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This room is dedicated to those who are facing the challenge of raising children without the support of a spouse. This is a place to share ideas and lend mutual support.

Saint Rita is known to be a patroness for abused wives and mourning women.
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I am such a failure at this

May 14th 2013 new

Being a widow and a newly single parent to a 13 year old son with Asperger's Syndrome and ADHD is so overwhelming. His father, God rest his sweet soul, often let him get away with things he should not have, because he was too weak from illness to argue with him, and he would bully his father into buying him things we could not afford, after behaving in a disrespectful way. I then became the "bad" parent, having to be the disciplinarian, and not a very effective one at that, as he grew older and larger and harder to control. Now that his dad is gone, and my heart is broken, I don't know how to gain the upper hand with a child larger than I, who refuses to do much of anythig I say unless bribed. Taking away privileges has no effect. We have seen therapists, he has counselors and psychiatrists, nothing helps. He won't do any homework. I have no idea where to turn. ashamed

May 14th 2013 new

(Quote) Kerry-970208 said: Being a widow and a newly single parent to a 13 year old son with Asperger's Syndrome and ADH...
(Quote) Kerry-970208 said:

Being a widow and a newly single parent to a 13 year old son with Asperger's Syndrome and ADHD is so overwhelming. His father, God rest his sweet soul, often let him get away with things he should not have, because he was too weak from illness to argue with him, and he would bully his father into buying him things we could not afford, after behaving in a disrespectful way. I then became the "bad" parent, having to be the disciplinarian, and not a very effective one at that, as he grew older and larger and harder to control. Now that his dad is gone, and my heart is broken, I don't know how to gain the upper hand with a child larger than I, who refuses to do much of anythig I say unless bribed. Taking away privileges has no effect. We have seen therapists, he has counselors and psychiatrists, nothing helps. He won't do any homework. I have no idea where to turn.

--hide--


My heart goes out to you, Kerry. I wanted to call in the Marines to discipline my son after my husband died and he doesn't have any of the medical complications you are dealing with. Does engaging in physical activity help? Boys will usually talk if they're doing something like shooting hoops or playing catch. He may be angry about his dad and not sure how to deal with those emotions or have a million questions he doesn't know how to ask. The worst you can do is give in because you'll show him how effective bullying can be. Is there a family member be respects be that could be called in?

It won't change anything, but I do understand how hard it is to be an effective parent when you are drowning in your own grief.

Praying for peace for both of you.


Kathy

May 14th 2013 new

(Quote) Kerry-970208 said: Being a widow and a newly single parent to a 13 year old son with Asperger's Syndrome and ADH...
(Quote) Kerry-970208 said:

Being a widow and a newly single parent to a 13 year old son with Asperger's Syndrome and ADHD is so overwhelming. His father, God rest his sweet soul, often let him get away with things he should not have, because he was too weak from illness to argue with him, and he would bully his father into buying him things we could not afford, after behaving in a disrespectful way. I then became the "bad" parent, having to be the disciplinarian, and not a very effective one at that, as he grew older and larger and harder to control. Now that his dad is gone, and my heart is broken, I don't know how to gain the upper hand with a child larger than I, who refuses to do much of anythig I say unless bribed. Taking away privileges has no effect. We have seen therapists, he has counselors and psychiatrists, nothing helps. He won't do any homework. I have no idea where to turn.

--hide--
I'm so glad that you have Catholic Match as a resource Kerry. You are not a failure; you are a mom. hug

May 14th 2013 new

(Quote) Kerry-970208 said: Being a widow and a newly single parent to a 13 year old son with Asperger's Syndrome and ADH...
(Quote) Kerry-970208 said:

Being a widow and a newly single parent to a 13 year old son with Asperger's Syndrome and ADHD is so overwhelming. His father, God rest his sweet soul, often let him get away with things he should not have, because he was too weak from illness to argue with him, and he would bully his father into buying him things we could not afford, after behaving in a disrespectful way. I then became the "bad" parent, having to be the disciplinarian, and not a very effective one at that, as he grew older and larger and harder to control. Now that his dad is gone, and my heart is broken, I don't know how to gain the upper hand with a child larger than I, who refuses to do much of anythig I say unless bribed. Taking away privileges has no effect. We have seen therapists, he has counselors and psychiatrists, nothing helps. He won't do any homework. I have no idea where to turn.

