Am I too strict???

  1. Ugh - help. I have a 12.5 yr old that I can't seem to quite figure out (she's going on 21...). I apparently don't let her do things that *all of her friends are allowed to do* so can someone tell me if I am being overbearing? Here are some examples:

    I don't let her stay up til 11 or 12 p.m. on school nights. I expect her to do chores daily, and no she doesn't get paid for them. But I do pay for all the presents for the HEAPS of bday parties she gets invited to, roller skating parties, clothes she needs when she outgrows them, etc. etc. I don't allow her to stay on the computer for more than an hour or so, well...sometimes maybe 2 hours a day...and I have heavy duty parental controls! I have myspace blocked, and have a report sent to my email on the websites she surfs so I can see what she is doing. I'm sorta getting used to the idea that she is now entering the realm of watching R movies (since of COURSE all her friends are allowed, lol). I also make her remove some of her eyeliner if the line is thicker than a quarter inch!! I also don't like it when she wants to wear ALL BLACK, and I really hate it when she wears the same dang sweatshirt over and over again. Her friends are allowed to have candles and insense and their own lighter in their bedroom (um, somehow I don't think a 12 yo should have a small fire in their room - they just don't think about safety issues). I also make her wear her bike helmet even when all her friends don't because *it's not cool*.

    Sheesh, sometimes I don't know how to do anything right! And of course, all of her friends parents buy them CDs, give them $10 bills for their daily lunch (good god I don't even spend that much on my lunch). I'm just trying to figure out if I have the reins too tight because I know my parents did and I rebelled. But I am also finding my *little girl* is growing up and it is sort of hard to get used to.

    So...what do you let the 12 year old in your life do?? Am I overbearing and controlling? LOL help!

    ~J
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  2. 35 Comments

  3. by   DutchgirlRN
    Quote from RNin2007
    Ugh - help. I have a 12.5 yr old that I can't seem to quite figure out (she's going on 21...). I apparently don't let her do things that *all of her friends are allowed to do* so can someone tell me if I am being overbearing?
    No, I absolutely don't think you are too strict. The fact that she's going to B'day parties and going to lots of outside activies such as movies, etc speaks volumes. My friends whose parents were too strict didn't let them do any of those things. It sounds like you've got it all together just right. It's so difficult raising kids. I would never let my 17 year old burn candles in his room. Gees, I can't believe parents let their kids do that.

    I used to tell my kids. "I'm sorry their parents let them do those things but I'm your parent and our rules are different. You'll just have to deal with it".
    Last edit by DutchgirlRN on Oct 21, '06
  4. by   SouthernLPN2RN
    I think you're doing fine. I myself was allowed entirely too much leeway at that age and I paid for it. Anyhow, the helmet thing is an image issue more than anything. If she wants extra money, she should earn it. I agree that she should have things that are expected of her that she doesn't get paid for. That's an issue I've had with my DD.
  5. by   JentheRN05
    I have the exact same rules all the way down to the email reports on internet activity on my 13 year old little one. Yes she will rebel, it's normal to. No your not too overbearing. Your loving and protective. It's what you should be. Nice to see i'm not the only one with those fears.
  6. by   txspadequeenRN
    I dont think your strict enough...just kidding. Keep on doing what your doing. I just pulled my 13 yr old daughter out of public school because she was getting in trouble with the law and having a lesbian relationship with a friend from school. Her response to this is well at least it aint a boy and all my friends do it..... She just bought her self about 5 real close years with her mother... there is more that she has done that would make your head spin (like her posting sex ads pretending to be 20, attempting to run away 3 times, being suicidal and homicidal (these last 2 bought her some time in the psych unit)....but truth is you give an inch they take a mile. My daughter has no clue obviously what is right and wrong... so now I make ALL of her decisions for her. I dont care if she thinks I am the worst mother in the world my personal opinion is I just saved her life and one day she will thank me.... Stick to what you know is right.....
  7. by   SmilingBluEyes
    stick to your guns.....but pick your battles. it does not get easier, I am sorry to tell ya. Peer pressure is ENORMOUS. My 14 year old boy is testing me OH SO SORELY lately. HANG IN THERE. Lord willing, they ALL reach maturity someday, despite us. Stick to your guns, with the deal-breakers and safety issues. But as far as dress, if she wears all black is that really so horrible? Maybe you can relax on certain things while you hold to your standards on others.

