About to give up...

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by CondyC, Feb 21, 2017.

  1. CondyC

    CondyC New Member

    I am the step-mother of a 13 year old boy. I have been home educating him for the last 4 years due to his unwillingness to comply with the rules of the school and not doing his work. They classed him as unteachable because at grade 4 he could not read, write or do basic maths. In the time that I have been home educating him, EVERYTHING is a fight. He should be in grade 9 this year but I have him listed as Grade 7. He is reading at an above adult level, but every other subject he just simply doesn't want to do the work. I can't get him to do his schoolwork without sitting on him.

    Now at age 11 he was exposed to porn by a 16 year old neighbor, and then 8 months later an adult woman gave him a stack of porn magazines and was grooming him for sexual behavior. He is now almost 14 and is addicted to porn. We have taken his easy child, Tablet, and Phone away from him, yet he continues to steal them to access the material. We have even gone so far as to remove access of the devices from our home network.

    He was brought home on Saturday by the police, he had not come home Saturday night and we reported him as missing. Not even two days later he stole the cellphone from my bedroom and was not only watching porn again, but had registered for Adult Dating and Sexting sites.

    He constantly steals from me and my husband. He is already drinking alcohol with his friends. And we just do not know what to do. Supposedly he is on the Asperger's spectrum, yet many of his behaviors are not "typical" asperger's behaviors. Yes I know all kids are different but he falls way off the chart. His biological mother died when he was 6 and he was happy. He was happy because he would get to live with me and his father. His mother was an alcoholic and I wonder if he may have far more issues than we know. Like Fetal Alcohol Effects (FAE), Attachment disorder or any number of other issues.

    We are going to see yet another councilor thanks to the police involvement. But I am at my wits ends, and if something doesn't happen soon I want to know if anyone knows of options on removing a 14 year old from the home. What rights do we as parents have to defend ourselves from children who may do us harm?

    By the way while he is currently non-violent, he has googled how to kill your parents. So the thoughts are there.
  2. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Hi. This is so not your fault.

    As an adoptive mom who deliberately adopted special needs children, i schooled myself on both fetal alcohol syndrome and attachment disorder before jumping in. We adopted one boy who was positive for crack at birth so you know his birthmpther did not say "sorry, I cant drink because I'm pregnant." He is fortunate. He is only mildly autistic, but your boy probably did not dodge the Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS) or Fetal Alcohol Effects (FAE) bullet.

    I read every book on Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS) that was out at the time though. Am I an expert? Nope. But Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS) is a real possibility and a counselor is not educated enough to diagnose it either. I would see a neurologist or neuro psychologist. Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS) or its silent but serious cousin, Fetal Alcohol Effects (FAE), is not helped by talking to a counselor. Alcohol can cause brain damage. The brain damage causes puzzling behavior. Memory can be impaired. There is usually a lack of understanding of right from wrong. Its not the persons fault. They lack the ability to understand right from wrong. I took my son to a special clinic in Chicago that pioneers treatment for alcohol spectrum disorders, but they tested him in detail and told us he was not impaired by birthmothets alcohol although the autism was likely from the drugs.

    I also know about attachment disorder and those people dont really learn to make normal attachments and also tend to lie, steal and act out. This kid has been gobsmacked by birthmother. Its too bad she ever had custody.

    Instead of looking for behavioral cures, with dont work with either disorder, take him to a top neurologist or neuro psychologist for diagnostics. Once you know, then you can get the right help for him and you. If he is best off living out of home, which is possible, you can get help for that too once he is diagnosed.

    You cant drink and drug during pregnancy and not affect your developing fetuses tender brain. My sons birthmother had lost custody of four other kids before my son, all different fathers and all drug/alcohol exposed.

    They are at higher risk to abuse substances than the average population. This stepson of yours makes me very sad. Like he was set up before he was born. Still, he is unsafe.

    Lock your bedroom door at night and all sharp belongings such as knives and scissors. Use plastic. Lock up or get rid of fire arms. Put an alarm pn his bedroom door so ypu jear if he leaves his room at night and are aware, even though it will wake you.

    Consider foster care. Get him doagnosed ASAP and then you can find alternative long term living arrangements.
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2017
  3. Crayola13

    Crayola13 Active Member

    If you want him out of the house, you could send him to a military school. I only know of two students in our school whose parents chose that option. I haven't heard how the kids are doing or if they are being helped. I haven't seen any data on how effective military schools are. There are boarding schools for children with behavioral problems.

    It's not that your stepson is unreachable. His teachers didn't have the skills to teach him. Those children have to be taught differently, and even some Special Education teachers don't have the skills to work with these types of students.

