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Help! how do you survive teenagers??

 
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amother




OP
 

Post  Sat, Dec 14 2019, 10:30 pm
My son can be so obnoxious, chutzpadik. gets mad when we give a consequence or things don't work out his way. Consequences make it worse, he will throw things, scream at us, say we're stupid, tell us to shut up. He wont go to a therapist even though we think he should. Overall he thinks we are the worst parents bec we dont let him have electronics or do fun things (when he loses them as consequences). He is so ungrateful for anything we do. If you saw him out of the house or in school you'd think he was a polite sweet boy. HELP! please tell me this is just a phase! How long will it last??
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amother




Coral
 

Post  Sat, Dec 14 2019, 10:42 pm
amother [ OP ] wrote:
My son can be so obnoxious, chutzpadik. gets mad when we give a consequence or things don't work out his way. Consequences make it worse, he will throw things, scream at us, say we're stupid, tell us to shut up. He wont go to a therapist even though we think he should. Overall he thinks we are the worst parents bec we dont let him have electronics or do fun things (when he loses them as consequences). He is so ungrateful for anything we do. If you saw him out of the house or in school you'd think he was a polite sweet boy. HELP! please tell me this is just a phase! How long will it last??


OP I'm sorry you're going through a rough time. It's hard to respond because you only gave us generalities. Can you give specific examples? Or more background? What conversation precipitated the yelling and throwing? What was his behavior that caused him to lose his electronic use?
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amother




Salmon
 

Post  Sat, Dec 14 2019, 10:43 pm
Hugs, in the teenage stage as well. With my sons, here is what I discovered:

If our relationship revolves around giving consequences for bad behavior (in other words, he's at school all day then returns home to lash out and trigger siblings and rebell against rules all evening), his response to corrections or criticism of any kind is the tantruming and non compliance you describe.

When we invest in enjoying some time with him, giving him undivided attention, every day (reading out loud from his favorite types of books, his father learning with him toward a siyum and other things he earns for learning, rubbing his back and talking about his day, shmoozing with him while he bakes cookies, doing a book of crossword puzzles with him, watching an old black and white comedy sitcom on YouTube), he is MUCH more compliant and well behaved.

I hope this helps. You and your husband investing fifteen to twenty minutes a day in "dating your son" might bring your relationship back to where you want it to be.
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amother




OP
 

Post  Sat, Dec 14 2019, 10:55 pm
Thanks, I agree that the positive attention helps. he goes to work out with my husband and he's happy with that. he does enjoy the positive interactions but then there's any one thing that doesnt go his way and it sets him off, for example tonight my husband was going to chauffeur him someplace but he was so chutzpadik that my husband cancelled. which sent him into a tantrum.
regarding the electronics, he's barely gets electronics to begin with. we have a system in place where he can earn time on it but its not a given in our house. in general we try to limit it. but if he's not getting up nicely for school for example he won't earn it. but he's not working towards getting up on time like going to sleep at a normal time. (and it's not like he's up late doing house chores or school work! both of those he barely does.)
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amother




Coral
 

Post  Sat, Dec 14 2019, 11:09 pm
amother [ OP ] wrote:
Thanks, I agree that the positive attention helps. he goes to work out with my husband and he's happy with that. he does enjoy the positive interactions but then there's any one thing that doesnt go his way and it sets him off, for example tonight my husband was going to chauffeur him someplace but he was so chutzpadik that my husband cancelled. which sent him into a tantrum.
regarding the electronics, he's barely gets electronics to begin with. we have a system in place where he can earn time on it but its not a given in our house. in general we try to limit it. but if he's not getting up nicely for school for example he won't earn it. but he's not working towards getting up on time like going to sleep at a normal time. (and it's not like he's up late doing house chores or school work! both of those he barely does.)


So one thing is, I would try to avoid power struggles wherever possible. If ds was looking forward to going somewhere, and he can only go if dh drives him but now dh cancelled because dh is angry at ds for chutzpah, yes the whole thing will escalate, with both dh and ds upping the ante.

Looking back, would it have been possible to give ds a chance to make amends for his chutzpah INSTEAD of cancelling the commitment to drive him? Iow, have a conversation about how we express ourselves. That tatty is also a person and when you speak that way, it makes him feel badly. And it's also against the Torah. Can we try this conversation again. Can you express yourself in a respectful way? etc.
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amother




OP
 

Post  Sat, Dec 14 2019, 11:26 pm
I agree that was not a good outcome to the situation tonight. but my husband had no interest in taking him after the chutpah he had directed at him, it wasnt a one comment thing, it was repeatedly saying things. I was unavail to take him. my husband was really mad and had was in no way going to take him. I spoke to my son after and said if you dont like the outcome of things think of the way you can chnage things. you cant change what other ppl are doing but you can change how you act to get what you want. but he just keeps blaming me and my husband. thinks he's allowed to act that way if we treat him like that.
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amother




Royalblue
 

Post  Sun, Dec 15 2019, 12:30 am
amother [ OP ] wrote:
Thanks, I agree that the positive attention helps. he goes to work out with my husband and he's happy with that. he does enjoy the positive interactions but then there's any one thing that doesnt go his way and it sets him off, for example tonight my husband was going to chauffeur him someplace but he was so chutzpadik that my husband cancelled. which sent him into a tantrum.
regarding the electronics, he's barely gets electronics to begin with. we have a system in place where he can earn time on it but its not a given in our house. in general we try to limit it. but if he's not getting up nicely for school for example he won't earn it. but he's not working towards getting up on time like going to sleep at a normal time. (and it's not like he's up late doing house chores or school work! both of those he barely does.)


