12 yr old daughter

kimmylaJuly 31, 2013

I am a single parent of a 12 yr old girl. For the first 10yrs of her life she was a daddy's girl. That all changed abruptly for her when he left me for a 20 yr old. She's had very limited contact with him as he has bounced around from state to state.
We moved back to my hometown and my family friends and I have noticed shes changed in such a little amount of time. She tells her friends extravagant lies, such as having cancer , being asked to kick the football for the Dallas Cowboys.... I found out she has been sexting boys. She never did any of this before we moved. She was active in sports and cheer and tumble. This town we moved to doesn't have much for her to do plus it's a much bigger school. She is immediately drawn to any male that shows her attention. Thy tell her they love her and she feels that she's fallen in love with them. I've taken away her cell phone and Facebook...but nothing seems to get her attention. I feel she's trying to replace her dad but I don't know. I don't have anyone to talk to as my family says for me to just take everything away until se 18. I don't see that as a logical fix for the situation.
I would appreciate any input ...thanks so much ..

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Well it sounds like she is trying to get attention. she is probably very unsettled by the fact that her father has fled and feels abandoned. I guess there would be a grieving process with such an upheaval.

She has also had to contend with moving schools and all the emotion that involves.

At the same time she is probably going through puberty and her hormones are bouncing around her body.

it can be a very difficult time in a girl's life and unfortunately her mother is standing close by, sometimes being used as a punching bag !

perhaps you could seek out a school counsellor to give you some ideas.

Taking things away from her is not going to work, because she will just get resentful and it will cause more friction.

I guess you must keep in mind that you are aiming for her to be responsible, and that is what will earn her privileges. Perhaps you could get her to do some cooking once a week, or at least go out for a walk and talk with you.

keep chipping away at building a relationship with her, it sounds very difficult at this point, but in the long run she will get through the mine field.

All the best to you.

Do some reading, also, about teenagers.

    Bookmark   August 1, 2013 at 2:30AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I'm so sorry you and your daughter are going through this.

My suggestion is first of all, get some counseling for her.

Second, help her find some things to do that will keep her busy and around other girls who are nice. I think sports are a wonderful way for girls to stay involved. If you can't find something, ask your family and friends what their girls do to stay busy and involved. Church groups, band, horses?

To me those middle school years are particularly difficult years to have family upheaval hit. Investing in counseling now might head off some worse problems later.

I'm sure this is a difficult time for you as well. I hope your family and friends are supportive and you yourself are healing.

    Bookmark   August 1, 2013 at 11:44AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Kimmyla: I was once in your daughter's shoes. Parent's divorced when I was 3, had a horrible relationship with my dad until I was 16, dad used to work a lot, not show up to get me when he said he would etc... and Mom's house had 1 of her 4 bfs after dad in it.. so let's just say I was a pretty confused little girl. I was doing the EXACT thing you say your daughter was doing... She probably really doesn't like her father right now, understandably. I was wondering though, if there is any close family you have there?... possibly an uncle or a good friend's husband.. right now what she needs is some positive influence from a male figure who can provide that for her...providing you can explain the situatioon before hand and try not to let her know it is some kind of set-up. If you let her get too far she will find it in boys and follow their lead... whatever that may be. She needs to understand that the feelings she has about her father are okay, and she needs someone to express those to... and no offence it may not be you. Couselllors would be good, but if she is anything like I was I didn't see a point in talking to anyone I didn't know, I also thought I knew it all at age 12 haha. Anyway, you must be extremely actively involved right now and watching what shes doing and who she hangs around with as friends. She is seeking acceptance and love, she knows you love her and you are there but she probably has this empty hole emotionally she will try to fill. Whether it be friends, or a bf. It's not your love that will fix this problem right away as complicated as that sounds. Taking things from her will only push her farther away from you right now,but she obviously needs rules... You have to find a way to build her self confidence/self-esteem. I'm not too sure why but it also sounds as though her self confidence is low. I'm not sure where you live, but there is thing online called the DOVE campaign... And the website gives excellent ideas for things to do and say to young girls and how to build their self-esteem. (I have been doing the exercises with my step-daughter). If she has the self-confidence, self-esteem and family support she will take these with her in the situations she finds herself in.. such as when someone is trying to take advantage of her, or pressure her into doing something she shouldn't be..She needs the confidence to say no, I don't care what Jane wants me to do, I don't have to because I don't want to. Even girl friends at school. Don't give up on her, and I know it may be exhausting and a never ending process, but my mom didn't and I pulled through the other side. It was a bumpy road, and some of the things she did or said I hated her in the moment... But I hope you find the strength to be her rock right now. She needs a hobby again to keep her occupied, and keep her remembering that she is good at something.. this too will build her self-esteem. I'm not sure on what terms you are with your ex-h but I would seriously call him and tell him what his absence is doing to her. She may be mad at him for various reasons, and she may HATE his guts for putting you through this, but he still has a daughter approaching her teens and she needs him. He needs to know this... If he chooses not to contact etc then thats a different story, but for him to just leave you with all this and abandon his daughter is extremely irresponsible of him. I have a lot of other really uncharming things to say about it but I will keep my mouth shut. He needs to know what is going on, and the reprocussions which will be if she continues down this path. He is her father, he is 50% responsible for her and he should NEVER let some woman get in the middle of that. If he doesn't want to help her and help you out with her then so be it. For now though, be strong because this road is going to get a lot bumpier. Another thing, when I was younger I was really close to an older female cousin of mine (4 yrs diff) and I would confide in her about everything I never told my mom. She would tell my mom behind my back things so she was in the loop... and could help me or guide me. She wouldn't tell mom everything but when it was really bad, or to do with my safety she would. Later, I found all this out and I was grateful that she almost saved my life a few times.