    Be strong...She may hate you now for it, but one day, she will get you cared too much to let her get hurt or go astray.
  8. by   RNin2007
    Quote from txspadequeen921
    I dont think your strict enough...just kidding. Keep on doing what your doing. I just pulled my 13 yr old daughter out of public school because she was getting in trouble with the law and having a lesbian relationship with a friend from school. Her response to this is well at least it aint a boy and all my friends do it..... She just bought her self about 5 real close years with her mother... there is more that she has done that would make your head spin (like her posting sex ads pretending to be 20, attempting to run away 3 times, being suicidal and homicidal (these last 2 bought her some time in the psych unit)....but truth is you give an inch they take a mile. My daughter has no clue obviously what is right and wrong... so now I make ALL of her decisions for her. I dont care if she thinks I am the worst mother in the world my personal opinion is I just saved her life and one day she will thank me.... Stick to what you know is right.....
    Wow. I am seriously floored after reading this...I can't imagine how difficult that must be. I am glad that you care enough to pull her out of school and be the mean mom that you really need to be right now. I can't even imagine dealing with some of the things you just named. Dang. I am still thinking about my OWN child, and if she would even be capable of doing these...I think i'd fall over dead! My thoughts are with you...and I hope she turns around.

    ~J
  9. by   DutchgirlRN
    I so feel for you txspadequeen921. (((((((HUGS)))))))

    Yes, raising kids is definately very difficult. My daughter never gave me a minutes trouble, has always been very honest, trustworthy, respectful, a true joy to have as a daughter. She got married, had a baby, found out he is a cocaine addict who also spends $500-$750 a month on gay porn, doesn't pay bills, disappears at times and she stays with him for their son's sake because he says he'll change, he'll go for help, yada, yada, we keep hearing the same crap from him. She believes him. I always thought these type of things happened only to quote "trashy" families. I can tell you now from personal experience, that's not the case. I can't discuss this with friends because I find it too embarrassing and humiliating to admit to anyone about my own child. I feel safe here on All Nurses. Thank You All.

    You raise them to the best of your ability and then stand back and pray. She is 26 y/o. She'll have to suffer the consequences of her poor choices. I just don't want my Grandson to get hurt in the process.
    Last edit by DutchgirlRN on Oct 21, '06
  10. by   VivaLasViejas
    NO, you are NOT being too strict!! My dh and I raised all of our kids pretty much the same way, and not one of them has gotten into drugs, booze, or trouble with the law. We must have done something right........

    The only thing is, like Deb said, you have to pick your battles. I hated the all-black look too, the ratty jeans and 'goth' makeup and piercings, but they waited till they were 18 to get pierced, and as far as clothes were concerned, I was glad they were at least MODEST!! The things they sell in the stores for little girls nowadays.........I wouldn't have let my daughters out of their bedrooms in some of those outfits. So I allowed them to do what they liked with their hair and wear the same Chicago Bulls tee shirt five days a week if they so chose (while I cringed inwardly), and eventually they grew up to become decent dressers, if not exactly fashionistas.

    Keep up the good work........it's tough to raise children right, but it's SO worth it in the long run. Stick to your guns!
  11. by   tnbutterfly
    I think your rules are very good. Who says life is fair? I had similar rules for both of my kids when they were that age. Yes, we were "stricter" parents than many of their friends' parents, but kids need rules and boundaries. They were not given brand new cars when they turned 16...they had to do chores.....they knew that was part of being a responsible member of the family. Sure they would've liked some of the things their friends had. But they understood that we didn't operate like that. They learned to appreciate what they had....and that was unconditonal love from their parents. We provided everything they needed and then some. My kids are now 23 and 26 and they have become very repectable adults that I am very proud of. They both have very good work ethics as well as good moral standards. I can see that they have internalized the values they were brought up with. Hang on....stick to your guns... Your child is your responsibilty.... Your daughter will one day look back at this time and appreciate the tough love you showed her.
  12. by   Roy Fokker
    Hi,

    I'm not a parent but I had strict parents growing up - I don't think you're strict. I actually think you're a little more lenient.

