Online Parent Support Chat


I feel that disciplining is not helping and is driving him farther away...

My name is Gale and I am a mother of a 14-year-old son and it seems over time that I have noticed a small amount of resistance to guidelines that I set for the family to adhere to. I am a single parent. My son has a way of interpreting my stern guidelines in to terms which mean that I do not love and support, which could be further from the truth. I feel that when he verbalizes his thoughts, I am offended by what he said, and I correct him which causes a big dispute, and attempt defend my position on why by correcting him, which he does not easily accept.

At times he confrontational which I have disciplined him for but today he decided to defined himself, which became a physical altercation, which I am perplexed by. We did contact his biological father which has not been actively engaged in his life for over 11 years, which I am cautious in involving him because his father is over 800 miles away. My hesitation there lies in fact that his father does not discipline him nor does he impose guidelines laying and foundation of respect for my son.

My son claims that he does lots of things that I request of him, such as light cooking, baby sitting his sibling, and other request. But he feels that I don't support him emotionally, which I can concur, due to my sole responsibility of being the provider and the parent without support of family, friends or clergy. I haven't had a stable job in over 1 year, which has taken its toll on me, which intern has place lots of stress on my son.

His father has anger issues in which has driven me away and did not actively seek a relationship with his son for over 11 years. I would like to know how to best involve his father, relieving the stress from son and myself. I would also like to know how to be there for my son when he is confrontational without being intimidated not feeling that I should discipline my son. At this point I feel that disciplining is not helping and is driving him farther away.

My Out-of-Control Teen


Cell Phone Problems

We live out of town on a rural property and had to go to town to do a few things. We did not feel comfortable leaving our son (14years) at home for several hours by himself so he had to come along (which he hates). I offered him a compromise of going to the local pool or being able to stroll around the shopping centre by himself while we shopped. He didn’t like any of these ideas and basically winged really badly all day. A big part of the winging was we said we would look at mobile phones with him as he wants to purchase a new one (his old one broke). We looked at several phones and grabbed some brochures but I think he thought he could get it today but we said no we will take them home and look at the best deals first before making a decision. He wants a phone worth a total of $1465.00 over the duration of a plan etc (he has saved $500.00 already). This phone provides him with free text and MSN for $30.00 a month. It also has internet access and his father and I don’t like this feature as we don’t want him viewing porn. The whole push for this phone is because it is cool and ALL of his friends have one. We are hesitant to help him pay the monthly charges for this phone with his allowance as he does not consistently complete his chores and what will he have to work towards if we allow him to get it now?

My Out-of-Control Teen

He is quick to anger (like his dad)...

I have a 2 teenage sons who lives with their father (since our divorce in 2006) The reason why they are with their dad is because of the way the youngest son Cory behaved with me. (He wouldnt do that with his dad).

I partially blame his father for the way Cory is. His dad was very verbally abusive to me in the last few years of our marriage. I believe that Cory learnt that from his dad.

He is quick to anger(like his dad). He is a tough one & I respect his toughness in alot of ways. Cory has Type 1 Diabetes that he has had since he was 9yrs old. He is now almost 16. My gripe is that despite the fact I try to give him everything he wants(money when he asks for it, clothes bought) and when I ask him to send an email thank you to his Grama for the money she sent at Christmas... its not getting sent. I have had to call and ask both him and his 17yr old brother if they had sent it yet and STILL not done and today is the 30th!! I am so disappointed and today I told them that. Cory started to shout and sware at me saying it wasnt his fault because his email account was not working. I had set up a new email acct for him yesterday although he insisted to try and use an older one. I feel like I have gone out of my way and not asking too much.

I am ashamed that they cant take the time to send a thank you. But whats worse is to be told I am being a dick and to be hung up on... then receive a text from Cory to say it was nt his fault and I was talking to him like a child.

I sent a message to him saying I was upset by his words and very saddened and I would nt be mentioning it to him again.

I sent one to his older brother as well.(I dont get sworn at or hung up on by him although there was a snap and slight raising of the voice.

Things are hard for them at the moment. Their home life with their dad is not a relaxed happy one. Their dad is a very agressive one who is has money problems (he was laid off 6 months ago and money is tight... may lose the house and its just depressing.

I dont want the boys to go without and I realize the only time they contact me is when they need money. (its only Cory that does that ) as Beau has a pt job now. I wish I could do something so that I wouldnt get the verbal abusive swearing and disrespect when I ask Cory to do something.

I dont want to be too hard on him as he is going through alot.

My Out-of-Control Teens


She is 19, with the emotions of a 15 year old...

Dear Mark,

We have been over-indulgent parents, and our daughter is lazy, easily bored and without ambition or goals. She also has ADHD. As her mom, I did lots of things wrong, but some things right. We have a very close, caring and open relationship based on mutual respect. She has stayed away from drugs, sex, and until her second year of college, alcohol. She is not “out of control with anger issues or other law-breaking activities. That said, she has no direction. She has always been socially “behind” her peers.

She wanted to go to a state university an hour away, but without a specific educational direction, I felt it would be better for her to continue to live at home and go to a community college. My husband (who is more indulgent than me) convinced me to allow her to go. She lived in an all-girls dorm with her best friend. She ended the first semester with mostly Ds and on probation. She pulled her grades up the second semester to Bs and got off probation. At the end of the year, some other friends asked her to help save money and share an off-campus apt. (right across the street from campus. We agreed, and she spent the first semester of this year socializing with everyone in her building. She had a great social life, but stayed up late, drank some, and missed lots of classes due to “morning migrains.” She has all Ds and a C.

I made her get a student loan the first year, since she didn’t take high school seriously, I told her I wasn’t paying for her education. However, we make too much money for any aid, and her loan started accumulating interest from day one. The second year we paid, with the stipulation that she pay us back. Now she is home for break and I have decided she will attend the nearest community college and live at home until she gets herself on track.

She is 19, with the emotions of a 15 year old. She doesn’t know what she wants, or what she likes to do. I have told her she has to get a job. And I am implementing rules and trying to implement structure in our home, which I am not very good at myself.

I also have a 13 year old boy, who has had a much more involved mom (I was very ill when my daughter was little). But I see him starting to develop some of these traits also. He is also very ADD, and has some developmental problems, but he was much more docile than she was in temperament, except for he is VERY sensitive to criticism, or even what he thinks is criticism.

Thank you so much for this program. It has confirmed what I have been thinking for a long time, but couldn’t quite figure out what and how to change. Even better, my husband has finally had the light bulb come on about his “enabling” behaviors. He has NO expectations of anyone, and just begins to do everything that he perceives as needing done. It is very destructive to all of us.

Thanks again,

Mrs. T.

My Out-of-Control Teen

Over-Indulged Teen

My son, age 14, spends part of his time at his Dad’s house and part at my house. For the past several years he spent the week at his Dad’s and the weekends at my house. Then his Dad said he couldn’t take Nick’s behavior any more and Nick came to live with me during the week and is with his Dad on the weekends and holidays (his Dad is retired). Nick is generally a good kid (if you give him whatever he wants! Yes, we were over-indulgent); he does very well in school, but he exemplifies the ODD behaviors to a tee. He’s out-of-control when he’s crossed, uncaring, manipulative, destroys property. He also has low self-esteem and seems afraid to do almost anything new.

I want to increase Nick’s self-reliance and change my parenting style to a more assertive style. Luckily, I recently married a man from Wisconsin who has successfully raised responsible children and who had told me prior to my finding your website that I was being too indulgent with Nick and not requiring him to do chores, etc., so I have support from him regarding your parenting strategies.

My Over-Indulged Teen


Everything we do annoys him...

I have a 17yr old son who feels he is too cool for school. He doesn't skip. Does his homework. But refuses to study for tests. This makes him an A-B student who brings home Cs. Also He has been angry since birth, I swear. He recently has escalated to physical violence towards me and his sister and destroying property in my home with very little provocation. This last time I threatened him with police intervention the next time. I really don't want to do this. He swears a lot now in our home and at school. He is never really very happy, but not really depressed either.

Everything we do annoys him. It's like walking on egg-shells in our home. I'm tired of it. He really is a very good kid. Lacks motivation and blames others instead of taking responsibility for his own actions. I just don't know where to turn. I think something is seriously off with him. I am divorced. His father is an active alcoholic who loves him a lot and does the best he can. I am in recovery now for almost 9 yrs. We have always presented a united front for the kids.

My Out-of-Control Teen


I can not let my son get away this time and I demand he responds to the problem...

My son has become very much verbally disrespectful and abusive to me. Each offense of his did not get addressed because he refuses consequences and tells me to shut up etc when trying to talk to him about it.So he gets away with it. As a result he curses me more frequently. Tonight he asked me to help him with Math and he had trouble to get it, so he blamed teacher, text book and me. He took his frustration and anger at me and cursed me again. He punched the wall and slammed the door when I stated the behavior was unacceptable. I can not take this any more because this is endless and frequent and with everything now even with my help he asked. I want him out of the house. I feel like raped by him with his foul languages. For almost two years I could stay cool, but today I finally lost it. My tears were all over my face and I just don't want to be around any more. I don't see hope to stop his this behavior that is getting worse and worse and I can't get him to respond to the problem. This has now affected our relationship re-build hard. I see him as an abusive partner in the house. He has made improvements in a lot of areas as he chooses to do, but definitely gets worse with the verbal abuse. He uses his improvements of other things to threaten me that I have to put up with his abuse or he would stop the other improvements he made. I would imagine that he would leave this house on a very bad term with me and would not have much change with our relationship until he is 40 if that would happen. Where we are standing now is that his behaviors cause conflicts between us and my disciplines and consequences have made him very angry and resentful.

