Adult daughter/rape victim/constant lying


New Member
Not sure where to turn for help. My daughter it can appear-- has it all together. Lives in NYC, great job but lies constantly and now she has basically withdrawn from life. Taken leave of absence, not paying her rent. The lying and deceit has been going on for a few years and I guess we all brush it under the rug when she uses our redit card without permission. We make her pay it back but then soemthign happens again.. she finally told us last year that she was raped in college (about 4 years ago). Is the lying because of the affects of rape or something else. How do we handle this as parents. she needs help. she did go to a cousnelor for 6 motnhs and it really helped her & she moved out and was doing great. then the last 2 months -the lying & deciet started. Now she left town and went to the beach and got a 2 week leave of absence. All not typical & its caused a tremendous amount of worry & stress on the rest of the fmaily.


Well-Known Member
First off, as your daughter appears to be an adult, this should be in the Parents Emeritus forum which is for adult children. A moderator will probably move it for you so don't worry about it as this happens all the time.

As for your daughter, is she acknowledging that she has a problem? Is she seeking help? The problem with the adult children is that, because they are adults, we cant force them to go to a counselor or doctors appointment. The lying, stealing, not paying bills, missing work, all sound like she might be self medicating with illegal drugs. She could just be having a tough time dealing with the memories but the stealing tends to be a good indicator of substance abuse.

Talk to her and try to get her to go to counseling but understand that if she wont go, you are powerless. I hate to say this because it can sound a bit cold blooded, but if she wont listen to you, you may need to detach from her a bit and let this run its course. If she is having substance abuse issues it will take her hitting rock bottom and deciding to reach out for help herself. This isn't easy, I can tell you from personal experience, but you CAN survive it with help. This board is a good place to start as there is a wealth of information and experience here. Get counseling yourself.

Sorry you had to come here but welcome to our crazy little corner of the internet!

PS-Nobody here has all the answers. One of our favorite sayings about the advice offered is to take what you want/need and leave the rest.


Well-Known Member
My oldest was raped and it wasn't a date rape and she was a chlid. She doesn't lie or steal. Sounds like your daughter has a longstanding history of this and maybe she lied about the rape too. If it's true, has she entered into voluntary therapy? She won't get help unless she goes, but you can't make her. I think these are two seperate issues.

I agree that Parent Emeritus is the best place for you since Daughter is an adult. THis forum is for minor kids.

Just my two cents. I would have called the cops on her. No consequences, then it keeps on happening. And when she starts stealing from others, they won't show her any such kindness. I'd change my credit card numbers.

Drugs maybe?


Well-Known Member
PTSD can be a bit**. And very often co-morbid with addiction issues and other mental health issues.

I of course do not know, if your daughter would have PTSD, but it is very common with rape victims. My son developed PTSD because of some very traumatic events in his life and it has been real roller-coaster ever since (though he had issues even before.) Addiction, stealing, better times, worse times, self-harm, depression, anxiety, behavioural issues, anger, dissociation, you name it. And with him, there are big differences between times when he is doing better and times when he is in crisis.

And he is willing, and even determined to work at getting better and accepts treatment. Still, far from smooth sailing.

Based on my experience, if your daughter's issues started after the time she says she was raped, it is very likely rape may have caused her PTSD and that is a cause for her behaviour right now. And unfortunately all kinds of addictions (both substance abuse and behavioural addictions like eating issues, sex addiction, gambling etc.) are very commonly part of the mess.

I don't have the right answers for situations like that, but in m7y experience, and in our son's case, even though he has been willing to get help, he has needed a lot of support and practical help from us. The whole thing, how to get help, which kind of help, how to finance it, the whole mess, is not easy to navigate and often people with mental health issues are not the best persons to manage all that on their own.


Well-Known Member
Now she left town and went to the beach and got a 2 week leave of absence. All not typical & its caused a tremendous amount of worry & stress on the rest of the fmaily.

This isn't normal. Either there are addiction issues that have been going on for a long time, and you were not aware of it, OR... Sometimes, a trauma will trigger latent mental health issues. That is... the mental health issues may have shown up later at some point anyway, but show up "now" due to trauma.
If drugs or alcohol are involved, it makes things more difficult, because addiction alters symptoms. But if a seemly "normal" kid goes off the deep end that fast, I'd be thinking "mental health issues".