My son is almost 15. I need some creative discipline for this age. Any Ideas?

Gena - posted on 10/15/2009 ( 48 moms have responded )

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My son started high school this year. He can never seem to make it home on time. He doesn't do his school work. When I ask him his standard answer is "I don't know". I have grounded him, taken things away, made him do Saturday school and write sentences. I really need some creative effective ideas to make him get a clue. Any suggestions?

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Theresa - posted on 10/21/2009

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It doesnt sound like you need creative ideas for discipline. It sounds like you need to re-educate him. He has lost respect for himself and you (it sounds like he has) I have four teenagers and still spank them when needed. Sometimes the hardest thing to do is to get it into their heads that we don't want to make their lives miserable, they are doing it to themselves. All three of my teen boys went through a 'stadge' just like it sounds your son is going through. I made sure there wasnt drugs involved in their life. Checked their rooms, did a locker search at school etc. At 15 the biggest punishment your son can get is no drivers lic. I told my boys that they wouldn't even be allowed to take the classes if their grades werent up, I couldnt trust them (them making bad choices), disrespect, and other things based upon the individual child. Try to reestablish respect and trust with your son. COMMUNICATE, don't yell, don't lecture. Talk. Like you would talk to me. 'Ya know Johnny I have been thinking about your attitude ...' If he balks at you, let it go. But set the rules, set the punishment, and stick to it. They out grow this stadge, I promise, but in the mean time you have to be firm in your rules/punishment. If you take something away and the behavior is good for two days, give it back on the third and by the forth it is back to the norm. The punishment isnt long enough. I have recommended this book before on here and will again post it here. Have you read the book "To Train Up A Child" by the Pearls? It is an awesome resouce and should be included with every new baby born...{{giggles}}. I would be happy to get you one if you would be interested in reading it. Blessings

Sue - posted on 10/21/2009

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We use the push-ups even on the younger ones. It's amazing how well they work. Escpecially in public, not kid wants to get down and do push-ups in front of their friends or strangers. It may be considered corporal punishment, but it helps build muscle too!

Shernette - posted on 10/28/2009

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I too have a 15 yr old son in High School. There at the age where there testing their boundaries. If you can pick him up from school if you can, take away all privileges and returning them only when he's earned it. Give him chores around the house, and make him do it. Just don't back down.

Eva - posted on 10/21/2009

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I have a 17 year old boy and I have the same problems. I decided to make him earn anything he wants to do. If he wants to go somewhere in his car I give him several chores and things he needs to do first. Same with ANYTHING else. This earning things is done on a daily basis. He can do nothing and get nothing or he can do what he is supposed to do an get a reward for it. Its working so far. Teenagers are hard you have to find a way to be their friend as well as their parent. Its hard to figuere out how to do that. Each kid is different. But this world is hard on teeneagers so you want to keep lines of communication open. But you have to keep a tight leash on them or they can get into lots of trouble. I hope I helped you out some. If you need anything let me know!!

Eva

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Veronica - posted on 06/10/2014

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My almost 15 year old is in the same boat and if we look back to when we were 15, we were also in that same boat. I made a list of chores, not to easy, some are actually hard to get done but the harder the chore the more points he gets for doing it. When he earns 500 points he is off grounding. If he messes up the next day again, its another 500 points. If it continues the points he needs to earn goes up. His grounding depends on how long it takes him to decide to be responsible. I also talk to him about his choice in his friends and is it worth it to get grounded for something one of them had done but you are not sure if he was involved or not. Choices in whom he hangs out with plays a HUGE part in what he does to get in trouble.

Alex - posted on 10/29/2013

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* * * FATHERS * * * FOR TEENAGE BOYS THAT ARE COMING HOME LATE OR MAKING IT TO SCHOOL LATE............................... Take a day off from work without them knowing on the day that they normally have this tardy behavior. Take them to school or pick them up and when the time is right ....... yell real loud, "NOW GIVE DADDY SOME SUGGA ......... and give them a ton of loud kisses in front of all of their high school friends. I assure you they will be punctual before you from now on!