Anyway, my point is that I can not let my son get away this time and I demand he responds to the problem. I want to demand him to give a written apology and come up with what he would do differently next time when he feels like to curse me. Until he acts on my request which he had always successfully got away with, I would not have anything to do with him at home - no speaking, no cooking and do nothing for him this x-mas and his BD on Jan.2. Basically I would be on strike because of his mistreatment to me. If he refuses to make any amends and continue to be verbally abusive, then he needs to find his own place to live. I won't be able to speak about my request to him because as soon as I start talking, he just cuts me off, tells me to shut up and be rude and disrespectful. So, I plan to meet the counselor tomorrow and ask her to talk with my son and get him to be clear about my demand. Do you think I have any chance to be successful to get his attention and look at this issue so that we can manage to live together? What would you suggest me to do? It can not be verbal with him because he just cuts me off and tells me to shut up. I've been mostly using notes to communicate things with him or repeat the house rule if he broke the no alcohol and the drug at home.

My Out-of-Control Teen


I blame my husband for not being a role model for my son...

Please can you help me…. My husband is out of control also, but in a passive, can,t get it together kind of way. He has never disciplined my eldest son who is 15 years of age, he as over indulged him, and has left him to raise himself, no boundaries or values or discipline, and I am at my wits end with my husband and my eldest son, who treats me and his siblings with great disrespect, he threatens me, and has thrown things at me, he steals and lies (but has witnessed my husband lying for years), and does as he pleases, if I try to stop him doing something he shouldn,t be doing,(like taking his brothers bike to pieces because he wants to rebuild parts of his own bike) he gets angry and has pushed me around and threatened me, has his little brother in tears often. My marriage is in tatters because I blame my husband for not being a role model for my son, and for not disciplining him or giving him any boundaries…we are very close to becoming divorced over this, I no longer like my husband or my son.

My son has been disrespectful and rude for many months, he leaves the property without asking or telling me where he is going, steals my mobile phone and uses it to ring his friends, he basically does as he pleases and thinks he is old enough to do as he pleases, threatens to phone social services or the police and says he will tell them that I have pushed him or hit him !!

OI no longer know him or like him, I feel very sad and angry a lot of the time, I feel exhausted and now suffer from great ill health, I have allergy symptoms continually, runny nose, throbbing headaches, sore itchy eyes, I have anaemia, and a very low white cell count, and have had live blood analysis done to try to find out why I am so tired and have been told that my immune system is not working, the white cells are not as numerous as they should be, and they do not mobilize as they should….. I get breathless just going upstairs, My health has been getting bad since my son became out of control. The boy I loved has gone and I feel bereft, and sad. He hates me, he say so often, and to be honest I feel nothing for him, and wish I had never had him.

He has said today that he is starting a job on Monday, he has not asked us if he can have a job, and when I said that I needed to think about this, he got really angry and shouted abuse at me, he said that he didn,t need our permission, that we couldn,t stop him, and he stormed off in a rage.

My concerns are that he is out of control and rude and disrespectful, and iI feel that he needs to be respectful and decent at home before I can allow him to take employment… He has been so nasty and rude and threatened to hurt me yesterday….I asked him to have a salad with his lunch, as we had lots of salad to use up, and it costs a lot of money, ( we eat organic food) and we can,t afford to waste this food, and because he needs to eat something that is good for him,(the whole family was eating salad with their dinner. He refused and stormed off after hurling abuse at me, then crept back into the house and stole a plateful of the cooked food, and took it down the end of the garden… I followed him and got angry, and he then threatened me with violence. A little later, I went into the garage and he had taken his younger brothers bike to pieces to remove some of the parts and had put them onto his bike which was broken ( and was not repaired as he kept breaking it, riding it roughly over muddy tracks, and not looking after it, it was becoming too expensive to keep getting it repaired, ---- his younger brother cherishes his bike and takes great care of it, and he burst into tears when he saw what his brother had done, My eldest son ignored my youngest sons anger and tears, and just cycled off to town after being told to stay on the property and repair his brothers bike.!!

With this background, as I mentioned today my son has told me that he is starting a job on Monday !!!. We have only just started the programme and I ask you please Mark if you could help us with this,

What should we say to our son, I worry that he is so out of control and disrespectful that this must be sorted out first. And also that he is too immature to deal with the money he will get paid…

Please can I ask your advice on how to deal with this…. I am sure after finishing the programme I would know, but I really need help now. My son is going to explode if he is told he can,t have the job,,,,

But I really don,t want him to have it.

Also, might it be good for my son to take the job, as he would be getting discipline from his boss, he has never had any from his father, or will it open a can of worms., my son is like a 6 year old in a 15 year old body and I worry that he will become even more *empowered* and difficult to deal with if he has a job and money, he is so angry and aggressive and bored, he thinks he is old enough to do as he pleases, will letting him have this job reinforce this attitude in him, My son has tried very hard to get a job and has been walking from shop to shop asking for a part time job for months, everyone in our town knows he wants a job as he has asked in every shop….What should we do, should we keep him at home for now until he behaves better, or let him have the job.??? All his pocket money he gets he spends straight away, our younger son has hundreds of dollars saved, but our out of control teenager doesn,t know how to deal with money and just spends it, on rubbish takeaway food etc.. the job is in a tool shop.

My Out-of-Control Teen

Should we allow him the privilege to earn the use of the car...


I recently joined your program on line. This is the first time in several years that I think I have found a possible solution to correct mine and my sons behavior. I realize that I have made mistakes in over indulging my son. He is 17 and seems to be completely out of control.

My son, myself and my husband(my sons step father) live with my parents, so my parents have helped co parent my son since he was four (my sons father died when he was four). In September my father decided he could use my mothers car as long as he maintained a certain grade average. From day one he did not even try. Over the past few months my son has failed two classes, been suspended from school for showing up high, has skipped classes and has been getting worse. Last week, before I came across your web site my father and I took away the car privileges and when my son refused to take out the garbage we took away his cell phone. for two days he refused to go to school until he got the car back, when I said tell me if you are dropping out or not because I need to sign papers at the school, he decided he wanted to go back.

My father went away for a few days this week, and I went away over night. I came home to find out that my mother let him take the car and her cell phone to go out with friends. She tells me that he is very remorseful and did a bunch of chores for her and felt that he could use the car for this weekend, however when his grandfather gets home he could not. I spoke with her at length about interfering in his consequences, she however is a very weak person.

My question to you is now that we have taken away all that is important to my son, should we allow him the privilege to earn the use of the car or do we stick by what we first said which is you will never have access to the car again. Also, what happens when my son refuses to do anything, which he has done in the past. I will tell you however that today for the first time in along time, he helped me unload packages from my car and cleaned up a mess without any back talk. I do know however as I start putting some chores into effect I am going to receive some resistance because he rarely shows up at the house, he goes right to a friends house after school. I would like this to stop, hopefully with the chores that I put in place.

Sorry this is so long, but this has been going on for a long time.

Thank you for this website and your help.

Online Parent Support


I do retaliate, by either yelling back or some punishment...

I have an 11 year old daughter who consistenly tries to get out of school, always complaining of some illness or other.

I have spoken to the school and the school councellor and they have both told me that once she is at school all is well.

She is not being bullied in fact I think sometimes she is the bully.

At home whenever she is asked to do something the answer is always "later, when I'm ready," or "leave me alone". When I demand that she does something, she starts yelling and calling me names, telling me that she hates me and the like. I for the most part try to ignore this as numerous books and online sites have told me to do.

Sometimes I do retaliate, by either yelling back or some punishment or other.

I have considered sending her to boarding school, which is way out of my price range unfortunatly, and also if I did that I would be passing on my problems to someone else and I feel that it is my responsibility to raise my own child... our 16 year old son and our daughter. We live on a 5 acre property with two horses, two cats and a dog, she has all the creature comforts, tv, computer, huge room.

My husband works away and is only home for one week out of four, he has been working away for years.

I don't know what to do or who to contact.

My Out-of-Control Child


He is just so stubborn...

My child has ADHD, ASD and severe anxiety... he also manipulates to get out of doing what he wants to do. He suffers social and general anxiety. Even to the point now that he worries about things like the bubble in the carpet. I have seen him be totally rude to me and refusing to do what I ask, have a temper tantrum and scream over the top of me. He starts this grunting like a wild captured animal so he doesn’t have to listen to me. Then one day I took him to his music lesson. When I went in he was acting so sugary sweet and laughing with the teacher. So very manipulative!

He is 15 nearly 16 but developmentally he is only about 12... so entering puberty. He gets so worked up and as a result gets out of doing what he has to do. We try very hard to support him through difficulties but he is so extremely stubborn. He currently takes so many meds and is seeing a psychiatrist every few months. I am a teacher and have given up work 3 years ago when things started going bad.

My immediate problem – we are having melt downs and rages because he is asked to do basic things like pick up things from the floor of his room or stop hiding food under the couch. He then becomes indigent and screams over the top of us... seeming to have absolutely no respect for either of us. He groans over the top of us which is quite infuriating. Last night when sent to his room to go to bed be was screaming uncontrollably at 11pm and then he began kicking holes in the wall. How do we deal with this today? He has no remorse at all.

Taking things away and punishing him doesn’t seem to have an impact as this has been the main weapon. He is just so stubborn. How do we break this?

