort of constant conflict can be exhusting, frustrating and seemingly endless. I think teen related drama and crisis in particular can make an adult feel like they are trapped in some godawful never ending soap opera where everybody has a script except them. Can you and your partner carve put a bit of time now and again to just simple quiet stuff together, like take a walk and talk about anything and everything other than family stuff ?

Tortington Thu 18-Apr-13 22:07:10

;etting her do what she wants - isn't what she wants - or needs. she doesn't consciously know this.

I would not jeopardise my children for my job.

i would have structure like this

dd should come home from school - about 4pm, get changed, have a chat with you, eat together as a family even with other charges there. if at 15 they then want to go out - fine.

in her shoes leaving at 7.30 am and not being allowed in my own home would feel like abandonment. and it would make me feel sad.

I have and continue to have my fair share of rubbish parenting moments, but yours takes the biscuit, and that you can't see that this is unhealthy, is troubling

Asinine Thu 18-Apr-13 22:29:47

It's good you managed to talk tonight, tears on both sides tells me you were genuinely connecting. As carpe said it will take time, but she does need to know you care, and no boundaries at 15 is not a good idea. Try again tomorrow.

gabyjane Sat 20-Apr-13 10:21:28

Thanks for the replies.

She is so so hard to work out and the eratic moods are just..well im speechless (ok last night, today awful). We went to my sisters last night..she did end up coming with me even though she said she wouldnt and was ok. We got stuck in a massive traffic jam so were in the car for 2 hours together. She kept asking questions about my partner saying things like 'hes quiet when im at home' you dont seem like you get on'..i told her the reason we were not all over each as such was for her benefit and not to upset her..she said it woudn't ad her dad di it with his gf. And yes we had a great relationship but when she wasn't there as we were trying to put her first and not upset her.

BUT we were supposed to be going shopping today..planned last week but she obviously hadnt listened to me as when i told her last night what time we were going she said 'ive made plans' this went back and forth and turns out her dad asked her to go out with him and gf 2 weeks asking me or seeing if she was busy. While i was dropping the kids off she took my phone and tried to text him..i said if she wanted to speak to him she could call him, she said she'd do it when we got where and would be going outside? I said you can do it now (as thought something was going on) anyway she called him and turns out her, her dad, gf and kids are all out for the day yet no one told me. I was driving and saying it's my da whcih i think he knew upset me so blatently just said its ok ill pick you up etc..I told her i was cross that i seemed to get blamed for not making the effort yet when i have she takes no notice. I got upset and she didnt seem to care. Shes walked out this morning to have her nice family day and doesnt care shes just left me here. So cross with her dad but get no replies or if i do sarcastic ones..feel like im not getting anywhere. Should i contact him about'd be suprised what reply i get if i do but dont know how to word it.

gabyjane Sat 20-Apr-13 10:24:01

Custardo..should i give up work then because dd doesnt like being around young children? She is 15 so i dont expect her to be BUT what i will not condone is the language she uses..the older kids have commented in the past she is moody and rude..its my job as well as my partner i should give up too is it?

And your wrong i do know and see what is going on and find it very upsetting..part of the reason im on here and why im always upset.

cory Sat 20-Apr-13 21:31:13

"I dont know any of my friends who have children this age who spend time with them nevermind with my job,"

That is one of the saddest things I have ever read. sad

Did you really mean it or were you just expressing your frustration at a difficult situation?

Everybody I know spends time with their teens, even if they find them very difficult.

(My dd has MH problems so I know how exhausting constant mood swings can be)

startlife Sun 21-Apr-13 10:40:06

Your situation is so similar to my dsd . Her mum's marriage to her dsd's stepdad ended a couple of years ago and the new partner moved in within 4 months. Initially dsd appeared ok but in the last year she has become very unhappy at home and now wants to come and live with us (dh & me).

So much has changed for her and it seems her mum just doesn't appreciate how much has been negative change for DSD. She has had to cope with losing her stepfather (low contact now), she had had another man move into her house at an age when she feel uncomfortable. Her mum is focussed on the new partner (natural when a new couple start living together) and she has felt unloved and unheard. DSD doesn't like the way her mum has changed since the new partner has moved in. The new relationship has been rushed and none of the children have had the time to properly adjust.

Year 10 is an very important school year and whilst DSD is bright she has been overwhelmed by the work required. This is a time when she needs more support at home.

I am shocked that you considered the 7pm rule - on a practical point someone needs to be around to help teens at this age with homework and continuity is important. I assume she has been doing GCSE prep for subjects such as English. We have spent so much time with DSD helping her through school work.

I agree with others - my DSD likes to spend time with us, sure it's not all the time and friends are important but she is happy to sit on the sofa and chat, we cook, shop and do stuff together.

DSD's mum thinks DSD is being grumpy and is unreasonable but from the outside I see why their relationship has gone down hill.

We have arranged counselling for DSD and she has found this helpful. Could you look into this for your daughter? I also recommend that you make time for her. Encourage her to talk, let her list all the reasons why she feels hurt, just listen and try not to justify your actions. If you have made decisions which have negatively impacted her say sorry - let her know that she is important to you and you want to help her.

I have older teens so know how challenging the behaviour can be but just like toddlers all the effort is worthwhile. In a few short years, with the right help, your dd will be a lovely young lady and you will have a close relationship with her.

gabyjane Sun 21-Apr-13 16:39:13

Cory what i meant was if she has the choice to be around me when im working she doesnt want to be, what with the added language issues no she is not around when im working although shes at school most weeks obviously so... When shes at school its not so bad but ive offered for her to come out with me most days over the easter hols and shes refused? My friends who have sons and daughters the same age dont bring their kids with them not sure why im suddenly again the bad guy not dragging her with me when i thought letting her be with her friends was the right thing to do? You have to remember i get threatened with SS every time i say im going to make her do something so would anyone else seriously drag their pysically put their child in the car?

Startlife thanks i know its hard for her and your dsd BUT i am really really trying my best to sort this out. I am at a loss as to what to offer more than what i do. I saw her out with her dad and gf and kids yesterday, same place i was taking dd anyway..she seemed to not really interact at all with them and i was cross/upset that she had gone to the same place as i wanted her to go with me yet she didnt seem to be having mch fun? I bought her some new bits for her room and have come home and blitzed it..3 carrier bags of rubbish,,4 washing machine loads of clothes and its back to nice again. We will see how she takes it. As for school..i ask her every day how shes got on, if she has homework, if she needs any help..the answers are always no. Do i rummage through her bag, call school every day to check? The gist of it is she wants me to lose my temper and send her to dads so this is very hard for me to keep making the effort yet have it constantly thrown back in my face.

She is at her dads today..his day with her yet ive driven past his work and hes there..shes out doing whatever..he could have told me and i could have had her but nope thats his idea of looking after her.

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