difficult child sleeping around-feeling defeated today.

hearts and roses

Mind Reader
Last night, I happened upon an open conversation in AIM that difficult child was having with this boy from school - they are both 17 and have been flirting heavily with one another for about 9 months.

The convo was very sexual in nature...there was talk of porn tapes and playing with herself and how he wants to FXXK her 'really good'....one day....maybe today when his mom is at work...oh wait! She doesn't have a car... :(...too bad. It went on and on and was just so upsetting to read!! difficult child sounded like a professional! I was speechless, really and truly.

I am feeling so defeated today. I feel like I just am not getting through to her. She doesn't seem to understand anything that I say until she's in a really bad place (always self inflicted) and then once it's over with, she's right back to being risque and all the risky behaviors. I just don't know what else I can do at this point. She's nearing graduation and will be 18 in October. She has no immediate plans for after HS, not college lined up, nothing. She's not interested in anything except sleeping and hanging out with boys.

I am tempted to send her to live with her dad for the summer and maybe she can get a little job down there and when she returns she will be in a frame of mind to start school. The major danger of sending her there is that her father is a jerk and together they will chain smoke in his enclosed little shack with his dog that difficult child is allergic to. on the other hand, maybe it will be an eye opener for her and she will want to come home and do something with herself. I see nothing but a dead end. Perhaps an unwanted pregnancy, or a complete meltdown with her ending up in the phospital. I am at a loss.

Any advice is welcome. Thanks.


Active Member
Gosh, what a dilemma :frown: . I wish I had useful advice or some ideas to lend. Unfortunatly I haven't got a clue how to stop a teen girl who is bent on finding love in all the wrong places :frown:
I guess the piece of advice I would offer is that although you may not be able to stop what is sad behaviour on part of your difficult child, you could assist in preventing unwanted pregnancy at this time in her life by telling her that you are aware she is sexually active and you are taking her to doctor to get the Depo Provera shots. I think so many girls "miss a pill" when on birth control tablets, either by accident, laziness or intent on having a "oops pregnancy". With the shot, you can keep track of when next shot is due and appointment time to go get it, and although it would do nothing to stop difficult child from behaving this way or to stop potential STD's, at least there is a chance to stop the pregnancy issue.
I'm sorry you are dealing with this :frown:


Well-Known Member

I'm with mattsmom regarding the birth control. If difficult child is bent on being sexually active/promiscuous, there is not much you can do since she's pretty much old enough to make her own choices.

I imagine, were I in your shoes, I would reiterate the birth control conversation, as well as condoms for the sexually transmitted stuff.

Perhaps seeing where going now where fast will get her while spending time with her dad will open her eyes. Or, it could backfire and she will end up wanting the nothing life.

Any way that you could tell her once graduation happens she'll have to get a job so she can contribute to the household?


hearts and roses

Mind Reader
Thanks mm27 - I suggested the shot, but her gyno said it may not be agreeable with her BiPolar (BP) behaviors. IOW, she said it could cause her moods to be even worse and more erratic. Right now I watch her take her BCP every night and I will even wake her up to take it if she forgets. Ugh - it's SUCH a pita because I shouldn't have to do that. She should be taking her medications on her own without me constantly having to dogwatch her. I also suggested the Nuva ring thinking that it's in for the month and she'd only have to remember it once a month. I was even considering the norplant thing (little sticks that are placed under the skin) but since she's a skin picker, she'd probably pick them out.

Thanks for the support. I will revisit the shot idea with her gyno at her next appointment, which I think is next month.


Active Member
First - when they become sexually active, especially mid to late teens, you can't stop them, short of a chastity belt. And even then, they'll get inventive.

We've been there twice now. Both times, she didn't tell us when she should have. With easy child it was a Urinary Tract Infection (UTI) that tipped us off and I ticked her off for not talking to me about it so I could talk to her about sexual responsibility.

With easy child 2/difficult child 2, we caught them in the act very early on, so she got the talk from us early.

What we did from there - we sat them down and talked to them about taking responsibility for their sexual health, as well as taking emotional responsibility for what this can do to them and the boys they're sleeping with. First, was to make sure they went on the Pill, AND took it properly. They had to understand that getting pregnant too young for their body was not good for them or for the baby. I also talked to them about the risk of HPV and cervical cancer - a girl whose first sexual encounter is before she is 17, is at a much higher risk. it's all to do with the maturing cells on the cervix - the junction between the mature cells and the immature cells is where a lot of cervical cancers start; these cells are much more vulnerable.

