Online Parent Support Chat


She has even threatened to run away or turn us in to CPS...

I am in need of some help. I have a 12 year old daughter that is out of control. And yes, we have tried everything. I have heard about the total transformation but it was too expensive. I have been married 4 years but in a relationship with husband for almost 8 years. My daughter absolutely won't obey either one of us. Constantly pushing buttons and refusing to do the smallest things. She is moody and arrogant. I think alot of her problem is her friends at school who don't have fathers in the house and whose mothers work. These kids have everything. My daughters father died when she was 4 years old and he wasn't very nice to her. My husband had substance abuse issues early in the relationship and he does struggle with his anger which is tested daily by my daughter and she knows it. She has even threatened to run away or turn us in to CPS. There has been no abuse. She just doesn't like to be told what to do and says that basically if she doesn't get her way she will "tell". The marriage is strained, my other two daughters and I are feeling the heat from the chaos between my daughter and husband and she is extremely disrespectful to me too.

My Out-of-Control Teen


It feels that we are being abused by his actions...

We have set the boundaries, but I really feel we are missing something. I will also point out that this is a child that had the biggest heart only 3 years ago and now says he is incapable of feeling empathy for anyone. He was in the end of his eighth grade year at a catholic grade school when he decided he was atheist. He had decent grades and gets along with teachers. When people meet him they wouldn't believe he has such a dark side.

Our son (16.5 yrs) was in a residential treatment facility for drugs. When he was there we worked together on a recovery plan and a plan on moving forward when he got home. He seemed open to this and we were cautiously optimistic.

We have followed a plan just like you have in your book and online guide. We have been sticking to our side of the plan and not given privileges because he is doing nothing to earn them. He says he doesn't need anything from us, so he feels no need to be controlled by us.

Basically the plan had him working on his recovery and gaining back privileges. The day he came home he went back to his using gang and didn't abide by curfew; 5:00 on school nights and if he is not home by 10:00 the doors will be locked and he will be stuck outside. He has been doing the later. For the most part he is here for the hour before school and (why I don't know, the grades are not passing grades) we drive him to school. We live in the country so he is either getting a ride late at night or walking the 6 miles from town. He tells us he can't make curfew if he can't get a ride. We let him know that he could make curfew but it is his choice to wait and see if he gets a ride, otherwise he could time it out right. We would also pick him up from school or he could take the bus. That is the only time we will give him a ride, we do not give him rides to or from hanging with his old crowd of friends, because it was with that crowd that he was using. He has also let us know he is smoking pot again, but he will abide by our wishes and not bring it into our house.

He was not supposed to work until he got his grades up and finished his outpatient work for rehab and was working with a counselor on his anxiety issue. Neither of those happened, but he got his job back anyway, we have told him we will not sabotage it for him (believing he will do it on his own) but we will NOT support it by providing transportation or getting him up for work. Our reason besides the fact he didn't hold up his end of the bargain was that before when he had a job he used the majority of the money to buy drugs.

I know this is probably too long, but what can we do now? The people from his rehab program tell us he needs a crash (let go and let God). However at times it feels that we are being abused by his actions. The lack of control and his behavior goes against every parenting ideal we had. We try to point out to him when he says “life sucks and that is just the way it is”, he is making that choice, we are here to support him when he makes a decision to fight for his life, we love him and want to help him succeed. When asked what he wants out of his life, his response is, “nothing and it doesn't matter I am just going to die in the end”. He has not had any suicide attempts, but he is letting his life style take him down.

My Out-of-Control Teen


She is very defiant...

I have a 13 year old daughter. Before Christmas she was not doing her homework, not interested. She was sick for 2 weeks with strep throat and from then on she did not want to go back to school. She would go sometimes to the resource room and do homework, would not last for long. She will go out with friends, things she wants to do, but will not go to school. She is very defiant in everything we ask her to do.

She just watches TV and eats, she has put on weight. She does keep her self pretty clean and still will go out with friends. I believe she just does not want to go to school, I don’t believe she is depressed because she goes out with her friends when we let her. Anytime I try and talk to her she won’t listen, leave the room. The only time she is nice and will talk is when she is getting something back like a friend over, going to youth group, something she wants. I know what she is doing, but I don’t want her not to have contact with her friends. She wants to be left alone, not to talk to her. It’s as if she is a stranger or someone just staying there like a boarding house. What can I do.

She has already missed 3 months of school. I have called the Crisis Stabilization Unit, this is after you have tried everything. They will come out to the home and talk to the child and make them go to school, they will also take that child away for a few days to a group home to show them what it’s like in a group home. We may go this way, seems nothing is working. I have tried to get her to see a child youth counselor, and also a child psychiatrist, she will not see anyone. I am at my wits end. What can my husband and I do. We also have a 18 year old son, who does well for himself. Totally different person. He is in his first year of Engineering at University. He has tried to ask her why she won’t go to school but she won’t tell him. She does keep promising she will go back to school next week. Nothing happens, and she still expects to get all the benefits which I don’t give her.

My Out-of-Control Daughter

His rage has caused so much hurt...

My son (16) recently got 'annoyed' at his father and I for asking him to turn down his music. His dad walked into his room, asked him again to turn it down, Ben said no plus a few other unnecessary comments, Dad said please turn it down or I will need to confiscate it... meanwhile Ben was standing with his face and body centimetres away from his father's face... my hubby (regretfully) pushed him away out of his space to which Ben then 'tackled' his father into a wall, then cupboard, then chest of drawers etc etc. There were punches thrown by Ben but his father just tried to restrain his arms and legs throughout the episode.

