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11 year old with bad attitude and lying
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11 year old with bad attitude and lying

I am very concerned about my 11 year old daughter.  Her attitude really stinks and she lies about everything.  We have noticed she is becoming mean to her friends.  She seems to have no respect for anyone including herself.  This has been going on since the begining of 5th grade in 08/08.  I have been to school and talked with teachers and guidence cunseler and they seem to say the same thing, its a phase or its puberty.  I am no longer buying this.  I love my daughter and only want whats best for her.  Lately she has been lying about completing her homework, forgeting her homework at school or home, therefore not turning it in, tells her teachers that she is not going to do her work, has been caught cheating on a test, forged 2 notes sent home by teachers and the list goes on.  I have to argue with her to get her to do anything around the house including her homework.  She just seems totaly miserable.  All she wants to do is play outside and talk to friends on the phone or computer.  She has been grounded from, TV, video games, going outside and anything fun.  She has even had 2 spankings since this began.  It all seems to work for a couple of weeks and then we go through it all again.  We do let her still participate in gymnastics since that is good for her self esteem and gives her physical activity.  I am requesting another sit down with the teachers and have thought about contacting her doctor for suggestions.  She is a great kid and I for the life of m can not figure out what is going on.  I try to talk to her and she says nothing is wrong.  She has plenty of friends, which I am starting to onder if they are good for her.  They seem to be but they play outside so I really don't know to much about them.  I try to give her space and let her have freedom but where do I draw the line.  We have a pretty stabile homelife with both parents living in the home.  She does have a 2 yr old sister that she seems to be a little jealous of but only the normal sibling rivalry.  Her teacher stated today that she is to big for her britches and I agree.  She thinks she is the boss and ha to listen to no one.  What should I do?  Do I contract a therapist?  Do I keep punishing her?  I do not want his to go any further.  We have a cousin that is 16 and going to adult jail and do not want our child to go down that road.  And for the record she has no contact with the teen that is going to jail.  How can I save my child and get my sweet little girl back?  Please help!
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Avatar_f_tn
To get your sweet little girl back...I'm sorry to say that she's probably gone.  Even when this does get fixed, or she outgrows it, you'll have a different person.  
Grounding her from "anything fun" will not gain her cooperation, you've empirically established that.  If she knows that you have nothing left that you will take away that matters to her, she no longer has any motivation to do what you say in order to avoid punishment.  
I don't quite know how you're getting from lying about homework to miserable...sure, she might be, but if she's spending time outside and with her friends, then it's unlikely.  By the way, do you know how rare it is for an 11 year old to -want- to play outside?  
This really does seem like it's developmentally normal.  although that isn't to say that you should just let it slide.  I would recommend at least considering asking her whether she thinks her homework is important, and if not, why not.  If she thinks it doesn't matter and she'd rather do other things, then she's unlikely to do it.  See if you can convince her, (without lecturing) that homework and chores matter.  On the one hand because her learning now will affect her high school grades, which she needs to have any kind of future.  And on the other (the chores), because it needs to get done, and if she wants to reap the benefits of being part of the household, she needs to do her part to keep it up and running.  She isn't at any more risk than anyone else of going to jail, as I said, this is pretty normal.  I understand that you've had an frightening experience with this other kid, but he's an extreme anomaly.  For the same reason, I would recommend that you not get a professional involved just yet.  They specialize in people who are damaged or disordered, not just rebellious and pubescent.  Wait at least until you've tried a little longer to sort this out on your own.  I would also reccomend reading Positive Discipline For Teens; it's one of the best parenting books I've read.  
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Avatar_n_tn
I know there has been some  time from when this post was originally posted. I am in the same boat with my 11 year old not completing or turning in homework. It has been this way since she was in 3rd grade. I finally developed a checklist that she has to complete and we have to sign off everyday before she could do anything else like go and play or watch TV. Also we made her do it downstairs and not in her room. Once she developed this as a habit we backed off to once a week and checked in with her teachers. We also incented her with a new cellphone and text plan.
She is a good daughter but I grow tired of her attitude. Whenever we ask her to help or do something she sighs, rolls her eyes, and acts all bored. She retreats and acts like a loner when we are at family gatherings which irritate me. Whenever she doesn't get her way she puts everyone in a bad mood but once she gets what she wants she is the most happiest child. I know it is all normal, I probably acted like this when I was her age but I annoys the heck out of me. I just wanted to let you know you are not alone. Hang in there!
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Avatar_f_tn
bejoyful21 i think that's normal behavior. i was the SAME way. (not with the homework...i loved school so i always did my homework....until i got into high school then i used my study halls to get it done or the 5 minutes before class started...lol BAD HABIT!) but i had an attitude with my mom, i ALWAYS rolled my eyes and acted like that. don't worry girls tend to out grow it. now not all do. i have a cousin who still acts like that and she's 19. once i was out of high school i out grew it quick. my mom and i have the best relationship now. sure she still makes me mad from time to time but she's my best friend now. so don't get frustrated. ground her or take away something she likes if she's bad but she's turning into a teenager. i honestly don't know many teenagers who don't have major attitude problems.
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Avatar_m_tn
I am very glad to hear this is occuring in other households.  I am the adoptive mom to my husbands bio daughter.  I have been in her life since she was one. Her mom was murdered in a drug deal as she was an addict. Because of her Bio moms addiction it mad bio mom a liar, thief and numerous other things.  When my 11 year old lied about chewing gum to her teacher numerous times this year (teacher actually called me) and lied about forging my name on a newsletter that needed turned in (not for grade) I thought....Oh no is this a personality disorder?  I am calming down at reading these other posts.  Lying is unacceptable. I will discipline and wait till the next lie. Eventually they are either going to be liars or learn differently.  I realize I have no control over who she chooses to become but, I can do the right parental decisions and love her.  That is all. I hope and pray it is a teenage thing but if it's not...I will address it at that time.  Im gonna give it two more years. Hoping to report something better in that time. 5-27-2010
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