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Does your material work on kids who don't live with you...?

Hi Mark,

I found your website in my search for guidance on handling rage-filled, rebellious teens. I am sure I'm not in a unique situation, (though it feels like it) and wondered if your information would help when it's a divided home setting.

To make a long story somewhat shorter, my husband got custody of his 4 children when his youngest was 3. Their mother walked out on them. I married him when she was 5, and was mother to all of the kids. The 2 oldest refused to see their bio mom (at about ages 13 and 14 - she mentally and physically abused them, alcoholic, addicted to prescriptions due to a back injury, you get the picture). The middle child saw bio-mom about 40 days a year (per parenting agreement) until she was 13 then refused to see her (drunk, bringing strange men over, etc.). Our youngest, out of all the children though, has steadfastly seen bio-mom, and 2 years ago wanted to start living there 1/2 time and with us 1/2 time when she was 11. She is now 13.

She has been struggling with her sexuality, and has had major upheavals with her friends. She is full of anger and if anyone (family or friend) does something she doesn't like, or agree with, she explodes. A "girlfriend" apparently liked another girl, and that set her off and she downed 10 Tylenol, then told us, so she was taken to the ER and then to a psychiatric hospital for a few days. During that stay, she announced she wanted her mother to be her legal guardian and to live there full time. This was at the end of November of last year.

During this whole timeframe, and months previously, she's been in therapy for counseling. It's not doing any good. The therapist will say she won't accept responsibility for any of her behaviors or any of her actions. And if she doesn't want to get better, she won't.

About 10 days after she got out of the psychiatric hospital, she was at our house. And she lied one lie too many. My husband and she had a major blow-up and he was tired of the disrespect. She threatened to run away, and he thought "take her to her mother's or have to call the police". So he took her to her mother's. And though we've tried repeatedly to have sessions with her, with the counselor, trying to arrange family dinners (she has siblings that she is also not seeing and rarely talking to as well), all she does is blame us. We kicked her out. We don't love her. Yadda. But we also know that she is at her mother's because there is no discipline at all. She hangs with the wrong crowd over there, her mother is on morphine and about 4 other "prescribed" meds so is in zombie land most of the time, her grades are the worst they've ever been (currently flunking 4 classes), and of course, we're to blame because we kicked her out of the house. She's getting into in school suspensions, being disrespectful to her teachers, etc.

The therapist says for my husband (as our daughter's rage is directed at him personally) to continue reaching out to her as it takes away her excuse -- if we are trying to see her and she's the one refusing, then she can't blame us. I guess that is the theory anyway.

My dilemma is this: Does your material work on kids who don't live with you, and who are being (I think brainwashed) by the ex-spouse who is just as angry and bitter at being divorced, and having 3 of her children do to her what this last one is doing to us? To me, our youngest daughter is a possession for her. A prize. A way to get additional monies from us each month. The bio mom wants to be the cool mom. The friend. The come hang at our house mom. The mom who lets high school kids take her child in their car and our daughter doesn't even know them -- but hey, they are a ride to a school event because zombie mom can't drive her. Sorry, I digress.

Can one-sided attempts by us using your information somehow get through to our daughter? All we can do is email or text her, and she doesn't respond. She is sinking fast, is on medication herself for depression, and I'm just at my wits end. Therapy is a joke and she's heading for disaster. Her sisters say she's a punk and they are tired of her b.s. and don't want to even talk to her. And if they do, it's all about safe subjects.

If you have any ideas, or even direction you can point me to for help, I'd SURE appreciate it.

Thanks so much in advance for your time and help,



Hi Beth,

Re: Does your material work on kids who don't live with you...

If your child does not live with you, but is dependent on you financially, partially or fully -- the program will work. Otherwise, it probably won't.


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