The psychiatrist and paediatrician argue that he is so stressed and he just has to let this out!! It has ruined our family life ashe controls what we eat, where we go and who we see.. They want me to pull him out of school and homeschool him as school is causing the stress. I can see it being stressful but I am not strong enough to fight him every minute of the day. I did do this on their advise for 3 months and it nearly killed me and him!!!. He just dug his heals in and refused to work.

I am a mother who is just barely coping. A husband who works far too hard and shouldn’t have to spend his precious time in battles with a stubborn child.

My Out-of-Control Teen


Problems with young adults living at home...

I am the parent of a 23 year old boy who still lives at home with us, i.e. with me, my husband, who is the boy's stepfather and my 21 year old daughter, his sister.

We have had endless problems with this boy over the years and he has been a trial since the very day he was born in fact. A quick background on him: he is intelligent, was sporty but gave it up, now plays in heavy rock bands, smokes and drinks to excess at times.

Hi room is a pig sty, he abuses our property when we are not around, and amongst many other things, speaks terribly to his sister .

Overall, my son is a good kid, I know that, but he has stolen from us in the past and I believe still does and he has a total disregard of looking after our property and adhering to my rules of keeping his room clean. I don't have a real problem if he wants to live in the mess, but our dishes are left in there and the smell emanating from his room drifts into our dining room which you walk through to the rest of the house. He also leaves his cigarette buts overflowing in the container I bought for him next to the couch on the verandah where he smokes, even though this area is used by others too and I have asked him on countless occasions to empty it, which he then does, but then leaves the garbage bag on the floor.

I'd love to throw him out but he has finally settled into study doing a University degree and we feel we'd like to support him in this. He talks about leaving home next year, but I can't see it happening as he spends a lot of the money he earns, drives a car etc.

What I am writing to you for, is I searched the internet on "problems with young adults living at home" and your website selling your book came up. I am wondering if your book is aimed more at younger children, adolescents in fact, not 23 year olds. Would this book help me? (I say me as the problems with him have always ended up at my feet. Others try, but give up quickly and it falls back on me again.) Over the years, there have been counselling sessions and earlier this year he was under an organisation as he was suffering depression and anorexia and found help for this himself. He is a lot better now and has told me that they taught him some strategies for dealing with his anger. He has always been very clever though when dealing with any health professionals and school counsellors.

My Out-of-Control Adult Child


18 year old son angry at the world...

I have an 18 year old son who is angry at the world. He hates me and everyone around him and I don’t know why. 6 weeks ago he took my car out and wrecked it and got a DUI. We went to court on Wednesday and they are trying to get it moved to juvenile court since he was 17 when it happened. Not sure if it will happen and at this point I’m not sure he cares. I do not want this to ruin his life but I have a feeling it is going to. He has not driven since October 23rd and has had his license revoked until February 22, 2009. Now he can’t work and I take him to school everyday and either I or his girl-friend pick him up from school. I’m sure this is embarrassing to him. He also started chewing tobacco and smoking cigarettes. I have forbid him to do it and he does it anyway, right in front of me.

He has been living with me for the last 2 years. I have been divorced for 5 years and prior to him living with me he was living with his dad; who is very strict. His dad has a temper and all they ever did was fight. He begged and pleaded with me to come live with me. I agreed and now I’m wondering if it is too late to help him. I am pretty easy going and I hate conflict. Now it’s coming back to bite me. He swears all the time and when he’s mad at me he calls me terrible names (His dad used to do the same thing). He is a good student and is scheduled to graduate from high school in 3 weeks. I pray he will. He seems very depressed. He has one friend and he treats him like crap so he has stopped coming around. He has a girlfriend and I sense she is getting tired of his negative attitude also. Is it too late to help him? Where do I begin?

I have asked him who he’s mad at. I’ve asked him how I can help. He just responds “I don’t know”. My insides feel like they are being ripped out. I hate seeing my son so angry, unhappy and hateful. I just want him to be happy. Isn’t that my job is to raise him to be a happy human being? I am so lost and all I want to do is to help him. I know he is feeling the whole world is against him. I’m truly afraid he will commit suicide. I could not live with myself if that happened.

I just want my son to have a purpose in this world and to be a happy person.

My Out-of-Control Teen


We are thinking of putting her into boarding school...

We are parents of a beautiful 13 year old girl we adopted when she was 5 years old. She has been with us for two years prior to the adoption in foster care (since she was almost three).

We have climbed many mountains and I, especially have cried rivers because of various behavioral problems she has. I'm positive that we can somehow overcome all these terrible obstacles we have to face but we do need some assistance and help. We have prayed about her problems, talked to her, begged, disciplined, tried sending her to her room, taking away privileges and nothing seemed to have really worked. First the doctors diagnosed her with ADHD and after about two years of Nerotherapy, Ritalin, special diets etc., the young lady doing the nerotheraphy with our daughter suggested that we should look into the symptoms of AD and see if our daughter does not maybe rather fit in with those symptoms than having ADHD. We feel that it is much more spot on than any other diagnoses doctors have made and after she has spend about a year and a half with a psychiatrist having a hour session each week, we are still in the situation where we feel like pulling out our hair due to desperation and worry about her and the future.

She recently stole about R500.00 from my mother-in-law visiting us and tried do spend it at school and even gave it away to all that she came accross trying to get rid of the money before coming home. After that there were more incidents but not as big and from us rather than someone else.

The Psyciatrist suggested we take her to the police station and arrange for one of the constables to just lock her up a short while in order for her to see what consiquences her actions can have. It helped in a way although she stole money again on occations after that and once admitted after a short sermon from me that she took it but could not get rid of all of it. She's manipulative and wants everything her way. She will scream at us when we try to discipline her (almost like she is our parent and needs to teach us the lesson) She does not show remorse and even after punishment will do the same thing again.

We read an article where the adoption parents annulled the adoption and sent their daughter to a security home where they'd visit their daughter on week-ends and take her home on holidays only but that is not an option at all. Our daughter was nog given to us to give back to a system that will only break her even further. We know that she had a lot of hurt before coming to stay with us but we feel we just need some advice on how to help her overcome the bitterness and hatered she has unconsciously and have a real nice life with people that loves her to bits.

She's very intelligent but her school reports showns different. She does not want to study but due to us having our own business and both of us working full day, we can not spend the time needed with her to do homework. We try as many times as possible to fetch her from school and help her but then she tends to do the helplessness act and we end up doing it for her which is also wrong. We had to get my mother-in-law to come and stay with us to help out but it seems they (our daughter and my mother-in-law) are even more fire and oil than anything else.

If she passes, she'll be going to high-school next year (grade 8) and we are thinking of putting her into boarding school.

My Out-of-Control Teen

I don’t want to send her away – but at the same time I think I just about have to...

I am desperately trying to find a real solution to my awful predicament. I have a daughter who is an Honors senior student, who has won numerous awards and is a cheerleader and the President of her school’s FFA Chapter. She has already been accepted at the college she wanted to go to and has even received a $4000 scholarship already.

Yet at home she is fine unless I confront her over some transgression – large or small – she becomes sullen, NEVER does anything at home either at all or only half-way or has to be told every single time. She lies and says she has done it or has always always got the quick answer – like she has spent that time rehearsing it. Just in the past month she has run up the cell phone bill $350.00 with texting and just this week had an accident in my car and did not tell me about it until I questioned her and then told me a lie first. I was not this kind of teenager – I cooperated with my parents – but I had a father too.

I am a single mother – her father basically fell of the face of the earth when she was 3. She has always been resistant and difficult but has never had to be asked or told to do her homework. She has worked very hard to do well in school in order to get scholarships so she could attend college.

I saw a pattern emerging as she became a teenager – she is nice to everyone but then brings all her resentment home and directs it all at me. I wouldn’t say I ever tolerated it but tried to reason with her and get her to deal with her emotions and process them and stand up for herself at school more. Yet she has little respect or appreciation for me – has been throwing giant temper tantrums, damaging some things like the back door and making huge scenes at home and being very angry and telling me she hates me and even saying she hopes I die.

I am exhausted and discouraged and I get loud at times because I am saying the same things over and over and she is almost 18 and I know all the things she is doing she knows are wrong and now is telling me all the kids act this way – like she is doing this stuff to fit in.

We are getting worse off – she used to say she would do better but then never does anything different and now there’s more of it and she says she is going to stay this way and I can just deal with it. I am just beyond fed up – her bags are packed at the door – I’ve told her she has to go somewhere because I can’t pay these bills she is creating – and now to be able to fix the car I think I should take the car and drop the insurance to make up for what it will cost to repair it. Not because she had an accident but because she tried to cover it up and then lied about it. None of this is what I want but I cannot stand any of this – I do not understand her at all and I am spread so thin with working an hour away to support us. She is really creeping me out and I don’t even know what she will think of next but I know I would like to skip it. This is a nightmare to me. I am very overwhelmed at what other costs she can come up with that I can’t afford. I now resent her and I am very hurt and angry myself.

All of this drama is exhausting and boring – much more energy than doing the chores would take. The lying drives me up the wall.

I know I’m not good at dealing with her – I’ve told her now it is either get right or let’s find her another place to live – not because I really want that but I cannot stand my life being turned upside down like this every week – I was never like this – I thought life was much better when I did what I was supposed to do – it wasn’t fun but my parents rewarded me with more privileges. This child just acts like she is supposed to have it all and that I don’t exist. I don’t have any more patience – I am trying to keep her alive and safe and healthy. I wouldn’t let her have her license for almost a year because she was determined she knew how to drive – and everything is like that – she knows everything, she is endlessly competitive – always trying to show me I’m wrong and no matter how many times I’m right she just keeps on.

