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-   -   My pre-teen daughter is very emotional--Help (https://www.askmehelpdesk.com/parenting/pre-teen-daughter-very-emotional-help-53063.html)

  • Jan 7, 2007, 09:08 PM
    Anjie1
    My pre-teen daughter is very emotional--Help
    I have a pre-teen daughter who is very emotional. She seems to explode and get so touchy. Tonight she is so upset and crying heavily downstairs because we had a conflict. She was on the computer doing some email stuff, fisnishing up. The only reason she had been on was to email some stuff to her dad for a project. She came across some pictures she wanted and I was trying to explain that she could save them to her gmail account and she could do it later, AFTER her homework was done. But she was in a very excited mood and kept interrupting--I never could finish my sentence, so I finally snapped with, "Shut your mouth." She pushed my button and it turned into some big explosive ordeal, but with her, not me. I wasn't happy, but kept my cool. What it boiled down to was her disrespectfulness, which I reprimanded her for, but still kept my cool. There was no talking to her, she is upset, thinks that I should apologize, and we got into a discussion about interrupting, in which she interrupted me when I was explaining how her interrupting me pushed me. I covered my hand over her mouth, not a hit or slap, just a cover to show that she was doing it again. She got even more mad. What it boiled down to is that I was still trying to talk to her, told her to calm down and that there was no "fight" here. Her only response was, "I don't care, I don't care." And when she talked, she was loud and snotty, which she probably isn't even aware of because she is so worked up. This is so ridiculous, there doesn't need to be a fight, but I will stand my guard and tell her that certainly, YES, when I'm interrupted more than once and the button is pushed, I am certainly in my right to tell her to shut her mouth. She needs to understand that she is 11, and I am the parent and parents and children are NOT equals. Most of the time we have an awesome relationship. I'm so proud of her in many ways. This past year we've had some stupid instances like this so I started counseling with her in the fall. We try to work through some of this, but she does use a lot of time just talking to her counselor. She was a straight A student, up until this year, we are having huge attitudes with the teacher this year---I mean huge. The teacher doesn't like her (that's another story, and YES I've taken steps to try to fix that, too). In fact, I think part of the reason why she was so emotional tonight is because not just a half an hour before she was telling me about more instances with the teacher, and she was very worked up about that. I love my daughter so much, but sometimes I just don't know what to. She's bright, smart and very pretty, and her body is fully grown-up. But these mother/daughter issues are driving me batty. I want to comfort her and love her, but she pushes me away so rudely. I usually just give her some time to calm down and in time she is fine---but the part that bugs me is the DISRESPECT. She needs to take my word, period. She loves to argue, or explain herself through every situation (defensiveness), and she does this with others, too. It makes her come across as "snotty," or "mouthy" and I fear I did something wrong in the parenting. I'm a divorced mother with physical placement (kids see there dad regularly) and my other child is seven and has autism. It's NOT easy, to say the least. I'm just scared for my daughter and don't know what to do to make this situation better. When she breaks down and cries over these stupid things, it is obvious there is a lot of hurt inside her that has nothing to do with the situation that brought it all out. It breaks my heart. What am I supposed to do?
  • Jan 7, 2007, 09:27 PM
    Ace High
    Anjie1,
    Be there for her. She is now coming to be a young woman. Girls age much more quick then boys. She will be extremely emotional. It will be hard on you to be both mom and dad to her. She will try to push her limits with you. You will have to stand your grounds. Best of luck with your daughter. She will be worth your time and effort. --- Ace
  • Jan 8, 2007, 05:09 AM
    J_9
    Anjie1,

    Just so you know you are not alone. I am a mother of a 13 year old daughter. Yes, they get emotional around that age, hormones are kicking in. You have to be patient with her. Heck, she probably doesn't even know what a hormone is much less what is happening to her body and her emotions. We think it is tough, well straight from my daughter's mouth... "Jeez, Mom, I don't know why I cray a lot, I don't know why I get snippy sometimes, I just do, and if you think it is driving you crazy think about how stupid I feel when I just start crying for no reason!!"

    So, she hasn't a clue what is going on too.

    Now, with that said, don't you think that telling her to shut her mouth was a little harsh? You could have waited until she was finished talking to show her how NOT to interrupt, lead by example. Don't you think that putting your hand over her mouth could have been a little harsh too? Think about it, would you want someone to put their hand over your mouth?

    I agree you are the parent and she is the child. However, we have to lead by example and treat our children with the same respect that we expect them to show us. Telling her to shut her mouth and putting your hand over her mouth is not very respectful. Heck I would have gone overboard if my mother did that to me, especially if she is having problems at school with a teacher who does not like her, etc.

    I agree with Ace High that she will try to push your limits and that you have to stand your ground, but I think how you handled the situation was a little overboard in and of itself.
  • Jan 8, 2007, 05:14 AM
    J_9
    Oh, I just thought of an example I use instead of "shut your mouth."

    I say, "excuse me, but I am talking here and when I am finished you may have your turn. Please do not interrupt it is rude." Then I continue on with my thought repeating the above as often as necessary. When I have finished my thought then I tell her "okay, it is your turn to talk now."
  • Jan 8, 2007, 06:18 AM
    Anjie1
    Thanks everybody for replying. I'm not perfect by all means, and when I'm tired there is no way I'm going to say the big ilne you suggested, which is a great suggestion, and I that would be great, but when I'm at my own limit I'm only human. So I guess I learned something. I should have walked away from it and then spoke with her later about it at counseling. Putting my hand over her mouth obviously made things worse for her. It was instinct, I'm not violent and I don't hit, it was just instinct to get her to see what she was doing. Blah. The problem is that in the heat of the moment, we don't think things through. I was so thrown off because it all came on so quickly. I'll try to talk with her about it at counseling tomorrow night and see if the therapist can help us. We've had this spat thing come out in counseling before, and the counselor is trying to make her realize her tone of voice and attitude --- honestly, until counseling, I used to think she was being so difficult on purpose, but you are right, she doesn't have a clue what is going on. When she gets defensive, she is a crank, and this problem is causing her problems with other adults at church youth group and I'm sure at school with the other teacher. I guess the best we can do is live and learn. Thanks, again.
  • May 31, 2012, 06:26 AM
    kayerol
    My daughter is 11 and she has a similar problem. One of the things I have considered is my own responses in the past. I realised I haven't been consistent in my own discipline. I have found out something that works well. Its called reality discipline. You just simply let her begin to inflict her own discipline. If she stays up late and doesn't get to the bus; make sure she's late and call the school. Make sure she knows you will call the school and they can pull the maximum discipline on her. We cannot be a "buddy" to our children. We need to be consistent in our discipline. I use a money system for my own kids. They get 5 dollars a week, but if they swear they lose a certain amount. F they are rude they lose a quarter, and if they are late to the bus I get a dollar for getting them to school. A the end of the week they get what's left.
    Hope this helps.

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