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  1. #1
    Administrator matty_f's Avatar
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    Good parent/bad parent (teenager content)

    Anyone here got teenage kids? My boy's hit his teens and is a nightmare at the moment, very aggressive, very angry/moody and very hard to get along with.

    We've generally had a really good relationship up until the last few months where I've seen a big change in how he treats me and (particularly) his mum. We've never smacked the kids but recently there have been a couple of flashpoints in rows where it could easily have come to blows, I guess he's testing the alpha-male status or something.

    I find it really difficult, and question a lot of what I do as his parent to see what I could do better, but a lot of the time I find his behavior so opposed to my values and behaviors I really struggle to empathise with him or find a common ground.

    I know teenagers are notoriously difficult but I worry that all the anger he seems to have will manifest itself in something bad, or that I'll miss something that's up with him because we're not close anymore.

    I find it's difficult to build his confidence because I'm constantly having to address things he does, particularly how he treats his mum, so we end up arguing all the time.

    Has anyone else gone through, or going through similar, and if so how do you approach it?


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  3. #2
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    Have you spoken tothe school? Hows his behaviour there? Is he getting a hard time? Coping with work? Is he at clubs that the could be issues with? Is he getting teased about something? He may have health questions or worries he doesnt know how to talk about
    I dont go for the teenager argument, theres always something behind anger and attitude like that. It may be something small and insignificant to you but a huge issue for him.
    Doesnt mean he should get away with a bad attitude, I never smacked my kids either but they were punished. Usually playstation/xbox controllers were removed. In fact my 20 year old lost his the other day 😂 until his room was tidied.
    Try a father/son day? Something of his choosing, a film and food somewhere special, TGI's, hard rock etc. Dont mention his issues, he will if he wants to, build up that relationship again and just have fun. Try and do something every few weeks so he can talk one on one if he wants to.

    Also let his mum deal with how he speaks to her, if she does it and you do it its a double whammy for him. Ask her to deal with it at the time, and deal with it consistently. He will then know his boundarys and its his choice to push it or not.
    Its never easy, theres no,right answers. Just go,with your gut id say. Good luck!

  4. #3
    Administrator matty_f's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mrs. S View Post
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    Have you spoken tothe school? Hows his behaviour there? Is he getting a hard time? Coping with work? Is he at clubs that the could be issues with? Is he getting teased about something? He may have health questions or worries he doesnt know how to talk about
    I dont go for the teenager argument, theres always something behind anger and attitude like that. It may be something small and insignificant to you but a huge issue for him.
    Doesnt mean he should get away with a bad attitude, I never smacked my kids either but they were punished. Usually playstation/xbox controllers were removed. In fact my 20 year old lost his the other day 😂 until his room was tidied.
    Try a father/son day? Something of his choosing, a film and food somewhere special, TGI's, hard rock etc. Dont mention his issues, he will if he wants to, build up that relationship again and just have fun. Try and do something every few weeks so he can talk one on one if he wants to.

    Also let his mum deal with how he speaks to her, if she does it and you do it its a double whammy for him. Ask her to deal with it at the time, and deal with it consistently. He will then know his boundarys and its his choice to push it or not.
    Its never easy, theres no,right answers. Just go,with your gut id say. Good luck!
    School is fine, glowing reports and his teachers love him. He loses his Xbox and phone when we need to discipline, and he gets more time with me than either of his sisters gets.

    I tend to agree with there being an underlying issue, you make a good suggestion about not forcing the issue and letting him get it out when he's ready to.

    Does drive you mental, though!
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  5. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by matty_f View Post
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    School is fine, glowing reports and his teachers love him. He loses his Xbox and phone when we need to discipline, and he gets more time with me than either of his sisters gets.

    I tend to agree with there being an underlying issue, you make a good suggestion about not forcing the issue and letting him get it out when he's ready to.

    Does drive you mental, though!
    Im a bit of a wierdo, id love to go back to working with teens, especially troubled teens.

