And Then There is Karma.........

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by Hound dog, Jun 20, 2013.

  1. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    It might take time but eventually you reap what you sow.........

    Kayla is turning difficult child.......wild child, disrespectful, entitled, unappreciative, lying, sneaking...........

    Tonight when speaking with an extremely stressed Katie I got the impression that Kayla *might* have an online "relationship" with an older male. It was sort of like Katie was trying to tell me she caught her at it without really coming out and saying that. Know what I mean?? Seems Kayla has at least one fb acct her mom didn't know about until now. More likely 2 as I know about one Katie doesn't know about I just can't for the life of me recall the weird name she used for it. (topped off by the fact Kayla can't spell right either)

    Kayla begged/demanded a cell phone for her birthday. We warned Katie about buying her one since she won't leave her parents alone and loses it but they bought her a cheap one that you have to load the minutes. Kayla used up the minutes in 2 days.........talking to some boy that katie seemed to be hinting was not a boy.....refer to the above paragraph. lol Add to this katie was retrieving phone numbers from her phone that no longer works and she found a disturbing text written by kayla to this "boy maybe not a boy" that was not appropriate for a 13 yr old to be thinking let alone writing. When katie demanded kayla return her phone she told her mom she lost it at her friends house. katie has reportedly turned the girls room upside down but not found the phone. She doesn't quite seem to believe her.

    Katie is scared. And I don't think she is scared simply because Kayla has a fb acct she is not allowed to have and is talking to some boy her age. I heard fear in her voice tonight.

    Let's just put it this way..............Katie is so scared she not only admitted they had internet but she created a new fb account to talk to me and in hopes of somehow being able to detect if Kayla creates a new one. Which of course revealed the fact she lied when she said she got rid of the computer after Fred died over the whole M thing. Of course this stuff I already knew so I really don't care one way or the other. But it puts a new level of seriousness to it because she knows she is admitting she lied. Know what I mean??

    Katie is stressed to the max and scared to death, not to mention at her wits end as to what to do with the child who once was her "good" kid. Nichole and I are not the least bit surprised. The extended family actually expected the current behavior to surface. Although it worries us as much as it does katie.

    Time is relative when it comes to karma. And rarely does karma seem to care much if you've since tried to turn your life around.

    Eleven years ago Katie and M took Kayla 2, and Alex 1 and took off to Mo with only a nasty letter that arrived in the mail some weeks later. An impulsive decision of an immature 22 yr old cost her children severely over the 6 yrs they were out of contact. And even during the 3 yrs we had contact before they showed up on my doorstep.

    Katie tried to correct that mistake when she returned about 3 yrs ago (come oct). Active parenting didn't truly start until they moved into the apartment that following April. It was better than no parenting at all but it was inconsistent with no defined rules with the impulse to spoil children they had never had an opportunity to spoil before..........Progressed slowly into more consistent active parenting. And both Katie and M have improved quite a lot which can be seen to some degree in the kids behavior.

    Except you can't suddenly start parenting a ten year old after the life Kayla lived and not expect difficult child issues. Which is why the extended family expected this, and has for some time.

    Kayla is still my Kayla in her heart. I still see the little girl I knew all those years ago when she looks at me.

    But Kayla is deeply angry. I know she is deeply angry at her mom. I know there is anger for Katie's biomom. I think there is even anger toward M, although she does love him and feel affectionate toward him. I see no real love or affection for katie or her biomaternal grandmother. There is no respect for any of the adults in her household. I think Kayla has begun to realize her Dad is not like "other dads"

    Finally being able to live a more "normal" life has become a two edged sword. While it is good for Kayla to see that other adults don't behave as her parents have and learn what "normal" has also shown her exactly what they failed to provide for her during her childhood. Not just the basics such as a home, food, clothing.......or even some luxuries like birthday parties and actual presents and such........but rules and boundaries and love and attention. The anger has been building as the realization has sunk in.

    So while some of this is typical teen behavior of testing boundaries, especially new ones........a lot of it is centered in anger and I know is going to get much worse before it gets better.

    I talked to Katie for quite a while tonight. But I just really could not bring myself to mention Kayla's anger or that some of this is stemming from the past. I know that Katie is trying hard at least on the discipline aspect and it is hurting her that she can't seem to either get the respect of her children or their obedience, especially at home. The kids behave around us because if the family is together.......well, an adult sees a child do something they don't wait for the child's parent to correct the behavior. My kids were raised that way, my grandchildren are raised that way. Boundaries were set the moment Katie's kids returned. While their parents may not be consistent with clear rules, we are. It took them mere days to realize this and they don't test the boundaries with us.

