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Problems w/ teenage son
May 6, 2001
10:56 am
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Anonymous
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I'm fed up!!! I'm a single mom with an out of control teenager. He is 16, been expelled from school, and decides to smoke marijuana on occasions because it makes him feel relaxed. I have him in counseling, and have applied for a Youth Challenge Program where he will be for 5 months IF he gets accepted (we won't know until June). He was always such a good kid, but it seems he had a brain explosion recently and his behavior has radically changed. I CAN'T TAKE IT ANYMORE!!!!!!!!! I'm angry and depressed and just feel that my whole life is out of control because of this. Please help!

May 6, 2001
8:00 pm
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Lydia
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Teenagers can really pull at our heart-strings, can't they? It sounds like you are on the right track in obtaining counseling for him. Are you also involved in the counseling?

My son, now 20, went through a rough period in high school. He was 16 at the time when things took a turn for the worse. I didn't like the crowd he was hanging out with, his grades dropped, he was always "out" and he withdrew from me.

I took a chance, against the advice of some people, and placed him in a private Christian school for one year with the promise that if he straightened up, he could return to his school again. Praise God, it worked well for us both. It gave him a fresh start and gave me hope for change.

He graduated with Honors and went to college with a scholarship. It took a great deal of emotional energy and sacrifice from my end. I put a lot of emphasis on building trust and communication with him.

I'm wondering why your son was expelled and for how long? Is he remorseful? Does he understand about "the rules in life" that we must follow?

Perhaps his father can be influential to him. Does he have a good relationship with him? I would encourage any relationship seperate from his current peers.

Also, does he have a job or other responsibilities?

I feel for you and your frustration with this situation. Your son needs you now at this crossroads in his life.

God Bless and by all means, vent your feelings. It's so good for you!

May 7, 2001
1:39 am
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amarjit
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hi.i`m the only in my family and i understand howit feels for a mom when the son d`s like this.i`m sorry i can`t help any order but i`ll pray in my hearth that he will also learn how to understand a mother feelings

May 7, 2001
6:35 am
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janes
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Love him but not what he's doing. Pray without ceasing...my daughter taught me how to do that.

We all bring that wee baby home "knowing" what their lives are going to be. We plan and plan and have expectations. and more expectations...
How they look, what they do, who they like who they don't , what grades they'll get.

Raising them doesn't help. They NEED us for so long we fal into SAVING them from themselves.

YOU don't need to SAVE him anymore. He is almost grown. Counseling, a job while he is expelled. Rules arund YOUR home..these are fine. If you find pot...turn him into the authorities.

His decisions are not YOURS to make. You can guide but his life IS his life and this is the most difficult thing for a mom to see.

You need to go to counseling too. Find him a moentor at chruch, a community volunteer program where he has to help the less able.

I would also suggest the proverbial "piss test" to check if he is on drugs...if he is...put him in rehab.

Tough love is tough on us all.

Olympian skier Tommy Moe got into drugs...when he found out Tommy's dad moved the family to the wilds of Alaska.

Maybe you can't do that...just keep preaching future future future and remind him his life choices are his.

Regardless of what he ends up as..it's up to him. He is in god's hands.

Lose the feelings in your heart and mind that this is your fault, your responsibility or that he is letting you down. It makes your life tough..but I bet it's no picnic for your son either.

Has he been checked for ADD/ADHS, deprssion, anxiety etc. Have they ruled out emotional disorders and learning problems?

Good luck.

May 7, 2001
10:41 am
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Cici
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why is it that everyone i know has either had a rough time in adolescence or has a child having a rough time? I think it's a developmental issue - like the desire for independence or something.

of course at 16 they can't be independent but they can start to learn how to care for themselves. How about giving him more personal responsibility? ie - get a job, do your own laundry or stink, etc.? I kind of wish I'd learned all that before I actually had to leave home.

May 7, 2001
12:12 pm
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Molly
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We loose them so fast, and its the friends that do the conning and we buy into it. Slowly the language changes, then the dress, then the attitude, sometimes it can happen in just one week. My sis caught her son with the pot pipe, and immediately took him to the hospital for drug testing, she cut no slack. Much to her surprise, and mine for that matter, the children have a right to refuse, so in home testing is what you are reduced to. Strict, strict, strict. Not in school, then home school, or continued practice for the GED, then into College. Immediately disconnection from all friends, immediate change of clothes, and that means no sporting of tatoos, blue hair, or piercings, Controll over music and identity with things that are not acceptable, No cash, and watch where you put yours. Constant things to do all day, including some sort of daily group like a kid AA, or NA, don't let him go alone with the grown ups, no need to make the influence worse. he needs to feel the pain of his actions, so that HE makes the choice, a better one for him self. You need to go to a parent class, tough love, or something to do with kids and drugs. This is going to be your job 24/7, with lots and lots of love, and more love, so he gets that this is just parenting, and his choice indicating that he had to much freedom so now we must do it all over again. He has no rights, he lost your trust, so you do get togothrough the back packs, and drawers, and question every move he makes. No unsupervised telephone, no unsupervised e-mail, or playing on the internet. No unsupervised time with friends, or at the mall. Church groups help too, and just let some of his talk roll off his back, make him the house slave, he had a chance to be a normal responsible teen and blew it, of course if he had a car its gone. Is he on probation, they will support you with this, and make a mom violation, a probation violation. use it if you have to. Your alternative to all this effort, is to completely loose him emotionally, and let him do his path which will be in and out of your home inbetween the system . It can turn around, my nephew is doing good, he now is on 4 hockey teams, just got his drivers license, and is looking at college, it took 3 years, he got caught at 15.
As the boy rises to the occasion, you can implement the rewards slowly, but watch his friends, keep him busy, give him an outlet for his energy, and keep the studies focused, home school. sorry mom, this just must kill you. keep the faith, keep the love

