Am I a failure as a mother?

@masang (295)
Philippines
May 13, 2011 8:40am CST
My eldest daughter who is already 16 years old many times hurt my feeling as a mother. She always fights me back with bad words and insulted me. She does not respect me as her mother. Many times I cried because of her ways. I was not like this to my mom. I don't know why she is like this to me. My younger daughter and my husband usually compared us to a TV series entitled Mara Clara. I was compared as Mara's character and my eldest daughter as Clara's character. At times they are all true. My eldest daughter's actuation is like that of Clara. While I am typing this, I am crying because I'm deeply hurt.
25 responses
@bingskee (5236)
• Philippines
13 May 11
being a good parent is not guarantee, that is the title of the hub i wrote one time, a part of it says: [b][i]Being a good parent is not guarantee at all. We cannot say that the child will be a respectful, responsible and morally upright individual because the parents are. There are a lot of influences. Also, the children are unique individuals themselves. I do not believe that what other people are doing must be the reason why someone is turning into a monster. It can be and it depends. It can be if a person has a weak personality. It depends if what was inflicted was irreversible. Or if it was not healed by the love, concern and affection. No amount of education breeds an exceptional or an admirable being. My children go to a prestigious school in the country. It must be good education they are gaining. But then again, good education is not a measure. How it is being understood and utilized is what makes it good.[/i][/b] therefore, be still. draw strength from the other people in your family. plan a day of talking to her, as in seriously. can you do it writing a letter to her if a conversation is not possible?
@masang (295)
• Philippines
13 May 11
Thank you so much for the advice and for the enlightenment. God bless...
@bingskee (5236)
• Philippines
13 May 11
i hope everything will be fine with you and your daughter. i can say that i survived. the house is at peace for so long a time now. not that i miss the arguments and the quarrel, it is just so peaceful... but i admit i have not forgotten.
• United States
15 May 11
At 16 we still see our children as that, children, but they view themselves as adults. They most likely don't have the maturity to make good choices for themselves all the time, but then did we ourselves always make good choices? For some children and parents the 'letting go' phase of child rearing comes in slow stages, some are calm and soothing others volatile and harsh and others it comes of a sudden, a cutting off of communication and affection. It's a tough time for parents, it's also a tough time for the kids. Each has expectations of the other, sometimes the child has expectations of denial of a privilege or refusal to attend an event, with the expectation comes the natural course of anger and disappointment, even though no question has been asked. The emotional state is one of turmoil, the child within struggling with the adult to come. The parent also has expectations, wishes, and hopes...that the child will come to them to ask advice, to accept without question denials or refusals, to be grateful that the parent cares. And sometimes the parent is so afraid of messing up it sends the child an unconscious message of fear, which confuses the child even more. Too often we expect our children to respond to us as we once responded to the authority figures on our lives, we forget that our experiences were different, and our communication skills were also. We also forget that our children aren't children any longer, they are in that no man's land of late teens, neither child nor adult yet yearning for some solid place to be. Kids today don't want to hear how it was when we were young, they want us to listen to what they are really saying under all the yelling and fighting. They think that we should somehow magically understand what is bothering them or what they fear, a fear they don't understand themselves or realize exists. Your daughter is creating a coup, she is attempting to change the order within the household, it's natural and it is unpleasant for both of you. I suggest that you ask her why she is so angry, and that if she expects your respect of her as a new adult she also show respect for your years as one. Let her know that you are willing to really hear what she is trying to say but that she too must listen. Because that is what equals do, and until she can at least attempt equality, there will be none. Some kids can learn from observation and from hearing the stories of others, but other kids have to attend the school of hard knocks to get the message through, and that is terrifying. She needs to know of your love for her, love that has few if any conditions, she does not need to know of your fears for her, because she has plenty of them for herself. Growing up is a long difficult process on you both, but one day it will be over. Your relationship will still be mother and daughter but it will be different than it has been, not better, not worse, but different.
@masang (295)
• Philippines
15 May 11
To all who responded, thank you so much. Now I'm assured that I'm not alone. I'm also thankful to all your advices. I would really reflect on them. I hope and pray that I'll be able to apply what you have said. Thanks a lot.
• United States
13 May 11
Hi masang and a warm welcome to mylot! Dear do not say to yourself that you have done anything wrong. Do say to yourself that you tried the best you could possibly do with her. However you are not done yet. Do calmly sit with her and explain that her behavior has to stop. Explain that you are only trying to convey what is right from wrong and that someday she will experience life and perhaps it will not be the way we plan. Parenting is about the hardest job I can think of and many times no matter what we do children have a mind of their own. Regardless of her behavior there has to be a set of rules. I would probably suggest to sit and speak to your husband first as to how to resolve this issue and that he has to lend some support to you also. She does not have to be a perfect child but respect is something that she must apply. Your husband should not say the comparisons in front of her as it may appear to her that he does not respect you and therefore, feel she can too. I do hope you can resolve this as she is so young and has so much life ahead of her and in the near future she will need you along the way. Do all possible not to show her that she is hurting you in anyway. If you have to cry over her actions do so in private as it appears she is fueling on your sentiments. Maybe come up with a plan that both you and your husband can agree as far as taking privileges away until she behaves. Our humble advice may not work, but at least I am glad you can come here and vent because you cannot bottle these feelings inside, as they will make you sick. Do take care of yourself and I will pray you and your family begin a healthier life together. All the best and welcome aboard!
