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How can I re-teach my 15 year old about being selfless?

I have a 15 year old who is honor role, envolved in extra school activitys like the spirit team. She is very nice to her teachers and others outside of our home. once she enters our home or comes anywhere around us, she wants nothing to do with us, and is very rude, she expects everything to be handed to her without questions, because she does not get in trouble. We do not have a lot of money so we do have to say no a lot. She isnt the only teen in our home, and she is very mean and rude to the other 2. I recently had a seizure while I was at a stop sign and she was in the car with me, she told me 2 weeks later that she didnt relize how much she loved me untill that day. I have had surgury since then ,and also found out I have cancer. She hasnt changed towereds me at all. She is very jelous of the other 2, because I do treat them different, they dont treat me like I grew 2 heads, and they talk to me,and do as I ask then

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Asked by vntbarton at 4:18 PM on Oct. 28, 2010 in Teens (13-17)

Level 2 (7 Credits)
Answers (10)
  • Wow! There's a lot going on in your lives. First of all, she sounds like a lot of teens. Unfortunate, but true. They are pretty self-absorbed at that age. Sometimes volunteering at a homeless shelter for women & children can have an effect on them. But I would suggest counseling for her to deal w/ your illness. (For the other kids too) The fact that she's not treating you any different means she's probably in denial about your illness. Hospice offeres free counseling. You dont have to be using their service or even be dying to get help from their qualified counselors. I wish you all the luck in getting thru your treatments & getting healthy again. (*Hugs) :)

    Answer by mrsmom110 at 4:24 PM on Oct. 28, 2010

  • I personally do not think being selfless is something that can be taught.

    Being selfless stems from having empathy/sympathy/understanding.. Those things can't really be taught. People develop those things through live experiences, and growing from, learning from and understanding those life experiences. Some people develop those things really young, some not until they are older, some never at all. It all depends on the individual.

    Answer by pixie_trix at 4:25 PM on Oct. 28, 2010

  • your daughter is going through so much ever one wants her to be this good person all the time and when she comes home she can be her self, yes she is rude but deep down she is scared that you will leave her,she all mix up inside her way in showing she loves you is by meaning mean,and so far it has worked, now it is time to talk i mean really talk,you need to tell her i how much she means to you and this family ,it's okay for you as a mom to ask for help and tell her you will need her help ,you have cancer now and you can beat this together .as family you all have talk about your fears and don't leave any thing out ,bear your soul,will happen over night but in time it will god bless

    Answer by dutchcanadain at 4:29 PM on Oct. 28, 2010

  • Find a soup kitchen or other service that both of you can work in as long as you can handle it. Don't give her the option of not doing it. Tell her she has to do it once or twice a week for however many weeks --say, 4 weeks. It wont kill her to give up an hour or so of her time to do something for others. It's getting close to Christmas. Maybe (sorry, going by what I would do and am just assuming you celebrate it) you could announce that as a family project you are using part of the money that you would have spent on each child's gifts to buy something for someone less fortunate. Have her involved in choosing the gifts if not family / child. At a church we used to attend they had a tree in the foyer with ornaments hanging from it. The ornaments held the name and age of children from a group home, and their wish list. Good luck, and I pray you heal quickly.

    Answer by duckigrrl at 4:31 PM on Oct. 28, 2010

  • have her volunteer at the hosptial and see sick people and how easy it is to lose someone. have her help in a food bank or homeless shelter this holiday season to see people who are truely without. maybe she just needs to experience what its like for other people.

    Answer by Tfor2 at 4:37 PM on Oct. 28, 2010

  • Some more info...Im not dying..the cancer is being treated very effectivily....but the thing is she has always been this way...but it has gotten worse.

    Comment by vntbarton (original poster) at 4:39 PM on Oct. 28, 2010

  • Well if you figure it out let me know. Personally I would dump her ars in a soup kitchen and let her week there for Thanksgiving. She needs to learn limits. She needs to understand what is acceptable. When my daughter talks to me mean I ask her 'do you mean to be so mean?".. Sometimes they don't even realize it. Good luck with all that you have going on. Hugs to you.

    Answer by mmmegan38 at 6:06 PM on Oct. 28, 2010

  • Sounds like you got a plate full, eh? But IMO, the time for "teaching" is over by age 15 - it's time now for "learning", and that is her job. Give her space to be indifferent and distant. Show her unconditional love, even when you have to say no. Clearly, your teaching job was not lost on the other kids, and thus you can rest in the knowledge that you taught her all you could. The application of your teaching will come through at different times - and may never - but it's NOT because you did not teach her - it will have been her unwillingness to learn. Try a heart to heart. I have a daughter who tends toward this - same age - and I just let her know that I DO care, and when things got VERY tough for her, she came around. She's still quiet and private, and I respect her for that, but I know I've done my job. The rest is up to her. Good luck to you in this trying time!

    Answer by mommyx9 at 6:20 PM on Oct. 28, 2010

  • Take everything away from her and DEMAND respect. She can earn what she does have back by being respectful to everyone in the family.

    Answer by tyfry7496 at 10:46 PM on Oct. 28, 2010

  • Have you told her why you treat the other two differently from her? She needs to know that just because she doesn't get in trouble doesn't mean she can get away with being rude and hurtful with her family.

    Answer by _Tam_ at 9:46 AM on Oct. 29, 2010

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