Find answers to some of the more frequently asked questions on the Forums.

Forums guidelines

Our guidelines keep the Forums a safe place for people to share and learn information.


Community Member


I've just signed up out of desperation of needing someone to lend an ear or two. I am a mum of 2 girls - 17 and 14. What brings me here today is I am at wits end of how to talk/connect with my 17 year old daughter. My 14 has PVL (Periventricular leukomalacia). Here's the link for the full explanation - https://www.stanfordchildrens.org/en/topic/default?id=periventricular-leukomalacia-pvl-90-P02619 . In short, it's a form of brain injury.

I'm sure there are other parents in similar boats as me. So I am hoping that I can talk to someone before I go insane.

Thank you for reading.

6 Replies 6

Champion Alumni
Champion Alumni

Hi Pening1998

It so fantastic that you have come to this safe and friendly place to get some support, I can hear in your message that you are very frustrated and desperate and I am so very sorry. Having teenagers is hard on any day let alone to have PVL as well, that is alot for you and your family to deal with. I can't say how happy I am though that you have come here to chat and to get some advice from friends.

I am certainly no expert and I have actually never come across PVL before but I did just look it up and it is a very serious condition that would provide both you and your daughter alot of challenges.

I was wondering firstly what came into my head is that perhaps your 17 is struggling with the attention that is given to her sister with her PVL and feels as if she is not getting the attention she needs. I am sure you are doing your very best, as parents that is our main concern, but perhaps asking her directly what you can do for her. She may open up to you and give you some direction as to how she is feeling particularly if you ask her if she feels that she is not getting the attention she needs.

I also find that talking in the car is easier too as they are almost trapped..lol...I find it is a good time for them to purge and sometimes just throwing out a comment like "what made you laugh today?' can start a whole swag of conversations. This is when I get my 15yo son, it seems to work a treat so perhaps this is worth a try.

Another thing is also directly asking her "how can we connect better?, what am I doing that is frustrating you?" she may not open up but it will certainly indicate to her that you are trying to connect with her, and maybe while it is doing something together that she likes, shopping or something like that.

I have date nights with my kids individually, it is there choice what we do or where we go but it gives them some control over the relationship as well as some quality time one on one with me, this is also good to show them that I am making time for them in this very busy world, and you will really enjoy it too.

I am so sorry this is happening to you Pening1998 as parenting is very tricky, but the fact you are here and trying to get some answers and help is so positive and I am so glad you have reached out.

I am not sure if anything I have said has been helpful but I am thinking of you and would love to know how you are getting along.


Thank you Aaronsis for your reply and suggestions. Some I have done already and those I haven't I will take them on board. I did not elaborate in my first post but what brings me here today is that the 17 year old can't seem to take no for answer. She doesn't handle disappointment well. Latest example, yesterday she want to skip school today (first day of Term 4) so that she can spend the day with her boyfriend visiting from overseas (today is is his last day. He's been here for 3 weeks already). As a parent I cannot with clear conscious condone nor enable her to play truant. Needless to say it all went downhill from there. It turned as it usually did into a sling match. I dread talking to her now because the only way to avoid any confrontation is to say yes and I cannot do that!

Hi pening1998

I have a 15 year old not quite 17 but I understand what you are saying about not taking no for an answer.

I absolutely agree with you 100% and that she has had some time with him and sorry that this is his last day however you have school to attend to. You have most certainly made a good choice there.

I am not good at slinging matches with my kids as it becomes too emotional for me, so what I have learnt to do is say the response ..this is why I have said it..I am sorry if you don't agree or don't like it however that is my final position...then let them have there sh*t fit and tell them that I am not entering into any more discussion with you about this...after a few times of doing this they soon learn that when you say the answer ..that is final.....I also then follow the "discussion" up with "I am happy to speak to you when you have calmed down" or " I love you very much I don't like this behavior"..it is almost going back to how you would deal with a 3 year old as sometimes they have very similar tantrums....I am not sure if this is helpful but I feel like she will soon realize that screaming and abusing you certainly does not get her anywhere, that you don't get spoken to like that and it also doesn't change the outcome. Hopefully this will lessen the amount of flare up's too.

Maybe even a chat today to say that you are sorry she is mad at you and you hope she can understand that you have her best interests at heart and her education is very important and so is her commitment to school.

This is really a tough time so please try to be kind to yourself as you are doing the very best that you can and for her, I can see that and I am proud of you for sticking to your guns even when you were so upset, well done.


Thank you for your suggestions. In the heat of the moment it is so hard to keep my cool but I am going to try your suggestions. You are right about it being no different to dealing with a 3 year old tantrums except that I cannot implement time out!

Good Morning pening1998

How are you feeling this morning?

I have been thinking about you alot and wondering how you have been going over the past 12 hours?

If you would like some help in getting through the tantrums if you would like some help there, I certainly don't want to push that sort of thing on you.

I would really love to know how you are getting on and so happy that some of the things that I said you found helpful.

Hoping for you a brighter day today.

Chat soon


Thank you Aaronsis for following up. I am feeling better. The boyfriend has gone home so there's a bit of reprieve. Things are somewhat 'normal' but all it takes it another 'NO' for things to flare up again but I am determined to keep my cool this time and remember your advice. Fingers crossed. I don't like feeling this way because I know I am walking on egg shells around her. I am restless because I know the problem is not solved just temporarily shelved until the next event comes along.