Teenager who just got her license

Renee - posted on 09/09/2013 ( 4 moms have responded )

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My daughter just got her license last month.. Her father and I are not together and we are both remarried. We alternate weeks, the week she's by me she goes by him one night and vice-versa. She has always had a teenage attitude but it is worse since she got her license. Her dad says she can have the car when she's by his house only. Which is fine, they are his rules but now she says she doesn't want to stay her the one night( she's by his house) because she wants the car for school. Her dad does not live in the same school district so she has to drive a half and hour to get to school. I miss her when she's not around and I want to spend time with her. I'm afraid I lose my cool with her because all she does is argue with my husband and I. We have flat out told her those are our rules. I feel her dad gave her too much freedom too soon. Her dad lives 15 minutes from our house and they are all country roads. I know I have to stick to my guns. All we do is argue. I've been a mom that has been on the road taking her and her friends to games , volleyball practice for the last 4 years, the list goes on. How can I get her to understand without an argument?

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Jodi - posted on 09/10/2013

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Renee, you can't have a rule that she MUST come to your home for one night the week she is at her dad's house. When she is in your home she must follow your rules, but as I said, she is technically and legally old enough to decide whose house she wants to live in. You can't control that. I understand that this has been the arrangement in the past. What I don't understand is WHY it has to be this way and WHY you won't be flexible about it.

As Michelle said, as children get older, you need to be more flexible and adaptable with your arrangements. Heck, I have court ordered arrangement with my son's father for every second weekend, but that never happens, mostly because my son is now old enough to make some of his own decision and he chooses not to go. A judge wouldn't even entertain new arrangements in court that weren't in keeping with my son's wishes, so we've never really bothered going back there. When they are young, you can control the movement and visitation. As older teens, that isn't your prerogative. At least she still does the every other week with each of you. She could choose not to if you are going to continue arguing about one night.

Michelle - posted on 09/10/2013

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I have been doing shared care for many years and you do have to change to adapt with growing children. Asking a child to move house each week is stressful. I did it to my children until they got a bit older. It does work better staying each parent for longer periods at a time.
If you want to do the best thing for your daughter you will all sit down and work out what will work better for everyone. Put aside YOUR feelings about missing her and think about what is best for HER.
Take it from someone who has been there.

Renee - posted on 09/10/2013

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Her dad and I decided that we would alternate weeks and the week that she is by me or by him she comes by the other parent for one night...that hasn't changed..The problem started when she got her license and her dad told her she could only use the car when she is by HIS house, so that's the only reason she wants to go there more and I'm saying she has responsibilities at this house that she needs to do. It's not who she wants to stay with..she is fixated on driving the car everywhere. Your statement this is not about you, well this is about our family and what is expected out of each member of it. Teenagers I know are all about themselves. But every house has rules to follow and she's not following them. The same thing happens at her dads.

Jodi - posted on 09/10/2013

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How can you get her to understand? Even I can't understand. I don't understand why you can't allow her to stay at dad's during the entire week (his week) and not have to come home that one night. If she is old enough for a licence, I'd take an educated guess that she is old enough to decide who she wants to stay with. When it really comes down to it, she is actually old enough to make the choice that she wants to live with dad full time, and there isn't a damn thing the courts would do about it. So good luck with that,

I get that YOU miss her and YOU want to spend time with her and YOU have been doing the running around, and the list goes on. But it isn't about you.

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