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Is anyone else trying to get their Dyspraxic DC through their GCSEs?

(8 Posts)
SirRaymondClench Tue 04-Feb-14 18:34:55

DS is in the first year of his GCSEs and I am already at the end of my rope with trying to push him along. He lies about work he hasn't done, has dropped two GCSEs to make it easier to pass some and even though has been told he could get an A in one subject if he put the work in, could not give less of a fuck.
I could cry (and am doing right now) because I can't get him to see how important this is.
All he wants to do is play on his XBOX (banned during the week) and put in minimal effort. I have been to endless meetings at school about how to make life easier for him to do well and everyone seems to put the effort in - apart from him.
His father doesn't see him for weeks at a time and his catch-phrase is "well all I can do is speak to him" yet makes out to the school that he is so hands on. He doesn't even make sure he does his homework on the rare weekends he has him.
I don't know what else to do.
I posted just to tell someone as I feel so alone with this.

madhairday Tue 04-Feb-14 19:36:41

Just wanted to reply to say thinking of you. My dd isn't at GCSE stage yet - she is in Y8 - but she has dyspraxia and a lot of what you say sounds familiar, particularly about the minimal effort thing. It can be such a drag to get her to do her homework. Are the school putting in as much support as he needs - eg, will he have a laptop for exams? DDs school have recently given her a laptop for use in lessons and an ipad for homework, both of these are making abig difference as it is a lot less tiring for her to type than write.

The situation with his dad sounds really difficult. I wish I had some advice and suggestions, but wanted to stand with you, knowing the challenges of having a dyspraxic teenager.

I do hope things get better. One book I have found helpful, you may well have read it, is this Caged In Chaos which is written by a dyspraxic teenager and has some good tips for organisation etc, it may be helpful to him to read it and identify with it.

SirRaymondClench Tue 04-Feb-14 20:36:34

Thank you for replying Madhairday It means a lot x
It starts from 7am when I tell him it's time to get up and goes on till he goes to bed. You know what it's like.
Sometimes I feel like I have a huge wheelbarrow and I'm just pushing him around all the time.
School are doing what they can I think but some of it has to come from him and it just isn't sad He has a laptop for the most part but forgets to pick it up from the school office...he has to be micromanaged which makes him angry but if I don't stay on top of him he drifts...
Your post made me cry because I know you know what this is like
I will get that Caged in Chaos book. I could do with an insight into what goes on in his head

MrsBright Tue 04-Feb-14 21:30:15

Dyspraxia may have nothing to do with this.

I didn't give a monkeys about my GCEs. I cared even less about my A levels and didn't bother even turning up to the exams.

However much you want him to pull his finger out, you cant make him. You can't study for him - no matter how frustrating it is just watching him just mess about. Ultimately he has to want to do this himself - and nagging won't get him there.

Where does he see himself in 5 years time? Try having that conversation with him. What job, lifestyle, existence. But it still may make no difference. I didnt wake up until I was 25. Only then did I see the point in education.

Coleybag Tue 04-Feb-14 22:16:11

I have just joined Mumsnet just now in the hope that I could find some advice for my dyspraxic teenage son. I was relieved and also upset to hear about your son. I can completely relate to what you are going through.

My son is 14, and has started to go into full teenage meltdown. He has hardly been at school since Christmas as he gets up most mornings so emotional that he is physically sick, and now refuses to go to school. I have to go and see his school tomorrow to try and get something sorted, as I am at my wits end.

The defiance doesn't stop at going to school though, as you say, it's getting him to do anything or show any interest in anything is a complete nightmare. A is in 3rd year at school, with exams next year. I am thinking that it will be a longer process for him, and he may not get all his qualifications at school, and he might have to do some at college. A's progress does seem to take longer than his piers, but he does get there, and it may just be the same for your son.

Good luck with the book, I'm away to look into it myself.

By the way I'm told A will get a scribe for his exams, you should look into this too if you haven't already done so.

Sorry I think I've rambled a bit here.

madhairday Wed 05-Feb-14 11:50:05

That sounds hard, Coleybag - are there problems at school socially? How are the school helping out regarding his non attendance? Good luck with the meeting.

SirRaymond yes, my dd has been known to forget to fetch her laptop hmm - it is difficult to find the balance between micromanaging and letting them stand on their own two feet, and when it goes wrong having to bail them's frustrating, for them as well as us. I hope the book helps, it is really good, it helped my dd a lot as well as us in understanding more about her. She enjoys quoting bits of it at us and loves how it explains her to a tee - I think it makes her feel more part of something and less out there on her own.

There is also a facebook group called DCD/Dyspraxia here which you may find helpful to join, lots of mums with teenage dyspraxics on there.

MrsBright - yes you're right that nagging won't get him there, but with dyspraxia it is a whole different ball games and it's important to form strategies which help children get on as best they can. Sometimes my dd says I nag too much, when actually all I am doing is ensuring she has everything she needs to cope with that day, and with the best will in the world if I left her to it things would get forgotten/lost/not bothered with.

Hope you're feeling a bit better about things today, MrsRaymond thanks

Coleybag Thu 06-Feb-14 21:04:52

Thank you Madhairday. The school was extremely helpful, and we have strategies in place for getting him back tomorrow and there is help there if he needs it. The school Dr is going to get involved, he has an appointment for youth counselling, and his GP gave us information on panic attacks.
I was at my wits end at the start of the week, but I feel we have all turned a bit of a corner now. I just REALLY hoping that A realises that the support is there and he can get back to school tomorrow. x

TeenAndTween Fri 07-Feb-14 21:44:39

Just wanted to say I know where you are on micromanaging.
DD1 is in y10 and I'm pretty certain she is dyspraxic, though she's not been assessed (she is allowed to use laptop for GCSEs though).

She still can't check her canteen card to see how much money is on it, and make sure she has money on her mobile phone.
She wants to work hard and do well, but she still can't manage her time effectively, work out which homework to do next, plan essays etc. I am having to do way more with her than I was expecting to at this point in her education, and DD2 is missing out as so much after school time still goes on DD1.

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