He refuses to acknowledge that his rage has caused so much hurt... it was all his father's fault. He sees the whole incident completely differently to how it was. He is also annoyed at us because the following day he wanted money to buy jeans to go to a concert and we did not give it to him.

This all happened a couple of days ago. Much has happened before all of this over the last year but this was a huge and very destructive event (emotionally) in our family life.

I have asked him if he is happy with the situation in our home and he says that he doesn't care about anything, all he needs is a place to sleep for free... doesn't care about what kind of relationship we might or might not have, does not feel any need or wish to be considerate/kind/helpful to any of us in any way... because he feels of course that we are not considerate or giving to him...he says that I have to make the first step to making things better by doing nice things for him like buying his jeans.... of course there have actually been many things that I have done for him in the normal course of being a mum - cleaning, feeding, allowing friends over, providing phone and internet access (minor amounts) etc. I do not consider myself indulgent of him, in fact I believe that we all should do things for each other and be considerate of everyone in the home and family. Our children have always helped with minor chores but of course now that they are 16 and 15 both are starting to say more and more that they are not our slaves and they don't need to do anything for us.

I realise that he is trying to control what goes on in our home. His father and I both work full time but try and have several meals together each week to talk etc. He has a girlfriend, which is yet another complete story. I just want us all to be civil, kind and considerate of each others needs..... but I don't know how to begin without feeling like it is only myself that gives and does... I feel that I have taken the 'first step' but he doesn't recognise any of it and says that all that I am doing is what I have always done and am supposed to do as
a mother.

My Out-of-Control Teen


Daughter has wrecked havoc over the past 2 years...

We have an almost 17 year old daughter that has wrecked some havoc over the past 2 years in our home. However we are on our way back to normal life now------ We have told her that she needs to find employment before she gets a car. She currently has a job but it is only 3 1/2 hours per week---basically not a job there. Anyway she tells us she already has a job---I said she needs something with more hours and regular hours before she will get a car. We are toying around with paying 1/2 of the cars price. Well she refused to go to town and get applications. We let it go that day as we weren't sure just how to MAKE her do this. We have told her she is 17 and will not be sitting around the house all summer long doing nothing! So the next day they had no school here---so we told her she would need to go to town that morning and come home with 8 applications. She refused we told her that she will not get together with her boyfriend again until she does this task. She got ready and headed to town and brought home 8 applications. Has filled out about 5 and returned them. so do we push for the other 3? I sometimes question myself when dealing with her cuz she has basically targeted me with her nasty treatment and sometimes I think I am holding it against her!! I try my hardest not to though. anyway was it right to dangle the boyfriend in order to motivate her? Or should we have done the grounding for a day? or would you ground her until she completed the task--wether it took a week or 2? And what would you take away? everything or certain privelages? I am fuzzy on that area.

My daughter it seems is constantly asking me for stuff wether it is privelages or items. I don't run out and buy things for her but you would swear that I do by the way she acts! My boys don't ask for things or privileges like she does---it confuses me. She usually starts in around 10:00pm which in our house is time to head up to your rooms for bed. I have told her before when she brings things up that this is not the hour to be asking for things. it is bedtime---go to bed. But then I feel like I am telling her she can't ask me things----as she has told me she can't talk to me about stuff----yet she seems to be able to when she is in a good mood and wants something!!! I know that is that guilty trip thing going on there correct?? Is it cruel and unusual to set up a time with her that she needs to have things asked by say 8:00pm at night? I mean I don't need to have all these things thrown at me just before heading to bed---as then I don't sleep well. What are your feelings on setting up a limit on how late things can be asked. I have talked to her about the constant asking for reading your program I feel like I should be setting up her to earn the things being asked for? What if you run out of things for them to do?? I mean lastnight in about 15 minutes time I was asked for about 6 things!! One I have already told her No on---but apparently she isn't accepting that answer. I told her no again about it lastnight. Please help out here.

Can she earn privileges of freedom and such with good behavior? As she has been controlling her mouth for about a good week here now. OR do you feel a person needs to do a chore to earn stuff?

What are your feelings on setting up limits such as
*no phone calls after 9:00pm in our home
*can only get together with boyfriend one time per week (as we feel she is all about the boyfriend) we have told her we need to see even time spent with girlfriends as with the boyfriend. We don't feel kids need to be in tightly woven relationships during high school. Makes for way too much drama we feel.
* she gets a 1/2 hour phone call at night with her boyfriend. however he now has a job and she has gymnastics and sometimes they don't get their call started til 8:50----so sometimes we have allowed them to talk til 9:15 going past our 9:00pm rule IF she has been controlling her behavior and mouth. Are we sending a mixed message here or are we showing her she can earn a little time with controlling herself?

