My daughters response (pasted below) was pretty good. She loved being on the streets for 4 days. I picked her up and met with a counselor - we read the above letter together and she said she understands those are the rules…but still didn't want a curfew - at all. We agreed that we would work together to negotiate a possible extension at a later time.
Later that same day is when she was picked up for shoplifting and brought home against her will. No punishment issued other then a fine from the store and not allowed back. I felt that was sufficient humilation and have not discussed it since.
She missed her curfew this week - so that is when I issued the consequence of no car priviledges for one week. My husband was furious with me. Said she is in too fragile state of mind to issue consequences like this. He completely disagreed with my letter above - stating that it was not loving, and was sending message of conditional love. This baffles me. I feel like I was sending the opposite message "I love you, but I have rules in my house you need to live by."
Husband would be living in the apartment with her - because he cannot accept my terms. This sounds so whacky to me - but it is happening and obviously I'm desperate. My friends and family agree with me, but I really need objective advice from an expert. Below is the email my daughter sent back.
I love you guys too. Side note.. I have some packages coming to the house, could you please try and put them somewhere safe? And will you let me know when they arrive? The sale I made on etsy is a custom order, and the lady is sending me some feathers to use, I need to get to them as soon as they arrive. Thanks.
Sent: Tue, Feb 1, 2011 6:58 am
Subject: Re: about coming home
Thanks for your email. I'm so glad that you're safe and happy and having successes. i'm so glad that your willing to keep the lines of comunication open. I love you very much and I hope you can come home soon.
----- Original Message -----
To: "kaul us"
Sent: Tuesday, February 1, 2011 10:22:19 AM
Subject: Re: about coming home
email is a good idea, but I only have wifi when I'm at someones house or in a coffee shop, so text me when you get this. I'm currently sitting in Whole Foods downtown right now, I picked up breakfast here, and I just finished my entire Science class. I am doing really good, I went to work yesterday, then took the bus to school of rock, helped Linda out a bit there, did some vacuuming and cleaning, then went to band practice. Practice ran until about 10, because, *good news* we got accepted into battle of the bands!!!! We are one out of only 4 bands that made it! almost 40 bands auditioned, pretty cool I'd say. I was going to stay with Noura last night again, but since band practice ran so late, Linda took me in last night, and I stayed there, I was pretty exhausted and I fell asleep as soon as we got home. Galen had school this morning at 8, so we got up and after Linda took him to school she dropped me off at a max because I wanted to go downtown and work. So that's how I ended up here. I've been very productive, with school, and work. I also made my first etsy sale this morning! Someone emailed me and said that they thought my work was beautiful, and asked me to make them a pair of custom earrings, and they would provide the feathers even! Awesome! I'm getting 15 bucks out of it, pretty decent I'd say, for minimal work. I've been communicating with dad, so we keep in touch, and I try and let him know where I am..roughly (I move around a lot) and what the plan is, roughly. I'd like to be able to say I want to come home.. but, I have to think about it a lot. Mom, I'm really sorry for saying things that I do, and I love you all very much. I'm really happy right now though. I'm really happy living this way for a few days. I think I'm going to stay with Noura again tonight. They've been great, her dad gives me rides whenever I need them (though I try and take the bus most places, I hate having people waste gas on me...) and he'c been cooking me loads of lentil soup!! They're family said I'm welcome as long as I want to stay, haha, they even said I could stay until June! I won't of course... but it was nice. I've got so many friends who came at me with open arms. I'm in very good hands. Anyway, I have to go.. I've been here for almost 2 hours, and they only provide free wifi for 2 hours max. I'm off to NW 23rd now to check out some shops, grab some tea, and enjoy the sun. I did 5 lessons in school today =) and I did the dishes this morning. I also finished science with a B! Woo. Anyways, much love, Em.
Sent: Mon, Jan 31, 2011 11:30 am
Subject: about coming home
sometimes it's easier to talk over email then in person.
I hope you are doing alright today and that you plan to come home tonight. You know I love you and want you home. It's too soon for me to let go of you just yet.
Dad says you are afraid to come home for fear of punishment. I want to assure you I don't have punishment planned. However, you need to know that I do have boundaries and expectations of you while you live with us. Primarily, I want you to act more respectful to all of us in spite of your hormones, moods and problems. I am happy to help you sort things out - whether that means talking with Steve, or Debi, or going on meds or whatever. I don't want you saying such hurtful and desrespectul things all the time to us. It hurts every time you do. We all love you and want the very best for you. I realize our life isn't perfect. You don't have the perfect married parents, and you have a lot of emotional issues you are trying to sort out.
Every house has boundaries and rules. I need for you to agree to do your best to live within our framework: treat others' as respectfully XXXXX XXXXX can - even when on edge. Try to be courteous to Sam a little more often. Fulfill your obligations of school, job and SOR. Meet your curfew, and tell us where you are. Take initiative to do your chores without making us nag you.
I'm sorry I hurt your feelings. I'm hoping we can put all of this behind us and move forward. I want you to be free and happy. I'm anxious for you to become an adult and experience all the freedoms that go with it.
I certainly don't want you to move out before you are 18. I have hopes that you will be a kind citizen, room mate, friend and spouse. Better than I am! I think you are highly successful and radiant. I have to reign you in from time to time and I hope you understand that's my job. It's all out of love because I want you to launch successfully and prepared for the world and the best you can be.
Please come home. We'll work it through.