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Fucks sake, just lost it with my rude, contrary 10 year old...

(19 Posts)
ColgateSmile Thu 20-Nov-14 21:06:12

How the hell am I going to cope with the teenage years??

I've always thought he has fairly low self esteem but I don't know if I'm just making excuses for his rudeness and bad behaviour.

I bend over backwards trying to make sure he has everything he needs; he gets to go to football classes because that's his new 'thing'; I play football and chess with him after school when he wants to (not every day but at least once a week)... But he has to be so bloody awkward when I ask something of him. Ask him to help his little brother with something, he will groan and moan and do it so half heartedly I might as well not have even fucking bothered, ask him to do his homework... same thing... Anything he doesn't want to do is done to such a fucking sloppy standard that if he carries on like this, I have no idea how he will cope in the real world as an adult.

I have been very good recently at not letting him see that I'm getting pissed off with his little attempts at winding me up, the most recent thing being 'I don't want to give you a bedtime kiss/cuddle... because I'm too old'... This is only ever said when I've done something that has pissed him off (like not let him watch an extra ten minutes of tv/stay up a bit later/do something else he wants to do)... Okay fine, I went with it... But tonight I lost it, not massively but there was some shouting from me because when I do try and speak to him calmly he just shrugs his shoulders, says 'I don't know' or tells me he doesn't care.

I can't cope with his shitty fucking attitude, I cannot stand the way that he behaves sometimes and I don't know how to handle it. It will only get worse as he approaches adolescence, I'm torn between thinking 'he's a manipulative, spoilt little sod' and 'he's got low self esteem, I need to support him through these arsey blips he has'.

God I sound like a massive bitch but he's so hard to deal with, good as gold at school but a really quirky character that I struggle to be around sometimes.

He has the ability to sap all joy out of a situation, for example - we went to a zoo a few months back (me and my two sons and the daughter of my friend who is 8), my ten year old acted like a moody little git the entire day, would barely speak to anyone or get involved with the fun (this is the sort of thing he does enjoy, he LOVES animals but seems to think he's too cool to do anything with me/his little brother), kept walking really far in front and then had a strop when I told him he had to hold my hand.

Another example, we went to a party a few weeks ago where most of the children were younger than him. He sat in a corner and sulked with a right bloody face on, saying that there was nothing to do, he was bored and that he couldn't play with anyone as he was too old. I tried to talk to him, tried to coax him to a table where there were some suitable craft activities but he refused so eventually I gave up and left him to stew.

It's like he has developed this bloody moody persona that he feels he needs to keep up when he's at home, with his friends he's a bundle of joy and sunshine though.

Sorry for the essay but I'm so tired of this. How the fuck do people cope with their children???

ClawHandsIfYouBelieveInFreaks Thu 20-Nov-14 22:15:10

How's his relationship with his Dad?

Re the party that's totally normal. My 10 year old dd did that at Halloween. I think hormones are kicking in with them...they're little shockers aren't they?

ColgateSmile Thu 20-Nov-14 22:21:15

He has a fairly good relationship with his dad, we're not together anymore (have been separated for almost 3 years) but he sees him every other weekend and occasionally through the week. To be honest, his dad treats him more like a friend than a son, not really ideal but they do have quite a close relationship.

I had wondered if it might be hormones kicking in but he just seems so young still!

clairewitchproject Thu 20-Nov-14 22:29:34

Does he want a bit more independence? My 10 year old would DIE if I made him hold my hand in public (he likes a quick cuddle in the car but no Public Displays of Affection) and at the zoo or something he likes to have a little bit of 'trust' placed in him to be allowed to look at the monkeys and the orang utans on his own but not go away from those two exhibits and to meet us under this signpost in 10 minutes time so we can go on to the next animals together.

The attitude is son loathes his litte brother and wouldn't help him at all. He can be lippy. Luckily for him I have a philosophy that most of us are doing the best we can most of the time, and that difficulties come from lagging skills - so I do a lot of reeducating, redirecting and firm telling off but am able to not take too much of it personally. The trouble is, they think they are bigger and badder than they are when they are in year 6!

balancingfigure Thu 20-Nov-14 22:30:55

If he thinks he's too old for a goodnight kiss then I expect there is plenty of stuff he doesn't need you to do! From your post I would suggest don't remind him of his homework- let him take responsibility, or not! Maybe he can make his own lunch? Basically treat him more like a grown up

Vikingbiker Thu 20-Nov-14 22:43:00

My 9 year old would love the zoo, only hold hands on his terms and feel bloody bored at a little kids party. I would usually take a book for him or some travel games like chess or cards

A while ago my DS became stroppy when asked to do his daily job or homework. I told him he had to do the chore nicely or not at all. But if he didn't do the job I wouldn't be cooking/cleaning/making packed lunches/giving lifts for him and he would need to get himself places under his own steam, cook his own dinner (washing up too) and ensure his uniform was clean and ready. DS went for it and lasted 36 hours before he cracked. He made himself cheese on toast the first night and then got very jealous when we ate a roast on day 2 smilegrin

Vikingbiker Thu 20-Nov-14 22:45:25

Now he's great. He does his daily chore without me even asking and homework he's mostly fine with too. You can make changes but you will need lay down the rules.

