As I write this....

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by DazedandConfused, Jan 30, 2010.

  1. DazedandConfused

    DazedandConfused Active Member

    husband is driving to a neighboring town with Son to pay for, and have Son apologize, for stealing some mechanical pencils from an Office Depot. husband went there to pick up an ink cartridge for my printer. Son apparently wandered off to look at computers.

    Anyway, long story short, Son comes home and changes out of his pants. husband (who does the laundry when he's home) found twelve of the pencils in his pocket. So, we confront him and his first story is that he won them in a raffle in his science class (they earn tickets for good behavior). So, I tell him I will email her and ask if that was true. He begins claiming that I don't know her email (she works at the same school district as me, so I simply have to look her up in the staff directory). I show him on my laptop that I got the email address. So, then, the story changes, a friend gave them to him (but I have ways to find out that too). Then, he changes his story again...

    Finally, husband says, "Either you fess up or I am driving you directly to the police station". So, he finally does. I don't know what is going to happen. They may call the police. Probably not, though. Honestly, I don't care. I'm so fed up with that boy right now.

    He's put our family through Hades this past couple of weeks. Last week, Daughter asked him a simple question, and he exploded calling her filthy names and threatening her. Daughter has had it with him. He's been horrible to her for years and now she wants nothing to do with him anymore. Daughter has always wanted some kind of bond with him, but he's so rude and angry towards her. He's been that way since he was five or six. I have never understood it. Last week was the final straw. Daughter couldn't even stand to be in the same house as him and went and stayed with a friend for a few days.

    Last Sunday I invited my Mom over for a nice Sunday dinner. Son has always been very close to my Mom and she adores him. Well, Son had been ramping up for a meltdown all afternoon. I tried to stay calm, and detach, but he just wouldn't stop being so nasty while I'm trying to cook.I thought maybe once my Mom got there, he would stop.

    My Mom comes over and he's even nasty to her. Then, Daughter screams that he's tearing our whole family apart. They both start screaming at each other. It was horrible. My Mom was appalled and speechless. I try to keep my difficult child life away from other family and other parts of my life. It just heaps more stress on me when others have to witness it too. I HATE being pitied and I HATE having people give me that "I feel sorry for you" look. My Mom began to cry she was so upset. Son is banned from her home (she lives up the street) for one month. She was crying as she told him because she just doesn't know what else to do. She sees what it does to me and she feels so angry.

    So were so many other things.....but I just don't have the energy to write about all of them.

    A couple of calls from the school. Just skirted a suspension for a fight, etc., etc.

    Oh, and we go to his regular psychiatrist appointment and psychiatrist is out on sick leave and may not return. Apparently, I missed the voice mail they left. So, I have to find another psychiatrist. Just great. I found him barely a year ago. I liked him.

  2. smallworld

    smallworld Moderator

    Dazed, I'm really sorry. It sounds like a new psychiatrist can't be found soon enough.

    May I ask what medication doses he's taking? How long has it been since they've been changed?

    I know your mom means well, but I'm wondering if your son might do better if rather than banning him from visiting her for a month, she invited him to her house for short frequent visits. My son's Residential Treatment Center (RTC) operates on the principle of relationship building, which means that when a child is struggling, he needs lots of positive interactions with important people in his life. That can mean relatives or friends with whom he can form connections.

    Hang in there and hugs.
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2010
  3. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    I agree that would have helped (grandma inviting him over for brief visits, just as much as he can handle) but because the prohibition has been put in place, I think it has to now stand.

    However, maybe once he's endured the ban then perhaps G'ma could invite him over for one hour, for afternoon tea. If she uses this time to teach him some basic social skills (small talk, how to take tea with someone socially etc) then at least it could give him confidence in these situations if he's well practiced.

    I'm not excusing him, but Daughter losing it with him was NOT helpful. I know she's a easy child and that PCs often bear the brunt of the turmoil, but it's something I've also noticed - PCs, especially those "not fully cooked" and even those who are now adults, often have a very short, inappropriately short, fuse for their difficult child siblings. And they are not backward in coming forward and telling them off, either, which can cause all sorts of simmering problems to boil over.

    We saw this with easy child and difficult child 3 over his birthday weekend - we went to the theatre as a family. difficult child 3 was a bit anxious beforehand (as he always is with theatre or a movie he hasn't seen before) and so husband & I were aware of the need to keep his anxiety level soothed down a bit. We let him have his Nintendo DS with him to play at quiet moments as we know it helps him stay calm.
    But in the restaurant before the show, easy child immediately chipped difficult child 3 when he got out his DS. I had just said it was OK, she really should have stayed out of it. I had to correct her in front of difficult child 3, which meant she lost face as an authority figure. But really, there was no need for her to be fussy about it. He had politely waited until we chose what we were going to eat and had placed our order. It was not a fancy restaurant, it was simply a place to get a fast, good quality sit-down meal. It was also a Chinese restaurant, and they are extremely flexible when it comes to children in their restaurants. Nothing pretentious here.

    When we travelled in NZ, easy child was on difficult child 3's casr then, too, because he was gaming in the car while we were driving around, and gaming when we stopped to eat. Some of the time we supported her strictness over this because he DOES need to put it down sometimes. But she tried to push far too hard on it, she really needed to back off a bit and allow some leeway.

