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Tween and teen help behavior issues regaining family sanity

(8 Posts)
Brighteyes27 Tue 04-Apr-17 09:52:06

I have DD 12 & DS 13. Having a hard time with them which has got worse of late.
Please be gentle I was ill for awhile so a lot has been left to DH who has more laid back approach to parenting than I have and he also works long days and hours. I feel largely ok now and want to get our lives on track again.
I feel weary with the DC's and day to day life at the moment. I only work pt. I feel I am carrying D.C.'s on my back and life should be getting easier but it isn't. The house is such a tip and it takes ages to tidy as so much mess laying around and so much thoughtlessness.
Just in time for Easter Hols it seems to be really hard work again. DD is having lots of hassle at school with ex friends (so she doesn't have any friends especially outside of school). But still does 2 or 3 after school activities. I am trying to cut her some slack at home and to be fair DS's behavior is much worse. I am taking her to school every day and collecting her 3 days a week which is hard work (they are both at different schools). Every weekend I have to nag them about homework and rooms. I have explained they do nothing around home, tried confiscating iPads phones until homework is done which ends in a battle every week. Also both play in sports teams so very little time to be wasted arguing about homework when we could be out doing something nice enjoying life either as a family or they could go out with friends.
DS seems fairly popular at school and seems to be doing ok.
They are both so lazy all they do when at home which is most of the time is mainly lounge around on iPads or phones the rest of the time they argue, tell tales on each other, wind each other up fight with each other etc. The last 2 nights they have had a argument when they have gone to bed which has resulted in DS kicking hell out of DD's door. Last night DH rushed up and smacked them both (which I am not in favor of) he is fed up as neither will listen both blame each other, tell lies and both shout and argue a lot.
If they make a drink they often spill it on work surface or floor won't dream of wiping it up unless I see them do it and nag them into it. If they help themselves to a snack they sometimes make a mess with that and will put any packaging anywhere in the house rather than the bin. Both lie about doing it etc. Their bedrooms are a mess dirty clothes not in clothes baskets etc etc etc.
I am fed up. Any advice other than taking all gadgets off them permanently, sending them to bed at 7pm every night or my running away? I try and give them both individual time to talk and listen about day to day life at school with friends. I think DS maybe jealous that recently I am concentrating more on his sister due to worry over hassle she's been having inside and out of school from her ex friends escalating but their is no excuse for this rubbish. Last night I asked DS to make drinks to go with our tea (while I was cooking). He came through on about the 6th time iPad in hand. Had to be asked to put it down and concentrate. He did reluctantly and grumpily then ended up spilling it all over work surface (which he made a very half baked attempt to clean up after being reminded). But had spilled some on the floor as well which he denied but it must have been him and I ended up having to clean it. DD had reluctantly fed the dog and laid the table earlier but had also to be asked to do it several times. Advice on where to start with these two please be gentle with me. I feel like we are back to toddlerhood but with none of the nice bits and unless we can sort things out now life will get worse as they get older. Also DH may end up working away mid week for next few months so I need to get our house in order ASAP. Thanks

mummytime Tue 04-Apr-17 10:12:36

Teenagers can be mega thoughtless.
But smacking at this age is a big No! Sorry but it is totally inappropriate.

I would call a family meeting. You work out what your specific issues are, and see what strategies they have to solve them.

Laundry - how about not washing anything unless it's in the Laundry basket? So if they want that T-shirt and its on the floor it won't be clean, even having to wear dirty school uniform. Better would be having a routine and they do their own washing.
If they spill and leave a mess on the work top - then give them the cleaning cloth and get them to clean it.
Can your DD get to school without a lift - if so then withdraw lifts unless she does the basics.

Finally do you acknowledge when they get things right? I might even go back to a star chart for their chores.

Brighteyes27 Tue 04-Apr-17 11:47:52

Thanks mummy time I was thinking about this for tonight. I really don't approve of smacking at any age. DH lost his dad in Jan so is still grieving and has high stress with work and to compound things we are having an extended visit from MIL for 11 days at Easter. So all this and her visiting will be a nightmare.

