What has my teenage daughter got against me??

App+7mnejhu - posted on 08/06/2010 ( 11 moms have responded )




What has my teenage daughter got against me? No matter how hard I try to do what I feel is in her best interests, all I get is backchat and surliness. The only time she is ever nice is when she wants something. I get that I sometime nag, especially about homework + studying but her matric exams are comming up shortly and I never see her studying. How can I get her to understand that the result of these exams will determine what she will become and what quality of life she will have in the future. The constant friction is really getting me down.


Brenda - posted on 08/16/2010




Well, I'm in school to become a high school counselor, so I'll chime in here. Teens are in a weird place. They want to be independent, but they are scared to death to be independent at the same time. They're hinging on the cusp of their future and no matter what you say, in the end the choices will be her own. She is probably overstressed because she knows all too well what the exams mean (but she's only going to roll her eyes and say "I know mom" to you) because she doesn't want you seeing her weakness. The truth is she's probably more nervous about it than you know.

Next time you feel like "nagging" try this strategy. Stop yourself and ask her if she could just tell you what she has planned to get ready for the tests. Put it on her to tell you what you want to kno but frame it in such a way that she feels like she has power over the conversation. Teens are dealing with a huge delimma, having the rights and responsibilities of an adult, but still being a child on the inside and being scared of growing up. If you show her that you are going to give her some control over something (what she tells you) you may be surprised at how much she reveals once she gets started. :)

Ashley - posted on 08/08/2010




the next time you feel like a fight is about to break out. lock just you and her in room. then tell her to yell at you... whatever she wants... no holds bar... be ready to take whatever she throws out at you... if you feel she is holding back... say i know there is more... tell me... or i know there is more... let it out... i want to know because i care.. or something like that... dont interrupt her... just let her have at it... she may yell she may not... but if she does just remember she is yelling to you not at you... there is a difference... you may be suprised... once she gets going and sees your not going to flip at what she says... she will go deeper... that way you'll be able to know what is really bothering her... when she is done... and youll know when she is... just hug her... ask her if she feels better... and if she wants to actually talk about anything that was said... if not just let it go... i promise the air will feel lighter... if you feel you heard something that concerns you... address is a little later after both calm down from the buzz... trust me there will be a buzz at first... its a great technique... it opens communication... and reassures her that you want to hear whats bothering her... i most likely has nothing or little to do with you and its just her perspective in general... some times saying things can help her realize how petty little things are when she hears her saying them outloud.

good luck..

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Stifler's - posted on 06/28/2011




I remember being a teenager and being really annoyed that my parents were always nagging me. Just tell her you're only going to say this once... and say what you need to say.

Sam - posted on 06/28/2011




NOTHING!! she has nothing against you, technically! As much as the advice you give is probably the right advice, your daughter is probably trying to find her own way. All moms nag, lol. If you didn't, you wouldn't care. My advice, let her fall (not too far!) Don't give her everything she asks for (I know--easier said then done!!) and let her make her own decisions and suffer the consequences of her actions. Maybe she is at the age that you shouldn't be telling her what is "in her best interests" but "asking her what she thinks is the best decision or direction to take"....this way you aren't the one controlling her destiny, she is making the decisions on her own. It is just really a question of helping her ask herself the right questions, without making it seem that they are judgements.

Good luck!

Amber - posted on 06/28/2011




I don't have a teenager, but I have teen cousins and preteen nieces. From watching their moms, I've concluded that you really have to pick your battles with them.

I'm also only 24, so I was a teen not that long ago. From that I can tell you that every time my mom nagged me about anything, I tuned her out and wanted to do the opposite. But when she put the responsibility on my shoulders and told me that it was my job to get it done and she trusted I would, I always ended up kicking it in high gear and getting my stuff together.

I'm thinking that your matric exams are similar to our SAT or ACT process for applying to college/university? I can tell you what was most effective for me. I took a pre-test to see where I was at, then looked up the schools I wanted to attend to find out what I needed.

Instead of telling her how important it is to study and do well, let her see the results of what she has done so far. Maybe she'll realize she's slacking and pick up the pace, or maybe she'll surprise you and do really well :)

Melissa - posted on 06/27/2011




She just doesn't agree with what her "best interest" is. I remember what it was like to have no say in my life, so on the incidentals (clothes as ling as her body is covered, hair, music, etc) I let her make her own decisions. As long as she presents her self as the self respecting, responsible person she wants to be treated as...I let her be. It has really worked so far...she even comes to me for advice. She knows that I have expectations of her and will let her do her thing as long as they are met. She also knows in no uncertain terms that when those expectations no longer seem important to her..."its mommys turn" and no one wants that!

Emily - posted on 08/16/2010




she's a teenager.take it from someone that just got out of her teenage years (im 21). it's not you, it's just her as a teenager. i think that it's hard for mothers and daughters (especially teenage daughters) to get along sometimes. just do your job as a mother and that's all that you can do.

Kimberly - posted on 08/08/2010




She probably doesn't have anything against you. She's a teenager and that's how they are these days. Try something simple as a family dinner and just talk. It could be as simple as she wants more attention. Ask her how her day was and what she wants to do with her life. Maybe you can offer guidance from there by researching what she'll need for her chosen profession. That should encourage her to work harder and study more.

[deleted account]

It's hormones, nothing else. They can't control their feelings because of all the extra hormones. That's why they sleep alot too. It sounds like we're talking about aliens LOL

Good luck , you just have to stick it out, oh my is this what i'm in for.

[deleted account]

She may feel misunderstood, she is going through changes that are hard to navigate and the damn hormones are surely not helping... I was a raging b*tch as a teenager and looking back, it was (mostly)because I felt like I was not getting respect and not being heard. In my case it was a very big issue and my feelings were legit. However, I would have needed some guidance on HOW to deal with those emotions. If someone had taken the time to teach me how to vent frustration, pain, anger and all properly, it would have changed a lot of my behavior. I learned to scream, yell and shut down because that was what my parents did...

I am not saying that she learns to be snotty from you... I guess all teenage girls are snotty at some point. they test the boundaries no matter how they were raised. the key here IMO is to offer her some ways to cope.. Books about how to deal with feelings, writing a journal, sports, etc...

Moreover, ask her to explain her feelings in a polite and respectful manner. Even if she is extremely pissed off, she can still get her point across without being rude or snotty. make sure you listen attentively to what she is saying when she does speak to you properly. If she is rude, gently remind her to formulate her thoughts differently. If she keeps doing it, just put an end to the conversation. Ask he to write her feelings down and once she has dumped it all on paper, it will be easier for her to express herself. At that age (even later on), girls tend to have so many different feelings piling up, it's hard to make sense of....

It's not going to change on a whim but with hard work it will come.

good luck


*Lisa* - posted on 08/06/2010




Arrghh! Teenage girls!!! Put that one in the 'too hard' basket! My mum is also having a hard time with my teenage sisters. I'm not sure what the key is but know that you are certainly not alone in this. Lots of mums struggle at this age. Is there a support group you can join? Or parenting books that can help with this difficult age?? Good luck!!! She'll get through it :)

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