Is he just stupid, or what?

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by muttmeister, Apr 12, 2008.

  1. muttmeister

    muttmeister Well-Known Member

    I haven't posted anywhere except on Watercooler for awhile but I am so upset this morning that I have to vent someplace.:angry-very:

    difficult child#2 lost his driver's license over a year ago: for doing stupid stuff, he was guilty, he deserved to lose his license. In this state, if you lose a certain number of points in a given time and you are underage, you lose your license until you are 21. Then you can reapply. If you don't want to wait, you can take a class and get enough points back to get the license,. So.... my mother paid the $60 for the class a over a year ago. It was held in a town about 150 miles away and difficult child's wife has relatives there so we paid for them to get a motel so they'd be there in the morning and she was to go spend the day with her relatives (she had to drive him as he couldn't). So, instead of going the night before to see where the class was like any normal person would do, he waited till morning, couldn't find it, was late, so wasn't admitted. So all of that money was thrown away.
    A month later, he signed up to take the class again. Stayed in the motel again. Got to class on time but somehow got into the wrong class so instead of saying something, he left at the morning coffee break. More money thrown away. So he gave up. He would be eligible to get his license in a month; he will be 21 before the middle of May.
    Then, a couple of months ago he got pulled over for driving without a license (he acted like he was surprised (more stupidity!). So when he went to court, they told him to take the class and get his license renewed before the next court date or they would fine him $500 and give him a year in jail. So we paid the $60 again, set him up to take the class today, this time at a town only 70 miles away. He was to be there at 8. I'll bet you all know where this is going.:sheepish: He called me at 5 till 8 and said he just woke up; his alarm didn't go off.:angry-very:

    Do they do this stuff on purpose or are they really that stupid?

    I'd be glad to let him sit in jail for a year but he has a family to support and a new baby on the way. It should not be my problem but I am so mad (at him) it might be a good idea for them to lock him up before I kill him. (Not serious but I'll bet you can relate to what I'm saying).

    Do they do these things because they secretly enjoy the drama? Are they too stupid to live in a normal society? Or is the reason they are in trouble all the time because the simply can't function with normal people? I can understand messing up once, but this is the THIRD time. Somebody just shoot me.
  2. Star*

    Star* call 911


    I want you to know first, I am laughing with you, not at you. Second I think it's that they ARE that stupid.

    This is the "thing" that gets me every time with Dude vs. natural consequences. I listen to all the exerts EVERY SINGLE TIME he had gotten into trouble in the past tell me "Let natural consequences bite him in the kiester." So we sat back, shut our mouths, let the law do what it would do and the ones that were left to deal with the fallout EVER SINGLE TIME - were DF and I.

    Someway - someHOW, ever time something has been left to natural consequences we were brought into the scene. We stayed out of it all and then BLAMO - it's like "Okay natural consequences have occurred 1,285 times and this kid does NOT NOT NOT get "IT" - so you the parents MUST have done SOMETHING WRONG WRONG WRONG....and we sit there like idiots going "But we DID what the professionals told us to do." and yet after the fact NO ONE (not a judge, PD, DA) no one wants to really hear our side of it.

    And you would think that 1,285 times would tell a kid - GET WITH THE PROGRAM OR YOU ARE GOING TO JAIL.....but nope. And now - your son will be going to jail because you allowed natural consequences to happen and I guess my question is WHO do the COURTS think REALLY will be helping that girl with a baby and one on the way? But yet - let anything happen to her or those kids and EVERYONE would point the finger at YOU.

    Makes me sick to my stomach that no one understands our kids. I would LOVE to be a fly on the wall in that courtroom that would allow you to be able to VENT to the JUDGE in this case and tell him that you HAVE tried to help, but throw yourself on the mercy of the court because your son is NEVER going to get it, but NEEDS to not be in jail to pay for a family he created because he NEVER GOT THAT either. (despite your grandkids being just cute as a button)

    Hugs - Strength-Support - Ears -Understanding

  3. WhymeMom?

    WhymeMom? No real answers to life..

    Sounds like he thinks rules don't apply to him. Think I would withdraw from this and let the consequences fall......
    In our state they have this class "online" so you don't have to go anywhere and be there on time, just need to read and answer questions at one sitting. Thinking maybe the money you front might be better spent elsewhere or on new baby......
  4. Nomad