I made sure we had plenty of condoms, I showed them where we keep them. Of course, this process also means they have to acknowledge that their parents are also sexual creatures - this can sometimes be enough to put them off the idea of sex being wild, exciting and forbidden fruit.

Sexual health also requires a Pap smear early on, so as to provide a baseline for later examinations. If a girl is prepared to let a boy do what he wants to do with sex, then she should be OK with letting a doctor have a look and take a swab.

Regular breast exams should be happening anyway, even without sex. This is also part of being responsible. She should learn to examine herself regularly.

Emotional health - sex can be a lot of fun. it can be very enjoyable. It can also be a disaster, if you do it for the wrong reasons. And if you never learn to do it for the right reasons, you're being cheated. It's sad but true, that youth is wasted on the young. They dive into sex without really knowing what to do. The girl gets left high and dry, the boy gets a brief enjoyment without considering the partner or the sharing nature of the act. The girl knows there should be something more and goes looking for it. If there is no sound relationship backing any of this, then sex becomes perfunctory and meaningless. Such a waste of what can be (and should be) so enjoyable when shared properly between two people who really care deeply about one another and who have taken the time to get to know each other first.

Neither partner should be having sex because of social pressure. Unfortunately, this happens too much. Also, a lot of girls get pressured into oral sex because the boys expect it. This expectation, imposed on girls in this way, is the ultimate exploitation of women and is very degrading. The way they coerce girls into this is appalling. If your daughter has willingly chosen to have sex and is apparently enjoying it, then that is one blessing - at least she's not being coerced. Let's hope. Because frankly, a relationship with the sort of boy who feels that this sort of coercion is perfectly acceptable, is doomed to make her miserable. She is better off a social outcast than a doormat. Worse than a doormat - all that gets wiped on a doormat is shoes (feel free to use that line). No girl deserves to be treated with such disrespect and any boy who does so is not deserving of respect, nor is he worthy of her sexual favours or her affection.

Also, with sex - the first time for either can be emotionally binding. If one partner is not serious, the other can be left emotionally devastated. In an immature person this can lead to some really bad social situations including stalking, various forms of violence and jealous rages. Not good. So casual flirtation is to be discouraged in any person who really cares about others. Simply put, it can hurt too much. Some girls love having this kind of power, but they have to understand, to use this power is cruel. And it will generally backfire on them, badly.

Basically, sexual activity has to be accompanied by sexual responsibility. If they want the adult pleasures, they have to be prepared (both partners) to take the adult responsibility.

You can't stop them. We tried - husband & I took turns standing guard over easy child 2/difficult child 2's bedroom. But we couldn't stay there all night. And we had to recognise - even if we did, all we would do was prevent them having sex while we were there and able to stand watch. As soon as one of us left the house, or they did (to go for 'a walk', maybe) we knew they'd be at it like rabbits.

All you can do is accept you've done your best. From here you have to leave the door open to communication, at least. if you try to give ultimatums, stand your ground, insist that no sex is going to happen under YOUR roof, then you are shutting off communication at a time when they need it most.

When easy child got the Urinary Tract Infection (UTI), she delayed telling me, so it was actually quite bad when we made our dash to the ER. I said to her, "Would you rather have ended up with kidney damage, than tell me? I'd rather know, so I can help you. It's your life, your decision to have sex, you now have to follow through and take responsibility, because your body is going to insist on it."
Failure to be responsible about sex can lead to all sorts of problems, including pregnancy. Keeping the communication open means fewer mistakes and more chance to keep the fallout to a minimum. After all, what is you ultimate goal? To see her as a happy, well-adjusted, independent and productive adult, isn't it? An early pregnancy is not good for this prospect. Neither are serious health problems caused by her having to be secretive.

Your relationship with her has just moved into a new area, where she still needs you to teach her how to be responsible and appropriate. It's hard to do it, but the best outcome needs you to be open and accepting. Not easy. But frankly, what choice do you have?


hearts and roses

Mind Reader
Thanks Sharon,

difficult child knows that she will be responsible for contributing towards her auto insurance initially. We really haven't looked much past graduation with her since it's been tentative at best as to whether or not she will actually graduate in June. So, for now, we mainly have our sights on getting that completed. We've discussed some of her options for after graduation, namely work this summer full time if possible, take a class in either Art-Drawing or Writing at the local community college and then make some decisions concerning college or tech school for a start date in January 2008. We're taking it slow because I do not feel difficult child can be pushed into attending college full time - not only will she fail but she will waste my money. Going slowly is the best way to deal with difficult child and major change.

