Today I regained my sense of humor, added a splash of irony and mixed in a teachable

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Farmwife, Jan 16, 2010.

  1. Farmwife

    Farmwife Member

    I'm learning about detaching and tough love today. Who thought it would be so much fun?!?!

    I finally brainstormed a way to get my message out to difficult child about acting his age and treating people with respect. difficult child is a teen boy and eats accordingly. I am an excellent cook, I bake a good portion of our breads and don't use a machine just to give you the idea. difficult child is very food motivated.

    I am also quite tired of being treated like a servant and a nuisance in my own home. Today I got 'payback' and difficult child has be responsible for himself.
    This is what was left out for him to wake up to this morning. husband and I had pancakes.


    I needed pictorial evidence just in case he tries to say I don't feed him. The meals are nutritionally complete. He loves to be the victim. I have taught him to cook, he IS high functioning. I also left out recipes just in case.

    There are two packets of instant oatmeal in one bowl.
    A cup of beans in another
    A cup of rice in another still. (those will cook up to be a lot more and will feed him all day)
    One bowl has onion, celery, bell pepper and radishes.
    There is one apple and two tangerines.
    The baby food jars have pre measure instant milk powder (guess stealing food and the locks we installed finally came into play)
    In the measuring cup what you don't see are some seasonings for the beans. (I'm not cruel after all)

    I'm in my room avoiding more of his tirade. He is in the kitchen getting his beans ready, so far so good.

    The way I see it there are many lessons in all of this, lessons I will impart upon him after he cries uncle. If he doesn't cry uncle that's fine too. That will just mean he is more responsible for himself.

    *Treat Mom like garbage no treats from her kitchen
    *Argue about dishes no need to clean kitchen after Mom, Mom isn't cooking for you. Clean up your own mess or cook in dirty pots.
    *Beans and rice get boring after a week or so, especially when Mom and Dad can afford to go out to eat or can afford yummy stuff. Might be a good time to consider effort in school and grades. Bad grades, no diploma = bad job and no money for nice food. Ie: get used to beans and rice.
    *Cooking is a life skill that may come in handy for a difficult child who chooses to act like a mean person because that choice will lead to an invitation to leave at age 18.

    That should about cover it. Plus, I get a day off.

    by the way, my point chart is still in place but it will be hard for him to earn points for filling the dishwasher if I'm not making big meals. ;)
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2010
  2. Andy

    Andy Active Member

    Well done!
  3. Mattsmom277

    Mattsmom277 Active Member

    Well done! I love it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    My difficult child loves food. Good food. He'll eat junk like any teen, but give him a prime rib dinner, or homemade soup etc any day. Yet, he refuses to cook. Or learn to cook. When asked if he'd like to cook with me to learn some skills, his answer every time is to laugh and to say that if he gets desperate enough for real food when he's on his own, he can read, therefore recipes on the internet will result in cooking no problem. (snicker snicker)

    This is the same teenager who only learned to do laundry a few months back when I flat our refused. Once everything was dirty that he owned, he finally did as I suggested: asked me how to use the machines, measure soap, etc. I have since then refused to a single time, wash any items belonging to him. He's shrunk pricey sweaters, had some problems with dye in new clothes ruining a load or two. But now he asks if he isn't sure, and he knows I won't do it. Sadly, it doesn't work for cooking!!!

    He insists that he'll live on Kraft Macaroni and Cheese, Mr.Noodles (Top Ramen in the USA), cereal, peanut butter sandwiches, bologna, microwaved wieners and burgers on a George Forman grill. Wow. Now there is a fantastic meal plan ;)

    I think its fantastic that you have found a motivation for your son. I have the sneaking feeling that over time, you might see a bit more help around meal time, and a bit more respect. He'll be missing Mama's Cooking!!!

    PS. Whats for dinner? I'm starving!
  4. Farmwife

    Farmwife Member

    I spent a couple days avoiding difficult child. Was just fed up with his edgy attitude. Was trying to prove a point that he can't treat me that way.

    Today the beans and rice made quite a bit of polite conversation. He kept asking me if he should add water or if he should do one thing or something else. He actually enjoyed cooking for himself. husband and I left for a brief outing and he texted me a picture of the food when it was done teasing me and saying I should be jealous.

    Later I was able to point out how much I didn't appreciate the way he treats people and a few other things. For the time being he is calm and was receptive. I just have to stay a bit detached for my own mental health.

    I just don't get difficult child sometimes.

    Last summer he had to do chores to earn his keep. The deal was that if he didn't "work" he would be homeless, just like it would be for an adult. On one particularly rough day I evicted him. That amounted to all his camping gear in the field behind our house. He spent all day in miserable humidity digging himself a latrine and making a privacy wall. I'm talking back breaking labor with a shovel rather than do 5 minutes of dishes without a fit. He was just so proud to get to be responsible for himself. For that week he was meticulous about washing his cookware, brushing his teeth etc.

    Of course on an average day he can't be bothered with any of it. :confused:

    So, the beans and rice went well. I think he is looking forward to more cooking. When he gets tired of it I know he will be thankful for my cooking. When he gets crabby again, and he will get crabby again he can cook for himself.

    I'm diggin' this accidental solution.

    p.s. We live waaaaay out in the country, the latrine wasn't as out of place as it may be in your yard.;)
  5. GoingNorth

    GoingNorth Crazy Cat Lady

    I actually, the only reason I got prep work like that done for me, was that husband was a chef. He used to do all the slicing and dicing for me to cook. I really miss that.

    Actually, I really miss being cooked for like that, LoL
  6. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member


    Of course, my son would have eaten the apple and then gone hungry for the rest of the day ... ;)
  7. CrazyinVA

    CrazyinVA Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I'm glad this worked for you! I gotta say, though, that when I saw the picture, I thought, "what a huge mess that would have been when my difficult child threw it all over the kitchen in a fit of rage" lol .. I probably would have left out prep for just one meal at a time to minimize potential damage ;-) But.. I wish I'd thought of this years ago... because I definitely think you're onto something.