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SmoothEmeraldOasis's avatar

What are the various ways to give my middle daughter support both moral or otherwise?

Asked by SmoothEmeraldOasis (806points) August 16th, 2010

My daughter has been away living out of state and she is planning to come home, of which I am totally elated for, but am concerned that she may not have matured enough to be able to set a goal andmove on in life. She was always the one that her father went to and released his aggression on. When I was around the house and not working, I ofcourse intervened and he would say that I just babied her too much. Later I found out that he did that because she favored me in appearance and not his mother, whom was deceased by then. Long story short, we divorced and he left out the country and neither the children and I have heard from him again to this date.

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7 Answers

Seaofclouds's avatar

I think the best thing you can do is talk to her and listen to her. Find out what she wants out of life and encourage her to go after it. Be there for her and let her know that she can come to you when she needs help.

skfinkel's avatar

There might be much anger that she has, some of which she may be aware of and some not. Perhaps she is not moving on because of the problems with her father when she was younger—things like that can really hang a person up for a while. She might be helped by talking with a good therapist. Certainly if you can not be critical of her (like her lack of goal-setting), but support her and let her express these hard feelings, that might be good as well. It is really good that she is coming home though. I hope things go well for both of you.

wundayatta's avatar

Life is one long maturation process. She learned what she learned, and she’ll have more learning to do before her life is over.

You don’t say why you are concerned about her ability to move on. Did something happen, or is this the old hurt from her father? Why is she coming home? What was she doing while away from home?

Whatever happens, the most important thing is to have open communication. If you are judgmental or overly didactic, you won’t have good communications. Just help her feel safe and help her work towards her goals. Let her come to you, Always show you are open to her for when she does want to talk. Don’t be overly invasive about her life or feelings or plans. That’ll make her feel guilty and draw away.

Good luck.

SmoothEmeraldOasis's avatar

@wundayatta – I agree with on that live is one liong maturation process. The economy is one main reason that she can not move on. So instead of just slothing about, she has returned to college and is working on her Administrative Medical Assistant Associate Degree. As far as the old hurt from what her father did, yes that is still stewing within her, she fells cheated that he decided to not be in her and her siblings life. She is coming home because she is way past home sick and misses all of her family. Thanks , I have always showed her that she can come to me to talk or anything she may feel she needs from me. I also do give her her space. I am excited to be able to be with my grandson again.


I was number 3 of 4 daughters and I felt that I was never validated as one of the children. I worked very hard to get their attention with poems under their pillows. Trying to be of help to whatever they were doing, but I just never felt it. Finally when i was in my 50’s they let me know how they felt about me. I was finally validated, and all it took was them to say a few words. From that point on, I was hard to stop. I was on top of the world and could do anything. And I have done just that, whatever I wanted to do I tried to do and it is a great feeling. VALIDATION does wonders.

Dr_Lawrence's avatar

Anything you can do to support the development and maintenance of her self-esteem will do the best things you can do to encourage her to make good choices in her life and to realize her potential.

Battousai87's avatar

I think just talking to her should do the trick. there is nothing that can ever take the place of your showing your support and care for her through talking to her. Even if she is angry and repressed from the abuse she sustained in the past, talking to her, and with her, and treating her perhaps not completely as an equal (since you are the athority figure in her life and she should respect you) but you do have to make sure she knows you respect her. If you really want to go for gold set up something that just the two of you can do for the day, or for an hour even. go to lunch, go for ice cream, go for a walk, whatever she might like to do, and talk to her. Ask her how she’s doing, tell her you’re proud of her for the things she does.
If, and only IF, you feel that it is right and she needs to talk about her father, then bring it up as casually as possible, and brace yourself because it may set off a flood of any number of things from her. Also if she doesn’t feel like talking about it have your next talking point ready to go to change the subject so that you don’t end up sitting there waiting which will pressure her to either pull herself back and change the subject of she may just withdraw.
Be careful, listen, and make sure that you let her know how important she is to you, how much you care about her, how proud you are of her, and make sure she knows that you are there for her no matter what. If she wants to she’ll open up to you, if not she may want to wait or perhaps she might want to overcome any of her problems herself, in which case just letting her know that you are always there for her if she needs you no matter what, will be more than plenty, a safety net when you’re trying to do things on your own can make her so much more successful and confident, knowing that if she tries her hardest, puts everything she has into it and comes up short for some reason, she has you to fall back on.

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