My 18 year old daughter is out of control, advice?

Sammy - posted on 02/05/2015 ( 14 moms have responded )

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I have an 18 year old daughter, who is in high school, about to graduate, and she's out of control. She has a curfew of 11:30 on school nights and 12 on weekends, she breaks her curfew and sometimes doesn't get home until maybe 1 am. She has a boyfriend who is the same age, and he drinks, smokes, has a history of breaking the law, and hangs out with troubled people. She was not doing any of these things until she met him. He has influenced her in a bad way. She feels that she should be able to go and come as she pleases with no questions asked, and that's not how it works. Kids nowadays feel that they should be able to run rampant and do whatever they want just because they're 18. Being 18 doesn't give you any special rights. Just because the law says that you are an adult and that you're ready for the world doesn't mean you actually are. When I was 18 I still had rules and if I broke them, I got grounded. When you can take care of yourself without your parents help, pay your own rent, make the right decisions, act like an adult in any situation, then you are an adult. Not when you're old enough to buy cigarettes and whatever else you're old enough to do at 18. Also, just because you're old enough to do something by law, doesn't mean you're necessarily ready or mature enough to do it.
For example: you can have a baby when you start puberty, but does that make you ready for a baby? NO, it just means that your body is developed enough to conceive one. Teens need to understand that being an adult is far beyond being 18. That's why so many teens make reckless decisions because they feel that they are ready and they are invincible, and it's completely false. 18 or not, you still need your parents guidance because you are inexperienced in a lot of ways. That's what I'm trying to get my daughter to understand, and I will continue trying. Moms of teens, am I right or wrong?

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Raye - posted on 02/06/2015

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My opinion: she obeys the rules you set for your house, or she finds somewhere else to live. No, some 18 year olds don't have a mature mindset and you may fear for them being out on their own. But they have to sink or swim themselves. If you don't think she's ready to live on her own, then maybe you failed somewhere along the way when raising her. If you keep her in bubble-wrap now, you're continuing to fail her. She has to learn her own lessons.

On the side note of teen sex, it's never a good idea to make it ok. Whether she uses "protection" or not, she could still end up pregnant or with STD's that could affect her the rest of her life (and also could affect every partner she would ever have afterward, and their partners, and so on). You do have to make your child responsible, so that way they will know right from wrong and will be mature enough when they become an adult.

Dove - posted on 02/06/2015

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Time to lay down the law. She follows your rules (that you preferably come up with together that are fair to both of you) or when she graduates... she moves out. That gives her two months to straighten out or find another place to live.

Sammy - posted on 02/06/2015

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18 is an adult legally. But if you're not taking care of yourself, you're not an adult. Like I stated, you may be able to do certain things legally, but that doesn't mean that you're an adult or have an adult mindset.

Jodi - posted on 02/05/2015

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Actually, I'm going to go there. Sex is an adult responsibility too. Why? Because every time you have sex, protected or otherwise, you could end up pregnant, and babies are an adult responsibility.

You can't expect to be relaxed on your child having sex at a young age (as young as 13 if I read you correctly) and then expect her to toe the line on all the other things you think she is too young for.

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Jodi - posted on 02/06/2015

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"18 is an adult legally. But if you're not taking care of yourself, you're not an adult. Like I stated, you may be able to do certain things legally, but that doesn't mean that you're an adult or have an adult mindset."

So tell her to go out and look after herself if she wants to live as an adult. It really is that simple. I think you are missing the point. She has a choice here. This isn't about you "controlling" your daughter. It's about her making a choice between following the house rules in the home in which she lives, or deciding to move to her OWN house where she gets to make the rules. She is 18, you actually don't have the legal right to control ehr as your child anymore, but you do have the legal right to set rules in your home and expect them to be followed, or evict the tenant.

Trisha - posted on 02/06/2015

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@Jodi "But the fact is, they are adults and they will make mistakes, and you need to let them make mistakes so they can learn from them. That's the point I'm making."
I LOVE THIS.

Unfortunately, the mistakes you make in life are the number one key in pushing you towards being an adult. If you have no one but yourself to push yourself forward, and have to get off your ass when you fail, and see your failures and work towards making yourself a better person - THAT is when you start truly becoming an adult. That official age is 18, but it can be 16, or 35 - depending on the person.
I have a friend who is 50, living in his parents basement (they won the lottery) and spends all his money on cars. I DO NOT have respect for him as an adult. I look at him like he is a teenager, as I see him do nothing beneficial for the people around him, and depend on others constantly.

Jodi - posted on 02/05/2015

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"Point is, 18 year olds think that they know it all and that they no longer need their parents for anything. It's not so."

But they don't need their parents for everything you think they need them for. They CAN live by themselves. They CAN make responsible adult choices AND live by themselves. Many, many 18 year olds do. 18 IS an adult, now its time to make adult choices and live adult responsibilities. If she wants her cake she needs to eat it to. Of course 18 year olds think they know it all. My bet is you thought that when you were 18 too. I know I did. My brothers did. Heck, every teenager I've ever known (and as a high school teacher, that's a lot of teens) thinks they know it all. No surprises there.

But the fact is, they are adults and they will make mistakes, and you need to let them make mistakes so they can learn from them. That's the point I'm making.

Set up an agreement about the rules in the home, like a tenancy agreement. If she doesn't comply, you give her notice and you ask her to move out. You said she's nearly graduated, right?

Sammy - posted on 02/05/2015

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Jodi, yes I did say that. It's okay for teens to have sex IF they use protection, but that doesn't necessarily mean that they are ready. Of course my mother didn't ''like'' the fact that I got pregnant at 16, but it was my choice. Point is, 18 year olds think that they know it all and that they no longer need their parents for anything. It's not so.

Gena - posted on 02/05/2015

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I agree with Jodi. I also left home when i was 18 and also not because i had a bad home. I washed,cooked and did everything my mother taught me to do when i grow up. About the smoking,i agree..just because you are 18doesnt mean you should start drinking and smoking. I started smoking when i was 15..i still smoke. And i always had to pay my own cigarettes. My mother would never ever pay my smokes! Till this day..when i had surgery last August i asked her to bring me fanta,some cookies and a pack of smokes to the hospital. I wanted to pay for everything,she said its ok for the fanta and cookies but not the smokes. I payed for the smokes and i totaly understand her. I will also never ever pay smokes for my son if he ever starts.

Jodi - posted on 02/05/2015

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"For example: you can have a baby when you start puberty, but does that make you ready for a baby? "

Hang on, weren't you the one just saying there's nothing wrong with teens having sex from the age 13?

Anyway I've been living on my own since I was 18. My brother also all left home at 18 (one was 17). Not because home was bad, but because we had to leave to be able to get our educations or jobs. In fact, almost everyone I went to school with left home at 18. And guess what? We all survived!!!! You can still get parental guidance when you are not living at home!

Anyway, in my home, for adult children, I do still have rules, but it is more about what is respectful to others in the home. So yes, we do still have curfews. We still have rules around a lot of things.

Adult children have a choice, to either leave (which they ARE perfectly capable of, and if they aren't, then you are there as a shoulder to lean on and they will have learned their lesson) or stay and be respectful of the rules. Will they always make a good choice when living on their own? No. But stop coddling your children!!!!

Your children are going to make choices you don't like. That's what teens do. If you had a baby at 16, like you said you did, you also made choices your mother didn't like.

~♥Little Miss - posted on 02/05/2015

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BUT, and there is a big BUT.....some 18 year olds are indeed mature enough to be living on their own, make wise decisions, and act like an adult that the law says they are. Others...not so much. It is very individual and case by case.

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