She is going to Prom I guess---she will get a new dress (we pay $50 her paying the rest up to $150) , she is tanning for prom---which she is paying for and now she is asking to get her nails done too!! WHICH she has said she will pay for. She only earns her money from her job---we don't give allowances in our house at this time. SO----I am feeling that with the new dress and tanning maybe that is enough for this prom. But if she is paying do we have the right to tell her no? You say they need to earn things---no free handouts---however how do you handle it when THEY are paying for the stuff? we try to raise our kids with the mentallity that you don't need all the latest gadgets and stuff to feel good about who you are. She has all texting shut off her cell phone as she totally abused the rule we set up for that. We gave her 3 months to abide by the rules and she just coudln't do it---so it was gone. Is that the wrong way to go about it? We want to raise our kids being able to talk to people with their mouths---not using texting and maybe saying things they never would wtih their mouths. The cell phones sit on the counter at home when they are home. No phones in the bedrooms. No tv's or computers in bedrooms either. Are we being too hard on them? She is the only one that seems to buck the rules at this time. So she is making us question our values and morals here. How do you get passed that feeling? we try to raise our kids with the less is more way of being. Are we wrong in doing that?

I have a problem with her and her money handling abilities. I try to talk to her about saving. But do we have the right to tell them how to spend their money? I think we do-----however they want you to feel like it is there money--they earned it they will spend it how they want. I talk to her about saving for college wether it is just money to go out on or buy pizza with and such. She has $600 in her savings at this moment and she thinks that is ALOT of money. I try to explain to her that really that is nothing compared to what she will need!! I guess I am unclear on how to go about setting up spending limits on the money they earn themselves. How will they learn to save if we the parents don't show them or TELL them to??

Us the parents strive not to overindulge our kids. They have dirt bikes but they earned the money for those themselves by working on our farm. We live in a 100 year old home that we totally gutted and redid in 4 months time-----it was a good lesson on showing kids how you can have something nice if you are willing to work for it. we did almost all the work ourselves on our house---the kids all helped out too. We don't drive new vehicles --however we take care of what we do have so they look nice. They get gifts at xmas and b-days----but other than that if they want something they need to earn the money and pay for it that way-----or they use money they get from relatives for b-days and xmas. I have 2 boys that seem to GET IT.........they are 16 and 12. Then there is the daughter who feels she needs to have everything that pops into her head. She wasn't raised that way. This is so confusing to us. I would greatly appreciate some sort of responses from you on my questions. Thanks so much for your expertise and time!! I am getting through the videos kind of slowly as our internet speed isn't fast enough to play them straight through it keeps having to stop and buffer!!! So I try to get to the library to watch them there---but it all takes time! :) Thanks again. Vicki

One last bit of information here---something I have thought about since we started in with all this defiance with her----it seemed to start around the time that my husband starting putting our son one year younger than her into the farming operation as in driving tractor and basically becoming his right hand man. The boy is VERY capable---learns quickly and easily -----just a good kid. On other hand it seemed to me that my daughter maybe resented the fact that her dad chose her brother over her. Granted she was always in some sort of sport or activity and just wasn't home much like the brother---plus she isn't a quick learner---my husband didn't want to take the extra time to teach her over and over. Which I can understand with working on a farm you only have a certain window of time to get your crops In and Out of the fields. I am just kind of thinking that made her feel like she wasn't as important and that is why she went off the edge, so to say. that was when she decided to hang with people that were so different from how she was raised. Do you feel I might have a theory here about why things may have went wrong here? I have implemented her into the kitchen stuff----AND after explaining this to my husband he is trying to implement her more into the farm operation. She says she wants to drive tractor ---then when it comes to the day to do it she chickens out. So------just a thought here.

Ask the Parent Coach

My 12 year old son is getting into trouble at school...

My 12 year old son is getting into trouble at school. He seems to be misbehaving and then being disrespectful to adults that do not show him respect. He has encountered problems w/lunch monitors, bus drivers and teachers at the school who have embarrased him or called him names. Instead of keeping his mouth shut and telling an adult that he can trust what these adults have said to him, he tries to handle the problem on his own which only leads to a punishment for him, such as in-school and out of school suspension. He is extremely impulsive and most times acts and speaks before he stops to think. He is easily frustrated and very sensitive. We have tried to implement firm consequences letting him know what we expect from him and that we know that he knows the right thing to do. Nothing seems to be working. He says that he is not sure why he acts out, but sometime it is just because he is following the actions of another student. I am going to make an appointment w/either a social worker or psychologist. The school wanted to involve the social worker in a court setting where he would have 3 months probation for his actions. I think this is a little extreme. He is not violent. He is just very disruptive and impulsive. He has leadership qualities, but unfortunately becomes a follower most of the time.

My Out-of-Control Son

Out of control daughter...

My daughter has to mop the kitchen and bathroom floors every week, as well as help in the kitchen either cleaning or cooking, after work. She travels around to schools, and often has to leave at 5-6 am. We had her move back home after getting poor grades at college. I told her she had to do well in high school, or I refused to pay for her college. Subsequently she has substantial student loans. We made too much money to get the interest deferred, so her loans are increasing as we speak. She had no interest in high school, however, when it came time, she wanted to go to college (just to get away from home, and to avoid growing up) I wanted her to live at home and go to a community college. My husband talked me into letting her go to a state school. She has adhd and spent most of her time socializing and goofing off. She is not a bad kid. No drugs, no sex. But she was doing some drinking/partying. Went on probation 1st sem. Grades up to B’s 2nd sem. All d’s and 1c 3rd. I had her move home and told her she had to go to community college, and get a part time job, too. She went on a job interview for a “part-time photographer”. They told her they would hire her on the spot, if she agreed to full time.

