Mothers who live vicariously through their daughter's sexuality......

A lady with whom I am acquainted (through work) has a teenaged daughter aged 16. This lady has born five children, and they all grew up in the custody of their father with minimal contact from mum during their formative years. A couple of years back though, the eldest daughter (then 13) decided she wanted to live with mum instead of dad, so it happened.

It also happens that in those intervening years, mum lived a fairly rampant lifestyle that has taken its toll on her physically and (it seems) psychologically as well. She is a spectacularly unattractive woman, with green (or missing) teeth, severe acne (even at 36) and she has the social maturity of a 16yr old herself.

On the other hand, her daughter is an absolute stunner. Tall, slender, and extremely pretty (if dumb!!). It’s turned into a dangerous combination I must say.

To be rottenly blunt, mum is using her daughter’s attractiveness as a way of validating HER worth. When the kid first came to live with her, she brought her to work in order to parade her around the ‘blokes’ for approval…and being young studs, they didn’t need any encouragement of course.

In more recent times (last week) the daughter has started working here after-school, and already has plenty of men sniffing around her like she’s a bitch on heat. And mum is revelling in the vicarious glory of her daughter being so popular…even though the kid went home last night after work with a 25yr old drug-using shithead. :frowning:

Some of us at work (over the years since kid has lived with mum) have tried to help her ‘guide’ her daughter (who has been sexually promiscuious for a while now) but I wonder whether mum is just too stupid, or whether she is affected by some sort of emotional/personality disorder that encourages the kids’ behaviour.

Is mum just bad, stupid (she** is** aware of what her daughter is ‘doing’) or is there some kind of remote-narcissism at play here?

Maybe mum is just proud that her daughter apparently doesn’t have any sexual hang-ups.
I don’t see why somebody else’s sexlife is your problem.
If she likes to screw around, hey, more power to her.

There has to be a pretty good reason why the courts awarded 5 kids to Dad to be raised, instead of the mom. Courts usually favor the mom. If she is missing teeth and in her 30’s, I’d have to say that drug and alcohol abuse are somewhere in her past.

It is a parents duty to teach their children appropriate behavior ( dressing and social skills , among many other thousands of little life lessons.) any parent who lives through their children, be it sports, educational acheivements, beauty pageants and so on, are people who are trying to make up for their own failed formative years ( perceived and real.) and should be flogged. Not allowing one’s child to grow on their own accord, not some plan to recapture a parental youthful whim.

Sadly, flogging is fobidden in this day and age and the Stockade is not allowed either. More’s the pity.

When the parental unit(s) fail in this respect, it is sometimes necessary to discreetly intervene. Perhaps just talking to the father or another family member citing your concern. A word or two saying how “Little Suzy seems to be hanging around older men…whom have a rough reputation. Mom doesn’t seem to notice, but others do. I just thought you should know.” and leave it at that.

If she is a teenager and really is involved in someway with someone older, (especially if drugs are involved) there are huge worries, I should think, about sex with a minor, drugs and stuff like that. A basic parental nightmare.

I have no idea of how to go about this conundrum at all. ( beside the flogging of the guy and putting some kind of electronic control taser device about her neck and her mom’s.

It is a shitty situation to be a spectator to. Like watching a trainwreck that everyone knows will happen but everyone is afraid to pick up the phone to call someone to say, " hey , there is a chance to stop this train wreck on the rails right now if we catch it early enough…" because they are afraid of being called a busybody or getting emotionally involved with someone else’s problems. And then the trainwreck happens and everyone shakes their head and says, " I knew it would happen" Being a member of the Human race is very hard and very predictable.

Over here, a 25-yr-old fucking a 16-yr-old is considered statutory rape. Sounds to me like her mom’s an accomplice. I’d call the police. Or at the very least, call the girl’s father; hopefully he’s a more fit parent.
(usually I consider the 18-yr-old “age of consent” rule pretty silly, but this seems like a case where it’s warranted)

Why do I see this assumption made so often on the SDMB? If by “over here”, you mean the U.S., it ain’t necessairly so.

