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Sun Jul 10, 2016, 01:52 PM

 

So, our daughter has gone full-on "emo"

In the space of three weeks, she has quit dance (had been doing that for 12 years) quit softball, and taken down all her photos and posters, replacing them with My Chemical Romance and Fall Out Boy posters. She never ever goes outside, and she listens to emo music (almost exclusively My Chemical Romance, Fall Out Boy, and Panic at the Disco) from the moment she wakes up until she goes to sleep. Wears all black, all the time, even if it's 95 degrees.

Oh, and the best part? She professes to "hate us more than words can say."

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Reply So, our daughter has gone full-on "emo" (Original post)
Still In Wisconsin Jul 2016 OP
CaliforniaPeggy Jul 2016 #1
Still In Wisconsin Jul 2016 #2
JesterCS Jul 2016 #3
Still In Wisconsin Jul 2016 #5
irisblue Jul 2016 #4
Still In Wisconsin Jul 2016 #6
Generic Brad Jul 2016 #7
irisblue Jul 2016 #10
Still In Wisconsin Jul 2016 #12
mrmpa Jul 2016 #14
Wounded Bear Jul 2016 #8
lunatica Jul 2016 #9
Still In Wisconsin Jul 2016 #11
lindysalsagal Jul 2016 #13
Laffy Kat Jul 2016 #15
Coventina Jul 2016 #16
TexasBushwhacker Jul 2016 #38
MH1 Jul 2016 #17
femmocrat Jul 2016 #18
DemonGoddess Jul 2016 #19
Iggo Jul 2016 #20
a kennedy Jul 2016 #31
The Second Stone Jul 2016 #21
Major Nikon Jul 2016 #39
underahedgerow Jul 2016 #45
mackerel Jul 2016 #22
kentauros Jul 2016 #23
Nye Bevan Jul 2016 #24
Yavin4 Jul 2016 #25
sir pball Jul 2016 #26
underahedgerow Jul 2016 #46
Chan790 Jul 2016 #27
hibbing Jul 2016 #33
Chan790 Jul 2016 #36
littlebit Jul 2016 #28
electron_blue Jul 2016 #47
Taitertots Jul 2016 #29
Coventina Jul 2016 #34
Fla Dem Jul 2016 #30
whistler162 Jul 2016 #32
OriginalGeek Jul 2016 #35
rug Jul 2016 #37
underahedgerow Jul 2016 #44
sarcasmo Jul 2016 #40
progressoid Jul 2016 #41
lame54 Jul 2016 #42
underahedgerow Jul 2016 #43

Response to Still In Wisconsin (Original post)

Sun Jul 10, 2016, 01:56 PM

1. I'm wondering how old she is.

Not to worry, esp. if she's a teen.

They normally hate their parents. It's a necessary part of separating from them, so that they can grow up.

Good luck!

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Response to CaliforniaPeggy (Reply #1)

Sun Jul 10, 2016, 01:59 PM

2. She is 14 and a half...

 

I know some/most of this is normal. But she's giving up (suddenly) some things that have made her happy for a really long time, and rejecting all her longtime friends- a bunch of really good kids- for a couple of new "emo" friends.

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Response to Still In Wisconsin (Reply #2)

Sun Jul 10, 2016, 02:05 PM

3. Not to be alarmist

But do you suspect any drug use?

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Response to JesterCS (Reply #3)

Sun Jul 10, 2016, 02:38 PM

5. Thought of that... I don't think so, but can't tell for sure.

 

One of her new friends cuts though...Our daughter has not done that.

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Response to Still In Wisconsin (Reply #2)

Sun Jul 10, 2016, 02:10 PM

4. talk to her old friends parents

talk to their parents to see if they have any insight into this. Could someone have hurt your kid?

Get you & your co parent to a family therapist this week, seriously, this kind of a big change is a red flag

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Response to irisblue (Reply #4)

Sun Jul 10, 2016, 02:40 PM

6. Yeah, we're going to do that (the therapist)

 

She refuses to go but we're making her.

Her (former) best friend's mom asked about her, where she'd been, etc... but no insight into anything that happened to her.

Daughter just says everything she used to love "sucks, is mainstream, is lame, etc. etc."

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Response to Still In Wisconsin (Reply #6)

Sun Jul 10, 2016, 02:44 PM

7. My daughter went through a similar phase at the same age

And now she is 21 and off to the Ivy league to get her PhD. She turned around. Just keep engaging and including her and talking with her. You may not feel like you are getting through, but if you approach her with care and love you will get through more than you realize.