She has been working since the end of January, but it is not “steady” 40 hrs. Some weeks more, some less. She is doing better at doing chores. We use the art of saying “yes” when it comes to going to the mall, etc. We even have required that she pay us back what she owes us for the last semester (which we did finance). We are also collecting money from her to pay for some of her share of the utilities, and rent. But she wants to go to see her friends on weekends. She has NEVER had friends that she just visited. There always had to be a sleep-over, even when she was a kid. Being adhd, she didn’t have a lot of friends, so we did enable this behavior. She has no friends locally, and I am torn. I want her to be able to spend time with friends, however, according to the program, I can’t think of what kinds or how many extra chores she could do after working over-time, that would enable her this level of privilege. I need your input. Her father is a push-over. And although he sees the value of this program, if it was up to him, it would be okay for her to just go, since she worked all week and did her weekly chores.

My Out-of-Control Daughter

Out of control daughter...

Help... we are stuck. Our out of control daughter that is 16 years of age has been grounded for numerous reasons over the past two years. There have been periods of time in the two years that she has not been grounded although these times are not for very long. Some of the things that we have been dealing with are as follows:

Sex (suspect once in 07) ( now, since September 08) still seeing boyfriend at school. HAVING PROBLEMS COMING UP WITH CONSEQUENCES

Drug use (Marijuana)( first time not sure, but first time found “potato head” pipe in room April 09) HAVING PROBLEMS HERE TO

Retail Theft (Jan 09) (she paid fines and is attending theft class this weekend for it. We added an additional com service for church until end of school.)

Theft at her place of work ( Dec 08) she paid for it(her $), made amends and did 24 hours community service. (She seems sorry but still don’t trust her

Back talk (getting worse in 08 - 09) HAVEN’T ADRESSED THIS YET, well we have, but very badly apparently

Cutting (1st time with boy friend may of 07) got counseling and body checks thereafter, seemed to go away) she seemed healthier after break up with boy friend may of 07)caution

Attempted running away (twice in 07 )let go of this one too

Talk of suicide ( mostly in 07 – 08) let go with caution

Alcohol use (dabbled since 07) spot checks started and continue now and then ever since but let go with caution

Failing grades in school (since 07) WE ARE LETTING GO


Cigarette smoking (started in 07, got worse) WE LET GO OF THIS ONE

Lying (since she turned 12 and has gotten worse over time) HAVING PROBLEMS HERE TO

Trust is a big issue!!!

Present boyfriend is also doing drugs.

While we are on week 2, implementing session 1 and studying session 2, we are confused as to what to work on first? We have admitted our mistakes, made amends, are taking responsibility, and have asked her to expect some change AND TO BE PATIENT that we will allow her time to adjust to. We sat down and started to establish; 1) specific rules (some which were in place already) 2) praise and reward for her success and 3) consequences (appropriate grounding w/and w/out privileges for her negative behavior.

Last week we learned through her journal that she was sexually promiscuous, was smoking pot, and minor cutting again. We believe her relationship with boys seem to becoming a pattern. Are we to discipline her for all of this at once, or address them separately, or what? She has no phone as it was taken away because of lack of trust and respect. We didn’t set any limits to this consequence.

We feel that this is way over our heads at times and that this should be dealt with immediately. We are overwhelmed. But we are committed to the program. Frustrated and confused at time.

1. The grounding thing is one thing we are not sure if we should lift or not. She is currently grounded for her grades in school. The grounding we setup was to last until she brought her grades up to C’s. Since then, while reading your suggestions, we are thinking that we should not be involved with school, that she should accept whatever natural consequences she sows. While we have been keeping track of tests and homework, we are backing off due to your suggestions. The decision was made that we needed to see the grades on an actual report card as we were told numerous times that the grades were being brought up and then when we received the report cards and that wasn’t the case at all. Our question, should we lift the grounding anyway? Some of her grades lifted but other have not. She seems to be trying at times but is getting frustrated with us. I don’t blame her for that. What do we do?

My Out-of-Control Daughter

He has refused to do his chores and is pushing my buttons...

I realise Ive been an overindulgent parent to my 14 year old son since the separation with his dad 11 years ago. I am a primary school teacher (quite a stressful job) who has been off sick from work for the past 6 months, I'm due back to work next week.I totally agree that it takes enormous amount of supervision and parenting concerns to keep Conall on track! Conall is both physically and verbally abusive to me. He has ODD and ADHD tendencies and has suffered emotional abuse due to the ongoing fractious relationship between myself and his Dad. Dad has an over-anxious and immature personality and Conall has similar personality traits. I've tried allsorts of strategies to try and make a more stable environment for Conall eg. trying to include Dad in my home in parenting Conall and being as nice as I could to both Dad and Conall to improve my son's behaviour. However I burnt myself out both physically and emotionally. Now I know that it was doomed to failure as it was a "superficial relationship" as it was a strained relationship when the 3 of us spent a period of time together. I suppose I was using Dad to discipline Conall as I was not being successful at parenting Conall on my own. Now thanks to your parenting programme I have begun to feel empowered again and more confident in myself as a parent. I am aware that a weaker joint parenting programme is better than one single strong parenting approach, however as I've tried working with Conall's Dad already and he has undermined my parenting and acts more like Conall's friend than a father I feel I've no choice but to go it alone with your parenting programme? I feel if I inform Dad about this on-line programme he will show Conall what I'm doing, with regard to working the "Out of Control Teen" Programme. Therefore do you think it is better to try to focus on the behaviours in my home with this programme and not mention it to his Dad?