I don’t know what to do. I don’t want to send her away – but at the same time I think I just about have to because this is truly unbearable for me – we don’t have much family to speak of. We moved here 3 years ago – she knows more people here than I do because of me commuting an hour to work everyday. We did start going to church a couple of weeks ago.

I believe she is deliberately and knowingly making these choices and that my requests for the chores are reasonable. She is trying to dictate everything and tell me how to talk and how lucky I should feel because everyone else talks and acts worse to their parents. I say baloney - it is all a ploy to get control of me – honestly I can’t stand this.

My Out-of-Control Teen

He is angry aggressive, smoking cigarettes, smoking weed, drinking alcohol, not accepting rules, not being honest...

I am a desperate single mother of three children.

My daughter is 21, my middle son is 13 (turning 14 in February) and my youngest son is 12.

I have no trouble at all with the first and last children of mine, but my middle one whose name is Mohammed (Mo for short) is the one whom I have tried every single trick possible. You can name it, but still seems that I couldn't find the right path. He makes lost of promises, doesn't keep even one, which I know its part of his age and part of his drug addiction. Maybe its better to introduce him completely so you will get a correct idea.

Me, my ex-husband and my seven year old daughter moved to Australia, 1 August 1994(From Iran). Then he was born on 3 February 1995, - as you can see lots of changes in your family life has occurred by moving to a foreign country. then when he was only 20 months old when his youngest brother was born on September 30 1996, I was trying to cope with a new situation when ten months after Masoud was born ( my youngest son) then came my ex-parents in laws who were in there 70s and 80s. Now there are seven people in the family who are all leaning on me, am sure you can imagine how hard life was with my ex-husband, studying and working both full-time, not being around for help at all, my eight year old suffering from epilepsy and needed special care, two young boys under the age of three and two elderly people. So there is only me to look after seven people including myself, which you can imagine I could do only a little bit for everyone, not as enough as possible (Specially Mo who is now 2/3 years old who needs a lot of Mum and Dad to be around and paying attention instead he has to spend few hours a day looking after his little brother). And then because of that busy family situation mum and dad are having lots of fight and trouble and the fighting increase daily which ends up with a divorce when Mo was only nine. and now here he is angry aggressive, smoking cigarettes, smoking week, drinking alcohol, not accepting rules, not being honest, not settled, cant make a decision, is very moody, swearing one minute and happier than ever then next and yet i have to say he is the soft hearted person ever.

My Out-of-Control Teen


He is into the dark side, gay, doesn’t believe in God, believes in tarot, hoodoo, potions, palm readings and an assortment of other cult things...

I have a teen 17 now 18 coming in March and I’m writing because I have done “sending him to dad” at the first semester in high school. which was worse and now my son is home on weekends because he wants to finish high school there, and he is into the dark side, gay, doesn’t believe in God, believes in tarot, hoodoo, potions, palm readings and an assortment of other cult things, but besides this for the last 4-5 years he digressed in happiness, he wants nothing to do with us only what he needs, he is sarcastic, negative, rude, and hopeless, he capable of so much but has always had the problem fitting in, but I feel I’ve lost him, he’s been diagnosed as personality disorder by a psyche., goes to counseling, I think more bi-polar- and now has refused meds (resperdryl, Zoloft) Because they make him feel funny. We’re not laughing he hasn’t pursued a part-time job and so doesn’t get what growing up is, has ADHD this seems way out-can you refer me to something helpful-I’ve tried everything and if he refuses I’m lost and so is he.

My Out-of-Control Teen

...tried to choke me to death...

16 y/o son been in trouble with law for 2 years now/very verbally abusive to my mother, me and anybody else that makes him mad/has stole meds from house/severe drug use/punches holes in doors and walls/has escalated into physical violence in the last year or so... tried to choke me to death and older sister and my mom pried him off of me... i called the police and he in turn said he had to do it to get me off of him... i went to jail/all charges were dropped/month later had his older sister locked up/been in res. facility for 9 mo and has od 3 times and had several fights/will be released in 4 weeks and i am afraid he will try to call the cops on me again if he does not get his way/in need answers/i am scared.

My Out-of-Control Teen


I am really OVER INDULGENT in all of this...

We are a family of 4....Me, my wife,a son Dave (17) and a daughter Renée (15).

I am the bad guy.....demanding stuff and trying to keep them in check. My wife, well, she is the loving mother.....if I find things that could improve in my kids, she would always say things like....there only kids....he is just a is just a phase....they will grow out of ot...etcè It makes my relation with my wife with a lot of tension lately because we come from 2 different family.....mine was with the strap and very stricked...and her everything was ok. Now, she would tell me that '' look, I didnt turn bad and we were raised different then you''. Well, I agree. If I am pissed off at something thaT MY SON DOES OR DID, SHE WOULD ALWAYS TRY TO DIMINISH IT....TO THE POINT THAT If I took action, she seemed desapointed that I try to give a consequence to our kids. We don't see eye to eye on how to raise's hard for me to accept this...and it is driving us apart.We have been together for 29 years and married for 19.

Tks for hosting this site and thinking about us parents who seem to have lost control of our teen to the point where there is almost hate between him and I. Yep, I can't stand him and he can't stand me. It has been going on for a long time....since he was about 10...doing all kinds of things for him, being there for him even if he was desapointing me. Yes, I am sure I was wrong in many aspect. He now turns 17 this month and couldnt care less what he does....I think that when he will leave things could settle down a little in our house. He always talks back, always thinks I am fulll of it, he thinks he's the smatrtest of the family,won't EVER say he was wrong even with his friends. Now, don't get me wrong, he is not a bad drugs ( Yet ), maybe has a beer with his friends once in a while, but I don't think he is a very bad kid. But, he wants to rule in the family almost to the point where he is trying to raise us all.....really....umbearable. I did struggle physically with him before...a few smacks behind the head....but now, he is as tall then me ( 6'2"") and has been doing martial arts for 5 years now. He could kick the s***t out of me now if he wanted....but he never hit me before....even if he really wanted to before.

I will just tell you 1 thing that happenned this week and you will kind of understand how pissed off I am at my son and my Wife.

Dave my son, doesnt study very hard this year. He just received his report card and does not have good grades. We have been telling him to concentrate on his last year of high school so he can go to college. He is smart and would like to go in science. Well, not with those grades. So, he never talkes to me because he doent really have his way with, I overheard a conversation with his mom and I heard that the grades were just passing....57% in Math...when i went into the kitchen, I said my 2 cents that this was unacceptable and that it showes that he does really study. He started to say that he now realise it and that it is gona scared him a bit to have those grades.....even my wife was, having a boiling caracter, I told him that because he does not study or take this seriously that he would miss his martial art class for a month......well, hell broke loose....told me why, told me it is gona change, told me that this was stupid, told me that I was wrong in doing this....hitting walls, being pissed off....even my wife was almost on this with me. She went to his room to calm him down because he was crying litterally ( 17 ) saying to his mom that martial arts is his life and so, they were talking loud. Anyway, my wife comes out of the room and the first thing she says to me don't know how to talk to your son.......well, I looked at her straight in the eyes and said to her.....I dont want to hear this from you again, he is not nice with me, you take care of him.....

I was really upset at my wife...she didnt think all nof this would change things if we give him a consequence.....well, she went back into hyis room and they talked softly for about 30 min.

I talked to my wife the next day and asked her what happenned in there ....she told me that he realises that he has to put in more efforts....I said ok and then I said what about his martial art.......she then said, well, we talked about it and we cam to an understanding that he would continue it thill Christamas and then we would see. I said over road my or our decision without consulting me....I was very pissed off....I havent taled to my wife in 4 days now....feeling completly put aside of my son's life now. Of course, you can see that he can do whatever he wants with his mom.....I am tired of this.....everytime there is a disagreement with my wife, it is betwen my son and I...she is tired of this and so am I.....I feel that our marriage is in jeoperdy here because of all of this.

Your help is needed in all of this and this is why I have purchased your program. Now, I really want to step away because I am really OVER INDULGENT in all of this....and so is my wife I am sure. Now , she doesnt know that I just bought your tell you the thruth, I don't know how it could work if I am the only one doing, to tell her is out of the question. I am at the silent treatment stage with her and it does not bother me that much....but it is driving a wedge between us.....she thinks I am always wrong in dealing with my son cause we don't see eye to eye and she will always side with him. He can manipulate her...she has a very very big heart....

My Out-of-Control Teen


My daughter brought the police home on Monday...

My daughter brought the police home on Monday and they were ready to have a go at me for being the terrible parent that she portrays in her stories to others. The school won't support me and believe her. She has already said the magic words to the school, My Mum's crazy. She is 13 and a half year nine and in her first year of high school.

She knows I'm in the middle of my end of year tests and loves the attention she is getting on a regular basis from the school guidance counsellor who believes her and said the magic power words to me the stressed out single parent about the government social workers service. here they believe allegations and take peoples kids from them. My mother has already made false allegations in the past so it is all a mess. My friend will take her for one weekend but thats all. I am in the middle of my tests and can't study.

The police man found out that my daughter has no remorse and she has been referred to a youth officer.

I have to let my study go. That will have negative financial implications for me.

I don't want to speak to her anymore and everything I say gets repeated to the guidance counsellor with artful acting and additions.

I have already discovered she has been gameplaying in other areas deliberately hiding objects to confuse me and throwing things away so I have to replace them. She knew full well I couldn't afford that.She is also deliberately hiding rotten food in her room because she knows how important keeping a healthy home is to me.

She won't return the money she stole ($120) and is enjoying every minute of this. I don't know what to do.