Yourmom - posted on 09/05/2012

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just talk to him. he likely feels disconnected from you. find a common ground and then grow from there. hes a teen he naturally wants to test the boundaries you need to be there to set them as well as communicate with him about his natural disharmony

Tammy - posted on 10/28/2009

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It sounds like there is more going on with your son then meets the eye. He may be having trouble fitting in at school or may be bullied. He may have also fallen in with the wrong crowd and experimenting with drugs. You should try sitting down with him and have a heart to heart. You know your son better then anyone; so if you don't get any true answers....read between the lines. It is difficult being his age and being a freshman at school. There may be things that are going on that he is trying to deal with on his own. Let him know that you are there for him and love him no matter what. I know you do....but they sometimes think that because this or that has happened that we won't. I'm speaking from experience with my own son....no judging here! I wouldn't go back to those years again for anything. I think if he will have a heart to heart talk with you; you will find your answer. Good Luck, I know it isn't easy getting them to open up to us at that age. I will keep you in my thougjhts and prayers. Tammy

Jana - posted on 10/22/2009

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Hes dealing with alot im sure. but your understanding that responsibilities are responsibilities is awesome. first try talking and finding out whats on his mind. he may just need some encouragement. Spend some time with him just gettn to know whats in his head and on his heart right now. could be he feels there are other aspects in his life he thinks are more important, ie, relationships, friends, and as the parent, you can get him back on the right track. its normal for kids to get discouraged over parents that "just dont understand" . his "i dont know" probably means he just doesnt know what to tell you that sounds like a good answer that you will accept. lol. kids naturally want to please their parents believe it or not. they quit trying if they feel like they have a hurdle that is too big to keep them pleasing you. that hurdle may not have anything to do with you personally, but im sure with your support he can get through it. he will thank you for it.

Aubrie - posted on 10/21/2009

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Something I am not seeing here may also be the easiest answer, talk to the teachers. I have found that to be the most helpful when it comes to difficulty in classes. His counselor can take an elective away and sign him up for a study group elective. You have options that he can not avoid but you have to seek it out from the educators.

When it comes to behavioral problems, I have often tried to make the punishment fit the crime. When my son does not take out the trash, I leave it in his room. If he does not come home from school in a timely manner, I pick him up from the bus. I know this may mean missing work (if you work) but sometimes when I have had to give more than I wanted, I ended up with positive results. My son is 17 now and better but none the less, still a teenager.

Sally - posted on 10/21/2009

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You have to ride the storm ..things can get better..i been through it three times now and have another teenager going through their probs... five children i have... lol



Social Services offer a Triple P training course which is quite good and makes you look at your parenting skills ... you get to meet other parents going through the same difficulties etc..being truthful..it hasnt helped me much and i am also a qualified mentor in behaviour support too..its one of those things most mothers have to go through i'm afraid....Even the best equipped familys have their troubles with teenagers... sigh...

Susan - posted on 10/21/2009

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i am also a mother of a 15 year old and what works for me is taking his cell phone away. Evan if I cant find it all I have to do is axcess my at&t account on line and suspend it. It drives him insane to not have his texting and I get more out of him.

Kenya - posted on 10/20/2009

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I have a nearly 14 year old. In general conversation one day I asked him what he loved the most. What was one thing he just couldn't live without. That's the very thing I take away from him whenever I had problems. Literally I don't have many issues anymore because he knows what he will loose if I do.

SuZan - posted on 10/20/2009

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This too shall pass....Boys go through a time when their parents know absolutley nothing and we ask too many questions...:) Keep an eye on everything he does, everyone he's with and don't make his life too comfortable until he sees the light. It might take awhile but he'll come around....I know I have 2 boys...

Lupe - posted on 10/20/2009

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Quoting Dianne:

Use the best of all those answers above...natural consequences are best when they are timely but in the meantime, you may have to add some consequences of your own. I have a therapist friend who often reminded me that there are many things we provide that are assumed to be part of living, but in fact, none of them are. They are all material things that can be removed for a period of time, & it doesn't matter if the teen bought it or it was a gift by some other means. It still becomes your possession until the behavior improves. That can include computer time (and it can be returned in small increments of time like 20 min. & slowly increased), electronic games, television, ipod, cell, etc. TV's in the teen's bedroom can & should be removed or grounding (when they are in their room most of the time) is kind of pointless. Cars - if it seriously inconveniences you, you could firs try allowing driving but a requirement to be home within a reasonable amount of time from the school, like 20 min. If it's later, the car is gone too. There's nothing more humiliating than having your MOM take you to school...I found that out! ;-)

At the same time as you are dealing out consequences, be sure you are offering praise whenever we can. Teens need it just as much as younger kids...and adults! It's far too easy to criticize a teen. Try focusing on the good & verbalizing what you see. It can be anything from doing homework period, or doing it w/o being asked, or a good grade you find out about, or appreciating that he gets to school on time or up in the a.m. without a struggle or you name it! Focus on the positive & maybe he'll come around a little more.

Another help, especially when kids are teens, is to keep them coming to the family dinner table as often as possible. They ARE still part of the family & that is one of the best times for parents to instill family values. You don't have to preach, it will come naturally as you discuss issues of the day & your viewpoint on right or wrong. Or if talking isn't happening much, there are plenty of places where you can find conversation starters to begin a conversation. If you want something but aren't finding any, let me know...I have multiple resources there.

