Online Parent Support Chat

13.8.08

I’m just driving him nuts w/my rules...

I’m a recently divorced educated working mother. I now have custody of my 17 year old son – who wanted to live w/his father – but I was awarded custody. My son is on probation (should be getting off any day now) for possession of drug paraphernalia at school, and openly admits to drinking now. He’s not being drug/alcohol tested as part of probation. My son says his father drank when he was young (but the drinking age was 18 back then) and it’s better than doing drugs. He knows I won’t allow this in my house – I “used” to be moderately passive in parenting – basically I gave him the rope to hang himself. Now, he says I can’t control him 24x7 and he’s leaving if I put restrictions on him. Many of his friends from my middle to middle-upper class neighborhood have not graduated from the A-rated High School in FL he attends, and have left home already.

Since I’ve regained custody (12/07), his grades improved from mostly Fs to mostly Bs and he did get a job. He was paying ½ of his phone that he just got in May ‘08 (but recently lost his job last week because the business shut down.) He has a learners permit – but doesn’t drive. So my scenario is I have a kids that’s “doing better” than he was – but still not good. As he explains it, he’s “a lot” better, and he also explains, “I got in Honors classes and have done some of my summer reading - even w/a 2.3 GPA.” - BUT, he’s not ready to fix all of his vices. Technically, I haven’t “caught” him – so I don’t even know when to “punish” him – and he, like in the video, thinks he deserves credit for his honesty.

He sees himself as a giver and I’m just driving him nuts w/my rules (like I said – I’m relatively passive – so the rules are the basics.) He had a friend stay over last night, and I “think” they were up to no good. I was in the yard this morning and he came walking around the side of the house with a gym bag and backpack and he told me he wanted to see how the grass was growing back there. – Weird and not likely.

My Out-of-Control Teen

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