    Nomad Guest

    I am working on the answer to the question myself.
    It is baffling, frustrating and heartbreaking.
    I am sorry.
    I agree about checking it out online. I often present opportunities to difficult child and hope for the best. I think this is a good thing to do.
    However, you can lead a horse to water, but you can't make him drink.
  5. muttmeister

    muttmeister Well-Known Member

    It's not available online in this state. I will have him call the place on Monday to see if he can reschedule. I know from experience, rescheduling is not the problem; the problem is that they gave him a deadline and I don't think there is anyway for him to meet it - because of his own stupidity. I don't know if he'd go and tell them what happened and show that he's signed up for another date, they'd give him an extension or not. If I were the judge, I'm not sure I would, although I doubt if they want to spend the money to house, feed, and clothe him for a year for an expired drivers license. Plus paying welfare to his family as they would have no means of support. But I'm not sure they even think of that. In any case, he probably deserves to be locked up. But I'm not sure he'd learn, even from that. It's like trying to teach a pig to dance (it frustrates you and it annoys the pig!).
  6. janebrain

    janebrain New Member

    I loved this! Sorry to get a chuckle at your expense though. Reading your posts made me feel so frustrated and mad--I think I get how you must feel as his mom!

    Let us know what happens,
  7. meowbunny

    meowbunny New Member

    Sigh. It really is a good thing our kids' heads are permanently attached. I have no doubt mine would misplace hers because "it was easier to put it down than walk with that weight." Some of it is the arrogance of youth. Some of it is flat out stupidity. I think a lot of it is a plain lack of common sense and experience.

    I know I would not pay for another class, motel, gas or anything else. He's had his share of help from you. It is time for him to do this entirely on his own. You might suggest he call the court to get a new hearing date. They're usually pretty good about giving one. That way, when he faces the judge at least the class would have been taken (maybe, anyway) rather than going in and saying it is scheduled to be taken.

    I really do understand your frustration and the worries for all of them. Sometimes, though, we're really stuck making them stand on their own two feet.
  8. KTMom91

    KTMom91 Well-Known Member

    Sounds familiar, but on a smaller scale. Of course, Miss KT is younger...and I agree, I think they really are that stupid. And it drives me crazy! I keep trying to deal rationally with someone who isn't rational...I think I'll go with janebrain and teach a pig to dance!
  9. witzend

    witzend Well-Known Member

    I don't know about stupid, but more that they just don't care. They don't see the use of it, the rules seem stupid.

    Sounds like it's time for him to do what he wants about it and deal with the natural consequences. I would be surprised if he actually did a year's jail time. It's more likely that he'd do community service and have to pay fines. Maybe the rules are stupid (not). But the consequences for breaking the rules are real, and he seems more just lazy than bad. I think he'll figure out that it's a hassle to break the rules and get caught.
  10. MyFriendKita

    MyFriendKita Member

    I fully understand your frustration. I go through the same thing with my son (fortunately, though, there aren't any grandkids to get hurt in the fallout...knock on wood). Several months ago, he lost his wallet, then got a ticket for not having his license on him (after insisting to us that you didn't have to have your license in your possession as long as you knew your license number). I had intercepted a credit card issued to him (foolish credit card companies that give cards to teen difficult children are a whole other post), so right before it was time for him to go to court, I gave him the credit card and sent him to pay the ticket. He called and said they didn't accept credit cards, so I told him he could get a PIN and use the card at an ATM to get cash to pay the ticket. The next day, I asked if he paid the ticket, he said yes, I forgot about the whole thing...until I intercepted his credit card bill in the mail. He didn't pay the ticket...he DID buy a new car stereo (this was about the fifth one in the space of less than a year-he has some weird car stereo fetish, he is constantly buying a new one, selling it, and then buying another one). Then he also didn't show up for court, so husband and I were convinced that he (difficult child, that is) was going to be hauled to jail the next time he was stopped.

    That never happened, but he did get a notice in the mail that his license would be suspended if he didn't pay the ticket by a certain date. I go buy a money order (with his money) and give it to him to go pay the ticket. I find the money order in the car the next day. husband is off the next day, so I give him the money order to go pay the ticket. Only he finds out that since difficult child didn't pay the ticket within the allotted time, difficult child has to go downtown to get his license re-instated. husband just happens to be off again the next day and says he will take difficult child downtown; difficult child says he is sick and doesn't want to go. difficult child is sick, but not sick enough to stay home that evening instead of going out with friends. The next day (the last day difficult child can drive before his license is suspended), I tell difficult child he has run out of time. If he wants to keep his license, he has to go downtown that day. He doesn't feel like going!!! I tell him if he doesn't go, I will sell the car-no point in keeping it if he doesn't have a license. He finally does get his license re-instated. But, the sad thing is, we went through this same thing again a few months ago (yes, he once again, after going through all of that, forgot his wallet and got a ticket for not having his license on him). It just so happened it was over the Christmas holiday, so difficult child ended up getting his license suspended because the BMV wasn't open when he tried to go at the last minute. Then he tried to convince us it was okay for him to drive, because, according to him, the police will let you off the first time you're caught driving without a license!!!

    So I guess what I'm trying to say is, I agree...they ARE just that stupid.
  11. everywoman

    everywoman Active Member

    I vote with stupid~
  12. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    Gee. If it makes you feel better tonight I have one too.

