Trouble with 15 year old son at wits end any suggestions please!

Shelly - posted on 06/10/2010 ( 16 moms have responded )

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My fifteen year old son is drinking smoking pot borrowing my vehical without permission he doesnt even have his license and he is sneaking out at night I am at my wits end with him I have tried grounding tried not letting him be with his friends . He tells me its his life and I need to butt out of it and let him live it is way. I get him to open up a little bit but then he gets really angry and storms off and tells me I cant help him. Dont know what else to do I would really appreciate some suggestion right about now. I know this is a rough age but I dont know What else to do. He is taking summer school again so he can go on to the 11th grade. I have spent many a sleepless night trying to figure out something to get him back on the straight and narrow. i would really like some suggestions. Please help Im despreate for some help.

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Andrea - posted on 06/11/2010

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I agree with the last poster. Ensure that you tell him you will call the police, I know it is harsh but he is only 15 and they think they are invincible and nothing can touch them. They see us adults having a lot of freedom, but they dont realise or comprehend that freedom comes with rules just like when they live at home. My son keeps telling me that he cant wait till he leaves school because I cant tell him what to do, but as I try to remind him, being adult comes with responsibilities and we are all answerable to someone no matter who we are or how old we get. Reporting your car stolen and him getting caught maybe a wake up call he needs and also its not just his life he puts at risk, its other peoples as well. Good luck

Shenequa - posted on 06/11/2010

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I'm on the fence with this one..I don't believe you should have to hide your car keys in your own house,but i can understand why. What i can say is when i was 15..The "out of control' kids were sent to what we call Scared Straight. Where they will let you walk through maximum security prison and let you hear the stories of those inmates and how they got there. It worked for alot of children that thought they knew it all..And this might sound a little harsh but i would tell him next time you take my car i will report it stolen. Let him spend some hours in the precinct. Most children do not like that when they realize that there freedom can be snatched away that quick when they do things that are illegal. Good luck!!

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Nadia - posted on 05/27/2013

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I am a single mom and I am going through the same with my 16 years old son. I am worried 24/7, i can't sleep at night, and i have nightmares. i tried everything with him, nothing works. I am running out of gas with him and i feel hopeless and sad.

Jasmine - posted on 06/18/2010

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it sounds like he has issues. is there anybody he looks up to that you can trust to ask him wat is going on. maybe they can help. with the car i would tell youl call the police next time.

Sally - posted on 06/16/2010

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You might try sending him away to live with a relative for a while, at least for the remainder of the summer. I sent my 18 year old away to live with grandparents during his senior year of high school. It took some time but he's turned his life around. He'll be 21 in August. He's attending college and has been working with the same company for a couple of years, promoted, given employee of the year award. We felt we had to make the break with three younger children watching his bad behavior.

Shelly - posted on 06/15/2010

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I want to thank everyone for your advice and I am sticking to my guns so to speak he is grounded and no longer able to visit his friends and he his trying everything he can to show me a little bit of responsiablity and he is excepting his concenquences for now thank you for all the good advice.

Tonya - posted on 06/13/2010

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i agree w all these posters..TOUGH LOVE is one of the hardest things u will have to do w your children..but you have to do it,and stick to it.reminding them that you do love them and will always be there for them helps keep them reminded.you can't allow them to take control of your life at the same time.they will do what they want as much as they can...and in the end they will have to pay for their mistakes.its a real hard situation but I found taking things that mean something to them;such as phone,ipod,video games works best.If they want money ...GET A JOB!!!! It'll keep em outa trouble..give em responsibilities and have their own money ...which I suggest opening a savings acount for at least half their check.good luck...I 've been there done that!! It's tough..thats why you have to be tough!!!

Amy - posted on 06/12/2010

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I know how hard this is on you right now!!! My son has been doing this for 3 yrs now. We have been in juvie, we have been in inpatient treatment, we have done tough love and we have done counseling. Nothing ever worked. He is a hustler. And he is good at faking people out. He can sucker anyone in at any given moment.
He is finally getting a punishment that not even I can get him out of. He is now spending time in county jail. My only time with him is on Saturdays. The good thing is he has finally wizened up. He is 18 in jail and has a 5 month old daughter that he cannot touch or hold. She cries when he talks to her on the phone behind the glass. It scares her and makes him cry for what he has done to her life and his.
So, I agree with Jane ... call the police, report everything. Save your son now!!! I don't want anyone going thru what I am going thru now. My younger kids think I am meaner now but I have to be. And so do you!!! It's for their best interest and well being!!!

Be strong, and be there for your son. There will come a time when he looks at you and says "Mom, I'm sorry and I love you and need you" ... it's a good feeling when it happens. Be strong for you and your son. Only cry when he doesn't see.

