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Desperately need help for daughter

I know this is really long, but I am desperate and need help.

My daughter is 16....she is biracial.... her biological dad and I were never married..he was abusive and an alcoholic. their relationship was unstable and varied. when she was 5-7 yrs old, she used to get in the middle of violence between him and his wife at that time. We lived with my mom off/on until I married 8 yrs ago, so my mom is a huge part of my daughters life. My mom is a very loving person, but can turn and be very nasty when she does not get her way or if she feels hurt. about 6 years ago, my daughter got her hair braided and my mom said "do you think you're Black?" and did not think anything was wrong with that statement.

My daughter has always had "problems" with friends. she wants to get her way all of the time and if she cant get her way, she calls her grandma.  Instead of telling her that she has to listen to me, my mom calls and questions everything I do and my daughter knows this.

I had a baby three years ago and my daughter loves her little sister, but I know she is also very jealous of her. She has made comments that the baby took her place and that I did not love her anymore. I have seen her push her sister down before when she was mad at me or my husband. She would tell her sister "Get out of my room, I dont like you" (to a 2 yr old)
She told me several months ago that she cant control her anger and she felt like she was bipolar. Her pediatrician gave her some valium to see if that helped and we did a lot of reading and made appt with pysch (had to wait 6 weeks for the 1st appt)  
From what I read, I think it sounds more like BPD that bi-polar but I know I am not a dr.  She has crazy fears that make no sense to me. she wont run into a store for me by herself because she thinks someone is going to kidnap her. She is afraid of the dark. She thinks that she is going to die alone and never see the people she loves. if someone taps her on the left shoulder, she will throw a fit and have to hit herself on the right side because she says she is off balance. and her anger comes from nowhere. she is the sweetest child in the world until she hears the word no and then she is a devil.
She got along great with my husband, unless she was in trouble for something, then he was mean, etc.

Me, my mom, and my husband all had a huge fight after christmas and my daughter went to go stay with my mom.  she has been there for 6 weeks and her attitude is WORSE. now she is saying she never wants to come back to my house because she hates my husband and if I make her come home she will run away. The comments she says about my husband are the almost the same things my mother says, so that make me angry.

My daughter saw the pysch and he said that he thought she had a anxiety disorder and gave her lexapro. She was on that for a for weeks and said it wasn't helping so she just started cymbalta.

Since shes been at my mom's, she has a lot more freedom that she does at home. She was 90 mins late coming home from school, so my mom got angry with her and said that I was going to pick her up and take her back to my house to live and I was going to call the police, so she did not come home.
She ended up talking to her bio dad, who brought her back to my moms house. I had no idea that they had been talking for 2 weeks and he bought her a cell phone behind my back. We found out from calling all of her friends looking for her that she has a boyfriend. We keep telling her that she cant have a boyfriend right now; that she needs to get help first and she said basically she will do what she wants to do.

So, I told her bio dad to come get her. She told me that if I made her stay there that she was going to kill herself.
She was there for not even three days (weekend)...they were supposed to take her to her counseling appt and they did not take her, so she missed it..then they refused to bring her home. They got tired of her,  and his whole family was talking to her like garbage and brought her back to my mom.

My mom was watching my baby while I work and my husband said that he was making other arrangements temporarily because of all this chaos that is going on (he doesnt want the baby there now) I told my mom and she flew off the handle....she told me that I dont have a mother any more, that she is dead to me, etc...so now when I try to call about my older daughter, she refuses to get on the phone because she is mad at me about her not babysitting the baby. my daughter said that my mom has been walking around slamming doors for two days and she wont do anything but lay in the bed because I took the baby away from her.

I dont know what to do...what do her actions sound like?

Thank you for reading this!!
3 Responses
604266 tn?1236358985
First off, there is alot of chaos going on here. Within the three seperate family units..your and your husband's..your mothers...and your daughter bio father.  It sounds like she doesn't have any consistant stability in rules and boundaries as she is off with each person who lets her do different things and treats her differently.

I'mm say about the cell pgone and boyfriend...your daughter is 16 throw out the mental illness for a minute. Her hormones are raging. All of her friends are into boys and all of her friends probably have cell phones. I can think back to being 16 (heck I'm only 29) and if my parents had told me to stop seeing my boyfriend, it woudln't have gone over well. So that's not apart of anything excepy being 16 years old and rebelious trying to find out who she is and where she fits in the world on her own.
When your 16 you think you know everything..thta's normal.

And while I do agree that it sounds like she has anxiety and MAYBE the a personality issie, she's only 16 and no doctor will diagnose a personality disorder until someone is 18 because her peronality is still developing and she's at a very hormaonal and ackward stage in her life.