Spending time with her dad could be VERY risky as, like you said, she may enjoy the nothingness of being with him. Or, on the other hand, she may miss 'routine and normal' and decide to come home. Without a doubt, we will present that certain conditions be understood and met should she decide to come home. The obvious first is she must work and go to some type if school at least part time, plus adhere to our house rules, which have always been reasonable and fair. I guess I will have to have a conversation with her father now - ugh.

Thanks again.

hearts and roses

Mind Reader
Oh Marg, thank you for your post. We have totally and consistently covered our bases in regards to discussions about sex, thier emotional and physical health, birth control, std's, HPV, Urinary Tract Infection (UTI)'s, condoms, etc. We've talked and talked and talked since my girls were very young. They've always been aware of their bodies and what they are capable of, personal hygience, periods, etc. EVERYTHING. There is definitely no lack of discussion about sex in our house. I even bought condoms (H and I do not need them) and kept the box in the hall closet. easy child refused to use them and her boyfriend bought thiers because easy child felt that then we would know when they were having sex. difficult child, on the other hand, stockpiled them in her backpack & purse and gave some away to friends! She just told me the other day that she has a latex allergy. WTH?? I almost died laughing, but instead I will buy those other kind that are not latex. Jeesh.

difficult child has been on the pill for 2 years now. She told me the first time she had sex, within a couple of hours in fact. She KNOWS everything there is to know about taking care of her body and BC, yet, she throws caution to the winds and is reckless. She seems to think that as long as she takes the pill, nothing can hurt her. She's had the HPV shots, her third one is due August.

We've done all we can to protect her and teach her, etc., and I know that I've done my best in this regard. Apparently, I've done something right in this regard as easy child is the polar opposite in her ideals about her personal sexual relationship with her boyfriend. easy child is horrified by difficult child's behavior and attitudes.

You are right, short of a chastity belt and chaining her to the house somehow, she will find a way. She is very innovative - not original mind you, but definitely crafty. lol. I think we've done all we can in regards to teaching her. Now all that is left for us to do is preventive action. God, how I wish I could get her sterilized. I know that sounds awful, but difficult child is just the type of person to get pregnant and the last person who should be. Miraculously, difficult child always lands on her feet and comes out of horrible situations unscathed. Meanwhile, everyone around her is doing cartwheels to make sure she's okay! It's just so tiring.


Jo, no advice -- I'm not there with my kids yet -- but you should also look into the HPV vaccine if you haven't already.

Hugs to you. I know this is not easy.


Well-Known Member
Sending understanding hugs your way. I was not successful with
GFGmom, obviously, so I have no advice. It is scarey! DDD


Active Member
JO, I too have warned ant time and again about his promiscuous behavior and all it will bring him. no luck in changing him.

it has to be hard to actually have seen her conversation. then again, it opens you up to being even more aggressive in intervening in whatever way you can...even if it means a visit with dad to give her something else to think about.


Hi Jo,
nothing I said or did made any difference with difficult child 1, nor did anything her therapist said--they talked about all the emotional issues, all that stuff, blah, blah, blah...just didn't matter, she did what she wanted to do. I think she started having sex when she was about 13. She's been pregnant 3 times in the last year but miscarried each time (she was supposed to be on the pill but obviously wasn't taking it). Since mine just turned 19 and is not living with me I just say, c'est la vie and hope for the best. I hated those years before she moved out!
Thinking of you,


Well-Known Member
It is basically hold your breathe time and hope for the best possible scenario. There is just not much you can do.

I read a conversation like this on my difficult children cell phone when she was 13 years old. I almost threw up! I am sure it still goes on, but I do not see it - thank goodness. I do think sometimes it is best if we do not see these things. We only worry more with no way to do anything about it. If we never saw it - we play the same role - do nothing.


Mom? What's a difficult child?
Sorry you had to read those things and now have to worry about one more issue!!! She will learn one way or another, hopefully not the hard way. At least you are there for her, that is all you can really do, if she does want to run around... nothing could have stopped me when I was that age... so stupid.

Hang in there.

hearts and roses

Mind Reader
I am sure it still goes on, but I do not see it - thank goodness. I do think sometimes it is best if we do not see these things. We only worry more with no way to do anything about it. If we never saw it - we play the same role - do nothing.

