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Teenagers!!!!

autumngems

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I swear I will be bald by the time she graduates in 2017.

She met the perfect boy and they have been dating for three months he is sweet, smart and very loving.
Last night she texted me, Mom, can I have friends? I said of course why?

Apparently the boyfriend does not want her to have friends that are boys and is very adamant about it. Having been in this type of situation with her first boyfriend she wanted to make sure he understood she is going to have other firends, boys and girls and that he needs to trust her.
She met this boy through some of her friends (boys and girls), now they are turning their backs on her because she isn't going along with the no friends that are boys mentality and they say she is hurting the current boyfriend.

I told her all you can do is explain that you WILL have friends of both sexes, you are my boyfriend, you need to trust me. She's really hurt that her friends have turned on her though.

Stressing me out because i get the aftermath: moody crying teen
 

OoohShiny

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Not wishing to be a doom-monger, and with no experience of looking after teenagers (and still feeling like one myself... :???: ) IMHO you need to take a very firm stance immediately with no messing around and, I think, invite said boyfriend and his parents round for a meal (read: to 'have a chat').

Trying to control one's partner is bullying and, if allowed to continue unchecked, can lead to 'I only hit her because she didn't do as I said', and other such nonsense BS excuses for domestic violence. :evil:


If I may just quickly relate a story...

... I was once on a train home from the city. The carriage was relatively empty; I was sitting on one side of the carriage facing backwards and on the opposite side of the walkway down the middle, facing the same way, was a young couple, perhaps early- to mid-twenties, he quite stockily built, her very slight.

I became aware that he was talking intently to her under his breath - not in a good 'deep in personal conversation in a public place' way, but in a clearly threatening 'I am not happy and you better do what I say, but I'm trying to do it so no-one else can see' kind of way.

This continued for the best part of 20 minutes before we arrived at the station, and she got up and off and I followed her, leaving him getting up slowly in a 'look how moody and angry I am, I will take my own goddamn time to get off this train' kind of way.

As we passed past the last window of the carriageway I said quietly to her "Are you ok? If you need help you should talk to your family, they will be supportive if you are in trouble." She smiled ever so meekly and said "Thank you".

Whether she ever did get out of what was clearly an abusive relationship, I don't know. I hope so, I think I recognised her as a friend of one of my friends, both of whom went to an excellent all-girls school and therefore know right from wrong, but I still think of that trip now, perhaps 10 years from when it happened.

All I can think is "Should I have gone and sat opposite them and got his aggression focused on me so perhaps he might have started a fight and I could have got him arrested?", "Should I have slipped her my (female) friend's number to call on the pretext of a school reunion, rather than a random bloke's number which the aggressor might have physically 'punished' her for having in her possession?", "Should I have reported him to the police?"...


Don't take any sh!t - if you have to be the big bad mother and pull her out from that group of so-called 'friends', do it. She will thank you in the future and you will hopefully save her from any risk of getting into a cycle of choosing men who are abusive - "I won't go out tonight because it's easier to keep him happy if I don't" is the thin end of the wedge...


To admit something I don't usually talk about, I have been on the other end - I was effectively emotionally manipulated over time, to the point that I ended up controlled by an ex-girlfriend so no-one else could spend any time with me (I recall one incident where she made it extremely difficult to visit my nan in hospital, even though it was the week or so before she eventually died :| , and another where she slammed her front door in my mother's face because my mother was not allowed to see me) and after the inevitable break-up (her fault because I, seemingly now her pet, was too obedient and was not exciting enough for her any more so she was looking elsewhere for her sexual thrills) I found it extremely difficult to adjust to a 'normal' relationship. The highs and lows of the abusive relationship are/were so extreme compared to the usually happy medium found within a normal relationship, that a victim (or me, anyway) can actively seek an abusive relationship because a normal relationship seems to have something 'missing'.

It took another relationship and then several years on my own to realise that people really can just have a relationship where both sides are happy and one is not controlling the other, and even now, 18 or so years after, and in a happy relationship with an amazing lady who loves me no matter what happens, I find I revert to a withdrawn, obedient lapdog position as soon as any issues arise in my current relationship, which drives my fiané utterly insane (because she hates to see me like it and also resents the implication that she is in some way like my ex girlfriend).