  13. Abbey

    Abbey Spork Queen

    Here are my 2 cents worth of thoughts.

    I don't think they are stupid. I think kids are raised in a totally different way than we were raised. I FEARED the wrath of my parents. Whether that was a good thing or not, but I did.

    Kids are raised so entitled today that they don't think rules apply to them. J is exceptionally smart, but has continued to make bad choices because he thinks he is better than any system or rules. He says rules are for ignorant people.

    My parents would have NEVER thought of giving me a cell phone. (They didn't exist then.) In fact, the one phone we had we were limited to 5 minutes of chat per day. I remember getting a good spanking as a teen when I was on the phone when my mother tried calling after she had a car accident and tried calling. Lesson learned...I stayed off the phone.

    We were never just given money. We had to earn it. I washed a lot of walls and baseboards. What money I did earn through a job I turned over to mom. It was part of being a family. You all contribute.

    We were required to respect our grandparents. Once a week I had to ride my bike to visit my grandmother and do chores for her. At the time I hated it, but now I cherish every moment I spent with her.

    I have never, to this day, driven my parent's car. I saved my own money, got my own insurance and paid for my own gas.

    It was not expected that my parents paid for college. I took out my own loan and did it by myself. They didn't take me touring colleges, etc.

    My parents would have NEVER paid for a Starbucks for me. ( I see this every day even for toddlers.) You want Starbucks? You pay.

    I think those things, although tough, make you a stronger and more realistic person. You may think you are God, like J, but in reality you need to be able to conform and fit into the society no matter where you live.

    (stepping off of soap box now)

  14. Star*

    Star* call 911

    Okay - ALL IN -

    Who would rather teach a pig to dance than try to teach a difficult child ONE SIMPLE SINGLE THING??

    I'm all for doing a waltz with the pig.
  15. susiequte

    susiequte New Member

    What I don't understand is when they tell a lie to your face.....and you KNOW it's a lie. You try to confront them with the lie and then they lie even MORE!!! And it just gets so outrageous that you have to laugh at some point!!! (or else you might just beat the **** out of them!!!)
  16. Nomad

    Nomad Guest

    I really liked what Abbey had to say...but I think entitlement is not all things for all people. And yep, the more I think about it, entitlement issues are getting worse and worse as time goes by.

    Our son was a easy child and then had a wild year of depression and entitlement in highschool. A lot of therapy coupled with a lot of tough love changed his tune.
    No cell phone, no extra spending money, etc.
    He got a part time job and earned all the extras and did SIGNIFICANTLY better; including (knock on wood), being on the Dean's List.
    However, I can't help but think of his girlfriend who does receive many extras from her parents AND is very respectful of her parents and also on the Dean's list.

    Our daughter was raised the same as our son, yet does not seem to learn lessons well. Even when privledges are removed, she doesn't seem to "get it." Day to day we weigh just how far we need to go to "hope" to teach her a lesson.

    With our son, withdrawing privleges had a clear cut benefit. With our daughter, not always.

    I guess I'm trying to say that some folks might be more prone to entitlement issues than others. And some difficult child's might have great difficulties picking up "cues" even ones involving great personal danger. Often times I still think it is worth the try, because the entitlement problem is a huge hurdle and if we can help to errode that...that would be a plus. But finding where to draw the line esp. in terms of "tough love" can be confusing...cause sometimes they shoot themselves in the foot in such rapid succession the stakes become very high and rehabiitating an incarcerated difficult child becomes very tough and a dead one becomes impossible.

    One more thing (just thinking out loud here), I do think overall...even the more difficult difficult children would do at least a little better, if society in general wasn't "into" this entitlement "thing." For example, I am THE ONLY person I know, who makes their college-aged child pay for their own cell phone. Rich and poor folks alike. However, making him work and pay for his cell phone was one of the best moves we ever made. It humbled that kid pronto. He learned early if he wants anything good in life, he will have to earn it.
  17. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    I am not sure why some people keep making the mistakes they do. After a while the consequences are (or should be) unavoidable. It really stinks for parents in your situation, doesn't it?
  18. LoneStar14

    LoneStar14 New Member

    I agree with you Star. Who has the music? But we have to keep to trying with the difficult child. After all, the pig will eventually leave us to go on Dancing with the Stars and then we'll be back at square one.
  19. catwoman

    catwoman New Member

    My difficult child always felt that the rules didn't apply to him. He always felt he was smarter than everyone else and therefore deserved special treatment. Rules were "stupid."
  20. witzend

    witzend Well-Known Member

    "Because if I had talked to you honestly about it you would be mad!"

    How many different ways can they be offensive in one sentence? They don't give you a chance to help or offer opinions by talking to you, and they shift the blame from their actions to your "totally unreasonable"ness because you "would have been mad".