My 12 year old daughter used to be my biggest help and we could trust her and she was always the more responsible one . Now we can't get her to do anything and she shuts herself in her room and doesn't hangout with family anymore. I don't know what to do we used to be so close..

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D - posted on 05/30/2012

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Teens at that age want to exert their independance. My kids would not even let me hug them at that age. Just make sure she is not going through some drama (and to a kid that age any little thing can be huge to them). Maybe give her a journal to write in to express her feelings. Try to give her more adult choices in the day to day family planning. Even if she gives you an idea that to you seems off the wall, go with it if it is not dangerous. This will let her have more control over her life, and let her see that you view her as growing up. Give her more responsible things to do such as cook a dinner, pick a movie (not just a kids movie), or choose what clothes to wear. One note, check her discreetly for self harm marks (cutting etc).....If she is doing that deal with it but don't freak out on her. Another thought which we dealt with - we thought our daughter age 15 was doing drugs as she was always tired and achy and didnt want to do anything with us - turns out she has a low thyroid.....the medication for that changed her 100%.

Kristin - posted on 05/30/2012

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Welcome to the wonderful teenage years and puberty. My son who is now 16 went through a stage from 12 to still ongoing of detaching himself away from all of us. At this age families are no longer cool and they are trying to figure out their own independence and make their own choices and friends, it is very hard on parents, but make sure you keep the door to communication open. I also learnt to pick your battles with your kids and explain to them in a nice calm voice what is still expected of them. The last thing they want is to be judged and told what to do as they will rebel. My son had huge anger issues when he started puberty and couldnt control his emotions and i asked him what was going on he said he didnt mean it he just didnt know what was happening. We went through some pretty trying times but i learnt getting angry and yelling doesnt work being calm and open to listening helps. I wish you luck

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