Not sure where to turn

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by marksae, Apr 27, 2011.

  1. marksae

    marksae New Member

    Hi. I am also new to this site. I have a 16 1/2 boy year old that I have had a complicated life with for 14 years. I am tired of the stealing, laying, etc. He is failling school and ditching now. He basically does what he wants and seems not to have any consequences for his actions. He is on medications. He is on respiradol and wellbutrin. He has the appearance a sweet kid so nobody ever believes he could do that. I have been in the court system where I had a judge tell me he is a "good" kid. Yet he does not have to live with him. I have two younger children I also have to raise. My 11 year old son gets angry because the 16 year causes heart ache in the family. I also have a 4 year old daughter who has a heart condition. When i try to figure out ways to work with the 16 year old. I am the bad guy.
    The sad thing is the 16 year old has potential to great things and he keeps choosing the wrong things. I have tried charts, I tried talking to the school but they have given up on him. I just don't know what to do with him. I am to the point that I wish we were in pioneer days and I would give him a horse and he can go be a man.
  2. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Hi - welcome.

    Usually, others will have more to add if there is more detail... Diagnoses? undiagnosed on-going suspicions? behaviors? How well has he done in school - early grades? mid-grades? lately? etc.

    Hang in there!
  3. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    in my opinion only...16 1/2 is old to try using charts. I think taking away driver's licenses, cell phones, and other electronics MAY work better. And, sadly, with some kids that age, never works.

    I had a daughter that did drugs so I have to ask the question...are there drugs involved? If you know he smokes pot, there is an excellent chance he does even more drugs. Been there/done that. If so, at his age, I'm not sure what your options are or if you can force him into rehab or, if he is not on drugs, even force him into therapy. Are you certain he is taking his medication?

    Is his father living in the house? Does he respond better to him?
  4. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    That is not an easy age. Teen years are tough.

    As far as school.......let him take the consequences they dish out and let it go. Time he feel the responsibility. In my opinion by the time their teens the school wars are just not worth it anymore. I backed off my kids when they entered high school. It was totally up to them. All the school wars got me was world war III at home anyway. Discovered much to my surprise they did no worse, and in many respects did much better. Home time settled down some and tension eased because that issue alone was a major part of the battles. School was less than thrilled with me, but like I told's your job, my job is to parent. Let me focus on other areas.

    Mine? I pinpointed something that meant a lot to them and that was my main target as a consequence for breaking the rules. easy child it was hanging with friends/sports. Nichole it was hanging with her friends. Travis was the computer and playstation. Hard to use a computer that doesn't have a keyboard or a mouse. Likewise hard to play a gaming system that doesn't have controllers. Often with difficult children we have to get downright creative. Much of the time it feels like we're making no progress.......but now that mine are grown, you'll find later down the road they hear and remember more than you'd ever dream. lol

    You have your hands full. Easy for someone outside the situation to pass judgment. Like you said, they're not living with it. I don't know what diagnosis you're dealing with.....but you've certainly landed in the best possible place. Welcome to the board. :D:hugs:
  5. PatriotsGirl

    PatriotsGirl Guest

    Welcome! So sorry you had to find us, but you will be so glad you did. There are the most AMAZING women on this board!!

    Mine is 17 1/2 and living outside of our home. We never found anything that worked. Nothing. We had an alarm system on our house! She found a way out. She was thrown out of school not once, but twice, for selling drugs. Dropped out of school (did get her GED thankfully). I found a meth pipe. I was done. We offered her rehab or the road. She chose the road.

    So, obviously I have no advice. Just sympathetic (((hugs)))...
  6. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Sometimes, where you go depends on where you've come from...

    Ours is 14.5 and a mess - but SCHOOL made him that way, so we still fight the school battles. When the only way you can get the teacher to believe you is to tell lies - constantly - then what you learn at school is to lie - figure out what the teacher wants to hear. After 9+ years of that... sure, things are a mess. But school still doesn't believe that this happens - daily. And we just found a medical specialist that actually has some clue about the complexity, and the interplay of different issues (working against each other), and the need for someone other than parents to stand up to the school.

    We started getting real answers about where he is coming from, about 1.5 years ago. That's not his fault, and not ours. Between the schools and the medical systems... he wasn't "bad enough" to spend resources on, and had no one really good defining set of symptoms that would trigger a "hot button" diagnosis. (around here, anything in the autism spectrum has way more support than any other developmental disorder, pervasive or otherwise)

    Just in case there's any overlap... Has school always been a problem? or did it start at some other point? If its always been a problem since before the end of Grade 3, I'd be looking for hidden physical or neurological disabilities and missed learning disabilities. Hearing. Vision. Coordination. Dyslexia. Dysgraphia. Handwriting problems. Executive function issues. Is he good at ANYTHING in school? Phys Ed, music, art... or math... or social... each uses different skills. Some can be very good at Phys Ed, and horrible at handwriting - but because the kid is so coordinated on the playing field, teachers fail to see that there is actually a disability at play with the writing, and it gets treated (from a very young age) as attitude. In our experience, if attitude starts with puberty, then it might in fact be attitude. But attitude from a 6 year old? More likely, the adults on all fronts are missing something. (NOT usually the parents... they KNOW something is up, but can't get school or medical support to even agree that there IS a problem)

    But at 16.5... that's worse than 14.5.

    <sigh> It could be us in a couple of years, though, if all of this doesn't work.
  7. exhausted

    exhausted Active Member

    Welcome Marksae. I too have a 16 1/2 year old-but female. We have been through hell as well-mostly the last few years. Mine got out of an 18 month stay in an Residential Treatment Center (RTC), which cost an arm and a leg, only to be worse off. She is also court involved. She has just been placed in another Residential Treatment Center (RTC) with DBT therapy-she is still in detention awaiting a "bed". ( We begged for this!) We turned her in for everything so we could get before a judge and claim dependency and get her help. She runs, cuts school, began stealing, and uses pot. After her last run, she was positive for cocaine-she swore she would never use hard drugs and it never showed in her drug testing (we tested her for 6 months before Residential Treatment Center (RTC) and in Residential Treatment Center (RTC) and after) until now-blew us away but.....

    Teachers always loved her-shes really smart and obedient at school. Therapists were snowed by her. She is well behaved when she wants something at home. They think she's great at detention center and at the start of the first Residential Treatment Center (RTC). Eventually her true colors came out and she gave the Residential Treatment Center (RTC) a run for their money. It actually was a relief, because I thought I was the problem (she told me I was). Your boy's true colors will show to others at some point. How did he get court involved?

    I wonder about drugs as well. Does he have some diagnosis? Are you getting therapy for him or family (my older son was very resentful of difficult child and he needed to talk about this)? Have you asked the judge or PO for support-many schools have youth in custody programs and trackers for court involved kids. Is there gang involement? How do you take care of your self?