--hide--
Hi Kerry, are there any times/situations where he is relaxed enough to just talk about anything at all ? Sometimes ( mentally ) stapling my lips shut and just letting my kids talk for an hour helped defuse some of the tension, then later causes/issues could be discussed.

May 14th 2013 new

(Quote) Kerry-970208 said: Being a widow and a newly single parent to a 13 year old son with Asperger's Syndrome and ADH...
(Quote) Kerry-970208 said:

Being a widow and a newly single parent to a 13 year old son with Asperger's Syndrome and ADHD is so overwhelming. His father, God rest his sweet soul, often let him get away with things he should not have, because he was too weak from illness to argue with him, and he would bully his father into buying him things we could not afford, after behaving in a disrespectful way. I then became the "bad" parent, having to be the disciplinarian, and not a very effective one at that, as he grew older and larger and harder to control. Now that his dad is gone, and my heart is broken, I don't know how to gain the upper hand with a child larger than I, who refuses to do much of anythig I say unless bribed. Taking away privileges has no effect. We have seen therapists, he has counselors and psychiatrists, nothing helps. He won't do any homework. I have no idea where to turn.

--hide--

I wish I had some solid advice for you but I don't. But, I have ears to listen and can offer hugs and prayers. You are overwhelmed and heart broken and it only makes it more difficult to deal right now. My son didn't do homework either. It was a constant battle for us. I can remember in a fit of anger one night, saying fine then fail but its on you. Little smarty pants still didn't do homework, aced his tests and only grudgingly turned in a few assignments to keep him off the failing list. He is now a Sgt. in the Marine Corps and just got accepted to the University of North Carolina in Charlotte. My youngest was having a heck of a time her junior year and we pulled her out to try private tutoring, that didn't work either, but she went back her senior year and completed both years in one, then went on to get her certification as a nursing aid and started course work for nursing school.

My dad left the family when I was seventeen, and I am the oldest of five. My youngest brother was ten. It was exceptionally hard on them. My mom would drive them to the front door of the high school, make sure they walked in and then drive to work, by the time she got to her desk at work they were calling her to tell her that they were home. She went to the school over and over and nothing worked, she finally just let them drop out, she didn't have the resources in energy to fight with them anymore. The good news, they are both college grads with good educations and careers. One brother has a masters and ironically teaches at risk youth through special education programs. The other is a paramedic and planning to start nursing school in the fall. Both have raised lovely families and while one is divorced after twenty years, the other one is going on twenty two years married.

I am not saying any of these options are right for your son, I am just trying to point out that struggling here and even making decisions that seem counter intuitive to what the general plan is for our children, doesn't mean that failure is an absolute given, some kids just need a different place and time to thrive. He is also going through the grief process, not to mention puberty and everything else. He's probably overwhelmed. My son started running cross country when he was thirteen. Miles and miles he ran, I finally asked him why, and he said mom, I'm just mad all the time and I don't know why, but when I run it all goes away. He was mad because he was thirteen year old boy and they are mad at the world anyway due to all the hormonal insanity going on in their bodies. Add other stressors and it just compounds the situation.

Does he have any uncles that might be able to take an interest and mentor him some? Or perhaps a Big Brother? That can give you a break as well as him.

Know that you are not alone, mothers past, present and future have all faced these kind of issues with at least one kiddo. Big hugs!! And, I'll add this to my prayer list as well.

May 15th 2013 new

Kerry you are not a failure. Being a single mum to a teenage is not easy and to a teen with Asperger's and ADHD, it is very difficult. Turn to our God -cry out to him and he will answer you. I am not in the States so cannot advise you regarding local support networks. You may be able to ask your counsellors for some support services so that you can take some time out for yourself. Praying for you. Praying hug Praying

May 15th 2013 new

First, a hug

Second, there are no easy answers. A tough situation is complicated by the fact that BOTH of you are mourning. Maybe you need to talk about this. He probably really misses his dad and takes it out anyway he can. Your clear thinking is derailed by your grief, and your grief is interrupted time and again by the needs of the present moment.

Third, after a parent dies, kids need to learn:
- I am not Daddy
- it's okay that I don't do what Daddy did, or that I do things differently
- I'm all you've got
It's a tough lesson, believe me!

Fourth, hang in there. My son Joe was 11 and adored his father. Joe failed at homeschooling, dropped out of high school, spent 8 years at junior college without ever finishing an associates degree, suffered health problems...but is now 25, happily married, and gainfully employed.