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Response to Still In Wisconsin (Reply #6)

Sun Jul 10, 2016, 03:30 PM

10. I really suggest you the parents go alone at first.

Surest way to make her heels dig in harder is to make her be an unwilling participant. You the adults need to get some insight as to what is typical & atypical behavior w/out her there. You the parents are going to need coping strategies to deal with your response to her "hatred". Bring her along in a few weeks when the dynamic is less intense.
I also need to ask, from personal & family experience.....could anyone be sexually assaulting her recently or currently? Could a former close friend have been assualted?

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Response to irisblue (Reply #10)

Sun Jul 10, 2016, 04:09 PM

12. Good advice... and to answer your question,

 

nobody, as far as we know, has sexually assaulted her or her friends. The key words there of course are as far as we know. My wife is a therapist specializing in treating victims of childhood sexual assault, so you can bet that's the first thing she/we wondered about. I would have thought she would tell us, but even in the most healthy relationships it's hard for a kid to tell those things- to anyone.

One of her former friends- and I hope not permanently former- is a survivor. Other than that I don't know.

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Response to Still In Wisconsin (Reply #12)

Sun Jul 10, 2016, 04:38 PM

14. Could she be angry..........

perhaps at your wife. Might your daughter think in some muddled way that your wife pays more attention to those she is treating than she does to her.

Just thinking.

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Response to Still In Wisconsin (Reply #2)

Sun Jul 10, 2016, 03:11 PM

8. She's 14 and doing dance for 12 years?

No wonder she wants a break.

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Response to Still In Wisconsin (Original post)

Sun Jul 10, 2016, 03:29 PM

9. If she doesn't hate you more than a kazillion suns she's not normal

She'll start being nice to you again when she's old enough to get her driver's license, and you'll be so pathetically glad to get her back that you'll fall for it.

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Response to lunatica (Reply #9)

Sun Jul 10, 2016, 04:04 PM

11. I know I will, too...

 

the girl has had me wrapped around her finger since- well, the moment I met her...

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Response to Still In Wisconsin (Original post)

Sun Jul 10, 2016, 04:18 PM

13. "Everything's going so well!!!" (Moulin Rouge)

Congratulations! You're parents!!!


WoooHoooo!!!!


You USED to be smart. NOW, you're total morons from space.

But the good news is, in a bout 10 years, you'll be smart, again.

So, you have something to look forward to.

Honestly, as a teacher, we were told in a lecture once that if you look at middle school brain scans, they'd be considered brain damaged for anyone of another age.

So, this, too shall pass. As long as they insult you to your face, you're good!

I'd recommmend making an appointment with the middle school guidance counselor asap. They can help alot if they know you're not going to blame them.

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Response to Still In Wisconsin (Original post)

Sun Jul 10, 2016, 04:45 PM

15. Sounds like a case of adolescence. There is no cure.

Don't worry, it will only last for a few years.

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Response to Still In Wisconsin (Original post)

Sun Jul 10, 2016, 05:46 PM

16. That happened to me at about that age. Except then it wasn't called "emo."

It was called "Goth."

By all means, get a professional opinion, I don't want you to ignore what could be serious warning signs.

The biggest question I would have is: does she still have friends? If she does, I would cautiously say probably things are OK.

Has she had her heart broken lately? That could also be a factor.
Caveat: it could have happened without you knowing about it. I was very careful to hide my romantic entanglements from my parents. I was very good at hiding, period. I never used illicit drugs or engaged in cutting or anything, but I wanted to keep my life private from my parents, who were very overbearing. (Not saying you are, just explaining my situation).

Also, having her heart broken could involve a long-term friendship with another girl. That happened to me as well in my teens. My best friend and I "broke up" and it was as traumatic - or more - than the end of a romance.

Good luck!

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Response to Coventina (Reply #16)

Mon Jul 11, 2016, 11:54 PM

38. I had one of those friendship breakups too

I had a best friend since 3rd grade. When we went to middle school she started getting noticed because she had blossomed into a very pretty girl. I was ordinary. Still am. Her new circle of pretty people was not interested in having me around. She tossed me like used Kleenex. It hurt so much.

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Response to Still In Wisconsin (Original post)

Sun Jul 10, 2016, 06:16 PM

17. I'm completely unqualified, but just gonna throw this out there.

Of all the activities she's quit - particularly the ones she quit first - are there any specific people or factors in common? This could be a recent ex-friend, a boy, a bully or group of bullies, an adult who has behaved inappropriately, anything like that.

Maybe she doesn't want to be with a certain person or group of people.