So, after that somewhat franker than planned post :shock: :???: I would recommend getting tough straight from the off and making it crystal clear to this boy that he gets over his childish mindset or GTFO.
 

autumngems

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Ooohshiney,

Thank you for your words, they are helpful. I am so sorry you had to go through your experience.

My daughter is going to school (junior), had a job and a boyfriend (he just graduated), rarely got to see her friends and now that she isn't working she has went to a couple of football games or out on a boat with friend and their family and he doesn't like it.

I plan on talking to her again tonight about this. Her firs tboyfriend turned into a stalker and I had to end up going to the school about it.

I was quite surprised when she told me this boyfriend was acting like this as he has always been so nice, and loving.
 

Jambalaya

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Just a minute, she is being loyal to her friends by not giving in to the boyfriend's demands that she only see people he approves of, and the friends' reaction is to cold-shoulder her?? For still seeing them?

So, wait a minute: The friends are all part of the abuse. The King says "Do This" and the court turns their back on her for refusing to obey him? What kind of a sick set-up is this? What, is this guy a mafia son or something??

Your daughter needs to dump the entire lot of them and make new friends! How dare a whole group of people try to control her like this! I'm quite outraged on her behalf. This is nothing more than group bullying. I'm guessing your daughter is a sweet, lovely person, and they are mistaking that for weakness.

I am sure her college is full of thousands of nice people to be friends with. The way ahead is to join some new clubs and activities, so she can meet secure people who don't need to dominate others to feel good. And she shouldn't worship at the altar of friendship too much. Our society says that friends are so important but actually, unless they're the right friends, they can be very detrimental to one's wellbeing - and they come and go, anyway. She can fill her time by being part of various communities on campus linked to activities she enjoys. She doesn't need this crap.

Poor thing - she's only young and doesn't have the experience to deal with this kind of thing. But she must stick up for herself. Attempts at control are something that drive me utterly crazy - if I were her, I'd tell the entire lot of them to stick it where the sun don't shine. And she mustn't be afraid of being on her own for a while. There are way, way worse things than being on your own.
 

autumngems

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She met him through this group of friends and they say she is hurting him by talking to other people, It's crazy.

She is young and sweet and easily hurt. Nothing worse than seeing your kid cry.
 

Jambalaya

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Yeah. She needs to dump them all. They are all worshiping this guy and being controlling toward her. They don't care about her needs - in this case, her need for a variety of friends. All they care about is making their king happy.

If you can get her to see that these people do not care about her, their priority is the Rat King, maybe she'll see that any further time and investment with this group and this boy is a waste of her time. It took me a while to learn not to give my time to people who don't care about me.
 

House Cat

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The pressure these kids get it horrendous. As parents, we can sometimes almost feel their pain because we see them emoting... the air becomes thick with their pain...we want to do SOMETHING.


The only thing we can do is offer the best guidance and allow them to make their own decisions. Making social mistakes is the best way for them to learn for the future. It is HONESTLY best for them to make these sorts of mistakes while they are still under our roofs. This way we can still be there for them.

It was really hard for me to get this.

I have one who left home too soon (long story, step son, really not my fault) and he is blazing through his life at a frightening pace with no safety net. It is the scariest thing for a parent to experience. I fear for him every day. When he was in our house, because he had been a victim of abuse, I tried to shelter him from everything, hold him too tight...I shouldn't have done that, because, like I said, no real lessons and no safety net now.

The other two of my oldest children were able to muck up a bit while under care. Their lives are much more normal and happy. Being there for them while they lament, cry, hurt, process was the best gift I could give them.


