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Old 11-22-2018, 07:45 PM #1
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Default Daughter and Christmas

My daughter doesn't want to see my family at Christmas. She is 16 and I'm not allowed to make her go. She would rather see her step mom's family and her dad's. But not mine. I'm hurt, I angry, and my hands are tied.

She says the thought of it gives her anxiety. She's said she's an atheist which upsets my mother greatly, and me for that matter. My brother thinks she's just trying to push buttons. She dresses in sweats, which I think is awful, she has short boy cut hair. Strangers think she's a boy. And she's put on weight another sore spot with Grandma. On top of that she's bisexual she says; gay is more like it, but has a boyfriend. My mom thinks biyfriend is to keep the peace with her family that she lives with. She's come out to us, not sure if she has to her dad, but I told him what she said.

She actually lied to me causing me to start a fight with the ex where I got the truth. She's really making me upset. I feel like she's using me for a fun outing but not really trying to build the relationship. She spends more time on her phone than with me. I'm really trying to figure out how to resolve this. I'm also thinking of changing our visits to volunteer opportunities. It's too costly to me and I'm feeling used. When she doesn't want to do an overnight or see my family for the holiday.
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Old 11-23-2018, 12:37 AM #2
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Default Re: Daughter and Christmas

Hi Aviza.

I think that your daughter at 16 is simply trying to find her place in the world. Many young teenagers have a tough time of things trying on new faces, wrestling with beliefs and their own ideas of the world, testing boundaries, coping with peer pressure and exploring/defining their sexuality...not to mention choosing career paths and the added pressure with study obligations. Most certainly some of her behaviour would be of concern if she was acting out and putting herself or others in danger, but from what you have written, sounds like typical rebellious teenage stuff.

I would suggest giving her a wide berth, whilst keeping an eye on her moods and keeping an open dialogue...not only about the negative , but also positive things that are going on in her life right now. Positive reinforcement is so important at this age.
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Old 11-23-2018, 01:04 AM #3
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Default Re: Daughter and Christmas

It sounds like your daughter is practicing good self care. She may feel like you donít like her for who she is. Why would she want to be around people who donít like the way she dresses, the way she cuts her hair, who she cares intimately about, what she believes in, or even her physical appearance?! It makes sense that she'd choose to stay away from an environment that makes her feel bad for being herself.
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Old 11-23-2018, 05:21 AM #4
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Default Re: Daughter and Christmas

((((Aviza)))) I'm sorry you're struggling. It sounds like your daughter is simply behaving like any teenager around his time... I don't think it's a good idea to force any behavior on her. Just let her be, as long as she's safe, these years are important for her for discovering herself, including her sexuality. Just remember to be there to listen if she needs it. Hopefully you'll be able to build a better relationship that way.
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Old 11-23-2018, 08:08 AM #5
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Default Re: Daughter and Christmas

Itís kind of understandable she feels anxious if you and your family judges her appearance, religious beliefs, her weight and her sexuality.

I think if you want closer relationship with her you need to make an effort to understand her for who she is, not who you want her to be.

You donít need to spend money to have relationship with your kid. Just talk to her. Volunteering isnít a bad idea either.
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Old 11-23-2018, 08:14 AM #6
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Default Re: Daughter and Christmas

Relationships between mothers and teenage daughters are often difficult. I think things will get better as she gets older.

But I would also have a hard time spending time with family who criticizes my religious beliefs, the way I dress, the way I cut my hair, the fact that I put on weight, and my sexuality.

I gained quite a bit of weight in grad school, and my family gave me such a hard time about it that I didn't want to spend any holidays with them. Extended family usually feels no compulsion about telling me I'm overweight. Actually, they did this even when I was in the normal weight range for my height. Now I am actually overweight, and I don't really want to see any of them to hear what they have to say about it.

Maybe you can try to be a bit more accepting or at least not criticize her to her face.
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Old 11-23-2018, 08:54 AM #7
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Default Daughter and Christmas

I agree with the advice everyone has given here about teenagers... itís a rough stage for them and itís hard for the parents too. I remember it well and wouldnít want to do it again... itís definitely best to let her be herself and to accept that she wants to be her own person. I found that it helped to develop new interests and hobbies for myself... and volunteer work and stuff. I found new ways to redirect my attention and energy. It was the best way I could manage to get myself through it all.
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Old 11-23-2018, 09:24 AM #8
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Default Re: Daughter and Christmas

I think it would be fair for you to say, "You're my daughter and I love you. I will miss having you around for the holidays immensely. However, I can respect how you feel. I am a phone call away if you change your mind."
I sort of agree with your brother about pushing the envelope with you. Rebellion is more effective when it's a known sore spot. Although with sexuality there is the biology factor. but with everything else it could be a bit of spite.
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Old 11-25-2018, 04:04 PM #9
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Default Re: Daughter and Christmas

Quote:
Originally Posted by divine1966 View Post
Itís kind of understandable she feels anxious if you and your family judges her appearance, religious beliefs, her weight and her sexuality.
Exactly my impression after reading the opening post...
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Old 11-27-2018, 06:52 AM #10
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Default Re: Daughter and Christmas

I don't want to be rude, but I've not seen you post anything about your daughter that you like. If I were in her position, I wouldn't want to come around either, because I would feel endlessly judged and criticized.

If there is something about her that you do like and approve of, please tell her instead of focusing on what you disapprove of.

Be it known, I speak as the Christian mother of a genderfluid atheist. I love my oldest child with all my heart, even though I don't like those things. I will do as requested and use gender-neutral pronouns when referring to them, and not try to change them in any way. It isn't my life to live. The only thing I can do is live by my own code of beliefs, not make them do it too.
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