Good luck. Let us know of any positive progress!



Diane gave great advice, listen to your kids, sometimes they are calling out for attention, and the positive feedback is needed more then the negative, communication is the key to teenagers, alot of times focusing on the things they are doing wrong makes the situation worse, focus on the positive, i give all you parents a challenge, something i challenge myself to daily, make sure you find something positive to tell your teenager everyday, whether it be something they are wearing, to doing their homework, to just calling to tell you where they are , or picking up something off the floor at home and throwing it away. anything, you will see that they will notice that you are noticing the good in them. it does work, takes time if you are just learning it. but it does help. fortunately i dont have many problems with my kids, one 20 and one 15, and of course they will always try to test you but if you give respect you will get repect.

Charlene - posted on 10/19/2009

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Defnitaley grounding to their rooms, including take the cell phone, that works for me, but for a longer period of time, like a week or more depending on the crime.

Linda - posted on 10/19/2009

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Maybe give him a punishment that will teach him a lesson in life maybe make him spend the day helping the elderly neighbor or voulenteer at a nursing home or homeless shelter. This may give him a new look on life its not always what you take away sometimes the trick is giving back.

Crystal - posted on 10/18/2009

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Well if taken things away did not work..I might try making him do chores until he is sick of it..at least your house will be extremly clean...you might even try maybe not just taking things away but also may making him stay in his room with nothing but his bed, dresser, and school books..he will get bored enough that he just might crack his books and start studing and doing his homework..hope this works for you.

Tracy - posted on 10/18/2009

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I have a 14year old daughter and an almost 12 year old daughter. I will tell you we have tried everything from taking away their electronics to physical activity. I think the thing that has worked the best is varying the punishment. They never know what will be the punishment so it makes it harder to say well this is worth a little punishment. One of the things my husband and I tried that worked well was everytime they did something requiring punishment or consequences they had to eat a jalapeno pepper and chew it until we said they could swallow. Then it would remind them the next day why they didn't want to do that again.

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Does he have a hobby or something he really enjoys doing?



If so, reinforce with that---give him more of that when he does the "right"thing and disregard him and that hobby when he doesn't.

Gwen - posted on 10/18/2009

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Kids this age like their privacy....if he isn't doing what he is supposed to do, tell him you are going to take his bedroom door off and remove the hinges. Always follow through with what you say, especially at this age, it will get worse before it gets bettter.

Barbara - posted on 10/18/2009

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I am going through the same thing with my 14 1/2 year old....how I see it is...it's his choice..he knows the right thing to do...natural consequence for him will be summer school if he doesn't pass 9th grade...also no football team next year.

Christel - posted on 10/18/2009

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Quoting Gena:

My son is almost 15. I need some creative discipline for this age. Any Ideas?

My son started high school this year. He can never seem to make it home on time. He doesn't do his school work. When I ask him his standard answer is "I don't know". I have grounded him, taken things away, made him do Saturday school and write sentences. I really need some creative effective ideas to make him get a clue. Any suggestions?



First Gena, you should know your not alone. My son sounds exactly like yours. The thing that works the best for my son is taking away his forms of communication, cell phone, computer...not being able to communicate with friends hurts him the most. As far as grades... most schools of an online system you can use to look up your students grades and see what assignments are missing and how they are doing in class. I got to the point where I had to check this on line system daily to make sure my son was doing his work. Of course being in sports helps too, if your son loves sports like him does, then he'll start to realize that if he does bad in school, then he can't play sports. I hope this helps, Christel

Donna - posted on 10/18/2009

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Pick your battles with him carefully! Sometimes a 15 year old doesn't know why! don't sweat the small stuff...it is important to enforce the rules but pick the important stuff like...safety, education and family to enforce with serious consequences. They are scatter brained and have so many hormones raging that they just don't think! While it is not an excuse for his actions...it may help you to understand him better. Most importand....no matter how frustrated you are with him do not forget to let him know that he is loved and you want the very best for him. Teenagers are full of doubt about themselves and cover it up with errogance.

Antoinette - posted on 10/17/2009

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Remember As Mothers Or Parent's, WE Are Only Obligated To Make Sure There Are Clothes On There Backs, Shoes On There Feet, and Food In There Stomach And A Roof Over There HEADS And Raise Them The Best You Can, The Rest Is Accessories NO- ADD- ON'S EARN, EARN, EARN, RESPECT< RESPECT< RESPECT

Candy - posted on 10/17/2009

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I don't allow my 13 year old to do ANYTHING until she's done her homework, and as soon as she walks through the door-if she says she has none-HA, I check her bag, and will email her teacher if I have too! She's been caught lying about it in the past, so I have to be on top of her when it comes to school..Anyways, when she does have homework-I'll sit at the table w/ her and help her if she needs it..This ensures she gets it done, and gets it done right..It's also a great way to keep the bonds w/ her so to speak.