Stay strong!!
Sorry it is so long, it really hit home for me.
My thoughts and prayers are with you!

    Bookmark   August 3, 2013 at 12:28PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Thank you so much for the advice everyone. I do appreciate it so much. My brother has been a wonderful father figure to her. She will tell everyone he's the best dad she will never have. Since all this with her started he's been doing more things with her. He knows she's interested in CSI so luckily he's a deputy here in our county in Illinois and has been able to take her to the crime lab with him. I can honestly say that was the first time in a quite a while she was truly happy.
I've been trying to keep her busy. She's now participating in our church choir. Just the other day I did find out some boy she's been talking to has been declaring his undying love to her. She replied back with the usual I love yous ..you're amazing ect ect.... I read a text he sent her and it said something like, "isn't it weird how we've never spoken face to face but we feel so much love?" I asked her why she would tell him she loved him if he's never spoken face to face before and she said, "I don't know I just always say it back " ...
Her birthday is in Dec and her dad didn't call her on her last birthday. Instead he sent a text that said I hope you have a great day. She's still pretty upset about that. I don't talk bad about him infront of her. Knowing him as wellas I do I knew she would eventually figure him out. When she was 8 he sat her down and told her he didn't love me anymore but that he loved another woman and was moving out. Long story short he moved out with a 21 yr old. Stupid me let him come back. He told our daughter he was sorry and that he would never ever leave us again. Three weeks later he left for a 20 yr old and they moved in two houses beside us. He never made an attempt to spend time with our daughter even two houses away. That lasted two yrs until he met someone on the Internet and moved to Oklahoma. So I'm positive she's harboring ill feelings about all that too.
This week has been a good week. I'm taking it day by day. I've taken all your advice to heart and I thank you so much.

    Bookmark   August 4, 2013 at 11:56AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Have you told her dad how she is acting towards men?

    Bookmark   August 7, 2013 at 12:53PM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
New cervical cancer vaccine - You & Your Daughter
My 16 yr old daughter & I are in the process of...
Estrangement from adult child
I am, and have been, estranged from my adult child...
To parents of other heavy gamers...
Please do not attempt to moderate or restrict your...
Mothers of estranged children....part II
I thought it might ease the posting if I restarted...
Nearly 10wks pregnant & have questions
This is my first pregnancy at 24. I don't have many...
Sponsored Products
Square Thermostatic Twin Shower Faucet Mixer Concealed Chrome Valve
Hudson Reed
Home Decorators Area Rug: Standard Flokati Hot PInk 5' x 8'
Home Depot
Cicadas Party Collection Box
| Dot & Bo
Scatter Giclee Shade 10x10x12 (Spider)
$69.99 | Lamps Plus
Olde Bronze Outdoor Post Mt 4-Light
Vessel Sinks Red Rose Glass Praego 8 Petal Vessel Sink
The Renovator's Supply, Inc.
Dino's 24Karrot Carrot Cake - NA
$85.00 | Horchow
Edison 415M Bath Bar
People viewed this after searching for:
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™