Okay Fort Friends... Need Help w/Teenager!

Discussion in 'Camping Community Board' started by HappyCamper87, Sep 11, 2008.

  1. HappyCamper87

    HappyCamper87 Mouseketeer

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2008
    Messages:
    399
    What do you do with 15 y/o who is too pretty and too smart but refuses to do any work in school? I mean she litterally failed all three years of middle school. I convinced them to hold her back in 7th but now she will be 16 in a month and she is freshman and shows no sign of even attempting to do any work in school.

    I think I'm a good parent I have told all my kids how important an education is and that if they want to go to college they will have to earn scholarship because I am a paycheck to paycheck person and I will not be able to help them. My son is 19 and has been on his own without any help from me since he was 18. This one is a girl and I am really scared to death for her. She just doesn't do any of the assignments so she fails. It's not because she tries and doesn't get it. She simply does not do anything, last year not even the in-class assignments.

    I'm really upset because she was supposed to go to cheerleading practice (pop warner - she didn't make the High School team) tonight and called me at work to see if she could go to a local HS sporting event tonight. I told her if she called her coach and she said it was okay, she could go.

    I just got a call from the team mom who said that they were specifically told not to go to this event, that they were needed in practice for competition. DH is on his way to pick her up and keep her home, but I am really at my wits end.

    What do you do with your teenagers that just refuse to take any responsibility for themselves? I have tried the grounding route but it hasn't worked so well.

    Any advice, even critisisim, is welcome because I do not know what to do!
     
  2. Avatar

    Google AdSense Guest Advertisement


    to hide this advert.
  3. chief19spixi

    chief19spixi DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2007
    Messages:
    778
    I do not have a teenager but I would take away that cheerleading, and let her maintain a hermit status until she got her act togeather.. just my opinion.

    I know it must be hard and I wish you the best of luck with this issue!
     
  4. lisa8200

    lisa8200 <font color=red>Where did I put those tickets?<br>

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2007
    Messages:
    1,163
    How is her overall attitude. Does she do as you ask, when you ask. does she back talk. Kids have to be taught to take responsibility for thier actions... If you don't do what your supposed to do, you can't do what you want to do. No TV,Phone,Computer,Games,CHEERLEADING, boys,anything...and you do it for as long as it takes. They wil try I don't care, I hate you, and anything else to get to you. Even if its one at a time but don't just do it for a week and then wait to see what happens.Grounding is supposed to be punishment and punishment is supposed to make you not want to get punished, not make you do what your told.If you d.on't want to be punished you will do what your told to avoid it.I can't see a 15 yr old sitting in thier room for weeks with nothing to do but stare at the walls wanting to keep things that way. If you make it bearable, they will ride it out until you give up.Landon (step)DD treats her Dad BBBAAAAADDDD. and yet he refuses to stand up to her. He buys her stuf and she yells and screams at him and treats him like dirt...She doesn't even think about that here.Most of the time I don't think you can reason with a child that wants to act that way. You have to stand up and demand they act right. It won't be easy and it will takt alot of time..
    Or I don't know what I'm talking about and you can ignore what I've said...Who knows
     
  5. DisneyBishops

    DisneyBishops Fort Veteran

    Joined:
    May 28, 2008
    Messages:
    651
    good luck i am on my last of three teenagers. i have been pretty lucky. my first one was a girl also. She never failed but never tried very hard either. She barely graduated. Her problem was the crowd she hung out with and DRUGS. My next one was a great student and athlete. She fininshed community college in one year and earned a full ride athletic scholarship and is Junior in college. My last one is a Boy and is a junior in HS. He also is enrolled in community college and should graduate with both hs and AA degrees. He plays baseball and golf at shool and does well at both. So the moral to this story is sports do help so If you could get her into cheerleading it might help. If she could make the school team that might motivate her to work harder as you have to make decent grades to participate. Maybe take away something she really likes to do until she starts trying. Anyway I would watch her closely for drugs. They can take away all motivation. Also keep track of the company she keeps. Peer pressure is strong.

    Good Luck and no matter what you do sometimes it doesn't matter. I know you want the best for her but you can't make her do anything she doesn't want to. I feel bad for you and her because as we all know education is the way to a better life.


    Take care and hope this helps a little.
     
  6. terri01p

    terri01p DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2002
    Messages:
    3,625
    Oh geez...I went thru almost a simular thing with my dd, she alway hated school and school work and nothing I could do would change her. We even told her we were putting back college money for her so in order to take advantage she would have to step up her school work...she could have cared less, she graduated by the skin of her teeth and we spent the college money on our house. :rolleyes:

    She never straighten up untill she got out on her own and HAD to work, she got a job at a bank and finally settled down, she hung out with the worse kind of people in school and I beleive that was her problem, looking back I wish I would have made her stay away from that crowd.