May 13, 2001
10:02 am
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Anonymous
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May 13, 2001
10:17 am
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Anonymous
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Thank you all for your suggestions, comments, prayers. I decided one day this week to pull one of his tricks and not come home until late at night. He was actually wondering where I had been. When I told him to sit down, we need to talk, much to my surprise, he listened!!! I told him I couldn't live like this anymore and he would have to leave my house. I also let him know how much I love him and am doing/would do anything to help him and that if he did not change his friends and the way he has been acting that he was going to end up in jail and I would no longer have anything to do with him. Apparently, it worked!!! I'm not saying he has totally gotten back on track, but for the past 5 days, he seems to be the son I had before he went out of control. He said he does not want to smoke pot any longer and that whatever was wrong with him (he didn't even know?) is over now. We will see, but at least the storm has calmed for now and I thank God for that. Our relationship seems to be normal once again. I will take things one day at a time. Thank you all!!!

May 13, 2001
10:43 am
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Lydia
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Keep on your toes!! Now that your son seems to be getting back on track, don't let that blind you to the possibility that he could slip again.

Sometimes kids will say or do anything to ease the pressure a bit. What you're striving for is consistent behavior....so praise him for his efforts but remain observant.

Best of Luck to you both.

May 13, 2001
1:53 pm
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janes
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Now...make ;about 6 months of counseling session sFOR THE TWO OF YOU.

An outside person will help you both make the transition to your sons adulthood.

Keep up the good work

May 13, 2001
5:21 pm
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Molly
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Don't get comfortable, I think the 6 months of sessions would help. Actually they should possibly be required, all mothers of teens need counseling as bad as the teens do. Its insane to do alone,

May 14, 2001
12:50 pm
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Obu
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Mom, I certainly understand and feel your concern, I am also a Mom to a 16 year old with autism, so talk about challenges??? He started to get really out of hand about 2 years ago and I didn't ignor it, but was helpless as to what to do with and for him. I put him counseling and am in counseling myself, helping so much. But, my son is not into drugs, but he has extreme anger, agression and general rebellion towards all adults, especially me. So, I had him placed in what is known as temporary therapeutic foster care here where we live, he lives with a family, goes to school everyday, is calming down, missing home; (oh by the way, when the county took him away, he stated to me that he never wanted to come back, and SURPRISE, he already wants to return home, but this is for at least (6) months, then when school is out, he will go into a supervised facility for children with disabilites to work with great intensity on all of his
issues. Are things perfect now? (No), Do I regret taking that step and going to court to have him placed (N0), Do I see improvement in him, he was with me for exactly (24) hours this past weekend for a visit. Does he show more respect for himself as well as his home and especially (Me); his mother and provider, (YES). Parents never, ever quit trying, at this point; I chose to be his parent as well as becoming his friend.

May 17, 2001
3:02 pm
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chippy
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I agree....do not get comfortable....get counseling.

My son has ADD and we had many challenges.....he is 19 and improved but we still are on top of him.....I really want him to move out soon but that is probably not possible yet.

Kids will push you to and past your limit and continue to do so.....take control and action fast if slippage...if I would have know how bad the teens years are I would have reconsidered having children. But don't despair...out of the darkness comes the light and it does slowly slowly get better....Bless you.

May 17, 2001
3:43 pm
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Ladeska
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Good, good advice going on here. The only thing I would add is that you need to try and find a way to facilitate a good "big brother" kind of guy in his life. He needs a good role model to hang with. Maybe if you know one in the family or just friends-wise or whatever you could maybe guide this into being. Sometimes people just need to be asked off the cuff - Hey, having a problem over here and he needs a "guy" to look up to. Choose well though and think of "their connection".

Basically, guys that age need to be "affirmed" like crazy. Get down on his level alot like you guys just did - shoot straight with him often. Say - hey, whaz up, get over here...talka ta me! And wrestle him into it if you have to. Cut up and carry on with him, too, but make that time where you just sit and say - talk to me and then aim more for the affirming connection. Be firm and have boundaries - but stretch to see what makes him tick, what he wants to do, etc. Sometimes the hormones are just doing their thing more than anything else. Massive waves going here and there. Makes a guy - aggressive....big time. Also - make sure he's not doing steriods. That will make him majorly aggressive as well and with a different personality.

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