@masang (295)
• Philippines
13 May 11
Thanks for the advice. At least now, I feel comforted.
• United States
25 May 11
Don't ever doubt your strength as a mother. Don't feel as if you have failed at any point in your life at whatever you do. Remember that God does't put more on our plate than we can handle. Your daughter is the way that she is because maybe she's crying out to you. I know it may not seem like it, but maybe she really wants a closer relationship with you but don't know how to tell you that so she lashes out. I'm not gonna use the excuse of her being in puberty cause that's not always the case. Try talking to her one on one and see if she'll open up to you. If she doesn't, don't force her. Just let her know that you're there if she needs you. I'm not saying put being a mother aside to try and be her best friend...but show her that you're an understanding person as well as a mother. You can be firm, a mother and still get your respect at the same time.
@Lexus656 (672)
• United States
23 May 11
Masang i hate to say this but me and my mother were like that for several years around that age. Now i feel horrible about it and would go back and change it if i could. However i do feel that if my mom would have listened to me really truly listened then things would hve been a lot better for both of us. Just talk to her and let her know that your there whenever she needs you. Sixteen is a hard time for a girl shes trying to figure who she is, what she wants to be, and more then likely shes very confused. Just don't take it to heart i know that's hard to do. I wish ya'll the best of luck!
@stary1 (6619)
• United States
15 May 11
You sound like a loving Mom who cares so much she is hurting herself instead of placing some of the blame where it belongs..on your daughter. Children are not always easy and can certainly try our patience. I have 2 daughters and have had more challenges with one than the other. It is just different personalities. I would not tolerate rudeness. She can't be allowed to be rude to you and maybe your husband can help out here and speak to her. Teen years are tough. I think 'this too shall pass"..there are many years ahead and while you should not tolerate rudeness, you might have to be patient with her growing up and maturing. Don't be so hard on yourself. Just do the best you can, don't tolerate rudeness, be firm and have patience and pray. God Bless you :)
@jdyrj777 (6547)
• United States
14 May 11
You are being very hard on yourself. If you were a failure as a mother all your kids would be the same as the 16 yr old. Right??? Obiously she has some issues. Probably learn from outside the home. Like peers.
@cora30 (134)
• United States
14 May 11
It is so sad and hurting hearing your woes to your daughter ,its not good she will grow up without respect on you,all i can advice to you as a mom also,is that try to talk to her in a calm way or if not on her bday try to give her a special bday card with your note telling her how much you love her and that making her feel that even if she had this attitude tell her that deep down inside her shes still a good daughter to you..and will see if it works of try to send her a text message everyday letting her know how much you loved her and know your daughter will realize it soon,just be patience....:)
@dlpierce (489)
• United States
14 May 11
You have already been given many good words of advice. I'm not sure if I can add anything better than that, but please don't blame yourself. All kids are different and some can be very hard to understand why they act the way they do. Does she also treat her dad like this? If not maybe he needs to get more involved in how she treats you.
@NYRican (82)
• United States
14 May 11
I'm a mom of four my eldest is 19 my second eldest is 15. I have been in your situation. My eldest is disrespectful to me also, although she has never cursed at me she has been disrespectful in other ways. I don't know if you're family is a blended family, but mine is. My daughter never wanted to accept my husband, because she was upset about the breakup between her dad and I. I know it's because of this that my daughter resents me and my husband and that is the root of her problem. Having a bad boyfriend come into her life brought out the worst in her. Try and speak to your daughter, find out why she's so angry and why she feels she needs to insult you. If she's being influenced by bad friends find out and try to lure her away from them without her knowing. I say without her knowing because the minute they find out they will do everything possible to do exactly what you don't want them to. Also let her know that you will not put up with it any longer and if she continues there will be consequences. Make sure you are firm and don't show her you're hurt, instead show her you're very angry and you mean business, no more miss nice guy. Make sure that some type of punishment is always given for bad behavior whether it is grounding her, taking away her cell phone or computer etc... Give her some type of chore or have her apologize to you, so she can earn back what was taken away. Or if her behavior improves then she has earned it. Now she only needs to continue good behavior in order to keep these things. It is very important that your younger daughter sees this so she knows that bad behavior is not tolerated, since younger siblings always look up to the older ones. Never blame yourself, whatever the problem may be they just need to learn how to cope with it differently, I'm still struggling with mine. I did similar things to my mom but later learned to appreciate her for everything. I've begged her for forgiveness, I still do at times and we're best of friends. You're not alone, there's plenty of good parents fighting the same war. Stay strong!
