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Old 02-08-18, 05:26 AM
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Becca turns 18 on the 17th- some advice/info?

Yes, the saga continues. If you have been following in a nutshell...we took her car away, she earned back the privledge of driving her and her sister to school and driving to and from work. No driving friends, and when she wanted to sleep over a friends' house we drove and picked her up. Things have improved so far.

She keeps talking about how great things will be when she is 18. So Mark and I asked her to write down what things she thinks will be different when she is 18 and what her expectations are. Then we had her read them to us and then we said that Mark and I would talk and we would have another family meeting with her to talk about it. Im very proud of the way I suggested that and carried it out. We listened with our listening ears. I didnt say anything about what I thought about her ideas, just let her talk and told her we would get back to her. This is really good growth for me to keep my mouth shut and my poker face on. I cant ask her to do something and immeditately shoot down her ideas or argue with her about them.

Here are some of her expectations:
That she will be allowed to stay out later (she didnt even mention the word curfew just later)
That she would be able to go out later on in the evening like if she and her friends made spur of the moment plans to go see a movie or something at 9pm
That she will be a legal adult.
I know she is going to pierce something but she didnt mention that part.
I know she wants tattoos but she didnt mention that part either.
She mentioned specifically: "by law, I will be a legal adult but I fully respect that I live in your house and have to abide by your rules"
She also said" I know the car isnt in my name and Im being allowed to use it".
So thats good.
She thinks she should be able to make more of her own decisions( we are hoping this does not include refusing community college). There are a few more that are variations of what I have already mentioned.

What do you all think? If any of you remember her track record or have followed her story feel free to chime in.
What changed for you when you turned 18?
Not much changed for me because I was just like her with the lying and stuff so the last huge fight with my mom was when I said I was going out cause I was 18 and she said I wasnt. She yanked my ponytail and smacked me....which she never did but I swear I deserved it. I ran up to my room and we never fought like that again- and Its like things just changed between us. I am NOT saying I need to have a physical altercation with Becca to force some kind of cathartic wake up call and I know it sounds awful what happened to me. I swear my mom was never abusive I was just so....venomous and mean to her with my mouth that she snapped. Once I realized that 18 still meant I had to listen to my mom things just changed.

But seriously, what changed for you and what were your expectations? Were they met? If you have younger children what will you do?
I would be lying if I said I wasnt terrified. I dont ever want to have a worst case scenario where she takes off cause she doesnt like the rules or we have to kick her out (which I cant see ever happening) but the worries still percolate in my mind.
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Old 02-08-18, 07:14 AM
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Re: Becca turns 18 on the 17th- some advice/info?

I spent a fair bit of time living in my parents house as a legal adult. I have always been a rule follower, though, and didn't learn how to drive until I was 19. I still didn't like to drive after that, so I releyed on my friends for transportation when I was home. That gave me an excuse for being late, but I never really abused it.

To be honest, not much changed. I do remember having a curfew of midnight on weekdays, mostly because my dad couldn't sleep until he knew I was home and safe. Even when I moved back after I graduated, I still tried to get home at a reasonable time because there is nothing quite like coming home at 2:30 in the morning and having your dad greet you as you're coming upstairs after a night at the club.

And after writing all that, I realize how atypical I was/am. If I were a parent, there would be firm boundaries. Legal adult or not, it's your house and your rules...that part stayed with me even when I moved back in my late 20's after grad school.
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Old 02-08-18, 11:50 AM
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Re: Becca turns 18 on the 17th- some advice/info?

I suggest you have a written contract, and explain your rules. When I was 18 I was in college and when I came home on there were very clear rules about my curfew because I lives with my mom, grandma, and great grandma...none of which were up past 10pm, so it was not acceptable for me to be home after that.

If she is in your house you are the one keeping up with her. Where she is going, who she is with, how long she stays out. Even if she was married she would have to report these things to her husband, just so he didn't worry. No different.

So, yes she is a legal adult but still under your house:
-Curfew = yes, out of respect for those living in the house.
-piercing and tattoo = can't stop her, but I would encourage her to get the tattoo in a place that isn't visible unless she is in a bathing suit. She can't know what her future holds in the job world, and you can kill 90% of the prospects with a visible tattoo.

Also, my mom's rule was if I was in school I stayed for free. If I wasn't in school I paid rent. It was only $200 a month but it showed responsibility for what I was given. Cell phone and car insurance should also be paid, at least a portion, like half, if she isn't in school she needs to start working and figuring out how to be an adult, and that comes with rules and bills.
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Old 02-08-18, 04:16 PM
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Re: Becca turns 18 on the 17th- some advice/info?

Parenting a teen can certainly be challenging, but it sounds like you and your husband are handling things wisely and doing some great things to make the process go smoother. Congrats on some of the strategies you've implemented!

Becca's comment, "by law, I will be a legal adult but I fully respect that I live in your house and have to abide by your rules" is a very mature stance to take and sounds like she really understands that you and your husband still call the shots while she is living under your roof. Have you thought about a contract of some sort to document your wishes in writing and have Becca sign them so there is no misunderstanding of what is expected?

I wish you all the best...let us know how things are going!
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Old 02-09-18, 07:58 AM
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Re: Becca turns 18 on the 17th- some advice/info?

The contract thing sounds really good. I just emailed my husband this thread.
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Old 02-16-18, 09:03 AM
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Re: Becca turns 18 on the 17th- some advice/info?

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The contract thing sounds really good. I just emailed my husband this thread.
Sorry, had the flu, how did it go?
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Old 02-23-18, 06:00 AM
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Re: Becca turns 18 on the 17th- some advice/info?

Well there is no contract yet, what we had her do was make a list of what she thinks her privleges should be when she is 18 and then we would have a meeting to discuss how they match up with what we expect. Then everyone got sick so we need to still have the follow up meeting. So far so good but she still doesnt have her car back because now its out of service which I think is a good thing if you can possibly find something positive about a broken car.
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Old 02-28-18, 11:44 AM
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Re: Becca turns 18 on the 17th- some advice/info?

Hi, Sarah. I don’t have any input but I’ve read your threads about your daughter. I just wanted to send you support and I think you are doing a great job. Those boundaries/contract and following through with consequences sounds good. I have a 17-yr old and she’s a handful, at times. Take care.
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Old 02-28-18, 11:45 AM
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Re: Becca turns 18 on the 17th- some advice/info?

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Originally Posted by sarahsweets View Post
Well there is no contract yet, what we had her do was make a list of what she thinks her privleges should be when she is 18 and then we would have a meeting to discuss how they match up with what we expect. Then everyone got sick so we need to still have the follow up meeting. So far so good but she still doesnt have her car back because now its out of service which I think is a good thing if you can possibly find something positive about a broken car.
Iím glad you all are on the mend health wise. Your last sentence made me lmao.
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