Alternatively, is there someone new in her life that brought in the "emo" stuff? It seems odd that a new person could totally shift her perspective. Though, there is the "fourteen and a half" thing so normal behavior is not exactly expected.

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Response to Still In Wisconsin (Original post)

Sun Jul 10, 2016, 06:22 PM

18. One of my sons went through "that stage."

He had been a straight-A student, played 3 sports, always well-dressed, and seemed to have a nice group of friends. He hit high school and quit all of it. He tossed out his nice clothes and started dressing like a punk. It was "grunge" back then.

Yes, he out-grew it, but not until college. Teenagers go through crazy stages while they try on different personas. If you are sure she isn't doing anything harmful, wait it out. Show an interest in her music and when she says she hates you, answer, "Well, I love YOU." Don't push or nag her, just keep an eye on her. And good luck!

(I'm so glad my kids were teenagers before Facebook, Instagram, etc.)



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Response to Still In Wisconsin (Original post)

Sun Jul 10, 2016, 07:11 PM

19. With all five of mine now adults

I echo what you've been told. If you feel she should speak to a therapist, you as parents should go without her at first, that's number one.

Number two, girls lose their fecking MINDS at 14 and don't seem to regain any semblance of sanity until their early 20's.

Number three, if they were always conforming before to what was expected, when the rebellion happens, it's usually much worse.

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Response to Still In Wisconsin (Original post)

Sun Jul 10, 2016, 07:17 PM

20. It's just a phase. She'll be back praising you as the best parents ever...

...right around the time she turns 30.

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Response to Iggo (Reply #20)

Mon Jul 11, 2016, 11:59 AM

31. ditto to right around the time she turns 30 is married and has kids of her own....

funny how that works.

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Response to Still In Wisconsin (Original post)

Sun Jul 10, 2016, 07:19 PM

21. I recommend complete imitation of her new interests, with you and the

 

little lady/dude/whatever wearing the same colors and styles. Get videos of the old Addams Family, etc. Take an interest in the bands she puts posters up of, and start talking about the lead singer and his brooding eyes. Sing their songs off-key and with poor tempo.

"I hate you too, Sweetie, with the burning fury of a million burning suns. I hate you so much that I'm going to kiss you on the cheek now in front of your friends." Nana and Pop-pop are coming over later, and we'll all go and watch The Rocky Horror Picture Show together if you decide to stay home this evening...

Buy a used hearse and pick her up from school in it.

You'd be surprised how good you look in a little black dress or a Johnny Cash suit.

Have "the talk" with her. Especially if you are her father. Make sure that you cover self-pleasuring and how it can make people really grumpy (if they don't do it enough, but keep quiet about the last part.)

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Response to The Second Stone (Reply #21)

Tue Jul 12, 2016, 09:37 AM

39. ...

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Response to The Second Stone (Reply #21)

Wed Jul 13, 2016, 01:06 PM

45. And ALWAYS yell 'DON'T DO DRUGS' out the window when you drop her off at school in

front of her friends. (Almost Famous)

I swear I did that to my poor kid.

When I had a carload of her girlfriends and dropped them off in the village to socialize or at a party, I'd yell at all of them 'All right girls, listen up; No booze, no drugs, no boys, no girls, no sex! No kissing! Stand in ONE place and for gawd's sake, keep your clothes on!' Then I'd put one in charge to hold the hair of the one who was inevitably going to be vomiting in the bushes.

It was all in good fun, but they really appreciated that I was sarcastic, but frank with them, and it was hysterically funny. I'm still FB buddies with all her girlfriends, it's so cute. I was apparently the 'cool' mom, for whatever that's worth. They all turned out just fine btw.

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Response to Still In Wisconsin (Original post)

Sun Jul 10, 2016, 11:15 PM

22. Wait 'til she turns 15, you're gonna love it.

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Response to Still In Wisconsin (Original post)

Mon Jul 11, 2016, 01:06 AM

23. Well, you could always out-emo her with old skool Industrial/Noise!

Start with Throbbing Gristle, then move on to Pain Teens, Robert Normandeau (album Tangram), Rhythm & Noise, Zoviet France, Coil, Naut Humon, Ellen Fullman, Voice of Eye (among so many worth hearing.)

Sure, that probably won't work, but if you really did listen to music like this, she might like some of it, start listening, and then claim she always was a fan

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Response to Still In Wisconsin (Original post)

Mon Jul 11, 2016, 01:11 AM

24. Great Mark Twain quote:

"When I was a boy of 14, my father was so ignorant I could hardly stand to have the old man around. But when I got to be 21, I was astonished at how much the old man had learned in seven years."

