Setting Boundaries With Teens

Dear Sara,

I am at my wits end with my seventeen year old daughter. She is very headstrong and seems to think she is all grown up. She’s a junior in high school and has a part time job. She wanted a car because she needed transportation to her job and hates to ride the school bus. Her Dad and I helped her buy a car and she is supposed to make the payments and buy gas which leaves her with not much money left over. Without consulting us she decided to drive to Florida with her friends for fall break. We told her absolutely not. She was furious and won’t speak to us. She snuck out pretending to go to work and we had to go find her. We now have the keys to the car and she is grounded. Did we make a mistake by refusing to let her take this trip?

Dear Kristin,

You are the parents and you did your job. Don’t second guess yourself. Somewhere between the ages of thirteen and seventeen kids get the idea that they are an adult and are in charge of their own life even though you provide almost everything for them. Your daughter may not like you very much right now but that’s part of raising a child. She probably won’t appreciate your love and caring until she has a teen of her own.
Good luck.

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