Yes I have tried positive parenting DS is very bright and cottoned on to it and said I was just trying to treat them like babies so didn't work.

Yes DD can walk to school from our house problem is the last main part of the walk everyone from our area uses this route which is the safest and quickest route so the girls giving her the hassle are around as are friends of theirs who also join in with the low level bullying. It was my idea to give her lifts as often as I could (thinking it was short term) to keep her out of the way for a few weeks (which it's been now). Last night I was working late so she walked. She didn't see her ex friends but another girl who is friends with them had been shouting things at her. She's only 12 but taller than her peers so looks much older and I don't want her to be on her own receiving potential abuse from these girls, their friends and possibly older boys.

mummytime Tue 04-Apr-17 16:07:31

What is the school doing about the bullying? What help is your DD getting?

Brighteyes27 Tue 04-Apr-17 17:41:15

Nothing. She asked me not to contact the school incase it made things worse as she has seen this happen with others. So I was keeping an eye on it.
Eventually she agreed I could email school and ask if she could be moved in lessons as she had different lessons sat with three of the girls. This has been done so lessons are much better.
But out of school she has had nuisance calls, lots of wind up type questions on social media but nothing too inflammatory that I could really act on and the worst stuff she didn't save and didn't show me. As she thought they would get back friends again.
Now it's just sly nasty comments when they pass her they are desperate to get with the popular people but are only i the periphery but others are trying to get with them who are on the very outer periphery so these girls are making comments etc.

Brighteyes27 Tue 04-Apr-17 20:20:06

Well the family meeting didn't go well DS came home late due to playing an additional game of football for his school team, which we knew of. He came in snuck up upstairs with his phone when we thought he was in the shower he had locked himself in the bathroom with his phone on the pretext that he was on the toilet and going in the shower. After over 30 minutes messing about in there he came down for tea still not showered. Ate his tea in silence or begrudgingly giving one word answers. We then had a chat about what we expected which to be fair wasn't much. He got very defensive argumentative went off the rails stormed off upstairs in a mood saying he was going to watch something on his iPad then do some homework. I said no please could you do your homework or have a shower first please and then go in your iPad as I would rather your homework takes priority if it's due in tomorrow. Also your sister will need a shower and to wash her hair when she comes in from football. He ignored us stormed upstairs nearly pushed me down the stairs and has been up there since no homework has been done and he hasn't had a shower and it's now 8:15. I confiscated both his iPad and phone when I went to collect DD from football. DH says just leave him let him sink at school but he is a bright lad and I would really like him to do as well as he can at schooll not just make minimum effort. He is at a grammar school but just seems to be coasting and doesn't seem to care less. I am so fed up of his awful attitude lack of respect and behavior.

Brighteyes27 Tue 04-Apr-17 21:17:56

Well it's after 9pm last interaction with him was when I went to see him to ask about him doing his homework going in the shower or putting his football kit in the wash. He called me a bitch. He's still not been downstairs or had any interaction with us downstairs all night really apart from arguing and storming off. He has no tv in his room so only reading for entertainment.
I feel dreadful and I feel stressed and totally unable to relax. It's a no win situation with him. DH has been giving him a lift to station on his way to work as he leaves early and catches a train to school but every morning he's ready later and later and more and more disorganised recently so DH stressing and running late for work and he has a long journey. I said this morning if he wasn't ready and organised in the morning by 7:20 he can make his own way by walking there. Which he used to do walking with a friend but he's now left the school.

mummytime Wed 05-Apr-17 07:46:15

Okay.
You need to be an adult and deal with your DDs bullying.
Your DS needs to be told clearly that speaking to you like that is unacceptable. If he's not ready in time for his lift DH needs to leave without him. If he is then late for school then he has to face the consequences. BUT I wonder if he is stressed from school.
Can either you or his Dad get him m to talk? Maybe during a car journey? Or whilst doing a task. Try to make time to talk.

With teens being interested in their lives, listening without interfering, and building relationship is key.

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