I cant bear my 17 year old son(17 Posts)
My first post on mumsnet as i just joined.
my son thinks he knows best ALL the time. He won't speak to the rest of the family. Has dreams of becoming a footballer which I told him to forget about which didnt go down well. Doesn't organise his time, sleeps all day, gets up late and does coursework into the night. Very hard to see any good in him, he's simply a horrid person, no affection in him. I did suggest mediation but he doesn't want that. He used to be quite funny and sweet as a young child, wish I could see traces of that child but its all gone. I told my my 22year old to move out as he was antisocial and had no interest in family and worried son number 2 is following in footsteps. Son 22yrs is now depressed, living alone. Any advice? Am I such a useless mum?
Don't be so hard on yourself. OK so it's unlikely that DS will become a professional footballer, but has he looked at becoming involved at a lower level, getting coaching badges or refereeing? Does he belong to a local club, could they point him in the tight direction?
I would try to encourage him in anything he shows an interest in.
When you say he's not affectionate, do you mean he no longer initiates hugs? My DS was like that, he used to get very angry and cry, at which point I'd grab him for a hug and he would sob like a baby. He's grown up now and remembers how horrible he felt at the time.
I think it sounds like pretty normal behaviour for that age.
Also, as Mrs HappyBee says, try to encourage him in things that interest him, dont be negative about it, that will only make him more distant.
My ds is 16 and keeps himself to himself most of the time. I ensure we have mealtimes together though so I get to see him then.
Don't you remember what it's like at that age? Family are mostly a huge embarrassment when you're a teen.
Also, meant to say you're not useless. It's just hard when you're not the centre of their world anymore. But that's as it should be.
He sounds like a lot of teenagers tbh. The sleep time thing is annonying but you say he spends half the night doing course work. So he is working but has managed to shift his body clock.
I would encourage the football interest too. getting involved at a local level sounds like an excellent idea. Is he involved with a team locally?
Hang in there. keep offering affection but in a casual way. a hug when he is half asleep. a "love you" with a casual bye kind of thing. non demanding stuff.
Most teenagers come out of these stages. You know he's was a lovely child. likely he is going to become a lovely adult. stick it out.
You're not useful, not at all. You care enough to be posting here, expressing concern about your DS and your relationship with him. That is not useless.
What others have said - he's being a pretty normal teenager - some behave like this younger, some older. It's very unlikely to last.
What the others said, too, about taking as relaxed an approach as you can to your DS. Remind him (I'm sure he doesn't need reminding) that you love him and build in time for sharing, such as meal times occasionally, TV, walks - whatever works in your family.
Sorry about older DS - do you see much of him? Again, he, too, is very young. Plenty of time to turn things round. I've posted on here about an older DS and had lots of good suggestions and support. Come on here, anytime, to do likewise (or there is a thread about further education if you're concerned about his education or training).
I also have 2 ds. Older ds much more complex to deal with and at 17 there were times I hated him too. He still doesnt tell us much, can be irritable and we have had lots of worries recently cos he has been depressed. He also slept all day,and sometimes still does tho its getting better. But at nearly 21 we can see he is actually a really nice guy despite all the faults and I am proud of him. We have tried to sit back and just be supportive-very difficult at times and I have wondered if I was too soft. His improving relationship with us makes me finally feel its getting better. Younger one very different-just gets on with things even when its tough and doesnt give us a hard time. seems down to different personalities rather than anything we've done.
Dont think you are a useless mum-boys are so difficult. Agree with other posters that the interest in football very positive
Thanks to all of u for taking the time to reply, I really appreciate it. Will keep on going, may post again with an update. Thanks again.
like the others I think it would help if you tried to see some good in him and focus on that? something you could enjoy together perhaps?
"very hard to see good in him"- but he does coursework into the night. isn't that something good? if he had totally given up he wouldn't be doing coursework at all
does he know that you are proud of him for doing his coursework?
and he is interested in football- that's another positive? have you tried sharing that interest with him?