May 15th 2013 new

Hello Kerry

You would have a tough time even if your husband was healthy and alive. I have some experience with what you are going through.

I am sure you love your son. You want him to grow up and be happy and have many good things in his life. People will share stories about how children grow up and grow out of their bad behavior as a teenager. But Kerry, sometimes they don't. I know of several young people who are in prison, probably for the majority of their adult life, because they didn't grow out of it. Just consider that. If you knew that your son was going to spend his life as drunk living under a bridge what would you do now to prevent that? As a parent, I would do anything short of killing him.

I went to several therapists about someone and was told the following. Now I was shocked by what I learned. I went to provide support to a friend. She was the child's mom. One therapist told us that the child was high on drugs, right that instant. We didn't know. The child was, drug tests confirmed it. Another therapist told us the child is actually very bright and trying very hard to hurt you (the mother). The child was being quite successful. A cop told the mother that he would be bring the child home someday in a body bag because of her behavior after the cops caught her when she ran away. She was 13 or 14 at the time.

I watched cops coming to my friend's house twice a week because the situation would get out of control. The child grew up, spent time in jail, had a kid, doesn't have a job, doesn't care about the kid and wants to run away again. This child is now 26 and has not been successful at anything. My freind is raising her grandchild. I know another story, it is worse.

All I can say is that if what you are doing doesn't work, do something else. But do it now! When your child reaches 18, you will not be able to do anything, except cry.

Some things for you to consider - ( things we were told )

1. Send the child to a treatment facility until she is 18. (my friend did not try this, but jail seemed to help for awhile)

2. Drugs (tried it, didn't work, legal and illegal drugs, my friend had nothing to do with the illegal drugs)

3. Beat the crap out of her (my friend tried it, I called the cops, didn't work)

4. Take away stuff (tried it, didn't work)

5. Give her a bunch of stuff (tried it, didn't work)

6. Call the cops and get her arrested. (Did that several times, never seemed to work)

I do have a friend that was sent to jail till he was 18. He worked hard, got out early and got his life together. He is a physician now. I will help you anyway I can if you want. My kid had ADHD. He was a disturbed little boy there for awhile. He is a cop now, with a wife and kid.

You are sharing in creation, you have created a child. Seemingly it is a thing the God does, creation. Just as God has to deal with sinners we have to deal with children that sometimes do not do what we want. I don't think God ever gets so upset that He stops loving the sinner. I do see parents get so mad at their children that they stop loving them.

May 15th 2013 new

We have tried everything mentioned back when my husband was alive, short of inpatient treatment because my son only had CHIPs insurance and no inpatient facility would accept that. We were told repeatedly that the ONLY place that would accept CHIPs was the State Hospital and then ONLY if they were homicidal, suicidal or actively psychotic (hearing things, seeing things, etc). There are no male relatives around to help--no relatives period. My parents are dead. My late husband's parents are dead. It's just really hard.

May 16th 2013 new
You are not a failure-you are tired.

I left a verbally abusive husband who I later found out was basically bullying my oldest son. He had been angry and his outbursts were scary beginning around 9 yo, he was 12 when I filed for divorce. He has ADD, nothing near what I am sure you are fighting. After we left, he refused to see his dad, his outbursts were such that once I took the door off his bedroom. He was angry at me for not being able to make his dad better and save the marriage. He was on suicide watch for 6 months after I left. A year and a half later, he still struggles, but is a good kid. Last night and tonight he put together a basketball hoop. This is what I learned. I have almost no family, etc that can help too, it is hard.

1. find a good psychologist, keep asking around until you are happy
2. listen to the little things that you can use to start a conversation-I would send him to his room for punishment and after he calmed down, talk it through
3. I hugged him a lot, even when he tried to push me away, it is OK to cry together
4. realize he is testing you and working really hard at it, he has a lot of pain going on and pick your battles
5. find positive things you can do together-eat ice cream, walk in the park, play checkers
6. What in your life can be modified-sandwiches for dinner, a homework coach,
7. try not to take things personally-set the rules, he has to accept them
8. if someone offers help, don't be afraid to accept the offer, and learn to pick up the phone and ask for help

What can he join-scouts, sports, swim lessons-things that will help him learn social skills and keep him busy.
Can you afford to hire a HS boy to spend a few hours a week with him?

Hang in there-




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