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Topic : Setting Boundaries

Number of Replies: 344
New Messages This Week: 0
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Created on : Thursday, June 30, 2005, 01:21:13 pm
Author : dataimport
It's important to set healthy boundaries for and with your teen. Share your strategies.

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February 4, 2006, 4:03 am CST

A Stubborn Teen

Dr. Phil,  

My 15 year old daughter is my biggest challenge.  Her dad and I expect her to help with some of the house work:  keep her room neat, fold and put away her clean clothes, clean the kitchen after dinner.  We also expect her to treat us with respect:  talk to us and treat us kindly.  This has not been happening.  We have discussed our expectations in our home and the consequences for not choosing to follow our rules.  However, she chose to play on the computer, talk on her cell phone, play with her ipod, spend the night at a friends house, or watch tv.  So, we took all those things away for one month.   She can only use the computer for homework and research(what it was originally purchased for).  The last 3 weeks have not been easy.  In fact, it has been hell.  Instead of seeing improvement, she has behaved worse.  She now talks ugly to me in front of her friends.  She yells and screams.  She even admitted to misbehaving on purpose just to make us mad.  I really make a conscious effort to wait until I am calm to discipline her.   I don't see our situation improving.  What can we do differently?   

Help, 

Two frustrated parents 

 
February 13, 2006, 4:24 pm CST

You are soooooo right...

Quote From: chloemalt

Looks like a no-win situation and the best thing would be to move on.

Paul,  I'm sorry you have had to endure similiar problems.  I'm happy to say that guy and I are no longer together.  You are exactly right, the kid/parent are enablers of each other and I hope they live happily ever after.  My guy's ex-wife treated him exactly like his daughter treats him now (in fact, I think the daughter mighe even be even better at it) and that is what he is comfortable with.  As long as the daughter is in the house, he will not have a woman. It really was a no-win situation and the two of them will pay the price down the line.  I on the other hand have begun healing to ready myself for hopefully what will be a more healthy relationship from day 1 in my future.  I hung on about 3 yrs too long.  You know, one of Oprah's sayings is "When people show you who they are, BELIEVE THEM!"   This guy has lost the best thing that he will ever have in a woman - ME - and it is HIS LOSS!  Today's Oprah show was a godsend for me in helping me realize more about my self.  Check out the show for 2/13/06 and good luck, I wish you the best 

  

 
February 13, 2006, 5:45 pm CST

I just want to be heard...

I just want to say what I'm going to say and hopefully be heard.  I have tried getting help for this in many different avenues and I'm at a loss.  I'm 36; I have a boy 17 and a girl 15.  I am married for the 2nd time to a great husband but with him comes a 5 yr old step daughter.  I was a preacher’s daughter growing up, and I hear all the time......."Oooooo you’re a preachers daughter, we know how they act".  Tired of that one.  When I was 16 I met a boy who was everything my parents would hate.  I ran away from home when I was 17, dropping out of school and right after I turned 18 I was pregnant with my first child.  After telling my dad he insisted we get married.  3 months later we were married.  2 yrs later we had our 2nd child and remained married for almost 11 years.  Within that marriage there was a lot of abuse, physically and mentally.  At about 9 yrs of marriage, after I had cheated on him several times, I found out about him cheating on me (Big Surprise).  I of course instantly wanted him back and when it took almost 3 months to fully get him back after going through hell and back, he was finally mine again (whooppeeee!).  I devoted my life to him totally.  I shut out the kids.....to gain him back of course....and shut out friends and family.  Instead of going to church I would drop the kids off and spend the day with him going to bars, drinking...giving him money for drugs, whatever it took.  I did that for a year.  Lo and Behold, he left me for another woman almost a year to the day.  This time I didn't want him back, didn't take him back....Thank God I was the financial provider so I didn't hurt financially in anyway.  But I hurt, I hurt really bad.  I didn't think I would make it; I just wanted to lie down and die.  Looking back on it, I wonder why....but when you are in those situations you don't see any other way.  I remained single for about 4 yrs.  A lot of partying, drinking and going out leaving my kids so that I could have the time of my life being single. HA HA!! Seems kind of crazy now when I hated it so much when my ex husband was doing that to me all of the time… Meanwhile I had become addicted to chat online and slowly my outside world became an inside world of online all the time.  But chat is where I met my current husband (go figure) but oddly enough I know that God knew that was the only place I would find someone who would get me out of there and realize who I was leaving behind by being there....my kids.  After meeting him it was love at first sight and we clicked like you wouldn't believe.  He was separated, getting a divorce and had joint custody of his daughter with his ex wife.  My kids and I moved 600 miles to be with him and after almost 6 months we moved in with him.  Everything was great...DUN Dun dun (theatrical music) His ex wife is PSYCHO (go figure again) She tried to kill herself, ditched her kid and has been a major pain in our side ever since.  We have full custody of the child but the judge gave her visitation in another state after knowing the mother was put in a mental hospital, ditched the kid for over a year and has still never lived on her own since they divorced.  She has always lived with boyfriends or her grandmother.  His daughter calls me mommy, because she was only 2 when her mom left and that's all she knows.  But the mother insists on making things difficult because she doesn't like that the 5 yr old calls me mommy.  Honestly, I wish the mother was normal so that she could help take care of her.  My kids are almost grown and now I am raising a child who doesn't want to be with me in the first place.  In a weird way (sounds weird when I say it anyways....) I feel like I am living with the other woman.  When my husband spends time with her and does things with her then I feel left out, I feel like I'm sharing my time with him and her.  I know it's selfish and I know that it's wrong because she's only 5 but you have to realize that I lived with the "other" woman in my first marriage when it took my first husband almost 3 months to decide whether he wanted her or me...which meant phone calls, and him living between her house and mine.  Also it meant that one night he drove me down to a town that was 2 1/2 hours away to finally tell her goodbye "face to face" and he ended up leaving me in a restaurant with no money and only my cell phone for 9 hours before he decided to come back.  This was from 9 at night to 6 in the morning.  Thank God it was an all night restaurant.  Anyways, I'm guessing this is why I'm having the "other woman" issues with my step daughter, but honestly I don't want to be around her and I don't want to raise her.  My husband is not going to give her to the Psycho mother (and I don’t expect him to) and I don't know how long he is going to put up with me and my craziness.  I don't know how to deal with this situation.  I'm happy when it's my husband and my 2 kids but when my step daughter is around, I'm not happy.  I feel like I need to start becoming prepared to be left again….Everyone tells me that my husband would never leave me, that he loves me to much, but I know how hard it would be for me to stay if my husband didn’t want to take care of my two kids.  I have been in this little girls life for almost 4 years now, I’m not saying that it has always been like this and that I have always felt this way.  I have tried; I have tried so hard to be her mother and to be there for her.  I just feel disrespected in so many ways and I feel like she doesn’t want me.  I know a child always wants their natural parent, I know this because I have 2 children of my own who want their real dad.  I guess I just feel cheated because I have been there ever since she can remember and her mom hasn’t.  She waltzes in and out of her life when she wants and the child loves her more and would rather be with her.  I should stop here….I have written a lot.  I just need someone to hear me, someone to listen and maybe someone to say….”I feel the same way”.  It is so hard……I just want to be heard. 

 
February 14, 2006, 4:47 am CST

Just be patient and keep trying

Quote From: anon81974

 Why don't you just concentrate on raising your own children and start dating when the youngest turns eighteen.  That way you are in total control of what goes on in your home and how it affects your children.  It will be the safest place for your kids to be.  And the added bonus will be that they won't have to compete for your love with your fiancee or her kids.
You have three kids.... it's not ALL about YOU anymore.
 Just a thought...

Hello :) I am in much the same situation as you are...except for the fighting. My fiances girls are 22, 17. 14 and I have a son that is 18. When we first moved in together it was hard because his ex girlfriend (the one before me) was very mean to his girls to the point they wouldnt even visit their dad if she was there. As well as his ex wife is always meddeling in our affairs.  So it took alot of time and patience and understanding on my part to get them to realize that I wasnt here to steal their dad away from them. And I am proud to say we all get along great now. Im not saying that we dont have our off days but for the most part everything is good. Maybe talk to your fiance and figure out if their is some underlying issues with the 18 year old that maybe you dont understand. Not all kids are raised the same way, and even though she is 18 she may still feel like if she has a good realationship with you it will somehow be disrespectful to her dad. Kids are very territorial and I feel like if you just dont push them they will come around in their own time.  

As far as the reply about "Its not all about you anymore". Just ignore it. Just because you have your own grown up relationship does NOT mean that you are not a good father! 

Just keep trying and good luck!!!! 

  

 
February 14, 2006, 8:24 am CST

worried mother..

i am the mother of an 11 year old daughter..the problem i have is that my daughter has liked this boy since last year and he has her too..and now they love each other..i have had people tell me they dont know what love is well i dont agree with them they know how they feel and if they say they love each other then they do..but the problem is that he listens to his so called friends on who he should date..they are trouble..if hadnt been for a lie that his one friend told him last year him and my daughter would still be dateing today..he says he cant be wtih my daughter right now but he wants her back..but then he goes out with other girls and it has really hurt my daughter she feels betrayed and hurt and her heart is broken because she dont like seeing him with other girls..you see he dont want her with anyone else but he can go out with whom ever he wants to..i have told her she needs to tell him how she feels and how he has hurt hert her but i just cant seem to get her to do it...i have told her whats good for the goose is good for the gander..i told her maybe if he seen her with someone else that maybe he would see how it feels...right now he is going out with a girl he doesnt even like beacause his freinds aggrovated him until he said he would...please give me some advice on how to deal wtih this..
 
February 14, 2006, 7:27 pm CST

true love at 11 years old

Quote From: angels1822

i am the mother of an 11 year old daughter..the problem i have is that my daughter has liked this boy since last year and he has her too..and now they love each other..i have had people tell me they dont know what love is well i dont agree with them they know how they feel and if they say they love each other then they do..but the problem is that he listens to his so called friends on who he should date..they are trouble..if hadnt been for a lie that his one friend told him last year him and my daughter would still be dateing today..he says he cant be wtih my daughter right now but he wants her back..but then he goes out with other girls and it has really hurt my daughter she feels betrayed and hurt and her heart is broken because she dont like seeing him with other girls..you see he dont want her with anyone else but he can go out with whom ever he wants to..i have told her she needs to tell him how she feels and how he has hurt hert her but i just cant seem to get her to do it...i have told her whats good for the goose is good for the gander..i told her maybe if he seen her with someone else that maybe he would see how it feels...right now he is going out with a girl he doesnt even like beacause his freinds aggrovated him until he said he would...please give me some advice on how to deal wtih this..

I'm sorry but I disagree with you 100%! I can't believe that your daughter is only 11 years old and you are encouraging her to wrap her self esteem and her feelings of self worth up in a boy who is just as immature as she is at this age. He is playing games with her because he can, pure and simple- not because he has some kind of tortured love for her. He is an immature kid, doing what seems fun in the moment, and you are encouraging your own daughter to be his victim!  

And so you are urging her to go out with other boys to make him jealous? that is just sick! You need to get a life of your own.  

Truly, if you want to guide your daughter to be a healthy and functioning young woman, you've got to help her find other interests in life. Assist her and encourage her to find activities to do that she is good at, and that will boost her self esteem. The better she feels about herself, the more respect she will demand from others. I think that allowing an 11 year old to date and "be in love" is twisted, but I'm sure that you really do love your daughter and that you really do want the best for her, otherwise you wouldn't have posted here- so please do the best by her and drop the issue of boys for now.. or atleast stop encouraging her to have her life revolve around a boy who is an a$*, and who treats her with no respect. Thats not love!!! That is sick obsession. 

 
February 15, 2006, 7:32 am CST

Setting Boundaries

Quote From: jenoc99

I'm sorry but I disagree with you 100%! I can't believe that your daughter is only 11 years old and you are encouraging her to wrap her self esteem and her feelings of self worth up in a boy who is just as immature as she is at this age. He is playing games with her because he can, pure and simple- not because he has some kind of tortured love for her. He is an immature kid, doing what seems fun in the moment, and you are encouraging your own daughter to be his victim!  

