I need some advice please. - FamilyEducation
I need some advice please.
01/25/2010 at 09:28 AM

Ok, I'm 16 years old and I live with my parents at the time. My mom and I don't get along very well and my dad, well he doesn't do anything except just let her yell and stuff. I have two different places I could go if I ever got kicked out, which my mom has just threatened to do. I did some research and I found out that the legal age to move out in GA without your parents consent is 17. I was wondering if that's true. Is it true that there's really NOTHING they could do? Like, if they were to call the cops the cops couldn't make me go home?

Amanda, I hear what you are saying and I can totally understand your frustration about your living situations right now.....BUT....I can also tell you that unless you're mom and dad are really emotionally or physically hurting you, leaving home is not going to be a good option at your age. Where will you go? How can you be sure that another place to live can offer you the support, love, care, and supervision that you still need? When I was your age, my parents were so involved in their own problems and issues that they lost track of how it might feel to be me. I had strict and often unforgiving parents and I had to fight tooth and nail for a social life. All the while, I was a straight-A student and really did quite well staying out of any trouble. It always seemed that no matter what I did, my parents were control freaks and destined to make my life a living hell. I thought of packing it up and leaving about a hundred times....but I had nowhere to go. Can you tell me what your mother is yelling at you for? What is she upset about? Is it certain things or just life in general? Is your Dad completely "checked-out" of everything that is going on around you or does it just seem this way? I'm asking you this because as a teenager, sometimes things appear to be one way when in reality, things are quite different to an adult perspective. Call it life experience or whatever but I am trying to help by getting more information from you. Before you make a snap decision and leave your true home, can you elaborate more on what is really going on? It sounds like your whole family has had a huge breakdown in communication and that if you were given an opportunity to repair that and learn how to communicate better, things will improve for everyone. I say this because I lived it myself. I would love to talk to you more, Amanda. If you are around.....let me know what's going on and maybe I can offer you some better choices than leaving your home.

Well, I went to go clean the kitchen and she got upset because I had to wet my hair so it would get out of my eyes. (It's very difficult to control sometimes) I had asked earlier that day that if after I finished all of my chores if I could go over to my boyfriends house. When I went to my dad last night and asked him what I could do to make things better he said to just ignore her, that she will get over it. I am a straight A student and I stay out of trouble. She does this every single time I get a boyfriend, most the time she doesn't like them, but she SAYS she like this one. She hasn't really had a problem with me going over there until now. He isn't in school anymore, so we don't get to see eachother durring the week and durring the weekend we try to spend a good amount of time together. I understand that she wants me home more and I've cancled plenty of plans that I had made for in the future so that I could be home more. But, she won't talk to me so I don't know how to fix the problem with her except do exactly what my dad said, ignore her and go on with life, but that is hard when she says alot of little snide remarks when I even say a word to her. Also to answer your question if I had somewhere to go, I do. One of my friends parents have already told me I could come stay with them if I ever needed to and so did my boyfriends.

Ok, so yesterday when I got home from school I sat down and talked to my mom, it didn't help that yesterday while at school I found out one of my friends had tried to kill herself and is now in a coma. But, anyways, I sat down with my mom and we talked at first we didn't get very far. She told me why she was really mad but, she kind of yelled instead of just talking to me. I ended up going to my room and calling my boyfriend asking him what I should do. He's actually really supportative and wants me to have a relationship with my mom and dad. But, a few minutes after I got off the phone with him, I had called my dad. He talked to me and calmed me down. BUT, then my brother in-law texted me, and it made me cry like a baby because he's been the only guy I've ever really looked up to as a true brother. SO I went and showed it to my mom and she said she had had him text me that, she said she knew I would listen to him. So, we sat down and talked more and this time it was more effective. She told me I just need to learn how to balance time with my family and with my boyfriend. They all love this one. So, this saturday we're all going out to dinner. Communication really was a problem. I was so worried about trying to communicate with my boyfriend that I forgot to communicate with my mom as well.