  6. #5
    Thinking back I was an utter dick as a teenager. At the time I thought it was smart to talk down to parents and generally treat them like **** but you do grow out of it.

    It's easy to say with hindsight but it's an awkward age for a boy. Girls suddenly become a lot more interesting and in the absence of knowing how to speak to them showing off by taking the piss out of supposedly easy targets was a misguided way to try and impress.

    If there's a bit of anger and attitude is there a way to try and channel that? A martial art or similar? Good way to burn off a bit energy and channel frustration in a controlled environment.

    There's a whole load of physical and mental changes going on and as he gets to grips with them he'll calm down. As long as you keep an eye and make sure it isn't, or doesn't develop into, anything deeper he'll be fine.
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  7. #6
    Administrator hibee_girl's Avatar
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    I was once told that boys get surges of testosterone at certain points which make their behaviour worse, I think I was told 3, 7, 10, 13 and I don't know if it's true but it did fit it with the awful times I had with my own son though we're yet to hit 13!

    I normally find if there's something bothering him it'll all come pouring out in a fit of emotions days later at the most random time when really it would have been easier to just tell me what was wrong at the time instead of causing world war 3!

    I was also going to suggest clubs if he's not already in some, I know that with my son his swimming really calms him down. I've also been told that the best time to have a conversation with them is in the car so that you don't have forced eye contact, they're maybe more likely to open up if. Again I don't know if that's true but could be worth a try.

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    @hibs.net private member BroxburnHibee's Avatar
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    Been going through this the last couple of years with my son Matty so you're not alone.

    Lots of good points above I can only echo them. Is there any girlfriends in the picture (that was certainly an issue with my laddie)

    Its hard trying to find a balance between strict when its needed and being a shoulder for them when required although if he's anything like mine then he'll tell you there's nothing wrong.

    Its a hard time for children dealing with all the changes going on. We've had a lot of stuff to deal with but the school helped us along with it.

    Getting him to talk in the car is a trick I use often so definitely try that.

    Thankfully things have started to get better for us. His school work has improved dramatically so it feels like we're getting over the worst of it.
    Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, chocolate in one hand, vodka in the other, body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming, "WOO HOO what a ride!"

  9. #8
    @hibs.net private member sleeping giant's Avatar
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    My laddie started acting like an erse for about a year when he was 15.
    I also thought that he was challenging the alpha male status of the house and was worried that it was going to end up coming to blows .
    He was just being disrespectful with the way he spoke to everyone in the house. The Wife would constantly be upset as the son she cherished was now being nasty (nearly ) to her.

    He wouldn't listen to anything we said or take any advice.

    I always had a really close relationship with him and there is a lot of love in this house but that stage broke my heart.

    It felt like he hated us for a while and couldn't understand why. School seemed fine and he was getting on really well.

    As suddenly as he changed into this monster , he changed back.

    He's back to being his usual happy , confident , funny , caring self who is just starting out on his life's journey.
    Doing well at school , just started driving lessons , part time job , wee bit cash , girlfriend and an excellent career opportunity interview next week.

    I think it was just hormones but it was heartbreaking at the time.

  10. #9
    @hibs.net private member sleeping giant's Avatar
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    Can I just add that I didn't act like that when I was a teenager as my mum didn't take any nonsense and would have slapped my coupon if I were ever to disrespect her.

    We also are not a smacking family as such.

    Might be a connection there :



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  11. #10
    Administrator matty_f's Avatar
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    Really reassuring to read some experiences on here, think it needs patience and I probably need to choose my battles with him rather than calling him out every time he steps out of line.
    http://hibscomebackison.blogspot.co.uk/ - Read my blog "So A Season Starts.. " - Updated TODAY 03/08/15

  12. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by matty_f View Post
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    Really reassuring to read some experiences on here, think it needs patience and I probably need to choose my battles with him rather than calling him out every time he steps out of line.
    You need to learn 'the look' Matty! One of my looks does waaay more than my voice 😂

  13. #12
    @hibs.net private member Mon Dieu4's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mrs. S View Post
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    You need to learn 'the look' Matty! One of my looks does waaay more than my voice 😂
    I'm 37 and my Dad still just needs to give me the "look" and I shut up

  14. #13
    Administrator matty_f's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mrs. S View Post
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    You need to learn 'the look' Matty! One of my looks does waaay more than my voice 😂
    He'd need to look in my direction for that to work! At the moment when he's in a mood he'll turn his back and just ignore. It's a lot of fun.
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  15. #14
    resident moaning git DaveF's Avatar
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    Tell him he's going to Tynecastle unless he gets the finger oot.

