He seems to want us to 'nag' him still(4 Posts)
DS, 16 years is in Year 12 & we assumed he would just get on with his studies etc. However he does a lot of faffing, sitting on loo, tidying room, coming down for snacks and when he is supposedly working, he finds it very difficult to focus.
He had some poor marks at the beginning of the year, (for him, he's an able student) and we understood this to be just adjusting to the change from being 'spoonfed' at GCSE to the ability to apply oneself to A level coursework etc.
He does seem happy at the moment and his levels of anxiety are fine ( this has been an issue in the past) and does have friends. We've talked about getting on with it and reasons behind his low motivation - he feels he's taken the right subjects etc. I've even (though certain it wouldn't suit him) suggested he change to vocational courses and forget uni for now!!
Despite this, OH and I find ourselves asking him what work he's doing and prompting / encouraging /cajoling to go and do bits. We've even teased him and asked if he actually likes our constant niggling.
My concern is - how is he going to learn to be I dependant at Uni if he needs someone to say 'leave your phone and get in' all the time?
Leaving him to just do nothing is not an option - the AS exam grades impact enormously on the A2s the following year?
What can we do to encourage him to self- motivate?
It is a hard one. Exhausted after nagging my DS through his GCSE's, I said that for A levels I expected him to manage his work himself. He has chosen them and if he wants to go to the next stage of education he has to do well and it is up to him.
I don't see him working, but with their timetables often they get to work during the day. I still do a bit of nagging which does not go down well.
Maybe up the pressure for this year if he needs it and then ease off next year.
Has he stayed at the same school? if so maybe it is hard to get into a new pattern of work in the same environment, it has only been a term.
Mine has gone to college so his expectations are that he is in a different work pattern now and is treated more like an adult.
I think I was very like your son. If I could go back and offer my parents advice for back then I'd say to back off and let him fail for a year. The shock would help, and he can resit a year without damaging his long term prospects. My parents kept nagging and I ended up failing later instead - I needed to learn that effort was necessary, and sometimes a shock is necessary for that.
But you know your own son better than I do!
I have a similar worry about the future though my 16yo DS is keeping up in school. I have asked him if he wants to be nagged about homework and revision and he says “yes”!! But I don’t cajole – I only remind, and it’s up to him to do it or not. And we have a deal that I will nag so long as he doesn’t snarl at me when I nag him. He also works better if I’m in the same room so I will offer to sit with him. The thing is I’m a terrible procrastinator and self-distractor myself and I have no self discipline at all. I would love to have a mother to nag me into doing what I need to do! So I’m afraid I take advantage of DS – I say things like “I have this work to do, how about we sit together and you do your maths homework / revise your English while I read this stuff.” This gets me to do my work as well. I don’t know how either of us are going cope when he goes to university! DS does manage to work in school where there are fewer distractions and temptations for screens and books, just as I work better at the office (where I have forbidden myself to look at MumsNet )
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