She was put in handcuffs by the police officer, but I don't think she was really scared.

She is still stealing pens and pencils off other children because the school won't support me and trivialised it, believed she is innocent and that I'm crazy. She has no need for them they are just prettier than the ones she has and she has taken about twenty in a premeditated fashion this year.

I was totally humiliated having the police arrive at our flat with her room being searched for stollen goods and me being questioned also.

please can you help me, i have no idea of what to do, she is enjoying this and everything I have tried as a parent and every routine and every moral principle I have ever tried to teach her has been trodden on since she was five years old.
I had this staring me in the face for so long I had refused to see that she is behaving exactly the way my mother does. My mother is a psychiatric case.

My daughter has had symptoms of Add for years but only mild and I thought she had grown out of that, and I'm not in favour of drugging children with ritalin.
She has also been oppositionally defiant from an early age and after this weeks events I think she may have no conscience.

In the past whenever I do anything really nice for her she does something really bad to me. This time i had pre bought her christmas present, a big girls scooter.

My Out-of-Control Teen

Out-of-Control Adopted Child


I am so far enjoying reading your eBook and the associated web materials. While I am reading them, they make sense. In our case, we are finding some difficulties applying them properly, however.

Here is a quick rundown of our situation. Four months ago we adopted two older girls from Russia, age (now) 7 and 11. Small surprise, they come from a neglectful environment, with many of the standard elements – unstable environment, alcoholic mom, etc. Until 1 bit more than 1 year ago, they remained in this environment before having custody removed.

Physically they are in reasonably good shape, and FAS (at least the observable physical signs) is not evident, although it is safe to assume that there is some element of this around. The appear to be of generally normal intelligence, and they are (again, small surprise) quite resourceful and street smart.

From the beginning, Diana, the younger one (emotional age probably about 4 – 5) has had ongoing temper tantrums, but this to us does not seem too much out of the norm. Vika, however, is a changing picture. She was fine for the first 1.5 months. Then, one day I left on a short business trip, and she refused to go to school (ok, easily traced to separation anxiety, we are guessing). This has continued (refusing to go to school in the morning), although in each case we have delivered her to school, sometimes kicking and screaming. IN the last month or so, this behavior has spread to non-school related areas, in a pretty out of control situation. Spitting and attempted biting are common, and now the younger sister has learned all her techniques and is copying them to a T J

We are aware that in some cases attachment issues are often dealt with the opposite of the standard “ignore the kid” response, as the kids are essentially testing to you prove to themselves that, like all the others, you too will abandon them. However, with Vika, she actually seems quite attached, leaving us at times unclear on how to deal with these issues. Our current approach when a kid acts out is to “safe hold” the kid, keep them close, make eye contact if possible,etc – until they eventually cry, melt, and then they will cling on to you like there is not tomorrow (but… this can take 30 minutes – 1 hour for the full cycle). This is our default treatment method, meant to err on the side of “if in doubt, assume you have an attachment issue”.

Yet at the same time, it is hard to tell if we are making positive or negative progress.

There are several areas where we are having particular trouble determining how to act:

1. Finding appropriate consequences. To minimize stimulation, we have refrained from giving our kids millions of toys, etc. The do have television access and computer (not-online) access by permission, and these form somewhat effective consequences. We also give them $1 per day allowance during school days, generally linked to getting on the bus in the morning. But… beyond that, we find ourselves at a loss on what a good consequence is for them. The only thing we are not willing to take from them is they “main” doll, which I see as a security blanket…

2. Getting them to school – when a kid refuses to go to school, it seems all we can do is: a) apply a consequence, but none seem sufficiently compelling to them in the heat of battle, and b) safe hold. In many cases we are left with a struggling kid that is willing to throw child seats around in the car. Are there any other obvious actions we should be considering?

3. Beyond consequences, are we doing the right thing with “restrain, safe hold close, and wait”? IT can be quite a struggle at times. In case it is not obvious, the kids in this state will not voluntarily stay anywhere – left alone they are more likely to run outside in the winter in their underwear, etc.

My Out-of-Control Adopted Children


It has been difficult getting my husband on board...

Hi Mark,

I have joined your programme and am finding it very helpful. I would be lying if I said it hasn't been a struggle but I'm hanging in there.

It has been difficult getting my husband on board though. We both have very different parenting strategies and so far he hasn't been convinced, although he does back me up when I enforce rules and discipline. Our son really kicked off last night, my husband ended up shouting at him and, as you quite rightly say in your ebook, felt really guilty afterwards. I gave him your ebook last night, and he has been reading it, hopefully he will see how much sense it makes.

If I feel that I'm flagging I just watch your videos (especially "When you want something from your Child" and "Anger Management"), they remind me of the rules and give me the confidence to carry on. Sometimes it is so hard not to loose it with him and shout back, he just pushes and pushes me to the point where I feel I have no choice but to explode. I must admit, that I am not rising to the bait as often these days, and he hates it.

However, we do seem to have hit a wall at the moment, his will is definitely stronger than mine. I think it's because it's dark when he gets home from school and he can't go out. All he wants to do is sit in front of the TV, he hasn't been doing his homework and moans when we ask him to do his chores. Should we begin the programme again, or just carry on and adjust the rules and disciplines?

For last night's little performance, our son has a 3 day TV ban. He will get his TV back if he does his homework and chores every night.

Thanks for your help with this.

Kind regards


My Out-of-Control Teen


She has poor self-esteem, a negative outlook on life, and takes no responsibility for her lack of happiness or anything else...

Some background info: she is not completely wild: doesn't touch drugs (some social smoking and drinking but hasn't become a problem), does not steal from me or anyone else, not a criminal but nevertheless has some severe problems from my viewpoint. I am a single mother (never any father contact or involvement until a year ago when they started talking occasionally on the phone) and she is my only child. I was the "hero" growing up and she is the "scapegoat."

The specific problems I am dealing with are rudeness, not contributing to home care & not picking up after herself, being out very late and often not coming home at all, dishonesty, occasionally wearing too sexy clothes, and the biggest problem for me is hanging out with unethical and loser 'friends' that often treat her horribly (including her boyfriends). She has poor self-esteem, a negative outlook on life, and takes no responsibility for her lack of happiness or anything else.

She has repeatedly stated that she hates being home (she says it makes her depressed). She hates both our apartment itself and spending time with me at home and unless i complain and force her she is almost always somewhere else. She has never invited her friends home except the few times I made her and that was years ago. Our apartment is normal, clean and furnished with food, tv for videos and video games (no tv service) - that's not the issue. She says her friends hate me and think I'm crazy (even though I've only met 2 or 3 of them briefly). She says no one she knows has restrictions. This may be true as the kids she hangs out with are delinquents or close to it. She also says that every one she knows' parents buy them their own cars and give them everything they want. This is probably not true as many of her friends/acquaintances are just getting their driver license at 18 or 19 or still don't have it although there are some 'spoiled rotten' ones too. Her argument for years has been that I disrespect her by having rules and don't giver her anything a parent should. My argument back has been that her friends are losers and she shouldn't compare her situation to theirs and that if she was behaving ethically and respectably, I wouldn't be so restrictive.

She moved out with her boyfriend a couple months ago - that only lasted a month as they broke up but I had no control at all then. She works about 25-30 hours a week and dropped out of community college when she moved out saying she didn't need school to be successful or happy and that I don't know what makes her happy. She is back at home now and pays for her car payment, gas, clothing & entertainment.

Because she is much more independent than an under-18 child would be, I'm not sure what kind of rules I can reasonably ask of her and I don't know how to enforce them. Currently, her rules include:

1. curfew of 11pm on weekdays and 1am on fri/sat
2. introducing me to all her friends and giving me their phone numbers
3. keeping me informed about where she is and who she is with
4. spending time with the family (me) including frequent family dinners, and other things that we arrange ahead of time
5. taking on half the household work (there is only 2 of us)
6. being productive (work, school or some community involvement)
7. being honest and respectful to me
8. being in school and getting good grades (A's & B's)
9. taking care of her stuff (bedroom and car mostly)

Needless to say, these are not happening. Partly I'm not being explicit about our family time and household requirements and partly their just not getting enforced. But she argues and disagrees with most of them too. Number 1 she is just relentless about how wrong it is. 4 she says she is never home so isn't making the mess. 2 & 5 she says I'm just a control freak and think I'm god judging what makes her happy and what constitutes good people to hang out with, etc....

She says she doesn't want to tell me what is going on in her life because I will nag her, rant about the jerks she is going out with / hanging out with, or especially when she is younger, get involved to help her. She used to throw fits when I said I would offer talk to her teacher about someone who mistreated her at school or talk to a kid's parent or anything like this. ( I think now this is because there was dishonesty in her description of things to me - she has seen herself as a victim for a long time).

That is pretty much the situation and background here. So far your descriptions are spot on for our situation, especially for the more authoritarian type parenting, and I have definitely gone back and forth between the passive and aggressive responses. I guess the three main questions I have are:

1. What kind of rules can I reasonably have for a 19 year old with quite a bit of independence?


2. What are appropriate and workable means of enforcing them?

and very important to me,

3. How can I help her choose better friends and stop hanging out with the low-life?

I don't know what I could take away from her for disciplinary enforcement. She bought her ipod, cell phone (I pay the bill) and car, internet access and video games she could get at a friends house so I don't think taking these away would be workable. Grounding seems inappropriate for her age and probably not enforceable either. What do you recommend?

One last thing, she doesn't like to be hugged or touched. I've had to force her most of her life but now that she's older she gets really nasty when she is mad at me and aggressively refuses any affection.

