Boundaries for 16 year old daughter

(26 Posts)
MaryPoppins999 Sun 17-Sep-17 10:07:17

We've been struggling with our daughter for a little while but things have deteriorated this year in particular. She is 16 and has just started college. What do you expect similar aged teens to do around the house? What curfews do you have in place for weekdays and weekends? Do you expect to know who they're out with? She thinks we are unreasonably strict and I would like to check what other's do as we think she is the unreasonable one!

All I ask her to do is make her bed, change her bed linen (which she usually needs help with), keep her room tidy, put dirty washing in the laundry bin, put clean washing away, clear crockery out of her room, set and clear the dining table. Most of this doesn't happen without a lot of fuss.

Weekdays we ask her to be home 9 - 9:30.
Weekends she has been coming home 10:30.
But, she is always late by 1/2 - 1 hour, week days and weekends. She won't pick up the phone if we ring her in front of her friends. We have 'find my iPhone' and can see she is not where she says she will be and she appears to be miles away and travelling in a car. We have no idea who she knows with a car.

She holds us to ransom with her behaviour. We've allowed exceptions like staying out all night after prom and in the summer she stayed out all night for a birthday party. We went on an exotic, once in a lifetime, summer holiday and she was miserable throughout because the wifi was poor in public areas so she stayed in the villa on Snapchat as my husband decided to pay for a wifi package as he couldn't stand the moaning anymore.

Your experiences would be helpful to know!

<name changed>

OP’s posts: |
onemorecupofcoffeefortheroad Sun 17-Sep-17 10:35:00

It's a constant battle isn't it? .... but everything you describe sounds not unusual teenage behaviour and what my friends with teenage children and me are also dealing with.
I would just say though that your curfews seem early. Our son (nearly 17) doesn't have a curfew as I feel he should be organising his own life - so if he has work or college the next day he's got to work out that he needs to be home and in bed at a reasonable time. As a result he's mostly home at a reasonable time and will call to let us know if he's going to be late as he knows we'll be relaxed about It.
I figured that as I was living and working away from home at 16 and my parents had no idea what I was up to - he'd be able to manage it.
The wifi thing is normal too. But they do grow out if it - our elder son (nearly 19) now comes home from uni and wants to hang out with us and helps clear up dishes etc. without being asked - it's a miracle.

Sofabitch Sun 17-Sep-17 10:39:09

I had left home by 16.

I treat mine as adults. If they want to live in a mess so be it. But they are good. They cook and clean and generally contribute well.

But i think most people leave it too late to start treating children as equal members of the house and resentment builds up.

My 16 year olds don't have a curfew. But they do have to tell me where they are.. a rough eta and to let me know if something changes, exactly the same as i would do to them if i was out.à

Angelicinnocent Sun 17-Sep-17 19:13:39

No curfew but I expect them to be honest about where they are and to reply when I text them. Will often text a random question or comment about 9.30 and they know I'm just checking they are ok. If they don't reply I ring them.

Usually this leads to a conversation where I say are you ok and get a response like "why do I have to come home?" Followed by "oh yeah save me some pepperoni, I'll be there in 15 minutes"

VioletCharlotte Sun 17-Sep-17 19:28:25

16s a difficult age. I've got an 18 and 16 year old and all my friends with DC this age are having similar battles. Over the holidays, 16 year old went a bit feral so now he's at collage I've put some ground rules in place. During the week he has to be in by 10 and in bed with TV off by 11 (although he has his phone). Weekends he doesn't really have a curfew. Last night he went to a party and came in at 1, which I was ok with. He does tell me where he's going and I know most of his mates and overall they're ok. If he staying out overnight at the weekend he texts and let's me know.

Everyone I know with girls does seem to worry more though (which I can understand). I'd be worried that she's in a car miles away and telling you she's somewhere else.

Runninglateeveryday Sun 17-Sep-17 23:06:28

No curfew but she rarely goes out on school nights. Weekends I expect a text by 10 with what she's doing who with and whether she's coming home. I can't sleep till she's home and safe so usually by 1 I pester her a bit to hurry up!

MaryPoppins999 Mon 18-Sep-17 07:22:01

Thanks all for sharing your experiences and thoughts.

OP’s posts: |


Runninglateeveryday Mon 18-Sep-17 07:57:21

I expect similar ish chores to you but leave her room to her, generally this involves the house stinking and me having to nag!

lljkk Tue 19-Sep-17 21:54:42

We don't have curfews... they don't go out much. blush

she is always late by 1/2 - 1 hour
In this book, they make the point that your curfew is being observed. Not perfectly, but it is being observed, and getting het up about the poor quality observance isn't worth the stress. Just keep reiterating what the boundary is.

Jobs: everyone clears own plate from table after dinner & generally tidies up any of own mess. My teens otherwise don't have set jobs, if they want pigsty bedroom, fine. My teens nag me to clean the house, tbh. blush

We have no idea who she knows with a car.
Hard one to balance... you have to hope you have raised her to make sensible decisions about who she spends her time with, what she's doing.

exotic, once in a lifetime, summer holiday and she was miserable throughout because the wifi was poor in public areas

yup, that's modern kids for you. Can't live without WiFi.