At present Conall is refusing to do a three day grounding as a consequence to leaving the home in the evening time without informing me. He knows he needs to get my permission first before going to his friends house or there will be a grounding consequence. We were getting ready to go to Church to a family anniversary service which he knew was important to attend. When he did'nt return home I went alone to the service. He turned up late and sat at the back of the church. I was annoyed as he had got his friend (who is only 14 years old) to drive him to the church which is 4 mins from our neighbourhood on a minor country road. As you mentioned in your e-book "birds of a feather - flock together". When he returned home I discussed the rule violation with him. He intially lied and said he got a taxi to the church. Then he eventually told me that his friend drove him to the church. I issued a one day grounding, the next day, which he refused to do. As it was Easter Sunday that day and we go annually out to a parade, I gave him the second chance of completing his grounding on Monday the following day which he also refused. I warned him if he ignored the one day grounding I would have to issue a three day grounding. I have restricted him from the usual priveledges - T.V. Computer, ipod, mobile phone. He went to his Dad's house the following two days (where he could escape the consequence in my home)! Now today he is leaving my home and going to friends house (same one who took him to church) without my permission. As he has this week off school (Easter Holidays) he doesn't intend doing the grounding until it suits him. I keep my poker face on and inform him each day that he has his 3 day grounding to begin and that he'll be un-grounded in 3 days. I then leave it (become emotionally detached) and carry on the day as usual (with his priveledges restricted). Three days before Easter he went to a Disco, before the grounding consequence was issued. I know there is a disco on tommorrow night which he wants to go to, and he has made excuses to me that he is staying over at his dads house. I believe he is lying and intends going to the disco and staying over at a friends house. At present dad and I are not on speaking terms and Conall knows I won't be communicating with dad about the disco. He hasn't earned the freedom to go to a second disco over the Easter Holidays and I told him he was not allowed to go - as he is only allowed to one disco during the holiday period. Do I issue another 3 day grounding if he ignores my request and goes on to the disco anyway. This would mean he has a six day grounding to do. I don't want him doing what he likes and running to discos when he pleases! without my permission. He has already gone to a disco that he was not allowed to go to a month ago . He did his 3 day grounding as a consequence to ignoring my request - not to go. This week he has refused to do his chores and is pushing my buttons quite alot, but I just use the deal with it later file and don't provide any negative intensity ( which I would have done in the past). I know this is a long e-mail and I thank you for taking the time to read it as I do need your help as Conall is rebelling quite strongly at present and I want to do the right thing to remain on track!

My Out-of-Control Teen


My son has a very arrogant nature...


I have a 15 yr old boy and he is a lot taller than me, My husband is away a lot. My son has a very arrogant nature "which I just can not stand" and he knows this.

We had a argument a couple of day's ago because I tried to have some fun with him and now he is staying with his grandparent for a couple of day with just make me feel like a dog.

before he went to his grandparents I tried to talk to him & I ask him what was his problem is with me and his reply was 'YOU" YOU ARE MY PROBLEM you are the one that fights with me, dad, and his brother because I am the authority figure in our home he doesn't like it and thinks it should be his father"who he thinks is god"

All the male's in my family do not see the disrespect he has towards the women in my family, because they don't cop it they don't see it.

Example; yesterday before he left I said to him; I hope you talk to your grandfather about this. His reply was, and who's going to help you.

He knows how to floor me and I just become speechless with discuss as to how he can treat me like this, because we have not raised him to be like this.

As his father and I rarely have arguments and his brother and I muck around to the cows come home and rarely argue. I feel at a loss as to why he can just turn on me like he does

I am determined I am not going to pussy foot around him or be walking on egg shells just in case I upset him.

I have purchased your eBook last night and what I have read so far has made me feel a little better.

Thank you,


Not sure how to handle this when he comes home tomorrow!

My Out-of-Control Teen


Boyfriend Problems

I was, unfortunately, stupid and now understand, passive, and allowed her to manipulate me into letting her have an opportunity with this boy (16 years-old). From what our other daughter (18 years old) had told us, this boy had a reputation of drug use, suspension from school, and cheating on other girls. We did discuss this with our 15 year-old and and she either believed he had changed or lied about it to us. Initially, we allowed her to talk to him and then see him a few times a week with another friend present, going to a movie. We talked to his mom, and she invited our daughter to go and have dinner and watch a movie with them. Since then, they have had dates, and she has been to his house. I, being stupid again, trusted his mom to supervise, as she was the one to bring it to my attention that she was upset that she found them one night asleep on the couch together. Obviously, I was upset, mad and disappointed and discussed with my daughter, again, that she was not to be alone with him and asked him where the mother was. SURPRISE, she was upstairs in a different room. No surprise now, we have now found out, from his mother, that they have had sex. The mother came storming over a week and 1/2 ago, while our daughter was at a friend's, looking for the two of them because she could not find her son. We contacted our daughter and she had met up with the boyfriend and we brought them to our house and all of us discussed that this relationship had to end. The mother told us the boyfriend does use drugs, has been through rehab and counseling, and is clinically depressed and obsessed with our daughter and he was sobbing he can't live without her. We have taken away our daughter's cell phone, computer use, and home phone use, so she has been unable to talk to him with us, while we're home together. She has admitted to talking to him a couple of times on her friend's phone. He calls and hangs up when he hears us answer. Our daughter is withdrawn, depressed and wants to be with him, but we are refusing to allow her to be with him. We know we made the mistake for her to be in this relationship and do not want them together.