ColgateSmile Thu 20-Nov-14 22:46:13

He definitely thinks he is bigger and badder than he is, it drives me up the wall... I can handle it fairly well most of the time but sometimes I just see red!! He does seem to want more independence, it's so hard knowing how much to give them confused at the moment he gets to walk to school by himself (well, with me and his little brother walking very slowly a way behind, does cross roads on his own though) but doesn't really get to do much else independently, I will leave him in the house for 10-15 mins while I nip to the shop... With lots of emphasis on me trusting him and how grown up he is!

Part of me thinks I should follow his lead re the goodnight kiss thing, I don't want to force him to do it... But I also want to maintain that closeness with him sad

Unfortunately at his school there aren't really any consequences for homework not being done, it's so annoying because he will do it, it's just done really sloppily.

Yes perhaps he could start making his own lunch, he's very fussy with food so he might enjoy being able to select what he wants in his pack up (within reason!)

Thanks for the replies, I don't really dislike him, of course I love the bones of him but sometimes it's just so bloody difficult.

Vikingbiker Thu 20-Nov-14 22:47:24

Part of it is handing responsibility over to him though. He's old enough and doesn't need to be nagged or shouted at. At the same time you shouldn't accept rude behaviour

ClawHandsIfYouBelieveInFreaks Thu 20-Nov-14 22:48:58

He may seem young but it's not too young for hormones to begin shifting about.

As for holding his hand out and about...OP he's FAR too big for that.x My Dd is also ten and she goes to the shop alone...could DS go to a local shop on his own at the weekend now and then?

Vikingbiker Thu 20-Nov-14 22:49:42

I've done that annoying thing of posting one minute before you posted. I have solved the issue in my house but it required some tough yet calm and fair tactics

ColgateSmile Thu 20-Nov-14 22:49:50

Vikingbiker that's so funny! Do you think getting him to do everything by himself (even if it was just for 36 hours) helped him to appreciate you more?

I do always try and emphasise that a family is basically a team and that we have to all work together to make it work, definitely time to start giving him a bit more responsibility I think.

Vikingbiker Fri 21-Nov-14 08:30:17

I'm totally into our family being a team too.

My 9 year old DS empties and reloads the dishwasher every day and does extra jobs at the weekend. He now does them happily but we did have a very civil and calm stand off. I didn't make him do anything but I didn't do anything for him for 36 hours.

Vikingbiker Fri 21-Nov-14 08:32:19

grin i let him choose - be on the team and do jobs happily or don't be on the team and fend for yourself without support

LadyCybilCrawley Fri 21-Nov-14 08:43:29

ColgateSmile I think you are mistaken - I think my son is living at your house - please send him home with a stopover at VikingBikers house for a month or so grin

In all seriousness I could have written most of your post and I shall be trying some of Vikings advice smile

Vikingbiker Fri 21-Nov-14 09:42:39

grin let me know how it goes.

My friends favourite saying is 'my home isn't a hotel' - which strikes a cord with me.

Is there any chance he could stay at home during parties? If it's an hour or so and he's quite sensible?

Vikingbiker Fri 21-Nov-14 09:44:28

It's a tricky stage because they are on the edge of having more freedom but moving forward requires lots of little baby steps.

ColgateSmile Sat 22-Nov-14 16:45:06

Okay I'm definitely going to try and give him more consistent responsibilities, at the moment the only thing he does regularly is get breakfast ready for himself and his little brother. He does odd jobs when I ask, like load the washing machine, wash plates when he's used them, etc. but I'm definitely going to try and find a few odd jobs that can be his

I sent him to the corner shop this morning for milk... That went well (except the shop was closed!) but he made it back quickly and in one piece!

Viking I feel a bit shock at the thought of leaving him home alone for a whole hour grin I sometimes nip out to the corner shop with my younger son and leave my ten year old but not for longer than ten minutes at the moment... I'll start building up the length of time I leave him.

It's so difficult because I think he does desperately want more freedom but emotionally he is quite immature so I don't want to set him up to fail iyswim?

The last couple of days have been very up and down, not helped by the fact that I am premenstrual so feeling utterly crap buuut today has been okay. I have managed not to shout (yet, still a few hours til bedtime!!)

Vikingbiker Sat 22-Nov-14 16:50:44

Every extra little bit of freedom feels like a huge step to me, never mind my kids grin

If he has set daily tasks it will be more straight forward I hope - less negotiation

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