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Falling out massively with DD, nearly 18 (sorry, long)

(36 Posts)
allo2101 Tue 21-Jan-14 14:12:27

I am at my wit's end. My DD is in her second year of sixth form and doesn't really know what to do next year. She has applied for four unis and had acceptances from three of them, two in London plus Plymouth. She isn't expected great A Levels, probably 3 Cs so knows her choices are limited. However the London unis are right at the bottom of the league tables. She thinks she may take a gap year and work full-time and go to uni in 2015.

I fully accept it's her life and she must do as she sees fit but don't think that making the odd suggestion is out of order. I feel she'd do better in a non-London uni, not just because of the league tables but also because I'm a single mum, so won't be able to help financially and everything will be on a student loan. She works part-time at the moment, earns nearly £400 a month and can't manage financially. Have told her that she will end up with far less disposable income in London and not sure how she'll cope.

Tried to discuss all this logically and calmly last night, ended up in a blazing row and she hit me across the face while telling me to fuck off (I am so ashamed to say this) I lost it and told her to go, knowing she would go straight to her best friend's house. She later texted me a very abrupt apology and turned up here this morning, still raging and I (calmly) said I wasn't able to discuss it as I was working (I work from home) plus she had her friend with her, and said I would discuss it later.

I am not trying to run her life as she thinks, but just trying to be a concerned parent, knowing this is a big life decision and wanting to point out pros and cons etc. I am devastated that she hit me (and told me to fuck off as well) I am really not sure how to mend this - at the moment I am so disappointed in her attitude towards me that I am probably being a bit cold towards her, but she really needs to realise that I'm only looking out for her best interests.

I am very guilty of always giving her everything, she has a car which she is learning to drive on, she has lifts everywhere in the meantime, she goes out as and when she wants and everyone I know says I'm too soft on her, so this is where it has got me! I just want my lovely little girl back, not this bitter, angry girl who seems to hate me sad

ihatethecold Tue 21-Jan-14 14:39:13

Sorry but if my child slapped me across the face they would be out.
There is no excuse for it.
Let her make her own decisions.
Personally I agree with you that she should go to a good uni.
Pretty pointless going to a shit uni.
It's a lot of money to study so she should be getting her monies worth.
She may also benefit form taking a year out to decide what she wants to do.

Covalone78 Tue 21-Jan-14 14:40:07

The first three lines of the last paragraph to some extent explain how you created the "angry one". Letting her back in has further proven you will let her get aweay with anything. Morals, respect and manners seem to be absent and will only appear if you stand up to her and start parenting rather than giving her everything. If you can't manage of £400 a month whilst living at home then you have a serious problem and don't stand a chance living on a SL in London.

I think you need to get very tough and start by making her feel extremely guilty about hitting you, that is despicable and frankly you should not have let her back in and explained exactly why.

PoshPaula Tue 21-Jan-14 14:47:03

Try not to be too upset at the moment. Things will calm down.

I think you did exactly the right thing to put some distance between you and your daughter, at this point, as you both need time to think a bit more clearly and let your feelings subside.

Questions that might be worth considering... Does she want to go to a London uni? Is that what the disagreement is about? What is your daughter's motivation to go to a London uni - is it the social aspects or the courses offered?

You can make it clear to her that her choice of uni is her choice, but you are only able to contribute so much financially - so she will need to consider how to finance her studies. Student loans aren't necessarily the bad news they seemed to be at first.

A year out is often a good thing - students often do better when they have had a chance to mature a bit before taking up a uni place. In that year she could work and save some money towards future study. Either way she needs to be spending her time doing valuable research into the right courses, and student finance, rather than wasting energy arguing with you!

Mumontheedge1 Tue 21-Jan-14 14:53:38

So sorry to hear this... Sounds like your daughter is very angry and stressed and taking out on you .. Normal I think but slapping you is a step too far. There are a few issues here... The slapping needs dealing with separately ... So deal with this and explain that it isn't something you will tolerate... End of
The uni though is up to her... The reality is she will go wherever she gets in and you aren't going to be certain of that until she has her final results so all this anxiety might be for nothing.
I'd leg her know the anoint you can support her and get her to do the sums..
Good luck though x

winterkills Tue 21-Jan-14 15:55:56

How horrible for you sad. Not only are you attacked but you are made to feel guilty about somehow creating the situation by being 'soft' on your dd. The fact is she alone is responsible for that violence and it's important not to let it be brushed aside with just her lame apology.