Wow, Amanda! You have really done a great job in such a short time! I am glad that you felt the communication breakdown between you and your parents was the issue. It's exactly what I figured the problem might be. I am proud of you that you approached your mom and gave the effort needed to talk to her. That must have been really difficult but I'm so glad that you did it. As a parent to teenage girls myself, it sounds to me that your mom is actually having some issues letting you go. I think that the boyfriend that you have and the time that you spend away from the family is getting to her. I can see her point and how she might feel but there has to be balance and compromise. You need to be able to grow up and experience life and she needs you to realize that you're not quite 100% on your own yet and shouldn't be. Compromise. Balance. It keeps the peace and also keeps communication open. Mothers are weird. We want our kids to grow up, have nice boyfriends, do well in school, and enjoy their teenage years. We also feel lonely when they grow up, we miss their presence at home, we feel disconnected to them at times, and we shut down. We're all human. I think this might be what you and your mom are experiencing from what you told me in your replies back to me. Thank you for giving me more information so I could get to a better conclusion and try to help you out more. Your current boyfriend does sound supportive and I am glad that your mother said that she likes him. Just keep things in perspective. This is what I tell my own teen daughters.....there is an order of priorities when you are a teenager and you need to observe that order. Number one is FAMILY. Number two is SCHOOL. Number three is interchangeable depending on what is important to you. It could be FRIENDS, BOYFRIEND, SPORTS, JOBS, etc. If you can use this as a guide to keep your priorities straight and be true to the order that they come in, everything will be much easier for you. Sometimes things might have to switch up in emergencies and stuff but generally, FAMILY comes first because without that you have nothing! SCHOOL and KNOWLEDGE is how you take all things to the next level in life. It is your ticket out of all situations and will carry you to where you want to go as you get older. These two things are what you will always fall back on in times of need....FAMILY and EDUCATION from SCHOOL. Trust me, you will. Friends and boyfriends will come and go. They are important and needed but they should never define you. Friends and boyfriends should enhance your life, not make it complicated. When it gets too rough or dramatic, then you might see some friends and boyfriends as more trouble than they are worth. People come and go. It's part of growing up and it will happen no matter what roads we choose to take in our lives. I can assure you that good friends will stay the course and a loving boyfriend can also become the man of your dreams when you are both old enough to realize it. I hope this makes sense to you. Lastly, keep talking to your mom. It will make you closer to her and as long as she is a trust-worthy and supportive person to you, I feel that mothers and daughters can share infinite secrets and have deep discussions that creates a special bond. If you find your mom getting angry or frustrated, sit her down and tell her that you really miss the mom who has balance and who makes you feel at ease.....not the one who is a yelling maniac and has shut-down. You also have to keep your behavior in check and understand that some of your mom's yelling could and probably is caused by something you might be doing. Like I said, mom's are weird. We want the best for our daughters but sometimes we just don't know how to communicate to the teenage mind. Your mom has got to let you experience making choices, making decisions on your own, and has also got to let you fall on your face a few times too. As long as you are good to your family and respectful of their time and efforts with you, and you are doing well in school, then you have earned the right to get out into the world and grow. If you're making dumb choices and can't balance your priorities, then you need a wake-up call and your mom will be the one to give it to you. Don't ignore her. Your Dad has probably taken the path of least resistance on that suggestion and I don't think that's a good answer. Ignorance is NOT BLISS...it's just ignorance and solves nothing. Your Dad needs to get in the game and you might want to remind him of that. Keep making progress and keep talking. You are getting somewhere here and you are opening up the lines of communication! Good job! Don't even consider moving in with a friend or boyfriend. It will be the quickest way to lose these people in your life. You don't belong in their homes and it will change your relationship with them right away. It will complicate everything and be of no help to you at all. Stay where you are loved and work this out. You already made progress so this tells me that you are right where you need to be. Heck...show them our conversation if you think it will help you. If not, then take what I've given you here and keep applying it to your situation. I am positive that you will continue to see improvement and success on getting things back to normal. Nothing and nobody is perfect. That's what make the world so unique. If you can get through these teenage years, you can get through anything, Amanda! You're doing a great job already. Keep it up!