How do i apologize or should I ?

Ellen - posted on 01/24/2013 ( 24 moms have responded )

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Daughter is 16 years old and she has been twice late getting home in a week. Last night they where out and it was 1230 and she was not home and she was suppose to come home with a friend so i am also responsible for the friend too.. I know the friends mom would be upset so i told them if they where not home by 1 the door would be locked and i knew they would probably go to her house and have to explain or i said if i come pick her up and take her friend home no sleepover. My daughter texted me said her mom was not home and they came home about 1:20 and i let them in they went straight to the bedroom and did not talk. Its winter i wouldnt have locked the door on her or in the summer either i dont know why i said it and now i feel i went to far and made threats i didnt intend to follow through and wont believe me next time if i do on something else..

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Terrie - posted on 01/25/2013

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You have nothing at all to apologize to her for. You were generous enough to extend her curfew only a month ago and she's already shown that she's not responsible enough to respect it so there has to be a consequence. Your reaction when you called her after she hadn't arrived home on time was perfectley reasonable. When your child doesn't show up when expected -- especially late at night -- you go back & forth between being angry and worried that something might have happened to them. It's a horrible feeling. Many of us have been there.
The attitude that she then gave you when you tried to talk to her last night was very disrespectful. Unfortunately at her age it's pretty common, but it's still not acceptible. Her "I'm moving out" thing was most likely just a poor reaction to you sticking to your guns and I highly doubt that she'd do it. At her age they don't necessarily get that you're only reacting this way because you love her.
Keep it up and hang in there. You're being a good mom! Hugs to you.

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Call the police and report her as a runaway. Get her back home and then tell her how much you love her. She'll be mad, but you need to make sure she is safe. Until she turns 18 she cannot decide where she lives.

Kara - posted on 01/26/2013

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I noticed in your post that you are feeling guilty over what you said about locking her out, just because it was Winter. Don't do that to yourself, you were standing your ground and that is a good thing. Obviously she has somewhere else to stay anyway, so why feel bad about that, guilt makes you let them get away with so much more than they should, hence the reason I said you need to set up boundaries, and I am not talking about curfew, I am talking about the way she is treating you! She is a 16 year old girl, and by law you are the one responsible for her until she is 18, so really there is no moving out! Her friends mother cannot check her out of school, take her to the dr, or register her for school, and if she continues to stay they could be in trouble for harboring a runaway. If she was not home by 7 tonight and she were my child I would be over at her friends house to get her, I have done it before, they get mad, but they get over it, and then eventually they respect the fact that you are in control and stop doing it. If she continues to be a problem, you might have to get someone else involved to help with the situation, but don't let her push you around, and sometimes you just can't communicate with them they are teenagers and pure hormones, you just have to show them that you are the boss! When I was that age I would try and talk back to my mom or be late for curfew, which I admit was not that often, because I knew that I was gonna get my behind tore up. That is what is wrong with these kids today... we are not "Allowed" to do anything to punish them really, we all look like big jokes for the most part. It is rather sad because in reality we are raising a generation of very selfish people that have not care at all for family values!

Tracy - posted on 01/26/2013

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My son is 16. He knows he better be home by the time we agreed (which varies depending on activity and group he's with). He also knows I would NEVER want him to rush home just to make curfew and avoid trouble - he could get into an accident in all the rushing. He can keep me informed if somehow he is running behind. HOWEVER, he had better make sure that he is TRYING to be home on time. I understand that sometimes the waiter took extra long to get food to you or a game can run late or a ton of other things can get in the way. As long as he is letting me know what is going on, he will almost never be in trouble. If he were to just simply show up late (more than 10 or so minutes) then he will not be allowed to go out again for a while. My cousin and I are the same age, both of us female. She was given a solid curfew and had to follow it, even if it meant leaving a movie halfway through (which she had to do several times). Luckily, she was a great teenager and observed these rules most (if not all) of the time. ROTFL, but if you had given ME those rules as a teenager - it would have been too strict and NEVER would have been followed just out of rebellious "principle". Maybe try talking to your daughter about what's going on and why curfew is not being made. Does she feel it's unfair (personally, midnight sounds reasonable to me at 16 - now that I'm an adult)? If she keeps breaking curfew on purpose - and by that large of an amount - why are you permitting her to go again AND feeling like you have to apologize to HER?

