Thursday, August 27, 2009

Because I Wanted It....

There has been a continuous theme to my blogs lately - it has been the challenges I am facing with my thirteen year old... I just don't get it.... Have I been too lenient? Not consistent enough? Have I spoiled her too much? Do I not spend enough time and attention on her? Is it her age? Her hormones? My hormones? Do I need to be more hard nosed?

This morning - I was going through my DVD library - getting rid of things we no longer want or need. There was a movie 3 pack with: Something about Mary, Shallow Hal, and The Girl Next Door all three (3) movies are "R" rated movies - it was a white elephant gift I received last year at a Christmas party we attended - The movies were never watched... I noticed that when I opened the case - the movies were missing.... My daughter saw the movies on the shelf last week and asked if she could watch them... I said no because they were "R" rated.... Unknown to me at the time - when my back was turned she took the movies and left the case in the shelf...

This summer's theme has been - "Can I eat my lunch and dinner upstairs in the game room so I can watch TV? Hurry up - I have a show on and I don't want to miss it... Please don't make me go to bed at midnight - there's a movie I want to watch... I just want to watch my show.... No, I don't want to have family game night - I have a TV show I really really want to watch.. No, I don't want to go swim, play outside, or anything else because I have a TV show I want to watch.. I'm bored there's nothing on TV to watch.." Many times, I have caught my kid watching her TV very late at night.... "But I can't sleep...." she whines.. I still require the TV off - last night after I caught her at 1:00 am with the TV on and told her to turn it off, I went to go kiss the youngest before I went to bed - as I was walking in my youngest daughter's room - I see the TV pop on via the mirror in the girls' bathroom that was pointing into my eldest daughter's room (they share a Jack and Jill bathroom)... I walk into my eldest daughter's room and she jumps about 10 feet off the bed and her earplug falls out of her ear... obviously this is NOT the first time she has done this... she has the sneakiness mastered.... I took the earplugs away.. and went to bed..

So back to me going through my DVD library and noticing the movies missing... my kid is still asleep and I walk into her room - push her DVD player button and out pops the movie... She wakes up in the middle of this - I looked at her and said, "Did I not tell you that you could not watch this movie? Her, "Yes" Me, "So why do you have it? Her, "Because I wanted to watch it"

"Because I wanted.... has become the excuse for her of late for all the rules she has broken... I have lost count on the times I have heard this excuse this summer... My patience is at a All Time Low.... Drastic measures must be taken because my "No" has become her "Because I want it and I will do it behind mom and dad's back" This behavior has to stop.... before the "I want it and I will do it behind mom and dad's back" becomes more serious....

So today this is what I have done..... I took out her TV - and advised her she no longer has the privilege of watching TV in her room or in the game room. The only time she can watch TV is when I am watching it and I allow her.... (I am not a TV fan)

To keep her idle hands busy - she is cleaning the entire house -downstairs kitchen, family room, living room - vacuum stairs, the game room, all the bathrooms, and her bedroom. She must write/type a five (5) page essay on Obeying and honoring Her Parents, Making good choices, and what is right and wrong - she must pull Bible verses to support her essay... In addition to the essay - I want her to spend time outside in the backyard swimming or just sitting I don't care - I just want her out of the HOUSE....

So, my friends... my question is this.... "What would you do? Constructive Advise would be happily accepted....


  1. I think first of all a calm, heart to heart talk with her is required but only after both of you have had time to calm down. You need to find out why she felt the need to do something you asked her not to and discuss how both of you feel about it.

    You might find the root reason behind why she is defying you and it may not be what you think. If you don't, it will only close the door to communicating to you in the future and right now during these critical teen years we need all the open communication we can get.

    We don't want our kids to close up and talk to anyone else besides us, we need to be in the know.

    You need to remind her that you love her and no matter what she does that will never change.

    Love and Hugs ~ Kat

  2. You gave her consequences, you are teaching her values, you are guiding her w/a loving hand. I think you are doing great and I'm coping w/similar issues w/my boys. Glad to know I am not alone. God Bless.

  3. I'm not a mom but you are doing great. Just what I'd do in your situation. My boyfriend's daughter is 9 and it's exhausting at times. I don't have the right to really say NO and he's the every other weekend dad so she's learned how to wrap him around her finger. Kids NEED no. People need no, actually. I think everyone tests to see how far they can push, especially children. Heck, I'm not a mom but I was a teenager 20 years ago and I remember doing things like she did. My mom nipped it in the bud.