My Out-of-Control Daughter


Teens and Schizophrenia

My son several years ago was hospitalized with depression and possible schizophrenia. He was treated in town for most of the summer. They moved him out of town for observation and told him he could leave whenever he wanted. when he wanted to leave they told him he couldn't. We were upset and so was he. They finally had to let him go because he told them he would petition the government to get an ombudsman. He was promised that a team would be put together to monitor him. He was on meds but he went off and then back on. He didn't do well in school. This was several years ago. He started this school year off meds and did not do well. He complained about not being able to concentrate. He wanted to quit school and finish up next year. We have been battling . I tend to nag and he resents it. Lately things have got worse. He and I got into a physical confrontation several times. My daughter was visiting here and she was concerned and called the Canadian mental Health Association. He got into an argument with her. She was not going to say goodbye she was so upset. He Stares off into space and sometimes isn't very clear in his speech. He loves to give ambiguous answers. He is studying Reiki and just became a Mormon even though our family isn't religious. Last night he was mediating and left a candle burning. The bed caught on fire and he called the fire department. He managed to put out the fire. I wasn't home. I got a little angry when he said that he would still burn candles but be more careful. I praised him for getting the fire out and said his quick thinking saved the house. I got home a few minutes before the fire dept. came. We aired out the house and vacuumed up the mess. We watch TV together and talked. It went well. I felt close to him. He started to tell me about his racing thoughts but when I asked him about it he didn't elaborate. He said that when he meditates and his mind races he slaps his forehead. He did this several times while we watched TV. this morning I got up and went out to get some food. My wife went to Vancouver to help my daughter with the babies. She will will be back Tuesday. Anyway at 12 noon I went downstairs where he was sleeping on the couch. I said you have guitar lessons to day. He told me to fuck off. I said What!!! He said Fuck off again. I told him not to say that and he basically told my he was going to kick me in the nuts. I had allready called the police on him last week because we got int a fight. Anyway I told him to leave for a half hour and cool down. But this time I was angry and shouting. He said no that he was not going to Guitar but to see the Reiki practitioner and he wouldn't leave untill he felt like it. By this time I was very angry and I told him to leave and I was going to call the police. I did and he left as I was talking to them. I told him previously to go to a half way house They didn't come because he had left. I don't know where he is. I think he has mental problems but he won't admit it. In the last 4 months he has kicked in most of the doors in the house. He seemed to be better behavior wise lately until today. I can't seem to get a hold of my anger. He pushes my buttons and I respond. I made an appointment to see a counselor. I want him at home but if he has emotional problems it isn't good to be in a stressful home. He isn't seeing his old friends lately. He was staying up late and sleeping all day. I put a parental lock on the computer after 11 pm. I really don't know what to do…Were not sure that the schizophrenia diagnosis is accurate. But lately withe the staring and racing thoughts I'm not too sure. when he was medicated he was like a Zombie. He seemed more alert when he was coming off the meds. But now he is spacey. He had a girlfriend but when he told her that he had emotional issues in the past the mother pressured the girl and she broke up with him. At that time was when a lot of the door breaking went on. I need someone to tell me what to do.

My Out-of-Control Teen

I have once again filed another Missing Children’s report...

Well our story is a long one, but we need help. My girlfriend at work found your website, and we are in desperate need of help. Our son has been out of our home for over 1 month. He was skipping classes in school, and getting into trouble. Before Spring Break, I had attended the Parent Teacher Conference at his high school to find out that our son was failing his classes for non-attendance and basically non interest in school. In his defense I had stated that we would get counseling and also a tutor to bring his grades up.. as I was told that all was not lost at that point.

In the past two years we have had some major traumatic experiences which have also affected our son. My father (his grandpa) was very ill in January 2007, and just passed away in January 2009. My younger sister (his aunt) just passed away in November 2008. Also, mother (his Nana) is very ill with just months to live.

It has been very difficult for the entire family, and has also taken it’s toll on Dylan. My parents were Dylan’s primary caregivers up until my father became ill, and they stopped their routine of coming by to see him on a daily basis…. Dylan has not expressed his feelings about this or his feelings about his grandfather’s or his aunt’s deaths. We have had a lot of counseling, over the past year, but since my father passed away, he wont discuss it.

As I mentioned Dylan had been skipping school, and after the parent teacher interview, we had discussed getting a tutor, and also some counseling, he was in agreement. The following day (Friday March 13th) he skipped school, and lied to me and my husband. My husband found out that Dylan had skipped his classes on Friday, and had made arrangements with his school counselor to pick up some home work that he could work on over Spring Break. Dylan basically said no, and I am not going to follow your rules, or go to school. My husband said that he couldn’t live in our home if he wasn’t going to school, as that is basically our only main expectation right now. He left on March 13th, and has not been home since.

We have obtained the address of where he has been living through some of his school friends, but it is not good, pretty much what you would call a Flop House. A place that houses underage teens that are troubled. There is one adult that rents the house ( 20 yrs old) and all the other boys, 5 other are between ages of 15 – 18 yrs old.

Since Dylan has been residing at this place, we have left him alone, but he has broken into our home and robbed us 4 times of food and money. He also did what’s called an “empty envelope” deposit on his account (which I am a joint signer as he is a minor), and it overdrew my account and brought up a red flag as fraudulent transactions. I had a lot of explaining to do at my bank, and I am an employee….

