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School nightmare

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Now i,m not sure if i should be saying what i,m about to say on here but if i don't i fear i might explode so i want to clear my chest and listen to any reply that may help me cope with it.

Smacking children is one topic on here and i know i would be breaking the law if i did that but very soon i don't know if i can hold my patients for much longer.

My son is 15 and he refuse to go to school.

Now i have had problems with him over one thing or another for 2 years though he's not a criminal in any shape or form but he is making my life hell and reading some of your points about smacking this has made me react.

on Christmas eve 2 years ago i had to rush home from a night shift because he attacked his mum kicking her in the face and punching her.

I have never lost it with my kids and have 5, but that night i did.

To have your kids laugh in your face and say you can't touch me or i will phone the police is giving them the oppertunity to drive you to your limit and they will get away with it.

Well that night he did'nt get away with it and sadly i freaked.

I could have punched right round the house that evening as this was one of many attcks on his mum and i just hit him the once and yes he phoned the police.

They did not arrest me because the officer did not want to see my two babys without a dad on xmas day but i was warned off despite my wifes lip 3 times the size it usually is.

His behaviour has deteriated ten fold and now i cannot get him to go to school.

I have tried to reason with him about how important it is to do his exams only to be told to shut up.

I have dragged him out of bed to get him to go to school morning after morning when all discusssions have broke down and then had to do it all over again to get him to leave the house.

He isn't easy to handle either as hes bigger than me and very strong and i,m completely exhausted at the end of it.

Even if i got him there he would walk through the front door then streight out of the back one.

He has been expelled from one and taken on by another and now i,m loosing my patients but i cannot use physical punishment for his behavour even when he threatens me with his face into mine eggin me on 'come on then try it'.

I have been liasing with Education welfare and now they are taking me to court because he won't attend school.

What do they expect me to do drag him by the hair or carry him over my shoulder, god nobody has tried to help him more than me and now i,m about to get a criminal record and then may loose my job as i work for the government.

I am physically drained and i cannot do anything about it and i,m ready to face prosecution for trying to be a good parent to a child that completely disrespects his parents.

I know this is not the place to wash my dirty laundry but the education system and the ' do not smack your kids brigade' are nothing more than a load of S***e and instead of addressing the real problem they take the easy road and prosicute his father for doing everything i could and failed.

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That is a tough senario and I'm afraid I can't say I know what you're going through.


What would I do?

Thinking irrationally at the time, I would have probably beat the kid till he was black n blue for attacking his mum in thr first place! No I'm not saying that is the answer, and even if he phoned the police, it may (just may) have made him think twice about doin it again!


Thinking rationally I would have restrained him to the floor. Had his mum phoned the police and prosecuted the little s**t. After all, at 15 he is of the age of where he responsible. But this happened 2 years ago right? Making him 13... is he of prosecution age at 13? I don't know.

I have no doubt tht you love your son, despite is behaviour, but the possibility of care needs to be considered. Having his mum's saftey at risk (as well as your own) not to mention the criminal record aspect of things for you shouldn't even require a seconds thought. I would suggest counselling but if he isn;t going to school, then I doubt he would go there. Hypnotherapy is another possibility. Behavioural hypnotherapy is becoming bigger (especially in the states) and is proving to really help things.


Try offering him a holiday to somewhere he wants to go, in exchange for counselling and behavioural hypnotherapy.

Also see if there are groups of people for him to talk to and find out why he is behaving like he is. There maybe someone (not much older than him... 19 or so) who has been a behavioural problem in the past and grown out of it, who could offer some help to your son.


DO NOT just ignore the problem in hopes that it will go away on its own. Nip it in the bud now.

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Jeez Cycleracer sounds like you have your hands full.

Again I can not know what it is like, but it sounds to me like whatever you do it will not change things in the short term, he may grow up and come to his senses one day.


You have a younger son? right? is there some jealousy?


I think he needs to forget the schooling and go straight into work, I know it will be hard to get a job, but once he is sixteen he may be able to get something which will give him some money and he will start to feel independant.


Good luck with it.

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Sorry to hear about this Cycleracer. We discuss these things on the fora with a kind of detachment but then when it smacks you in the face it's very alarming.


My suggestion for what it's worth is to get your GP to recommend a child psychologist. There's probably a waiting list for this but the sooner you act the better. I saw a prog on TV where the parents were suffering in much the same way as yourselves and the medicos prescribed a regime similar to that recommended above but also including drugs. So, again, keep on at your GP until you get a suitable response. Failing that get your MP on board and get him to kick some a**. I think David Blunkett's your MP so he should carry some clout.


Good luck mate.

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I think legal help is needed and a group of workers need to do a report on your son.


He needs help and so does your family!!!.


It is perhaps a tad late and obviously not a nice thing to do, but diaries are suggested to keep an accurate track of events as they happen.

Mum should have pressed some kind of charges and physical damage should always be photographed if you memory kicks in to do get the camera out.


Write down what you have had to endure over the last two years or more if applicable and give it to your legal counsel. You are entitled to one hours FREE legal advice with any solicitor.

Citizens advice, what are social services doing? Is there a health Visitor around? GP's? Grab some help.


