Totally Selfish Teenager

by Denise Lance
(Brighton UK)

I have just recently moved countries so as my daughter can go to a very good private school to do her A levels.

Her father and I are divorced(ten years)and all through her life she has been told by him that the monies I received from the divorce is really for her. I have given her everything expensive haircuts/colouring, designer bags, anything she wants from my wardrobe. I do everything, cooking, ironing, and am always there for her emotionally. I am now looking for a job in UK and need five minutes of her time to just help me with a few internet issues and there's just no way she will.

I'm very frustrated paying for simple things to do with the internet that would have taken her no time. I've moved countries left friends and family so she can have the best, I do everything for her and don't complain, I give her 100 pounds a month allowance. I feel so frustrated that my child is incapable of GIVING. I have been asking her for three months and she just can't do it. She never hardly buys me a little gift for Mothers Day, etc., and I just feel like I have raised a child that expects everything but can't give.

Comments for Totally Selfish Teenager

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get with the program
by: Anonymous

Have you people lost the ability to raise unselfish children? Mine are not and never have been because they knew what was expected of them in life, which was generosity even when you have nothing. We hda very little money and I raised 3 on my own, no child support and they are not selfish because they were taught from an early age that it was an unacceptable way to behave.

by: from Sara

Holy cow, Denise! Looks like you've got yourself a little monster there! Never fear...there's still hope!

First things first...regardless of what her father says, child support is for the parent, and it is to help cover the expenses associated with raising a child. It is not spending money for the child. Use it as you see fit to cover the expenses you have.

Now on to the harder parts. You're daughter can help you with the internet, and I would say that she must. My advice is to either cut off her funding until your needs are met, or deduct from her funds what it is costing you to pay someone else to help.

It sounds like she doesn't have any responsibilities. Teens tend to be a bit self-focused in general, but with no responsibilities things get out of hand quickly. If you choose to give her an allowance, it should be earned. Going heavy on the free material things creates a sense of entitlement, disrespect, and selfishness. Which is what you have on your hands. At this point your daughter is nowhere near equipped to head off into the world as a responsible, independent young woman. While you don't say how old she is, I am assuming that she doesn't have too much more time before she will be on her way.

Bottom line is, you have to make some changes in your approach before she is going to change anything on her end. It will not be easy. She will likely whine, complain, beg, demand and all those other delightful temper tantrum behaviors. You are going to have to hang tough in your approach.

I am working on a coaching program that might be of interest to you. Please watch the website for details toward the end of the month.

Hang in there. You have taken a big step in identifying the problem and reaching out for help. Pat yourself on the back, take a deep breath, and get ready for some changes!

by: Sunny

You're not alone. I'm a single mother of 3 teens. Their father offers the minimum required by law in the way of financial support and is physically inactive not to mention emotionally distant. Teens can be extremely selfish yielding you well worn and frustrated. I don't make much above minimum wage here in the States, but I do all I can for my teens. I sacrifice a lot, including my social life, rest and mental stability without proper recognition and appreciation at work or at home. It's very stressful. I know where you're coming from. Asking them to take almost ANY form of responsibility is like pulling teeth. Demanding any type of contribution is certainly a crime. Hold on knowing this too shall pass is all we can do. I hear it gets better. You're not alone. Stay optimistic.

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