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Tips for getting a kid back on track

posted 8 years 3 months ago
I love my son to death, but his focus is just off and it is hurting him badly. I hate to put it this way but it seems that he doesn't care about anything at all. He's not depressed, nor does he have any home problems. My fiance and I are a very loving couple and we do our best to include family time in our routine at least once a week. We are very involved in his school work and home life, but it doesn't help. He gets into trouble at least once a week at school and it's causing the schools to think he is just a damaged child that cannot be helped. I feel so bad for him and want to help him, but without therapy and medications. Does anyone else experience this now or in the past? What can my fiance and I do to get our son back on track so that he can grow to his highest potential?

posted 8 years 2 months ago
Is he a teenager? Sounds like my son, except the "getting in trouble at school" part- but honestly, my son is probably just sneakier than yours lol. Really, all you can do is wait for hormones to even out. If you feel you need to do something, have you tried punishing him for getting in trouble at school? He needs to know it's unacceptable. Or are you more of a "Positive Reinforcement" Parent? Try taking him out to dinner at his favorite restaurant (or figure out a cheaper option) when he does well.
I feel you though. Parenting teenagers is never easy. I'll take the terrible twos over the terrifying teens any day!

posted 8 years 2 months ago
Fiance? Could your relationship be bothering him? Not that he doesn't like your fiance, but maybe that he's not his father bothers him, even subconsciously? How is his relationship with his biolological father? Any other children in the house? Have you talked to him, to see if anything is on his mind.. maybe with friends or a girl or.. gosh, it could be any number of things bothering a preteen/teen. I wouldn't suggest punishment though, school is punishment enough lol.. it will only add resentment to the mix which will just feed the problem and start a growing wedge between you. Now more than ever it's critical to keep his trust and get in his head to help him figure this out. So much luck Smile

posted 8 years 2 months ago
The thing that really stuck out for me when reading this, RavenLily, is that you said "he's not depressed." But research has shown that we often don't *know* when others are depressed. In fact, if it's something like severe clinical depression, the person suffering will usually do their best to hide it so that we *don't* know.

Could you maybe find more family time than the once a week you mentioned? We do family time of *some* kind, even if it's just a dinner together, every day. I'm not sure I could handle once a week, and I know it wouldn't work for my daughter that way.

All this, of course, is just my two cents so feel free to give change, but I do know that getting into trouble so often at school is often a cry for help even if it's nothing more than "notice me!"

posted 8 years 2 months ago
You know your child better than anyone else. If your child is acting out at school there must be a reason. Is he bored? Is there a learning disability? Could it be ADHD? Does he have friends at school? Has the school done any sort of testing? I would talk to your pediatrician and discuss what the school is telling you. How about his diet? I would try eliminating food dyes and adding Omega 3's supplements. What is his self esteem like? Hopefully you can get to the bottom of this. Best of luck.

posted 8 years 2 months ago
It sounds like you have a lot on your plate. Trying to figure out what is wrong with your child can be very frustrating. There is never a clear cut indicator that it is one thing or another as signs and symptoms can be interchanged into a lot of different reasons for your son's behavior. It depends on what is going on in his school life, home life, friends or no friends, teachers, and the list can go on. If talking to him about his behavior and what he thinks is wrong gets you nowhere then I would maybe talk to the school or his teacher. Sometimes they have insight into what they may think is happening. If all else fails, seek advice from his doctor. Are you absolutely opposed to therapy? Sometimes talking to someone not close to you is easier than talking to a parent or someone else in the family. I hope you find the answers you need.

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