Shannon - posted on 10/17/2009

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I HEAR YOU, LET IT BE KNOWN THAT THERE ARE OTHER PEOPLE IN THE HOUSE AND WHEN IT LOOKS DIRTY A LITLE HELP WOULD BE NICE, THATS A TOUGH ONE FOR ME CAUSE MY 14YR SON IS A CLEAN FREAK LIKE ME

Tammi - posted on 10/17/2009

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I have used the approach of what do you want to be when you grow up? And try to find some point of why thet need to know ... like math.... if you want to be a machanic and own your own business some day, how will you know if some one is paying the correct amount on the bill when you say you will give them a 20% discount? I also make my son know how to solve the math problems on paper first before he can use a calculator!



I bid you luck, I just wish some one could tell me how go get them to open their eyes to see that the floors need to be swept or mopped... not all the time just once in a while, like when they spill something.

Shannon - posted on 10/17/2009

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TAKE AWAY WHATS MEANS MOST TO THEM .... PLAYSTATION, COMPUTER, T.V. AND MAKE THEM READ A BOOK FOR AN HOUR IN THEIR ROOM

Debbie - posted on 10/17/2009

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What does he truly enjoy? That's what you take away. He's at that age he will want to drive...use that as a leverage tool, if you are not responsible to listen and do you work, then you are not responsible to take driver's training. That worked for me. When you tell him something? stick to it, don't back down. PRAY...say to your self "This too shall pass" and it does.

Heather - posted on 10/17/2009

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My son doesn't care about possesions or clothes but we Have a special "uniform for him to wear "slacks dress shoes tie ect" this will have his friends questioning What's up. Take all other clothes away and take a few days off from work. Go to school with him. If the prob is in one class, have him write an apoligy letter and read or give it to the teacher Once you feel the lengh of time is done, check up on him at school and other events periadicly at different times of the day. Most schools are cool with it just call ahead. The embarousment alone and knowing you will follow through and check up keeps them in fear of a repeat. Nic it in the butt and have fun doing it. Remind them that you are doing this becouse they chose for you to do it.

Debra - posted on 10/17/2009

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I had to get creative with my 16 yr old, we have down all the things you have done, we grounded him, taken his guitar away (which is like taking his life away, he loves that guitar) even made him do a report on wages (college degree verses non college degree) nothing worked, so I went to school with him and followed him around and "made sure" he turned his work in, that was effective, now he knows I will do it again, so his grades came up, might seem harsh, but it is his future.

Nancy - posted on 10/17/2009

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We made a drastic change to our routine. Took everything away for 30 days. Made him "earn" it all back. Literally all electronics, TV, games and activities except sports or physical activities and computer was for homework only. They are privileges that he must earn by completing assignments and chores and being respectful to the rules. We've established that he isn't being punished by our taking things away because he has to earn them in the first place.
Teenage attitudes can be rough - it's probably hormones but that's still no excuse. We don't talk unless he is rational and mature. Then we discuss everything. Good luck!

Yvette - posted on 10/17/2009

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Take away anything that requires electricity or batteries. That covers about everything 15yr old love. If this is done indefinately, with privilages earned back such as 30 min for completed homework u may see a turn around. It worked for my 15 yr old.

DOLORES - posted on 10/16/2009

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IF HE DRIVES TAKE AWAY CAR KEYS AND DRIVE HIM OR MAKE HIM TAKE THE BUS OR BETTER YET IF U CAN GET AWAY DURING THE DAY SHOW UP AT SCHOOL AND GO TO CLASSES WITH HIM HAVE LUNCH WITH HIM AND C HOW HE CHANGES I DID IT WITH MY SON AND HE CALLS ME WHEN HE GETS TO HIS CAR AND LETS ME KNOW HE IS ON HIS WAY AND I KNOW WHEN HE SHOULD B HOME AND HE CALLS IF HE IS GOING TO B LATE......SO FAR NO MORE PROBLEMS AND WERE ONLY IN OCTOBER......

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Our school has a peer tutoring program. Sometimes kids just have difficulty in understand what the teacher is saying and this program allows kids to ask older students (Americorp, paid to tutor/mentor) what is what. My daughter used this program successfully.

