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Just completely cocked up with DS13(27 Posts)
That really. STBX and I split up after 20 years just over a year ago.
I live in a poxy flat with no money and try to be all Pollyanna.
I'm fed up with everyone. Custody of DS is shared and today, like a typical teen, he was trying to slope off onto Xbox instead of school, answering me in monotone and I flipped. Banned Xbox for life had a big rant and went off sobbing.
Came back and he was crying. Gave him a hug, apologised for losing it, explained I was under a bit of pressure and a bit worried about him. Unbanned the Xbox and made a cup of tea.
He is still not talking to me, I feel awful. I'm a dreadful parent, aren't I? I rarely lose my temper but that's no excuse. I should be able to act like a grown up.
I have been the grown up for so bloody long, his father is a manipulative arse and told Ds everything was my fault and I've had to fight to regain our relationship and now I've put it back to square one.
1. He is a teenager. They can all have moments/days/years like this
2. I read a brilliant quote in a book last week: anyone who worries about their moral compass is not the sort of person who should be worried about their moral compass. The same applies to parenting imo.
3. You sound like a great role model so ease up on yourself. He will speak to you when he is hungry.
Respectful love includes saying sorry. It does NOT include never losing your temper or fucking up in some way. Kids are going to fuck up too, they need loved ones to show them how to make amends - you've made a mistake and now you're making amends.
That's not bad parenting, that's honest, humble and respectful parenting. It's how you raise kids who are honest, humble and respectful as well.
Go easy on yourself. Dont try to be Pollyanna - it's ok to cry and be sad. Just stay honest with your DS and keep demonstrating that even on a bad day, you're always trying to put him first.
Chin up, you are doing such a hard thing just now. Xx
Well if you are a dreadful parent then so am I. I have literally taken my dcs xboxes away (for life) about 30 times since lockdown started! It’s become something we laugh about now as They even joke to hide the Xbox controllers every time I get a bit teasy 😳.
Go easy on yourself, these are stressful times for everyone 💐.
Thank you everyone. Those posts made me giggle ('He will speak to you when he is hungry.' ) I'm glad to see my life time Xbox ban isn't uncommon and @rvby, I appreciate the positive spin.
I can't seem to stop crying today, I think it has all just got to me.
On the plus side DS has just brought me a cup of tea and I can hear him chatting away to school friends online.
I really appreciate the kind words, very reassuring. It's hard sometimes.
You apologised and acknowledged your behaviour and explained how stressed you were at the time.
That in itself makes you a good role model and a good parent.
You are human. Teenagers are difficult !
What @Samtsirch said.
My mother used to freak out like this...but never apologised or explained. Or ever gave hugs. We were just supposed to pretend it never happened...and she was the only one who was ever allowed to lose her temper. We were made to feel - and expressing - most emotions was wrong. As a result I still struggle with apologising myself.
You've just taught your son some very valuable life skills.
I am starting to feel like I might not be such a lost cause!
He has made me tea and biscuits, is on his Xbox with a promise to play Scrabble with me after dinner (his choice!) and I am sitting down and not attempting to save the world for a change.
Taking the dog out in half an hour to get some fresh air.
Again, thank you. I am trying so hard to be perfect and supportive and not put any pressure on him and instead turned into a ranty lunatic. . The reassurance, humour, advice and kindness has been hugely appreciated x
I hear you. I'm a single mum and today I got in from work and ds who is also 13 admitted he hadn't done his school work ( as promised after speaking to his tutor last week!) I had brought lots of snacks and nice drinks for him and was looking forward to being able to spend time with him this weekend. But now he'll have to do a weeks worth of work this weekend and tonight. I told him off and he got stroppy and I got angry and upset as was in such a good mood before. Am going to go in now and apologise. They are so difficult at this age!
He has made me tea and biscuits, is on his Xbox with a promise to play Scrabble with me after dinner
Sounds like you’ve done a pretty good job of bringing him up so far, if that’s anything to go by.
Perhaps the silence was him reflecting on how his behaviour contributed to the outburst and that he ought to look after you a bit more.
@ScabbyHorse Well done. It's very hard motivating a 13yo, especially when you are tired yourself. Good luck!
