Saturday, April 2, 2011

The Girl

Relationship with children who are on the brink of adulthood are apparently tricky.
With Bucket, his life so revolves around getting in trouble at school, learning to socialize, ignoring his chores, eating chicken and pasta, playing video games, and being forced to shower.
With Tiger, it's all about the music.  Also eating constantly, flirting with girls, ignoring his chores, stealing his dad's jeans when he forgot to do laundry, and hanging out with his friends fishing.
With Missy, it is so complicated.  She and her friends fight constantly, and when they fight, she fights with us.  She complains...constantly.  If I give her $10, she wants to know why it's not $20.  If I make dinner, she tells me how she could have done it better.  She nags so much that spending time with her is not pleasant.  She screams at her brothers for things she assume they did, rolls her eyes at every comment, and has repeatedly told me that she can't wait to get out of our hellhole of a house so she can do what she wants.  And when I correct her behavior, she tries to act like a baby and say "I love you Mommy" in this exaggerated baby voice, which only infuriates me because I despise using love as a weapon to get what you want.

It makes me want to weep deep inside, knowing how unhappy she is; but also knowing that I can't let her rule the house just to make her happy.  And so we battle, every day.  We go to bed arguing, and we wake up arguing.  I am so very, very tired of her mouth, her nasty attitude, the slamming of doors and the disrespect.

Last night, she threw a massive fit while we were dropping Tiger off at the band's middle school lock-in.  Despite the fact that I had told her several times that we were way too early, she had already called in her Chinese food order and so off we went.  Then she was mad because we so early that she missed seeing her boyfriend at the lock-in.  I offered to sit in the parking lot for 20 minutes just so she could see him, but she started yelling about how all it was doing was pissing me off (waiting was not making me mad...her bad attitude was, however.)  So as we left, she then starting whining about why we didn't wait on her boyfriend...after she told me to leave.

Oh peeps.  Do you know what I did next?

I snapped.  I told her how her attitude made her unattractive, that her constant nagging and complaining was going to drive this boyfriend away.  I told her that being with her was a chore, and that I didn't like spending time with her because all she does is complain about where we are, why we aren't somewhere else, and if I don't buy her something, that she is angry.  It was probably not the right thing to say to a 15 year old girl, but I just let go and told her exactly what I was thinking.  In fact, while Bucket was in the car as well, I told both of them that the only time anyone was ever kind to me was when I was buying them something, such as a game, food, or clothing.  And that the only reason they even loved me was because of what I could give them materially, and not because I was their mom and they respected me. 

Before this all happened, I had bought tickets to a Taste of Home show in Daytona Beach for TODAY.  April 2.  Just me and Missy.  Hoping, praying, that this would be an opportunity to spend time with her, to reach across this bridge that is just getting wider and wider.  The tickets were not very expensive, about $15 each.  Tiger and Bucket can stay home together for a few hours while Missy and I reconnect.  Now she doesn't want to go, and I don't really blame her.  We did not speak to each other at all last evening.  I took two tests for school, and went to bed by 10pm because I had to get up at 5:30am on a Saturday morning to pick up Tiger at the middle school (who also, by the way, started an argument with me on the way home...teenagers are sooooo much fun!).  This morning I am up with a broken heart, knowing I hurt my daughter; my firstborn who I love so much, who seems to be slipping away into worldliness. 

I have to take Bucket to do some labwork at the hospital when he wakes up (he needed to be fasting) and I always take labwork kids out to breakfast when they're done.  I am hoping when I come back from that, that Missy is awake and in a better mood, and maybe we can attempt the Taste of Home show.  I really do love her; my heart wouldn't hurt so bad if I didn't.  So I think the point of this long winded post is to please pray for me as I navigate parenting a teenage daughter on my own.  As usual, I have no idea what I'm doing, but learning as I go.


Erin said...

Oh, Sarah! My heart broke as I read this & I was, literally, in tears by the end. I am so so sorry! I am praying for you & your sweet but struggling daughter! I know you know this but.......God is kind, gracious, loving, merciful & good & He is in control of this & every situation! I love you my precious friend!

Sarah R said...

I was crying too, Erin. We both apologized to each other, but that is the thing about words; you can't ever really take them back. We did end up going to the Taste of Home show, and did have a good time.
Leaning on God, as you know, is all I have left. And it is the best thing to have anyway, and I cherish that.

Jennifer M. said...

I'm sorry, Sarah! Sounds like you've had a rough week. :( She's at that age where she wants independence but isn't quite mature enough to handle it. She still loves you though, even if she doesn't know how to show it.