I am a 35-year old woman, married to my husband for 5 years (we have been together a total of 11 years). I have a 13-year old stepson. We have had a nice relationship for many years.
Lately he doesn't open up to me and lies a lot. I am very connected with his teachers and have an open conversation with his mother. He is failing everything in school and has basically given up. We have exhausted all resources. We ground him, take things away (games, computer, TV), we even sent him to military camp last summer ($3,000.00 wasted).
We told him he could not go on his class trip if he failed this semester. He didn't even try, so we cancelled his seat on the plane. His mother is going to take him to a psychologist.
I am just beside myself and so worried about him, he refuses to do any work. He just gave up on school. He tested gifted and is very intelligent. He doesn't seem to respond to either positive or negative reinforcement.
Any thoughts or suggestions?
I can understand your concern about this boy but I think his parents should be most concerned with him and I see that they are. But I would suggest that you take him to lunch or to the park where it is nice and have a talk with him. Find out what he has against you, his parents, and together, come to some understanding.
Perhaps he would prefer to live with his mother? In that case - talk to his parents. He is showing you that he is angry in his situation right now and either you, his parents, or the psychologist will get to the bottom and help all of you with this problem.
The important thing is that you cannot lose this boy.
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