    Well, Katie also talked to Nichole about this. And Nichole is one to say what she thinks. And so she just bluntly told katie that Kayla is angry and why. But that Katie has to be consistent now, regardless, because those boundaries need to be there and Kayla has to know she has to stick to them. Next thing Nichole knew katie was on a long apology about taking the kids back to Mo and what a horrible decision that had been.........and well..........yeah. I know that katie is truly sorry for that. I know she deeply regrets her actions. I know that now what she did hurts her perhaps more than it hurt us.

    Because now she has to face the reality of what she did to her children even though she didn't mean to hurt them. She has to deal with the effect it had on them, not just by losing their extended family but the life they led while away from us. And honestly? We don't even know many of the details of that life, so lord only knows what all that involved.

    Sadly, while Katie loves Kayla and Alex, she never formed a maternal bond with either of them for whatever reason. As babies/toddlers it was more she tolerated them than had any genuine affection for them. I have yet to see any evidence that has changed. Katie is not much closer to Evan. The kids do not that I've ever seen, get her actual attention. I know that if they are home from school........she is usually in bed. If behavior is off the wall........she gets a migraine and goes to bed. This gfgness with Kayla has had her in bed 90 percent of the last few days. Given the behavior ect she is probably overwhelmed......and retreats to her room more than actually has anything wrong. This is habitual behavior throughout the kids childhood. It has not yet changed.

    This part I dunno what to do about. I can help her be more consistent and reinforce that what she is doing is right ect. But how do you tell your kid that maybe if they bothered to spend actual TIME with their children it might make all the difference in the world?? That her retreating to the bedroom is not helping because it is not for a Time is for hours upon hours.

    I really hope, no I'm praying Kayla has not managed to get herself involved with an adult male. Good lord. I thought we might at least have a couple of years before that battle came up.
  2. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    Katie is just now realizing that spoiling the kids rotten once they got into the apartment was a terrible mistake.

    Kayla has acquired a huge sense of entitlement and the anger in my opinion is making that even worse. Katie and M's income at the moment is very very low due to little or no work hours for M. It was a big deal them getting that phone for her even if it was a cheap one. Obviously she didn't appreciate the gift, had no respect for the gift. I told Katie if she gave the child another phone she was just plain crazy. (I would never have given her one to begin with, especially at her age) My kids, even working, had to wait until they were 18 for such a privilege........and I certainly did NOT pay for it.

    Kayla also demands (not asks) for the pricey name brand clothes. Now Kayla has no clothes shortage going on, she even has her friends passing on outgrown clothes to her (which are those name brands). In fact she has sooooo many clothes she can change up to 5/6 times a day without blinking. Often more. Laundry is a big deal to her parents. They pay 4.00 for a single load in the washer.....then there is the cost of the dryer........and because kayla is changing so much she is always "out" of clean clothes. Katie says she is having to do several loads up to 3 times a week. I told her to remove half of Kayla's wardrobe and lock it up (she has a storage closet she can do this with). When she runs out of clothes she can wear "dirty" clothes until the weekly laundry day. If she doesn't like it, she can stop changing her clothes so often. Good grief! I told Katie during the summer my kids were required to wear an outfit twice, 3 times if it didn't look dirty or smell of sweat. Having to pay for your laundry is expensive without Kayla actively working to make it worse while she plays the role of diva. omg

    And that is something else....... Kayla plays this role of the little diva. Does not help that Daddy will spoil her out of her mind given half the chance. I have yet to witness once where her Dad could actually manage to tell the child no about something she wants.

    Kayla did discover disrespecting her mother didn't go over well at the yard sale with her extended family. She didn't repeat the performance at the following family gathering.

    Kayla loves Art. If anything is her "thing" that would be it. I do all I can to encourage her. In fact her birthday presents are canvases, a real easel, some good books on sketching ect. I've been giving her quality supplies for a while. If I had the money I would enroll her in the summer art program at the college for kids. But it isn't cheap and I have no extra cash right now.

    Katie is not doing too bad with discipline. I just can't quite seem to get her to take the hint that it can't just be about discipline. You have to counter that with some attention, affection.......for balance. Goes along with the whole you can't just criticize, you have to balance it with genuine praise as well. As far as I know, katie doesn't seem to do anything really "fun" with Kayla like cooking or make up or hair styles or whatnot that she would enjoy at this age.
    Lasted edited by : Jul 10, 2013
  3. Hound - This is a bad situation. I am glad that Katie has cracked down and removed all the social privileges at this point. She needs to reign Kayla in.

