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Granddaughter issues, need serious advice

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Old 07-27-2007, 02:42 PM   #1
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Default Granddaughter issues, need serious advice

I haven't spoken much about my older daughter.

Here are two of the problems.

1. For years, TK was getting more and more sick. Several years ago she was diagnosed with fibromyalgia. I know that can be painful. However, she has started going to another church. The girls still go to the old one. It has a wonderful youth program. TK's church has an adult singles program. She's starting to date again. This is not a bad thing. The problem is that she's staying out late (1AM after a class that ended at 9PM). She's gone back to school as well. The girls (A & M, 17 & 16) are getting mixed messages. The problem is that TK is dating someone who takes her dirt biking.
How can she dirt bike with fibromyalgia?
How can she do a lot of the activities she's doing now? I'm thinking that the fibromyalgia may have been a wrong diagnosis and it was stress related due to her marriage.

2. A wants a car. She drives TK's car to her college prep classes. They live in a mountain community and a dependable car is a must. She wants us to help her buy one. I'm not feeling comfy with that because I think she wants to move out on her own. She wants to continue college, but just not live with her mom. TK won't let the girls see their dad so I don't know where he would fit into this. How can I gently tell her "no"?

TIA for any help.
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Old 07-27-2007, 02:51 PM   #2
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Just explain to A that it would be stressful to your budget to help her buy a car.

As for TK and the dirt biking/fibromyalgia. My mom was diagnosed with fibromyalgia and she had good days and bad days. It could be that OR perhaps since she is in a good relationship her mental attitude has improved and she can "overcome" the pain that she had with fibromyalgia. I don't want to imply to those with fibromyalgia that it is "all in their head" but I know some people who have it and there are times where you wonder (with the level of their activity) if they really got the right diagnosis. There are other days when the person cannot get out of bed (for days at a time). Sometimes it sounds more like a bipolar or manic depressive problem. Just my opinion, though. I'm no doctor.
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Old 07-27-2007, 03:20 PM   #3
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The car issue is a hard thing. Does your granddaughter have a job? Maybe her mom could co-sign on a small loan for her so she can purchase a car? I know my grandpa helped with my first car, but it was only $1200 and I paid it off within a year since I was working. Maybe help her open a savings to save for that car she wants.
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Old 07-27-2007, 03:47 PM   #4
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Regarding the car, you tell her no, by telling her no. You don't have to give any reasons, and since you want to tell her gently, you tell her gently by using a gentle tone of voice. You can just say "I've thought this over carefully, and I have to say no." You can give reasons if you want to, but you don't have to.

As to the fibromyalgia, you can't judge whether a person has fibromyalgia by what they are able to do on any given day. A person can feel great one day, and be bedridden the next. There isn't any hard and fast rule on what a person can or should be doing, Some fibromites can run marathons, some can barely walk (and sometimes fluctuate between the two extremes, depending on the day). You learn by trial and error what brings on a flare, how bad a bad day can be, and how good a good day can be. On a good day you do what you can, and on a bad day you rest.

I have fibromyalgia, and it is very frustrating to feel great one day, and horrible the next. People do tend to assume it's all in your head or at least a matter of mind over matter. Worse, still you start to believe that yourself.

It is not a psychiatric disorder, but stress does affect it (which shouldn't be surprising - stress affects every physical disorder from hives to cancer).

When I am feeling good, I do tend to want to push myself and do as much as I can fit in. I have to be careful not to overdo it, but you know sometimes I just want a life, so I push myself, and then just suffer for the next two days.

Regular exercise actually helps reduce fibromyalgia flares. For me, physical exertion (within reason) doesn't bring on a flare nearly as much the weather (which I can't control, so I just have to deal with the pain that a drop in barometric pressure causes) and also sleep deprivation. And how much sleep I may need may vary from day to day. I have to rest when I'm tired, and ignore the clock.

If I take care of myself and avoid the flare triggers that I can, I can often live a fairly normal life. Still, I know that some friends compare my bad days to my good days and wonder how the one can be so good, and the other can be so bad, because I think that myself. It's just the nature of the disease.
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Old 07-27-2007, 03:52 PM   #5
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I'm not sure I understand what mixed messages are being sent to her daughters. Is it that church functions are supposed to not go well into the night? Or that the daughters are seeing the dirt-biking and fibromyalgia as incongruent?
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Old 07-27-2007, 04:24 PM   #6
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I am confused how 16 and 17 year old kids can be kept from seeing their father. I think they can legally make up their minds on that.
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Old 10-15-2007, 04:11 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alinnell View Post
Just explain to A that it would be stressful to your budget to help her buy a car.

As for TK and the dirt biking/fibromyalgia. My mom was diagnosed with fibromyalgia and she had good days and bad days. It could be that OR perhaps since she is in a good relationship her mental attitude has improved and she can "overcome" the pain that she had with fibromyalgia. I don't want to imply to those with fibromyalgia that it is "all in their head" but I know some people who have it and there are times where you wonder (with the level of their activity) if they really got the right diagnosis. There are other days when the person cannot get out of bed (for days at a time). Sometimes it sounds more like a bipolar or manic depressive problem. Just my opinion, though. I'm no doctor.
Thanks. We did tell her no. It broke my heart to do it, but we had to do that.

I'm learning so much about fibromyalgia.
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Old 10-15-2007, 04:13 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kaplods View Post
Regarding the car, you tell her no, by telling her no. You don't have to give any reasons, and since you want to tell her gently, you tell her gently by using a gentle tone of voice. You can just say "I've thought this over carefully, and I have to say no." You can give reasons if you want to, but you don't have to.
Thanks. It was heartbreaking, but we said no.

