What's the best way to teach my 13 yr old boy to show respect for his parents?

Anne - posted on 10/20/2012 ( 7 moms have responded )

5

0

0

I am the mother of one child (a 13 yr old son). Lately, I have had a terrible problem with his smart-mouthed attitude! He is very disrespectful especially to his Dad. The two of them are constantly battling about something. To make matters worse, my husband has a serious anxiety disorder, and can (in my son's defense) be very difficult to be around. He is extremely uptight and has some obsessive compulsive tendencies as well. I understand my son's frustration with his father. Many times it is very difficult for me to side with my husband, because I just don't agree with him on a lot of things as far as disciplining our son. I know that he and I have got to show a united front in order to effectively discipline our son, but I struggle daily in doing so. I have tried talking to my husband and my son. I have tried family meetings. We have even had some counseling (my husband continues to do so). But the problem continues. I know that we are entering into the teenage years, which are difficult enough. But we have the added difficulty of a lot of family tension and the only child syndrome to boot! My son's argument is "If Dad doesn't respect me then why should I respect him?" I have tried to tell him that we all deserve respect, but as the child, he must respect his father simply because he IS his father. I am at my witts end! What do do?

MOST HELPFUL POSTS

Patricia - posted on 10/21/2012

70

1

16

I don't have a son (I have a 13 yo daughter) but respect for his Dad is very important and respect for you and very important, also for himself.

Take your son to a movie, lunch or for an ice cream or a nice walk and talk to him about the top 3 things he needs from his Dad; you might be surprised by what you hear; ask him about the top 3 things he needs from you; then sit down with your husband and talk together; that's what we do and it seems to work well.

I would take small steps every week to help strengthen their bond.

7 Comments

View replies by

Vicki - posted on 10/24/2012

380

0

175

My husband has anxiety, I found myself frustrated all the time. My situation is alittle diffrent im butting heads with my kids and butting heads with my husband. I didnt understand anxiety at first so i couldnt understand why he couldnt do certain things, such as follow through with consenquences. He would let them off the hook because it would trigger his anxiety. It would then force me to back up our household rules. I then became the bad guy to my kids and to my husband because i was creating stress. The more i understood anxiety the more i understood him and how i had to change certain things from my end and he his. I think its great that your husband is seeking councelling, I would recomend that your son learn about his fathers anxiety and his ocd, maybe he can then understand where his father is coming from and maybe he can learn what he can do to help the situation, good luck I know it isnt easy when you feel like your in the middle

♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 10/22/2012

13,264

21

2015

Yeah, normally I'd side with the kid, if dad was just a jerk...but with anxiety disorder (I suffer from that) and OCD...that's a big thing to handle, and the more support from the family, the better.



I know its hard, especially on YOU, because you're essentially the wall between the two (been there, too), and you're torn. On the one hand, here's your husband, whom you've promised to love, cherish, etc, and on the other hand is your son, your baby, and by god, no one better mess with him! It gets tough sometimes.



Counseling will help! It will help to get everyone's family roles defined, and to help give your son ways to help his dad, but still feel the "independence" that all kids need to feel, without the overtone of disrespect.



Best of luck with everything, Anne. PM me if you need a shoulder! Being the rock between the two "hard places" can be wearing...

Anne - posted on 10/22/2012

5

0

0

Thank you so much! I think you're right...some family counseling might be in order. My son is very intelligent and should be able to understand that his dad has a serious disability. We all need to work together as a family to help my husband with his anxiety, which, hopefully will in turn help the whole family!

♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 10/22/2012

13,264

21

2015

In order to get respect, a person must first earn the respect.



Yes, your son should respect his father, simply because without the man, your son would not be in this world! However, it can be difficult with a father that is, in his own way, difficult.



My hubby has a nerve disorder, requiring narcotics for treatment. The mood swings are serious and quick, and sometimes he and the boys come to a head over issues. However, we set down with the boys from day one after their dad became disabled, and explained what was happening, how it changed their dad mentally, and how they could help.



Ok, here's the deal. Your husband already has some OCD and anxiety issues. He's seeing a counselor. Excellent! Now, your son needs to understand that, with the OCD and anxiety, his dad isn't on an even keel to begin with, and the more he HELPS by being understanding, and respectful, the more quickly his dad will realize that he's got a good kid, and will start to show your son the respect he has earned.



If he is respectful of you, but not his dad, I'd say that the biggest thing causing the problems is the OCD and anxiety disorder. Which is an honest disorder! Your son needs to respect that people with those types of disorder may not be as effective at communication, and he needs to meet dad at DAD'S level, rather than bickering or being disrespectful.



I mean, seriously...If he can't respect that his dad's anxiety disorder is something that needs the family to help manage, then he (in my opinion, as a mother of an 18 YO and a 15 YO, AND wife of a disabled man) doesn't deserve respect from his father. It's a two way street. Sometimes you have to let the person in the other lane have a little more leeway due to disorders and disabilities.



Ever thought about whether (perhaps) part of your husband's anxiety is that he's not a good enough father? YOur son isn't helping in that regard. I'd recommend that you start the family counseling back up as a separate thing from your husband's counseling. YOur son needs to learn some respect for disabilities, and those who deal with them. It's not impossible. As I've said, I have 2 boys, both who understand their dad's disability and what they can do to help him feel/act/live better.

Join Circle of Moms

Sign up for Circle of Moms and be a part of this community! Membership is just one click away.

Join Circle of Moms