Hi Mark: It’s been a long time since I’ve written, but I wanted some input on my daughter. Ever since she got her license, a year ago March, she has changed dramatically. She has been diagnosed with severe ADHD and they thought possibly borderline bi-polar disorder.
Over the past year, things have slowly gone down hill. When she went back to school in September for her senior year, she just couldn’t deal. She had an attitude with teachers, she was barely getting passing grades (and she is extremely smart and has the capability of being an A student), she started skipping school and hanging out with other kids that skipped. She does not do drugs or alcohol, I know for a fact she is anti-drugs, etc. because she was put on different meds for her adhd and she had severe side effects to most all medications and she is afraid to do anything like that.
She went away with us (her family of six) to Florida in February, and when we returned home, she refused to go to school and quit, with only fifty days to graduation. I dragged her to her doctor and was able to get a note stating she had anxiety in school and with must red tape and phone calls, meetings, etc. (all of which I took care of), she was able to get tutored. To make a long story short, she did get her high school diploma on June 2nd, and she did quite well, all A, B’s and a few C’s. She is working two jobs now and is gone most of the time, but still bucks the system here at home.
I enforce a 12:30 curfew for her, as she does not need to be out all night, she is not a good driver, she has had four accidents (fender benders, all in the driveway) and she is a speed demon. She just bought a new car (mustang) and her car is her life. She has a car payment now that she is going to be held accountable for, car insurance, and her cell phone. She is fine with working towards these things, but she is absolutely miserable to her family.
She always has a sarcastic remark to make to me if I ask her the slightest thing, which might be “Pick up your wet towels after you shower and hang them up”. Everything is a battle, and she is not asked to do much except do her own laundry, hang up her towels and be home by curfew.
She has mostly boy friends, not boyfriends, but guys she hangs out with that she’s known for a year or more, and then new people from work that she’s only known a month or so. Boys are her friends, not girls. She does have maybe two girl friends, but sees mostly the boys. They talk about cars, racing, getting her car to run faster, etc. I’m afraid she’s going to end up in a serious car accident. She has had two speeding tickets within one week of getting her new car. She bought a radar detector so she could still go fast. There is no talking to her. She rolls her eyes and leaves. She is gone all the time. If she is working, she may leave at 7:30 in the morning (to baby-sit), get out of that job, and go to a friend’s house until curfew. She does this daily. She does not make any attempt to talk to me, (especially me because I’m the enforcer), my husband, her 16 year old sister or her twin 12 year old brothers. She comes and goes with an attitude.
She never smiles that much, she doesn’t make conversation and you can’t engage her in any conversation unless its about her car. I’m sick about this. I feel like I’ve lost my daughter, she is not the same person I use to know. I think it would be better if she moved out, but she doesn’t have the money to support herself, she can’t even pay her bills on time unless we are telling her to do it. She acts like such a child but thinks she’s all grown up. I know some of this is a typical eighteen year old attitude, but the disassociation with her family is eating away at me, I don’t get it.
We are an extremely close knit family, have vacationed twice a year together since the time she was five years old, have lots of good memories, have great family values; I am a stay at home mom and have always put my kids first and are here for them. My other three are a breeze, they are easy going and do not like the way my daughter acts. When it was mother’s day, she barely could get the words out to me, when it was our anniversary, we wanted to take the kids out to a nice restaurant because it was our twentieth, and she said she rather be with friends. It’s breaking my heart. I don’t know what to do accept try to be strong, stand my ground, and try to detach emotionally, but that is easier said than done, I miss her. Do you have any advice?
There was one line in your email that greatly concerns me. You said, “…she is not asked to do much except do her own laundry, hang up her towels and be home by curfew” – none of which she is doing.
This statement coupled with the fact that you are allowing her to continue to live at YOUR house without following any house rules tells me what? You guessed it! This is a classic example of over-indulgence.
I do not want to chastise …so please don’t get upset with me here. But I would recommend that you review the Online Version of the eBook (be sure to listen to all the audio). A refresher course would be helpful I think.