Well, yeah, that's basically how I feel, except that it's not only what I saw in the IM - it's her overall attitude. I don't have a problem with my dds' being "sexual beings" - I am very okay and well adjusted to them transforming into adults. It's the promiscuity that bothers me. She goes through phases when she's just very sexually provocative - 'out there'. She dresses sexy (with a knockout bod to match!), talks dirty to her otherwise seemingly insignificant flirty guy friends online and just exudes this very scary persona. It really throws me for a loop, I have to say.

I KNOW my easy child is flirty and has had sex; I know she is probably more obvious with her sexuality when she's with her boyfriend and not around me. I'm okay with that. I get it. Thankfully, she doesn't shove it in my face or leave evidence to confirm it within my sight. She understands BOUNDARIES, Know what I mean??

You're right. I know I did some scary things when I was a teen and my parents were ignorant of it. Or, if they weren't, they chose to look the other way and let me work my way through it. I guess I have to choose what to react to in the future. If I can get her on more reliable BC, maybe it will be easier to not be so freaked out. I don't know. I just don't know what to think. When I think of this kid out there being her little wierd self I worry.


Active Member
Ok, given the concern with the doctor about the Depo shot, and given that pills aren't going to work if she isn't going to take them daily, and given that the Norplant would likely get picked out, I highly suggest having a doctor insert an IUD. I can't remember how long they can stay in but they are a more long term type solution and once inserted I believe it is a year or more before you need to go back to doctor for it to be replaced. I am thinking it can last even longer but don't want to misinform. Because it isn't a drug at all, it would cause zero interaction with her illness or medications, and she would be hard pressed to mess with it once it is inserted. Have you considered the new HPV vaccine? It is THE cause of all cervical cancer in women, not once ever has a person been found with cervical cancer without having HPV, and the number of women with HPV infections or previous HPV infections are higher than women without it. It won't stop other STD's if she's he$# bent on not being smart and using condoms but it could prevent something nasty like cancer. It would also open an opportunity to speak with her about sexual risks with the doctor if you were to have the first of the vaccine shots along with the IUD insertion the same day.
Just a thought you might not have considered, with the advent of the shots etc many people have forgotten about the time tested and proven effect of IUD's.


New Member
Hi Jo, I am so sorry you read that convo. My daughter is very similar. I don't know how many boys she has been with, but I'm sure it's more than I care to know. I know how you feel, you talk to them until you have no breath left, hoping to get through. Hoping something you say will turn a light bulb on for them. I have been there many, many times. While I know it is important to keep communication open and know what your children are up to, If I were you I wouldn't have read the whole thing. I have come across my difficult child's journals plenty of times, thought about opening them but I didn't. I just was too afraid of what I would find. You can only do so much. We as parents, even parents of easy child children can only give them advice, teach them right from wrong and pray they make the right decisions. What else can you do? I know it's hard believe me, it's like you see your child on the path to destruction and want so much to change their direction, you know the consequences they will face and no matter what you say or do they continues to make bad choices. Ah, the joy of motherhood!!!

You are a good mom and sometimes we must let them fall and pick themselves back up. Hang in there. :smile:

hearts and roses

Mind Reader
Thanks again everyone. I've decided that I will no longer rread her stuff, even if it is left out in the open. It sends me into a tailspin and I can't have that anymore.

I wrote difficult child a long letter about all the same things we've discussed over and over and over again throughout her life. She said she read it, told me she loves me and that she didn't feel the need to discuss it any further. That tells me that I am talking to a wall. Perhaps I worded it differently and she's actually listened to at least a small portion of what I've said.

As I said earlier, she already had the round of HPV shots, the third one is in august. However, mattsmom, I will definitely ask about the IUD. I don't know why I didn't think of that - I think I recall hearing that there were issues with it. I think it can stay in her for up to 5 years and it is supposedly less of a risk as it was back in the 70's. I will check into that. Thanks for the idea!

NOmad - no need to bring in another person - talking has never been an issue for any of us, it's just not uncomfortable in our family. We've always been a "let it all out" kind of family. However, the school nurse did address these topics with difficult child in the Fall, so at least she has heard it from someone other than H, easy child and me.

Like branbran said, what else can I do? I guess it's time for me to let go of this - I've gone over everything with her a million times. If she is heck bent on doing what she wants, then she will do what she wants.

Thanks for the hugs!