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Topic : Single Parenting

Number of Replies: 470
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Last Reply On:
Created on : Thursday, June 30, 2005, 12:46:38 pm
Author : dataimport
A family doesn't always include a mom and a dad. If you are raising children alone, get support from people who understand here.

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September 22, 2007, 4:13 pm CDT

Holding the line

Quote From: daisy4all

Well, today has been a month since my 21 year old daughter left home. After seven years of lies  and manipulation I give her a choice. She either live by the rules or do it some where else. She choose the latter. I paid for her university education but she would attend one of four classes. She make sure I have no access to info. nor  her performance. Since she left we had no contact , I know she is with friends.  Today she message me on MSN about getting back in school. I did not respond cause she had done this before to get my attention.  Please advise me how to deal with this situation. She knows how much I want her to continue her education.      

Hi -

Sorry no one else has replied to you yet - I hope you're still looking at the posts. I'm both a single parent as well as a professor and a university administrator whose job it is to coordinate all the academic support services to students (tutoring, etc.). Between the two, I feel pretty confident in my ability to respond to your question.  In my experience, students who do not want their parents to know how poorly they're doing are the same ones that refuse to sign the "parent contact" forms (essentially the same everywhere in regard to FERPA privacy regulations).  The students who are doing well don't usually have an incentive to withhold information from parents (although occasionally they may have good reason). It sounds like your daughter is using your deep desire for her to have an education against you, through emotional blackmail. Even if you do cave in and pay for it, she probably won't be successful, anyway! She needs to value her education enough to be willing to do whatever is necessary to get there and to make it work. It sure doesn't sound to me like she's there, if she's once again wanting you to bail her out  - but all on her terms!  She'll likely do the same thing in her coursework that she's doing to you (in my experience, immaturity, blaming, and disowning personal responsibility are the most common reasons for college failure).  There are all kinds of other reasons to hold the line as well:

1. She's 21. It's time!

2. If she has to work for it - take one or two classes at a time, and work to pay the tuition - she'll value it more and be much less inclined to blow it off. My best students are often these.

3. You paid for it once. That's all the parent-contract says we're in it for, if even that! She chose not to take advantage of it when she had it. Decisions have consequences, and she's feeling hers.

 

Finally, the irony here is that if you pay for her to go back to school in order to help her continue her education, which you so badly want, there's a good chance the opposite will occur. However, if you refuse, and she eventually comes to it on her own, there's a good chance that she'll actually get an education, and you'll both get what you want. Strange, eh?

 

As a single mom I know really, really well the pull that my son can put on me, and how hard it can be to hold the line (i.e., no one is there to back me up, and given that we're very close - closer than most traditional families since it's just he and I  - saying no to him can be very, very hard - and no less important!). So here's your back-up from me, a fellow single parent: NO! No, it is NOT in her best interest to rescue her again!

Good luck, mom, and hold that line!

 
October 9, 2007, 8:05 am CDT

WILL WE MAKE IT ???????????

OH BOY, THE STUFF YOUR MOTHER NEVER TOLD YOU ABOUT KIDS. MY DAUGHTER AND I HAVE ALWAYS BEEN CLOSE.BUT RECENTLY WE DO NOTHING BUT DISAGREE .. ITS STARTING TO AFFECT THE ENTIRE HOUSE. AT 13 SHE IS VERY WITH DRAWN AND EMOTIONAL. AFTER TAKING THE ADVICE OF MY LONG TIME FRIEND AND MOTHER OF GIRLS I GAVE HER A LITTLE SPACE BUT THAT HAS ONLY MADE IT WORSE ,, 2 WEEKS AGO I CAUGHT HER SMOKING????????? AND I ALSO CAUGHT HER SNEAKING OUT , SHES ONLY 13 . IM SO SCARED SHES GOING DOWN THE WRONG ROAD,, BUT SHE REFUSES TO TAKE MY ADVICE ABOUT ANY THING , I SAY BLACK SHE SAYS WHITE , WHAT SHOULD I DO  IM SO CONFUSED  SOME ONE HELP ME .. I FEEL LIKE  I AM LOSING HER.
 
October 13, 2007, 8:41 am CDT

Daughter driving me mad

I am a single mother of two. My daughter is 3 1/2 and my son is 9 months. My problem is with my daughter. I CANNOT control her at all.  She doesn't listen, does things though I tell her no repeatedly, is loud, mouthy, and completly wild.  I have tried timeouts, taking things away, spankings, and nothing at all works.  I understand she is young, but I see other kids her age that listen a LOT more than she does.  I am confused as where to go from here...I know she doesnt have any problems, she has been checked. I am just exhausted and need advice on how to handle her.
 
October 13, 2007, 8:52 am CDT

Single Parenting

Quote From: blubutterfly

My 9 yr olds father does not want a relationship with her anymore since he remarried. He and his new wife did swear her to keeping 'bad' secrets for them regarding new wifes drug use in their home and for a couple of months she kept the secret and she felt so relieved when she finally told me everything after I had a reason to question her. Her father had even sat back and watched his new wife slap our daughter in the face and did not say or do anything. New wife had even shot finger at our 9 yr old child in hallway outside of courtroom this past March 2007 ! Judge court ordered childs father and new wife to family counseling with child and I but they refuse to go. I could personally care less if those 2 were dead as I have a really deep hate for each of them for ALL they've put my child through--(being a true parent: )

but, how do I make sure my child really knows none of this was her fault ?