    It may not help, but if you haven't done so already, you could educate him about the poon industry. For example, a lot of those women are paid in the form of drugs. Some are forced to do it. Hustler and all those sites exploit addictions. Is he aware of that?
  4. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Military sshool will not accept or help a child with this boys issues. He needs to be supervised, get help and will not be able to succeed in military school. Residential treatment is more appropriate for a child with his challenges. I respectfully disagree with even considering it.

    He wouldnt last three days and it wouldnt be his fault.
  5. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    There actually is a lot of wisdom in what SWOT says. I think this boy needs intensive testing by someone who really knows what they are doing. I would go to either a top neuropsychologist or to a developmental pediatric practice. I would offer the kid whatever bribe was legal and needed to get him to comply with the testing, meaning whatever he wanted that was legal for a child of his age to have (aka not porn) because it will be 10+hours of testing to figure out what is going on. I actually think a developmental pediatrician might be your best first line on this. This is usually who they send autistic and fetal alcohol syndrome cases to in my state because there are only 1 or 2 neuropsychs in our state and one will only do testing on a handful of the cases that he sees. Most he feels he can diagnose in 1 or 2 10 minute sessions even though he is giving out diagnostic labels that take intensive tests to find and figure out. This has come out in many parenting groups that I have been to - parents loathe the guy and I agree, we saw him and he was absolutely awful but other doctors think he is just amazing, so they send people to him first. So pay attention to other parents in your area and to reviews online if you see them.

    I can tell you how I found help for my son. He was violent with us and we were low income - my husband was a graduate student and I HAD to be a stay at home mom because one or the other of my sons was always having to stay home from school. My youngest was dealing with sensory integration disorder and when he got overstimulated he would shake and shut down into a sort of catatonic state that scared people, so he could only cope with attending school maybe 3 days a week. Not the same 3 days each week of course, because if some kid wore body spray or cologne to school, that set off his asthma as well as his sensory issues, and you get the point. So we couldn't pay for a placement when my oldest lost it and tried to kill his sister for the second time. The first time was 2 years before and got him 3 months in a psychiatric hospital. I was done with the 2nd time. He was going to go through me to get to her, and we were not going to put the other 2 kids through that. I was NOT going to mess up 2 kids to keep one kid in the house. It simply didn't make sense. I had to press charges to get him out of the house for the night and the cops tried to tell me I didn't have the legal right to do that. It got ugly. I spent the next day on the phone.

    I got a notebook. I started with our pastor. I told him about the most recent incident and asked if he knew of any residential programs for troubled boys. He did not. I asked if he knew of anyone who might. He gave me 2 numbers. I called each of those numbers. I told each of those people who I was, who gave me their number, a brief rundown of our story (I cried to some of the people I talked to, because it was so hard to talk about) and I asked if they knew of any programs for troubled boys or anyone who might. I filled an entire one subject notebook but I ended up, after a couple of days and over a hundred calls, finding many unsuitable programs and one that sounded amazingly perfect. That had funding AND a bed. We did not end up sending my son there, but it was close. We sent him to my father, who had just retired from teaching and wanted a chance to turn my son around. We got lucky in that my dad is very similar to my son and managed to turn him around somehow, with a lot of civilizing influence from my mother. (And I got a BIG apology from my parents for them not believing what I told them about my son - and I told them very little because they didn't believe the little I told them! This apology went a LONG way to saving my relationship with my mother at the time.)

    Another resource you may want to contact is a local school resource officer. This is a cop who is stationed at one of your local schools. Often they have a list of programs for troubled kids/families. I once got a list from an officer at our junior high. My son's therapist was astounded. She is very well connected in our community and hadn't heard of 1/3 of the programs. She was ecstatic when I let her have a copy of the list because those resources can be hard to find. It never hurts to ask, and MANY cops are happy to help find ways to keep kids out of trouble. Especially to help parents who are working hard to help their kids, parents who are doing all they can.

    One thing that will truly help is to write a Parent Report. This is a report using an outline that moms who were here long before I was came up with. It tells ALLLLLLL about your child, good and bad. I make sure to include a photo at the beginning of each section because it keeps the reader's mind on the child - doctors see so many kids it is easy to forget who they are reading about. Photos tend to stay in memory for many people. If you follow the link in my signature, it will take you to the description and outline for the Parent Report. I honestly think the PR was the most powerful tool other than my instincts for helping my son.

    Just to let you know, and give you hope, my son was an INCREDIBLY violent person at 14. He regularly found and hid knives. We knew every knife dealer in town and they would not sell to my son because they knew us, but my son tried. My son has Aspergers, ODD, ADHD, severe intractable depression, and kept trying to kill me so he could kill his little sister. No clue why he wanted to kill her. Today he cannot tell you why he fixated on that except that she came second and was supposed to be a T Rex and wasn't. Yeah. Makes no sense, but once she started crawling he was NOT happy to have her. Until then he adored her. He made 2 very serious attempts to kill his little sister that we were aware of, and many that we only learned of much much later.

