difficult child 1 is managing to push my buttons in a big way lately. He is lying about homework and for whatever reason is not getting it all done. Tells me it's finished when it's not, and then I find him playing video games. He fell behind in his computer class and despite the teacher telling him he could come in after school to catch up on work, and me urging him to do this since he had done it last quarter, he insisted to me that this wasn't being allowed this quarter. So he's getting a "F" in the class. Brings home an assignment, can't find the info he needs, so he blows off the assignment instead of asking for help or trying to find some other way to solve the problem (and I am ALWAYS available to help). SO as a consequence, I yanked his video and computer game privileges as well as his cell phone. Then, one day last week when I was waiting for him to arrive at his pickup location, I see him turn the corner instead and head to the convenience store, but he's running. I think maybe he has to use the bathroom, so I drive over there. Nope. He's there to buy himself a snack. And guess what he decides to leave sitting on the sidewalk outside the store? His BRAND NEW VIOLIN that I had JUST bought him to replace the one he says was stolen from school last month!!!!!!!!!!! AAAARRRRGGGGG!!!!! So his punishment for taking off to the convenience store without permission and for being careless with his new instrument was to miss the quarterly dance at school which was this past Friday. Then on Friday, when I picked him up he somehow had gotten his hands on his phone again! So I confiscated it again. Then TODAY he went to my car and took it out again! And I just learned this evening that he blew off a 50 point essay last week in Language Arts so the solid "B" he was getting before is now an "F". WHAT IS IT WITH THIS KID?! Is he stupid? Does he think I'm stupid? AM I STUPID? And tonight I got home from Christmas shopping to find him playing a game on the computer (I have it password locked, so husband must have logged him on because he also had an assignment sitting on the desk, so it looked like he convinced husband to log him on so he could do the work). I can't help but scream at him when he pulls stunts like this. I told him very explicitly what the rules are: Grades below a "C" mean NO VIDEO OR COMPUTER GAMES OR PHONE. PERIOD. Then I emailed the same rules to husband (since things tend to stick with him better if he reads them). Then I told difficult child 1 I was SUPREMELY DISAPPOINTED and ANGRY with him for continuing to DISOBEY me. I'm feeling very bah-humbuggish about this kid right now.