    It was the same yesterday with easy child 2/difficult child 2, behaving like difficult child 3's mother instead of his sister. While I was there! I am quite capable of managing my son!

    Sometimes difficult child 3 clashes with husband. Sometimes husband is right, sometimes the problem gets out of hand because husband is pushing that little bit too hard. Sometimes difficult child 3 is being reactive because he's hypersensitive to husband's criticism. Lately there have been a few times when I've had to step into an escalating altercation with, "Stop! Pause this! Both of you, cut it out NOW! Now tell me, what is going on?"

    I use "pause" because it is gaming terminology. It has a strict, specific meaning. I am then more likely to get a break in them trying to kill one another, and be able to get enough information to adjudicate the situation. Often I am tempted to bang heads together. A few times I've said to difficult child 3, "If you had two heads I'd bang them together." It has meant that sometimes I chastise husband in front of difficult child 3, but only if it's already obvious to difficult child 3 that his dad is in the wrong - I'm not changing his opinion one iota. But the good thing - if he's wrong, husband will apologise to difficult child 3. And difficult child 3 needs to experience this in order to, in his turn, learn to apologise when HE is wrong.

    At the moment we are working towards learning "unconditional apology". It's going to take time.

    Oh, and good for your husband to drive him to the store to make difficult child apologise. It's the BEST punishment for the crime. The only addition would be at the store's discretion, if they decided they didn't want the merchandise back - they could insist that difficult child pay for the pencils.

    Have you tried to find out why he took them? It is probably worth digging for, I think he needs to understand what tempted him so he won't be so easily tempted next time.

  4. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    I am sorry the weekend was so rough. I hate weekends like that, but am very familiar with them.

    We had the theft issue too. Mostly Wiz took stuff he knew we would not allow or that he did not have money at the time to pay for and we would not pay for it. We learned years before that loaning him the money just meant, in his mind, that he could have it with-o paying for it. Getting the money out of him just was not possible. We even tried buying the item to hold it until he earned the money to pay for it. Wiz would just go and steal the item from us, again not paying for it. He even cut through a locked wooden box to get at $3 item. Drove me batty.

    Taking him back to the store and letting them impose whatever consequences they decide is a very good step. But it is very hard too.

    For a while I gave up on the family dinners. Just didn't do them. The outbursts, meltdowns, demands and awful behaviors were exhausting. And then Wiz would go off. NOT joking or LOL or anything. First the family would decide that Wiz was fine and all the things I did to help were unnecessary cause he was "just fine" at the beginning of the meal (even when he was clearly NOT fine, but not screaming or hurting anyone). Then Wiz would reach his limits and lose it.

    Oh, the looks. Pity, "What kind of mother are you" looks, and all the others. You have my sympathy and empathy. Cause the looks HOOVER.

    While easy child may have been out of line, she had probably had all she could take and then some. It didn't help the situation, but it is understandable mostly. At least that is in my opinion.

    I don't know what consequences should be. What would happen if you had difficult child eat in another room while you had the family dinner? Could he be amused with a video or computer game or something? It would not help his behavior, but it would give you a chance for a relaxing/enjoyable family dinner. I know that you want him there as part of the family, but it might be a way to start to have the dinners be pleasant and relaxed. Maybe after a few dinners where he ate and amused himself in another room, then he could join you for dessert, or appetizers. Slowly build up until he can be relatively well mannered at the table.

    I don't know what causes that well of anger that bubbles up in some of our kids. About the age when you say he started being rude and angry with your daughter, Wiz started telling us that all women/girls were "from the devil" and that GOOD men must punish them constantly to "save" them. I FINALLY tracked the source of this down. He did a sleepover at another little boy's house. I didn't have much use for the dad before this, and despised him after.

    Dad woke the boys up at midnight because it was "the witching hour" and showed them a scary movie with witches in it. Not a full-out Halloween style horror movie, but it was enough horror to really stick with Wiz.

    There were various religious overtones in this, about saving the witches and having them "turn to Christ" for punishment and salvation (both occurring in a pit of fire).

    Immediately after this Wiz started ramping up the way he would hurt Jessica because he didn't want her to "become a witch" and the only way to save a witch is to beat the devil/demon out of her and then burn her in a pit of fire.

    To this day I than God that Wiz never got Jessie to the point where he thought he had beaten the "devil" out of her. I have had nightmares off and on for years about what would have happened if we hadn't gotten him help for this.

    Wishing you luck and hoping you know you are not alone.

  5. LittleDudesMom

    LittleDudesMom Well-Known Member Staff Member


    I so sorry that things have been so bad lately.

    I understand the relationship between your mom and difficult child. Sad that she banned him when, at this point, spending quiet time with her down the street would probably be a positive in his life.

    It's tough for us to change our plans or expextations, like omiting his presense from family dinners, but it needs to be done for family peace. For years, when the kids were little, we ate as a family every night. Then difficult child got pickier about his food and gfgier in his attitude. He has his plate seperately and he, and we, were happier and less stresssed.

    Hope you get some answers to this increased anger. Sounds like the adolescent cr*p is settling in.

  6. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    So sorry, Dazed. It seems a lot of our kiddos are struggling right now.

    Ditto to what everyone else said, and adding, would mom be up for visiting difficult child and taking him to grab a milkshake or something? Keeping the ban in place, but giving him some 1:1 with someone who's "safe"? Just a thought.

    And a realy big hug.