Help!!! Adult daughter is STILL disrespectful.

Angela - posted on 12/26/2012 ( 4 moms have responded )




When my daughters were 7 and 2, I divorced their father. By a bizarre turn of events, he won custody when the girls were 12 and 7, at my oldest daughter's request of wanting to live with them. Within a year, the girls found out that life wasn't going to be what was promised and wanted to move back, but I was drained of finances and did not have the emotional fight in me anymore, nor was their father going to give up custody and take the chance of having to pay me child support. My youngest daughter was the one most affected. At 7, she was having accidents in her pants, always fideting, nervous, started lying when it came to anything to do with her father and step-mother. On weekends they would be with me, both of them would be fideting around an hour before they were going to be picked up by their father, pacing and watching out the windows, but they would talk about why much less admit what they were doing. She had a real fear of her step-mother, but would never tell me why. I wanted to start taking her to a counselor on the evenings of my visitation, but was denied that by her father. And I'm not sure what was said to her but she started telling me that she didn't want to go like she was scared. They would meet me at my car when I picked her up and make me promise that I was not going to take her to a counselor or I would never get her again. When my youngest was 14, she called me and told me about some things going on and said that with the help of the school nurse, wrote a letter to the judge to request her to be placed in my home. By this time her older sister was moved out and on her own. There was a psychological eval ordered by the judge for her father and his wife and my husband and I. Her father and his wife refused to go and just gave over custody. Oh, the trouble we have had on hands since! I started taking her to a counselor, but that didn't seem to help her. She became very disrespectful and just plain downright hateful at times, and to this day, lies so much, I can't predict when she's telling the truth. I found out that she was having sex (from her sister) at 15 and confronted her about it at which time she tried to hit me. And oh my Gosh- the drama. I was constantly getting calls from the school principal that she was in some kind of confrontation or fight, all because she didn't know when to keep her mouth shut. She was dating total losers- one guy looked like a girl who fell face-first into a tacklebox, was a high school drop-out, 19 and didn't work. Now that I look back on it, I NEVER had control of the situation. At 17, she comes home with her boyfriend of (and I think I'm being generous) 3 weeks and informs me that she is pregnant. This is the boy who recently got out of the mental institution for telling her that he wants to seriously be like Dexter and go out and kill people. Come to find out, he has been a distubed person and under a doctor's care for most of his life. Scary think is that he is a master manipulator and hides it well. The day she turned 18, she moved into his parent's house. I didn't talk to her for several months. She would call in the middle of the night from time to time demanding that I come get her because they got into a fight and would call me names and tell me that I didn't love her when I refused. They ended up moving out on their own when our grandson was several weeks old, and by all signs looked they might be ok. It looked like the best case scenario. They got married in June of this year and when we went on a family vacation in August, he decided to try and have sex with one of her friends while she was away. It is over, but the drama continues. She and my grandson have been living with us for about three months now. My husband and I love him dearly. He is such a good baby and we are afraid that his parent's actions are going to destroy that. If I try to talk to her about anything that she shouldn't be doing, it ends in a shouting match and she tells me she and her son are moving out... and it's never her fault- it's mine, or her father's, or the neighbor's, or the postman's, ect. She's been attending parties, drinking, and acting very unlady-like, and that's putting it mildly. First off, she won't ever be able to afford to live on her own. Second, I would always worry about who my grandson is spending time with. Third, I don't think my grandson would receive the love and nurturing that he receives from my husband and I. At least here, he has stability. She takes pictures of him and posts them on facebook calling him the most important thing in her life but her actions say otherwise. The main thing she is after right now is to find another man. Oh how oh how do I deal with this?