As to the fibromyalgia, you can't judge whether a person has fibromyalgia by what they are able to do on any given day. A person can feel great one day, and be bedridden the next. There isn't any hard and fast rule on what a person can or should be doing, Some fibromites can run marathons, some can barely walk (and sometimes fluctuate between the two extremes, depending on the day). You learn by trial and error what brings on a flare, how bad a bad day can be, and how good a good day can be. On a good day you do what you can, and on a bad day you rest.

I have fibromyalgia, and it is very frustrating to feel great one day, and horrible the next. People do tend to assume it's all in your head or at least a matter of mind over matter. Worse, still you start to believe that yourself.

It is not a psychiatric disorder, but stress does affect it (which shouldn't be surprising - stress affects every physical disorder from hives to cancer).

When I am feeling good, I do tend to want to push myself and do as much as I can fit in. I have to be careful not to overdo it, but you know sometimes I just want a life, so I push myself, and then just suffer for the next two days.

Regular exercise actually helps reduce fibromyalgia flares. For me, physical exertion (within reason) doesn't bring on a flare nearly as much the weather (which I can't control, so I just have to deal with the pain that a drop in barometric pressure causes) and also sleep deprivation. And how much sleep I may need may vary from day to day. I have to rest when I'm tired, and ignore the clock.

If I take care of myself and avoid the flare triggers that I can, I can often live a fairly normal life. Still, I know that some friends compare my bad days to my good days and wonder how the one can be so good, and the other can be so bad, because I think that myself. It's just the nature of the disease.

Thanks for this. It has helped.
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Old 10-15-2007, 04:17 PM   #9
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I'm not sure I understand what mixed messages are being sent to her daughters. Is it that church functions are supposed to not go well into the night? Or that the daughters are seeing the dirt-biking and fibromyalgia as incongruent?
I probably rambled and didn't make an understandable post.

These are not church activities. She goes out after class to many activities. She had told her girls that they are to study and get through school and not be out with friends. She has to study constantly and was saying she didn't have time for a social life. Then she starts this. The girls are getting such mixed messages.

Also, she wasn't answering her cell or let them know when she will be home. The first few times it happened, they stayed up worrying. They thought she'd driven over the side of the mountain or something. I think she answers her cell now.
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Old 10-15-2007, 04:22 PM   #10
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I am confused how 16 and 17 year old kids can be kept from seeing their father. I think they can legally make up their minds on that.

She managed to convince a judge that he should take a parenting class. The judge ordered a parenting teenage girls class. I don't know if he took the class but until he can prove it, he can't initiate contact with them. One of them wants to see him but TK can deny it until he brings some sort of proof to the courts.

TK is a councilling junkie. I don't mean to upset anyone on here who goes to therapy. However, I feel that it can become an addiction for some people. TK wanted to take the girls to councilling to tell them that he was getting remarried. I told her that they are old enough to understand and to just tell them. She did that and they aren't upset at all about it.
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Old 10-15-2007, 04:24 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mom2cole View Post
The car issue is a hard thing. Does your granddaughter have a job? Maybe her mom could co-sign on a small loan for her so she can purchase a car? I know my grandpa helped with my first car, but it was only $1200 and I paid it off within a year since I was working. Maybe help her open a savings to save for that car she wants.
We opted to not do it because I think it would cause problems for her relationship with her mother. Also, I've got 3 more behind her and I don't think I'll be able to help them all.
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Old 10-15-2007, 05:38 PM   #12
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Glad that my post helped. As a former probation officer and counselor, I'm a bit suspicious of the terms of visitation. Unless there's been verified abuse, this would not ordinarily be terms of visitation, and even then generally, a person may be prevented from UNSUPERVISED visits before completing a parenting class, but supervised visits are generally allowed (such as at a family member's home), especially if the noncustodial parent makes a request for such to the court. The classes are also held very frequently, usually at different times of the day so even shift workers can attend, and generally often take only a few weeks at most to complete. A certificate of completion is signed by the organization holding the class.

I agree that counseling can become unhealthy, but that's actually generally less of a concern in family counseling, and a good counselor will recognize it and encourage less frequent counseling in such cases. I admit, I am biased in this regard (otherwise, I've wasted 6 years of expensive education in the field of psychology), and wish "family counselors" were as common and as acceptable as "family doctors." I think people generally are uncomfortable with a "stranger" being privy to family matters, but an objective third party really can help address "mixed messages" and other issues that arise.

As to the mixed messages, at 16 and 17, I think the girls are past the impressionable stage, and are old enough to understand that their mother is not perfect, and may on occasion not follow her own advice. However, (personally) I don't see any mixed messages. I don't know what the girls' curfews are, but an adult woman surely should have a later curfew than her minor children, and 1:00 am doesn't seem unreasonable for an adult college woman of 19, let alone someone old enough to have a 17 year old daughter. I agree whole heartedly though that phone calls to keep the girls from worrying is a very reasonable expectation, and I'm glad that she seems to now realize that kids can worry just as parents can.

Obviously, I don't know the entire situation, but I think that's why counseling for her is super. Very few counselors are idiots, and THEY are going to recognize and push her to address issues including her parenting and example she is giving for her children.
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Old 10-15-2007, 05:45 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kaplods View Post
Glad that my post helped. As a former probation officer and counselor, I'm a bit suspicious of the terms of visitation. Unless there's been verified abuse, this would not ordinarily be terms of visitation, and even then generally, a person may be prevented from UNSUPERVISED visits before completing a parenting class, but supervised visits are generally allowed (such as at a family member's home), especially if the noncustodial parent makes a request for such to the court. The classes are also held very frequently, usually at different times of the day so even shift workers can attend, and generally often take only a few weeks at most to complete. A certificate of completion is signed by the organization holding the class.

Thanks. I can always count on you for sage advice.
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