Subject: teen stealing and lying
Question: Dear M.,
My 19 yr old daughter has a history with lying and stealing. She will lie about anything and when she is caught she will never admit it. The same with the stealing, she will be caught with something in her possession and she will deny it vehemently.
She always has a story of some other way it happened ususally she says someone has planted it there. She has lost almost every job due to stealing, and has been prosecuted twice. She has been diagnosed as depressed but refuses to take medication.
Recently i gave her an ultimatum when we found my 13 yr old son’s wallet in her purse missing all his money (that she said she didnt take) that she either get help through counceling (which is free for her) or she find somewhere else to live.
I have three other kids and we are tired of being her victims with no admittance or remorse. She has a different father than the other three and was involved in a bitter custody dispute virtually her entire life. she has very low self esteem and i just dont know what else i can do to help her.
Answer: Dear Tara:
You can tell her that you love her and that she is a grown up now and you have full confidence that she knows best how to live her life. She needs to get a job and move out. Her actions need to have consequences and she cannot feel these consequences living at home where she can violate your boundaries or those of your other children. This has nothing to do with her not being from the same father unless you make it so. It has everything to do with mutual respect.
You need to respect her by letting her know you are confident she can make her own choices and accept responsibility for herself and her actions.