I feel like this is the last chance I have to help her have better self-esteem, a more positive outlook and future, and for us to get along and be happy together.

My Out-of-Control Adult Child

ODD Daughter?

My 12-year-old daughter has not been diagnosed ODD, in fact, no one has ever given her a diagnosis, but she has learning problems, memory recall problems, and anxiety. Her anxiety is at the root of a lot her behavior problems. We have a problem with her lying a lot, from small stories she makes up kind of like daydreaming, to whoppers that would get other kids in trouble if they were true. She usually lies to avoid looking bad or to avoid consequences.

This morning she yelled at me about going to church, "I REFUSE to go and that's that." My husband came to me and said that getting her to church wasn't worth the battle, and I got so angry I left the house for several hours. Now I'm back home and have given my daughter a big list of chores that will probably take her the rest of the day.

But I have little hope that giving her chores will alter her behavior. We're tried grounding, taking away privileges, taking away video-watching (we don't allow tv shows)... nothing works.

On the positive side, she does her chores willingly, contributes to the family, behaves very well at school, loves her 3-year-old brother but fights with him sometimes.

My husband is unemployed right now and we are having an extremely stressful time financially. I wish we could just skip a dinner out to afford your program, but dinners out are a thing of the past in our household right now. So before I make the choice to pay for your program, I need to know whether you think it will help us, or whether it is aimed at kids with more severe behavior problems than my daughter.

My Out-of-Control Daughter

He is just one confused young man...

My Husband and I are Carers for our Grandsons are Reece (8) and Dylan (13). It is our Grandson, Dylan, that we have the concern about. He is approaching 14 and is showing some delinquency and irrational behavior. His parental background is unstable/depressive/drug addict mother and alcoholic father (our son). His mum left when he was 9, but he was dragged around to shelters and in and out of foster care up to and after that age. My son won them through court some five years ago and has looked after them until Department of Community Services removed the boys due to physical abuse related to his drinking. (My husband and I lived 4 hours away at the time and did not know of the circumstances.)

My husband and I now have the boys full time for two years now. I gave up work last year to care for them full time. Dylan has always been a kind and caring kid, but the teenage years have caught up fast and he is just one confused young man. With his background he must have loads of issues and I am trying to get teen/adolecant counseling in our area, so far to no avail.

We are in touch with Community Services re the issues, but they are so flat out, we cannot get an appointment.

Our concerns are for Dylan and want him to come through this as unscathed as possible, and to experience a happy adult life. We have been honest with the boys re - situations relating to his parents, and Dylan has seen for himself the damage. We relay the lessons of alcohol and drugs in our talks with them, and our family is the perfect example. So we are just after a little help to hopefully make things better and more harmonious for us all. (my husband is 70 and I am 60, and this is retirement!!!)Reece to date seems remarkably unscathed and has a great insite and adaptability to the situation.

I have a daughter in Sydney, who is just the most wonderful girl, who is a rock for us and the boys, and our other son lives in Tokyo and has been overseas working and living for 10 years. We live in a country area about 4 hours from our daughter, so our support is limited, and as our friends are our age, so friend/family/support contact is limited. So we feel a little trapped.

My Out-of-Control Teen

I was called a fucking c**t ...

I am writing to you in desperation, sitting at my desk at work, not able to concentrate on anything but thoughts of my daughter H___ flying round in my head.

The weekend just gone has to be the worst on record, a typical scenario:

H___ has stayed over at Josie's on Friday night with permission, not a problem. However it was agreed during the week that we would spend Saturday and also Saturday evening together. I waited in all day Saturday and there was no sign of H___! I tried to call her mobile and it was on voice mail. She turned up later that evening at about 19:30hrs with Josie and only because she had popped into my mothers prior to arriving at mine and told my mother she would be staying at Josie's and my mother replied by saying that she needed to ask my permission and come and see me.

However when she arrived at my home, I WAS TOLD she is staying at Josie's to which I replied it would be nice to ask my permission. She replied I don't need to ask you anything etc .. I can do what I want. I pushed out of my own front door and locked out! When I eventually got back in my home I asked Josie to leave politely and said that H___ would not be staying over because of her rudeness. Josie left. I then told H___ she would be staying with me and she tried to leave, so I stopped her so she picked up the dog lead and started hitting me with it so we ended up having pretty much a brawl in the hallway.

I was called a fucking c**t, and a prostitute and told by H___ that because I have f**ked up my own life I am trying to control hers. This went on for hours and I tried to switch of and not react but she was relentless then trying to climb out of the window. I began to get very frighted as she was out of control and I called the Police. After all of this the Police leaving etc she put on her PJs and went to bed.

She woke yesterday morning ready for round 2! Saying she was going to Josie's that I am not her parent and she can do what she wants.

My sister arrived drove her to Josie's to collect her stuff and took her back to my mothers, who lives next door.

After splitting up with my partner I moved back to my mothers where myself and H___ lived. I left after approx 5 yrs ago but H___ has never settled in the flat as she prefers my mothers house (she has a double room etc and can get away with what she wants, and my mother feels its like a competition to win H___ over). How can I get to grips with H___ when she is permanently at my mothers! My mother has had enough of her rudeness also and after years of rowing between my mother and I over H___ we are now beginning to stand together. I am a single parent, working as a construction manager in a male dominated industry and currently undertaking a degree, struggling to pay the bills. I have sacrificed alot for H___ and given her absolutely everything I now realise this was wrong. I wanted her to grow up with family around her not with just me to stimulate her and now I feel that it has all bitten me in the backside.

H___ is now at my mothers thinking that it is another battle won and she has got away with her behaviour this weekend and will hang in there until she falls out with my mum and then will seek cover in my house with me. I bought you ebook last night and read over it. For the 1st weeks assignment I can do this but how do I deal with what has happened this weekend do I just let it go? At the moment I physically cannot, I can't even bring myself to look at her even though I love her so much and wonder how has all this happened, what did I do so wrong.

It is her 13th birthday next Saturday I don't even feel like buying her a present and normally I would be in debt just to give her everything she wants although she is not grateful for anything and is quite rude to other members of the family if she feels it is a 'cheap' present. She will never write anyone a card for their birthday and wont even wrap a present, she does not chores. My mother runs round her and then she expects me to do the same and I do as I want to make her happy (which sounds pathetic as I am not helping her to be independant).

What do I do now. She is in my mothers how do I deal with her discipline. What should I do about her birthday? I don't think I should launch straight into the 1st set of assignments and let this go as it is too big an issue to have Police round my flat.

H___ is fine in school, she has never been in any trouble, I know in comparison I should be grateful but if I don't sort this now it could lead to something worse. I feel like I have failed big time as a parent when all I ever wanted was to be a good parent and work and be a good role model I guess i'm trying to be the super mom.

Please help I should be out on site as we are handing over the building and I can't think about anything I feel TOTALLY DEPRESSED.

My Out-of-Control Teen


She fights with me about going to school...

15 year old daughter ...she fights with me about going to school, and i just can't take it anymore. i have mad deals with her, i do feel like a failure as a parent and this has not happened with any of my other kids. and i don't want it to happen with the others.

i am a single mom of 10 children 8 of them still live at home. and if i can't get my daughter to go to school, social services is going to come and take my children, and i can't have that because my kids are my life... i am not working right now and am on a very strict budget ...i really need the help in this situation PLEASE HELP ME.

a mother at her wits end...

My Out-of-Control Teen

Out of control 15yr old boy...

I have an out of control 15yr old boy.

He has ran away from home stolen from me and others as well as Merchants.

He has physically abuse me by hitting me spitting at me and vandalizing my car and house holds items.

He as been kicked out of regular high school and now attending non public School.

He has been arrested for violating curfew.

I have put him in counseling.

I am even thinking about residential treatment for him.

He is a very disrespectful kid and I just don’t know what to do.

Please help me ...I need help.

My Out-of-Control Teen


She is a compulsive and extreme liar...

I'm a single mother of a 15 year old daughter. She is very bright, poised, articulate and academically ambitious. She does chores around the house when asked, is engaged with things at school like her marketing class, volunteering to help with little kids, the school newspaper, student council, 6 summers in the local sailing program, junior counselor at a local arts camp, and last spring decided herself to be confirmed in the Catholic church (we are Protestant, but not active in a church. She went k--8 to a parochial school). All in all, things seemed good.

The problem turns out to be compulsive and extreme lying.


Two years ago, I decided to review the phone numbers on her cell phone bill. There was one number that was on there every night for 7 months. Sometimes 10pm, sometimes 11pm, and talking for upwards of an hour or more.

I asked her who's number that was and she quickly said Mary Conlon (one of her best friends).

However something didn't sit right with me. So I called the phone number. A boy answered and I said "Oh wrong number, who's this?" He said "Dan".

I confronted her with this and she said Mom, he's just a friend and we talk. She said he has a girlfriend anyway. I said Camilla, if you are going through a hard time and need to talk, I'm here. The calls stopped.

One year ago, she started public high school, after graduating from a K-8 parochial school.

I asked her one day, are you on Facebook? No, mom.

A month or two later I decided to troll on Facebook, turns out she indeed was on there.

I said to her Camilla, you lied to me, why? "I don't know".

I told her I was disappointed that she would lie to me. Then I made a deal with her. She could give me access to her Facebook page or she could delete it. She opted for the latter (I checked and it is deleted).