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Response to Still In Wisconsin (Original post)

Mon Jul 11, 2016, 01:31 AM

25. We tend to underestimate those transitional years from being a child to being a teen

It's an extremely tough time both mentally and physically.

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Response to Still In Wisconsin (Original post)

Mon Jul 11, 2016, 02:16 AM

26. Introduce her to Shai Hulud

They're a true, old-school hardcore band that basically inspired emo with badass tracks like






way back in 1997.

Seriously though, as a former scene kid (I'm 37, the 90s hXc/sXe was my jam), if it's this sudden it's not trauma, she's just decided that the "dark, thoughtful, emotional scene" is cooler than dealing with you squares. Tell her you love her and support her in her choices, and even though she hates you, if there ARE issues she needs to talk about, you'll be there for her. None of the kids I know who were traumatized did this kind of explicit action...it's scenesterism.

Other than that, find your nearest Hot Topic and start Christmas shopping there.

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Response to sir pball (Reply #26)

Wed Jul 13, 2016, 01:08 PM

46. That's really excellent advice. Well done you.

Best advice on the board!

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Response to Still In Wisconsin (Original post)

Mon Jul 11, 2016, 08:50 AM

27. An alternative perspective.

 

14 is really the earliest age we're comfortable to assert ourselves as individuals separate from our parents' wants of us. I'm going to take aguess that dance and softball were things that stopped being fun a long time ago and she's now just comfortable enough to assert herself. This isn't bad, it's good. It's likely that she'll miss them and go back to them...she needs a break. Fuck, who doesn't need a break from a lifelong pursuit sometimes. I write...really well. Published and everything. Haven't opened my writing laptop in 15 months; just fucking burnt-out.

I'm concerned that she is entirely changing her friends...but it's not uncommon, it's less that they're no longer her friends...think of it as more of the honeymoon phase of a new relationship, except not romantic or sexual...you meet someone new, they excite you about parts of you that you didn't know existed and you crave their presence for how it feels. (There is a term for this (squish) used to describe the non-sexual crushes of asexual/aromantic (and other "graysexual" identities) that I think works well.) So, it's a squish...she wants the attention and presence of her new friends and old friendships will fall by the wayside or get set on the shelf. If they're important to her or ever were, they'll get picked back up in time when the squish-buzz fades.

As a former emo kid, her taste in music sucks...but every 14 year old has shitty taste. It's how you know you're 14. Tell her Sunny Day Real Estate is much better, even if they did break up before she was ever born.

Relax, this too will pass.

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Response to Chan790 (Reply #27)

Mon Jul 11, 2016, 02:41 PM

33. No Bright Eyes?

I guess the kids have moved on since Bright Eyes is "old" now.

Peace

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Response to hibbing (Reply #33)

Mon Jul 11, 2016, 03:45 PM

36. I love Bright Eyes.

 

SDRE is older than that. 1994 debut. Broke-up in late 1995. Have reunited a few times for album tours and the such since then, only to break up again mid-tour.

SDRE not only kind of invented emo...it's hard to surpass them in it. I mean this is perfection.



But Bright Eyes is amazing too. Lover I Don't Have to Love is one of the tracks on my Theme Songs for Chan" mix CD.



For that matter, the original lineup for Heatmiser led by Elliott Smith and Neil Gust may be the most-perfect emo group ever.

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Response to Still In Wisconsin (Original post)

Mon Jul 11, 2016, 08:58 AM

28. My daughter did the same thing at that age

At first I wrote it off thinking it was just a phase. But now three years and a 2 1/2 year old grandson later I know now that I should have paid a little more attention to it.

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Response to littlebit (Reply #28)

Thu Jul 14, 2016, 11:11 AM

47. in hindsight...

what do you mean by 'paid more attention to it'? what do you wish you'd done?

I also has a daughter going through this and am trying to avoid this outcome. feel free to dm me.

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Response to Still In Wisconsin (Original post)

Mon Jul 11, 2016, 09:43 AM

29. Show her the South Park episode about Emo/goth kids

 

Then start overly bracing emo behaviors.

She'll be back on the softball field in no time.

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Response to Taitertots (Reply #29)

Mon Jul 11, 2016, 03:04 PM

34. Is that the one where Butters burns down the Hot Topic?

I love that one!!

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Response to Still In Wisconsin (Original post)

Mon Jul 11, 2016, 09:58 AM

30. Lots of good advice from fellow DUer's, my one other thought; could she have an infatuation with

someone. I have seen this before where a young person draws the attention of someone and they begin to emulate that person's persona. If a boy or girl at school, has shown interest in her, she may be taking on the things that interest them so they have more in common.

