Thursday, August 12, 2010

16 year old son

Questioner: tammy

Subject: 16 year old son

Question: I need help understanding my son. He recently skipped a couple classes with some friends and had them pierce his ears. Because of this he has been kicked off the football team. He has been playing for 7 years and now all of a sudden doesn't wanna play.

Today he got kicked out of class for using the "F" word
( this is the second time he used it in the same class). School has only been going on again for two weeks and this has all happened. I have grounded him, taken his cell phone away. How long should I ground him?? Should he have more consequences or different ones?? I am so confused.

He has told me no kid is scared of their mom, Ill just leave when I want. Also he has been asking to go live with his father in a different state. I don't want to be a failure as a mother and sending him there would make me feel that way. He is my first born and I don't think I could survive with out him living with me!! I need help....desperately!!

Answer: Dear Tammy, Okay this is where parenting gets tough and you need to toughen up. He may not be scared of you however hear me when I say all children want, crave and need their parent's approval otherwise we wouldn't spend so much time in therapy as adults! Now, as for the cell phone and other items computer, telephone etc...NO he has to earn those back. If he is going to trash school and not care, then let him not care, ALONE!

As for his leaving when he wants and wanting to live with his dad, is he hearing enough from his dad? This may not be about you and him, he maybe trying to get dad's attention. What do you think? Also, realize something maybe going on at school. Parents would be shocked to realize how much school has changed and what unsafe environments their children are exposed to all day long.

Find out if something is going on with him and his peers. Is he missing his dad? Get the dialogue going but don't do this at the expense of letting him suffer consequences for his behavior. He needs to earn his privileges back slowly. He wants to be an adult he needs to show adult behaviors and choices.

Best Wishes!

M Kay Keller