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(18 Posts)
Frickssake Sat 02-Mar-19 19:24:25

Hi.
My 15yr old DSS refuses to exercise. ( I have older teens ( now moved out ) who were very active at his age football/ cycling/ swimming etc)so wondering what to do. I've tried going for a walk and encouraging him to bring his bike along if he wants but he ( as teens do ) strops and makes it clear he doesn't want to go. His mum is a ( polite word needed ) headstrong so there's no point approaching it with her. ( She spends all her free time sedentary and on her phone and in school holidays they only leave the house to do the weekly shop according to dsd and do confirms this is probably true ). He has ASD and we only have him 1 weekend in 2 and 2 weeks of school holidays plus 3 days at Xmas. He's getting a bit of a tum on him and as there's already been bullying issues ( these have been dealt with btw ), I don't want him to ( possibly ) be bullied and called fat etc.

hidinginthenightgarden Sat 02-Mar-19 19:27:52

He is 15 not 5. Explain to him the facts - if he doesn't exercise he will gain weight. If he was your son then it would be different. As a step-parent I don't think there is much you can do at this age.

Singlenotsingle Sat 02-Mar-19 19:28:52

Not your problem. Don't worry about it. If the DSS isn't bothered and his dm doesn't think it's a problem, you're just wasting energy and getting stressed over something that you've got no chance of winning.

FiveGoMadInDorset Sat 02-Mar-19 19:29:48

My DD has ASD, it is very difficult to get her to do anything outside of her comfort zone, which is her bedroom reading, I know thats not what you want to hear. She does enjoy badminton but like your DSS she does moan when we take her out for a walk.

Frickssake Sat 02-Mar-19 19:30:20

I've explained the facts to him + in typical teen fashion he's not interested. He is s but immature for his age due to his ASD

MyKingdomForBrie Sat 02-Mar-19 19:31:18

I agree with above - you've tried, don't bang your head against a brick wall. I'd make my opinion clear to DH that he should be stepping in to sort it but I wouldn't personally get involved. As for what dh could do - join a gym together? Find something middle ground like pool/darts?

HomeMadeMadness Sat 02-Mar-19 19:31:26

I think exercise is a great idea but I wouldn't give him the idea or even entertain the idea myself that he's doing it to avoid bullies. The best way to avoid bullies is to develop good self confidence and self esteem (of course it doesn't always work but helps with resilience if it does happen). Giving him the impression that he's fat and needs to exercise will probably lead him to dig his heals in any more and feel shit to boot (not suggesting you would deliberately do this it just might come through inadvertently).

The only real way to develop an exercise habit is to find something he loves, moderately enjoys or failing that can easily tolerate. Might also be great for him to find some friends out of school via a hobby. Without meaning to stereotype I work in a quite geeky profession (very few jock types) and rock climbing is very popular. What are his hobbies at the moment?

Frickssake Sat 02-Mar-19 19:34:56

His hobbies are you tube Lego sweets and anything internet related - my eldest son has ASD but that didn't stop him playing in his bike playing football ( along with being obsessed with his laptop and phone of course) and I've NEVER mentioned his weight / tum to dss

CinammonPorridge Sat 02-Mar-19 19:36:34

I would look at other activities that would build his confidence.

Waveysnail Sat 02-Mar-19 19:38:56

He's 15. You can encourage but ultimately it's up to him.

LIZS Sat 02-Mar-19 19:42:24

Is he overweight? Are you active as a family when he is with you. A knock about of tennis/badminton, walks, visits to places which may interest him?

Whereareyouspot Sat 02-Mar-19 19:45:06

Exercise is good for a myriad reasons (heart health, mental health, strength, good habits) but has minimal impact on getting fat.

Look at his diet, talk about good eating habits, get him cooking and talk about the realities of lots of junk food if you want him to be a healthy weight

Teens won’t exercise for exercise sake. Most adults won’t either. So going for a walk just to walk will have majority of teens refusing.

Find an activity he might actually enjoy. Karate etc are often good for kids who don’t like the classic team sports and open to all ages and abilities. See what’s available.

Do you live near his mum? Because it would need to be something he can do when he’s home too.

Other ideas- bike track riding, kayaking, skateboarding, parkour (this is so popular with teens).

Focus on the fun bit and the exercise is the bonus.

Frickssake Sat 02-Mar-19 20:09:40

He also has hypermobilty issues so a lot of things previously suggested are no good for him. Unable to commit to regular classes as she keeps moving further and further away ( rented accommodation and ultimately wants to live by the sea ) she will definitely not take him to any classes anyway. I'll try to get him cooking but I'm not holding out much hope of getting him away from his phone/pc/ internet.

AuntVanya Sat 02-Mar-19 20:10:57

He is not like your sons. He is a different person with a different background, character, lifestyle, outlook etc. It sounds as though you just expect him to behave as your sons did!
Dont buy/ offer unhealthy snacks. Cook nice healthy meals when he's with you. He's only with you for a small proportion of his time.
Would he be interested in joining a gym- some lads that age are interested in getting 'hench'(!). Maybe would he go to an outdoor gym. Something active but not sport?? Something not too 'organised'?
Does he have any friends near you that he could meet up with?

LIZS Sat 02-Mar-19 20:13:44

Climbing wall, sailing ?

Takethebuscuitandthesink Sat 02-Mar-19 20:16:36

He is old enough to make a decision on this he is just a little bit away from being an adult and you exercising that amount of control is not helpful.

Frickssake Sat 02-Mar-19 20:18:54

Not climbing wall due to his hypermobilty- he can't swim ( he's been to lessons and not really progressed ) although we do take him swimming when he wants to.
I think as people have said, we only have him for a short period of time and he is his own person

Frickssake Sat 02-Mar-19 20:20:04

I didn't realise I was controlling!

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