And so you are urging her to go out with other boys to make him jealous? that is just sick! You need to get a life of your own.  

Truly, if you want to guide your daughter to be a healthy and functioning young woman, you've got to help her find other interests in life. Assist her and encourage her to find activities to do that she is good at, and that will boost her self esteem. The better she feels about herself, the more respect she will demand from others. I think that allowing an 11 year old to date and "be in love" is twisted, but I'm sure that you really do love your daughter and that you really do want the best for her, otherwise you wouldn't have posted here- so please do the best by her and drop the issue of boys for now.. or atleast stop encouraging her to have her life revolve around a boy who is an a$*, and who treats her with no respect. Thats not love!!! That is sick obsession. 

well Jenoc99  i am so sorry you  disagree with me..first of all my daughter is not inmature for her age..she is very mature and she has alot of  self confidence in herself..second the boy she likes isnt inmature either..i dont encourage her and i dont discourage her either..i am not gonna tell my daughter who to like/love or who not to like/love thats her choice not mine i have raised her right and she knows right from wrong so i am not worried at all..third his mother and i were best friends and now she is gone she died back in the summer...but she has told me plenty of times how he feels about my daughter and it  doesnt bother me a bit he is a wonderful boy and has alot of respect for my daughter..i dont encourage my daughter to go out with anyone to make him jealous...she has been asked out plenty of times but she has said no to them all because she only loves this one boy..my daughter is not BOY CRAZY and that makes me very proud...i am a christian and i have always prayed that GOD would send my daughter the right boy to be in her life and i know without a doubt that he has..i DONT QUESTION GOD and what he does..he has a purpose and plan for everybody in life..my husband and arent gonna tell our daughter that she doesnt know how she feels we are not that kind of parents..like my husband says she knows how she feels and she knows what her heart is telling her..besides it really doesnt matter what anyone else thinks anyway it only matters what we think and what GOD IN HEAVEN KNOWS...i dont encourage but i dont discourage either..and another thing he isnt an a$* like you said..you shouldnt call people names you dont even know it isnt very nice...but thanks for your input..
 
February 17, 2006, 8:52 am CST

auto parenting

Well, we fell in to auto parenting.  Now, I understand why this is so bad.  I hope every parent that  watches your show listens to what your saying.  You can not buy your children everything they want put them in their rooms and then as a parent do what you want!  It will not work, and then blame the child when they start to act up in school, grades drop, attitudes change. 

You must be plugged in all the time.  We bought your cd's put your rules into effect, and then forgot one thing, why???  Why all of the sudden is my room not good enough, why is my dad getting upset with me?   

You must go thru the whole set of info, and take part of the blame, as a parent.  You must say to your children I am sorry.  I  did get you all of those things thinking that would make you happy, and we as parents could do what we wanted.  NO!!! 

You must look at them and say, we made bad choices, so it caused you to make bad choices, this is why we changed the rules, and now we are making special time for you.  We are listening to you, and we are here for you.  I now understand what you mean by dropping a child off to a counslor and saying fix him or her!!   

Now, due to our co parenting with ex's, and great friends at that, we are going to fix this, we are going full circle, and we are going to pay attn.  I hope every parent watched Oprah with the 13 year old on the other day.  I hope every parent stops trying to out do the other parents, and buy their kids love, and just spends time with them!   

My husband thinks maybe we are to late, I am sure with being friends with his ex and we are all one big family that we will make this work.  But I hope you can get thru to parents to stop auto parenting, and start with their family first.  You don't need a hugh home, brand new cars. just trying to top your neighbor, every game that comes out, and every pair of jeans, shoes, that say a name, kids need love and attn.  Parents need to step up.  We are stepping up, all of us, we have put the contract into effect, we are not going to explain and let our child express their thoughts, and go from that point on!  We are going to let them know that as a family we made mistakes, and now going forward we want to be involved! 

