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Teen girl defending convicted felons.

My daughter is 16 and we've always been super close so she tells me everything that is going on in her life. We used to never fight badly but I've found a sticking point and we are butting heads daily.

Started out over the summer, a neighbor guy (19) who had been living away from home for 2 year. Without going into too much detail he was on probation for a felony for breaking and entering trying to fuel his then drug habit. My daughter quickly let their old friendship fall back into place, my daughter has the goal in life to become be in a job where she can't ever have a criminal record. I sat her down discussed being guilty by association if this guy were to do something wrong again. The kid only lasted 2 months before being sent back to jail for violating his probation.

Daughter and I got into a heated argument because I made a comment about him being a criminal she said I was being judgmental and didn't have a right to be. I told her NO a judge has deemed him a CRIMINAL!

So then a couple weeks ago she mentions that she was out with her friends and another friend let it slip that one of them was missing because he got a new mugshot. This time the guy is 18 and on probation for drugs (I looked it up after my daughter told me about it) and got in trouble again for careless driving. So daughter was again upset that her friend was back in jail and told me.

I started to try to again discuss with her the friends she's clinging to and how she can get in trouble by just being friends with them. That a cop will quickly charge her too if she were out with them and they got caught with drugs or stolen property. I told her it would ruin her entire life to have charges like that following her around.

She went to bed last night not speaking to me at all because we got in a huge fight over this , she tried to throw it in my face that I did bad stuff as a teen but I was just lucky enough to not get caught. That's not quite how it was, I admitted to doing drugs as a teen, drinking when I shouldn't of etc... but I wasn't carrying drugs around it was a social thing, I wasn't driving drug or carelessly ever. I pushed the limits yes, and yes I hung around a lot of guys I shouldn't have but that is because my mom had her head in the sand about life with a teenager. She screamed at me how she could be out doing drugs or drinking that it's been offered to her but she knows better then to do it. I told her I was proud of her for those choices but she still needed to make better choices in her friends and not cling to guys that are on probation and not learning from their mistakes.

It's one thing to make a mistake as a late teenager get yourself in trouble and learn from it but both of these guys she's defending to the hilt haven't learned one bit which is obvious from their rearrests. I just want her to not fall victim to the guilty by association and make some better choices then to think these guys are okay to hang out with.

Hell the cops had to come to MY HOUSE and search for the first one because when he violated his probation because my daughter was a known friend of his and we lived close. That should tell her something right there!!

Any advice on how to handle this without driving a larger wedge between us.

Answer Question
 
AllgirlshereFL

Asked by AllgirlshereFL at 9:25 AM on Sep. 23, 2012 in Teens (13-17)

Level 1 (3 Credits)
Answers (6)
  • The only thing you can do is keep close tabs on her until she comes to her senses. Don't walk around with blinders on either. She may very well not be doing those things, but she also could be. You get most defensive of a person who you relate to. It could be teen drama loyalty or it could be her defending her behaviors. Keep her busy with activities
    adnilm

    Answer by adnilm at 9:38 AM on Sep. 23, 2012

  • It's nearly impossible to tell a teenager what they should and shouldn't do--parents never understand what a teenager is feeling (according to the teen). I'm sure it's no fun, and I have no idea how I'll react when my 2 year old turns 16, but I say, don't lose that good thing you two have between you--it's awesome that she talks to you about these things, don't push her away. Let her know that she's a good kid and that you trust her but that you're simply warning her. Don't dictate who her friends are, just simply warn her, and continue your open communication, that's so important.
    Ludvik_Smith

    Answer by Ludvik_Smith at 9:45 AM on Sep. 23, 2012

  • Thank you for the input so far. Let me add that she is homeschooled, and only has a couple nights a week (Fri,Sat) that she is out of the house without a parent. She is very active in several good activities and attends meetings and such 4 days a week.

    She woke up just now and still not speaking to me after our blow up last night over this subject. I just don't want her to make mistakes that will ruin her life over teenage blindness.

    Not to mention she's very pot calling the kettle black right this moment regarding this subject just last month she was downing one of her xboyfriends when she found out he was going out with a girl on probation. She had nothing nice to say about the girl or the boy dating her. However now she's all over defending this guy criminals that she calls her friends (one is an old friend who she knew before his problems so I understand that one more but the other she just met this summer).
    AllgirlshereFL

    Comment by AllgirlshereFL (original poster) at 10:01 AM on Sep. 23, 2012

  • As a mother it's impossible to accept that we cannot save our children from everything, but we should at least try a little.
    At some point they turn from being our little babies under our control to psuedo-adults who have to begin taking responsibility for their own actions.
    Teens are like fish, or soap--the tighter you squeeze the more likely they are to slip out of your hands :)
    Ludvik_Smith

    Answer by Ludvik_Smith at 10:09 AM on Sep. 23, 2012

  • She feels judged because you are judging her friends, and she perceives this as a judgment of her character and choices.

    She wants to be friends with these people and she wants you to be proud of who she is. It sounds like she might feel that you are asking her to choose between her friends and you.

    A lot of young adults don't see doing drugs as a big deal; she might think it's unfair for a person she knows to be a good friend to get a criminal record for having some weed, etc. The idea that she could get a bad mark on her record for being around friends who have drugs on them might be beyond her at this point.

    Mousuke

    Answer by Mousuke at 12:05 PM on Sep. 23, 2012

  • You aren't getting anywhere by fighting and stating over and over how bad he is. The one thing that I have learned is that give an idiot enough rope and he will hang himself. The important thing is to stay calm. Shouting with her is not going to get you anywhere. Stand your ground and set some rules. The "boy" doesn't come into your house. He can see her outside of the house (i. e. the front porch). Keep stating why drugs are bad. You don't have to preach, you just state your opinion when the issue comes up.
    I hate this as much as you do. I can only imagine the hell you are going through. But, one thing I know for sure is that if you keep calm, she will freak out and wonder what has gotten into you. Stay calm. don't give in to her arguing. She will learn respect for herself and will learn what is truly right for her.
    blondie805

    Answer by blondie805 at 11:09 AM on Oct. 1, 2012

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