My mom got angry at my grandpa once when she was a teenager. Screamed something about going to run away and live somewhere else. She went to school afterwards. When she came home the door was locked and her bags were packed on the front porch. She had to ask (beg?) to be let back in. What happened to THOSE types of parents? That's the type I am. I told my son, seriously, that if he doesn't want to be part of this family then to find a friend to live with because I will NOT have him living here putting everyone through a slow and painful "death" of our relationship. I would rather have one big hurt of him leaving that we can all move on from than to drag out years of him withdrawing and resenting us. He suddenly realized just how serious I was and how his behavior had effected the rest of the family. He came to me later and apologized for his recent behavior and has been working hard to be more involved with everyone.

Yadda Yadda Yadda...my stories and stories... basically, I am trying to say why are YOU cowering down and playing the "will you like me now" role? It's your job to teach her what is and isn't appropriate. I said earlier how any strict rules as a teenager and I would have rebelled. But I can also tell you now, that one major thing that I still resent my parents for (and we get along great now) is that they never seemed to put their foot down or really pay any attention to what I was doing. I ran off to Vegas (I lived in Utah) and California when I was 16 for various weekend trips and no one took the time to find out what I was doing. I simply said I was staying the weekend at a friend's house. They said "ok sweety". I look at my kids now and can't even FATHOM not knowing where they are for a day let alone not knowing they are hundreds of miles away! So do your daughter a favor, even if she resents it now, be tough on her and let her know that you CARE where she is/what she's doing. My mom was too busy worrying about me not liking her than being my strong mother. She still is. Don't make your daughter wonder why you never paid attention.

Starr - posted on 01/25/2013

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There doesn't seem to be anything to apologize for on your part. I would reduce the curfew as a punishment, really why does a teen be out that late anyways? What are they doing? My daughter doesn't really have a curfew but it is always subject to the situation as to when I ask her to be home, usually not later than 10pm. They just took advantage of you here. It sounds to me that she had the friend over to your home because they can get away with being out later than they can at the friends home. That kind of attitude that she has tells me they are up to no good. She needs to lose privileges like her phone (works wonders, that is their lifeline to friends), sleepovers, reduced curfew, use of car if she is driving or other activities (Not sure I would try grounding because she will most likely disregard it anyways). My girls lose their phone for the night just for slamming doors and yelling at me. I'm sure if she does "move out" it wont last long, she will need money, food, clothing etc. I doubt someone else will be willing to support her for long.

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Ellen - posted on 01/28/2013

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My daughter has come back and we talked more. I am thankful! I know i need to learn much more and know there will be more problems in the future. I am getting as much help as i can to understand teens and to learn the best way to handle things better. I learn a lot from this experience what was okay with what i did and what i need to do more of and to also make her accountable. I appreciate all the responses and feedback. Thank you all very much!

Ellen - posted on 01/27/2013

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Well thanks, i know you are trying to help and good to know you talked to the mom. In canada you cant bring them back they are allowed to leave at 16. I talked to the mom she was at last night and didnt know anything about problems and my daughter came home this afternoon the mother was not going to keep her. I dont treat her like a princess she is nasty in her communication just havent wanted to kick her out and trying the best i can do get her to follow rules and understand her need for independence. Backbone is kick her out i havent been able to do that.