    Now fast forward to today, she's married and works for 911 emergency services, who put her back thru school..:rolleyes1 and she will be the first to tell you that she wishes a thousand times over she would have studied in school and went on to college, you can never redo that part of your life. And all these friends have long been gone.

    All I can say is good luck and don't give up and hopefully one day she will grow up!
     
  7. HappyCamper87

    HappyCamper87 Mouseketeer

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2008
    Messages:
    399
    Thank you for sharing your experiences everyone. I needed the support tonight.

    She is pretty good at cheerleading and I have hoped that might motivate her to do well because she would have to keep her grades up, but she flat out ignored her coach so I can't think that is going to help at this point.

    I must say, my DH is a stay at home dad and we keep a pretty tight reign on her. I do not think drugs are involved and she is a pretty good kid just doesn't want to take responsibility for anything.

    I am probably going to take her out of cheerleading because it is costing me a lot of money that I don't really have and if she is not going to make any effort why should I? When I asked her if she wanted to be off the team she said she didn't care.

    I really think she thinks she can just smile and cute her way through anything in life and I certainly have not teached her that. Also got a failing grade notice already and we're only two weeks into the school year.

    She is full-on grounded, no phone, no computer, no going anywhere until she starts to show some form of responsibility. Honestly, if she doesn't start making any effort in school I think she should get her GED and go to work and get a taste of real life. Why spend four more years doing nothing, passing the required state test and being promoted on?

    Anyway, thanks for your input. And your warm thoughts are much appreciated.
     
  8. AuburnJen92

    AuburnJen92 DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    May 30, 2005
    Messages:
    8,253
    You know, you might be on to something there. If she is intelligent enough to get her GED now and she is 16, you might want to go ahead and consider it. Getting a taste of what it is like in the real world having to work every day for your meal money and having to pay you some rent and such might just jerk a knot in her tail. Technically, she is your responsibility until 18, but that doesn't mean she can't contribute to the household. If she doesn't want to go to school, then she needs to be a contributing member of society. I am sure minimum wage will not be suiting to her tastes and wants and needs in this point of her life, but maybe that is what she needs?

    Maybe a taste of the real world will help her realize that now is the time to get the education she needs. Later in life is the hardest time to finish your degree. There are people on the boards (including my husband) that have had to do this. It is no small feat.
     
  9. Married2Mickey

    Married2Mickey Mouseketeer

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2008
    Messages:
    84
    First of all, let me say :hug:

    As someone WAY smarter than me once said...What doesn't kill us makes us stronger. I don't have teenagers myself, but I've worked with several over the years with similar issues, and I completely sympathize and wish you the best. :hug:

    As I read the first post, I couldn't help but wonder what initially turned her off to school. Was it a sudden change? Did she lose interest in everything at once? Did something happen in her life around that time that may have been too big for her to cope with?

    I'm coming at this from the perspective of a child therapist, so please feel free to ignore me at your leisure. :hippie: It just sounds like something has taken a shot at her self-esteem and I wonder if what you're seeing is her way of dealing with it.

    I hope everything works out for you. Best of luck to your whole family. :goodvibes
     
  10. g8trmom1

    g8trmom1 <font color=darkorchid>Hi, I'm Gatordad's wife....

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2008
    Messages:
    541
    I'm hardly an expert, since my DD is only 10. BUT, so far I'd like to think we're doing a great job with our kids....that said:

    I would not have kept her in Cheerleading if she was doing that horrible in school. Sorry. My children have been taught that there are certain rights and privileges. Things like extra curricular activities are EARNED for doing a good job in school and are taken away if they screw up. PERIOD. I would also be weary of DRUGS. My half brother dropped out of school in the 9th grade...it was the friends he was hanging out with and the drugs. Fast forward alot of tears and years later, he died because of drugs at 32. My kids know all about what drugs will do to you and they will kill you. They also know, even at this young age, that they ARE going to college, and they want to go. Just my 2 cents.
     