Dianne - posted on 10/16/2009

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My son says that too, & he's in college now. It's much easier to get them to ask for help in high school. If he just won't, suggest a tutor. And adult, of course. Or ask if going to the teacher with him would make him feel more comfortable. Or contact the teacher quietly w/o his knowledge (depends on the teacher's personality) & maybe you can work something out.

Tricia - posted on 10/16/2009

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I have a 15 year old daughter and I get her attension by taking her cell phone and computer and house pohone priveleges. It gets her attension really quickly!

Rosie - posted on 10/16/2009

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My advice is to sit with him and see where hes havign the hardest time in wiht the schoolwork and try to help. U should also look into talking to the teachers and see if they can help in making him understand better. As everyones said previously taking away the things he loves most does help at times but not often.

Gena - posted on 10/16/2009

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Thank you all for your responses. We already take computer, phone and TV away. I have threatened to go to school with him if he can't get his work done in class. I sat with him for 3 hours last night working on math. I paid for an online tutor so that he has help anytime. Even if I am not home. The first thing he said is what if I don't understand it even after they help me. I said just tell them that. He said no way they will think I am an idiot. There it was right there. That is why he doesn't ask for help at school. I thought that was it but he confirmed it. I don't know how to explain to him that asking for help doesn't make you an idiot. Every way I say it he doesn't agree. Anyone had this problem? I think the not wanting to ask for help is what is hindering him in class.

Dianne - posted on 10/15/2009

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Use the best of all those answers above...natural consequences are best when they are timely but in the meantime, you may have to add some consequences of your own. I have a therapist friend who often reminded me that there are many things we provide that are assumed to be part of living, but in fact, none of them are. They are all material things that can be removed for a period of time, & it doesn't matter if the teen bought it or it was a gift by some other means. It still becomes your possession until the behavior improves. That can include computer time (and it can be returned in small increments of time like 20 min. & slowly increased), electronic games, television, ipod, cell, etc. TV's in the teen's bedroom can & should be removed or grounding (when they are in their room most of the time) is kind of pointless. Cars - if it seriously inconveniences you, you could firs try allowing driving but a requirement to be home within a reasonable amount of time from the school, like 20 min. If it's later, the car is gone too. There's nothing more humiliating than having your MOM take you to school...I found that out! ;-)



At the same time as you are dealing out consequences, be sure you are offering praise whenever we can. Teens need it just as much as younger kids...and adults! It's far too easy to criticize a teen. Try focusing on the good & verbalizing what you see. It can be anything from doing homework period, or doing it w/o being asked, or a good grade you find out about, or appreciating that he gets to school on time or up in the a.m. without a struggle or you name it! Focus on the positive & maybe he'll come around a little more.



Another help, especially when kids are teens, is to keep them coming to the family dinner table as often as possible. They ARE still part of the family & that is one of the best times for parents to instill family values. You don't have to preach, it will come naturally as you discuss issues of the day & your viewpoint on right or wrong. Or if talking isn't happening much, there are plenty of places where you can find conversation starters to begin a conversation. If you want something but aren't finding any, let me know...I have multiple resources there.



Good luck. Let us know of any positive progress!

Lmf64 - posted on 10/15/2009

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Natural consequences. He doesn't turn homework in, doesn't do homework, he fails the class. He fails the class he has to retake it. He does it enough times he doesn't get to graduate with his class. I turned over school responsibility a long time ago. I graduated from high school. I graduated from college. I don't need to do it all over again

Maria - posted on 10/15/2009

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Take privileges away where it hurts teens the most...my boys are the laptop, video games and cell phone usage at nights. Limited use of my PC is restricted to supervised homework and research. Weekends without friends and yard work with Dad, until I see a change in the grades. My oldest son drives (my car), so he knows how much responsibility he has or he's off limits to that too. Lol My youngest son is more the sport jock, but he can't play the baseball varsity unless his grades are within respectable mark (school policy) so he knows how far he can go with his grades. Keep him busy when away from school.

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I agrree with taking away internet and phone. Dakota (15) is extraoridnarily moody and his consequence is directly related to the amount of tantrum we get from him.



We also had luck with pushups. Each infraction of our rules carried a certain number of pushups. (5 for minor violations on up to 50 for the really bad stuff) He has to count them in front of us. Kota's standard answer is "I don't know" also, I just keep asking questions when it is obvious that he doesn't want to even be in the same area code as i am. I do tell him that when he gives me a real excuse I will let him escape.

Melissa - posted on 10/15/2009

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I have a 15, 14, and 2 12 year olds no not twins but when I ground them they have no phone internet music games nothin basically. You would be suprised of how they will do after that for a couple days.

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