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View Poll Results: What is the obvious main problem?
Dad 0 0%
Mom 3 11.54%
Bad parenting in general 5 19.23%
Other 18 69.23%
Voters: 26. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 04-14-2018, 03:07 AM
 
3 posts, read 1,565 times
Reputation: 25

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I am in need of some serious help. For my daughter's sake. I am a 28 year old father. I try my best, but has lead my daughter to something I can't comprehend.. She ran away.

Backround (Brief)
I grew up from a dysfunctional family communication always big issue and I resent my mom for years of alcoholism. My wife grew up with no father and a lazy mother of 7(who lived off the system,slept all day, let's kids run wild and basically gave up on life). My Wife of 10 years and I had this one and only child together right after high school. Within household No verbal abuse, no physical abuse, no name calling, or anything of that nature within. Wife and I don't really ever fight, if we argue it's rarely /never nfront of daughter and tempers or valume is controlled. My role - discipline, and responsibility. Wifes role - nurture and best friends. They weren't planed roles it's what we took to. Daughter is an absolute angel when I'm around. Second she with wife, friends, at schools or anywhere I'm not.. She let's loose and is impulsive the "bad" comes out. Wife allows it if im not around and I have to correct it (discipline) or it won't happen. If I tell Wife to discipline, daughter doesn't take it seriously. Basically (how I see it) wife is a kid herself because she knows I will take care the important stuff. My daughter has never displayed fits, rage outbreaks, tantrums, pathetic crying till she gets what she wants. I had zero tolerance for any of it and she learned that at early age. If we say no it means no, she accepts it without issue. If we ask her to do chores, homework, read, or anything, she stops what she's doing and does it. We always say please and thank you to her and her to us. None of this seems to hother her or upset her and seems to be no signs of despair, frustration, resentment, or stress. She is always smiling, ready to play, happy, cheerful go lucky kid. She has always been real good at making friends but struggling to keep them because my daughter gets upset if they don't do what she says or wants.

Warning signs -
Since her first day in school she has had issues with bullying other kids, kicking, she choked one girl her first week in kindergarten(luckily only choking incident)It seems she enjoys it and happens when she doesn't get her way. She thoroughly enjoys the opportunity to show her dominance. She gets in trouble for little things quite frequently. Last year the lying and minulating started. She will lie, manipulate, and bend truth to her will (its never ever her fault and she never in the wrong). I discipline her with a talk on little things, make her read for an hour on bigger things, and write long papers on who she hurts, effects, or reason(for bigger things like bullying). I have spanked her maybe 5 times her whole life and flicked her on the head once.. I apologized to her and said I was wrong for the flicking. The spankings and physical have not happened in over a year as I feel bad, and thinks it accomplish nothing. Past 6 months the frequency of bad behavior increased (as I give more punishment she seems it never happened and tells me what I want to hear to end it asap)then she's get in trouble again and again and lies and lies without care for consequences or just acting on impulse idk?

The "holy sh@$ moment" -
She walks home with friends after school most days. Two days ago she and another friend same age (only 8!)didn't come home. Cops were called, amber alert issued, half city out looking for her, 5k fb posts shared in couple hrs.. We all assumed the worst. Luckily though She/they were found behind a toy store 5 miles away at 8pm that night. After questioning we found out.... (I'm not lying)
They planed to run away cause their parents are mean. Right after school away they went. I then discovered in daughters backpack she had swiped my credit card, packed clothes, packed food, and stole probly 15-20 items from the toy store. She, as far as I know has never stolen anything until now.

I'm scared-
She was not worried, frightened, and seemed naturaly independent? She told me, she knew people would be looking and went beind store so couldn't be found. She showed zero no remorse until the police scolded her. I'm REALLY worried she doesn't think like a child her age. 8 year kids don't plan much, yet alone finances, clothing, and food? I know she's smart but this I'm scared of. Alot of her bad behavior has been impulsive, I believe I can work with that.. This was planned, we found out, a few days in advance.

I'm lost? -
This sounds like a child from a empty family and extreme violence high stress environment. My wife is very affectionate and good loving mom, Im strict but tell her have a good day at school I love you. She tells me she loves me before leaving. I buy her toys, take her on bike rides and park time to time. She loves to cuddle up with me during movies. She gets fed well, never ever hit or abused(the 1 flick can be argued, light spankings okay maybe?) We see each other every day, hug,atleast thought we were descent parents. We live in nice clean higher end apartment, drive nice cars, financially stable. Good jobs,. We try the best we can. Sure we're not perfect, but is environment so stressful it requires planned escape.
Please help with advice, as a father I want the best for her. This is very unhealthy behaviors for a such young child. I believe she is a good kid truely, I can't put a finger on this wtf moment?

Advice please!
The way things are going is not good. Help me save this little girl/fragile soul. she deserves it and I don't care about how much morey or work it takes. I appreciate any advice or referrals to good proffesional help

Thanks for your time
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Old 04-14-2018, 07:56 AM
 
Location: Wisconsin
16,432 posts, read 15,842,040 times
Reputation: 38601
It is extremely unusual for an eight year old to run away, and even more unusual for them to have a planned exit (with a bag packed with food & clothes & a credit card). Please ask your pediatrician for a referral for a good child psychologist or child psychiatrist. You will probably also need family counseling and education on parenting so that you and your spouse work together on rules, behavior and consequences.

This probably will not be a "quick fix" but may take months, even a year or two, for your family to get back on track.
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Old 04-14-2018, 08:22 AM
 
Location: San Antonio, TX
10,853 posts, read 18,804,716 times
Reputation: 25075
Right now she's not ready to walk to and from school alone. Either you or your wife need to go drop her off and pick her up. You should also take her to a psychologist, or at the very least, ask her pediatrician if they would recommend that she sees one.

My sister was running away at that age, but never far. There wasn't really anywhere fun to go within walking distance, so she'd just walk out to some field and sit under a tree until we found her.
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Old 04-14-2018, 09:40 AM
 
660 posts, read 599,261 times
Reputation: 888
Quote:
Originally Posted by germaine2626 View Post
It is extremely unusual for an eight year old to run away, and even more unusual for them to have a planned exit (with a bag packed with food & clothes & a credit card). Please ask your pediatrician for a referral for a good child psychologist or child psychiatrist. You will probably also need family counseling and education on parenting so that you and your spouse work together on rules, behavior and consequences.

This probably will not be a "quick fix" but may take months, even a year or two, for your family to get back on track.
+1

Op - it's extremely unusual for an 8 year old to have a pre-planned run away from home like this especially is your home environment is as you described. I have an 8 year old who is pretty smart and I can't see her planning sick a thing.
I think this is a cry for help. And you need to get a referral for child therapist to figure out what's going on with her. You may also need counseling as a family.

A lot of the things you've said let's me suspect that this is not going to be a short term thing. Choking another child 1st week of school (5 years old?) just because they didn't do what she wanted? No remorse or tears? She needs help.

I wish you and your family good luck. You sound like a good dad. Play don't give up. Early intervention worth hard work and love is so helpful for children needing help.
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Old 04-14-2018, 09:57 AM
 
10,090 posts, read 6,464,598 times
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Why are you looking for who to blame? Its time to get help from a child psychologist.
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Old 04-14-2018, 09:59 AM
 
606 posts, read 316,990 times
Reputation: 819
My grandmother had a mom who tried to be, "friends," and described it as a poor decision.

Perhaps your wife needs to be seen equally as a disciplinarian. She is not a peer, but her mother.

I think she is not mature enough to walk home from school (obviously.)

And, perhaps you should engage in empathy training at home and professionally.

I'm guessing a licensed professional will be contacted....?
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Old 04-14-2018, 09:59 AM
 
Location: Nantahala National Forest, NC
16,786 posts, read 3,454,055 times
Reputation: 22371
Quote:
Originally Posted by germaine2626 View Post
It is extremely unusual for an eight year old to run away, and even more unusual for them to have a planned exit (with a bag packed with food & clothes & a credit card). Please ask your pediatrician for a referral for a good child psychologist or child psychiatrist. You will probably also need family counseling and education on parenting so that you and your spouse work together on rules, behavior and consequences.

This probably will not be a "quick fix" but may take months, even a year or two, for your family to get back on track.


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Old 04-14-2018, 10:35 AM
 
Location: Rochester, WA
3,810 posts, read 2,020,893 times
Reputation: 10458
I ran away once when I was a kid about the same age. I was gone several hours, til I got hungry and went home. I assumed everyone who had ever been mean to me would have learned their lesson by then. Unfortunately, in my day we played outside all the time, and no one had even noticed we were gone.

Kids have always dreamed of running away. I just asked, and Hubby said he ran away as a kid too! I wouldn't make too much of it, honestly. It's part of growing up and resisting authority and testing boundaries and becoming independent.
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Old 04-14-2018, 10:35 AM
 
Location: Wisconsin
16,432 posts, read 15,842,040 times
Reputation: 38601
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hedgehog_Mom View Post
Right now she's not ready to walk to and from school alone. Either you or your wife need to go drop her off and pick her up. You should also take her to a psychologist, or at the very least, ask her pediatrician if they would recommend that she sees one.

(snip).
Oops, I missed that she was walking to and from school unsupervised. In the school districts where I live and/or taught the school would never allow an eight year old to do that (unless there was a responsible older sibling or neighbor who was "in charge" and they had signed permission from the parents of all the children involved).
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Old 04-14-2018, 10:40 AM
 
Location: Wisconsin
16,432 posts, read 15,842,040 times
Reputation: 38601
Quote:
Originally Posted by Diana Holbrook View Post
I ran away once when I was a kid about the same age. I was gone several hours, til I got hungry and went home. I assumed everyone who had ever been mean to me would have learned their lesson by then. Unfortunately, in my day we played outside all the time, and no one had even noticed we were gone.

Kids have always dreamed of running away. I just asked, and Hubby said he ran away as a kid too! I wouldn't make too much of it, honestly. It's part of growing up and resisting authority and testing boundaries and becoming independent.
While I am sure that some 2nd and 3rd graders "dream of running away", how many plan it out with a friend, steal a parent's credit card, pack food & clothes and then run away? I really doubt that is what you and your husband did as kids, at least not at that young age.
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