  11. auntie

    auntie <font color=darkorchid>It's a really lovely way to

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2003
    Messages:
    7,311
    Middle school is the worst. It sounds as if at some point during those years something happened where she figured it didn't matter whether she tried or not..she wasn't going to do well. So why bother. Of course that's just carried over to high school..even bigger changes. How to turn that around? I'm not sure taking away an activity that keeps her busy and involved in a productive way is a good idea. She wanted to do something else, so she lied to the coach. But..she wasn't out drinking, she went to another school function. The GED doesn't sound like a bad option. How does she feel about it?..I would also seriously consider talking with a therapist or professional of some sort before making that decision. There might be more going on here than even you are aware of.
     
  12. chief19spixi

    chief19spixi DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2007
    Messages:
    778

    You never know school might be boring for her cause she already knows what they are teaching.. maybe getting a ged is best for her.

    Good luck dear!!
     
  13. DisneyBishops

    DisneyBishops Fort Veteran

    Joined:
    May 28, 2008
    Messages:
    651
    I have to agree with the GED thing. My oldest had 2 kids before she was 20, now she works full time and is a single mom. many times she has told me she wishes she would have listened to me and gone to college. All of those so called friends are all in jail or on drugs. Please do not rule out drugs. Even the best of kids get involed sometimes. I have seen first hand what they can do. If she doesn't want to go to school let her get GED and go to work at McDonalds. She will find out quick what it is like to work in the real world. IT might just motivate her to go to college and get a good education.

    If all that doesn't work then please get some professional help for her. Whatever you do please don't give up on her.
     
  14. HappyCamper87

    HappyCamper87 Mouseketeer

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2008
    Messages:
    399
    I can't quote each of you who have given advice, because I don't want to make this a huge post but... Thank you.

    She has been seen by a therapist who said she is a normal teenager. She is a very confident person with a lot of friends. Some I like more than others but most of them are good students and active in cheerleading or some sort of sport.

    She probably does have some "daddy" issues because I divorced her father when she was 2 and she thinks the sun rises and sets in him. Although he never makes time for her or would even consider letting her live with him because her step-mom would not have it, they have two young children of their own. And I'm sure this does effect her to some degree but I never make excuses for her dad or talk badly of him because I feel like she deserves to make her own opinion.

    She is smart, I had her tested for learning disabilities and she has an above-average IQ and no ADD or HDD or any other D that they could find.

    Finally, I would NEVER give up on one of my kids I love her to death I'm just very concerned that she thinks she can get by with good looks and a great personality.

    There were no school problems until middle school and I think friends and popularity became her job. I know I have not handled everything perfectly and I should have said no to cheerleading, but as others have said, I thought it might motivate her to doing better in school because you have to have passing grades. And I wanted her to be interested in something other than fashion, make-up and friends.

    I'm talking with her guidance counselor today to see what we can do to try to get her on the right track. Last night was just the hair on the camel's back and I probably over-reacted.

    Thanks again everyone. I too am a work in progress. :hippie:
     
  15. auntie

    auntie <font color=darkorchid>It's a really lovely way to

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2003
    Messages:
    7,311
    I mean it sounds like you have it covered. She's been tested, and you don't think there are any reasons that she's acting this way. If it really is that she's pretty and thinks she can get by on that...well if she's failing..how's that workin' for her?...She's gonna get herself kicked out. I mean you have to have a certain amount of credits each year to be promoted to the following. At least that's how it is here. They don't promote without producing anymore. Does she want to be with younger kids and not her friends?
    I do remember one year with my older son. In our school district you get sent a progress report every 5 weeks. Only problem is..by the time you got it..more like 8 weeks had passed. With the quarter ending at 10 weeks, it didn't help you out much. So I printed out a form that he had to have signed by each of his teachers every Friday. They had to indicate if he was up to date on his assignments and classwork. it held him accountable..but it also kept his teachers accountable to. I didn't want to know there was a problem, only when it was too late to do something about it. If I tell you I only had to do it once..for one 5 week period. He knew, if he goofed off again..he'd have to bring in his embarassing weekly progress reports.
    My youngest is in high school now. he is very involved in sports..where if he doesn't have passing grades, he isn't able to participate. So that is incentive to keep up with his school work.
    As others have suggested...maybe a GED is the way to go. If she wants no part of school..a dose of the real world maybe the only thing that works for her. Does your school district have any "alternative school" programs. We did at one time, but their isn't any room in the budget for it any longer. Shame, because it was a good idea.
     