  4. I think your punishment fits the crime very well. For the future, keeping the lines of communication open is probably the first and best line of defense. And keeping the kids busy so they don't have too much time to get out of line.
    But in spite of having raised 3 kids fairly successfully, I'm no authority. Every child and every parent is different.

  5. I thought your crime fit the punishment. Kids need clear boundries and to know that you will follow through with consequences.
    Of course, I'm not an expert but I think you did a great job.

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  7. As has been written in the other comments've handled that situation very well.
    The few thoughts I'd like to share are:
    1) Is this your daughter's nature with ALL authority? Or, is she only this way with you and your husband...OR...just YOU? Discerning that, I think, would help you in knowing if perhaps she has some underlying issue or is just rebellious at heart.
    2) I once read that when older kids act out in defiance, or sneakiness, or talking back in disrespect, then it's a clear sign that they need MORE time with their parents, not less. I followed that advice and it was VERY beneficial for my family. (I still do follow it as the rest of the kids grow older)This is not to suggest that you "don't spend enough time with your daughter" (Anyone reading your blogs can tell that you DO)...but rather, the idea of "bringing her along-side you" like a little shadow for a while..."staking those tomatoes" when they are beginning to grow and are leaning under the weight....
    3) I know that your daughters are raised in a devoutly Christian perhaps some prayer time together..and some discussions of how, when we rebel against our parents, we are essentially rebelling against God might help...sometimes I think we take for granted (especially we Christian parents) that our kids "GET THAT" fact, in reality, they don't always "GET IT" as much as we think they never hurts to have some family discussions about God's ordained role (and RULE) of a parent in a child's life.
    Sorry that comment was long...wish we could have a mom's night and chat it all out in person...I could sure use advice too!
    God bless you Kelly!
    I love how joyful you remain even when you are frustrated...thanks for being an inspiration to me. (Had to delete my first comment because I'd typed so quickly that my grammatical errors were WAY too many to post! Wouldn't want to invite any radical "SEE? THIS is why people should not homeschool" visitors to your blog, HA HA)

  8. Kelly - Just curious how you were at her age? I was totally her when I was her age!! My parents grounded me, took things away, preached, yelled & I just rebelled. So keep doing all those things you're doing. Even though I hated my parents saying no to me & rebelled when I could, I always knew they were there for me. I could always talk to them - - well, yell at them, as my mom & I did OFTEN. But - - I never drank, did drugs, had sex because deep in my heart I'd hear those words my parents (especially my mom) drilled into me. But if I could sneak out to date a senior when I was a freshman, watch a movie I wasn't supposed to, that's just what I did. I wanted so bad to be independent & make my own decisions. So, I think you just keep doing what you're doing & pray & know it's sinking in somewhere & someday you'll get to see that. In the mean time - - - my mom said raising me & my sister & 2 brothers required tons of Bible reading, prayer & a good dog to talk to & cry with on the back porch!! You are in my prayers!!

  9. I think you are doing the right thing. As I was reading the post I was thinking, "I would so be taking that tv away." So I was glad to read you did.

    It's interesting to note that the concept of "teenager" is a relatively new one. Used to be, you were a child, and then you went to work. Only the lines were often blurred so they came up with child labor rights to protect them and thus teenagers were born.

    It's the sense of entitlement that "kids these days" have that I can't stand. Coupling that with instant gratification and you're looking at a bomb ready to ignite.

    I look at discipline as something akin to sharing the gospel: it's your responsibility to your children to discipline them; but you are not in charge of how they respond. In other words, draw the line, mete out the set consequences when it is crossed, don't take it personally, and love them all the while.

    I often tell my 13yo how much easier it would be for me if I just didn't care. Then I wouldn't have to get on him for being on the computer (his electronic of choice), etc etc. Because what would I care what that did for his brain and body and spirit and social development?

    Of course, he thinks I "don't care" because I don't just let him do what he wants to do. I tell him that's why God put parents in charge of children, because their sense of reality is so self-absorbed and out of whack. He loves that.

    And above all, keep your sense of humor! And whenever she does something positive or responsible -- no matter how small -- comment on it and tell her you appreciate her maturity, etc etc. And good luck:)

  10. I would react the same way -- indeed I have! I think it's important to remember 2 things. Firstly, our children may disobey and it's not always a reflection on our parenting but on their breaking away and seeking independence. Secondly, they are in God's hands & must make their own journey with Him, away from Him, back to Him - however it is to be. But He knows it; and although we must let this happen, we cannot step back from our own values; we can remind them of our values & the rules in the house & the consequences of their actions. And PRAY big time.



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