Just along for the (wild) ride

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by jewlzfire, Mar 30, 2009.

  1. jewlzfire

    jewlzfire New Member

    I am just the stepparent of a 13 yr old boy who once lived with my husband and I and at that time we were getting him the help he needed...going to classes about ADHD, counseling, medications, etc. Then, his mom took him back. Since then he has stopped taking his medications and been suspended several times.

    At the beginning of the school year he was arrested for making threats to stab and shoot two kids at his school. He was allowed to participate in a "diversion" program and was suspended for a year from school. As far as I know, his mom has done NOTHING as far as the "diversion" program goes. We suspect he hasn't been doing any of the school work he is supposed to do at home and has had NO counseling. I am appalled at this but like I said in my title...I'm just along for the ride.

    I'm so angry about this because no one is doing anything to help him. Very recently he made a threat with a weapon in hand to a kid across the street and was arrested again. He spent 3 weeks in a juvenile detention center and was just released on Friday. When my husband talked to him on the phone he asked him if he had learned anything from this and his response was "yes, to keep my mouth shut" and my husband went on to tell him he needed to stay away from weapons of any kind and he said that sometimes he needs to carry a knife. It was clear he doesn't get it.

    Part of me is angry because I feel like his mom is bordering abuse/neglect by doing nothing. The other part is scared to death that his mom is going to try to send him out to live with us when she can no longer control him. I know I cannot live under the same roof as him and am quite worried about that actually. When I lived with him he scared me....and he was only 10 then. I wanted to keep my door locked at night because I had visions of him trying to harm me or us in our sleep. My husband seems to minimize his sons issues and gets angry at me when I try to help him understand how gravely serious his sons problems are.

    Now that he has gotten in trouble a second time I would hope it would prompt his mom to quickly get him some help but it's totally out of my hands.

    Any comments or suggestions are welcomed!
  2. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    Hello and WElcome!! I think you need to have a long heart to heart talk with your husband and make sure he's aware of how you feel. I would think that the courts would be making sure that the mom is getting the kid some help. If they aren't yet, my guess is that they will, so that might work itself out without you or your husband needing to get involved. He could probably call the courts and express his concern, though.
  3. timer lady

    timer lady Queen of Hearts

    If mum "gives up" & sends poor difficult child back to you & your husband I'd have a contract in writing that you, husband & difficult child sign together.

    It would state your expectations of difficult child (i.e. therapy, school work, friends, etc), his accountability for behaviors, the consequences for said behaviors & such. I'd include something that husband, especially given he's the bio father, would do to help keep difficult child in line & any allowances or rewards for expected behaviors.

    This is all I can think of off the top of my head.

    by the way, sorry didn't welcome you before I started rambling. Glad you found us ~ there is much wisdom & support here.
  4. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Welcome to the board. Sorry you had to be here though.

    Sounds to me like stepson's problems are more than just ADHD. medications or not medications, counseling or none, many kids escalate as teens and for all you know he has started abusing drugs (common in k ids with disorders). The threat with a weapon is frightening. His behavior sounds more like he is at risk to develop Conduct Disorder than just ADHD. Maybe he has a mood disorder too. I wouldn't put this one all on Mom. She will probably have to do something per the court, but that doesn't mean it's going to make any difference. He sounds like he's getting dangerous--maybe an Residential Treatment Center (RTC) would be best if she wants to send him back to live with you. If you were afraid of him at 10, he's probably scarier now. Unfortunately, steps don't have any authority. I suggest a heartfelt talk with hub to see what he'd do if Mom says "Enough." If you talk about it before it happens, you'll be prepared rather than shocked. Good luck to all of you.
  5. jewlzfire

    jewlzfire New Member

    Thanks for your comments. Ok, first off, what is a difficult child and an Residential Treatment Center (RTC)? Sorry, I'm not up with the lingo yet.

    About having that heart to heart talk with my husband. Well, it seems that even after all that has happened he is still a bit in denial of the gravity of this situation. In fact, at one time, he actually blamed me for his son's behavior. Because his son did not have his episodes around him he thought I was somehow provoking him. When I described his "episodes" to a doctor, she prescribed an anti-psychotic drug and well, that was just too much for my husband.

    I do not have a bond with my stepson and so to my husband he thinks I don't care about him. I was the one who started the ball rolling out here to get help and start going to classes led by a doctor to learn how to cope with ADHD. He got in trouble every day at school. He could not control himself at all. He threw furniture at my daughter and my stepdaughter, his sister. When I had him stay in his room he locked me out and we had to remove the door knob permanently so he couldn't lock the door. In one episode, he was stabbing a stuffed animal with a pin rapidly...it was like the kid was checked out and something else had invaded his body. My husband did not witness these episodes.

    By the way, he was diagnosed with ODD (Oppositional Defiance Disorder) as well.

    I'm so angry at both my husband and the mom for being so much in denial of these problems. I just don't get it.

    In the classes me and my husband attended the doctor laid out what would happen to the kids if they did not receive treatment via counseling, medications, at home behavior modification practices, etc. Drugs, incarceration, etc. I have been telling my husband this was coming and now that is has, he's still somewhat in denial of how big a problem this really is for his son.

    Sorry this was so long. I just feel so helpless!