Can the school give you any backing on you having to drag your son to school. Someone in officladom who can say - "yes this man has tried to get his son to go to school and we haven't given him enough help, I have seen it"


We are with you and if there is anything we can help with give us a shout.


Are there no solicitors on forum who can advise???




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Cycleracer you really sound to be having a terrible time. I have all that adolescent stuff to come with my two daughters. I can remember what I was like as a teenager so I'm preparing for a bumpy ride.


Please please don't take this the wrong way but in this case smacking in earlier times clearly hasn't worked. This is where my dilemma comes in. I was smacked (by hand and strap) as a child and was given a humiliating crack every now and again at school for nothing any more serious than talking. I have smacked my own children but am always really upset afterwards. I honestly don't think that it works in the long term. However my theories don't help you.


I think that your son needs some sort of counselling asap before he takes his anger and agression onto the streets. I would definitely make my GP the first port of call. You don't say if his behaviour is having an impact on the behaviour of your other children. Has school not offered to put you in touch with an eduactional social worker?

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you know, im a teenager, and i kind of was a bit like your son.....only because i was being bullied and i felt like there was no one i could talk to. im not saying your son is but if you leave him for a while and dont talk to him then si t down with him and just let him talk(if he wants-DONTforce him) that happened with me..... now im back on track with a great boyfriend and i have just enrolled on a college course. Thatrs what happened with me and its worked out fine.


good luck


itl be a long road but youll get there eventually

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Sammie maybe you could be the kind of person to have a chat with his son. Even if via MSN or summat. If you had experience. Not to put pressure on or anything... only if you feel that you would be up to the task.


Just a thought. Tell me to butt out if you like!:D

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Sorry to hear your story. I'm sure the other readers of the forum will back me up in saying it sounds like you've had a tough time and you have our good wishes for reaching an acceptable solution.


You should hope for the best but prepare for the worst.

If you haven't already done so, make notes going as far back as you can of his actions and yours - be honest. In particular note what help you have sought from officialdom (school, social services etc) and the responses. Get your wife to do the same but independently of you.


Have a think around possible causes - low self esteem as a result of poor academic achievements, sibling rivalry, bullying, confusion over gender/sexual orientation etc. If you can spot the underlying problem you're on a winner for addressing it.


Look for any positive behaviours and try to let it be known that you have spotted the good and respect him for it - but do be awfully careful it doesn't sound like you're patronising him.


There are seven people affected here. You don't say the ages of the other kids except that 2 were babies 2 years ago. You cannot let that one individual make life for the others intolerable - and what kind of role model is he giving for the youngsters?


Don't be a martyr, don't blame yourself, don't think "if only I'd done... years ago", don't think you're a bad parent, even if that's what the Education welfare people are telling you (if they are reacting that way they they're incompetent prats) that just makes it harder to deal with the here and now.


Do cooperate with the officials, do show them respect, do ask for their help and treat them as "the experts" even if they are a waste of space they will respond better if you are making them feel important.


You will need to be ready to be firm but fair. Level with him (if he'll listen). Questions like "how do you think it makes your mum feel when ... " and statements like "When you do ... I feel ..." (fill in the blanks).


Give him the air-space to say his piece. Don't argue it point by point, don't correct individual statements just hear him out respectfully only intervene to get him to explain what he's saying and to say more. You can then ask the same from him. He may try to argue your points - you have to have strong self control, and not let yourself get dragged into a shouting match, do that and you've lost the arguement. Don't dismiss what he says out of hand. It may be extreme and exaggerated but there may be a nugget of truth underneath that will give you an insight into the real problem. However wrong it seems just try taking it at face value.


No threats unless they are reasonable and you mean them and can and will carry them out. Don't back him into a corner, make sure he always has 2 choices the one he wants and you don't or the one you want and he doesn't . Spell out the consequences of the first (or, better, get him to project forward himself) and spice the second choice up to make it more attractive.


You could lay it on the line that if there is any more violence against anyone then he is old enough to be responsible for his actions and you will involve the Police - but that means you'll have to do it and there is a high probability that he will test your resolve. That's bloody difficult thing to do to your own child but think of it as a positive action to break his cycle of unacceptable behaviour in his best long-term interests, and think of the benefit to the other people involved.


Better if you can use incentives rather than threats "if you attend school and behave maturely for the next 5 days you get those trainers you want". You might be too close to the problem to be able to do this yourself, you may need help - from a respected relative maybe? Counselling can be a big help but I guess he'd be uncooperative - That's fine, the rest of the family could participate and agree how to haandle matters. Counselling won't give you any answers but will help tease the right answers out of you.


See if you can get him on some kind of activity holiday scheme - depending on your financial circumstances you may find a source of financial support. The best of those build self esteem and redirect excess energy and even anger in a creative, positive direction.


Men and women approach issues from different angles, get a female perspective too. Men tend to confront issues whereas women can often get a better result by a more subtle approach. As a lad he kind of knows what the male confrontational approach is like and he knows how to respond, a female approach might wrong-foot him.


There is no "right answer" you need to get lots of advice and pick out what bits sound best to you with the knowledge only you have of the lad and the circumstances. There is definitely one wrong answer and that is to do nothing and let the situation drift further out of control.


Anyway that's my take on the problem, I'm probably talking ****** but I hope you get something useful out of it if only the knowledge that people on the forum DO give a damn about each other.

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