difficult child has been trying to contact easy child

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by welcometowitsend, May 9, 2013.

  1. I'm not really sure how to handle this. easy child just turned 14. difficult child is 17 and living on his own for the last 7 months. Well, couch surfing and mooching really, but he hasn't been here.

    He hasn't made much effort to stay in contact with us during that entire time. He will call if he wants or needs something. Did not acknowledge my birthday or Easter but did text easy child on her birthday. Before he went off his medications he would at least be somewhat decent to me and even have lunch with me once in a while (probably because I was paying for medications). After I refused to hand over ADHD medications to him he got mad at me. He was already off his antidepressant before that, I believe. That was mid-March. Since then he refuses to answer my texts and phone calls most of the time and when he does answer he is pretty hostile. He has only gotten in touch once and that was to ask for his birth certificate.

    So, he is pretty hostile towards me, hasn't spoken to husband in months but is now trying to keep in touch with easy child. He has contacted her on FB 3 x in the last week. Coincides with him trying to get Social services (which he didn't qualify for) and asking me for his Birth Certificate.

    The contact has been pretty mundane and superficial but it scares the **** out of me. He has made the effort to contact her 3x but she has only responded once, since then she has ignored him. easy child will be attending the same high school as difficult child next year and I'm trying to get the high school to force him into a work program so he is working 4 days a week and only at school for one day. Part of this is for difficult child so he can graduate (because he rarely goes to class even though he is at the school all day) and part of it is so he is away from the school and not around easy child.

    I have such fear around this.
    1) difficult child and easy child were incredibly close as kids. They fought, yes, but they really loved each other, played well most of the time and easy child was always good to him despite that he loved to torment her - in an ADHD sibling kind of way.
    2) Part of me still wants them to have a great relationship but I do NOT want difficult child to have any negative influence over easy child.
    3) easy child has a good head on her shoulders, is mad at difficult child for what he's done, but still loves him although I'm not sure if she wants a relationship with him right now.
    4) Last year I caught difficult child with incestuous porn on his laptop (teen brother and sister stuff). This scared the daylights out of me as it was clear that he actively searched it out, among all the other possible things he could have looked for. We put a lock on easy child's bedroom door (and ours) but didn't tell her about the porn. I did question her to make sure nothing had happened but didn't tell her why in case it was just a stupid teenage boy thing. He had stolen from easy child and us so the locks made sense for that reason.
    5) To my knowledge difficult child smokes and drinks.

    I told easy child that I was concerned about the contact difficult child had made with her and that I didn't want him to be a negative influence on her and suck her in to his way of thinking. I also told her that I know she's a smart girl and makes good choices and I certainly don't put her in the same light as difficult child.

    I'm so scared that difficult child's lifestyle of carefree partying and living off the kindness of others will look good to easy child on those days where things are tough. She has quite a few Learning Disability (LD)'s and school can be a struggle for her.

    I just don't know why difficult child is contacting her. He made no effort when he was out of the house last year for 2 months, basically ignored her while he put us through hell last summer and fall and then made no contact with her from November until last week - with the exception of a text on her birthday.

    It almost seems like he's trying to hurt me through her now. If he can turn her against me that would be the ultimate betrayal of me and proof to him that I'm a horrible parent.

    I just don't know what to do. I check easy child's facebook and I randomly check her phone. I don't want to put easy child in the middle of what's happening between difficult child and us but I also don't feel like I should allow this relationship to go unmonitored. She hates talking about him because it is upsetting and I don't blame her. So much of the last two years has revolved around him and dealing with his behaviour that we are all sick of it.
  2. nerfherder

    nerfherder Active Member

    Can you set up next year's IEP (or the equivalent for Canada's school system) and express that very thing? You may not be able to in difficult child's schooling if he refuses to cooperate - I don't know what legal rights he has as far as a parent's wishes in education at that age - but if the school staff is on top of this best they can be, and it is written into her education plan, this may be a help to reinforce your (and her) wishes. She may not want to have contact either, assuming she doesn't but if there's peer pressure to force it on her (he may be "cute" or "cool" because of who he is and/or what he does) it gives her an out of blaming authority in moments where she can't come right out and say "He's a dork and I don't wanna."
  3. Calamity Jane

    Calamity Jane Well-Known Member

    I don't blame you for wanting to have an abundance of caution when it comes to easy child and difficult child's contact. If he won't take medications or cooperate and he was definitely found with incestuous porn, then I'd do my level best to intercede. It doesn't sound like she's all too interested in contacting him, either. You never know, because of her Learning Disability (LD)'s, difficult child may think he can exploit her in some way, I don't know.
    If easy child isn't already in some kind of therapy, now may be a good time to start. Perhaps you could meet with the therapist first, tell the therapist what you know about difficult child's background, the porn, the sudden contact, etc., and advise the therapist that you didn't mention that stuff to easy child. Perhaps the therapist might want you to broach the subject with easy child.
    In the meantime, I'd keep a close eye on FB, etc., and PCs phone records, too, if you can access them.
  4. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Are you sure there isn't another HS that easy child could go to? Another GOOD one of course (she shouldn't be the one punished)...
    Schools tend to NOT get involved in "family problems"...
  5. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    WTW, I agree with CJ, you have every right to be concerned and a therapist may be able to support easy child and at the same time give you some advice on how to approach this. Sending peaceful thoughts your way...................
  6. IC - I wish I could send her to another school. The probably is it would be hurting her. The Special Education program that she is in looks like an amazing program and they only take 8 kids a year. Even if it's offered at another school that program selection was done in January so she would be out of luck there (8 kids in a class with 2 teachers for 4 core subjects in grades 9 and 10). All her friends will be going to this school also. And they are the Arts school in our region and easy child was accepted into their dance program - she can't get that at any other school, unfortunately.

    I spoke to the VP and difficult child's guidance counsellor today. It looks like he will probably get 2 credits - drama and cooking class. I have been told there is no way for him to recover his math and english credits at this point. The guidance counsellor is going to pull him in this week (if he can find him in the halls or in drama class) and get him to change his schedule for next year. He'll have to retake his math and english and for some strange reason he thought it was a good idea to sign up for Chemistry. Huh? So the guidance counsellor is going to try and push him in to some easier, more sensible subjects. Not that difficult child couldn't do chemistry because he is super smart, he just won't put in the effort that would be required.

    On a positive note for difficult child - apparently he is well liked by staff and teachers because he is a nice kid, polite and smart. Doesn't give them a hard time - just tells them what they want to hear and then does as he pleases.

    I'm going to call the guidance counsellor back and let him know that difficult child intends to do an extra year of high school which may be why he's skipping his classes. What difficult child doesn't understand is that they'll kick him out before he gets the chance to do that if his attendance stays like it is. The guidance counsellor needs to make sure he understands that.

    Both the guidance counsellor and the VP think it is a good idea to consider pushing him into the work program. difficult child would have to get a job for 4 days a week and then go to school for one day. He would be able to pick up more credits and graduate earlier and he would be away from easy child.

    I expressed my concerns about easy child and while, you're right, they're not going to get involved in the family matters they both understood where I was coming from. Nerf - I think if he started bothering easy child at school then she could go to the office and have them let difficult child know that he was to leave her alone. That might help.

    CJ and RE - I will look in to finding a counsellor for easy child and also talk to husband about it and see how he feels. She is a pretty sensible kid but I am worried that she might decide she really misses her brother and wants that old relationship back where they played and had fun together. That would mean she might start hanging out with him and his friends and that their thinking might rub off on her. That's scary. Not to mention I have the concerns about the porn - but unless she ends up in a situation outside of school with him I don't think I really need to worry about that.