anonymous Asks ...
idk what to do when my mom makes me feel so small and literally always puts me down, she says she hates me and she wants me out of her life, and everything is just getting worse. I've tried talking to my dad but he doesn't listen nor care because he thinks its just always complaining. I want to leave more than anything but I am only 14 and a half. please give advice?
Rev. Christopher Smith Says ...
Without knowing more about your situation, my answer will by its nature have some limitations to it. If your situation continues to wear at you, you might think about seeking out someone who can help you look at your own situation, this might be a mental health professional in the community or your school counselor. As an initial sounding board, you may even explore adults who are used to working with teenagers and their parents, such as your minister, priest, rabbi or other faith group leader.
Being a teenager can be difficult as can being the parent of a teenager. As a teenager you are taking more responsibility for your life. Some of the decisions that you make are ones that your parents would disagree with. On their side, they are having to learn to let you live your life and to not be overprotective of you. This is not what they are used to doing and can b a difficult transition for them.
If the patterns with your mother are new, it sounds as if your mother may be having a hard time dealing with your getting older. She could be frustrated, concerned about how she raised you, etc. Have you considered talking with her when there was not a crisis going on in your relationship? Can you help her understand the choices you are making and the things she is upset about (and perhaps even related to how she puts you down)? In so doing, are you really ready to hear her side of what is going on, even if it involves some painful things about yourself?
When you describe yor father, it sounds like you may be making assumptions about where he is at. You say that he doesn't listen or care - how do you know that? You say that he thinks you are always complaining - how long have you been able to read his mind? It may be true that he really does not engage about these issues, however the meaning behind that could eb quite different. It could be that he has learned over the years (based on interactions involving you or even older siblings if you have any) that he cannot win in becoming inolved in the conflicts between you and your mother. He may feel that the best thinig is to not respond and get caught being on one side or the other. Have you tried letting your dad know that you just want him to hear how everything is affecting you without him getting involved? Have you asked your dad if there was any way he could mediate between you and your mother?
Beyond your interactions with your parents, how do you feel about yourself and the decisions that you make? It is common to have uncertainty and doubt as a teenager. If this is an issue for you, then you might want to do some things to reinforce for yourself that you are a good person and that you do good things. This can range from working to forgive yourself for mistakes that you make to reading affirmations about yourself that you post in strategic locations. There are lots of ways to work on how you feel about yorself and if you strengthen this then your motehrs comments may not have as much of a negative effect.
Even with the best daughter-parent relationships, going through your teenage years is not easy and has its emotional and relational challenges, but that is part of the developmental tasks you are going through. By trying some of these things, it is possible to find more peace and wholeness in your relationship with your parents as well as with yourself. It is also possible to have an imporved relationship with them after everyone has moved into adult relationships with each other - so don't get upset and burn your bridges too soon.