13 yo son aggressive, surly and mom's miserable
I am a very frustrated single mom. My 13 year old son, with whom I have had a wonderful relationship with up until this year, has become aggressive, mean, manipulative. He lies constantly and has recently started threatening to kill or hurt me.
Major events in the past year: big move half way across the country; I have been in a relationship; school is significantly more challenging here.
He is a smart kid, athletically talented, good looking and can charm the pants off most people (men, women, children, pets alike). He is not doing well in school (he tests horribly). He can't even seem to care about baseball (the only thing he's been passionate about, ever.) All he wants to do is sit in his bedroom and look up electronic products he can buy (or I can buy for him), watch Dog the Bounty Hunter or play video games, but even the xbox is not appealing anymore. I need help figuring out how to help him find his "give-a-damn" about anything. It seems to me he is throwing away his life by not caring and I lash out at him because I CARE, even though he doesn't.
As I'm sure you know, lashing out at him is not going to help anything, and it's not reasonable to excuse it on the basis of your caring more than he does. By the way, he may care more than you think - be careful about assuming he does not care on the basis of his behavior. His life has ben turned upside down, and it is not surprising this would result in a period of unsettledness. In addition to all the cahnges, he's at a very important developmental transition that would bring challenges even if everything else in his life had stayed the same. Bring him to a child/adolescent mental health clinician for an evaluation - don't keep trying to manage this without professional assistance.
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