Niece wants to live with us... - FamilyEducation
Niece wants to live with us...
06/26/2008 at 16:54 PM

My soon to be 15 year-old niece is very unhappy and wants to move away from her parents and has felt this way for a couple years. She has visited us in the past for weeks at a time and has enjoyed the ranching lifestyle. Do we entertain this idea?

She is very unhappy in the small "farming" community (1100 pop.) that she was born and raised in. She is the youngest of 3. Oldest got pregnant out of high school before she then married father, still lives in same town and seems unhappy with the choices she made. Middle child is going to be a senior (only boy) that is doing well and is treated as the "golden child" that does no wrong. (According to niece)

She matured, "developed", very early. Has no friends to speak of but has done well in school and is very talented in the arts. She thinks everyone around her drinks too much and are boring. She feels like she is drowning in her community and home. She has been defiant and argumentative with her parents for the past year or so, but lately has escalated.

She is currently staying with my mother but cannot remain there.

Her parents are at their wits end and are thinking of a girls home.

Both parents work full time at respectable careers.

We are ranchers with grown children.

Any advice will be appreciated.

If all are agreed about this then why not. She is clearly unhappy at the moment and if she can continue her schooling in a place where she feels safe and happy, and you have the means to do this, then go ahead. I hope it turns out well for you all. The last place I would put her is a girls home. That could be a major disaster.

I believe that family is always better if it works. The parents of this girl seem agreeable, would they later regret this if you succeed with her? Are you prepared to go back to High School while she goes through it? Once she has her way and lives with you will she become defiant and argumentative with you? One difference I could see is that you will be "home" more if that is what she needs. The older sister may have caused some reputation damage to overcome that is difficult for this girl and you may be allowing her the opportunity to succeed that she needs.