20 May 2021 at 8:50 pm #54412
I’m a single mum to 2 daughters. Domestically violent ex who is still in his daughters lives when it suits (sees them every couple of months for a couple of hours, throws money their way, CMS is £6.72 per week for 2 children). He treats them like a mate so lets them get away with everything whilst i’m stricter, but no moreso than any other parent.
Today, my 14 year old eldest decided to go to London behind my back. We live on the South Coast, 2 hours train ride away. She’s home now but I’m devastated as she doesn’t understand why I’m upset, blames me because I’ve grounded her and cancelled a sleepover because of it and her father is being all nice and gentle about it. I’m exhausted by the lack of respect and horrible behaviour but she never calls him that. Calls me the f and c word and as I said dad just says its teen behaviour. If I ground her she goes out anyway and I’m dealing with all this alone. I’m at the end of my tether with her.21 May 2021 at 9:33 am #54422
I am sorry you are having such a rough time at the moment. When something like.this happens do you contact your ex ? When you say he laughs it off are you speaking to him, or is your daughter saying this is what he says?
Did your daughter leave a note saying where she was going? Does she have her own money and use it to get the ticket? Did she go with friends, or on her own? Why was she going to London – shopping, meeting people? Did she miss anything she was supposed to do to go there?
Did you ground her for going to London, not telling you where she was going, stealing money to go?
If she left you a note to say she was going, went with friends, used her own money, didn’t miss anything else she should.have been doing and has been to London with friends before then I think you need to accept that she is growing up and parents are not as important to her as they were.
I would try waiting until things have calmed down then discuss what you don’t like with her. Discuss the use of bad language ( and make sure you don’t use any yourself ) and how you don’t do that so it’s not acceptable in the house. If she didn’t tell you where she was speak to her about how worried you were. Discuss the recent murders of young women with her and say if you don’t know where she is you worry something like that has happened.
If she stole money to go why not speak to her about a way of getting her own money. She is old enough to get a paper round or do babysitting to earn some money.
At her age some things won’t occur to her . The risk centre of the brain doesn’t fully develop until in your twenties. You cannot make her see things the way you do however much you ground her. So look at what is actually worrying you about her behaviour and try and deal with that. But she isn’t a little.girl.any more.so to a certain extent you have to still be her support blanket when she needs you but let her explore things a bit.
And think whether she was working on the theory of it.is easier to gain forgiveness than permission. Make sure your answer to the same question at different times is the same ( consistent boundaries). If it isn’t explain why. ( You could do X last time.but this time I don’t have the money/ auntie b is coming over / you have school tomorrow )
I would.also make sure you separate your understandable anger at your ex.from your daughter. If she does something that reminds you of your ex and is a trigger for you own it. My twins sometimes are so like my ex I find myself reacting disproportionately to their behaviour ( ex alcoholic cheater Disneyland dad moved 4 hours away with affair partner).
I would also accept the fact your ex is not a decent parent and stop looking for any input from him.You know.he.isnt going to back you up so stop looking for backup from him. Speak to your friends etc not him.
Good luck21 May 2021 at 9:44 am #54426
She wasn’t given permission by me to go. She had a half day at school as her year group were finishing at 12.45. She said she was meeting a friend and hanging out in town. She had only £15 to her name. She messaged me later in the day to say she was ok, no saying where she was. Later on she messaged and told me she had gone to Portsmouth where I said she was not given permission and needed to get the first train home. 20 minutes later she said she had not been completely truthful and that she was in London and struggling to get a train home as many had been cancelled. I’m happy to let her explore a bit as you say which I do as she is out with her friends quire a lot but I certainly draw the line with trips to a place she hasn’t been to since she was 11 without me where she knows no one and has very little money in the event anything goes wrong.
She has been rude, abusive and aggressively violent with me since the age of 10. All roads to seek help have been fruitless. Stemming from her father’s violence towards me, which she was witness to at the very end of our relationship. When she sees him he openly mocks me in front of her and her sister, told her she doesn’t need to go to school or take exams (GCSE’s are next year). She plays one of us off against the other constantly. I feel I’m losing her to him.21 May 2021 at 9:57 am #54431
If I say she’s grounded she tells me to f off, which she did this morning. I’m doing all this alone with zero support and I feel so low because as I said I’m losing her.21 May 2021 at 8:23 pm #54528
Have you ever looked at the website Empowering Parents. It’s my fav and I’ve read them all! There are numerous articles on teenagers and abuse like this. They give examples of scenarios, what to say to your teenage kids and how to give consequences and make them stick.
She has a mum who loves her and cares for her and she is abusive towards her. It’s not on. You can tell her you love her, you care for her, you will always have her back but you will not tolerate abuse any longer. This is pretty seberey abuse and it has got to stop.
Read some articles on the websites I mention and see if it helps. They do suggest you actually involve the Police if it turns to physical violence and I agree. It doesn’t mean their lives are ruined, it’s a sure fire way to say you won’t abuse me and stop them becoming adult abusers as they mature.
Have you read any books or online resources about setting personal boundaries and abuse. I see you’ve had a history of abuse with the ex and this must be so triggering for you. You are not wholly responsible for everything your daughter does. She can choose to follow your guidance and role model or not. It isn’t all your fault if she doesn’t. She is taking the absolute pi** speaking to you like that.
I think your last line,’you’re scared of losing her to him’ might tell you something. I know myself that this is a fear of mine, even subconsciously, and it will seep out and influence what you do and how you respond to your kids. I believe kids have great instincts and can sense this, it’s a vulnerability in many single mums and I believe our little darlings can exploit this, even if we think we are hiding it.