(I am not interested in football but I do try for the sake of my 13yo- we need to have some kind of common ground)
what made you so angry with him that you made that comment about him never being a footballer? of course you are almost certainly right, chances are he won't, but normally as a parent you'd be saying something on the lines of "of course that's very hard and competitive but if it doesn't work out for you there will be loads of other ways you can use that interest and in the meantime you need to get as many qualifications as you can"
they are so fragile at this age about their chances of making their way in the world and of course a lot of that does come out as fake arrogance
I've come to the conclusion that you're supposed to dislike them intensely. It's preparation for letting them go. Just think how hard it would be when they leave home if you still loved them as intensely as you do when they're little... Instead, nature makes sure they become hard to live with and unpleasant, so when they're ready to leave the nest, you're more than happy to give them a little shove!
OP, can you tell us of anything positive about him?
There's a new post in the Media requests thread looking for people with troublesome teens - can you take a look and get in touch if this is you?
I can't find media requests! Could someone post a link please?
OP - this is so sad.
17 is the absolute peak of awfulness for teenage boys.
22 is about the age when they are lovely again.
Please, please try and build bridges with your older son. No wonder he is depressed.
With the 17 year old, ignore all behaviour that doesn't impact on you directly. Let him sleep and study as he is for the moment, but don't wait on him or tidy up after him. Allow him his space in his own room, but set clear rules for the rest of the house.
I don't think either of mine spoke much at 17 - they mostly grunt, unless lecturing the rest of us about how little we know about life etc . They all think they know everything at that age.
If he says he wants to be a footballer, ask him what he is doing to achieve that? Encourage him to get out and play. There is nothing wrong with smiling and saying "great idea, are you training anywhere/with anyone?" He will change his mind several times before he is 20.
You just have to ride it out, try to smile, try to find something positive to say and ignore the rest. It is hard, but the alternative is to end up alienated from your DC.
Many a true word and good advice here. He does play in a local club some weekends but the reason I said he should give up the football is because he has missed training several times as he has overslept or not taken the right bus and was late and wants me to keep taking him. Is that unreasonable of me? Wouldn't u expect him to set an alarm and plan journey at least? Then he's found a v expensive footie training course and expects me to pay it rather than find himself a little job or something. So it's part his attitude. There's more things going on which I won't go in to. Also husband v unwell so I'm breadwinner and working long hours. I would like a bit more understanding from him but he's actually angry with his dad for being unwell and not working. On positive side he keeps clean, doesnt drink or smoke, attends college and stays out of trouble. I will take all the advice on board and try out some of it as it is good and full of love and forgiveness which is what family should be!
he's 17 they find it hard to be organised
I wouldn't take him to football, no, but try and make it easier for him to get himself there? Eg if his alarm doesn't go off, go and wake him. Check out the bus times/routes. If he wants to do the course, could you pay half and support him finding a job to pay the other half?
Really if his worst things are being grumpy, untidy and disorganised he just sounds normal. I know it's maddening (especially the sleeping thing) but try and stay positive.
I have a 17 year old ds. I feel your pain with the know-it-all attitude.
But really, EastisEast it sounds like you have a pretty good lad on your hands here. Yes, they're lazy and disorganised at this age. Yes, they believe that money for expensive football courses is just waiting in your wallet to be spent on them and of course, they know more than we do. (I knew far more than my parents at 17).
But your post made me feel very sad. You say he's 'horrid'. You say you feel no affection for him. You tell him to give up on his dreams. But now you say he's actually terrified because his father is seriously ill.
I hope you don't mind me suggesting that a lot of this problem (50%?) seems to be stemming from you and the way you are looking at your ds1 and ds2. You seem to be looking at both boys in a very negative light. Are your opinions really justified that they are just horrid antisocial people? You must be under enormous pressure with a very sick partner, trying to support your family while working full time. Could it be that you too are at risk of depression? . Have your sons really changed that much? Or is it just you that needs a bit of support while dealing with a horrid situation?
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