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  1. #1
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    Default More horrible 12 y/o preteen attitude, how would you handle this?

    My DD has been downright nasty, not just to her siblings, but to me and DH as well. She doesn't accept responsibility for any of her behavior, and everyone else is to blame. A lot of this is the age, I get that. I recently read "Getting to Calm" which was recommended on here. It was very good and I am working putting the advice into practice but I still tend to take things personally, which I know I shouldn't.

    Today was no exception, and she was her typical nasty self. Not only that, she texted me to pick her up after school in her typical nasty tone. I have called her out on this several times, and the behavior has not changed. I have told her repeatedly that she does not have the right to speak to me that way and that there will be consequences if this continues. I have taken away the phone and the electronics in the past but eventually the disrespect and nastiness returns. So today we were supposed to go to watch a basketball game after school and I cancelled the plans. The problem is, she then became even nastier. blaming me for the fact that she missed the opportunity to see the game and copping more of an attitude. (though when I asked her if she deserved to go based on her behavior she did say "probably not")

    When DH got home from work we sat down and talked about it, and she proceeded to say how horrible we are, we make her life terrible, yada yada. There was no apology whatsoever and she seemed to take no responsibility for her actions. She was nasty, yelling, etc. So tonight we told her she would not be going to soccer practice. This is her passion, she loves it, and rarely misses a practice ever. I had mixed feelings about it because it affects her team also, but enough was enough. I had had it.

    I know it's a phase but I expect to be treated with respect, period. Am I being too harsh? Her phone and ipad are being taken away and she is going to have to earn them back. Maybe the problem is I have not been strict enough with the consequences to let it get to this point. But how do you handle it when the kids takes no responsibility for her actions and sees nothing wrong with her behavior?? I even hear DH talking to her right now and she said she feels she has done nothing wrong. Sigh...it's going to be a long several years...
    Last edited by jerseygirl07067; 02-11-2016 at 09:09 PM.
    Marcy

    DD1 2003
    DD2 2005
    DD3 2009

  2. #2
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    Hang in there? Sounds like you are doing everything right to me. I have a nearly 14 year old with attitude issues, although not quite the ones you are describing. I learned a little from you.
    Advice and commentary on living overseas

    DD1 15, DD2 12, and DS 9

  3. #3
    KpbS's Avatar
    KpbS is offline Red Diamond level (10,000+ posts)
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    So tough! No, you are not being too harsh, IMO. She must learn to be respectful to authority and make the connection that she will lose consequences if she is rude. If she gives her future boss attitude, she'll be fired! Teachers, she'll be kicked out of class. She knows she was disrespectful to you because she can get away with it, but it's your job to tell her she can not and then enforce the rules.

    It's tough business, but so much tougher at 15/16 than 12. Hang in there!!!
    K

  4. #4
    SummerBaby is offline Platinum level (1000+ posts)
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    My 11.5 year old can be pretty bad as well, except she usually will admits he is wrong once she calms down. I don't really have any advice for you-I just wanted to say I get it! Its hurtful. Have you tried therapy with her?

  5. #5
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    Rather than trying to make her admit she's wrong, have you tried a compassionate approach? I know it's counterintuitive, because the impulse when you're greeted with such disrespect is to clamp down and be strict, but if you want results, a different approach might actually work better. I'd find a time when things are going well and I'd sit down with her. I'd tell her up front that you're not going to criticize her, but you do want to talk about how you've been feeling lately. I'd tell her how much you love her, how proud you are of her, and how excited you are to see her growing into a smart, capable, strong young woman. Tell her it's because you love her so much that you've been really upset lately. Tell her your feelings are really hurt because when she speaks to you like she doesn't care about your feelings or like she doesn't even like you, it breaks your heart just a little. Tell her you've been punishing her because you just don't know what else to do to get her to be kind to you, or at least not to be hurtful. Tell her you don't really want to punish her. You just want her to be a member of your family team just like she's a member of her soccer team. The family only works when each member supports the whole team, and when each member supports the others so that they can achieve their goals. You want to help her achieve her goals, but you need her to want to help you, too. Ask her if she has any suggestions about how you can best respond to her when you feel like she's not being a team player to inspire her to be supportive. See what she has to say. If she responds to you with snark, it's completely fine to let her know that you're going to continue to do what you've been doing as long as you and she together are unable to find a way to work as a team, but that you know it can be different, because you know she's a kind and loving person. Keep trying to have conversations like that. It might help.

    Also, try reading How to Talk So Teens Will Listen and Listen So Teens Will Talk https://www.amazon.com/dp/0060741260..._XwuVwb1DKK41M
    I haven't actually read it. I've only read the kids one, but that one was so helpful that I can't imagine this one wouldn't be good, too.


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  6. #6
    jren is offline Platinum level (1000+ posts)
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    Right there with you with my 12 YO DD! She's rude to me, my DH and her brother. I've tried everything, including the above compassionate route. It's habitual for her. Her first instinctive response to any situation is nastiness. I keep working with her and reminding her that her responses are HER CHOICE, and she can choose to be a happy person and have a happy home life. Things are okay right now, she's earned a tv in her room, but we are nowhere near out of the woods yet.


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  7. #7
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    I hate snottiness/rudeness and I totally understand why this would bother you. I have no advice, because a glare still works around here...I am not looking forward to the preteen-teen years.
    Mommy to my wonderful, HEALTHY twin girls
    6/08 - Preemies no more!

  8. #8
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    I'd look into family therapy focusing on communication. That sounds outside of typical for tween/teen behavior, and I would want to turn this around very quickly before she's a full blown teenager.

  9. #9
    Corie's Avatar
    Corie is offline Pink Diamond level (15,000+ posts)
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    Quote Originally Posted by jerseygirl07067 View Post
    My DD has been downright nasty, not just to her siblings, but to me and DH as well. She doesn't accept responsibility for any of her behavior, and everyone else is to blame. A lot of this is the age, I get that.
    Okay, I'm going to be honest with you. I just don't agree that the nasty behavior is due to her age. So many people view nasty behavior in tweens/teens
    as typical behavior but I don't agree. I think you might want to check into finding some outside help for her.
    Corie

    "A smile is a curve that can set a lot of things straight."
    -fortune cookie

  10. #10
    Simon is offline Ruby level (4000+ posts)
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    That behavior would not fly in our family. I don't know who said it here first, but my kids aren't allowed to give their best behavior to everyone else (soccer practice, for example) then come home and take it out on us! This isn't a preschooler who needs to decompress but doesn't know how to do it appropriately. If anything, I think you are putting up with too much from her since what you describe makes it sound like its within her power/control to do better and that she has in the past to avoid negative consequences.
    Ds1 (2006). Ds2 (2010). Ds3 (2012).

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