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Leah - posted on 10/26/2013




Hi Angela ,sounds like you told my story minus a marriage ,divorce and custody but I can relate to the having a daughter exactly like yours all the way down to posting pics of my Grandson professing how important he is and how she loves him so much and like your daughter her actions speak louder than her words ,I am a new Gramma he's my first one . My life became all about her problems and I would bail her out when she left home and moved to be with her bf in another state and they would get into a fight his mother would kick her out (before she had the baby) and call me at 3am asking me to help her and nothing was ,has ever been, and will never be her fault (that just kills me) she is never grateful for anything I have done for her ! she's 22 now she was always a stubborn child hard to discipline even kicking her out when she was 17 didn't break her spirit and when I would tell friends family members how she treated me behind closed doors they didn't believe me telling me things like she'll grow out of it ,she acts very different towards me when we're around others ! it's basically parent abuse !!! she just moved with my grandson to be with the baby's father in a different state and she has not taken him to get his 6 months shots and he's 9 months now ,and not to mention my daughter and her bf have a domestic violent relationship and it's very mutual they beat each other up,argue and they are staying with his mom and siblings and the house is infested with roaches ,I shared all this to let you know you're not alone and what I have to do is look out for the safety of my grandson ! I have done everything I can for my daughter and I let that guilt go along time ago that i wasn't a good mom to her ect ,because my daughter is a master manipulator she picked up on how I felt and used my guilt button against me for so long til I caught on , I have had to let her go! and let her live her own life and let her deal with her choices and not bail her out anymore and focus more on my grandson and his safety ,I advise you to do the same because the stress from your daughters is not good for you or your health if that is the way she is you're not gonna be able to change her ,you have to change yourself and it's not easy I know ,if she wants to treat you like that and play house then when the house crumbles sort to speak and she wants to come back to you tell her she can't but that you will take in your Grandson I am in this same position my only concern is the baby she can take care of herself .I hope this helps I really do I know the internal struggle you're dealing with inside yourself !!

Michelle - posted on 12/27/2012




This line struck a chord with me:
"and it's never her fault- it's mine, or her father's, or the neighbor's, or the postman's, ect."

My Aunt (who is into her 50's) still blames everyone else for the way her life turned out instead of admitting to the choices SHE made.

I really don't have any more advice than what Ariana has said. She needs help finding her place in life and not relying on others. She needs to be given the tools to be able to make good choices.

Angela - posted on 12/27/2012




Thanks for the advice, Ariana. I think I have her talked into going to counseling again. You have some good ideas about getting her to spend valuable time with my grandson. I have not seen any abuse and as far as I know when she is is doing stuff that she shouldn't be, my grandson is with his father. I only know too well that these 2 world collide at some point. If I could just get her to understand that the most important man in her life right now should be her son, that would be a great start. Thanks again for the encouragement.


Ariana - posted on 12/27/2012




Get a family councellor involved for all of you. Have you and your husband go and tell her you'd like her to join. If she refuses there's nothing you can do to force her, but at least a councellor will allow you someone to talk to who can help you deal with this situation and find tools as what you need to do get things on track and gain respect.

I think she needs to see a councellor and work out all these issues, but at this age you have to convince her that it's a good idea for her. You can't force her to change. You can see a councellor for yourselves and see what you can do to help change the situation.

It's a tough situation she's got you in, because if you make her leave the childs at risk, if you don't she's going to continue acting like a child.

I think right now you need to show her how to act and what you need to do. If there are problems take the biggest one (whatever that is) and try to talk to her about it CALMLY. Only work on things that are effecting either you, or her son. Try to facilitate ways for her to become a calmer person and a better mother. So instead of saying 'you need to spend more time with your son' get her to bring him to swimming classes every week (the mother and kid ones etc.) or something else they can do together. Try to get her involved in things for her life (a job, college, etc.) or even a yoga class or something!

This girl is in a horrible pattern in her life, she's been acting a certain way, acting a certain way, and she's with you for three months and you expect her to act differently. Having a kid doesn't make you more mature, it makes you an immature person with a lot more responsibility. Convince her to get parenting classes ANYTHING that is going to start helping her get out of her normal behaviors. This is a process of change.

Also if she IS somehow a danger to this child (which I hope she isn't) document any incidents that are happening. The incident, the date etc. I don't believe people should have their children taken away for no reason, so if she's just not up to your standards I don't think you should try to take the child. But if she's abusive, neglectful, or doing drugs etc. around this child that is another story. I hope that isn't the case but still.

Once again, go to a family councellor, try to get her involved. Even a personal councellor for her (as well as family councellor) may help. You can only change YOUR behavior, you can't change hers. So find out what you can do to become part of the solution to this problem.

Also try to get her to make small changes in her lifestyle. She's not going to change overnight but if you don't allow her to act in certain ways she can't. Or if you try to help her learn there are other ways to act, be, hopefully it will rub off on her.

It sounds like a complicated situations so you really do need to get some professional help on this.

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