In comparison, I could moan about adults who insist on eating out or SkyTV or other things I think are stupid luxuries -- but they think are non-negotiable essentials. I can put almost any adult I know in this group, really, they all expect things they think are essential that I think are hmm

JustHope Wed 20-Sep-17 09:25:47

The deal for us is that we pay for the phone contract so DD can communicate with us when she is out to let us know that she is safe. If she doesn't let me know she is going to be late and constantly ignores my texts or calls then I will no longer pay for her to have a phone. Being a half hour late I can tolerate if Ive had text to say 'back in 30mins' or 'on my way'.

ifonly4 Wed 20-Sep-17 14:57:13

Your DD does far more than ours around the house, but we feel she should do more.

With regards night time curfews, we don't really have any, ie she's been to a concert on a weekday - other than lack of sleep we weren't worried as the other Mum took them and was there to collect.

We do expect to know where she is, who she's with and roughly what time she'll be home. This actually relates to all of us, we'll always tell her what we're doing, when we'll be back.

opheliacat Wed 20-Sep-17 14:59:03

I think the curfews are a bit controlling tbh.

pinkhorse Wed 20-Sep-17 15:04:04

We took our dsd 15 on holiday abroad earlier in the year and she spent most of it on her phone in the villa! What a waste of our money. She could have done that at home.

Why is a curfew controlling?

opheliacat Wed 20-Sep-17 15:06:27

Yeah but pink, was it not her holiday as well?

It's controlling because it is pretty early. When they are at sixth form college dynamics change. They are preparing for adulthood. 9:30 is v early!

pinkhorse Wed 20-Sep-17 15:08:30

But it's not a holiday when she's sitting in a hotel room the whole time on social media. How is that any different from being at home?

opheliacat Wed 20-Sep-17 15:11:55

Leave her at home then <shrug>

Either you are taking her to relax and enjoy herself and this may not be how you would relax and enjoy yourself but we're all different, or you want to force her to do something YOU want.

Which is it?

pinkhorse Wed 20-Sep-17 15:16:24

When we're paying a lot of money we want her to actually make use of it. She ate none of the all inclusive food either so we really did waste our money.

Anyway I've probably derailed this thread sorry!

loobylou10 Wed 20-Sep-17 15:26:22

I don't agree that a curfew at 17 is controlling. I think your job as a parent is to know where they are at that age

AnnabelleLecter Wed 20-Sep-17 15:27:10

No curfews for DD16. She lets us know if she's staying out and who with. She went to a festival with friends in the summer and goes to parties, has friends with cars mainly slightly older boys etc. I remember being fairly similar at that age.
She's very sociable, she gets that from us, so we can hardly complain.
We had same experience with our last couple of holidays, only interested in WiFi and she met friends within 5 minutes of being home!
She does keep her room tidy, does her own washing and feeds herself.
If she's rude I refuse to give lifts/money.

loobylou10 Wed 20-Sep-17 15:27:28


sashh Wed 20-Sep-17 15:36:25

OMG OP she is 16 not 8. Think about those curfews, if she wants to go to the cinema with friends she is not going to be home by 9.30.

Also does she have a reason to not stick to curfew (apart from them being ridiculous)?

I had to be home early at age 16, so on a Saturday night I would leave a group of friends, walk across the town centre on my own and catch a bus that dropped me 1/2 a mile from home and I walked the last bit.

Had my curfew been 1/2 an hour later I could have stayed with friends, caught the later but faster bus that dropped me right outside my home.

We went on an exotic, once in a lifetime, summer holiday

For whom?

titchy Wed 20-Sep-17 15:39:47

When we're paying a lot of money we want her to actually make use of it.

Yeah but that's YOUR choice to spend the money and I assume your choice of holiday and activity level. I imagine if you gave your child a genuine choice it would be to stay at home for a week glued to Snapchat and the Dominos app. Nothing worse than someone buying something for someone else that the other person didn't ask for or want, and then being annoyed because they're not grateful!

OP imo once they get to college things change - mine might be home at 10.00 on Saturday if they want me to pick them up, on the other hand if they're at a party I expect them to leave around midnight and be home 30 mins or so later depending on method of getting home. No curfews, but I want to know what they're up to , they plan on coming home and how they're getting back. Oh and if they're in for dinner.

WHAT they do is far more important than WHEN they do it. A curfew implies they can spend the evening in the park drinking vodka with the local young offenders and that's fine as long as they're home by curfew - whereas the curfew isn't the important thing - it's what they're actually getting up to that's important.

opheliacat Wed 20-Sep-17 15:47:54

I got into a physical fight with my mum on a family holiday when I was a year or so younger than OPs DD.

It was too fucking hot and I was trying to relax in the shade. She tried to physically drag me into the sun and I slapped her! Gorgeous memories hmm

Agree with titchys post.

Autumnskiesarelovely Wed 20-Sep-17 15:55:55

I think it depends on the child and circumstance. My 15 has to always let me know where he is, and be back by 9pm. Exceptions are fine but I arrange to pick him up as he socializes in town and we live miles out. He's easily swayed, and not always sensible, so I try and keep the time he's out just hanging around minimal.

But what I do is really support structured interests, like sport, so he sees a lot of his mates through that. I welcome his friends, regular sleep overs, pay for discos etc.

opheliacat Wed 20-Sep-17 15:59:16

There is a big difference between 15 and 16/17 at this stage, though, there really is.

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