Frustrated beyond belief with my teenage son

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by jdilley, Oct 18, 2010.

  1. jdilley

    jdilley Guest

    First and foremost, I love my son, but I'm at the breaking point with him. My 16-year-old son has gone from being kind, amiable, and a genuinely good young man to openly defiant, lazy, and demanding. Our biggest obstacle right now seems to be his 16-year-old girlfriend. She has him wrapped around her finger. School, family, and his behavior have all gone down the tubes. She places constant demands on his time, and no matter how many times we talk about getting priorities straight, he just doesn't seem to get it. Today I lost it and said some pretty upsetting things about her (although, I probably shouldn't have), but I can't take her constant control over him anymore. I told him she was bad for him, and doesn't seem to respect that he has his own responsibilities and obligations. He has so much potential, but when he's around her, it seems to fall by the wayside. Honestly, I'm sick of it, and tired of the whole situtation. Any parents who can help would be so greatly appreciated. I simply don't know what to do anymore. :sad-very:
  2. ForeverSpring

    ForeverSpring Well-Known Member

    Hi and welcome to the board.
    I don't know if I can help, but I've raised three teens to adulthood and have two teens (one 17 and one 14).
    The first thing I would worry about with a drastic change in any teenager is drug use. Even a kid who is smitten with a member of the opposite sex usually doesn't change drastically unless more is going on than just their relationship. While I find it perfectly normal for him to want to be with her rather than his family (what teen likes to be with his family????) I do think you need to delve more into his changes. It isn't just her. I would first and foremost check his room and anything else (cell phone?) for any inkling of drug use, which is probably the most common reason for a nice teenager to change very quickly. And often a first honey and drug use goes together.

    Get back to us and others will come along with their ideas. This is the first thing I thought of. OH ONE MORE THING! Don't talk bad about girlfriend. That will make him love her all the more. In fact, he'll get bored more quickly if you act nice to her, even if it kills you. As it is right now, you set up a battle...if he leaves her, he has to admit you were right. I'd apologize about fighting about her and let him lose interest on his own. He's only 16. He will.
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2010
  3. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    My 16yo difficult child is being a PITA right now too. He doesn't have a girlfriend, but we are getting similar attitude, laziness, back talk, defiance, etc. It is worst when his stimulant medication wears off in the evening.

    If I were in your shoes, and I haven't been there yet, but I think I'd severely restrict the extracurricular activities, including time with the girlfriend until a significant change was made in behavior. The old "do to get" motto. You do X (changes in behavior over specified period of time), you get Y reinstated. He won't like it, but you are still the adult and it is your home and your rules. I've told my difficult child that while I love him, he's welcome to find another place to live if he doesn't like my rules, and that usually shuts him up.
  4. PatriotsGirl

    PatriotsGirl Guest

    Agreed - invite the girlfriend over for dinner! Be super nice to her and constantly talk about how great she is. Your son will lose interest real quick!! LOL Worked every time for us when we hated one of difficult child's love interests. :)
  5. graceupongrace

    graceupongrace New Member

    Hi, jdilley, and welcome.

    I feel your pain, as my difficult child is that age! MidwestMom makes a great point about drug use, especially if the change is sudden. It's worth pursuing. Laziness can be a symptom of marijuana use -- pot is a huge demotivator.

    I suggest that you focus on his behavior and not on the girlfriend. Anytime you criticize friends or girlfriends, kids feel they have to defend them, and you immediately become the bad guy. However, it's perfectly reasonable to limit social activity based on his behavior, i.e., if he doesn't treat his family with respect, he doesn't get to hang out with friends (or girlfriends).

    As others here will tell you, glad you found us, but sorry you had to.