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What a mess

Lndsy747's picture

My SO and I have been together for 10 years he has a daughter that just turned 16 a month ago. There's never been a visitation agreement and her mom is a big manipulator which had lead to an on and off relationship for most of her life. She decided that she no longer wanted a relationship with him about 2 years ago and her mom backed her on the decision.

She contacted him in November saying that her mom was crazy and she wanted to run away and live with us because her mom yells at her all the time and had hit her in one of their altercations and that she's been really depressed. Her mom said no to the move but we've been seeing her about one weekend a month since. Then at the start of summer things got worse and her mom told her she couldn't deal with her anymore and that she needed to spend the summer with us so she could get a break. Everything was going well and she kept on asking if she could live with us. Then when cleaning out her room her mom found condoms and alcohol so we started keeping a better eye on her even though she said it was old and she didn't do that stuff anymore. Last week we found weed in her backpack. Her dad talked to her about it for a few minutes saying that he doesn't understand how she could be so stupid but it was late at night so he said they'd discuss it in the morning. The next day everything was ok between them and she went to spend a few days with Mom. We look through her phone and find out she's extremely promiscuous, smoking and drinking regularly and has talked to her friends about suicide several times over the past 6 months. Her mom works nights so she has no idea that all this was going on.

On the way back to our place she told her mom that she took 9 Prozac the night her dad called her stupid trying to commit suicide. Now her mom has her in the hospital for intensive therapy for the week and his daughter doesn't want to see him. Her mom and the therapist are saying that my SO is emotionally abusive and are recommending that he doesn't visit and feel like it's his fault. We're both in shock! Need advice on how you would handle this.

SteppedOut's picture

Me? I'd cut all contact until (if*) she ever grew up. No more letting her come running when her and mommy were arguing.

Lndsy747's picture

That's the only solution I really see available too. I have a good relationship with her overall when she's over and I worry that her mom is planting the blame on us and not addressing the actual issue which may lead to another attempt. I guess there's not much we can really do at this point though.

Harry's picture

She is playing both of you.  Pitting one against then other.  Do you think !!!  That she it telling her mother the same story names change as she is telling you.  You both BM and BF are giving her a break because she has it hard with whomever she living. So she does not get punish for anything and has her own way 

Lndsy747's picture

That's definitely out opinion as well we immediately questioned if she even took the pills or was just coming up with an excuse but after seeing how bad her behaviour has really been and all the suicide talk I don't even know any more.

2Tired4Drama's picture

Does BM have full legal custody?  Is there any other adult in the household?

 I find it hard to understand how an adult who works nights has been granted custody of a minor.   No wonder the girl has been going off the track, if there is no adult who is keeping an eye on her nights.

I would be highly suspicious of any "therapist" who immediately places blame on your SO without any conversation with him.  It is clear there is parental alienation against him going on, simply by the fact that SD said she "didn't want a relationship" with her father and BM backed her on this.  Guess what - BM had already poisoned the kid's mind at that point.   And is sounds like BM has already poisoned and stacked the deck with the therapist, too. 

The behaviors SD is exhibiting are classic for a teen girl who has been alienated from her father.  She is using sex, drugs and drama to get the attention she so desperately needs.  

My only suggestion is that your SO should not remain passive - if he wants to save his relationship with his daughter, he needs to step up and assert his legal rights as her father.  He should be involved with her treatment and should be consulted by the experts for his input.  Insist on it.   

He should set up an appointment with the therapist to express his concerns about their professional analysis citing HIM as the problem with his daughter, without even talking to him first.   Then she should provide his side of the story.  If the therapist doesn't cooperate, he should contact the treatment center and voice a formal complaint. 


Lndsy747's picture

 BM has full legal custody and there is no other adult home when she's staying with her mom. Working nights just started in January and initially her mom was going to have her come over our house but changed the plan and just let her stay home. This wasn't the beginning of bad behavior but definitely when it escalated.

I have no doubt that SDs mind had been poisoned for years there are so many stories that show this. When she came into our lives again it seemed like was actually seeing her mom's fault in this and who she really is but now I'm wondering if that's true or if she was just being manipulative.

I mentioned to him that he should go down and see the therapist about this.

Curious Georgetta's picture

see the therapist as well? He cannot just wring his hands and say " well

 I tried. "  As a parent, you don't get to give up with your minor children just because 

Things become difficult.

The therapist, if indeed he/she made that assessment based solely on the daughter's  statement and perceptions.  These perceptions may or may not be   valid. However, it seems as though family counseling could be helpful in this case.

It seems a though both parents have given this child a lot of freedom to make her own decisions even when her behavior indicates that she is given to making  very self-destructive choices.

The mom made the right first step   The family now needs to follow through with Family counseling.