My youngest is 19, so I have some experience with teenagers.

This system sounds very child like for a teenager. He's too old to have basic enjoyment doled out like a privilege. If electronics are ok in your house, let him have access. They may be a very important way for your son to calm down.

Teenaged bodies are actually programmed to stay up late and go to sleep late, so waking up is naturally going to be a struggle. He has to get up for school, of course, but you need to understand that his body is naturally working against it.

Throwing things and calling you names is always unacceptable. But don't turn things into a power struggle. Just leave the room. No one wins if you refuse to drive him somewhere. It's better for next time to say that you are not willing to drive until he has apologized.

If he really can't regulate his emotions, then you do need to insist on therapy. But from what you describe, there's a good possibility that he's just not handling this transitional stage well.

Two year olds are prone to temper tantrums because they know what they want but can't always express their needs and can't always physically accomplish what they want to do. They're frustrated a lot of the time. Teenagers go through something similar. The transition to adulthood is hard on them. (Not to mention that they are essentially marinating in hormones.)

Hang in there. This too shall pass.
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amother




OP
 

Post  Sun, Dec 15 2019, 1:00 am
amother [ Royalblue ] wrote:
My youngest is 19, so I have some experience with teenagers.

This system sounds very child like for a teenager. He's too old to have basic enjoyment doled out like a privilege. If electronics are ok in your house, let him have access. They may be a very important way for your son to calm down.

Teenaged bodies are actually programmed to stay up late and go to sleep late, so waking up is naturally going to be a struggle. He has to get up for school, of course, but you need to understand that his body is naturally working against it.

Throwing things and calling you names is always unacceptable. But don't turn things into a power struggle. Just leave the room. No one wins if you refuse to drive him somewhere. It's better for next time to say that you are not willing to drive until he has apologized.

If he really can't regulate his emotions, then you do need to insist on therapy. But from what you describe, there's a good possibility that he's just not handling this transitional stage well.

Two year olds are prone to temper tantrums because they know what they want but can't always express their needs and can't always physically accomplish what they want to do. They're frustrated a lot of the time. Teenagers go through something similar. The transition to adulthood is hard on them. (Not to mention that they are essentially marinating in hormones.)

Hang in there. This too shall pass.


thank you. I really like the idea of saying we wont drive you until you apologize.
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amother




Azure
 

Post  Sun, Dec 15 2019, 7:00 am
With a teenager, the most important thing is keeping the door open through a loving relationship.

Taking away things like a ride so he can spend needed time out of the house is unfair for him.

A respectful loving discussion when everyone is calm will work more than punishing. Especially if you see it's not helping anyone, why continue with punishing?

You will be surprised on things they can set for themselves as in time limits for electronics, curfew times, being in touch with you about where they are, etc. If you are coming from a loving place not a controlling place he will open up a lot more.

I think he is feeling choked. I still remember how I hate being treated like I knew nothing and couldn't be trusted. I left my house at 17.

You can't control your children forever, they're half adults. You can lovingly guide.

Try to ignore focusing so much on restricting him for a while, and just talk to him!
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amother




Azure
 

Post  Sun, Dec 15 2019, 7:05 am
Also, forcing an apology isn't a real apology, its just words. It teaches nothing. Its for you to feel good, not him.. a real apology comes naturally.

I don't NEED my children to apologize, I can handle it as an adult. Children need to apologize for themselves, because its part of life and relationships.
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LolaGuac




 
 
 
 

Post  Sun, Dec 15 2019, 7:43 am
When one of my boys was a teen he didn’t really fight with us and talk back to us. He made his brother look like a problem child because of how he stomped up the stairs ranting about how terrible we were. Then, the “good,” child went to college and I cleaned his room. I found a spiral notebook and was trying to figure out if it was something I could throw out. I opened to a page, and there was a screed from years earlier about what jerks me and my husband are for taking away his computer. It was his journal, and that’s how he got it all out.

Obviously, you need to keep solid boundaries and consequences and, if he does anything extreme, get a professional to intervene. However, rest assured that his feelings and emotions are pretty normal for his stage in life and he will likely grow up and leave the house and function well in the larger world one day.
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Ruchel




 
 
 
 

Post  Sun, Dec 15 2019, 7:50 am
My uncle did not have a teenage crisis. Not at home not at school. Neither did my husband, unless you mean "not wearing a hat". I definitely think most people have at school or home.
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eema1




 
 
 
 

Post  Sun, Dec 15 2019, 7:59 am
Have you and dh seen a therapist for strategies to help ds? If not that may be a good place to start. You could even tell ds that you are going because you are looking for skills to a healthier household and then maybe he will buy into eventually going with you...
Also, have you spoken with the school guidance counselor?
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amother




Lemon
 

Post  Sun, Dec 15 2019, 8:05 am
eema1 wrote:
Have you and dh seen a therapist for strategies to help ds? If not that may be a good place to start. You could even tell ds that you are going because you are looking for skills to a healthier household and then maybe he will buy into eventually going with you...
Also, have you spoken with the school guidance counselor?


If he is good in school. Leave school out of it. Let everyone there keep seeing him in the most wonderful light. No reason to sully their view.
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amother




Denim
 

Post  Sun, Dec 15 2019, 10:44 am
When mine start high school things like getting up in am becomes their responsibility. Believe me rhe school will have consequences if hes late. I dont wake my kids at all once in hs.
I agree with others he maybe needs a little more downtime and leeway.
Being rude to you is out of the question and your always entitled to say no to something he wants you to do for him (esp after he's been rude)
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