17 and Out of Control: Parents Fears

"I Can Stop Whenever I Want
But I Just Don’t Want To"""I go out almost every night and get drunk. I’ll come home at 5 a.m. drunk, high. I just don’t care," Courtney says. "I’ve tried every drug but heroin, and I’ve never smoked crack, but I’ve done everything else."

"At this point, there’s nothing I can do about it, unless I restrain her. She just goes," Barbara says.

Barbara and Chris reveal that they're scared for their daughter's life. "I’m afraid she’s going to end up dead," Barbara says.

"I’m afraid she’s just not going to come home," Chris adds. "Courtney is headed for disaster ... I have told Courtney, ‘You’re going to end up dead or in jail.’"

[AD]The teen says she doesn't have a problem. "I can stop whenever I want, but I just don’t want to. I think it’s fun when I’m on drugs," she says. "I don’t really want to stop or change my ways. Maybe I want to be a little less angry, but everything else, I’m good on that. I don’t care."

Chris, a police officer, reveals, “My biggest fear is her not coming home and us not knowing what happened to her."

"That’s what it might have to take for me to learn my lesson,” Courtney says.
Dr. Phil asks the parents, “What’s your theory about why she’s this defiant, this rebellious, this angry, this much maladjusted to society?”

“I believe Courtney was overindulged as a little girl. We gave her a lot,” Barbara says. “She learned early on to kick and scream to get what she wanted.” She notes that she didn’t start becoming more firm until Courtney was in middle school.

“When our fourth child came along, Courtney wasn’t the princess anymore. She wasn’t the only girl in the house,” Chris adds. “Courtney didn’t like sharing the spotlight with another sister.”

“In my view, she’s just throwing a huge, long tantrum and continues to get paid off for it,” Dr. Phil says. “You all cave, right?”

“We compromise,” Chris replies.

“In other words, she’s right. This works,” Dr. Phil points out, noting that Courtney will soon turn 18. “At 18, you no longer have any control; you only have the ability to influence. So the message to parents out there is you better fix this when they’re 4, 5, 9.”

[AD]Chris explains they’ve tried to change Courtney’s behavior, including taking away her cell phone and computer, punishing her, and she is not allowed to get her license. “The only thing she has is a roof over her head,” he says.

Dr. Phil points out to Courtney that her approach isn’t working too well if she doesn’t have all of those things and wants them.

“I’m good where I’m at right now,” she says, rolling her eyes.
"When Courtney was a sophomore, she asked if I would take her to get birth control," Barbara shares on video.

"I was 15 when I first had sex, some scumbag, but, you know, that’s how it always is. I lost my birth control pills. I don’t know where they went, so I stopped taking them," Courtney says.

"Last year, Courtney came to me after a party and asked me for the morning-after pill," Barbara says. "Courtney thought she was pregnant."

[AD]Courtney explains, "I took Ecstasy that night, and I drank two bottles of vodka, and I drank a 24-pack of beer, and I smoked, like, three blunts of marijuana. I was completely trashed." She told her mother that she woke up naked. "Someone said, 'I saw blah blah having sex with you.' I was like, ‘What the *?' … I called my mom completely freaking out. I was like, ‘You need to get me the day-after pill, right now. I think I got raped last night.'" Courtney admits that she was scared. "I never want to be pregnant, because I don’t want to be fat. I don’t like fat people, and I don’t want to be fat and lose my body. I will not be fat, ever, and I will not have some ugly little pregnant belly on me. That’s disgusting."

Dr. Phil shares his theory about Courtney’s behavior.