 
February 17, 2006, 12:42 pm CST

Setting Boundaries

Quote From: angels1822

well Jenoc99  i am so sorry you  disagree with me..first of all my daughter is not inmature for her age..she is very mature and she has alot of  self confidence in herself..second the boy she likes isnt inmature either..i dont encourage her and i dont discourage her either..i am not gonna tell my daughter who to like/love or who not to like/love thats her choice not mine i have raised her right and she knows right from wrong so i am not worried at all..third his mother and i were best friends and now she is gone she died back in the summer...but she has told me plenty of times how he feels about my daughter and it  doesnt bother me a bit he is a wonderful boy and has alot of respect for my daughter..i dont encourage my daughter to go out with anyone to make him jealous...she has been asked out plenty of times but she has said no to them all because she only loves this one boy..my daughter is not BOY CRAZY and that makes me very proud...i am a christian and i have always prayed that GOD would send my daughter the right boy to be in her life and i know without a doubt that he has..i DONT QUESTION GOD and what he does..he has a purpose and plan for everybody in life..my husband and arent gonna tell our daughter that she doesnt know how she feels we are not that kind of parents..like my husband says she knows how she feels and she knows what her heart is telling her..besides it really doesnt matter what anyone else thinks anyway it only matters what we think and what GOD IN HEAVEN KNOWS...i dont encourage but i dont discourage either..and another thing he isnt an a$* like you said..you shouldnt call people names you dont even know it isnt very nice...but thanks for your input..
I have an 12 year old girl and she likes some boy at school.  She is overly mature for her age.  BUT there is no way, no how, she loves anyone.  She may think she does, but she has no idea. My daughter is not allowed to date?  She sees her friends "boys and girls" at school and that is it.  She is too young to think that she needs to date and be asked out by boys.  Girls and boys need to have crushes, no doubt, that is fun and cute at that age and we all did it.  But talking about dating and stuff like that is just simply the most ridiculous thing I have ever heard of. 
 
February 17, 2006, 7:32 pm CST

Setting Boundaries

Quote From: angels1822

well Jenoc99  i am so sorry you  disagree with me..first of all my daughter is not inmature for her age..she is very mature and she has alot of  self confidence in herself..second the boy she likes isnt inmature either..i dont encourage her and i dont discourage her either..i am not gonna tell my daughter who to like/love or who not to like/love thats her choice not mine i have raised her right and she knows right from wrong so i am not worried at all..third his mother and i were best friends and now she is gone she died back in the summer...but she has told me plenty of times how he feels about my daughter and it  doesnt bother me a bit he is a wonderful boy and has alot of respect for my daughter..i dont encourage my daughter to go out with anyone to make him jealous...she has been asked out plenty of times but she has said no to them all because she only loves this one boy..my daughter is not BOY CRAZY and that makes me very proud...i am a christian and i have always prayed that GOD would send my daughter the right boy to be in her life and i know without a doubt that he has..i DONT QUESTION GOD and what he does..he has a purpose and plan for everybody in life..my husband and arent gonna tell our daughter that she doesnt know how she feels we are not that kind of parents..like my husband says she knows how she feels and she knows what her heart is telling her..besides it really doesnt matter what anyone else thinks anyway it only matters what we think and what GOD IN HEAVEN KNOWS...i dont encourage but i dont discourage either..and another thing he isnt an a$* like you said..you shouldnt call people names you dont even know it isnt very nice...but thanks for your input..

"I don't encourage my daughter to go out with anyone to make him jealous.." is what you say above, but in your very first post, you said this: 

..i have told her she needs to tell him how she feels and how he has hurt hert her but i just cant seem to get her to do it...i have told her whats good for the goose is good for the gander..i told her maybe if he seen her with someone else that maybe he would see how it feels...right now he is going out with a girl he doesnt even like beacause his freinds aggrovated him until he said he would...please give me some advice on how to deal wtih this.. 

Going on this info is also why I said the boy she "loves" sounds immature. He sounds immature because at his age, I'm sure he is. At 11 years old, he probably isn't interested in settling down.  

If you don't question God, then why ask for advice on the Dr. Phil web site and then get upset? I'm only going on the information that you posted, I don't know anything else, but it sounds like I hit a sore spot?  

 
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