If she chooses to give into the social pressures that these kids are putting on her, she will learn. If she chooses not to, she will learn from that too. Right now, she is learning how much it sucks to have someone dictate her life. She will probably learn to choose friends better when she gets to college. Right now, she is stuck with a smaller pool for friends. Soon, she will have a HUGE pool to choose from. Hopefully, she will find her tribe. These experiences are teaching her what she DOESN'T want. Try to show her THAT, so that she doesn't pick these "familiar" people again.
 

smitcompton

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Hi,

Yes, they are teenagers, and as such they are usually insecure and feeling their way to adulthood. I would hope that this young man would learn that good relationships are not just exclusive togetherness, which teens seem to believe. I would first have your daughter address this, and if that doesn't work, it might be good if you try to explain it to him. By the way, girls are just as bad. Its part of a mentality that just arises by the expectations of them all.

I hope he can learn. Your daughter needs someone who is more secure. Which , by the way, may be hard to find at this age.


Annette
 

OoohShiny

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Hi autumn :)

(apologies - I didn't even say hi before I set off on my rant! :oops: :lol: )

My experience was difficult at the time (for me and my mother) and I still sometimes (usually... :???: ) have difficulty dealing with confrontation today, but I am in a good place now and am at least aware of the issue and can take steps to try to change my seemingly now-engrained behaviour. :)


Your daughter sounds like a sensible girl and you obviously have a good relationship with each other, so I think you are both in a strong position :)

It might be the case that the boy in question was fine with the way things were because there was not much opportunity for her to go out and about, and he was probably busy mentally and physically with his studies so didn't have time or energy to devote too much to worrying, but now he is graduated and has spare time (assuming he's not working) his mind might be wandering on to paranoia-based theoretical (and nonsense) situations that will never actually occur, hence the sudden stressing.

What he (and all men/women in a similar position) need to realise is that attempting to keep someone close all the time inevitably leads them to go further away, be it immediately or at a point in the future when they (hopefully) have a moment of clarity and decide to escape a situation. As the saying goes, 'if you love somebody, let them go' (or whatever that saying is :lol:) - they should want to come back, not be glad of the escape!


I hope your chat tonight goes well, if you've not discussed domestic abuse (physical and mental) with her then perhaps you should touch on it to make sure she is aware of it. There is plenty online about it so she can always go and read up on issues and tactics for dealing with them if required, but ultimately, if he does not change his position, end things early and quickly and it is a lot less messy :)

Good luck and report back if you want/need to! :))



ETA: +10000000 to everything Jambalaya has said! :)
 

Jambalaya

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About having words with him - first her, then the mother - and about trying to understand him (maybe he has too much time after graduation) you know, I have learned that negative people don't deserve analysis and reasonable talkings-to. He is a negative person in her life. He has turned an entire group of people against her. His needs are more important to him than her right to have a full, happy life controlled only by her.

Don't do him the courtesy of analyzing him. Just dump him. I have seen the outcomes of relationships with negative men played out over decades. They never change, never get better. If he isn't already a kind, wise, upstanding person, he isn't going to become one now.

Just my two cents.
 

Jambalaya

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Thanks, Oooh Shiney!
 

iluvshinythings

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I'm so sorry your daughter is going through this. I have a very similar story to OoohShiny and she gave some very good advice.

I too stopped seeing my friends and family because my partner was jealous. There were always consequences to leaving the house and it didn't seem worth it eventually. In the end my partner also found that I was boring and found someone else - after he accused me of having an affair. It's been over five years since I left the relationship and I'm still trying to get back to me.

I can't totally explain why all the friends agree with his behavior, but I do know that abusers typically lie and invent stories so that they look okay. Who knows what he's telling them about your daughter so he can still look like a good guy? Just my two cents and no excuse for what her friends are doing. She'd be so much better off with different friends.

I think our society is messed up by giving jealousy a pardon. We sometimes act like it's okay to demand that our partner modify their behavior when their behavior makes us "jealous." I think that's just plain wrong and places the blame on the victim. I don't even think that jealousy is the issue - I think some people are controlling @ss holes but those controlling @ss holes sugar coat it and say they are "insecure" or "jealous" knowing that it makes their behavior palatable.

I know many people tried to talk to me about how destructive my relationship was and I didn't listen. I hope your daughter is smarter than I am and will dump this jerk and the stupid friends. If your daughter doesn't want to end the relationship after you've talked to her, I think it would benefit her talk to a counselor or therapist. That's what it took for me to finally grasp what was happening in my life and for me to realize that I wanted to be a partner - not a pet, not a child and not slave.
 

D_

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OoohShiny|1443109150|3931279 said:
"Should I have gone and sat opposite them and got his aggression focused on me so perhaps he might have started a fight and I could have got him arrested?", "Should I have slipped her my (female) friend's number to call on the pretext of a school reunion, rather than a random bloke's number which the aggressor might have physically 'punished' her for having in her possession?", "Should I have reported him to the police?"...

No. You should not.
You have all the good intention but you didn't have enough context or full knowledge of what was going on.
You did as far as you could.
This could have easily happened:
BF: Who was that?
GF: No one, just a stranger
BF: Well what did he/she say to you?
GF: Nothing, really
BF was unconvinced and you never know what could happen once they are out of your view.
Suddenly the hero becomes part of the problem.
Imagine if you had gone further than that.
I personally think it's rude for "outsiders" to meddle in other people's affairs, but perhaps that's just me.

Autumngems has the right to chat with her daughter because she is her daughter and she has enough context to have that chat (albeit from 1 side only - her daughter) and assuming she's still not a full adult yet? Even that, as many has pointed here, the daughter will learn, it is an experience in discovering what she wants, where she fits in etc. I'd be wary about involving the guy's parents though as it means value judgment could be imparted on them and I don't think any parents will appreciate other parents telling them the result (albeit indirectly) of their parenting, especially if it is negative.
 

Jambalaya

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Atumngems, could you clarify if you daughter is a junior at high school or a junior at college? You said she was at school, and we often refer to college as school, and you mentioned her texting you in the evening so it sounded like she was living away. I was assuming she was at college. It's just that the age group she's in can affect our advice. Thanks!

P.S. I think iluvshinythings is right when she says who knows what the boy is saying, and also that some people are just controlling a$$holes and cover it up by claiming reasons for their behavior like insecurity. Reasons that make you think you can work with them. I think Luv's point that it's taking years to get back to herself is also worth noting. People can really damage you if you let them, and really, it's one of our duties in life to be our own guards and protectors.

I'm a firm believer in the saying that you can't make a silk purse out of a sow's ear. Past behavior predicts future behavior more often than not, unless the person recognizes that they have a problem and makes a conscious effort to change. That doesn't happen very often. This guy has made your daughter seriously miserable. Does she need any further reason to get rid of him? But I'm someone who doesn't tolerate a lot of cr*p from people - I'm good at being on my own and would rather be so than have bad friendships and relationships. Perhaps this is a good time to introduce your daughter to the idea of self-reliance, which will serve her well if she can develop it. No one needs friends like that!
 

D_

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I think we also need to remember we are talking about teenagers here and the need for acceptance etc. can be strong.
So any advice or conversation needs to be measured and tread carefully, while being really mindful of her need for acceptance and other needs. It's not as simple as "don't take crap from anyone, you need to be able to stand on your own, select the correct group of friends, value yourself etc." She needs to be able to see it for herself. So, prompt questions etc. instead of starting to shower her with advice.

It can actually be a long difficult process, with her repeating the same mistakes along the way and can go horribly wrong if we think/hope it is something that can be solved quickly and easily.
All the best, AG.
 

momhappy

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You mentioned that the first BF was a stalker and the second one sounds a bit controlling - is it possible that maybe your daughter is having difficulty choosing the right boys for her? Some people fall into patterns of picking the same "types" of mates and those types are not necessarily good for them. I have a friend who has been married twice. The two wives were so similar, I sometimes get their names mixed up! They both had very similar issues and I wasn't surprised when they divorced. Apparently, he had a certain type of woman that he was attracted to, but the relationships were never successful.
I'm sorry that you're going through this with your teen. I hope that you can get the issues resolved because I know that it can't be easy to deal with.
 

D_

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momhappy|1443132578|3931432 said:
Some people fall into patterns of picking the same "types" of mates and those types are not necessarily good for them.

2 is hardly enough data to draw a conclusion from, but I think you may be on to something here, momhappy.
If this is true about her, left unchecked it can extend into her adulthood.
I also think the solution goes beyond just dumping him.
See, if we don't address the root cause of the problem the pattern just repeats all over again.
All the more reason to have the right conversation going.
 

momhappy

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^Yes, I completely agree that 2 is not enough to form conclusions, but just thought it might be worth mentioning. The teen years might be a good time to encourage healthy relationships and that includes choosing the right partners.
 

azstonie

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There is a difference btw being in a relationship and being held hostage.

There are times to butt out of your adult child's life and then there are the very rare times TO GET RIGHT TO IT.

I think this is one of those rare times, or get her into therapy. You don't want to see her accepting a lifetime of abusive relationships personally or at work.
 

Jambalaya

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I agree with momhappy and azstonie. OK, two swallows don't make a summer, but there have been a couple of women in my life who were seriously bad pickers as girls and the misery has extended to their adult lives. Alternatively, maybe it's not so much that she's developing into a bad picker, but that she has not yet had the opportunity to enjoy a relationship with a really great boy. If she is a junior at high school, then these are desperately tender and formative years, and you don't want "this" to become the template. Perhaps you could draw her a picture of what a good relationship looks like and how it feels. And that it doesn't involve being reduced to floods of tears and having an entire group of friends turn against you for nothing!

I agree with asztonie that there are times to get right in there. Young people are often in terrible need of guidance. I wish I had been told more truths about the way the world works when I was young. No one told me anything about reality, and all my hard-earned knowledge has been through mistakes. I know you can't prevent them from making mistakes but I do think that interventions can avoid some major pitfalls in the tender lives. Good luck, Atumngems. It must be very hard to see your child so upset. As my auntie used to say about children, "When they're little, they make your arms ache. When they're big, they make your heart ache."
 

iLander

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If her friends are being mean, get her OFF facebook.

Tell her to close down her account completely. She can tell her friends that her mom is mad at her for bad grades and she's grounded off facebook for a month (or whatever time you two agree to).

I had to play the "Heavy" for my DD many times during high school. Fine with me, that's what I'm here for, I was her cover for lots of things she didn't want to do. :) I was "super strict" and "didn't allow" ;-) her to go to various drinking parties, a couple of raves, and who knows what else. Her friends must have thought I was a real b!tch. :bigsmile:

If she wants to creep on Facebook, she will need another (real) friend's account info to log in. Otherwise she will reactivate her account and everyone will know she is on. DD did this a few times, because she was curious, and she was grateful for the breaks from all the drama.

I asked DD about your DD's situation, and she said that your DD needs to dump these so called friends. But she also pointed out that if your DD keeps going for these guys, then she (your DD) probably wants to be dominated by guys. For my two cents, if she likes dominant, take-charge guys, they probably make her feel safer and she has insecurity issues.

I suggest that you get her involved in something non-school, with a whole new crop of people, preferably people that are beyond high school age. Maybe volunteering at a hospital, or at an animal shelter, or whatever. This is remind her that high school is a pit stop and life is much bigger than that. Keeps that crap in perspective. How do they know their is something beyond high school if that is all they see?

And no, don't call the boyfriend or the boyfriend's family.
 

Jambalaya

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God, I think Facebook is SO destructive for high-schoolers. I am so glad it didn't exist when I was young. There were some real pills in my class - intelligent ones with the combination of sharp tongues and unkind characters. There weren't many but it only takes one or two bad apples. Fortunately, my schooling was before any kind of technology, and before computers, so there weren't all these multiple ways for certain types of people to express themselves. I think Facebook's lower age limit should be 18, not 13.
 

lambskin

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Have you met his parents? What are they like? Do you like 'his' friends better than her other friends? We have witnessed terrible things with bad boyfriends and bad friend groups with other families. We keep a tight eye on our girls but they are only 12 and 13 and will be in high school soon. We are going to make them accountable for keeping us apprised as to what they do after school and on the weekend. We are their parents not their friends.
 

azstonie

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I thought your DD was a junior in college, but so much the better that she gets to learn and practice healthy, reciprocal relationships now versus boundary-busters, baiters/tweakers, and full on hostage takers.