    Here's my 22 year olds perspective:

    Quote from RNin2007
    I don't let her stay up til 11 or 12 p.m. on school nights.
    My Bedtime was 10 sharp. My curfew was 8-9 PM. 9 PM was dinner and I was expected to be home - if I was going to miss dinner, a request for permission had to be acquired atleast 2 days in advance.

    No exceptions. Infact, there was no exceptions to ANY rule of the house. Father openly declared that "this is my house, not a democracy. Your mother and I are absolute dictators - if you don't like it, feel free to leave".

    Quote from RNin2007
    I expect her to do chores daily, and no she doesn't get paid for them.
    I had no pocket money either. Money was budgeted every month and it included travel expenses (I used public transport a lot). If I spent more than I should have - too bad. No amount of screaming, whimpering or pleading was going to help. If the money was a DIRE necessity (for example - paying for a school trip), it would be advanced from next months budget.

    Chores were strictly "if you use it, you maintain it" rotation. We cleaned our own plates and clothes. We helped with the housework. Punishment for failure to do chores was a reduced budget or earier curfew times. Chores had to be done when ordered - not when we felt like doing them ... but this was negotiable.

    Quote from RNin2007
    I don't allow her to stay on the computer for more than an hour or so, well...sometimes maybe 2 hours a day...and I have heavy duty parental controls! I have myspace blocked, and have a report sent to my email on the websites she surfs so I can see what she is doing.
    Father used to password lock the computer (at the BIOS!). I had to have him unlock it. Time was usually one hour sessions. He'd give me a warning if I overshot by 15 minutes. If I ignored him, he'd simply turn the power off (which resets the password, which means he has to unlock it again).

    Quote from RNin2007
    I'm sorta getting used to the idea that she is now entering the realm of watching R movies (since of COURSE all her friends are allowed, lol).
    TV was locked when parents were not at home - Father would lock the TV in a special cabinet and for added security, would unplug the TV and lock it before he left for work. I was allowed two hours of TV during weekends - unless there was a nice program/show on Discovery (or some such).

    Father never objected when I asked for books. Ofcourse, he'd monitor the content (no raunchy novels for example) but we always received TONS of publications - three major newspapers, 4 magazines and Readers Digest. Every three months, Reader's Digest would send a catalog - Father allowed me to pick two books ... any two books and he'd buy 'em. From "Unsolved mysteries of the World" to "True Stories of World War II".


    Looking back at it now - I am thankful that they were strict. The number of disinterested, misguided, aimless drifters I met in college absolutely convinced me about that. Parenting is a near impossible job and as someone on this website pointed out - raising teenagers is like nailing jello to a tree.

    Tell your daughter to write this down and keep it in a safe place: "In 10 years time, I'll be thanking my Mom and I will think that I have the best parents in the world".


    cheers,
  13. by   dianah
    I agree w/other posters, you're not too strict. We're a teensy bit more lenient than you, but then, our kids are boys and are older. When they were 13, their bedtime was 9-10pm. Yes to chores. Yes to allowance. Yes to helmets (the safety things are NOT negotiable). No to R rated movies, and No to certain PG-13s (I still review the movies they want to see, before they go to the theater).

    I'll bet if you were to question her friends' parents, the "All the other kids get to do it" argument would not hold water. Sometimes we parents need to touch base re: what is REALITY and what the kids are telling us. They don't have the common sense and maturity to handle a lot of the issues/subject matter they THINK they do, IMO.

    Hang in there! -- D
  14. by   canoehead
    You are doing fine. If it traumatizes her too much to not see R rated movies she can stay home and study. (heehee) For a 12 yo perhaps 11-12 at night is too late, but you know your daughter best.

    My only real suggestion is to have a list of extra chores she can do and the money she will earn so you can just point to it when she complains about not having enough money. I agree with you- for $10 a day she should be able to buy the whole day's worth of meals, not just lunch, and eat very well.

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