Last Labor Day I was out of town for 2 days and 2 nights. Usually she would go stay with her father, who lives a few miles away. I am not away often, maybe once a year for a few days. This time she said "mom, I think I can handle being home myself this time". I said you know, I think you can too. The rule has always been that no one is allowed in our home when I am not there. Furthermore, I told her that NO ONE was to know that I am away.

I thought I knew her friends - good kids - our home was always open to them and they knew they could have all the soda and pizza they could handle. I thought it was a good way for me to get to know what kind of kids she was friends with. And they were terrific. The boys and the girls, sometimes 10 of them, hanging out in the den, playing GameCube, board games, laughing, never foul language, always good humored fun.

Well, when I returned from my being out of town...I could tell the house had been trashed and then an attempt was made to clean it all up. She told me "these kids came down the lane in cars, I don't know how they knew I was alone. I told them there is no party here and they wouldn't leave so I told them to stay outside". Still I believed her, but when I saw a burn mark on my nightstand(!) and all of my sheets and bedspread had been washed, the den carpet was wet, the front door was broken, two Bacardi rum caps in the garbage (they thought they took all the garbage with them), I flipped out.

I slapped her face (wrong, I know), I told her she was grounded and how dare she trash the house that I had worked so hard to buy. I took away her cell phone and her computer access for 2 weeks.

Then a month after that incident, in early October, she was supposedly staying overnight at her friend Julia's house on a Saturday night. Dumb me, I should have called Julia's mom who I've know since Camilla was 4 and verified.

The Monday afternoon following the "sleepover", I get a phone call from the police asking if I knew what had happened on Saturday night. Evidently there was a rip-roaring rave at a local kid's house - parents out of town, 1/4 of the school was there. Police were called at 12:30 and found booze and drugs inside. Camilla insisted they call her father - not me. He picked her up, she stayed at HIS house and HE left it up to her to tell me about it(!) which she did not. Turns out one of the kids threw a rock through the back of the police cruiser, so it understandably escalated where Camilla, even though she wasn't holding a beer, and her Dad says she did not show signs of having been drinking, is being charged with a minor in possession of alcohol.

What a nightmare. She is grounded again, I cannot trust her. If her lips are moving she is lying.

Out of desperation, I read her journal. She alludes to promiscuity with boys, although I can't specifically tell if she has actually had sex. Last weekend, still grounded, she lied to me again and since she had been mumbling about maybe she should go live with her father for awhile (he lives alone), I said pack a bag and call your father because I can't take it anymore. I yelled and screamed at her (wrong, I know).

I have called her father every day, telling him not to let her out of his sight. She has not been anywhere and he seems to be doing a good job of it, but then if he hid the above from me, would he tell me about any more incidents?

We will have our first counseling session on Monday, the three of us, to satisfy the "Youth Diversion Program" because of the arrest. She has to go 8 times. I am willing to go to all sessions if necessary too. I picked the therapist on referral from a friend, who says this guy shares our conservative world view, and I already like the initial phone conversations we had.

I have always tried to keep a dialog going with her, that all of her things are privileges and can be easily taken away. That I will trust her until given reason not to. That most boys want one thing at this age from a girl and she should guard her innocence. To stay focused on school and do the best she can. That 40% of kids graduate from high-school with their virginity intact. That if she ever considered going on birth control (not that I condone her dating, I don't), would she come talk to me. That if she is ever anywhere that gets out of hand, to call me and I will come get her.

My problem now is, whether she stays with her father or comes back here, how do we let her out of the house again??? I read in her journal that last summer when I dropped her off at the local annual carnival, she and her friends had beers in the porta potty. When she went to see a play at school one night, she left during the intermission with a boy and made out on the field, missing most of the 2nd act.

I want to lock her in a closet till she's 18...

I cannot trust her. She is a compulsive and extreme liar. Even embellishing the lies:

While I was out of town during Labor Day, "I cleaned the house, you'd be so proud of me"

The morning after the rave party, I said

"how was Julia's?"

"Oh, ok, pretty boring, it would have been more fun if we had done something like gone to a movie. We just sat around and talked."

"Would you like some french toast for breakfast?"

"No thanks, Julia's mom made us pancakes"

I would like to move on to a "trust but verify" approach, i.e. Calling parents where she is going to make sure they are home. But in the case of the carnival or the play (see examples above), I can't verify anything. Get a breathalizer?

My Out-of-Control Daughter

We are trying to un-due all the ill-feelings and behaviours of past...

Thank You Mark!

Finding your link in Google could be the one thing that will save this child.

Background and Introduction:

I am Rylies' Grandmother. She is 13 on Dec. 1st. This is the third time she has been removed from her family home. She is the eldest of four children born to my youngest daughter: I have an older daughter with two children of her own. I helped 'deliver' Rylie as her Mother was a teen and resided with me until Rylie turned 2.

Rylie and I share a very strong bond. Over the years, my daughter found it necessary to involve the Children's Aid Society here in Canada to intervene with her 'at risk' child. Frankly, I was shocked! After several attempts at psychologist therapy, numerous drugs, and the entire gamut of social interventions, Rylie was placed with the children's aid in a foster home, far away from her family. Parents took classes and went into extreme scrutiny. Rylie came home, Mom got pregnant and baby brother (now 5), was born. Shortly thereafter, Rylie was sent to a residential treatment and assessment facility for several months. When she came back home, Mom got pregnant with little sister (now 21/2), and all was well until Mom decided to again send Rylie away. She spent a short term with another foster Mom - local this time - and returned home to find Mom was now pregnant with their fourth child, another sister, now 8 months old. Rylie was again forced to leave the family home and this time I insisted she come stay with me and her step-grandfather.

Now we are trying to un-due all the ill-feelings and behaviours of past and intervene at this crucial stage in Rylies' life. She is beautiful, capable of manipulating just about anyone, and very defiant. Negative attention is about the only thing she knows and has learned how to get it and deal with it when she wants. Her behaviour is not that extreme, but non-the-less, inappropriate in social interactions with peers and authority. She needs stability and security and she needs to feel wanted, loved and to gain a sense of belonging in the big picture and the little one. I'm working fast and furiously to catch up on parenting in today's high paced society. I still work. I'm 55, my husband 45. We've been together for 17 years.

I've downloaded and read the lst week's lesson and am very pleased with what I've seen so far. Can't wait to get into the rest but I am showing restraint. The Senior Public School I have Rylie enrolled in is well aware of Rylies' past, her abilities and the tasks at hand. They work with me daily to assist and ensure Rylie's safety and development - socially and intellectually as a progressing student. I'll be sharing some of your information with them. They are great, as I feel you will be as well. We have a great network and a very interesting project to work on. She's 13 going on 19 and emotionally 9 or 10.

So far, I've found encouragement in your teachings. I now feel that I have been on the right track in my thinking, but definitely need the tools you provide. I am sill a quick study. I know I have a lot left to learn and I think I've now found a inspiring teacher in you.

Thank You so much for being there and doing the work you do. I look forward to sharing successes.

Yours truly,


Online Parent Support

We are the indulgent parents big time...

We are the indulgent parents big time. Today I am sad and angry. I am always afraid the punishment won't fit the crime.

Our boy who is 16 got his license. We don't help with a car until 17. We moved out into the country and although it isn't neccessary he got his license at 16. The deal was that he would pay the insurance difference of driving our vechicle. Also that his grades had to be a C average to be able to have the truck for the weekends and going to work.

He had a job all summer working full time. He basically blew most of the money on stuff. That was okay with me as a learning lesson. He works on and off now because it is seasonal.

Right away he starts getting all D and F's. Granted he has an IEP at school and struggles. WE don't think he puts in any effort though at home. No homework or studying to be seen. We even turned off our tv, except for basic channels. Limit the computer also. We talked to his school and they said he is capable of a C average. So that is what we said he needed to uphold. I have to say that my husband has given in to him with the truck, which makes it frusterating.

Today, in a nice manner I told him if he wanted to go out tonight that he would have to clean up his room. Closet and all. It is always a disaster with clothes etc. This is the only thing he has to do, maybe once a week. He won't do chores much, except for mowing and snowblowing, outside stuff etc.

He asked if he could have the truck. I said no. Haven't seen his grades and that we go off of two week progress reports. Otherwise he says I have all C's, every couple of days. I want to see consistancy. He seemed okay with it.

Next thing I know, he is gone. Not with the truck, but with his older brothers car. I call him on his cell phone and he is as calm as can be. He said he was running errands for his brother. To me it doesn't matter. He left without notice, took his brothers car and acts as if it is no big deal. I told him to come home. That we would talk and he would have consequences.

I want to follow through. My husband wants me to write everything up that I think we should do. The thing is, he will blame me later if it doesn't work. Because I am too strict or he just let him do what he wants anyway. In the mean time I have a husband that is pissed and angry at his kids all the time. All he says is that "I'm not doing shit for them". But never follows through. He doesn't want conflict. He avoids his kids, he is pissed, they are pissed and defiant.

I am probably to blame, somewhere in the picture.

What do we do? We already took the car away and he just takes one. I say, we don't allow him to drive our cars until he is 17 and can pay for one himself next summer. No matter how much we are inconvienced. I say, we don't take him where he wants to go on a whim. Or take him to his job. He screwed up, so why should we be at his beck and call. My husband says we should still take him to work etc. Yet, he hates doing it, etc. I am at a loss. HELP!

My Out-of-Control Teen

Teenage boy has been brain washed by father...

