Maybe someone whose had a difficult child incarcerated as a kid, long term, can offer some insight as to if this is manipualtion or normal or whatever. difficult child was doing great yesterday (see WC), then right after I fell asleep last night- early- I woke back up and had a weird feeling because his dog was in my room, meaning he wasn't in bed. I came downstairs and he was in the bathroom so I came to my office. He came out and came to the office and started crying. He said "OMG I'm already scr**ing up". I froze and managed to whisper, asking why he said that. He cried and said he had spent the last few weeks in Department of Juvenile Justice planning to come home and sneak on the computer and get cigs and smoke the first chance he had. But he was clearly shaken as he said he couldn't believe that's what he was trying to do his first night home and especially after all that I had gotten him and done for him and how much he didn't want to go back. He said he needed my help, something must be wrong. We held each other and I let him cry and told him the main thing was that he realized this stuff before it was too late. He said but he would have followed it thru if I hadn't come downstairs and he thanked me for catching him. He told me he loved me and was sorry and that he realized that I was the only person he really had. It broke my heart but I was glad he seemed to see me as someone on his side, not someone he should be trying to take advantage of. We went back upstairs to our respective bedrooms. He came to my door a min later and said there was more he had to tell me- he had tried smoking pot once- while in Department of Juvenile Justice. (Talk about a mother feeling smoke about to come out of her ears! Should I report this?) He swaers it didn't get in there by staff but I have serious doubts about that. Then he cried some more about not wanting to ever go back in and how he messed up because he couldn't even make it one night. But then he confessed again that he'd been planning it the last few weeks in Department of Juvenile Justice. He told me he thought I should put a password on the computer and make sure he had no cash. He asked me to help him. I talked to him some more and told him the main things were no sneaking behind my back, be honest like he was then, no stealing, and by all means- no aggression or violence. He calmed and we went back to our separate rooms for bed. Today I brought it up and asked if he'd gotten back up. He said no- I counted the packs of cigs in the car and none were missing. I asked him about one particular thing he'd said last night and he said I must have dreamt that part. Weird. I told him about what my bro had done as a kid and told him my fears and that's why many times I became so stressed and that he was old enough now to take some responsibility about where these actions could potentially lead him because this was his last chance at home- they would never let him come back- it isn't just a matter of a short incarceration in the future. But, no one expects him to be perfect and we both can work together to dig ourselves out of this hole and get a normal life back if we work together. And that I believe ha can do that- but not to sabatoge me or my efforts. Also, I reminded him that when I'd tried a password on the computer before, he found ways around it. When I tried locking the door, he went thru the door, and a few other. I'm not doing that anymore. He said back then he viewed my efforts as just being mean, now he knows they were efforts to keep him out of trouble because I loved him. Good, because I can't live that way again. He said my trust was very impportant to him. I told him I had to be able to trust him for this to work- if he starts sneaking and stealing, it will not work. He said he got it and he wasn't going to do that. I told him if he sabatoged things this time, the dogs would be gone, I'd be in a homel;ess shelter, and he'd either be in Department of Juvenile Justice or living with my bro, which he doesn't want, but this is all true. I told him I hope he can remind himself of that when he gets tempted and find that it isn''t worth it. I wonder if he's being honest and making a sincere effort or if he's just snowing me from the get-go. We're getting ready to watch a movie. I'd asked him to do a couple of things earlier today while I worked- he did them with no complaint. I'd arranged for him to go by his old middle school to say hello to the principal and his fave teacher there- the principal had ok'd it- but then neither showed up. We were told something came up. difficult child took that for face value. It bugs me that neither was there, but neither called or emailed to cancel. Oh well.