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Can anyone help with my 13 year old daughter?

I cannot get her to talk to me about anything anymore. I KNOW there is something going on or that she is hiding from me. I have worked in the prison system for going on 9 years now, so I am in tune with games played and know all the signs of people hiding things. I love her very much and don't want to see her get into any trouble or involved in anything she is not ready for. I appreciate any advice someone may have. Thanks.

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Asked by rcham71 at 12:08 PM on Oct. 1, 2009 in Teens (13-17)

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Answers (12)
  • You might try reading the book How to Talk so Kids Will Listen. Good Luck.

    Answer by Gailll at 12:16 PM on Oct. 1, 2009

  • This is such a hard age! I would try talking to her again, in a non confrontational way, maybe when you're doing something together that she likes to do. Just tell her that you love her, and you know that there's something going on. Tell her that you really hope that she knows that she can talk to you about anything that's going on, no judgments or repercussions, and that if she doesn't feel comfortable talking to you, then you're more than willing to make her an appointment to talk about it with someone else. (You can maybe give her a special pass or something that she can use for "these talks" where she gets amnesty with the topic, or something.)

    Give her some time to think about this, and if that doesn't work, then let her know that you respect her and trust her, and you respect her privacy, but that it's part of your job as a mother to keep her safe, even if sometimes it's from herself.


    Answer by sailorwifenmom at 12:18 PM on Oct. 1, 2009

  • cont

    Let her know that you still are convinced that there's something going on, and that whatever the problem is, you're afraid that it's not good for her, so if she isn't willing to talk to you (or some other trusted - pref. by you both - adult), then you're going to have to start investigating on your own. Because you will respect her privacy and her space, until you think that it's a threat to her, in which case, all bets are off.

    But, I would ONLY go that route as a last resort. Also, I STRONGLY recommend the book "Roller Coaster Years". It's about raising pre teens and teens. I don't agree with all of it, but there's a TON of stuff in there that's really good, and it's kept me from killing my 2 teens so far, and it's helped keep our lines of communication open.

    GL - this age is probably one of the hardest for girls - my dd is 15, it does get easier again :-)

    Answer by sailorwifenmom at 12:22 PM on Oct. 1, 2009

  • My 14 year old tells me EVERYTHING! Most of her friends tell their parents nothing. A couple of the moms have called me when they have had concerns about their child. Why don’t you call one of your daughter’s friend’s mothers? If your daughter has a cell phone or Facebook, check them for clues.

    Good luck!


    Answer by rkoloms at 1:25 PM on Oct. 1, 2009

  • Good advice on here. I just wanted to add that despite our best efforts sometimes they JUST dont want to tell MOM! There was a period in my young life (about you d's age) that I preferred to talk to my aunt (mom's sis) instead of my mom. I am not even sure why. I was close w/my mom and respected aunt didn't even have any kids. I just remember thinking she would be objective and supportive where my mom always tried to solve things for me I guess. Anyway, just a thought that if there is anyone else that you (and she) trusts it might help. Good luck!

    Answer by momrocks1000 at 2:46 PM on Oct. 1, 2009

  • Being a mom of 5 grown daughters, take it from me,when I tell you,it will get better,but,it is something about that age group 13-16,this is the hardest time in a girls life,between,boys,periods,acne,new schools,change of friends,there is so much going on at this age. All girls are different,some like to talk,and some like to stay to themselves. I believe you should give them space,for my daughters, I brought them journals,writing is good for the soul. I don''t agree with searching through her room or phones,unless you suspect drugs or bad behavior,too many times, parents ruin their relationship with their kids,because they don't trust them.Have a girls day out with your DD,and talk to her,and give her a nice journal,with a nice loving note in it from you, in the note, tell her you love her, tell her she is beautiful,most of all,tell her you trust her.GOOD LUCK.


    Answer by lady-t3984 at 9:42 PM on Oct. 1, 2009

  • Alot of teens are really quiet and just want to keep to themselves. My SIL never leaves her room and wont talk to any of us. But she is a straight A student and never gets herself into any trouble. Maybe its just the age?

    Answer by Anonymous at 10:08 PM on Oct. 1, 2009

  • I have always spied on my SD for fear of her harming herself in some way. A lot of people disagree with this, and in theory I do too, but like you, I knew something was up with her and needed to know what.
    She is 16 now and on Birth Control. If I hadn't spied on her, she very likely could be 16 and pregnant like I was.

    Answer by Anonymous at 11:00 PM on Oct. 1, 2009

  • I suggested the snooping only as a last resort. When my dd was in 6th grade she had a friend that, come to find out, was cutting herself and talking online with this guy she met in a chat room, who claimed to be in hs and also a cutter.

    My dd and their other friends were talking to her about it, telling her it was stupid, tried to confront her about it (she denied it - she told them that she "used to do it, but had stopped"). Finally, my dd came to me about it. Another mom (who knew her better) and I tried to talk to the mom about it. Mom went into denial, but asked her dd anyway. She denied it.

    The other mom convinced her to do some snooping and find out for herself. She did, and she found proof on the computer about them talking - about cutting and other stuff. She made her get undressed in front of her and found the marks.

    Do it only as a LAST emergency resort, but sometimes you have to for your kid's safety.

    Answer by sailorwifenmom at 1:15 AM on Oct. 2, 2009

  • We ended up having to look on my DDs AIM account BECAUSE there was a huge change in her behavior after she started communicating with new people~ a BF and some new kids in HS. Turns out that this BF was trying to change my DD and her views on many things for the worse, and another boy was sending her adult rated links online. SO~do it only if you need to, but I agree with letting her know that if she won't talk about it you MAY have to assume the worst~she won't like that at all~but do tell her that you will just listen and not judge, unless she could be hurt and you feel the need to protect her. That is your job as a parent. My DD flipped when she knew we knew, but now she is more mature after much talking~realizes why we were concerned and not that we just want her to be miserable by establishing boundaries. They do not have the means to handle many situations at that age, but think they really do!

    Answer by Anonymous at 9:28 AM on Oct. 2, 2009

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