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Howard Wise
Howard Wise, Child Care
Category: Parenting
Satisfied Customers: 650
Experience:  Counseling with a compassionate ear and a loving heart.
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My 10 year old seems to me to have become exceedingly disrespectful/inconsiderate.

Customer Question

My 10 year old seems to me to have become exceedingly disrespectful/inconsiderate. Apart from swearing at me, yelling at me when she doesn't get her way, not doing what I ask and lying about it, she ignores things that I have communicated are important that I ask her to do.

For instance, I asked her to pay attention during the worship (singing contemporary songs/praying) at church although I let her have a comic book to read during the sermon. She blatantly ignored my reminders and read through worship.

In our family, Easter/Thanksgiving/Christmas dinner are important events. At Easter she headed out the door as I was putting dinner on the table to play with a friend. I emphasized that dinner was NOW but that I was not going to force her to have dinner with me. She left and when she returned seemed to have expevted me to wait for her (???).

I am not sure what to do!!!! Apart from issues related to developing a functioning adult out of the child, I am exceptionally hurt at how she treats me.
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Parenting
Expert:  Howard Wise replied 5 years ago.
Good afternoon,

I'm sorry to hear about the problems you are having with your daughter.

From what you have reported it's apparent that you are giving mixed messages to your daughter. For example, you asked her to pay attention in church yet you gave her a comic book to read. You told her that it's time for dinner, and then said that she is not required to sit down at the table.

You can change her behavior, however, you will need to change your behavior first. When you give your daughter a direction it must be clear and concise, and you need to be ready to follow through if she doesn't comply. There are numerous books available about parenting rebellious children. Her is a link to one of them:

I'm not surprised that you are feeling hurt by your daughter's disrespectful attitude towards you. With a little effort on your part, and with the right tools, she will be on her way to becoming your loving daughter again.
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Thank you.

I usually tell her exactly what I want her to do. The choice at dinner on this occasion arises out of the fact that holidays are an ongoing issue behaviourally - she has some issues related to being adopted that manifest themselves in misbehaviour around holidays. This weekend I told her that she had to choose if we were going to have a nice dinner celebration. She chose 'yes', so i made dinner. Then she did this. I have just partially answered my own question.... She was likely acting out the adoption issue. How I deal with adoption misbehaviour is to provide support/nurture re: her life but consequence misbehaviour as misbehaviour. Her former therapist thought this was a good plan, but it isn't, apparently, working that well.

I am hoping to increase taking rsponsibility for choices.

At church, my intention is a clear line. The worship time and sermon are separate. She usually goes out to a program during the sermon but during the worship she is supposed to attend to the service. When there is no program, as last Sunday, I let her read during the sermon (it is long...) Do you think that she cannot understand the distinction?
Expert:  Howard Wise replied 5 years ago.
Yes, that's definitely a possibility, and reading a comic book is much more fun, so she would naturally be resistant to complying with your request.
Howard Wise and other Parenting Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Thank you... This has been helpful. When I stop feeling so upset, we need to have a calm conversation about matters...............
Expert:  Howard Wise replied 5 years ago.
Very good!

Please feel free to contact me again by writing my name at the beginning of your question.
Your positive feedback will be appreciated!

Good luck.