Raising teens sucks :)
I have just started reading the book, "Yes, your teen is crazy." Funny, the book has been on my shelf for 5 years. It was one of the zillion self-help books I bought when going through the teens with my now 21-year old. Who ever thought I'd be having this experience with my 16 y.o. ????? Two completely different kids, raised in two completely different environments (my ex had my son for 3 years from age 12-15). I thought my son's behaviors were due to his environment with his dad (and there is no question the impact was devastating, as his dad is an alcoholic and gambling addict who in the middle of his very active use was unable to formulate anything remotely close to a boundary) yet here I find myself with a teen daughter who seems to have been visited one night by an alien spaceship and suddenly become this hostile, angry, secretive, lying, hateful girl. I do not fool myself - my style of parenting hasn't always been exemplary - I've been very detective-like and snoopy in her business; she would call it stalkerish. It was the change in friends that brought about my concerns. I think the experience with my son freaked me out (5 rehabs) along with her terrible grades and complete lack of effort with her schooling - she came home with 3 F's and 2 D's last week. I've tried it all - rewards, punishment, taking away the phone, the computer, ignoring, nagging, begging, yelling, buying, and the list is endless, and none of it successful. She hates the man with whom I've been in relationship for 6 years and she hates his children too. I'm considering ending the relationship because frankly, it's just too hard and honestly, I don't think I'm in love with him. I know she has tried alcohol and many of her friends smoke weed although she claims she has never tried it. She acknowledged the alcohol when I asked her about it. She currently wants to live parttime with her dad who recently returned from Afghanistan as a private contractor to complete a 6-week jail sentence and home-monitoring for 6 weeks. He has no job. The fear literally immobilizes me. He has not raised her since she was 5 and I received sole custody with supervised visitations in Nov 2007. I suspect his sobriety will be short-lived as he participates in no recovery program. I can't count the sleepless nights I've had worrying about doing the right thing, making the right decision, feeling guilty for many of my choices, saying the right thing, so much guilt. It has surely taken its toll on me and I feel as thought I've aged 20 years over the last 10. When I started a family I had no idea it would head in the direction it is going - like a tornado. Currently, as I write this, I can hear her in the bedroom on her phone - it is 11:15 and a school night. I just don't know what direction to go. Sooooooo, I was searching online tonight looking for insight and frankly, answers, and came across the title of the book "Yes, Your Teen Is Crazy" and here I sit, just writing so I can get it out. It all feels quite hopeless right now. Thanks for listening.
You need to get to a counselor yesterday to sort out this complex and scary situation. There are many parts that need to be nailed down to include your relationship with your daughter, the relationship with your ex (you guys need a plan to safely co-parent this girl since at 15 your State's laws might allow her to choose where she lives) and finally, how best for you to parent her. Please move quickly since this is a critical time in your girl's life. To get her to the counselor be prepared to bribe her if you must, but do it saying that you guys AS A FAMILY need help, and that you are sure there are lots of things that you could do better, things that the counselor may be able to help.
Dr. Mike Bradley
My heart goes out to you. I can read your worry, anxiety with plenty of reasons. I think Dr. Bardley's advice of seeking therapy is a must, and fast. Do bribe her, who cares! The ultimate result is what really matters.
More than likely she has done weed as well. That is a reality that I had to face and it just changes everything when you find out. Your level of stress and anxiety go through the roof!
One important thing is that I started getting help and acting on my daughter's issues a little too late. She turned 18 in the fall so, my biggest advice is act on this NOW that she is a minor. Once they are 18, everything becomes very, very difficult, and your bargaining chips are very few.
Good luck, God bless, and please let us know what you decide to do.