I do talk with her about it from time to time because I know she does love her dad but she also knows he doesn't want anything else to do with her anymore and I don't want her to feel guilty for "telling the secrets".
As it stands now, by court order, her dad is not allowed any contact with her until counseling is completed and CPS has sent a letter acknowledging abuse/neglect...but I'm worried about her self confidence. 
Your ex is obviously a sick person to let this go on with his children and to dump his children. There is not much you can do but remind your daughter that you love her and she has done nothing wrong. Also never say anything bad about her father ever. Remind her her father still loves her and that this is NOT her fault. Tell her that her father is going through somethings or whatever you think is appropriate.  Make her feel loved and special everyday so that she doesn't feel alone.
 
October 16, 2007, 10:54 am CDT

teenager problem

I have a 16-yr.-old who wants to return to her dad's home in another state. He is a poor influence on her. He is anti-social, he travels for his job, is in poor health, & has always treated her more like a boy (doesn't encourage her in music or to dress up & go to parties, etc.)  She has used friends she misses, dad's poor health, guilt, and now better clubs to join at the school in his town to convince me to let her go.  I know she does not belong there. There is no family near him. In fact, he is also anti-family, critical of other people.  My daughter has many of his traits, but she has shown some improvements.  However, it just goes back-and-forth. She seldom discusses this issue; instead, she'll email or text msg. me.  Her father does not help; he only tells her both he and I have to agree in order for him to let her move in with him.  I have talked to counselors.  I am considering a family counselor for she and I.  Any suggestions or advice from anyone who may have been in similar situation would be appreciated.
 
November 9, 2007, 10:45 am CST

single parent

My name is jennifer i am a single mom of 4 girls and well i ve tried to fill in the gaps of there lives because there dad is not there for them  but it seems like i never do enough for them especially for my oldest this morning she wouldnt get up off the floor after she threw a tantrum that she didnt have any pants to wear which of course she did but she didnt like them so she wasnt giong to wear them. well she was late to school and she yelled at me that i hated her that i didnt want her around anymore i have taken all her privleges away her tv her mp3 player that worked in the begining but now i had to call the local police cuz she was threatning to call them on me . I dont know what to do she is a good kid she s just giong thru alot of things right now and her dad is part of her anger and dissappoint i ve tried to talk to him about his girls but he doesnt really care anymore i really want to help my girls i dont want them to fail like i did i had a terrible upbringing and so far i have not made the same mistakes please help
 
November 15, 2007, 7:57 pm CST

Coming Unfrazzeled

I am a single mother of three beautiful miracles. Their father and I divorced after 7 years of marriage and I have sole physical custody. Due to verbal and physical abuse they do not see their father very often and when they do see him it is supervised. They have seen their father once in the last year due to the fact that the girls and I moved two states away.

Two of my three children have disabilities. My oldest (14) has PTSD, depression, medical issues (Arthralgia, migraines, psoriasis) and learning disabilities and my 10 year old has mood disorder, dyslexia and a heart deformity. Due to these issues life at home is needless to say, not at all boring. Our days are filled with medical appointments, school meetings, managing homework and anger outbursts.

Spending one on one time with each child is not an option, on most days or even most weeks. With my 10 yr olds high need for structure, even a simple doctors appointment throws her for a loop.

One year ago I made the choice to move, due to finding out that my oldest was being sexually abuse and life for the next 5 months was pure hell. We were homeless for 4 1/2 months while looking for a place to live. We finally found a place and have been adjusting to "city" life for the last 8 months and getting settled in with new schools and doctors.

With all this said does anyone have an ideas for a frazzled mother? Any suggestions for helping a child with a mood disorder adjust to a new life? Any ideas for a mother that doesn't have enough time for one on one time? Any suggestions as to where to find some sanity?

 
December 2, 2007, 2:36 pm CST

changed

well I'll start by saying my ex hurt me alot and he is still doing it. He left when I was pregnant, found out my mom had cancer, and it was two weeks before christmas. He later moved in 3 months later to only do it again after saying when he came home it was for good. So he left two years ago for the woman he cheated with. After she didn't want anything to do with him he still didn't come back but I was hurt and still loved him. we started calling each other and sleeping together. It has been going on since and he now has a different woman whom he is living with. Just this past week he didn't try to kiss me or anything and has been talking differently. He went to meet her mom this weekend and I think he was fooling around until he knew for sure that this was going to work out with his gf. we are still seperated and not divorced.

He needed money so I helped him out and gave him 1000 dollars. He said he needed it for brakes and that was (WED) halloween night and the cheque I wrote him didn't come out until saturday.  I know I shouldn't care what he does but he knows I have feelings for him...not sure why still. Then today we were disagreeing about the kids having a dog and I didn't want it in the home. Hes not here and it should go to his place. I keep wondering what he used the money for and if it really was for brakes? I am confused as why he would start sleeping with me just after thanksgiving....the thursday and then this  weekend he didn't even try. I know you people reading this might think it is strange but I never really got over him but now I am starting to think something is up. What do you think?