I'm surprised teh doctor took her off the medication so quickly and put her on cymbalta(though cymbalta is a good drug) It takes all of those types of medication a few weeks to get into the system enough to work. Sometimes it can even take up to a month for someone to feel the full effects. So make sure your giving the meds time. I'm just surprised the doc took her off after a week and cganged unless he just thought cymbalta was a better choice afterall which it may.

In my opinion there's thress things going on here. Your relationship your daughter, your relationship with your mother and the relatiosnhip with your ex husband(or your daughters bio dad)
Each relationship effects the next and effects your daighter. Especially the relatioship with your mother. I see her attitude as getting worse after being with her hrandmother for so long because her grandmother was at that time her care taker and the rule maker and the way your mother reacts and acts to things your daughter has adopted into herself.

Certainly it's alot of chaos that's swirling around and directly and indirectly effecting your daughter.

So my suggestions would be this:
Make sure she makes her couseling and phyciatrist appointment(they're especially important)
Try to make sure she is living with one person the majority of the time and goes to visit the others on a weekend. That way your daughter will have the continual stability she needs at that age with the same rules and boundaries being set.
And try to make sure that her bio father is prepared to set the same rules and boundaries as well as your mother.

I know your relationship with your mother is not good. But if your daughter is going to ve over there for visits and whatnot your mother needs to set in place your rules and boundaries. She is your daughter.
But she needs to be spending a consistant amount of time in one place every week where she understand what's required of her and when she gies to visit people/family on the weekends those rules need to still apply or of course she'll prefer to live with someone who lets her do anything she wants or has more lax rules.
And that gives your daughter the room to manipulate you and your husband by refusing to come hom.

There may be a reason she refuses to stay at her bi-dads for the weekend and my advice is that you talk to her about it and make sure your sending her to a place where she feels safe. By your accounts her bio-dad had some anger problems and problems with alcohol and may still.
Make sure to listen to what she's saying. Set aside some special time for her for just you and her without her sister and without your husband and talk..either out to lunch or going to the mall. Something that includes not just sitting in her room talking to her but something special for the both of you. And if it works than maybe start doing it every week.

I can feel your daughter has alot to be angry about, especial;ly as a 16 year old girl. And not that that anger is right, but that there are things going on that triggers her anger and she maybe doesn't even know what they are which is why it's inportant she doesn't miss counseling or her psychiatrist who can make sure all her meds are working and she's okay on them.
Sometimes it's not uncommon for someone to need help from another medicine or have one replaced.

But I'll tell you now...she won't stop seeing her boyfriend if your demanding it..especially if your saying she needs to work on issues before she does. She may be hearing a different meesage than what your actually saying as 16 year olds tend to hear things as they want t o hear them. So maybe that's somethinng to talk about to her also and find out about this boyfriend(you know at 16 it's not going to last)

Does what I'm saying make sense and seem possible?
It's a tough situation your in especially adding all the different family dynamics and how you treat your daughter compared to how your mother and her bio-father treat her. She's all over the map emotionally and it doesn't sound like there's much stability,
So in short trying to get everyone on the same page is important. And of your mother can't go by your rules with your daughter than maybe you need to sit down with her and talk to her abiout why it's important to you.

I'm so sorry your mother has said the things she has to you. Has your mother been diagnised with Bi-Polar or any other Mental Illness? I know what she said must have hurt alot.
But remember too, your daughter can pick up on all thes ethings going on and in her mind her might be feeling split between her grandmother and you knowing how her grandmother feels right now.

And of course I don't know the whole situation so this is just what I see from your post and may be missing some things and totaly off the mark here.
But I hope some of it will help you out. I know you must be frustrated, very frustrated at this point.

604266 tn?1236358985
Oh also..you can show her this site and ask her to join if she wants to. Ther eare alot of people her age that come on and there are tons of forums and it may help her in between therapy sessions to make some on line friends to be able to talk with.

Just a thought
82861 tn?1333453911
A friend of mine is having the exact same issues with her son.  He is very smart, but uses that intelligence to manipulate.  He WANTS the chaos because he gets attention - doesn't matter if it's negative attention.  He is currently living with his grandparents and they are at their wit's end.  The bio-dad swoops in and makes things worse.  Thus far, counselors think he has Narcissistic Personality Disorder, which is not something that is curable with a pill.

I don't know what the answers are, but in this boy's case, there is 16 years worth of rage coming out regarding the fact that he didn't get the family he wanted.  He wants the "Beaver Cleaver" family, and got born into a broken family so he's lashing out at the last few people in his life who love him.  You aren't alone by a long shot.

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