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LicensedTherapist
LicensedTherapist, Family Counselor
Category: Parenting
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Experience:  Family Therapist, Couples Therapist
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my daughter is 19 and a freshman at college. She has straight

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my daughter is 19 and a freshman at college. She has straight As.
after being home for spring break, she left her diary. unfortunately, i
read it. in one semester, she has lost her virginity, tried marijuana and
seems to have gotten drunk on several occassions. How do I approach her?
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Parenting
Expert:  LicensedTherapist replied 4 years ago.
Hi there- I know that reading those things in her diary must have really come as a shock to you. It sounds like you're close with your daughter and that maybe you read your daughter's diary because you are feeling out of the loop since she went to college. Perhaps you feel hurt that she did not tell you these things rather than that she did them. It sounds like you are a very caring mother who really wants to keep a close relationship with your daughter.

I just wanted to reassure you that these behaviors are entirely normal for college students. Besides, maybe she will decide that she just wanted to try some things, but that they really aren't for her.

As for what to do, I would sit down and ask your daughter how college life is and really just ask a lot of questions-- ask about her friends, ask about what she does on the weekends, ask about boys. I'm not sure whether you should fess up about the diary-- i'm on the fence because I see both sides. I guess it would have to depend on your relationship. It kind of seems like you want to confess because you feel guilty. If so, then I'd say go for it and be honest with her. Tell her you're very sorry and that you only did it because you wanted to feel close to her again. Hopefully whatever you decide to do about telling her, she will take this opportunity to tell you some personal things about what has been going on. Also, if she doesn't tell you about these things, it's okay. She's becoming an independent woman and she is trying to figure out how to be an adult and have an adult relationship with her mother. If you guys were close before, she will most likely return to this close relationship once she is done trying to figure some things out.

I hope this helps you... You seem like a wonderful mother and I wish you and your daughter best of luck.
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