    Today my oldest son is 25. He is still on medication, by his own choice. He works full time. He has a wonderful relationship with his little brother AND his little sister. He works very hard to be there any time we ask him to be, and he feels truly TERRIBLE about the things he did as a teen. WE understand he was a child and have forgiven him, even my daughter has long since forgiven him, but he has work to do there. He is truly amazing with animals and has an almost scary rapport with them. I have seen him charm squirrels out of the trees. He almost got in big trouble in London's airport because a drug sniffing dog was VERY friendly with him - it was new and wanted to be loved on by him in the worst way. ALL animals respond to him that way.

    There can be hope. I do think you need to be careful, but I also think you need to figure out what is going on. Both Fetal Alcohol (Effects or Syndrome) and Attachment Disorders are incredibly specialized and need specialized diagnosis and care. Sadly it is possible to have both, and that would be the absolute worst. Get the testing and then figure out what you can do to help. If you feel he is going to harm you, get away, call 911, and do what you have to in order to be safe. No matter what.
  6. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    Each of these incidents is a crime. These were sexual predators. The exposure to porn by a 16 year old of an 11 year old is child abuse. Ditto the woman.

    I do not think it is too late to report these crimes to the police if this has not been done. As a victim of crime your stepson will be eligible for extended psychotherapy which will be free. At least a year. This is sometimes referred to as "victim witness" benefits. You would apply at the District Attorney's Office. But you need a police report first.

    You must take seriously the googling of how to kill parents but there is still responsibility to get your stepson the help he critically needs. I would seriously consider residential treatment for sexually abused, troubled youth which should be covered by insurance. A referral can be made easily by a child psychiatrist.

    This child has had repeated serious trauma, beginning with the death of his mother, compounded by sexual trauma. It is quite common for boys to manifest their victimization and depression by aggression and by hyper-sexualized behavior. This is typical.

    A regional Children's Hospital would be your best bet for neuropsychological/ developmental testing; ask for the Child Development Department, where there should be a team consisting of social workers, neuropsychologists, child psychiatrist. You will be able to, I believe, get a referral from your pediatrician.

    I would ask for an immediate emergency IEP at school. School would be responsible for paying all or part of residential treatment if he needs this. But first he needs special education status.

    This child has been traumatized, is desperate and depressed. He needs protection and he needs immediate help.

    My heart breaks for him, and for you.

    I am so sorry. I hope you keep posting. Take care.
  7. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    If indeed he is alcohol affected, that is irreversible brain damage...and this is a very real possibility. A mother only has to drink a little during pregnancy to destroy her babies brain. It is the #1 reason for a low IQ in our country (although not all have low IQs).

    If indeed he has this, and you must find out, the psychological issues become secondary to keeping your other family safe from him and him safe from himself. It then becomes brain damage with psychological issues.

    These kids can not reason due to the alcohol in utero and brain harm from it. Please first find put if he has this. Sometimes they are small for their ages with odd facial features (Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS)) and sometimes they look completely normal but have the same behaviors and brain damage as one with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS) only it is called Fetal Alcohol Effects (FAE). There is little differrence other than how they look.

    For his sake you need to know if he has brain impairment to see if he needs snd may always need strict supervision to keep him out of trouble. They truly do not understand right from wrong and forget even why they are in jail once they eventually end there. They reoffend, not understsnding what they did.

    Take him to a neurologist or neuro psychologist. This is a brain issue. Susie is right too, as always. She is so smart :) Check reputation. Find out who in your community is the best in diagnosing fetal alcohol spectrum. If ypu find out yje best place to go is another type of professional in your community, choose the best person. All communities are different.

    Then move on to an attachment disorder specialist if he doesnt have fetal alcohol spectrum, usually a psychologist with an interest in attachment disorder...many dont know about it. Again, ask around.

    Both disorders are serious. Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS)/Fetal Alcohol Effects (FAE) is incurable but there are ways to keep them safe and you safe. If he is googling how to kill you, you must protect yourself. Fast. Soon.

    Attachment disorder is a hard nut to crack but can sometimes be helped. Or not. There is no consensus yet on how to treat it.

    On top of that, he also did have trauma.

    Ive seen kids like this in foster care and adoption. It is not for the faint of heart but you sound strong, informed and smart.

    You are a champion. He is lucky. Your husband is lucky. I know from your post that you understand what his real issues may be. Kudos to you!! You seem very loving and...again smart.
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2017