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My DS is 13 and was often described as the most confident child people had ever met. Always been good around girls and a big personality. Started at boys grammar school 2 years ago and has slid into what I thought was the standard grumpy teenager ever since. He has had a couple of crushes on boys and suffered at school because of it, and I know he has tried to get physical, not all the way, but further than a kiss, with a girlfriend. We have talked to him about taking it easy on the sexuality question, we wouldn't mind which direction he took, but I have felt for a while he is confused and struggling. He does not have any good friends and would now do anything for the approval of the cool boys at school. This morning I confess I looked at a fb conversation in which he told a classmate he was planning to commit suicide this weekend. It wasn't a 'jokey' tone, for want of a better word, and I need to let him know that I know. Help!!
He possibly meant it when he said it. Whether he meSnt it give mins before or after would I think be extremely debatable. At this age death appears romantic, releasing, pay back. Not quite how you view it once you have any experience of it.... It certainly wouldn't be a forever thing, as final as death is that u understand as an adult. It's more just a method of getting x y or z to stop.
Say u were searching for a previous thread on history, clicked and found the comment by mistake. Reiterate ur love, acceptance and how special he is then drop it and watch. He sounds relatively normal tbh but well, I'd hate for a sign to b missed coz I as a stranger said he's fine, iuswim!
Whether or not he meant it - and I think a 13 year old certainly can mean it - I don't think this should be treated as 'attention seeking' in the negative sense that phrase usually carries. He sounds like he is very confused, finding things hard, and maybe depressed. You do need to let him know you know, gently, and make sure he knows you are there to support him. Being 13 sucks. Being 13, wondering about your sexuality, and being given a hard time in school about it sucks even more. He needs time to figure it out for himself, to know that whatever he concludes it's ok (and you sound like you'll love and support him no matter what, which is great; he's probably feeling very insecure though so it might not hurt to reiterate it), and probably some adult help to make things better for him.
If there is homophobic bullying going on at school, that needs to stop, and I'd talk to the school. Your DS doesn't need to know that you have, and school can be sensitive about it and make sure that whatever crackdown they have isn't linked to him.
If he needs information, to help him feel less confused or to reassure him that it is ok if he does not like girls in that way, or if he likes both girls and boys, or whatever, there's a lot of good websites out there; you could find a few for him (so he doesn't end up anywhere non-age appropriate, which is a risk with googling) - likewise if he's just scared about what people will think; in that case have a look at It Gets Better.
If he is depressed and anxious in general, he may benefit from some counselling, either via the school or the GP. As I said, being 13 is pretty shit in and of itself sometimes, so he may just be having a bad time, or there may be more going on; you won't know unless you can get him to talk to you.
Good luck. Sounds hard but you sound lovely and having lovely parents will be a great help.
Please take it seriously- I wish my parents had picked up on things when I was that age- my school years could have been so different. Wouldn't you risk indulging your kid a little if it meant ruling out the possibility that they were unhappy and hiding a whole lot more?
Really good talk last night, he wasn't angry at me at all for reading his conversation and was much more open than I thought he would be. He had had a bad couple of days, pushed away by friends he tried to approach, and felt that he couldn't try any more. He had wanted the other boy in the conversation to say he would be missed him if he hurt himself, which is actually just what he did say. He has promised to talk to us before he gets to that point and I have pointed him towards some websites and phone numbers if it's difficult. We talked about the friends issue and I think he is coming across as a bit desperate, trying too hard, rather than genuinely disliked, so that's a work in progress, but he's optimistic. I'm very proud of him, he is completely unfazed by the sexuality question, says he doesn't know yet and is OK with that. I didn't mean to suggest that what he said shouldn't be taken seriously, whatever was behind it, quirrelquarrel, I think I chose my words badly - more that I needed to know whether it was a temporary feeling or something deeper. I'll worry forever and a day, of course, but I feel much more confident he wouldn't bottle things up next time. Thanks so much for the support, it was the first time I had been on here, and I needed it!