 
January 22, 2008, 12:30 pm CST

Is it worth it????

I need some advise here, I have been a relationship with someone for the past 3 years. We live toghether and have since we met. I have 2 beautiful, strong children. Their father and I divorced about 5 years ago, he took off, started a new family and we rarely hear from him. My current boyfriend has taken over the role of dad. But he is like having another child. Very self centered. Before he came along I was doing fine. I was adjusting to being a single parent, and trying to keep our heads above water. But I had been promoted with in my company, so I was able to provide for my family without the help of my ex-husband. He (the boyfriend, we will call him "Joe") came along when I thought I was ready to start another relationship. He was a salesman, made good money, attractive, and was nice. Joe is a little younger than me, never been married and doesnt have any children of his own. On our second or third date I asked him to come over for dinner and a movie, I explained to him that prior to 9pm my children were awake. I had made it a rule in my house that men were not allowed to be seen, I called them my "pm boyfriends". and if I offered for them to come over when the kids were awake, it was something special. Well, I thought that Joe would decline, come over after bedtime, he didnt. He said that he would be there about 7 and would bring dinner. I was so happy at the time. I never thought that someone like him would want to be apart of my family. Well, he showed up on time with dinner, and never left.

We have been thru our ups and downs over the past couple of years, and even though we have tried to make it work, it never does. Before him, I had never-ever fought with someone in front of my children. It was a standing rule in our home. Alot of things have changed. Things that prior to Joe, my children and I enjoyed, he no longer allowed a family bed, and my children would get into trouble with him if they tried to come cuddle with me. He began locking my bedroom door if he was in there, to keep the kids out. I tried to tell him that it made me very uncomfortable, I saw the door as a barrier from them. He didnt seem to care, it was what he wanted to do. He even posted rules on the locked door for the children to abide by. And set times when they were allowed to knock, or ask a question.

This is how he was brought up. I on the other hand was not. We had an open door policy when I was growing up. I am also a child of a single mom, she is and always be my "soft place to land". His family was large, he is one of five, and his parents have been married for almost 30 years. They fought in front of their kids.

Well, to make a long, long story short. We split last year for a while, due to his emotional abusiveness. I had to move away from where we live and go back to my home town, he obsessed about being with me. He finally gave up, and got healthy. His whole personality changed back to the person I met. Things went well for a while, and when the winter hit, it went back to the way it was when it was really bad. We had agreed not to live together when I came back, but right when I got my house, he made up some excuse to his room mates and moved out. And in with me! We fight all the time, and he fights with me infront of the kids, he doesnt care when I tell him that I'm done fighting infront of them, and if he wants to continue the conversation we need to go away from them. This has taken a tole on them, I have noticed that since Joe has been here, that my children fight with eachother, and they sound just like us. Joe cuts me down, calls me names and attacks my person when we fight. My kids are starting to do the same thing. My son who is 5, has started showing his anger by tightening up, he wont drop an issue, even if its not worth fighting about. Joe does this. My daughter, who is 8, makes excuses for her actions instead of owning them. She yells at her brother, and most of the time provokes the fights. They both make mountains out of mole hills. Joe does all of this.

Now let me say that the only reason he is still around is because when my ex husband left, my daughter had huge seperation issues. It was hard on all of us to deal with that. But after months of play theropy we got the issues undercontrol. Now, my son is attached to Joe, and I worry that we will have the same issues with him.

I dont want to be with this man anymore, I dont want my children to deal with this. But I know that if I call it quites he will make it very hard on us. He has said that he cant be in their lives if he's not with me. I have had issues with that in the past. But, I dont anymore. I dont love him, I never have. But I dont want to hurt my children by kicking him out. What do I do??? Is it worth it for them to have a "father" around even if he is toxic to all of us? When they look back on my decision will they say, "I hate her for leaving him" or " I hate her for staying, and subjecting us to him"??????

SOMEONE WITH SOME INSIGHT, PLEASE HELP!!

 
March 7, 2008, 10:28 am CST

help!!!

Hi::::

 

I'm a grandma who has a daughter that is a single parent raising 3 children on her own and her oldest one who is now 6 is having alot of serious behaviour issues, and I'm hoping someone out there can help with some advice... He will do whatevr it takes to break things, ruin things or rip or paint on or scribble with colors or whatever he can find to color with. He will also take an object and try to destroy the walls with making holes and things..... She has been separated now for over 3 years and it just seems like the more you try and talk to him about his behaviour the worse he gets. He is definately demanding her attention, but in a bad way. I'm not saying my grandson is bad, because he isn't...he is just making bad choices. Also, he will do whatever he can to get the other 2 children in trouble and they take the blame for things he's doing instead. Please if there is anyone out there that can help with some advice or something I sure would appreciate it alot... Thank you in advance...

 

Nana in Canada

 
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