Normally, I don't go for helicopter parents (taught high school a good # of years) but in this case, she's your underage DD and the next time junior D*head shows up to take her out, sit him down and have a little chat: Son, *you* don't tell NAME who she can spend time with, be friends with, talk to, etc. If you think her father and I will stand by while you beat her down, think again. (Hard stare here)

In interviews of famous psychopaths, we find they look for their targets at this age from families who either aren't or won't pay attention and act, or who don't care. You do; make sure he knows that.

Try this with your DD to highlight what junior D*head is doing:
Would you tell Rancid Jr where he can work?
Would you tell Rancid Jr what he can/cannot wear?
Would you tell Rancid Jr who he can be friends with?

Then don't allow ANYONE to do that to you. You aren't anyone's property.
 

decisively_unsure

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autumngems|1443106401|3931265 said:
I swear I will be bald by the time she graduates in 2017.

She met the perfect boy and they have been dating for three months he is sweet, smart and very loving.
Last night she texted me, Mom, can I have friends? I said of course why?

Apparently the boyfriend does not want her to have friends that are boys and is very adamant about it. Having been in this type of situation with her first boyfriend she wanted to make sure he understood she is going to have other firends, boys and girls and that he needs to trust her.
She met this boy through some of her friends (boys and girls), now they are turning their backs on her because she isn't going along with the no friends that are boys mentality and they say she is hurting the current boyfriend.

I told her all you can do is explain that you WILL have friends of both sexes, you are my boyfriend, you need to trust me. She's really hurt that her friends have turned on her though.

Stressing me out because i get the aftermath: moody crying teen

Look on the bright side, it's all good experience for your daughter, has been very revealing about her friendships & in the long run will make her a tougher & more rounded girl.

This 'perfect' boy needs to become a MAN and not allow his own insecurities inform decisions that impact your daughter's friendships.

It also shows that this group of friends aren't real friends, or it'd be the other way around i.e. "who does that chump think he is, we're friends & that's that."
 

House Cat

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iLander|1443141564|3931489 said:
If her friends are being mean, get her OFF facebook.


I suggest that you get her involved in something non-school, with a whole new crop of people, preferably people that are beyond high school age. Maybe volunteering at a hospital, or at an animal shelter, or whatever. This is remind her that high school is a pit stop and life is much bigger than that. Keeps that crap in perspective. How do they know their is something beyond high school if that is all they see?

And no, don't call the boyfriend or the boyfriend's family.

Love this!
 

OoohShiny

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Hey autumn,

Are you able to / do you want to update any further on this?

I am hoping for a happy ending! :))
 

LLJsmom

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iLander|1443141564|3931489 said:
If her friends are being mean, get her OFF facebook.

Tell her to close down her account completely. She can tell her friends that her mom is mad at her for bad grades and she's grounded off facebook for a month (or whatever time you two agree to).

I had to play the "Heavy" for my DD many times during high school. Fine with me, that's what I'm here for, I was her cover for lots of things she didn't want to do. :) I was "super strict" and "didn't allow" ;-) her to go to various drinking parties, a couple of raves, and who knows what else. Her friends must have thought I was a real b!tch. :bigsmile:

If she wants to creep on Facebook, she will need another (real) friend's account info to log in. Otherwise she will reactivate her account and everyone will know she is on. DD did this a few times, because she was curious, and she was grateful for the breaks from all the drama.

I asked DD about your DD's situation, and she said that your DD needs to dump these so called friends. But she also pointed out that if your DD keeps going for these guys, then she (your DD) probably wants to be dominated by guys. For my two cents, if she likes dominant, take-charge guys, they probably make her feel safer and she has insecurity issues.

I suggest that you get her involved in something non-school, with a whole new crop of people, preferably people that are beyond high school age. Maybe volunteering at a hospital, or at an animal shelter, or whatever. This is remind her that high school is a pit stop and life is much bigger than that. Keeps that crap in perspective. How do they know their is something beyond high school if that is all they see?

And no, don't call the boyfriend or the boyfriend's family.

+10!! All of it, esp getting her involved with new activities and new friends.
 
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