How to treat an 18 year old girl - FamilyEducation
How to treat an 18 year old girl
11/01/2012 at 21:33 PM

I have an 18 year old girl who is a good student, and a good kid in overall. she does not drink or smoke or use drugs or ditch school or none of those things. We used to have an excellent relationship but now she has completely drifted away from me and now she has even told me she is planning to leave home as soon as she gets the first chance. My daughter has told me she wants to be treated like an adult, but when I ask her what does that mean she says she wants to make her own choices and decisions. I ask her what choices and decisions she says she does not know. I don't know what to do. Please any advise will be greatly appreciate it.

Hi Montenegro. Sometimes teens express that they want to be their own boss, authority, rule maker, or be in charge of their own life, living at their own address when the rules in your house interfere with what they want to do. Since there is no sign to you that she has a drug problem, or drinking problem, and is an all around good person, than try to get to the root of whats bothering her like asking what would she do differently in her own house or apartment? If she says she don't know as you mentioned than most likely she is trying to hide something or really just wants to express that she can handle adulthood but may not know whats involved as far as responsibilities. Has someone she knows moved out and has it better? Has she heard stories of family members or even of yourself moving out and finding happiness?Could also be that she feels "trapped". Maybe she just needs some space. I hope everything works out for her sake and yours. -Ronnie

Give her her space and let her try all of her theories about how life works to see if she can prove herself right. This stage is going to last a few years-- she thinks she's ready for the world and also, of course, you are soooo old, so there's no way ANY of your knowledge applies to her because she's soooo much smarter-- sound about right? Let go of the child/parent relationship because you now have to learn how to relate to her as an adult. She will change, soften and eventually learn that she doesn't need to prove herself so much. Remember how it was for you, and that your relationship will come full circle. She doesn't need you as much, in fact she NEEDS to seperate from you! Later, when she becomes a wife and a mother, she's going to appreciate you. Hang in there! You are absolutely right about everything you've ever taught and told her about. Have confidence! You've done a good job. She will come back.