We found out that Dylan hadn’t been at the house for 2 days, and learned that he was hanging out with an undesirable bad ass (Simon), a boy that he used to know a few years ago that we thought had disappeared, as part of our wishes.

I decided to file a Missing Children’s Report with our local police department, as I am very concerned for my son’s well being. I was told by a couple of his friends from school that he had sold his Play Station 3 for “ 3 lines of coke and a 30 sack of weed”. Not too sure of the value of these drugs, but the Play Station value is $400.00. Dylan generally has a good head on his shoulders but he is clearly being influenced by the people that he is living with, and now Simons has reappeared.

We received a call tonight from a Constable that Dylan and Simon had been caught shop lifting at Save-On-Foods Store in Burnaby (for a box of crackers). They called and wanted to know what we wanted to do…. We do not have the appropriate resources to deal with this yet, so they said that they would keep him overnight if he wanted… however, he was at will to leave if he so chose to do so. We then received a call from the Ministry that he had left within about 30 minutes.

I have once again filed another Missing Children’s report. And when they call me once he has been located, I will pick him up. My husband and I need help, as we don’t know where to go from here…..

My Out-of-Control Teen

She and I recognise a lot of what you say relates to to David's behaviour...

Dear Mark

My name is Catherine Quekett - I used to work as an advocate for Mrs Betty Bell, supporting her and her husband through years of great difficulty. Since leaving the Advocacy scheme, I have continued to support her as a friend. Betty is an elderly lady (late 70's) whose daughter was tragically killed in a car accident about 14 years ago. When she died, she left two small children, 2 1/2 and 18 months (Nathan and David). Their father is a Jamaican man who Betty and her husband (Graham) did not trust to bring up in a safe and secure environment. They therefore went to court to get a residency order and have since brought the boys up themselves. The Jamaican father stayed in touch for the first couple of years but has been totally absent from the boys lives since then. David has grown up into a teenager with big problems. He is very much an out of control person. He is 16 now but for many years he has bullied and abused his grandparents and in particular his grandmother. Graham sadly died from cancer nearly 2 years ago.

Social services in Worcestershire have recognised Betty's vulnerability and over the last 5 years David has been to a residential school (which he ran away from on a number of occasions), in a residential childrens' home and various foster families. However he is back at home now and ruling the roost again. Betty is constantly in fear. He marches into her bedroom at night, demanding she cook him food, he drags her by the hair, he punches her, he makes her give him money for drugs and cigarettes. David is constantly bringing up the past, blaming Betty for everything, he is always looking for conflict. His elder brother Nathan tries to mediate and has often saved Betty from worse beatings and serious injury.

I was researching attachment disorder on the internet, and wondering whether David may have it, when I came upon your site. Betty came and read the information on your website too and ordered the book and CDs. She and I recognise a lot of what you say relates to to David's behaviour. She so hopes that what she learns from the material will help her to cope, to change her behaviour and help to change David's.

Of course there is a lot of detail I have not included here - it would be a very long email!! It is already pretty long but its a start.

Thanking you for your excellent work


My Out-of-Control Teen

Out of control daughter...

2 days ago my husband (Jeff) found in my daughter Stephanie’s journal, that she has been smoking pot, having sex with a 17 yr old boy every chance she get’s (in school) she is addicted to cigarettes, and has obviously been lying to us for quite some time now. She has a history of cutting and I suspect she is still cutting. She, her sister and I were abandoned by my second husband(their father) 12 years ago. My 2nd husband of 12 years (could be a pattern with me), dropped out as in, He “has had it” and doesn’t want anything to do with “My kids” and me anymore. He lives here but will not contribute other than financially. My husband and I started reading and applying your program 5 days ago. Since he found out, about her journal and its content, he wants nothing to do with the program. I on the other hand feel it would work with jeff’s help but I am between a rock and hard place. Our marriage has not been good. He does his thing I do mine for the past oh about 12 years. There is little argument in our house. He travels periodically but is a loving father figure. He is uninvolved with the kids most of the time except to watch a movie now and then and correct them when they need corrected. He orders them to do chores and cooks when he can. I am fearful for my daughters life, concerned for my family as a whole and need good family counseling. We carry “Cigna” insurance but very few counselors will accept it in the surrounding area of Mars PA. I am at a lose. She is presently seeing a student counselor every Monday for the past 3 month but she said Steph will not open up about anything else but this boy (outside the fact that they are screwing each other) I will continue reading an applying your program as I need to be more assertive and consistent. I am a mod. indulgent parent style. Jeff is the same but a little less indulgent. We are inconsistent and inappropriate with grounding, ( ground her too long term) We have not confronted her about what was in her journal as of yet. I am for confronting it now but he is not, he wants to have a way he can find out things in the future. Being a cutter, having a journal is very important to her to get things out. I am fearful she will cut again or cut more. Yet, I think we need to deal with this in the light, promptly. I don’t want her to stop writing though. It helps her . I am clueless as to what to do> have no other way of writing. Did I mention Stephanie was arrested for theft this past Jan., apologized, paid her dues and received 24 hours com service as a minor, no record. (Thank God) Maybe not). but she was little sorry because she did it again a month later and received a fine and a 4 hour class on thrift. She hugged me and said she was sorry, that she wouldn’t do it again but now this… What am I going to do? The counselor is inexperienced and Steph isn’t biting. Parents are at odds and desperately need guidance themselves. I feel your program will work but will it work without his support or help? HELP!! I pray 24 /7 . I am wrong to lighten loads for her. She needs to fall on her face but I need support while doing this. Should I put her in boot camp alterative? She needs long term results with short term funds.

