A couple short weeks ago I was mulling over how my difficult child was skirting the zip code of easy child. Was... Slowly he started to slip up, at first it was in small ways then he got to be a real problem. We never got to crisis level so I am glad for that. He had begun to cycle before school started and we adjusted his medications. husband and I attributed the slip to normal cycling so didn't think much of it. The last few days he started to really get out of hand. I feel bad because I understimated him, sort of. I got that dissapointed burnt out feeling and pretty much got withdrawn, angry and assumed he was just never going to be anything but a mean person, the old him. Then we checked his medications... Since he is so close to 18 I have been trying a hands off approach with his medications. He is totally compliant so we were at the point that he needed to call in refills, fill the pill case ect. He needs to learn to manage his own care. I guess I neglected to realize that he is a late bloomer and that he may not be ready for that sort of responsibility even if he is willing. Lo and behold he got confused with his medication change and had been missing some of his much needed mood stabilizer. Okay, lesson learned. I feel bad though because I distrust him so much that I judged him too harshly. Although his actions are his own I still empathize that his medications were a bit off. His choices to act out, lie and be a troll are not excusable but I feel bad he has so many loss of priviliges to "wake up" to. He has to be accountable for his choices. If I cave in he will use it as a weakness, he always does. He can't help but be manipulative. Life lesson for him I suppose. Then it gets worse. The job he loves so much, the one he gave up his beloved football for, the one he was using to save for a car (actually putting money in the bank?!?!?) has gone south. The owners who started out so nice have lost their kind exterior and the environment has gone from happy to semi unpleasant. Long story short, his hours were cut from 3 days and a total of 12 hours down to 3 hours on one night. There was no real explanation so it could be his mood though he says he always tried to be pleasant or it could be that they bribed an adult waitress back from quitting with adding to her hours which she probably needs or like 100 other mystery reasons. The owner didn't really give him a clear reason just gave him a shrug off and a "we only need you one day so now you can have more time for homework" line of junk. A month ago they loved him and were surprised he was so reliable. He hasn't gotten any warnings or talks. Just a "shove off" out of nowhere. I just feel bad for the poor kid like he is getting kicked when he is down. He was doing so well and was so happy. Now he is pretty deflated and hurt. I'm trying to be supportive but he still does have a "debt to pay" at home for all his recent misdeeds. So, due to dumb luck he is just having a real bad week. I know he is old enough to have to pay the piper but it still makes me sad to see things go so poorly. We are so rural that if he loses this job there is nothing else, nothing. On the plus side we got his first 1/4 grades. 3 A's, 2 B's and 2 C's. He is doing all that in spite of the fact that the Special Education. is soooo not living up to it's end of the iep.