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Dr. Shirley Schaye
Dr. Shirley Schaye, Doctor
Category: Parenting
Satisfied Customers: 1673
Experience:  PhD-Psych; Certif. Psychoanalyst NPAP& NYFS; Memb.APsaA;IPA; Pub.Author; Teach/Supervise Therapy
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My 19 y/o moved home after one semester of college. She is

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My 19 y/o moved home after one semester of college. She is now attending community college and living at home. She works part time and is a good student. The problem is she is with her 23 y/o boyfriend all the time! She is at his house everynight until curfew(he also lives at home). She would like to "sleep over". I say no, and can't explain why. Help me, please!
Hello and Thank You for using Just Answer. What you need to discuss with your daughter is that as long as she is living under your roof, she must abide by your rules...plain and discussion. If she had her own place, she could come and go to her liking. You must keep boundaries in place. 19 is too young to be spending the night at her boyfriend's house. She is right out of high school. Maybe wait at least she is more mature and responsible around the age of 21. What is the true point of the sleepovers? It really is not a good idea. She spends enough time over at his house anyway. Unless she plans on moving in with him and supporting herself, keep telling her that the sleepovers are off limits. She is still under your authority as an adult child living in your home.


Have a great day!
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
All of this I understand, and have made my point very clear with her. The problem is the "why mom". I can't answer that other than its my house and my rules. She wants to negotiate and spend one night a week sleeping over. I think she's having a tantrum. I need more advise than to just say no.
Your daughter is an adult and is already sexually active. She is an adult and is struggling to fit in as an adult living at home as well as doing what she pleases. She needs to respect you as the adult and your expectations.
The frustration is occurring because she is living at home and you will not let her sleep over. If she wants to do what she wants with her boyfriend she is obviously not respecting th house rules . She may feel that since she is legally an adult, she has more freedom and is entitled to do what she wants. If she does not respect the rules that you have established, you must enforce consequences. Make her have an earlier curfew. Etc.
Talking to her or reasoning with her and her boyfriend may be necessary. At 19, she wants to act like an adult but must rely on you for everything like paying the bills. Maybe she should start contributing financially to the household.. She is simply trying to satisfy her own needs and thinking about herself. You must talk to her and reach an agreement that you both can live with. The more you prevent her from sleeping over, the more apt she will be to sneak and do it.
I do believe the main problem is that your daughter had so much freedom when she was not living at home. She wants that same type of freedom since she has moved back home but it is not possible. She should not even be questioning you. If she wants the same freedom, moving out should be her option if you cannot reach an agreement. Do not let her manipulate you. You are still the authority figure.
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Relist: Answer quality.
I feel the answer was just stating the obvious, not necessarilly helping me deal with the situation. I have already said no to her, it's her persistance with the "why" that I don't know how to answer her.
Thank you for contacting Just Answer. You are dealing with a difficult stage of her life. I don't, of course, have to tell you that. I hear your request over and over. More and more kids because of the economy are moving back home even after college.

I think that it is important that you treat her as the adult that she is. I'm glad to hear that you understand that she is sexually active with her boyfriend and that you are accepting of that. She would just do it behind your back anyway if you didn't accept it.

Let me before I tell you what you should say to her about why she can't sleep over at her boyfriend's house every night ask you a question. What happened that she moved home after one semester of college. Please give me the details of that.
Anyway, in the meantime before even knowing the answer to that I would tell her that you can't sleep over at your boyfriend's every night because we all have responsibilities and obligations and while you are living here with us I am going to make sure that you are fulfilling your obligations. You are working and please do not forget that you are a student and should be spending time studying. I would agree to her having date nights on Friday night and Saturday night but during the week she has to fulfill her responsibilities.

Anyway, do tell me why she left college after one semester so that we may continue with our chat. Just put Dr. Shirley Schaye before your response and I will be the one to answer.
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

Dr. Shirley Schaye,


She left college because she was home sick, disliked her roommate, made no attempt at making no new friends so was a little lonely. She would call home and cry for the first 2 months of the semester. Then it stopped and it became more about coming home to her boyfriend them missing her family and being home sick. Let me add in here, that the boyfriend spend every weekend that he could in her dorm with her.


She is in college, just locally and living at home.

Ok, that helps me see things very clearly. So what you are describing tells me that she was not able to make a healthy separation and now again wants to spend ALL her time with her boyfriend. That is not a good track. So, again, if she asks you why she can't spend every night with her boyfriend tell her again what I have said about school, studying and work. If she pushes it further then and only if she pushes it further then I would bring up what she did about leaving college to be with her boyfriend. She cannot focus her entire life on only him.
What college did she leave?
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

So if I understand your answer, I need to talk to her about prioritizing the things in her life. I believe they may be different from what I want for her. (college, job, friends and family, social life with boyfriend). I then need to accept the decisions she makes from these priorities, as she is making them as an adult. If she chooses the boyfriend over college, I will need to find a way to accept that this will be her choice, and as her mother explain the consequences of postponing an education, ect..


Thank you for your help, I have a clear picture of how to approach this in a manner that will give me the peace I need. Hopefully no more sleepless nights!

Yes, that is very important. You are right that technically she is an adult and you can't make her do what she wants but that doesn't mean that as her parent you don't impart the values in life that you think are important. AND .... moreover, while she is living in your home and therefore you are partially supporting her then you have to impose your values. Yes, at her age it goes in one ear and out the other --- meaning that they don't listen to what you have to say but trust me eventually they do. In other words, your job as a parent is to impart your values so that you set your children in the right direction.
I'll pause here and await your response to see if there is anything you would like to add so that we may continue with our chat. Do add whatever you want and then when I check back I'll respond. If you have other questions, don't hesitate to ask. If I have answered your questions, please click on ACCEPT and leave feedback. Bonuses are always appreciated. You can always ask more questions even after you have clicked on Accept. Just put Dr. Shirley Schaye before your response and I will be the one to respond.
Dr. Shirley Schaye, Doctor
Category: Parenting
Satisfied Customers: 1673
Experience: PhD-Psych; Certif. Psychoanalyst NPAP& NYFS; Memb.APsaA;IPA; Pub.Author; Teach/Supervise Therapy
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