My Out-of-Control Daughter


She is defiant, does not listen, she is extremely impulsive...


My name is L__, I m a single parent in desperate need of help for my 14yr out-of control daughter.

She was diagnosed with ADD when she was about 4 years old; however medication was neither the answer nor the route I took. Instead I tried therapy, and art therapy, I also tried family counseling, and school counseling... For the past few years I have tried other methods of coping with my daughters behaviors. She has been transferred from school to school for several years... I have tried Public School, charter schools, and now private school with very little results.

Each school provided counseling for my daughter but her behavior and emotional problems are increasing rapidly.

Academically she is on a 5th grade level, she is unable to complete task and focus... I have tried tutoring, scores program and Sylvan learning center with very little results...

At 13 years old. My daughter has had sex, use coke, attempted suicide several times, gotten arrested, steals...and more

She has been suspended several times and has repeated 4tht & 6th grade... she is failing all her classes.

She is defiant, does not listen, she is extremely impulsive. Cant stop lying, she make up stories that can cause harm to her and to others...

Has the family dynamic contributed to my daughter's behaviors, probably...? I practically raised her on my own... spoiled her and never showed her disappointment at an early age, as a kid if she wanted a lollipop I got her 5-6 lollipops.. She got in trouble at school I punished her but eventually gave in to her whining and mooning... Her dad has been part of her life but very limited. He is a weekend and occasional dad. I know he loves her very much however he has not participated in her upbringing as much as he should because of his own personal issues. He has never attended a parent teacher conference, may have taken her to the doctors once or twice... he will pick her up on weekends but drop her off at his moms house (her grandmother)

I was raised with both my brother and sister but never got the attention I needed from my mother nor my father. At the age of 16 I left my house drop-out of school began to work and practically took care of myself the best way I can, I'm now 32 years old and imp a district visual manager for Bed Bath & Beyond. I've been working for this company for 13 years... my life although some may think is somewhat stable... is far beyond that. My life is not complete.

My daughter needs help, yes she is a teenager but my daughter’s behaviors are escalating. I know the term "it will get worse before it gets better" is something I should think about, however I know in my heart that I need to get her help ASAP... The worse could happen and I guess what I could lose my daughter... threw death (God FORBID) or the system. I need help NOW!

I need to have my daughter evaluated and tested. She has seen several physiatrists who have not diagnosed her nor have given me a treatment Plan. I'm currently taking her to the JEWISH BOARD FOR FAMILY SERVICES, although is helping somewhat don’t see the sense of urgency... Their physiatrist has recommended her to be evaluated at GAILER HOUSE- a diagnostic and testing center located in Staten Island. But unfortunately my daughter needs a referral from either ACS (administration for children services) or Family Court in order to place her in this facility.

I love my daughter with all my heart I sacrifice to provide everything I never had. It kills me spiritually and emotional to see her like this...

Last night, I was brought to the ER for an anxiety attack; I am trying to cope with the stress however I’m running on low fuel. I NEED HELP!! PLEASE!!

Before is too late... PLEASE HELP!

My Out-of-Control Teen


I am at my wits end and feel I tried everything...

I am at my wits end and feel I tried everything. I am in great hopes about this program and am encouraged by it. My specific question is: My son is already grounded from everything for one week (this happened yesterday afternoon before I found your website) because he took his Grammas’ laptop *which he knows he is not allowed to use a laptop- only the desktop in the family area*, went to look at adult sites *which he knows is not acceptable, he has been grounded for this before* and then lied, saying he had no idea where the laptop was when asked (it was missing off of her desk). I gave the consequence but how do I enforce it? He is refusing do his chores - I gave two chores in addition to the grounding 1) to pick up the dog poo in the backyard and 2) to split some firewood. In addition he was only allowed to watch TV from 7 to 8 pm and no telephone or computer for one week.!

Maybe this is too harsh or too weak but it is what I gave and I know from past experience I cant change it because he tries to manipulate me into getting rid of them one at time -- that part of the road I have traveled well and know to stand my ground. Right now he is refusing to pick up the poo unless I let him go to the movie theater. So, what do I do since he refuses to co-operate and do either one of the two chores? He is stomping around the house, slamming doors, throwing things and yelling profanities. I have no consequence that I can think of to give for this disrespect and I can’t force him to do anything. I have told him, "If you choose not to pick up the dog poo then you will have to sit on the couch." He has chosen not to pick up the poo and refuses to sit on the couch - he is going outside, wandering around the house. When he is not on the couch I go find him and tell him to go to the living room. I am doing good at not arguing with him. (after I answer his initial question, my broken record response is: I love you too much to argue about that) but I am at a loss of what to do. Short of manhandling him, how do I get it through that he needs to sit on the couch? That is what he chose by not picking up the poo. Is this an unrealistic consequence? What options do I have? I am so struggling with the fact that he is being so rude, refusing to co-operate and making life miserable for everyone in the house and I have no idea how to respond to him. I feel as though there is nothing I can do. I guess to sum it all up, once you have issued the consequence(s) after the warning and they refuse to accept/co-operate with the consequence.

My Out-of-Control Teen