My sister is in a desperate situation, is this book any help for a mum with a teenage boy of 15 who has been brain washed by his father nearly all his life, he has been told time and time again that his mother doesnt love or care for him, finally after many years of physical and mental abuse she has found the courage to divorce her husband, only to now feel she has lost her eldest son forever. He is filled with hate and anger and seems to blame his mother for everything, he bully's her and has no respect for her at all. His father wants him to go and live with him but my sister fears the worse as he will be left to just do as he pleases as his father works long hours and what time he is not working he is in the pub. His father encourages his bad behaviour and treats him like an adult rather than a child, he hardly goes to school and when he does he doesnt do anything. Recently he's argued with my sister causing damage to the home and leaving my sister devastated, he has gone to stay with his dad and she feels she's lost him forever and doesnt no how to approach him as he's not made any contact with her. Can you please help, can you please, please not make this a money making scheme we are desperate and this is peoples lives in your hand, she doesnt have much money as she is now a single not working parent struggling to make ends meet and feed her other two sons and still being kept within her husbands control and constant threats. If your program is for the less extreme situations then fair enough but i don't want to give my sister anymore disappointments i don't think she could cope with it and it could push her over the edge.

My Out-of-Control Teen


He has recently had a "brush" with the law...

I am the mother of an 18 year old boy who is a senior in high school. My son resides with my husband and myself full time as his father is located on the other side of the country. My husband and I are very concerned about my son. He has recently had a "brush" with the law and does not seem very concerned about the potential consequences. We have tried all that we know to do but I feel like I am at my wits end. I have asked my son's father to help but that does not seem likely. We would appreciate any guidance that you could provide or a point in the right direction on where to help locate some resources. My son has had problems in school (ADD), with drugs, lying and seemingly refusing to grow up and take responsibilities for his actions. He is involved in graffiti as a form of expression and is now knowingly breaking the law to do this.

My son is a very talented young man who wishes to pursue a career in art. He does display anger at times but primarily frustration.

My Out-of-Control Teen


I was in the middle of a 'melt down' with my son...

I was in the middle of a 'melt down' with my son. Brandon is 17 years old. And he is really a very good kid this has been the first huge problem I have had with him. Anyway, his school called and said he had been truant for the third time ... they were going to give him a detention but next time they would suspend him. So when I got home from work I went to his room sat on the bed and asked what was going on ... he didn't have a answer or didn't want to talk about it so I grounded him for two weeks (I know now ... big mistake!!! )

...The next night was Halloween and he had a party to go to and he asked if he could start his grounding the next day ... I said that it didn't work that way sorry ... we got into an argument ... he left and went to the party anyway. Before leaving I told him that he had better not disobey me or there would be consequences ... but he left anyway. So I went to his room, unhooked his computer (which I bought him for christmas last year) and moved the hard drive into my bedroom closet, unhooked his TV (which I bought him a few years ago for his birthday) and with some difficulty moved that to my bedroom closet, and left his playstation (which he bought with his own money) but left a note telling him not to hook it up to any other TV in the house. I got up the next morning to find the note on the floor in the hallway and the playstation hooked up to the TV in the loft.

Everyday for the past 6 days he has argued with everyone in the house, called his sister a bitch, almost got into a fist fight with his older brother (who he normally treats like a god) and has told his stepfather to fuck off and when I told him that was unacceptable he said "fuck you mom" and he has left the house 3 out of the 6 nights in a huff and comes home around 12:30 or 1:00 and has threatened on 4 separate occasions to go stay with his dad ... which he knows pushes my buttons. The whole entire house it at wits end ... my husband has threatened to leave if I don't get tougher with him ... but I'm thinking that I pulled out the big guns too soon and now I don't know if I should be back stepping. The kid is literally climbing the walls and to be perfectly honest his behaviour is so uncharacteristic I know I need to pull back but I don't know how. I was thinking if I said to him if he finds a part time job (something I've been bugging him to do since he finished his summer job) that I will consider letting up on the grounding ... or if he paints the garage ... or something to that effect.

My Out-of-Control Teen

My daughter has fallen off the edge...

The urgency I carry in my heart today comes with my teenage daughter’s safety in question. My daughter has fallen off the edge and I didn’t see it coming, in my mind I thought we had turned a corner and were headed to a better ground. Not so, reality shows me that she is in danger more than ever with her choices of “crowd”, activities, and secret life. A story far too long in description to write via email but only an “apparent” short journey in time of 18 months. At present my “gut” feeling and suspicion says she is in debt either for drugs or prostitution, I cannot get beyond the “WHY” and “HOW” did we land here on this ugly side of life.

My Out-of-Control Teen

I have found pot seeds under his bed...

My son is 18 years old. I found some cash in his room, laying in plain sight. It was about 340 dollars. I confronted him about it, fearing that he may be stealing or selling drugs. He came up with with two stories, both of which I highly doubt but are possible. I have found pot seeds under his bed several months ago and he has stolen money from me and his mom in the past. We haven't missed any lately and there hasn't been any other evidence of drug use.

My Out-of-Control Teen

I feel so depressed with absolutely no light at the end of the tunnel...

My name is Tina and I have a big problem. My son, Josh, seems to be getting more and more out of control.

He was diagnosed with ADHD in 2004 and is currently on Concerta XL, Omega 3 oils and vegetable supplements. He isn't a bad child but he seems completely unable to control himself and I am so afraid for his future. He hasn't had a brush with the law and doesn't get into a lot of trouble at school....

I am at my wit's end... I just don't know what to do anymore. Josh's Dad walked out when he was 4&1/2 and there has been significant fallout from this event.

I am so confused; Josh was the second of prophetic Joshua triplets born into our Church but all I see is pain and fear for the future.

I feel so depressed with absolutely no light at the end of the tunnel. This may sound melodramatic but I feel like my heart has been broken.

My Out-of-Control Teen


I am constantly walking on egg shells with her...

I have just come across your website by accident and Arianna ticks 7 out of 8 of the boxes for OPS. She is so lovely when she's lovely but I am constantly walking on egg shells with her as she can turn at any moment, often I have no idea what has set her off. She shouts and swears at me on a regular basis. We are all so fed up with the shouting, the temper tantrums, her verbal abuse and her constant refusal to comply. She is always at odds with her 3 older siblings and does all she can to embarrass and annoy them.

My Out-of-Control Teen

He sees nothing wrong with smoking marijuana...

Our 16 year old son is using/abusing marijuana about 5 times a week. He started using when he was 14 years old.

We have sent him to an Addiction Counsellor who says he can't help him unless he wants to quit.

I have bought books and discussed drug use with his school counsellor and other parents.

We have a rule no drugs or drug paraphenalia on our property or in our house
Our son gets stoned at lunch hours (he's in Grade 11) with his many friends
He has a part-time job which he likes and he seems to be doing OK at school
He has chores at home which he is responsible about and is usually cooperative
He gets himself up with the alarm every day, showers and gets his own breakfast
I pack him a huge, nutritious lunch each day.

He is a kind and passive individual who sees nothing wrong with smoking marijuana.

My Out-of-Control Teen

Shall I tell my son to find his own place when he turns 18...

Shall I tell my son to find his own place when he turns 18 in January if he
refuses to go for counseling for family relationship problem. My son is in
grade 12. I am a single mother raising him alone till now.

Or should I not kick him out and should I keep him in the house as long as
he wants to stay and try something else with him? Now that something else
can be your program that I have just discovered today.

Here is the current situation:

My son wrote nearly a few ten lines of cursing me language in his room
yesterday on his mirror, TV, papers hung on his wall, light switch, any
items that have plastic surfaces so that he can write with a felt pen...
Everything starts with, tell me to die, I sold him to jail, he hates
JING! and No respect, No privacy and so on. He knocked his couch chair
over... He laid a bottle of alcohol on the floor. Standing in his room, I
was feeling intimidated and shaking. However, my tears and anger have gone
sometime ago...

The trigger this time is I removed his marijuana from his room after I let
him know that I smelled it in the house and waited for a day for him to take
it out himself, but he didn't. We just started family mediation last
Thursday as the first session together and he said "the no drug and alcohol
at home rule would be not a problem for him". On the way home, he brought
the drug home. He had not have the trouble with it since July. When I
removed the drug on the weekend, he wrote: 3 lines only --Fuck Christians.
Fuck your rules. Fuck YOU. Then when I did not give him lunch money on
Monday which would be for 3 days as the consequence that has been, he wrote
the nearly hundred lines of abusive languages yesterday.

I talked the family mediator last night and she suggested me to apologize to
my son for invading his privacy and admit that was complete my fault to make
him that angry and we will work something out. In contrast my instinct plus
other advise is to demand him to see a family relationship counselor or he
needs to find his own place in January.

What would a working course of action for me to take this time if nothing
has worked in the past? The mediator would call my son today for this
emergency situation happened last night. Me and my son will see her again
this Thursday as scheduled. I need to have a direction of which way to go
and put it out in the meeting.

To give you a little background about my son for the past two years:

The counselor said she has never seen such an angry kid before; she sees my
son is deeply hurt inside and he is very manipulative.
My son started using alcohol heavily when he was 15 and a half, started
marijuana shortly after and then has used both of these with the money he
worked part time.

He stays out at night ignoring the curfew.

January this year, triggered by marijuana, he got physical with me and I
pressed the charge with the court and as a result of it, he was kept outside
home for two and half months. He returned home and things did not improve
very much. However, in the last two months he was improving dramatically
with his behaviors, but turned backwards all of sudden which I believe is
caused by his failing in school and he may not graduate. He refuses help
with school work though.

Things you described-- strong willed and does not comply with any rules and
requests belong to my son. And I believer I've tried everything too. Even my
son told the mediator that his mom has been trying, trying and trying...

My Out-of-Control Teen