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What can I legally do about my 16 year old daughter who is emotionally and verbally abusive towards me?

Las Vegas, NV |

She has broken numerous items in my home and often enters my bedroom (I was forced to put a lock on my door due to her stealing from me) when I am trying to work or sleep and refuses to leave, effectively holding me hostage until I give into her demands. She stays up all night on the internet (I can't just turn it off because she attends online school due to her antisocial tendencies). She refuses to listen to me, won't clean up after herself, leaving her room, the bathroom and kitchen filthy, and constantly warns and threatens me about what will happen if I don't do what she wants. She has not physically abused me yet, but I fear it is only a matter of time, especially because she is a very large girl and uses her size to threaten me. Do I have to put up with this until she's 18?

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Attorney answers 4

Posted

You can call the police whenever she does something illegal. As long as it is not a crime of serious violence, she would likely be charged as a juvenile. If she crosses the line and strikes you, it would be considered Battery Constituting Domestic Violence. You can also kick her out of your home if she continues the behavior.

Asker

Posted

I was not aware that it was legal to kick a 16 year old out of the house. I don't want her wandering the streets of Las Vegas alone, I simply want to be treated with the respect that i deserve and to end the out of control behavior, threats, and emotional abuse that I'm suffering.

Thomas D. Boley

Thomas D. Boley

Posted

There are parenting classes available that could help you with the skills necessary to deal with problem teenagers. Check with the family courts.

Asker

Posted

She is far beyond that and frankly she is the one who needs to be taking classes/getting help, not me. I have raised 4 successful children before her who are either in or have graduated from college. I am confident in my parenting skills. I am just interested in knowing what all my options are. Right now she thinks nothing can be done to her, and if I can tell her otherwise, it might help rein in her behavior. If not, at least I know my options.

Posted

As Mr. Boley said, call the police.

She needs to get into the system where she can get help. If she is turned loose on the wold at 18 still acting like this . . .

Asker

Posted

How does one go about getting a child "into the system"? I have 4 older children who are college students/graduates and I have never encountered anything like this before. I wouldn't know where to start. I'm not going to call the police to my home and embarrass myself in my neighborhood. I would prefer to get her help quietly because the profession I am in would not look kindly on a big COPS style debacle involving my family. Should I consult a lawyer or is there somewhere else I can turn? Totally out of my element here and would appreciate being pointed in the right direction.

Posted

As my colleagues have answered, you can call the police and probably should. You can password protect your computer so she can only use it when you log her in, which keeps her off it in the middle of the night. If she has a cell phone, take it away. Don't buy her anything but food, and only healthy food. When she threatens you, be ready to "threaten" back with what your next steps will be if she cannot behave. You should also be seeking assistance from CPS/social services and finding other juvenile resources. There are programs available to try and work with her, including shipping her off to "boot camp" or boarding school if she cannot behave at home. Your child has become a bully, and needs to be dealt with in the same manner that you would deal with any other bully.

Responses are for general information purposes only, and are based on the extremely limited facts given. A consultation with an attorney experienced in the area of law(s) indicated in the question is highly recommended. Information and advice given here should not be relied upon for any final action or decision, as the information is limited by its nature to the question asked and the fact(s) presented in that question. THIS RESPONSE DOES NOT CREATE AN ATTORNEY/CLIENT RELATIONSHIP, particularly considering that the names of the parties are unknown.

Posted

Please heed Ms. Whitbeck's answer. At some point you lost control. You need to gain it back, and that will require outside assistance.

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