Confused and stumbling parent

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by grnladybug, Mar 27, 2009.

  1. grnladybug

    grnladybug color me green

    I recently posted about my 16 year old son who was recently diagnosed with add/adhd, odd and bi-polar.

    I just got his report card and his grades are awful. I get so confused at what to try to discipline and what not to because it seems like the more I try to discipline the more angry, upset, and depressed he gets.

    He credits his bad grades on the fact that he can't try to make school and counseling and all these changes work at the same time. That it is too much for him. He had decent grades this year until this past quarter. He said he is trying to get the grades up.

    He is in ROTC and liked it at first but is over all the discipline now. He refuses to cut his hair and refuses to wear his uniform (nec to get a good grade - each Tuesday). No amount of my explaining personal responsibility and the fact he only has 2 months left of school make any headway with him. He has proclaimed he will stay in the class and do his work yet no uniform or haircut. End of story!

    I have a meeting with his teachers and the ROTC teachers on Monday. I'm trying to get the kid through this year with some compassion about the recent diagnosis.

    My main feelings are to be compassionate and help him through this but I still react sometimes like what I think to be a "normal parent". Yet he can't stand the 'lectures' and stuff when it comes to what I think he needs to work on. He starts hitting himself and that KILLS me.

    The only things that make him happy are his friends and his Playstation 3. He wants to be a professional skateboarder but isn't as good as he would like to be and blames God for that.

    Half the time I am so flabbergasted and sometimes nothing I say seems to come out right or help.

    I go back in forth from being aggravated to being sympathetic for him.

    Trying to find counseling for him that isn't mainly all about what I need to do different is hard. I think he needs someone who can help him understand his situation and learn how to live with it and deal with it. He will be 17 in 6 months. I don't mind advise and tips but truly I am working on all that. My kid needs to work on things too, with help from someone who understands this better than I do.

    My husband (his step-dad) and my sons dad and lots of other family members think he is just manipulating me and tugging on my heartstrings. That I need to drop the hammer on him, take away his games, ground him and he will come around. I'm scared to tell either one of them about his grades because they will want me to ground him til the end of the year. AM I supposed to? Am I not? I get so freakin' confused. I'm scared my son will loose it if I do that. I grounded him for 1-2 months around Christmas and that's when things really fell apart leading us to where we are now.

    He had a counselor (female) that I just had to cancel visits with cuz I couldn't stand it any more. All her focus is on my behaviors. I need to laugh at him more, I need to explain things better...on and on and on. These are things I am working on already. I myself have been going to a counselor for 2.5 years to work on my own issues involving him and life in general.

    I am now looking for a male counselor for him that specializes in add/odd/bipolar. I'm also planning on finding some support groups. Get in touch with NAMI.

    Sometimes I just feel like it's all on me to fix this....and I just can't fix everything....I try real hard though....


    Sorry I did not respond to all of you who reached out to me on my first post. Trying to keep up with everything. And I lost a friend to breast cancer this week. And all of it just has my heart aching.

    Oh yes, on the medications. He takes lamatcil and abilify. I had asked about nosebleeds and we took him off the abilify. Went to the doctor and restarted the abilify. He started to get headaches and my hubby realized we had been giving him ibuprofin for those which is a blood thinner. We switched to tylenol and no nosebleeds yet. Yeah!
  2. totoro

    totoro Mom? What's a GFG?

    I don't know? LOL
    I know alot about BiPolar (BP) but I am kind of lost when it comes to 16yo young men!
    I would agree somewhat that yes as parents we need to keep changing our techniques. It is hard and it feels like we never get it right.
    But if he really has BiPolar (BP), and it sounds like some issues possibly from moving from Dad's back to you, then he is still looking for stability.

    I hate having to be firm with my 7yo, but it is vital. She needs a strict schedule, she needs consistancy.
    Me having BiPolar (BP) also, I know that this is so important for stability.

    I also know that strict discipline sometimes backfires, one thing our kids need and feel they have to have is control.
    They tend to freak if they feel they are losing control.
    Whether this is mentally, emotionally, physically etc.
    It will cause anger, anxiety, mania...

    We have to learn how to let them know they are indeed in control of their own lives, but we the parents still have *the control*.

    It is a fine line, it is a hard thing to figure out and each family and child is different.

    It is like for us letting K our 7 yo (very immature) get to choose between 2 outfits for school.
    It still gives her control but not too much. It also alleviates too much for her to think about causing confusion or agitation.
    Maybe things do need to taken away and then given back, as he gains back control and learns that he has control over his own choices.
    That you are here to help him and you will help him. But he needs to try and help himself also.
    I have learned that empathy is huge with my Daughter.

    Another thing, most of our kids are VERY smart but emotionally and socially immature.

    These are just a few things I could think of off the top of my head.
    Not having boys or a teen!

    Hang in there, this by no means is your fault, get that out of your head!

    Oh, and you do not need to answer us individually! :)
  3. eekysign

    eekysign New Member

    As as side note to the headaches---have you gotten him evaluated for those? A kid his age shouldn't be on regular doses of OTC painkillers. And if he's not getting it fairly regularly, the effects of an ibuprofen every week or two shouldn't be enough to cause nosebleeds on its own. It's an NSAID, so it can cause blood thinning, but it's nowhere near the effectiveness of, say, aspirin, for that. It's totally possible he's just one of the unlucky super-sensitives to NSAIDs, but either way---how much is he taking OTC pain medications? None of those are really great for your body, long-term.

    Oh, and welcome. ;)
  4. compassion

    compassion Member

    MY difficult child, nearly 16 is in the same place. She is also on the same medications as your son. I am taking her to neurpsych to see what is realsitic. She rally cannot fouc since the manic espides . Some days are better than others. It is not discipline. It is illness and stability as Totoro said. Go to CABF under education brouchre. It has excellent ideas. Comapssion