Cherie - posted on 06/12/2010

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I can understand the pressure you must be under right now. Worrying about your child and if he is safe.
If you think about his life up to this point, maybe you will see and trust that you have put into him, all the love and strong foundations that you could in his young life. Have faith in yourself and the skills and grounding you have instilled in him. Right now he is testing his environment and his own boundaries and reactions to them. Be strong at this point, he still needs you, even though he doesn't admit it. It is going to be a tough time for sure, but don't lose sight of your baby! Be there for him!
My son just turned 19 and has done everything your son is doing. He is still doing some of them actually, and I still fret and worry about him, but I am seeng signs of maturity in him and that strengthens my hope!!!
I hope for the best for you too!!

Tracey - posted on 06/12/2010

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I have read all these posts and I have a 15yr old actually identical twin boys and I suggest counselling as they can eventually get to the route of the behaviour because until you know and understand the behaviour you can hide your keys call the cops ect ect but in order to work through the problem you have to find the problem good luck

Kathleen - posted on 06/11/2010

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hi,my son is also 15,also drinking,smoking weed,sexually active,been in trouble with the police,does NOTHING at school..I suggest you put a CHINS on him.The court will put specific and strict rules that if he doesn't follow,he could get locked up.
If you are not familiar,this,at least in Mass. is a "Child In Need of Service"..curfew,truancy,drug tests,this is no joke.But you have to be able to show tough love and call his PO when he breaks the rules. I have no help with my son,his dad isn't around.But I am not letting him become a loser.I have tried to teach this boy respect and consequences,nope.And I have 2 younger children to think about,plus my own sanity.Good Luck,I know how hard it is to feel so helpless concerning your child,and 15 is still a child.

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I have a son that has been involved in the same kinds of things. I told him we won't pay for anything anymore if he isn't making contributions to the family. No drugs in the house either. I told him it was a matter of character and integrity. I won't lie for him and he is responsible for the consequences of his action. I have hidden the keys and when he has friends over I take theirs as well so they can't sneak out without a lot more effort on their part.
I have been very honest and candid with him.

I agree with the poster saying you must FOLLOW THROUGH with whatever you commit. It is often harder on you than them. Chin up!

Jane - posted on 06/11/2010

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For some kids, the best thing is to either act like a prison warden, or find someone who can. Does he have a male role model? Sometimes that can really help, because boys really, really need them at this age.

Additionally, I would (and have, for my eldest) laid out the fact that illegal activities are not allowed in my home, and that if he engages in them, I will be forced to report them. Get a lanyard for your keys and keep them on you. If he takes your car, report it stolen. IF you find drugs, report it. Let's face it, you can't afford to be charged for his drugs, or what he does with your car. Explain this to him, in no uncertain terms. "I will not be liable for your mistakes. I have to protect my interests in order to take care of you and any siblings. If I get sent to jail because of your pot or your alcohol or your activities in my stolen car, we are both up a creek."

Give him fair warning, then (and this is THE MOST IMPORTANT PART) follow through. If you don't follow through, you don't mean it and he will ignore your threats forever.

Yes, it's a tough age, but many kids make it through without doing any of the things your son (and mine) are engaging in. My son is straightening out as he realizes we will and have called the police.

Then, get to a family counselor that can help you work on the relationship. Because if he won't talk, you can't help, except by being the prison warden. So family counseling is equally necessary.

Good luck, I'll be praying for you.

Stephanie - posted on 06/10/2010

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well all u can do is try to enforce good habits and pray he make good choices. Dont forget we were 15 and thought we had all the answers. Im learning to just b there when they realize their mistakes.

Angela - posted on 06/10/2010

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I agree with Angie, hide your keys. First, you're going to have to stop taking responsibility for the way your son is reacting. The more you react, the worse he'll get -- just because he's making you miserable. Yes, it's his life, but it's your car and your house and you have rules that he has to follow. If he drinks and smokes pot, ask his in a nice matter of fact way how he would feel if you called the cops on him and how "you can't imagine what that would feel like," since he's breaking the law. Don't tell him what you're going to do to him, let him know what you're going to do for you. If he does finally open up to you, because he will once you take a stand on what you will accept in "your household," maybe suggest him seeing a psychologist, someone neutral to speak to. I hope this helps :)

Angie - posted on 06/10/2010

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First, hide your keys so he can't steal your car - even if it means you keep them on you all the time including at night. Second, if he wants this to be "his life" he can learn to take responsibility for it. Let him pay room and board at the rate of your local college. Put the money in an account that you can use later to help him with college, trade school or whatever. Third, don't give him a penny and let him know it's because you won't finance his drug habit. Finally, don't allow him to get a driver's license as long as he's smoking pot - it's too dangerous for him and others on the road. You can buy a drug kit at Walgreen's to check his urine weekly.

Good luck, this a toughy.....

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