@Rainbowshine The Scrabble is hysterical. He is dyslexic and the spelling can go awry! We had a rule last time that if he could use the (blatantly made up) word in a sentence or justify the spelling, he could have the points. (I am good at Scrabble so like the challenge ). It showed me how funny he can be when he wants to be.
My own parents divorced when I was 11 and my brother was 13. My brother grew up quite (very) scarred by it all and so I am determined not to let the same happen to DS. I think I have unrealistic expectations and standards for myself, it's been a very hard year, but yes, perhaps I'm not quite as bad as I thought. .
He has made me tea and biscuits, is on his Xbox with a promise to play Scrabble with me after dinner (his choice!) and I am sitting down and not attempting to save the world for a change
Now THIS is proof you're a wonderful mum. What a lovely boy. You'll have a laugh later with him and all this will be looked back on exactly how it was - just a shit day and you're only human!
Enjoy your scrabble time together
I agree with above, you sound fab.
Parents are human.
No harm letting them see that occasionally.
These are very hard times for people.
Especially parents doing it on their own.
Be kinder to yourself that you.
You sound great.
Parenting is so much more than the occasional bad day.
Christ, we all have them.👍
He sounds like a great lad.
You're doing a great job.
This is my life!
Seriously we all lose the plot. I shouted m, sworn at and given all kinds of unrealistic punishments to my ds13 who sounds just like yours
The important bit is being able to talk about your feelings with him ( in calm manner ) admit your mistakes and apologise when right to do so
But he also needs to accept there are rules and boundaries and expectations and if broken there will be consequences
But these are tough times and a bit of leeway on both sides won’t go amiss
You really do sound like an excellent parent.
There was a happy conclusion to it all.
He came off the Xbox without me asking (miracle), we walked to the chip shop and had chips and curry sauce (that's a spending spree for me!), had an epic game of Scrabble (yes, I know, I lead a rock and roll lifestyle), bath (him) and bed. All very normal
I am not expecting him to have turned from teen to angel overnight, but I very much enjoyed the effort he put in and hope I remember to talk to him and deal with it all a little less dramatically next time.
Once again, thank you all for the very kind (and funny) messages and advice. Without another adult around, it is sometimes trickier to gain a sense of perspective x
Great update OP.
He sounds like a good lad and a kind one.
The teenage years are funny ones, one minute asserting themselves, the next minute asking you to rub their back in bed 🙄🤣like when they were 5.
I have found boys to be hugely sensitive.
Have a good day
Oh and I don't think I know of a household that doesn't have ructions occasionally over xbox/ps4....
Technology has been the source of 99% of the drama in this house over the past nearly years without a doubt!
I had a very tough time with my son when he was a teenager and I totally hear you. His father and I separated when he was small and he had absolutely no boundaries and was a poor role model. I felt like my son had to walk between two very different worlds. It fell to me to be the one constant in his life. It sounds to me as if this is the same for you. It's an intense parenting experience because it's a mixture of additional responsibilities whereby you are trying to refrain from being negative about the other parent but simultaneously filling in for their shortcomings and allowing the child to figure out what sort of person their dad might be. I absolutely agree with other PPs that you don't need to hide your emotions. Reaching out to your son to apologise and letting him see your emotions will bring you closer together than being Pollyanna ever will. There's a balance between oversharing and letting him see you as an adult with your own needs. It sounds like you are a wonderful mum trying to do her best and I think he will understand that as he matures. Sending hugs
And, yes, the Xbox was similarly a battleground. They're very addictive to teenagers and I would literally watch my son change mood the longer he would play on it. They can be quite damaging to relationships because they have such a pull on them and trying to get them to be 'available' and be 'back in the room' is difficult. Damn those bloody black boxes.
@Whatabambam. I think you have described my situation in a nutshell
@billy1966 Yes. Technology is a paradox of ground breaking and destructive. Definitely a source of drama!
Tbh this is a difficult time for all. DS(14) and I had a not so great moment yesterday afternoon about homework and his lack of effort. I wasn’t at my best, but I apologised and explained why I was apologising. I think it’s quite important for children to see that adults can also make mistakes and can own them and apologise-and that you can move forward.
You’re doing fine!
I suspect him 'not talking to you' for a while after the incident was probably a mixture of shock at your reaction and him reflecting on his own behaviour. It might have made him realise you're a person, not just Mum - and that's not a bad thing!!
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