Age of consent is determined by State law. In 38 states, the AOC is 16 or lower, and it’s 17 in several more states. 18 is the absolute max in any state, IIRC.

If you are 25 and your GF is 14, move to Missouri, where that’s ok.

In Austrailia, where kambuckta lives, AOC is 16, so no problem with a 25/16 relationship there.

Huh - thanks for explaining, I won’t make that assertion again. My bad.

At any rate, I think the OP is exactly right, that mother IS living vicariously through her daughter’s sexuality and is not protecting her appropriately. Sounds like an awful situation all around.

Perhaps it’s something your employer would be interested to know about - do they actively discourage workplace relationships? Then again, they don’t seem to care about having a druggie employed there…

I missed the 16-years old qualifier.
I thought she was young, but not that young.

I dunno. Sounds like “not my business” to me.

Prococious teenagers with trashy mothers isn’t exactly news. We have whole televisions shows about it in America. If you really want to help the girl, befriend her and help steer her through these troubled times, go ahea. But don’t be surprised if she has her own agenda. In any case, looking down your nose and tut-tutting about them isn’t going to do anyone any good.

Sounds all a bit “small town mentality” to me. (No disrespect meant to small town inhabitants in general, but down here in this region, small town folk tend to care, a little too much, about everyone else’s business. Every so often, such crops up amongst those in a work environment as well. Opinions and judgements about people passed around as quickly as the gossip.)

Sounds like the young woman has chosen to go her own way despite all the (I’m sure) helpful and concerned guidance. Considering said guidance is offered by people who consider her mother to be “a spectacularly unattractive woman, with green (or missing) teeth, severe acne (even at 36) and she has the social maturity of a 16yr old herself” – I’m not surprised the lass has chosen to go her own way.

At sixteen, I had my own sexual agenda, and my mother’s approval or disapproval would have meant nothing to me. I made some good decisions, and some bad decisions, but I wouldn’t lay any of them at her feet.

Is the girl a victim of some less than ideal parenting? Probably. But:

  1. It’s too late to do much about it now.
  2. It’s emphatically not your job anyway.
  3. It’s entirely possible that you don’t know as much about the situation as you think you do.

The point of this thread was not about the rightness or wrongness of the daughter being sexually active…of course that is her own ‘decision’ and I have no beef with that in any way shape or form.

I am, however, concerned that mum seems extremely keen to set up her daughter with fellas from work…and has done so since the kid was 13. THAT is, in my humble opinion, not only inappropriate, but bordering on some sort of illness…the nature of which I was hoping to get some feedback on from this board.

In other words, this is not a moralistic rant, but more a curious enquiry into the stuff that sees mothers live their own sexual lives vicariously through their daughters.

I’d call it an illness. I’ve seen it before but it’s pretty rare in polite society. Which is pretty much what makes it a polite society in the first place. It’s sad really. Despite what the law may say, motherhood is not a biological function.

You’re kidding, right? You’re not aware that until the twentieth century, most adults had some teeth missing by their mid-thirties? Read James Herriot some time - when he went into the RAF, they pulled four teeth on the basis of a dental exam, and this was (I think) 1939. He couldn’t have been more than thirty at the time.

Poverty and lack of dental hygiene are all it takes. In fact, you don’t need the lack of dental hygiene. I’m fanatical about brushing and flossing, but I’ve had at least a dozen root canals (I’m fifty). If I had been too poor to pay for a root canal and crown (which will set you back at least $1500 these days), I would have had to have those teeth pulled. I know a woman in her early thirties who already has several teeth gone - a root canal and crown don’t happen when you’re trying to raise two kids on $11K/year. And at least in NJ, which is more progressive than a lot of states, she was not able to get Medicaid to cover it, probably because the option of having the tooth pulled existed.

Mom didn’t start out with five kids, bad teeth, and a drinking/drug problem. At some point she was probably much like her daughter. The cycle continues like this for many many people.

Some people break cycles like this, others perpetuate it. It sucks to watch it happen because you can’t help someone who doesn’t think they need help. And you wonder why the kid would want to recreate a history that probably wasn’t too pleasant for her at all, but there she is, doing it anyway.

This is an example of a serious downward spiral: