16 Year old son is having multiple issues

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by ARJ, Sep 2, 2017.

  1. ARJ

    ARJ New Member

    Hi, I am new to this type of thing. I have never had to search for answers about my children before. I have a daughter who is grown but has never given me any trouble. So with everything going on with my 16 year old son I am completely lost.
    About a month ago my son was starting to not come home at night. His mother and I are divorced and he lives with her but we both live with in a mile of each other. So he is with me in the evenings and weekends etc. During the past month he was staying out all night. Sneaking out of the house after his mom went to bed, multiple times.
    It ended up that after pressing him he had been sneaking out to be with a 30 year old woman. In 1 months time he went from normal teenage complaints and actions to being completely lost. Didn't want to tell us where he was. Why he wasn't coming home etc. She had called him out of school a number of times and convinced him to stay home with her during the day as she doesn't work for some reason.
    This grown "woman" had convinced him that he didn't need his parents and did not need to tell them where he was. She told him she would help him emancipate from us so they would be able to be together and get married.
    After finding all these things out we went to the police. He admitted everything because I feel like he had to get things off his chest. This woman has been arrested and is in a pretty bad spot because of how she manipulated a young teen to completely leave his entire life behind so they could be together.
    Obviously he is very angry at us for getting him to confess but I told him, "if it was something that only involved sex with this woman we could have dealt with it differently but she convinced you to leave your home multiple times in the middle of the night. Not go to school or football practices, sit around the house smoking weed and telling you that she would take care of you and pay for an emancipation".
    He is slowly understanding I think but now he is having issues with going to school. He has quit football and everything because he has it now in his head it's none of those things are important. This "woman" completely screwed his head up for her own sick feelings.
    After everything came out the police informed us this house was a huge party house for teenagers. She was supplying them with weed and pills. There was some very shady things going on there besides the manipulation of my boy. Needless to say I am struggling to get him to start thinking again about his future. It's not easy because he is still not over her.
    We have him in counseling and have full restraining orders against her for the school and him.
    This is a very tough situation for me trying to get him back on track. He is convinced now that he needs to quit school and work because he's old enough now. Even though not one of his friends has those thoughts. So that tells me he is still caught up in her lies and manipulation.
    That's not even taking into account of when she gets out on bail (they put a huge bail on her) she will probably try to contact him and all the work over the past few weeks will start fresh Im afraid.
     
  2. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    Have you drug tested him? Is he using? Often this can cause huge problems and changes in personality very fast. I would insist on him taking at least a home drug test if you have not done this. You can get them at any drug store or walmart type store. Then you will know if you have to cope with that also.

    It is going to take time and patience to get over this. Try some financial education. Let him see how much he can earn on what he can make without a high school diploma. Let him go and get a job. Let him pay his own cell phone bill, part of the home internet bill, etc... After all, when he is doing his job as your child he is going to school, playing football, getting good grades and you pay all those things. When he isn't doing those things, well, aren't those his bills to pay? Especially the car insurance and car maintenance and gas and other so expensive car bills? Add on all his activities, his clothes except for the goodwill thrift store kind that you provide if he is not in school doing well, and gee, that job at McDonalds doesn't look so great, does it? Be sure he is completely aware that you will NOT tolerate for one single second a job that is not one hundred and twenty percent legal.

    You and I both know he cannot make any money or enjoy himself at all if he is pulling his own weight. He won't enjoy that life at all. Pull back all the fun stuff if he insists on being an adult. Let him be an adult. See how much fun it is. Then let him go and take on those tasks gradually the way most teens do.

    Please don't back off on this woman. You completely did the right thing. Be sure your son gets counsellign because she totally messed him up. That is the one thing I would give him an incentive to keep up when you go into the "want to be an adult and work, okay here you go" mode. I would even pay him to go and participate if you have to. Not outrageously, but a bit more than whatever job he can get.

    I am sorry she targetted your son I am glad you got her shut down. If the cops knew she was running a party house with drugs, why were they letting her stay open? I always wonder that.
     
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  3. How did I get here

    How did I get here New Member

    As a former abused women. I can tell you, right now the future is not on his mind. The here and now is what he is thinking.
    He was stripped of his dignity. She has convinced him that he is nothing without her. By adding sex, drugs, and whatever else, she has brainwashed him. I can't image going through that as a teenage boy. Nobody wants to buy into a boy being raped. He's falling into this is what a man should want. Deep down he must not think that way, or he wouldn't have told you.
    I'm not a therapist, I did go into a field that helped other victims. No one wants to feel like a victim either. Try not pushing the future so much at this time. Maybe, try back stepping. Go play ball or something that will make him feel like a kid and protected. Maybe, mom needs to try to do the same (something that they use to do together.)
    Getting counselling was a great step. Is it family counselling too?
    No offense to anyone here, but, I hope this woman rots in hell. Nothing in her life gives her the right to destroy another life.
     
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  4. ARJ

    ARJ New Member




    Thank you so much for your advice. I do need it that's for sure. I'm flying blind here.
    I know this was something I had to do or we could have lost him. But it's still not easy knowing he has to go through all this and that he's suffering. Although he likes to say he's not.
    He's a good kid but he has completely different thoughts in 1-2 months. He doesn't want school, football or anything really.
    The one thing is that in the past few days he has gone out applied for a job and starts next week.
    I had a long talk with him about responsibility as a young adult. Told him he needs to look into the things he has been saying he wants to do. Like quit school and by emancipated so he can live on his own (Things he's never said prior to this). He obvious can't do those things because he's still not old enough legally and they certainly don't emancipate a kid that can't fully support himself. But I'm asking him to research things before he says them. I know this is all coming from anger and hurt though.

    One thing I'm afraid of is when she gets out on bail or whatever she will try contacting him. The town isn't that large, not small but not big either so all the kids are around town a lot. So my fear is that she get ahold of him and try starting this all up again. Even though I have all the right precautions in place legally speaking. And she'd be right back in jail but it's the time between her being let out and us finding out she's contacted him that's scaring me. I've already been telling him he has to take responsibility for his self and if he wants to be a young adult then take on those responsibilities i.e. School, part time job etc. So I feel like I can't force him to be locked in the house unable to go anywhere he's to old for that.
    Thank you again for any advice and support.
     
  5. HMBgal

    HMBgal Active Member

    That woman is a sexual predator, plain and simple. We always think of it being a man, but not always. And she's trying to groom him, normalize her behavior, and it's sexual abuse. I'm a mandated reporter because of my job and we have had hours and hours of training in this. She's sexually abusing him. The age difference is too great, for one thing. It's not it's a college girl, or what could be considered peer-to-peer abuse, which is different.
     
  6. ARJ

    ARJ New Member

    Thank you so much for your advice and your post. I am sorry to hear you were abused. I just can't fathom what goes through an abusers mind and what they think is acceptable and what the ultimate outcome will be.
    He is 16 and I can't protect him when he's at work, school or with friends. That's what bothers me. I have no problem letting him do his "break away" thing as a teen. However at the same time he's just been through trauma and isn't thinking right. So what do I do? Lock him in the house? Have someone following him around? These are the things I don't know. Do I give him space other than getting him to counseling sessions?

    I have seen many different approaches on line. Some that say "if he doesn't follow rules of being home on time etc lock the doors" well that's all well and good if he wasn't in this situation because once she's out and we do that they could split. She will be on an ankle monitor, have curfew and not be a loud within 100yards of anyone under 18 but what if that isn't something I feel she's afraid of? I may be wrong and she gets out and completely cuts ties after having some time to think. But I have to know what to do if he thinks he needs to intitiate contact to tell her he's sorry etc.
    He has been imformed that any contact will be a violation of her release and that she'd go back to jail immediately but he thinks he's slick sometimes and just afraid he might try to get ahold of her.
    He has never stolen from anyone, nor has he physically gotten violent towards people. He is relatively respectfull towards people. He says he agrees with the fact that things were pretty bad. But then comes back the next day saying we lied and got people put in jail when we shouldn't have etc etc. So he goes back and forth. His disrespect comes when he refuses to come home on time or keep us updated on what he's up to. So I can count my blessings as they come I guess. I hear and read of the things teens doing these days and he is certainly I'm trouble and needs help through this but thanks god he isn't . But that's not to say he's not in trouble and needs a lot of help.
    Thanks again for any advice or just letting me vent.
     
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  7. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Sounds like drugs may be involved...beyond pot. That may or may not be his main draw to her.

    My daughter is now 34 and doing well, but she did drugs at your sons age. At sixteen we have some control but, trust me, not so much. They are able to elude our barriers. Unless we lock them in the house 24/7.

    We pulled Daughter out of school and gave her a homeschool cirriculum, stopped her using our car, gave her no allowance and in that day and age cell phones were new and most didnt own one, her included. She literally was just allowed to go to work. And we drove her and picked her up. Problem.l solved, right? No money for drugs and very limited contact with peers.

    She used drugs anyway. She found a way to sell drugs to get money. Of course, she also had a job although nothing extra from us. She must have bought drugs at work.

    They find ways.

    Yet I am not sorry we made it hard for her. In the end, her motivation for quitting was "Drugs are too hard. Not worth it."

    Stand firm is my advice. It may or may not work, but we all have to do what we feel is best. There are no guarantees, but I feel our kids see the light more often if we make it hard for them to do bad things.

    by the way, my daughters earliest drug dealer was a 35 year old neighbor. She used to babysit for his child. We turned him in but he got out of it by saying he was innocent...that my daughter had a crush on him and was angry when he told her no. Such a lie, but there was no proof.
     
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  8. pigless in VA

    pigless in VA Well-Known Member

    Welcome, ARJ.

    I don't really have any advice to offer. I wanted you to know that I understand how you feel. My son has been involved with his married teacher since February. She has been arrested (shocker) for "consensual (?) sex with a minor" (a different boy who was 16). She has lost her job, lost her husband, lost her life. My son continues to see her against my advice.

    I think it is entirely probable that your son will try to see this woman ankle monitor or not. When it comes to female sexual predators, I don't think we parents are capable of thinking the same way that they do. Their mindset is all about themselves and immediate gratification. Rules, societal expectations, and protecting children solely because they are young are foreign concepts to them.

    I'm sorry that you are dealing with this also.
     
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  9. How did I get here

    How did I get here New Member

    Unfortunately, anything any adult tells most teenagers will not get through to them. If there is someone that your son looks up to that will talk to him, that might help.
    When you and his mother divorced, do you remember the empty (what the heck) feeling that you had? For awhile, you probably didn't think straight. He was "groomed" to love this women. He is having those feelings of loss, along with being a teenage boy, and embarrassed.
    I think I have to agree with Some Where Out There, the moods swings when he returns home could be a good indication of drugs. Most people that are using drugs aren't going to get help, until they want to do so. If there is anything that he has a flicker of interest in, encourage him to pursue it (sports, music, etc.).
     
  10. ARJ

    ARJ New Member

    I wanted to update my initial posting.
    It has been 2.5 weeks since this woman completely turned my son's and our lives into termoil. It's been a very tough couple of weeks without barely sleeping and with a stress level I haven't had to deal with in a long time. However, what began as me feeling hopelessness about my son wanting to quit school, be emancipated(which no judge would ever have agreed to) and quiting football (all new feeling imbedded in him from her) has been turning slowly.
    What began as being unable to get him to go to school or skipping multiple classes each day has been slowly turning back into full days and a plan for his education. Obviously mine and most fathers of sons dream of a son receiving a sport scholarship had to be put aside and may never be revisited. But that's ok! What's most important is what he's wanting from his life and to know how important his education is in this day and age.
    So we have come up with alternative plans. This is all very new and it will still be a long road but he seems to be more relaxed with his day to day. We have given him other options to his education. He seems to be very open to being at the tech campus at our local college next year, junior year. He seems to accept that his grades need to be good as well as his attendance in order to attend. So last week was the first week of this school year he actually went to every class and did not skip. To me this is a huge step in his recovery.
    He was and still probably is very, very upset with me for "lying" to him to get him to open up about his relationship with a 30 year old woman. I understand his frustration but I have to stick with my decision and hope he understands later in life that I had no ther choice. And I could not have lived with myself if something more terrible had happen if I hadn't gotten this "woman" away from him.
    As I told him in the beginning, this was beyond sexual exploration. This woman had turned his entire thought process upside down. So there was no way I would let it have continued and she was not letting go so I had to put her in check. Unfortunately she was so twisted that she couldn't see the warning signs of her relationship with him coming to a crashing halt. So, no this was not just a sexual experience. It was total manipulation of a child for her own sick pleasure and ill psychological needs.
    She was released from custody on bond last Thursday. So I'm sure there are many feeling going though his head about her right now. But with our restraining order and her bond restrictions she will be unable to contact him. Or she's back in jail with out a bond for the remainder of her trial.
    He has still a long road ahead of him being he has gotten a life time of hurt at such a young age all caused by this "woman". My hope is she is able to realize what she has done and the pain she has caused not just my son but many others including her young child. If she hasn't learned anything from her time in jail. As well as the massive amount of charges that are still piling up she will never learn and we will do what needs to be done again if she so much as contacts him through a 3rd party. He needs to be rid of her and start rebuilding and salvaging the remaining teen years.
    As I said the plans of him going to tech school rather than fighting for a football scholarship are still very new and might not stick. But with continuing to see if he will accept more therapy to talk things through I am hopeful he will see that he is someone special and has potential to be great. He doesn't have to be a football star.. just my son.
    I was told by his current therapist that we can not force him at his age to talk about this. It is something he needs to want. So I will be offering my support and therapy to him with the hopes he will take it.

    He is such a nice young man when not being manipulated by someone much older than he.
    Thank you for everyone's words and knowledge.