When she is calm enough to talk to you need to start by telling her that there can never be a repeat of that violence or you will immediately phone the police. In fact many parents on here would probably advocate phoning the police this time to make sure she understands.

Ironically she is behaving as if she 'owns' you in some way and the normal rules of behaviour don't apply so therefore it's ok to hit you. Would she dare to hit anyone else in that way? Of course not, she would be in very deep trouble.

Of course you should be able to discuss pros and cons with her without her blowing up but if she can't discuss it in an adult way then best to tell her that it is all her decision to make - which of course is true - and that you will leave her to it and she will have to deal with the consequences.

A gap year while she works and (possibly) builds up some savings sounds like a sensible idea, perhaps she will also develop a bit more maturity and understanding of the pitfalls you are trying to warn her about.

As mumontheedge says it sounds as though she's getting very stressed out about it but to take it out on you in that way is completely unacceptable.

gamerchick Tue 21-Jan-14 16:10:12

I think you need to get off her back personally.

That said if she's all growed up then it's time to manage her own life. No more running around after her... she has to make and learn from her own fuck ups and if you leave her alone she'll probably do things your way anyway. You've raised her.. she will think like you to a certain point.

She crossed a line with the slap. If she even thinks of crossing it again eject her from the house.

PoshPaula Tue 21-Jan-14 16:16:31

'Getting off her back' sounds a bit harsh, but then you may have something there, because sometimes detaching yourself from the problem can help parent and child.

SilverApples Tue 21-Jan-14 16:19:30

She's got a lot of growing up to do, I doubt that she hates you, but she certainly doesn't respect you.
It's going to be very hard to do, but if I were you, I'd withdraw and let her make her own mistakes. Unless it's life-threatening, I'd let her stand on her own two feet, make her choices and deal with the consequences.
I would insist that if she plans on staying at home for her gap year, then any violence means she's out and needs to rent a room.
You have given her everything, she's stopped seeing it as something to appreciate and be thankful for and now just assumes that it's her right.
She needs to be aware that it really isn't.

Travelledtheworld Tue 21-Jan-14 16:46:00

Tough situation I am sorry.

When's he has calmed down sit down together with a piece of paper and a calculator and have a proper conversation about the financial facts of life.

I agree with the other posts above, but also you need to come to terms with the fact you will not be getting your " little girl" back.

You need to work on building a relationship with a young woman who is in the verge of testing her own independence and will eventually respect your advice and offer back a more mature type of love.

Rosencrantz Wed 22-Jan-14 00:52:04

If she wants to go to a London uni, that's what she should do.

With three Cs, nowhere is going to be great and massively improve job prospects, and the student loans company offers an increased student loan for London students.

She will have enough money, and if she doesn't, she will learn to cut back or work. It is very doable.

Monty27 Wed 22-Jan-14 00:59:52

Oh dear. She may not be in an up market uni in London, but does she know how much grotty student accommodation costs?

Dear lord, I feel for you OP. sad

MadIsTheNewNormal Wed 22-Jan-14 01:17:18

Students who end up in London will be living in the shittiest of shitholes in the roughest / most dangerous areas. It's that simple. If she is prepared for that then that's up to her. Tell her that, calmly and quietly, and then back off.

And also tell her that is she ever so much as looks at you the wrong way again you will not hesitate to throw her out, and call the police and she is lucky you haven't done that already.

Don't you dare go trying to mend this. You'll make it worse if she thinks she can hit you and then end up with you grovelling to her. She needs to know that she has completely crossed a line, and she needs to work to make it right. Don't rant and shout though - just coldly detach for a while and stop running around after her.

cory Wed 22-Jan-14 08:58:16

Agree with the two main points made by the other posters:

hitting is absolutely unacceptable and she must know that next time you will call the police

her future is her choice, if she wants to live in the shittiest of shitholes it is not for you to say that she shouldn't

One thing you must stop doing is implying that you know she couldn't cope with x or y situation. She is growing up, she will be changing as a person, it is very bad for her to get an idea of who she is set in stone at this time, neither she nor you can know what she can cope with or can't.