While I agree with many of the posts that she may just be going through a phase; your continued concern is warranted, but give her some space.

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Response to Still In Wisconsin (Original post)

Mon Jul 11, 2016, 12:07 PM

32. What she is acting like a big Australian

flightless bird!

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Response to Still In Wisconsin (Original post)

Mon Jul 11, 2016, 03:17 PM

35. sounds like she's about 6 years late isn't she?

those bands haven't done anything for a while now have they?


My daughter liked them all several years ago but she's past it. She likes Vol-beat now. Which I can handle as they have some songs with guest vocals by King Diamond and Barney from Napalm Death.


I was only sad I couldn't get my daughter to love Insect Warfare or Anal Vomit or Nunslaughter as much as I do.


At least I was able to take her to a Beastie Boys show before MCA died.

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Response to Still In Wisconsin (Original post)

Mon Jul 11, 2016, 06:42 PM

37. When your child turns 13, put her in a cardboard box with airholes and tape it shut.

 

When she turns 16, plug the airholes.

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Response to rug (Reply #37)

Wed Jul 13, 2016, 12:57 PM

44. ^^^^ THIS^^^^^ bwahahahah, love it. n/t

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Response to Still In Wisconsin (Original post)

Tue Jul 12, 2016, 10:43 PM

40. I like Panic at the Disco

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Response to Still In Wisconsin (Original post)

Wed Jul 13, 2016, 12:08 AM

41. I'm an old guy but

for what it's worth, I don't think My Chemical Romance and Fall Out Boy qualify as emo.

My Chemical Romance's lead vocalist and songwriter Gerard Way has previously stated that he strongly disagrees with the band's frequent classification of "emo", saying:
“ Basically, it's never been accurate to describe us. Emo bands were being booked while we were touring with Christian metal bands because no one would book us on tours. I think emo is fucking garbage, it's bullshit. I think there's bands that unfortunately we get lumped in with that are considered emo and by default that starts to make us emo. All I can say is anyone actually listening to the records, put the records next to each other and listen to them and there’s actually no similarities. I think emo’s a pile of shit.”


Of course that has nothing to do with her state of mind.

One of our daughters rebelled at 14 by wanting to date an 18 yr old. That went over well with her mother!

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Response to Still In Wisconsin (Original post)

Wed Jul 13, 2016, 12:37 PM

42. Is that the fish or the red puppet?

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Response to Still In Wisconsin (Original post)

Wed Jul 13, 2016, 12:55 PM

43. When my kid was about 12 we were in London and in the hotel we saw a very, very

emo goth girl, allllll decked out with all the way over the top gear. She was all in green, the huge stomper shoes, green and white striped tights, massive eyeliner from her eyebrows to her cheekbones, the works.

I punched my kid in the arm and just gave her THE LOOK. She starts whining 'GOD Mom, I WON'T! She looks like shit!'

It was my 'if you EVER dare dress like that, I'll have to KILL you' look.

She got a small tattoo when she was 18. Had it for months before she told me, lol. She's 23 now and regrets it and I happily do the 'told you so' torment on her. We give each other a lot of shit. I do my mom job and she whines, then admits I'm right. We're all good!!! We live far apart now, she sent me a pic on whatsapp of herself and pals out in a club last week. I laughed and said 'you look stoned'. She replies 'I AM'. I just said 'niiiiiiiiiiiiiice'. I'd rather she smoked weed than cigarettes, lol. I love my kid. I'm a great mom!

For your kid... yeah, you're going to lose IQ points every time she looks at you. It's a phase. The dancing thing, well, she's asserting her independence. The hormones have kicked in and she's starting to test the boundaries and see where her interests lie, and apparently, it's not in dance anymore. The teens quit it pretty much as soon as they can unless they want to go pro, which is very rare.

Wearing black all the time? Well.... if she's doing it frannie cobain style, then that's kind of cool, frannie has a great look. It's good for the kid to assert her individuality, but really steer her clear of tattoos and piercings; that stuff will destroy any career possibilities she could ever have beyond working in a tattoo parlor.

In terms of socializing, perhaps try the 'temper tantrum kid who doesn't want to play with others' schtick. Continue to enjoy yourselves, do what you do socially, have people over, have FUN, go shopping, picnics, whatever things you did/do as a family. Continue to invite her to do the things you always did with her, such as cooking, housekeeping chores, etc. Show her what a great time you're having, and eventually, she'll want to play the same games, er I mean participate too. Works with 4 year olds, works with 14 year olds.

Good luck!!!!

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