dealing with theft and my teen

Jackie - posted on 02/16/2015 ( 2 moms have responded )

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I just found out my teen may be stealing from my sister-in-law and my niece! I'm still reeling from the shock and I don't want to over-react or under-react! As you can imagine my sister in law has been gossiping about this-they probably will for the next 50 years (my daughter isnt my husband's biological child) Worse is that my niece went and told my other sister in law about it-I'm still confused about why she would do that especially since she lives with us. I'm having to deal with a teenager who is probably stealing from us and a niece who derives some pleasure from humiliating my child-someone please help. I want to handle this but I'm not sure how-i dont want to misdirect my anger to my niece and I dont want to let my daughter get away with this-NEED HELP URGENTLY

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Jackie - posted on 02/17/2015

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Its a hard to accept but you're right Shawn. She needs to deal with the consequences of her actions. I think I'm just struggling with how to do that without causing life-long damage. This is a first offence but it doesnt mean she should get away with it.

My niece......not so sure her intentions were completely pure. She approached my SIL to ask her to tell me. Maybe she wanted to find a better way to tell me. I dont know. I know I need to deal with my daughter first. I know I cant have my niece ratting to my SIL everytime my daughter does something wrong at home. I worked so hard to get my in-laws to accept my child. I just feel like she, knowing this-could have handled this in a better way. But I could also just be misdirecting my anger and frustrations towards her ...and not my daughter who is the one who stole right......
thanks Shawn your response helped

♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 02/16/2015

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Well, maybe your niece told your SIL rather than you, because she's looking for advice on how to approach you about your daughter.

Children who steal from family members are irritating. They usually do it because they have some sense of entitlement, and they're either feeling put out because they aren't getting enough attention, or they're feeling pouty because she's been put on punishment.

Yes, your family will probably keep an eye on her for the rest of the relationship. My nephew stole a couple hundred dollars from my husband, and several electronics from my sons. Even though he's paid restitution, I still don't trust the little monkey as far as I can throw him, and I will keep an eagle eye on him when he's in my or my parents' homes, regardless.

Yes, the family has every right to know that the child cannot control her impulses.

Your daughter needs to pay restitution and return the items she's stolen. She then needs to approach each person she's stolen from, and apologize, face to face. It will be up to them whether or not they trust her again.

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