When I went to uni, my mother believed I must have a flat of my own because I couldn't possibly cope living in student accommodation. A few years later I was living in a freezing slum, right in the centre of the red light district, and happier than I had ever been in my life (no, I wasn't on the game, just poor). She had never seen the adult me - and neither had I at that stage.

chocoluvva Wed 22-Jan-14 09:40:49

I'm sure this sort of incident is more common than we realise - you will not be alone. Please don't feel guilty about the way you've brought up your DD or about telling her to get out of the house. None of us are perfect parents.

Withdraw your lifts and similar favours that you do for her and tell her it's because at the moment you don't feel like being kind to her after her unacceptable behaviour. Be as brisk and businesslike when you say this as you can manage.

Don't discuss the issue of next year for a while either. She's not going to listen to your advice at the moment. Even if she accepts a place at a London uni she can still change her mind. She will hopefully continue to mature between now and September too.


PoshPaula Wed 22-Jan-14 10:38:06

students who end up in London live in the shittiest of shitholes not necessarily, my son has been living in halls of residence on Brick Lane for twelve months, as he attends Central Saint Martins - (and he was very happy to 'end up' there). But, the rent is very expensive, living costs are high, and I can only give him a very limited amount of money - so he has taken on a loan.

It's education, it's expensive, but think of it as a graduate tax. Sure there are students who would do better to go and get jobs but there weren't many good jobs out there last time I looked.

MadIsTheNewNormal Wed 22-Jan-14 12:07:09

Yes but Paula that's halls - what next?

MadIsTheNewNormal Wed 22-Jan-14 12:07:32

sorry, I meant that most people can only stay in halls for the first year.

throckenholt Wed 22-Jan-14 12:21:52

I would send her an email - that she can read in her own time.

Say that she is now an adult and making adult decisions. You were treating her as an adult, by trying to point out her options and possible outcomes that she may not have considered.

Point out that her reaction was not the action of an adult, and she obviously should never repeat that - it doesn't solve any problems.

When she is willing to act like an adult, then she should come and talk to you.

oscarwilde Wed 22-Jan-14 12:40:47

Assuming that you have never slapped your daughter I would point out that she has legally assaulted you and you won't tolerate it. If it ever happens again you will involve the police
In response to the assault, I would confiscate her car keys and withdraw lift priviledges for one month aside from anything school related. She won't be able to run a car in London anyway so she might as well get used to public transport.
Point out that you simply tried to flag to her that her money will stretch further outside of London and she will graduate with less debt; but it's her choice to make as to how much debt she wants to incur to get a degree.
If she's used to you being a soft touch she may be relying on you to help her to fund her lifestyle choices. You need to make your boundaries clear - you have raised her, you love her, and there will always be a home for her (with rent) but at what point do you consider your job done financially?

PoshPaula Wed 22-Jan-14 13:04:21

mad he's now moved into a shared house in Bloomsbury.

oscarwilde Wed 22-Jan-14 13:06:06

Send her this link - £100 a week plus bills in Hendon (which is miles out) for a room, or £125 to share a room with another student in central london.¤t-distance=0.0&seller_type=&property_type=&property_room_type=&min_price=&max_price=&property_couples=

Custardo Wed 22-Jan-14 13:14:02

i think writing to your children is a shitty way of communicating.

I have always told my (grown up now) kids when they were teenagers - and we had some blazing arguments - that if I was physically hurt in any way I would call the police.

I like to have my 'formal' conversation with the kids sat at the dining table, the table bring a sort of semi formality to it

the key is in the tone of your voice - keep calm.

using phrases like

an apology shouldn't come with a 'but' ' but you were shouting. but you were angry...etc'

Your actions are your responsibility. That you struck me, is your responsability, how you handle situations is your responsability, not mine

further violence I will call police - and mean it


I would tell her that her uni place is her own choice.

I totally get - more than you know - that you want to help, you have been through life, you can see absolutely the pit falls

but to learn life lessons, our kids have to make these mistakes.

the slap would mean that I would absolutely withdraw from this conversation and only give advice when I am asked for it

PoshPaula Wed 22-Jan-14 13:24:40

That is good advice to the OP custardo

THERhubarb Wed 22-Jan-14 13:27:14

I was going to write down some advice but custy has beat me to it.

Ditto everything she said.

Custy rocks this area.

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