    I have been reading a great book and it says in the book that parents should admit their mistakes to their children and apologize for them. It doesn't make them bad parents but acknowledges that they are not perfect, they make mistakes and that they are learning to do better. It acknowledges the hurt and anger the child feels. I think that is important in this situation that K and M apologize to all their children for the mistakes that they have made. The book is called When Parents Hurt by Dr. Joshua Coleman and he has a website with articles on it as well. You could probably find a good way to word the apology on the website without having to buy the book. There is a way to do it that still lets the child know that you are the parent and are still to be respected but that you are mature enough to admit you've made mistakes and are sorry for them.

    *I sure hope this works out for the best and Kayla doesn't start to go on a difficult child slide. Fingers and toes crossed and prayers said.
  4. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    That is very true WTWS.

    I have no idea if Katie and M have ever apologized for past behavior.

    But I do know Katie knows if I make a mistake when it comes to my kids I am big on apologizing, I always have been Just because someone is a parent doesn't mean they're infallible. Plus, I wanted to teach my kids that it is ok to own up to the mistakes they make and do what they can to fix them, learn from them.

    However, I do see where she may feel to do so at this point in her parenting might backfire on her. Kayla has a tendency to throw up the past as a way to manipulate/guilt her parents into getting her way or what she wants.

    Katie is going to call me tonight so hopefully I'll get a chance to talk to her about such things.
  5. 1905

    1905 Well-Known Member

    I disagree on taking away all her social activities, honestly. I understand the problem, but she's angry and this will only make it worse. The way to cure that anger in her heart (possibly) is to give her love and attention and to make her feel cherished...etc. Katie doesn't seem to have that in her.

    When I was 13 my parents grounded me indefinitely. At that point I didn't care what they said and now could do whatever I wanted since I had nothing to lose anyway. That was the point they had absolutely no control. This went on until I was 15 and became a runaway. I really wasn't a difficult child but they made me feel as though I were, I couldn't be a normal child in that house.I think taking away Kayla's social life will force her to become even more sneaky and lose whatever respect there is left. I feel bad for Kayla. She doesn't get attention at home and now some older man will give her some, she needs attention at home, you're exactly right.
  6. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful


    As I understand it, loss of all her social activities is a temporary situation. A safeguard measure. I'm going to attempt to guide Katie with this whole trust issue if I can. I have told Katie after a short time she will have to provide Kayla with means to earn back that trust, while being on top of safety issues as the parents.

    Kayla for years has had too much responsibility piled upon her for her age........such as caring for her brothers, helping her dad with shopping, and running the household to some degree during her mom's retreats to the bedroom for whatever reason. They were hard on her when she of course had issues living up to those over the top expectations. While Katie and M backed off on this since they arrived here...........Kayla remembers all too well. Know what I mean?? I can see Kayla's point of view on this.

    The attention / feeling valued at home issue is critical. I'm just not quite sure how to approach Katie about the subject.
  7. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    I am sorry. I think many of us have been waiting to hear about this for quite some time now. It seems almost inevitable given all that those kids have been through. It still hoovers though.

    I think you need to be flat out honest with Katie about doing things with Kayla that are fun to build the bond that is not there. Do they have the state kids insurance? I am sure they qualify and hopefully a therapist could be found and would help through that program. If nothing else, contact the school counselor - even over the summer if possible. Look up the name on the school website and then google them and/or look on fb for them.

    I think that at least looking through Parenting Your Teen With Love and Logic might give you ideas for how to talk to Katie about this. The book Star likes so much, "How to Talk So Your Kids Will Listen" or something along those lines might also help. Katie could probably use the books in a major way, but also if you looked through one at the library or read parts at a bookstore and it might give you some ideas for talking about the issue. I know you cannot buy them. Go to a Barnes and Noble and sit and read them. I worked for them and part of the corporate goals are to get people to go into the stores and read their books. We were told that a customer can come in and use it like a library and that is a WONDERFUL thing. There were always LOTS of students around reading. NOT skimming or browsing, reading the books and taking notes.

    Given that this is something they want, let them have it. Go and read if the library doesn't have the books and/or you cannot find them online. They may give you some ideas to help with this mess.

    I HATE that Kayla has to go through this, and I hope and pray wth all of my being that she is NOT involved with an older man, and that her parents can somehow form that bond and manage to help her through this.

    It truly svcks that Kayla has to pay this price for her parents' gfgness during her life up until now. It is sooooo hard to watch, esp when you love and care about the entire family.