  16. #15
    resident moaning git DaveF's Avatar
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    My oldest has always been a pain in the arse. He'll soon be 18 and is now fairly civil and talkative so it does end...eventually. Mind you, compared to my 13 year old hormonal daughter, the laddie was a breeze :-D

  17. #16
    Administrator matty_f's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DaveF View Post
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    Tell him he's going to Tynecastle unless he gets the finger oot.
    http://hibscomebackison.blogspot.co.uk/ - Read my blog "So A Season Starts.. " - Updated TODAY 03/08/15

  18. #17
    Scottish Cup Victory - Witness 2016 Scouse Hibby's Avatar
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    A difficult time that many parents seem to experience, fortunately I have no real experience of the issues you describe to comment on.

    My own son is 23 now and the transformation to teenage years was pretty smooth.
    One of my closest friends often comments to me how he wishes he had the same bond and togetherness that we have as he and his son were and still are often at loggerheads even into his twenties.

    This type of situation does show you ridiculous the "I blame the parents" tag is as Matty has described his son often doing things that go against his own values and how he has been brought up. Not that I am suggesting he has done anything sinister but you can see how easy it is for that teenage aggression to manifest in ways their parents would never behave.

    A very interesting thread with some varying degrees of scale. Parenting is certainly a stern test of your metal.

  19. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by matty_f View Post
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    He'd need to look in my direction for that to work! At the moment when he's in a mood he'll turn his back and just ignore. It's a lot of fun.
    Oh Matty this look penetrates, they dont need to be facing you :)

    Ive been very lucky with my kids, they are all pretty laid back and easy going. Biggest problem was their untidiness and laziness but rarely have i had attitude from them. We are all still very close and still have a laugh together.

    Having said that I now have a 20 year old who much prefers wine, women and song to his studies and we've had many an argument about the house not being his personal brothel/youth hostel/local pub etc. He needs a job and a flat ....soon!

  20. #19
    Administrator matty_f's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mrs. S View Post
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    Oh Matty this look penetrates, they dont need to be facing you :)

    Ive been very lucky with my kids, they are all pretty laid back and easy going. Biggest problem was their untidiness and laziness but rarely have i had attitude from them. We are all still very close and still have a laugh together.

    Having said that I now have a 20 year old who much prefers wine, women and song to his studies and we've had many an argument about the house not being his personal brothel/youth hostel/local pub etc. He needs a job and a flat ....soon!
    To be fair we've had a good relationship until recently, which is where the frustration comes in. I remember my dad having a hell of a time with my sister when she hit her teens, how they came through that without murdering each other I'll never know, and they're really close again now, so I'm trying to keep perspective on it.

    I'll need to work on a penetrating look though!
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  21. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by matty_f View Post
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    To be fair we've had a good relationship until recently, which is where the frustration comes in. I remember my dad having a hell of a time with my sister when she hit her teens, how they came through that without murdering each other I'll never know, and they're really close again now, so I'm trying to keep perspective on it.

    I'll need to work on a penetrating look though!
    Just tell him if he doesn't start respecting his Mum he has to go 12 rounds with me before getting on the bus next month.
    I fell in love with football as I was later to fall in love with women,. Suddenly, uncritically giving no thought to the pain it could bring. - Nick Hornby

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    @hibs.net private member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pretty Boy View Post
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    Just tell him if he doesn't start respecting his Mum he has to go 12 rounds with me before getting on the bus next month.
    12 rounds! I've never seen you buy 1 round before S 😀

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    I'd have been soundly skelped if I'd ever dared to get vaguely physical with my parents. Never did me any harm as they say

  24. #23
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    I can only speak about my teens and how I kind I lashed out in a way trying to find myself. I think the thing that changed me the most was music I went from happy go lucky pop music into mean Moody angry anti rules etc heavy metal rock thank God I never got into the rave scene. I now have a 13 year old daughter who drives me crazy demented even.