  16. PolynesianPixie

    PolynesianPixie <font color=blue>Creating my own fairy tale realit

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2007
    Messages:
    5,004
    I've taken my time responding to this thread because...1, my oldest is 12 and I'm not sure I have the expertise to give advice here...and 2...I wanted to read some responses because I have a feeling that my youngest DD may give me some of the same things to deal with once she hits high school! :lmao:

    Although, growing up as a somewhat unmotivated teenage girl myself, I may have a little insight. I can tell you, that middle school is pivotal in a girl's life. Emotions, hormones, peer pressure, tougher classes...all make for a very successful start to high school or a very difficult one. What I would try to do at this point, is find something she is good at. She needs her confidence more than anything right now. She sounds like she is a good kid. Maybe right now she knows she is nice and pretty but when it comes to school and other things she probably isn't all that sure of herself. I think what I would do, is get her a tutor. At least once a week, preferably more. That way she will have to devote time to her studies. Maybe even get some of her friends and parents to rally together and have a study night once a week. Make it fun, by taking turns at each other's homes, have snacks and sodas and allow some time for chit chat, too. Sometimes a little extra help is all one needs to gain that confidence and know that school work isn't as daunting as it appears. She probably has a fear of trying. Failure when you don't try doesn't really feel like failing. Failing when you put forth effort is downright painful.

    Good luck. You're doing a good job. Motivating somebody else is one of the hardest things to do, because they have to let you.
     
  17. AuburnJen92

    AuburnJen92 DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    May 30, 2005
    Messages:
    8,253
    I am so glad you are taking the time to not give up on her and stick it through. I see too many times with the kids in HS where they don't. It is sad to watch what goes on here sometimes. I hope that she can understand that you want the best for her. It is so hard to watch them self destruct. You definitely don't want them to struggle their whole lives.
     
  18. HappyCamper87

    HappyCamper87 Mouseketeer

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2008
    Messages:
    399
    You know, I tried the same thing with getting the signatures from the teachers last year and it never worked. We had meetings at least 3 times with her whole "team" where all of said she's capable but she just isn't doing the work. All of us, her teachers and me wanted to support and help and gave suggestions on how to be more organized etc... She just never tried. And I have been lax about punishing because she is such a good kid in other areas but now it's in my face wrong and I realize I should have been tougher earlier.

    In our county if they pass the FCAT they move on it does not matter what grade they have in class. I don't get it, I don't agree with it but as she was 15 and if I held her back in 8th should would be 17 as a freshman in high school it did not make sense for me to fight the system to try to get her held back.

    I have had some tutoring done but again, it's a money thing... Actually the intern who has worked with me for the past two years is a great student and her sister who did not do so great in school as a freshman and now regrets it is my daughters mentor at the school and we think she may be able to "tutor" my daughter some and we hope that may help.

    I don't want to go on and on about this but it sure does help to have input from you all even though we have not met and I do not get to spend as much time on the boards as I'd like (shouldn't be on now) I have come to appreciate you all and value your insights, humor and honesty.

    I'll give an update when I talk w/guidance counselor today.
     
  19. vick

    vick I just want to win!

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2008
    Messages:
    2,799
    Happy camper, your dd sounds a lot like my neice. They found out when she was in 11th grade that she had a form of dyslexia. It wasn't so much the written words that gave her problems, it was the way she "heard" things. It had an effect on the way she would comprehend the things she would hear.

    I also know of a girl that got a softball scholarship to the University of FL. She struggled and didn't make it through the 1st semester there. After testing, they found out she had dyslexia. She had struggled al her life and they only found her dyslexia when she was 19. I know you mention testing her for ADD and several things, but have they tested her for dyslexia?
     
  20. Us3

    Us3 <img src=http://www.wdwinfo.com/images/smilies/tin

    Joined:
    May 17, 2003
    Messages:
    1,936
    Good luck with everything Liz. I didn't offer any advise because I don't have teens yet. I hope you're able to find something that works! :hug: Hopefully you can find something very precious to her that will allow the action/consequence punishment to work!
     
  21. Married2Mickey

    Married2Mickey Mouseketeer

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2008
    Messages:
    84
    Your DD is very very lucky to have a caring parent like you! :goodvibes Raising a teenager is tough, and there is no such thing as a perfect parent (though I do wish that my DS had come with an instruction manual sometimes :teacher: :lmao: ). Perfection doesn't do anyone any good, and your DD is going to benefit more from your love ('tough love' and otherwise) than anything else you can do for her. I'm certainly no expert, but if I could impart any advice at all it would be to stick to your guns, do what you think is right, trust your instincts, and most of all be consistent. In the end, there is nothing we can do to actually change someone's behaviors. We can urge them, teach them, and show them the consequences of their actions, but ultimately they will have to decide that they want to make the changes themselves.

    You're doing a great job! Best of luck to you all. :hug:
     

Share This Page