@sam3m1 (190)
• United States
14 May 11
if you have treated your daughter respectfully, and it seems that since you are concerned about her, you have, you shouldn't take responsibility for her actions towards you. teens have emotional swings and periods of rebellion tied to the hormonal changes they are going through. all of us have experienced the same kind of thing as we've grown up. this will change as she matures, however, you should be reacting to her as you normally would since your attitude toward her will help teach her that bad behavior will not be accepted. do not question your being a good mother.
• Philippines
14 May 11
your'e daughter needs attention, give her the tender loving care she wanted the most.. she wants to be appreciated. don't feel bad coz when your daughter grows older she can realized her mistakes, and she will know how much u sacrifice for her..
• United States
14 May 11
Your not a bad mom. The teen years have to be the most difficult time as they transition from child to adulthood. i honestly wouldn't let her get away with talking to you like that. When she talks to you like that make her go to her room right after school for talking to you like that. If it's not a school night make her go to her room for talking to you that way. She can come out when she is ready to apologize. Even at that age kids need discipline. Society these days does make it easy these days to discipline.s me when kids talk bad to their parents. Back in my days we would get smacked for back talking. My 3 rd old yesterday thought she was going to back talk me but I showed her she wasn't.
@GemmaR (8521)
14 May 11
You are not a failure as a Mother, but some teenagers don't realise how much they're hurting their parents. I love my parents to bits, and would never want to do anything to hurt them, however I know that I did when I was younger. There's just something about teenage hormones which causes us to hurt our parents even though we don't mean to. You should look forward to the future when your daughter grows up and realises that she's been out of order.
@bretay61 (723)
• United States
14 May 11
I wouldn't want to go back through the teenage years again. Difficult ages. I was lucky with my daughters,had no problems. The oldest one backtalked a few times,but never harsh. My youngest one is 30 and we can't get along now. Teenage years were fine,but now not so good. She can blow up at the drop of a hat whenever she comes around. Which by the way is not often. She acts like she's mad at us about something. You know with kids.
@oninomar (506)
• Philippines
14 May 11
Hi masang, All mother here on here is responsible.. And also, you are not a bad mother, as in your story the only problem is your eldest daughter right? So it means that your younger daughter has a good attitude, It means that you have no deficiency in raising your children. Maybe She was acting like that because of the many peer that surrounds her, many bad influence friends ( i think so).. The character and the attitude shown by your daughter is really a bad bad thing, She must respect you always, you gave her life and you take good care of her, she must appreciate that things.. Maybe your daughter has many problems facing now and she was hesitate to open that to you? why don't you ask her what is her problem? Maybe you have lack of communication with her, also understand her, try to understand as you can... Also, sometimes many eldest child in the family get jealous with some attentions that you give to them.. Maybe you give more attention with your younger daughter?? She feel that you sometimes ignore her, So as a child, to have an attention of everyone, she must do somethings.. Maybe she think that if she will be bad to you, you will give to her the attention she needs... Don't worry a child will be always good, as a mother treat her/him good..
@sunny5u (2072)
• India
14 May 11
Hi masang, why do you think you are a failure, comeon give up your negative thoughts, if you doesn't like the way she is being or so, then you think in her way, whats wrong in that, try to be her friend, and so she may share her problems or happiness with you, if not just talk to her in a pleasant way , and explain your problem, but don't cry , crying will not take your pain or solve your problem.
@casualkT (141)
• Canada
14 May 11
I don't think you failed. Although with the picture that is expressed it seems as if she does not respect you like a mother. The question is why and I'm thinking that you didn't hurt her in a any way so that is why you wrote this being a child myself I don't see how much more caring a mother is because I didn't felt like I was being cared for .. think to when you were a child , did you want the independance and did you understand your mother. She doesn't understand you it seems
@tlb0822 (1412)
• United States
13 May 11
It is sad to here that you and your eldest do not get along. Sometimes the reason that you may not be getting along is because you to are so a like. It is probably just a phase that she is going through and she will grow out of it. It takes awhile for children to understand why there parents do certain things, and that we just do it out of love. I now realize why my mother and father made certain rules, and were so protective, now that I have children of my own. It may be rough now but trust be.. soon she will see that all you have done is loved her, and that she will appriciate it in the end. Best of luck.
• United States
13 May 11
Not a bad mother but maybe one a little too easy on her teen-ager. I have a 16 boy, which is totally different than having a 16 girl but what I do is lay down the law. She doesn't respect you and has the nerve to be insulting to the women who gave her life. In my opinion I would be making arrangements to send her away to school or some sort of boot-camp, she couldn't live in my house. I like you am a good daughter to my mother and I know I deserve the same and so do you. A bad mother is someone that puts things in front of her children. Doesn't proved for them to the best of her ability and doesn't protect her children with her life. If you do all these things your a good mom. Don't be down on yourself