I'm so lost


New Member

I just don't know what to do anymore. I am divorced with two sons, L who is going on 13, and D who is 10. L is my issue.

He has seen every type of professional I could find; therapists, psychiatrists, psychologists, neurologists, neuropsychiatrists. He doesn't fit cleanly into one diagnosis. We are currently working under the diagnosis of mood disorder. He sees a therapist ever other week and the psychiatrist approximately monthly. He is on tripleptal twice a day, clonodine at night and as needed for outbursts.

Things are so much worse lately. He is verbally abusive, constantly cursing and yelling at me. He simply won't follow the simplest of directions. He absolutely refuses to conform to any rules. (And frankly, given his resistance, there aren't many.) No matter what I say, he argues. It could be the simplest thing...the sky is blue, and he will argue and call me an idiot.

L will have outbursts with my ex-husband, too, but not as frequently. My ex's way of handling these outbursts is to drop L back here, saying he cannot tolerate the behavior. Being in my home has now become a punishment for him. In my home there are rules: consistent bedtime, limits surrounding the use of electronics, etc. I make him do homework, go to his appointments, etc. L doesn't like this and as a result, always wants to be with his dad. L is a because student, and doesn't get into any trouble at school. Most of his anger is directed at me, although he does get into it with his brother.

Yesterday things came to a head. I lost it; L was verbally abusive and I just couldn't take it. I yelled at him. He laughed at me. I called the psychologist, who suggested that L move in with his dad since L "obviously hates you." This is breaking my heart.

I don't know what I did to make him hate me so much. Maybe it is just me. I don't know. He is rude, angry, disrespectful. I try to give appropriate consequences (grounding, taking away electronics). He gets even angrier. Nothing seems to alter the behavior. I did ask the psychiatrist about changing his medications, but he doesn't think that will resolve the issue. I am looking for a new therapist, as his current one doesn't seem to be helping. He comes out of sessions even angrier than he goes in, and I'm not getting any practical suggestions. I'm just told to ignore him when he gets in my faces and says "f--- you." I've tried this, although I think that this is just allowing negative behavior. All it does is eat away at me. I've tried positive reinforcement and lots of positive attention, but that hasn't made a dent in the negative behavior. L just wants what he wants and that is it.

The firmer the line I draw, the harder it gets to live with him. And it doesn't seem to change anything. I just don't know what to do now.


Well-Known Member
Was it an early or contentious divorce that he blames you for? Any change in caregivers or abuse in the first three years of his life? These factors can lead to attachment issues.

Maybe living with his dad would give you and your younger son much needed peace. This doesnt mean you did anything wrong, just that you need a break and the child is out of control. Not all kids can be controlled. If they refuse to listen to anything you say and shun rules, you fid your best eith a very difficukt child eho has issues,

Some kids listen better to men.
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New Member
We separated four years ago, divorce was final early last year. It wasn't contentious. My ex and I actually get along pretty well, considering everything. Ex will defend me when he sees L being unreasonable towards me. Ex is very involved in L's life, and lives close by so they see each other often. I don't know if L blames me or not. There were no upheavals in L's early life. I was a stay-at-home mom and was very involved. Pregnancy was extremely problematic -- pre-term labor, lots of hospitalizations. L hit his milestones on time. But he was difficult from very early on.


Well-Known Member
It hurts so much to be on the receiving end of a child's hate and anger.

Maybe time with dad is best for you and younger son. Sometimes I wish I had that option!

You do need a professional that gives you feedback. The ideal situation would be for you and your ex to see a professional that is familiar with your son. And b come a team. Would your son have to change schools if he lived with dad?

Good luck. It is a hard stage to go thru..,



In the trenches with you, only mine is a 14 year old girl. We have lived thru all of that behavior and more. We are 14 weeks into a partial inpatient treatment program. She sees a therapist privately once or twice a week, group therapy 3 times a week and meets with the psychiatrist weekly. We also have family sessions with the therapist every few weeks.

Sister's Keeper

Active Member
The therapist told you that your son hates you? OMG, that is terrible. I can't imagine a therapist that is so unprofessional.

Maybe living with his father is a thought, not because he hates you, but maybe because he will learn that the grass isn't always greener on the other side. Once he resides with dad and dad is forced to set limits he may not be the good guy any more.

I would be looking for different docs. If they aren't willing to even consider a medication adjustment and they are saying things like your son "hates" you I don't think this person is helpful at all.


Roll With It
Your therapist sounds worse than useless, in fact it sounds like the therapist is doing more harm than good. Find a new one.

I urge you to read some of the books we recommend. One is Parenting Teens with Love and Logic by Fay and Cline. Another is What Your Explosive Child is Trying to Tell You by Douglas Riley. The 3rd is How to Talk so Teens Will Listen & Listen so Teens Will Talk by Faber and Mazlish.

The L&L book is a favorite of mine. It uses natural, logical consequences in ways that may seem harsh but really work. I know the book really helped my husband and I work together to help our kids, and it made a HUGE difference. The book by Riley is amazing, truly! If you don't know why your kid keeps exploding, you cannot begin to help. Kids ALWAYS have a reason, and as a rule if a kid isn't doing well, it is because they are UNABLE to do well. This will help you set your child up to succeed, which I think is what every kid needs. The system just isn't set up so that every kid is ABLE to succeed, but the book can really ehlp with that. The 3rd book is one a friend of mine swears by, and it really helped her make a HUGE difference in her child's life. I have not really needed it, but I know many others here who have been hugely helped by it. I think your psychologist could stand to read it also, because clearly your son isn't making any progress if he is coming out of sessions angrier than he went in.

I hope some of this helps.


New Member
Thank you all for your responses. I thought that when the psychiatrist said that L hated me, it was unprofessional at best. He does have an appointment with the psychiatric tonight, and we will keep that. However, I have received a new name from his pediatrician's office and have left that doctor a message. My plan is to switch as soon as possible.

I am dreading the appointment tonight. L will be rude and vile and spew lies. Ugh. But I'm not comfortable canceling until I have another doctor in place.

L spent last night with ex, my youngest was here with me. Youngest was so much more relaxed. I'm happy for him, yet heartbroken that he can't be this way with his brother. Ex did tell L that he would be staying there for a while. Not happy that he had this conversation with L before we had a solid plan in place. L's only concern is that he won't be on his regular bus. He thinks that I will cave in and let him come home, so he isn't worried at all.

I've been an absolute wreck about this. I can barely function. I just don't even want to get out of bed, but I must take care of my youngest and work. I hate this so much. I actually made an appointment with my doctor for this afternoon because I am in such a horrible, dark place.

I will definitely look into the books you recommended, thank you!


Hi, Doesn't sound like the medications are doing anything? People are on the wrong medications for years and then they get on the correct ones and things improve.