I have a 17-year-old daughter. She does not respect me, she shouts at me and she goes to parties where there are older friends and alcohol consumption, against my wishes.

She just goes out every day and comes back late in the night and sometimes the following day. She does not do anything around the house and right now I am just fed up with her behaviour.


3 Answers 3


First I would like to say I'm very sorry that you are dealing with this. I delt with this issue a lot with my boys at the same age. I would love to have some sort of fix-it-all answer for you, but I don't. However, I do have some advice as to what NOT to do which I learned through my own experiences.

1) Stop beating YOURSELF up...we all do it. Parental guilt, making it our fault, wearing our selves out mentally and emotionally with "I should have..." or "I shouldn't have..." It's just a waste of time.

2) Do NOT engage in yelling, fighting, empty threats or unrealistic negotiations. You are an adult. Behave like one. Do not allow your teen age child to pull you down to that level. If you find yourself getting there, walk away. Also, never allow anyone, especially your own child, to yell at you. When she starts yelling, cursing or throwing a fit. Stop. Turn around. WALK AWAY. When she's finished, she can have your attention.

3) Stop enabling her. She is only 17 years old...what are her resources? You. One of the best things I ever did was stop funding my teens poor choices and behavior. Were they mad...OH YA!! They were furious and it was all my fault (In their minds any way) It was also very hard to do. We have this ingrained parental reflex to jump when our children say jump. This is necessary when they are infants but we tend to forget that as they grow so must the way and the what of what we provide for them. We forget to stop putting their shoes on for them, fixing their plates, making their beds....the list is endless. We keep saying we want them to be independent, capable adults but don't give them the necessary opportunities to learn what they need to learn to do that. What are some ways to stop enabling? Stop financing her, no cash. Stop making it so easy for her to just come and go as she pleases. Stop providing transportation so easily. If your paying any of her bills...STOP. Don't threaten, just stop. She's 17. If she wants to waste time and money, let her start doing it with her own time and money.

4) This is the big one...LET GO. Yes, she is only 17, but she is right on that edge where you can no longer make and control her choices (however you can stop funding it and making it easy). As much as Answer #2 sounds like "damage control"...at least it will give you SOME control. I just recently had the terrifying experience of watching my 18 year old son take a paternity test......I can not put into words how stressful this was. Thankfully I made sure to drill safe sex into my kids and he swore he was safe...he is not the father btw.

The simple fact is there is a point in parenting where all your doing is praying a lot. We have created a society where we keep trying to make our children's lives easier by over providing, over stimulating and over extending our selves in the name of love for our children. Are they our children? Yes...but they are also human beings and human beings learn by trial and error. You can't do it for her. We all have this fantasy that our children should learn from our mistakes, so did our parents. But last I checked we are all still out there making the same basic mistakes. How does that song go..."Jesus take the wheel".

Again, this is just what I've learned from my own experience. My youngest is now 16 and the things her brothers taught me have made things so much easier when dealing with her. My boys have survived and are still making mistakes, but I have learned how to deal with them so I don't go crazy and I'm a better parent for it. I wish you the best of luck and remember to breathe!

  • Thanks d comments are helpfull. I dont her transport bcos trasportation is free for her untill she is 18. She does not have respect for me at all.
    – agnes
    Commented Apr 5, 2016 at 20:25
  • Does she not respect you or is she just acting out of anger over other things and you are her outlet? This is why observation and asking questions helps. Also, have you ever told her how much it hurts your feelings that she behaves this way? We tend to forget to humanize ourselves to our children. They need to know we have feelings too, we hurt, we aren't perfect, we are only doing our best with what we know. We are people, we just want to be happy, just like them. I know my boys changed a lot when I started to express how much they hurt me with their poor behavior. Guilt works both ways. Commented Apr 5, 2016 at 20:49

What does your SO think about the behaviour? You have a better chance to change your daughter's behaviour if you stand united and both try to change her.
I think you should try talking to your daughter about her behaviour and ask her to change and if she doesn't you need to take some actions like don't give her money, won’t buy soda for her and so on.

  • sit and talk with our closed one will solve most of the problems. But, "if you do these then i wont do these" these kind of behaviour also makes children's distance from the parents. They might get feeling like you are not understanding them, also they will not going to tell you if they do something or if they are in any good or bad situation. Commented Dec 8, 2016 at 11:10

I'd say make sure that she knows everything about contraception. That she takes condoms with her - I'd insist on that; if the subject is embarrassing her that's good to know but still insist. On the other hand explain to her that a male wanting sex without having contraception with him himself is useless and must be avoided. Make it clear to her that a baby means the end of party life.

As for consuming alcohol, having something to eat before she leaves reduces the effect. Fatty foods are best. Encourage her to go for good drinks, to drink to enjoy it, not to drink to get drunk.

Pocket money in exchange for house work may also help. If she doesn't want to do house work, don't do it for her. Once she has no clean clothes she may learn how to use the washing machine quite quickly.

PS. Someone remarked this was damage control, and not solving the problem. The problem will solve itself when she grows up. Damage control up to that point in time isn't bad at all. But it's not just damage control. At age 17, a lot of the kid's behaviour is rebellion against the parent(s). Trying to "solve" the problem will just lead to more rebellion. But what's the point getting drunk at 17 when your parents don't get upset about it? That's half the fun gone.

  • 4
    While I agree with you, I think that those measures are just damage control, they do not solve the problem.
    – Dariusz
    Commented Apr 4, 2016 at 11:15

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