AA Ep. 3 – TELL ME YOUR DILEMMA, I’LL GIVE YOU MY TAKE: CONTACT Via Messenger or Email firstname.lastname@example.org
Q: My daughter has a 52% attendance at school. She is 15yrs old and is very stubborn. Though I think this will stand her in good stead as a person when she is an adult, at present she just refuses everything. She will mostly leave the house about 10.30am to go to school. Her high school starts st 8.15am, so she’s already late. If I ask or challenge her she turns round and goes back to her room. And won’t go at all She bikes. I’ve tried offering to take her in the car but she wont get in. How do I re-engage with her?
A: Alright I’m not a parent and I probably never will be (sadly!) but I’ll still do my best to offer some sound advice.
So… I think there’s a few key things going on here, and mainly they relate to social pressure and expectation. Like as a 15 year old, I don’t think this is straight up laziness, I believe there’s something much deeper going on. And truly this could be anything, but by refusing to do anything (and stubbornness), I’d say that there’s something in here related to her assertion of power and/or self-importance. Also, I’d say that these deeper issues are imperative to get to the bottom of because this is how you’ll truly be able to move forward (but I’ll get to this more in a tick).
You see first, just quickly I want to say that this is a classic case of action being ‘a call for love’, which in this case, quite possibly, your daughter wants to feel love at school yet doesn’t. So, in turn and in her search to feel loved (which is our primal instinct and behind most of our actions) she rebels for attention and sympathy (?). Alas, I believe this isn’t about school at all, rather she just wants to be heard, empowered and loved.
Now wah-wah-we-wah here comes the pivotal part: how do you get to the bottom of these deeper issues and also re-engage with her?? Well simply put, listen, listen and listen some more – honestly this simple act is a forgotten art (in todays world), and one that isn’t all that easy. But this is the gateway to your re-engagement.
So consciously be nice, show love, make the effort, take her out for a milkshake, but also give her the space to make ‘her moves’. Claustrophobia will get you nowhere. But most importantly when your around her listen carefully, make her comfortable, and especially allow her to do most of the talking.
Allow her call for love to be heard.
Allow her to be an ‘adult’ and work through this.
Because, at some point she’ll hopefully talk herself into a corner, and let’s hope that corner is that she realises just how important education is to her future. I mesa as we all know this is a one time gig and the last thing we want to do is make ourselves aware that we’re blowing it, still, for some reason self-realisation brings about the most healing.
Best of luck with it all.