Parenting Children (6-12) Community
Very troubled 10 year old ...
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Very troubled 10 year old ...

My mom has a stepdaughter and stepson with her fiancee. I'm very concerned about the girl. She is only 10 and has suffered thru a lot; abuse, both sexual as well as emotional, learning problems, constantly being compared to her brother and being put down by her mother who is the full time parent. I really feel for the child, but she is starting to act out and I'm starting to think she's heading down a really bad path. She wants to dress promiscuously and wear clothes that are way too small for her, she hangs up on her dad when he makes his nightly calls, she talks back and honestly, she reminds me of myself when I was 16. It's more terrifying because she's ONLY 10; you kind of expect rebellion from teens, but she's so young. My answer for all of this is therapy, therapy, THERAPY! But that's not an option right now because of financial hardships and issues between the parents. I want to connect with the kid, but she's really good at manipulating situations and turning conversations into something else to avoid talking about what's really going on. I want to help her, but frankly I'm stumped. Does anyone have any suggestions on what either myself or our family can do to help her? I tried getting her to journal her feelings, but it didn't work out - 1) she has a learning problem and I think its difficult for her to write and 2) her mom broke any privacy the kid had and read her journal, then punished her for using foul language in it. Anyways, any suggestions would be appreciated! ANYTHING! I don't want this little girl to end up like myself as a teenager (dropping out, self injurying, and coping with mental and behavioral health problems).  She deserves more.
Tags: troubled, 10 year old girl, emotional abuse, coping skills, rebellious
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I think it's fabulous that you're making this effort,  and don't think you aren't making a profound impact on her just because you aren't seeing behavioral changes yet.  

Keep doing what you're doing - your concern and wisdom show through here loud and clear,  and your empathy and understanding of her situation will resonate with her heart too.

Best wishes - keep it up,  you will make a big difference.
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