I know this is a long read but I need help on this one - FamilyEducation
I know this is a long read but I need help on this one
12/14/2009 at 16:40 PM

I would like to get some other opinions’ on my situation please…Back ground…I am 43 and I have two children, my eldest child is 22 and my youngest daughter is 15. Now I have been divorced for about 14 years now. My issue is as follows…My youngest daughter and I had a pretty good relation up until a few months ago. We use to talk about anything and everything from school, her mother, future and even boys that she likes ( had to hold my seat at times) but we talked. We would talk about her friends in school and even some of the growing pains that come with just growing up. Now I am getting married in 2010 and I made sure that we even talked about this in great lengths trying to reassure her that she would always be my little girl and that I will always LOVE her. He was cool with it; at least that is what I thought. A little more history first; Last year around this time the glue that held the family together passed away. This was extremely difficult for all members including myself. It was a very long time before the family (my daughter, her mother, my daughter’s grandmother on her mother’s side and her uncle. My daughter have been living with her uncle ever sense the passing of her aunt. My feeling about this situation is a whole other story at another time.

Now this is the situation…My daughter asked if she could hang with me on this particular Saturday and as usual the answer was sure. She asked if I could drop her off at the Baltimore Harbor. Now this was Thursday and I told her I would let her know about that. Now my fiancée and I had a previously scheduled appointment that would take about an hour or so and I informed my daughter about this and how this was the last appointment that we would have to do. She was fine with going with us. We finished with the appointment and she wanted to go to the mall, (she’s 15 what else does a 15 year old girl want to do right) so we take her, get something to eat, talk a few and we are off to drop her off with her friends. Now the rules were as follows: When you get with your friends you call me just to let me know you are with them she replies “ok”. Oh I forgot Thursday she told me that her uncle was picking her up from the harbor at 8pm. So before she got out of the car I confirmed with her that at 8pm her uncle would be picking her up; yes was her response, so off we went. Now 8pm comes around and no call from my daughter, 8:15 no call, 8:30 no call 8:45 no call from her. I started calling her at those times as well and she would not answer my calls or my text messages. Well at this stage I am scared out of my wits and pissed needless to say. I leave to go to the Harbor to find her. While I am driving I call the uncle to see if she is with him and he was home and knows nothing about this. Now I am really pissed, She lied! That is all that is running through my head. She said that he would go and get her because he was closer than I was I said ok but five minutes later I called him back just to see if he had spoken to her. He said yes, and that her grandmother was coming to get her. I asked if she was coming back to his house and he said yes so I told him I am on my way to his house then. When I got there I explain the whole conversation and why I was so upset and he understood.
Now after being at his house for 10 minutes the grandmother calls the uncle and I remember him saying that I was there now. He gives the phone to me and I speak to her. “I am so sorry, I was my fault”. I chimed in and told her that we will talk about this when you get here. 5 minutes later they both walk in and right away the grandmother starts I am sorry…I listen for a minute and then the uncle jumps in and says that he forgot about this. My daughter then jumps in and says that he was trying to call uncle but she could not reach him. I said wait everyone; this was not the agreement that we had. If that was so then why did she (my daughter) call me and just tell me that uncle could not be reach and that he was not there I would have picked her up. No problem. This does not explain why you (my daughter) did not and would not answer the phone or reply to all of my text messages. This does not explain why your uncle told me that he knew nothing about this until you too get home. I told her that I was so afraid and scared that something might have happened and I was ready to spank and punish her and I have never had to do that before. I gave her the benefit of the doubt that night and hugged her and kissed her saying that I felt this way because I love her and will always protect her as long as I have breath in my lungs.

That was over two months ago and to date she does not speak to me at all. What in the world is going on? As a father this is so confusing to me. Her mother said that I need to give her space but going on three months. This is not right. Am I missing something here?

Three months is enough space. You have rights and your daughter is not 18 so you also have a responsibility to her. Have you spoken to her mother to find out what she (her mother) feels about the incindent? Her mother (and others) may be influencing her. The bottom line is that you had a right to be upset. However, she is growing up and is closer to a woman than to your "little girl"... Be careful that you remember she thinks of herself as capable of making her own decisions. She will not "always be your little girl," she will always be your daughter but your in a new game now. Call her and explain that it's important that you two talk this out like a father and daughter and that you can't have this go on any further. Tell her you don't want to force her to talk with you but if she can't you are going to have to insist. Remember, you have legal parental rights and you may have to pull that card if you want to repair this before it goes too far.

Thank you for your reply...I have spoken to her mother on this issue and all she ask is why did I reply this way and once I explained myself all she said it that she (my daughter's mother) is in a bad place right now. I replied that these are bad times for everyone. Then she said give her some time and I have not heard from her either. I have tried to talk to her as well with no luck.