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Advice Needed: Help, my 13 yr. old daughter wants to go live with her dad?

Posted by on Apr. 29, 2013 at 11:04 PM
  • 6 Replies

Type your question for the moms of our Teens group to answer!My 13 year old daughter just told me she wants to go live with her dad and stepmom because she doesn't think we're fair parents, how do I handle this?We try and be fair, yes, she does get punished for serious things, like hitting her sister and being rude. Her attitude lately is that she thinks no one likes her and she's bad. She has a serious ADHD problem and other emotional issues. When we try and talk to her about responsibilities, she gets all mad and says we're not fair. I have spent so much time and energy into trying to help her and get her on the right track, sometimes it's exhausting, but I do the best I can.  We also have 2 other children that we try to be fair to. She always complains we're picking favorites. The real problem is, she doesn't want to be  involved and they do. then when we have a good time, she gets even more mad or jealous.  I love her so much, I don't want her to leave, but I can't force her to stay, her dad and step mom have already discussed this with her, befor I knew and they are all for it. What can I do? Do I let her go? Do I just say No, or do we give it a try. My husband says if she leaves, she has to give it a year before she comes back. I'm so confused. please, any advice will be so grateful.

by on Apr. 29, 2013 at 11:04 PM
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by on Apr. 30, 2013 at 1:00 AM
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Is she on meds for the ADHD? Look, I think if you've done everything you can to be fair with her, and her behavior is negatively affecting the other children in the household, let her go. But there must be an understanding with her father and stepmother that rules be put in place and followed. I wonder if she thinks moving in with them will be a vacation from responsibilities and rules. And yes, give it a year for sure. She can't think she can bounce back and forth as her heart desires.
by Grumpy on Apr. 30, 2013 at 1:59 AM
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 First of all, what do you mean you can't make her stay?  Typically with divorced parents there is a custody order in place giving one person physical custody.  This means the child stays with that parent.  At 13 years old, the "life isn't fair" opinion just doesn't hold water.  If you have physical custody of the child, there needs to be a court hearing to determine that there has been a significant change of circumstance in order to warrant a change of custody.

Secondly, she is severely ADHD?  So am I.  Guess what?  I'm not on meds for it either.  My friends son is severely ADHD and he no longer brings his meds to my house.  The big thing there?  STRUCTURE and SCHEDULE.  Specific bedtimes, wake up times, meal times, homework times, etc. etc. It needs to be pretty structured and scheduled for the same time each day.  This way the ADHD can calm down.  This does not mean take her off any medications she is currently on, but start building structure in your home.

I have recently dealt with a stubborn teen. I am his stepmom.  He wanted to leave and not live here anymore, but when you asked him where he wanted to go he simply stated somewhere warm like the carribean.  So with no real solution we were at a loss with a teen who felt we were unfair, mean, picked favorites, and didn't love him near as much as we loved the others.  Here is what finally worked for us.

Write down on a paper, leaving four or five lines between each one, some things you want from your daughter. Such as, doing homework, hanging out with the family (be specific on this one, like an hour a day), smiling face, etc.  While you are doing all of this, have your daughter write down (with the lines in betwen blank) what she finds "unfair".  Now switch.  In the lines left blank, each of you list your "price" for it.  What you want in exchange.  See if that doesn't help

by Barbara on Apr. 30, 2013 at 12:28 PM


by on Apr. 30, 2013 at 7:03 PM

 maybe try joint custody

by on Apr. 30, 2013 at 7:05 PM
I went to live with my dad at 13 for various reasons.
Love my mom dearly but it just wasnt working for me.
Best decision I ever made
by Member on Apr. 30, 2013 at 7:25 PM
1 mom liked this

Sorry that you have to go through this, but honestly, at 13 she should have a say in where she lives.  How far does her father live from you?  I would go to court to get the custody arrangement modified for a year.  I would give physical custody to her father for a year, to be reevaluated then. I would make sure that I had visitation on a regular basis. Holidays and school breaks should be addressed as well.  The other subject that would come up would be child support.  He wouldn't have to pay it for the time she lives with him and I am sure you would be expected to pay him instead.  If I were in your shoes, I would sit down with her as well as your ex and his wife and talk about it.  Come to agreement and let her go.....

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