If the child's illness were physical rather than mental , there is no way that the parents  would take a step aside attitude.  If your husband won't do family counseling  with the daughter. He needs to seek parenting counseling to learn how to effectively re-engage with his child. Actually, both parents should be trying to learn how to effectively re-engage with this troubled child.

They should stop the finger pointing and make the girl's well being the priority. It does not sound as though good parenting was happening in either household.

You may care about the girl, but you are not a parent .   The ineffective parenting contributed to  and maybe even created this problem. You can care but the resolution is not in your control.


Lndsy747's picture

BM is an intake coordinator at a rehab currently and has worked as a therapist for troubled youth in the past so I'm guessing that she's flashing her degrees and experience and they're taking her word. My first thought too was why would the therapist not want to talk to my SO before making a decision and why wouldn't they want to try to fix the relationship rather than cut it off. I would think that the best time to talk would be while she's in therapy.

Harry's picture

Really not nice to have an 16 yo home by herself every night. Most likely trying to get attention, if can’t get good attention, she will take bad attention.  She need help, make sure she gets it. If you think she took the pills then needs emergency room treatment. Maybe a 24 to 48 hour hold to start getting somewhere

marblefawn's picture

Sounds as if she's wrapped all of you around her finger. When the screws tighten, cry suicide and everyone lays off! I would bet lots o' money she is not suicidal, but of course, because you don't know that for sure, you must buy into the drama.

Why did your husband not step in when BM planned to leave SD alone every night? No one saw this behavior coming with that arrangement? That is about the worst ass parenting I ever heard on both their parts!

No matter what happens, SD should NOT be home alone at barely 16. What kind of a crappy crisis counselor is BM if she made that decision??? I love that SD said she doesn't do "that stuff" anymore -- at the ripe old age of barely 16 she has retired from sex and drinking??? Right...please tell me your husband wasn't hoodwinked by a 16-year-old! Or is it just too much trouble for him to punish her in way that prevents her from having sex, getting high and drunk when she's not even old enough to drive?

SD needs constant adult supervision. What kind of people leave a 15-year-old alone every night? Your husband should demand SD be supervised with him because leaving SD alone is exactly how she got where she is. Of course, if you'd rather not have SD (and I wouldn't blame you) say nothing -- BM is doing a great job of wedging between SD and her dad. SD can be her problem when she ends up pregnant and addicted.

Lndsy747's picture

No matter what my SO said BM feels her way is best so although he voiced his concerns she said she had it under control. When we saw SD we didn't see any major changes that would have been a red flag that she was doing this and BM said that her sister was stopping in to check on her but clearly not as often as we thought.

The only thing that ever occurred at our house was smoking which she bought at her job which her dad was trying to make her quit but BM was against. He had limited interaction with friends and tried to spend time with her watching movies and playing games together throughout the day. He also stated along her to clean up and help out around the house and told her she'd need to earn trust back whether it was recent or months ago.

SD said a few times that she hated that her parents were getting along so I'm really leaning towards this being what she wanted all along.

BM won't respond to his texts at all anymore and had said her daughter isn't allowed back so I have no idea what the long term plan is at this point.

CantComplain's picture

This sounds a lot like my SD14 except that we were the 'bad' parents and her mother was the 'good'. 

I wish I had some advice on that, but the truth is that her mother loves it. BM caters to her every whim now because she is afraid SD14 will commit suicide. BM doesn't make SD do chores or clean up after herself and it has escalated now to the point where BM brings SD breakfast in bed every morning. Needless to say, there's been no progress. 

Good luck. You're going to need it. 

Lndsy747's picture

I think it's very similar. The day after her mom picked her up she took her downtown to see the fireworks which she had previously told her she wasn't allowed to do. I found out because I saw a picture on IG of her daughter with the friend that she got caught trying to drop weed off to! 

Lndsy747's picture

I think it's very similar. The day after her mom picked her up she took her downtown to see the fireworks which she had previously told her she wasn't allowed to do. I found out because I saw a picture on IG of her daughter with the friend that she got caught trying to drop weed off to! 

Lndsy747's picture

After not hearing from his ex at all after several text and then hearing from his sister that she's contacted her to see if SD can spend the rest of the summer with her we decided to go down and speak with a psychiatrist today. We let them know that we weren't there for SD and we just wanted info. They said they'd send the doctor out and then ended up having us speak with SD because she said she wanted to. The never came in and by the time we asked her had left for the day. 

When leaving BM text my SO about getting the rest of her clothes and when he mentioned visiting she went off of course. 

Since SOs sister pushed back and expressed concern about taking SD without her talking to her dad about it BM  is now planning on just signing SD up for different activities and keeping her at home based on what SD said when we were there which is definitely concerning.