Jennifer - posted on 01/27/2013

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OKay I don't have teens yet but here's what my mom would have done.... She would have started off by going to the friends house and taking my butt home. Then I would be on lock down for as long as she felt like I should be. I would not know when it was going to end and it would not end all at once it would be slow. Not to mention that along with that would be an open invitation to leave for good BUT I had to take everything I had with me, if I left something it would have been gone in less then 24 hours. I never tried it but I know my mom would have gone through with it. The lock down I did get for sneaking out once. And 12 or even 11 pm is really late in my mind unless they are at a movie you take them to what is there that they could even do?

Nicole - posted on 01/27/2013

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I would like to offer a slightly different point of view on this topic. My family went through a very similar situation a few years ago, but not with my daughter, with a friend of hers. She came to us claiming her mother was kicking her out and she had no where else to go. I told her she could stay, but only a few days while we figured everything out. Instead of just taking everything this girl said at face value, I spoke first to my daughter, then to the girls mother. In speaking with my daughter I discovered 2 things, first, the girl loved coming to our house, because we treated her like family, meaning she sat at the table to eat with us, if spending the night adhered to the same cerfew and lights out time, spoke to everyone in our home with respect, etc. my daughter let me know her friend had very few rules at home, and could do pretty much what ever she wanted. The second thing I learned was that she had not been kicked out, but "left", because her mom had dared impose a cap on her cel phone usage. In speaking with her mom I learned mom was more concerned with her daughter liking her than respecting her. In the end we sent the friend home, we let her know she would always be welcome to visit but that we would not tolerate being manipulated, and She was to treat her mother with respect. Unfortunately, mom continued to treat the girl like a princess, never teaching her respect or consequence to her actions. My daughter stopped being friends with her, because they were too different, but they still have mutual friends. 5 years later and the girl now manipulates men the same way she manipulated us and her mom. She bounces from man to mom to man and back again.

PLEASE, for your daughter's sake, grow a back bone! Set clear rules with clear consequences. Let her know that while she is a minor, she is your responsibility, and if she leaves, you will bring her back, with police help if required. If she tries to call your bluff, find out where she is and talk to the mom of where ever she is staying, and give her the full story (including the mistakes you have made). Family counselling would be a big help to both you and your daughter, but you need to make changes, regardless.

Ellen - posted on 01/27/2013

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She hasnt come home for two days now. its only been her and me for the last 16 years. All her friends matter the most now and she talks to her dad but he lives far away. I think he may be helping her and may be offering to send her money. We dont talk because he is verbally abusive. I have put my all into parenting the last 16 years and my identity is around that and feeling i failed or wish i knew more. It is definitely triggering my abandonment issues and feeling totally alone. If she takes things should i let her take all of it labtops, phones make it so comfortable for her out there?

Sharon - posted on 01/27/2013

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I would call her everyday to say I love you. And let her know what your job as a parent is. And that is raise her keep her safe so she can learn to be on her own. Also let her know that you will be praying for change and that God has his eyes on you. Tough love is not easy but today's children need old school lessons.

Ellen - posted on 01/27/2013

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thanks sharon, i do feel like i have lost her. She hasnt come home for 2 days. She hasnt taken anything. I have tried my best dont know if i should follow what some people said give her a deadline because that is not what i want her to do. or call her again today and ask whether she is leaving. She cant do this either just not come home. I wonder if I should talk to her calmly not show her how upset i am and tell her what she would need and get her a bank account and hope she changes her mind once she know how much she would need to live and all that stuff. Support her in a way and she may think it is probably stupid right now to do that. I hope you are so right.

Sharon - posted on 01/27/2013

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She is not moving out. That is the mental game they play. My daughter now 17 said the same thing at 16, because she didn't want to clean or help out around the house I ask here how would she live ,eat, and do without the cell phone. I then went in her room gathered all her things and put them on the front porch. It shocked some since into her. I told her my house my rules. And to never say words that can get u in trouble. she is not moving. v

Ellen - posted on 01/27/2013

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She didnt come home last night. She texted me yesterday asking for lots of info email our phone acct.. i didnt answer. Planning things with someone. I feel sick to my stomach all night. I dont know what to do now.