  25. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by matty_f View Post
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    To be fair we've had a good relationship until recently, which is where the frustration comes in. I remember my dad having a hell of a time with my sister when she hit her teens, how they came through that without murdering each other I'll never know, and they're really close again now, so I'm trying to keep perspective on it.

    I'll need to work on a penetrating look though!
    Relax, you are over thinking this. It's all normal. You are just a really bad parent.
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  26. #25
    Has he still got a user ID for Hibs.net?

    I'd consider banning him, or at least blocking him from the holy ground if I was you.

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    Administrator matty_f's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Danderhall Hibs View Post
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    Has he still got a user ID for Hibs.net?

    I'd consider banning him, or at least blocking him from the holy ground if I was you.
    It's OK, we've spoken about this already.

    At least he'll know I care!
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  28. #27
    Matty

    My son turned 16 on the 10th of March, been a hellish year to an extent with him. I had this recommended and cant recommend it enough.


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  29. #28
    Quote Originally Posted by Pretty Boy View Post
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    Thinking back I was an utter dick as a teenager.
    So was I but I think there is an onus on parents to deal with the situation with intelligence and a bit of compassion.

    I'm now at the age that my parents were when I was in my late teens and I now understand a lot of the things that they did. There is still a lot that they did (or didn't do) that didn't address or help the situation. I'll make mistakes with mine but I'd like to think that I'll think things through and try to take emotion out of actions.

    Saying all that, as much as I'd be horrified for my son to do a fraction of the nonsense that I got up to, I still look back on my teens and early twenties with pure nostalgia (what I can remember)!

  30. #29
    Administrator matty_f's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Theinsider View Post
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    Matty

    My son turned 16 on the 10th of March, been a hellish year to an extent with him. I had this recommended and cant recommend it enough.


    http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/1...-making-of-men
    Nice one, I'll give it a read.
    http://hibscomebackison.blogspot.co.uk/ - Read my blog "So A Season Starts.. " - Updated TODAY 03/08/15

  31. #30
    Administrator matty_f's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Beefster View Post
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    So was I but I think there is an onus on parents to deal with the situation with intelligence and a bit of compassion.

    I'm now at the age that my parents were when I was in my late teens and I now understand a lot of the things that they did. There is still a lot that they did (or didn't do) that didn't address or help the situation. I'll make mistakes with mine but I'd like to think that I'll think things through and try to take emotion out of actions.

    Saying all that, as much as I'd be horrified for my son to do a fraction of the nonsense that I got up to, I still look back on my teens and early twenties with pure nostalgia (what I can remember)!
    I agree with you about the parent's role, it's not easy though!

    I generally try and chat to him about what's happened after there's been an incident. He's a very, very clever lad - much sharper than I was at his age, and after a lot of discussion he generally accepts things and understands what's gone wrong. The trouble is the next day it can be like that conversation never happened!

    I was fairly easy going as a teenager, didn't get into much trouble, got on with my parents - my sister, on the other hand, was a ****ing nightmare when she hit her teens. My dad and her used to have massive rows. I'm doing my best not to have history repeat itself.

    The other thing to point out is that in the moments that he's not in a rage about something, he's great company and both his mum and I go out of our way to find positives about him to talk about, so that he's not just hearing how bad he is when there's an incident. He goes from thinking i'm the best thing going to wishing I was dead at the flick of a switch!

    It's really good to read other experiences, even just for the reassurance that not everyone has the easy life with their teenagers that you see across Facebook and that.
    http://hibscomebackison.blogspot.co.uk/ - Read my blog "So A Season Starts.. " - Updated TODAY 03/08/15

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