Can a mother defend her son and do wrong?

Anita - posted on 06/25/2012 ( 6 moms have responded )

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My 13yr old son has always got poor grads in school.He is not dumb he grew as a gentle and perfect mannered boy.He loves to play video games.Throughout his school yrs teachers always sent letters about his low grads, not completing H.W in time not completing assignments in class.
He is courties to his classmates does not indulge in any fights in school.
Not intrested to study and improve his grades.I have taken away his vedio games and laptop but stil he does not want to study.My husband thinks he needs good spanking.He is now thirteen and has all symptoms of the rebel teenager back answers says" does not care".He is very disorganised his room always a mess and no matter what i do, i stand with him and help him tidy and organise his room it will be always messy.Also his school files and assignments are not organised ,he does not get his HW written .He sucks his little finger only at home.He took french and did not do good so we switched to spanish and he failed .We just got a letter from school that he is failing in Spanish.My son is calm about it and says that he spoke to councler and will repeat Spanish 1.I just dont know what to do ....I also have a daughter who is 14 and she is opposite to him always does her HW and submits assignments in time ,gets good grads., organised.My husband often praises our daughter and talks low to my son about his failing.This hurts me a lot i have to intervene when i see my husband demeaning my son.I see his sad face and it kills me.....I dont know what to do ..my husband and I always argue because i defend my son.I tell him that he is ruining my sons self esteem by degrading him and comparing him with his sister and my husband does not agree to it.He says that our son is going to be worse because i am defending him....he says my son needs a good spanking then only he will learn ....Please advise .....

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Tara - posted on 06/25/2012

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First, if it were me I would tell my husband to back off and quit demeaning my son - that isn't helping anyone.

Second, has your son been tested for learning disabilities like dyslexia or things like ADD or ADHD? Part of his problem may be that he is having difficulty taking in the information or processing it. (I ask that because my husband is mildly dyslexic and has ADHD and some of your son's behaviours sound like how he was as a kid.)

Third, I agree with the other ladies that, if he's been tested for possible learning difficulties, he isn't stressing because his Dad is off his back and he's still having trouble then a tutor might help, especially if he is only failing one or two things.

Fourth, definitely set up a homework schedule and set it up so your son has a quiet area he can work in. Make sure he knows that his homework is a priority and his "fun" activities will be limited until he can prove to you that he is doing his homework on a regular basis.

Fifth, spanking? really? for a 13 year old. That's just not going to work. It is more likely that it will backfire and cause your son to dig in his heels more. I would absolutely squash that idea flat.

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Louise - posted on 06/26/2012

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I have had this in my house when my sons were growing up. My first son was very bright, in fact on the gifted and talented programme. My other son who is bright but never bothered at school and the reason was he could never be as good as his brother. He had the same education and the same opportunities but he never even tried. His room was always a pit, he never did his homework or if he did it was rushed the night before, his school books were torn and tatty he really did not care. I spent all of his primary school days sitting with him to make sure he got assignments done and handed in but when he went to high school I lost track of what needed doing and when.

I spent 6 years nagging at him to pull his finger out and get on with it, as it was such a waste of talent. Surprisingly he passed all his exams with an average mark but he could of got straight A's if he had even bothered. It was so frustrating to watch as a mother. His room was/is a problem even now he is 18 and working full time. My husband tells me to leave the mess, but I know he is not going to do it and I cant stand the filth so every few months I go in there and tidy up and it takes me a day to do and within a week it is back the way it was. He is never going to change! I have just accepted this but my husband never will.

All I can advise is to encourage him as much as you can, chat with him and tell him he is as smart as his sister and you love him very much, try and get him to be competative with his sister and get better grades. Our children are so different and it is hard for a younger sibbling to keep up with a high achiever, he always feels a failure although he never tries. Good luck.

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Is he failing everything? What subjects does he have the most trouble in and what is he most interested in? The reason I ask is this: If his worst subjects are what I call "electives" ie: spanish, woodwork, art... then don't make such a big deal out of it. If he is failing at his core subjects, then a tutor could help. The school should be able to help you out with finding a suitable one. Encourage him when it comes to the subjects he is most interested in. Help him research what future careers could come from his interests and help him to find a way to work towards that. Even though he is only 13 it isn't too early for him to be thinking about possible career choices, and it could spark up his interest enough for him to get motivated to put in the effort. And one more thing, ask your husband if he himself wasn't performing to a certain standard at work, would it be ok for his boss to come and punch him? Because basically that's what he is suggesting in regards to spanking your son. You should continue to stand up for your son and help him. We have to look after our boys and set them on the right path in life. Best of luck.

Kelina - posted on 06/25/2012

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comparing him to his sister? not cool. also not going to work. You could try hiring a tutor, and that might help but you might actually want to have him evaluated to see if maybe he has a learning disability, and also get his eyes checked. Often kids would rather fail school than admit they need help or anything else that might get them labelled uncool especially if he's already being labelled as not good enough at home. at least being a rebel a school he's accepted. you might want to talk with his teachers as well and see what they think about the homework situation.

Firebird - posted on 06/25/2012

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Ok first off, your husband should not be demeaning him, that will only cause him to rebel more, and you are probably not doing your son a disservice by defending him. Secondly, the world outside of school doesn't care about your son's self esteem. Harsh, but true. Once your son finishes grade school and starts college and work, he will have to accomplish something before he gets praised. This is something he will not learn in school. Third, your son is 13 and depending on where you live, it's probably now illegal to spank him, you might want to mention that to your husband the next time he says the boy needs to be spanked.

Set up a schedule for your son's after school time. He doesn't do anything else until his homework is done. Unless he normally has an after school snack. Brain food first, then he sits at the kitchen table and does homework. A tutor is a very good idea if you can afford one, it's quite possible that your son just needs some one on one help. Have you ever asked him exactly why he doesn't get his assignments done?

Brianna - posted on 06/25/2012

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maybe you should hire a tutor for him? i mean kids dont like to listen to there parents but there less likely to talk back to the tutor and the tutor can help him with his homework.

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