Ellen - posted on 01/26/2013

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Well she didnt call me after the sleep over by noon so i finally called her and told her we need to talk. She said she is going shopping with her friend and her mom, doesnt ask if she can. I said then when you get back we need to have a talk. She said no, rather not. so i said if you are not coming home are staying at Lindsay and are you going to live there? she didnt say anything. I said you need to come home after that and talk to me about the rules if you want to stay here. She didnt say anything and i just said i am going now and you need to be home later if you want to live here. You know what the rules are and send them again by text. She hasnt taken anything with her. That was noon and this is 4pm and no call from her.

Ellen - posted on 01/26/2013

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I dont want her to end up on the streets or down the wrong road or create anymore emotional distance then we have now.. I want to keep the communication going even if its a little bit. I wont give her money or do anything extra for her though. She hasnt had a consequence from the other day because i thought she was moving. If she is late she usually loses her labtop. I will see how things go today when she comes home and we will talk again about what happened the other day and put the curfew back to her previous time on weekend.

Tracy - posted on 01/26/2013

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I guess it sounds like she is still calling the shots though. SHE decides whether she is moving out and you are just waiting to hear her decision. What if YOU made the choice. She came home and bags are packed for her waiting on the porch. Winter or not, she has to know that you are tough. You said you wouldn't lock the door because it's winter - or really at any time. Why not? What has been the actual consequence of NOT behaving?

Ellen - posted on 01/26/2013

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Hi Kara, she hasnt moved out yet. I asked her last night about if she was and she said she is getting things planned. No change in behavior or apology for her previous behaviour. I feel run over and that is what is bothering me. Balance between boundaries and love for your child. I dont feel that she wants to get along at all. Thanks for your message.

Ellen - posted on 01/26/2013

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Thanks for your message., i dont think my daughter ever wonders whether i am paying attention. Its just been a continuous fight and she is not listening and being disrespectful. There has been a past... and she used it for some time. I continously have to call her everyday remind her she has to call me or report in. I only felt bad that i said i would lock her out and it being winter and all. I told her she had to follow certain rules and layed them out and she said that she was moving out but hasnt yet. That was two nights ago says she is getting things organized. I am hurt she would do that taking it personal how can you not when its your daughter? Even though she has not moved out she hasnt change her behaviour keep me informed of where she is. I guess i havent told her she has to leave but i also didnt say anything when she said she was except, that it was up to her but these are my rules. Last night she stayed at a friends. so there wasnt a question of time getting home but there was to call if she went elsewhere she didnt call me but i texted her before bed to say good night. She wants a sleepover pretty much every night on the weekend. Their house or mine. I agree about the curfew i dont want to put one exactly down its depends where she is going what she is doing and who she is with. Probably know later then 1230 or 1 but there has to be trust and their isnt any right now. Sorry to say.

Kara - posted on 01/25/2013

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You are gonna have to let her find out the hard way how good she has it at home. I would not allow her to come home until she give you an apology and learns to treat you with the respect you deserve. You do not owe her one or she will think that her behavior is okay, and clearly it is not. She is however only 16 years old, so you need to be careful if she is still in school that she is not missing any days, because they will come after you if you have not reported it to the proper authorities. Good luck with all of this.. I will be praying for you!

Ellen - posted on 01/25/2013

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Last night we had a talk about following rules and it got where she slamming doors and i told her she had to follow the rules to live her and now she says she is moving out. Will talk to me once in awhile and not to come to the house where she is staying and hasnt told me yet. I spent the night crying. I am so depressed now in my life and dont know if i will ever get out of it. This has been going on for some time. Will see tonight if she does and how i can handle it.

Laci - posted on 01/25/2013

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curfew is curfew...stick to your guns! there has to be a consequence for not following your rules..or she will take advantage everytime..all teens would..its their job :)

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