My son is 15. He was a happy child growing up. A great student, use to ask his father and me to help him study, and use to love to read and play basketball. He comes from a loving 2 parent family. He is now a freshman, but middle school turned out to be a horrible experience for him. He had no friends, apparently started insulting the other kids and giving nicknames, (he thought all in fun, since all the other kids were doing it) and by eighth grade, he had no friends at all, and was being picked on by his friends from grade school that he had known for several years. I wound up taking him out of school right before the end of the school year. He is now home schooled, but it looks like he doesn't ever want to go back to school. I hate for him to miss out on the experiences of high school, but then part of me thinks the way things are these days, maybe he's better off at home. He has no interests anymore though. Its a struggle for him to leave the house, he won't read anymore, he does his homework and his getting A's, but when we have conversations, they turn into arguments, so I hate talking to him anymore or regret starting one. We tried therapy, but all the doctor wanted to do after meeting him the first 5 seconds was prescribe medication and pushed us out the door after ten minutes. Found out that is all the doctor does. On the second visit I asked him if he tests kids for any disorders or if therapy was an option and he said no. Yet I saw several children coming and going to see the other doctors. When I asked about seeing another doctor in the group, I was told that wasn't an option. I am looking for a therapist that takes our insurance and actually wants to help him, but haven't had any luck so far. I use to think this was a faze, but I'm starting to worry that this isn't something he will outgrow. Please tell me I'm not alone. I'm so sad for him and suggest we do outings and he isn't intersted, he actually get mads at me for suggesting things. I want my happy-go-lucky kid back. Any suggestions?
Hi and sorry your going through this. Having been a 15 year old boy myself and from all you wrote, i think your spending to much time around him which is not leading to his independence. I dont feel home school is the best thing as he will become to absorbed with his immediate surrounding which is his home. If my parents took me out of school because of other students and had me stay home, i would have jumped at the chance as i hated school. Its already starting to affect him negatively by him being moody.
Part of me being of strong charactor now was sticking with the school atmosphere and working out my own problems.
Sounds like your smothering him
It seems unlikely he'll "outgrow" this if he doesn't have a chance to practice peer social skills and get back on track that way.
You paint a picture of a child who pushed long term friends away through a period of being rude and mean. It sounds like that's not irrecoverable - he obviously used to have the social skills to attract and keep long term friends, he just suddenly turned negative and sarcastic and drove them away.
Is there a home school group or maybe a ju jitsu group you could get him in to where he has the chance to be around peers?
Hi there. Oh, your post makes me sad. I hope this turns around soon for your son.
Yes, look for a psychologist to provide talk therapy for your son. They don't prescribe medicine but will work with the psychiatrist end fo things (that does). Usually these two professionals work together to give full treatment to someone as it does sound like some symptoms of depression are going on here.
I agree with Rockrose that finding something that allows him some release and interaction would be great. Yes, ju jitsu or karate are great options. And these days, homeschooling is more common and indeed there are groups that get together. Look in your area. Ask around. They do things like a parent that speaks fluent French may take a group to teach them French. Things like that.
good luck and stay in touch so we can hear how it is progressing.
Definitely does sound like he is depressed, and I certainly agree with the above statements.
I was curious how his grades were in middle school. He exhibits some of the traits of Autism. ( See this link - http://www.webmd.com/brain/autism/autism-symptoms) And kids with Autism can do pretty well grade wise. Where as kids with intelligence and ADD start to fall apart about middle school. Things like math grades begin to suffer. Here is a link on ADD - http://www.help4adhd.org/about/what/WWK8
Point being is that it is hard to help someone if you don't know what the problem is. You definitely need to find another doctor. I would certainly look at going over the head of the original doctor for a referral. Because this does not look like something that your son is going to outgrow without some help. Best wishes.
What is sad, the other kids did the exact same thing he is guilty of, yet it was okay for them. Trust me, I used to volunteer at the schools he attended, so I would see it first hand. In fact, he was never mean like the other kids were. They would physically try and hurt other kids, but he wouldn't have anything to do with that. He just tried to follow suit in the criticizing area, but I think because he was considered a nerd since he was more naive then the other kids, he seemed to be a target. I also think he was not as confident either and it showed.
Thank you for your post. I am thinking you are right about depression. Actually he was always a good student, In fact in 6th grade he was nominated for National Junior Honor Society. He stayed on it until the last few months of eighth grade when things started to fall apart. I also think you might be right about Autism or Asberger (sp?) Syndrome. I noticed some oddities when he was little, but he was always happy and well adjusted so I never thought anymore about that until now. He always scored high in Math and English and they still seem to be the classes he excels at.
Again, thank you for your post. Hopefully we'll find the right people to help us out.
Actually Life360, my son started having panic attacks for the first time during the last few months of 8th grade (last year). Things got so bad, I had to pull him out of school because he missed so much school since I couldn't get him out of the car. And this is a kid who never missed a day of school since Kingergarten. He use to love school, was never sick, and never wanted to miss anything and use to go out everyday to shoot baskets. My son is 6'1, 185 lbs, so its kind of hard to make him do anything, but I think going to school at this point in his life would make things worse. I will look into getting help for him, and trust me, I am more than happy to sign him up for anything he wants to do, in fact I'm constantly suggesting outings, but the problem right now is getting him out of the house. He sits on his laptop most of the day doing his homework, and I'm usually in another part of the house, so I try and give him space.
Specialmom, thank you for your concern and suggestions. I will keep on him and find the help he needs. From the comments I received, this isn't something he is going to outgrow and that I do have reason to worry and take action.
Again, I really appreciate your feedback and will keep you posted.
I am sorry that you are going through this. There is not much worse than seeing our children suffer. My daughter, who is 6, has autism. When she was 2 she talked and acted like a normal child, but a year later her speech was almost completely gone. It was very discouraging. It took us 2 years after that to get her a diagnosis and ever since then things have been going much better. In order to find a doctor that would take us seriously we moved to a different state. I had to fight the pediatrician in our old state just for a referral to a speech therapist. I tell you this not because I think your son has autism (there is no way I could know that), but because it is very important to find a doctor that will take you seriously and give you a diagnosis if one is needed. It is nearly impossible to get the help you need without that.
My daughter's occupational therapist explained to me the advantages of homeschooling some high school children with autism. It does make the person more comfortable and helps them focus, BUT I would not allow my daughter to do that. I believe that it is very important that she learns to function in the real world despite her disability. And that includes interpersonal communication that she finds uncomfortable. No, she doesn't have to go to parties or run around with her friends all weekend long, but she does have to thrive in a school setting. It is unfortunate that your son is not in school because the school can be your greatest advocate between you and his doctor. I do understand your decision to take him out of school though. It sounds like it just wasn't going well. The school should have performed their own evaluations and gave their own input. Many doctors rely heavily on this and take it into consideration. If they do see he is struggling a good school will help him and give him an IEP. They will come up with a plan to help him be successful. They certainly should not expect him to just push through it, and if they do then they are not doing what they are supposed to. I'm sorry the school system failed you and your son. The good news is there is still hope for him and I hope you find an answer.
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