my 17yr old son has just been asked to leave his AS level course - he has tho applied for anew course. I have not given him an allowance /pocket money but monies for things- he has had a small job- I get clothes bus pass etc.thinking this has been a mistake really - his dad also gives him money .not sure how much. but he lies about money- used my card and taken from my wallet.
not sure if I give him a pocket money now this is rewarding his behaviour? also I have said to get a summer/wknd job...as I did when young. confused which way to go- have told him off for all lying etc but not punished him.mmmnn how?
any suggestions on best course of action-im confused!
Why has he been asked to leave the course? I think you should ask him for his side of the story as well as the school's. At 17 I would go for consequences and explaining the reality of the situation to that he definitely understands.
I would work out (with him) what he needs money-wise to get through the month for necessities that you do not provide from home, i.e., bus fares, basic phone top-up etc. Do not include 'drinks' (you can bring water from home), or food (you can make sandwiches). Then add a bit for pocket money. We give 50 per month, which covers all his going out with friends etc. and clothes. I do help a bit more, if needed, but only if it's something I wholeheartedly approve of.
A clear allowance is better because there's no resentment when you don't pay up. With teenagers, cut and dried is best, particularly if they were involved in the design.
Talk to him about how he is going to do the work this time and maybe say if you don't see the hours going in, you won't' support him from home.
I think the worrying thing is taking your card and taking money from your wallet. Kids who do this sort of thing usually feel that they are not getting a good enough deal and so resort to stealing. I think it's quite common actually and I can remember doing this when I was a teenager, and still feel ashamed about it.
Talk to him, that's the only way - you don't say whether you have challenged him about the stealing. If not, you must do so, but don't ask if he has taken the money because the chances are he will deny it, but just tell him calmly that you know that he did it and ask him why this was - is he feeling that he gets less money than his mates and maybe couldn't go places that they could. Is he worrying over something in particular. Let him know you are not happy about it but try to work out a solution so that he isn't tempted to do this again.
thanks for replys - have challenged the stealing and lying taken on board the allowance and agreed to give son monthly allowance
,but now he just stays in bed all day and doesn't sleep at night -complicated by eczema and years of no sleep.
never sure if to leave him offered to listen to probs and get counselling for him - I have offered to help him with CV for p/t job - he wont do chores so now I wont give money-and say he cant go out - I am at wits end here to do positive thing.
It sounds to me like your son could be suffering from depression. I say suffering because it is a really nasty mental illness and just wanting to stay in bed all day is very much a symptom of depression. Also the fact that he has been asked to leave his AS course - this could be the cause or the effect of depression.
I know you say you have offered to listen to his problems and getting counselling but I'm in no way surprised that he is not interested n counselling. I don't think there are many 17 year olds who would be and at the mere mention of something like this many of them think that only "mad/crazy" people do stuff like that. How has communication between you and your son been in the past. If it has always been difficult then he is not going to "open up" to you now. Again I think there are many young people who don't want to talk to a parent about their problems. Also he is unlikely to talk to his friends in the way that girls are likely to do.
I'm wondering what sort of child your son was and whether difficulties have only arisen in adolescence or have you been worried about him when he was a child. How did he get on at school - is he an only child? Sorry to fire questions at you, just trying to get more understanding. You mention "years of no sleep" is that because of the eczema or something else. It's small wonder he couldn't cope with further education if he is not sleeping at night.
I think the money issue should be shelved for the moment. I think it's more important that somehow or other you can find out if your son is depressed - common symptoms are loss of appetite, sleep problems, feeling worthless, no interest or motivation in anything, lack of concentration, suicidal thoughts (and many more) that you can google. If you think he is then he needs to see a GP and depression in a teenager will always be taken seriously. I appreciate he won't want to see a GP but there are good medications that are effective.
Of course I could be completely wrong. He might just be lazy and didn't put in the effort for his AS levels, and lies in bed all day because he doesn't sleep at night (his life is sort of reversed) as far as day and night are concerned. Is there anyone you can confide in - do you have a husband or partner, or close friend/relative in real life who knows your family well, as you need support yourself to cope with this difficult period in your son's life. Most teenagers do grow out of that awful stage where they just grunt at you and are so self obsessed and selfish. Incidentally I really don't think teenagers are always aware of their selfishness and this is related to the hormone surge that occurs in adolescence.
thanks for reply- I have thought of depression, due to sleeping,school etc and am trying to boost his confidence -becuase of school and have always talked to my son .But he has a lot of friends and is very happy to go out in the eve! I guess its a mixed bag- and I am a bit intolerant of someone who doesn't work even in teens - due to my experiences as a teenager -i was very cheeky etc yes - but always worked hard at jobs (not well behaved though). have talked to people - with varying views -as in he's lazy- to leave him be. oh well I may find a happy equilibrium or may be being unrealistic-perhaps its only in the west teenagers can be lazy .