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Dealing with a volitile 13 year old without turning into a blubbering mess

Community Member

My 13 year old daughter is a handful.

She has always been a full on kid right from the moment she entered the world, it’s just her personality. She is very reactive and loud and quite self centred.

Her entry into high school this year has not been a smooth one but she is slowly finding her feet after a lot of grief from our end.

The problems arise when she looses her temper or mouths off. She always needs to have the last say.

I then lose my temper and yell at her which then creates a big argument.

She goes to school in tears, my partner and I argue because he tells me he doesn’t want to be around this tense situation and doesn’t want the baby to be either (he is 13 year olds step father) I call in sick to work because I can’t cope with life and then end up crying all day because of how shit of a mother I am.

Parenting is so hard.

I don’t know what I’m doing but everyone is looking to me for answers.

Nothing I do is ever good enough and no one ever tells me I am doing a good job.

I feel so unworthy and crappy about myself when I am around my family.

At work I am bright, bubbly, smart, someone people look to for guidance and they voice their appreciation when I provide it.

How can I be two different people.

Im so lost.

5 Replies 5

Valued Contributor
Valued Contributor

Oh mum to 3 girls, I’m sorry you’re going through this. Your reactions are perfectly understandable and the subsequent fallout inevitable, this does not make you a shit mum, you’re just human and we all dislike conflict. Your daughter‘s reactive and loud personality will be amplified during these teen years due to hormonal changes. The problem with you is how to deal with these outbursts without engaging or being dragged in. I think that family counseling may be beneficial in order to develop strategies to deal with these conflicts and have something in place for when she wants to raise volatile subjects. Do you seem to fight over the same issues a lot of the time, or different things each time?

Community Champion
Community Champion

Welcome Mum to 3girls's to the forum.

Parenting is so hard, I agree, been there done that. My 13 year old was loud, opinionated , volatile and I felt like rubbish. Her dad said all the conflict was my fault. it is tough.

I realised when I lost my temper the argument would escalate so I learnt to move away or say nothing.

Somehow we survived and she is now mid 30s working in social welfare.

You are not 2 people. At work you have a definite role with positive or constructive feedback.

AS a mum it seems we only get criticism and no praise.

Juliet mentioned family counselling or maybe there is a counsellor at school.

You need to look after yourself and your health.


Thanks for replying. You don’t know how much it means.

I have just been on the phone organising some couples counseling which has the opportunity to move into whole family sessions.

Hi mum of 3 girls,

Thats great news and will also give you and your partner the opportunity got get on the same page before bringing your daughter in. I sincerely wish you all the best, please let us know how you get on x

Hi mum of 3 girls,

Thanks for getting back to us. I am pleased you are having couples counselling and then possibly family counselling. like Juliet I am interested I. How you get on at counselling,

You can post here anytime you want to as this is a supportive place.