Posted by: Carol | 2004/03/07

Between a Tyre and a Tube!!


i have posted on here several times about Garth and i have also often given advice to others struggling with kids .. but im a bit stuck here....

Garth is almost 17 ADD , brilliant etc... he was expelled fro his last school last year and at the time i warned him its his last chance .. im quite frankly tired of paying for uniforms , paying school fees paying for shrinks .. and generally walking around in square circles tring to help this boy.

I put him into college at the beginning of the year , and i warned him .. if he doesnt shape thats it not paying another cent still paying debt that his oldest brotehr caused , his oldest brother stephen u may remember is a heroin addict and has a std 6 !!.

now i see he is feeling badly 2% ?? please !!!

cant understand thisboy .. he has a motorbike that we helped him with , it isnt paid for yet , but he is buggering it up , i give him an allowance for petrol everyweek but he cant seem to make it last .. he will for eg come home 5 times a day .... which isnt necessary ..... we dont have money , he runs up our phone account and lies about it .. the minute he is on my pc he messes it up ......when i complain i get told what a lousy mother i am

he doesnt even bother to keep himself clean .. my hubs chased him out of the sitting room tonite because he smells ... i see no sign that he is on drugs , and having gone through his brother ..i would pick it up, besides money is safe here.

we are just starting to get our lives which has been difficult on track .... the debt that the kids father caused is nearly paid ,. we have had an uphill battle coping with troubled teens and no support from their father .

what im asking i think is this .. how much more must a parent be expected to do , i look at his sister , same background .... in fact she got even less than her brothers .... but she is working hard at tech .. she got a bursary , she has goals

my two boys are like their father.. no sense of responsibility and no self discipline .

As far as i can tell Garth doesnt want to help himself , he cant even be bothered to take his meds .....he isnt on ritalin i have him on herbal meds .. which when he takes them works like a bomb

somewhere he has got to make a descion , i can help him get his life right , but i cant make that descion for him .... its like being an alchoholic is available but the decsion must be made

i cant quite believe that this kind of behaviour can forever be excused as he is just a teenager , surely even a teenager knows he has to bath?

im so frustrated .. i know how to help him .... but what to do if he wont help himself , and his ways are part of his nature like his father ??

I cant take it , i may be starting a new job soon .... i also need a life , and mine has been almost destroyed by two boys

any suggestions please

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Our expert says:
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Dear Carol, Hello again.
Your frustration is entirely understandable, and you've had really bad luck with the way your two boys have chosen to approach life. As you're realizing, a priority has to be leading your OWN life and enjoying it. It's fine to be helpful to the boys to a point, but especally at their ages, they must take responsibility for their own choices.
If G makes unnecessary trips and runs out of petrol --- leave it to him to sort out that problem. If he needs to borrow money to get emergency petrol to bring the bike home, then subtract that from his next petrol money. He should not be allowed to use your computer at all, until he has bothered to learn how to do so without messing it up.
Make it a condition if he wants to sit in the sittingroom or elsewhere with you adults, or even to share a meal, that he must be clean and sweet-smelling. The point is that he is free to choose not to bath --- but not to fail to wash and then to expect others to put up with his smelliness. He must understand that all choices have consequences, and if you don't like the consequences, try making another choice.
You can make it clear that you love him, even if you understandably and naturally, don't love some of the things he does. Being "a teenager" is no excuse for what he's ben doing. But if he finds the consequences of not helping himself unpleasant enough, he'll help himself. So long as he can assume that you'll always step in and rescue him from the meses he's making, why bother to help himself ?
You've handled a long and really difficult series of problems in life with courage and fortitude. let him find his way of doing likewise.

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

Our users say:
Posted by: lady nina | 2004/03/08

hi there

i'm so sorry to hear you are battling and being a mom i can understand your frustration and anger and fear

one thing i've learned the hard way is that every person and circumstance is placed on our road to make us better people, for a moment take your eyes of your kids and their failure and look at yourself - what do you have to learn from all this ?
maybe that your best is not good enough ?
maybe that you can't live there lives?

maybe that a person can only receive and give as much love as he has inside of himself? your son doesn't love himself and therefor can't give or receive any love you want to give - that doesn'r mean you are a failure it only means that he is unable to see all your efforts as love for him - because he "hates" himself he thinks everyone hates himself - there is nothing, anyone can do for him anymore - he has to change and grow - yes its painful an being a parent we want to protect but in that we are stopping them to fall, learn, stand up and try again

give your love to the one who is able to accept it

take care


Reply to lady nina
Posted by: Gail | 2004/03/08

I really feel for you and wish I could help but I cant?I can only be a penpal to you and we can occasionally email if you like?Im nearly 30 and have twins who are 5 :) I have had a hard life and still do if you wanna chat occasionally - time permitting seeing we have busy lives here is my email -

By the way Im a decent mother :)

Reply to Gail

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