Stubborn Teen Denying He Needs Help
There are several aspects I would like to address with you, so I will break apart the most important in two or three questions.
For now, I would like to ask you for tips to gain my son's trust, since he does not confide in me with anything and I know he is struggling with several things.
First, my husband is not his father and Philip overly rejects him, at such a point that their relationship is practically null. They travel together to school in the mornings and for my husband is very difficult because Philip does not talk the whole way. My husband is very frustrated and I understand him. It is not pleasant.
I have to be mother and father for Philip, because he does not see nor respect any authority in my husband, and his relationship with his real father is vague. They speak on the phone a kind of twice a month or so.... and Philip told me he does not need to tell him about his private stuff.
Philip is also having personal appearance issues, which is affecting his self esteem considerably. He is not so tall (I am short so is his father), but girls like tall guys. He is one of the oldest in his class, so acne broke out first for him. I have bought whatever you want for him. I offered to do the facial myself daily (I mean the Simple one).
I took him to a Dermatologist and paid for very expensive medicine that he does not take with discipline and the cream dries his skin that much that he did not want to use it again. I agree about this last. His skin gets worse with that.
Yesterday I saw him cleaning his face, so....Let's see if he does it daily. Philip is a nice boy, is my son and I see him gorgeous ha ha ha. But the truth is that he is OK.
When he listens to me and let me take him to the salon for a haircut, he comes back from school very satisfied, because he sees the impact among the girls and his pals. Many people celebrate his modern although short style haircut. And he looks handsome.
He has a very strong personality and likes to be the center of attention. He has friends, although they have been up and down lately, saying he did not have friends at the school he is attending now he is in Middle School. Almost demanded from me to remove him from this school and enroll him in another private school where he has some friends with whom he was before in an Elementary private school. However, suddenly something that one of his best friends said in his school about the new friends he has made, made my son calm down and forgot about that idea of not having friends and going to another school where he had friends.
He is very moody. The hormones are getting crazy in his system and that breaks my heart. I am more flexible to understand that and to be able to accept certain attitudes, than my husband. He probably does not feel it like me, first because he is not his son, he has no children on his own, and I think there is a missing connection there for him to be able to understand better.
Well, Philip changes his mind 24 times a day. He struggles with popularity (being the center of attention) because he is not a sports guy and girls like that. He is more an artist.
are also having the famous behavior problems because he is terribly disobedient and he challenges me every day with every order I give him. He does not respect rules and restrictions and homework is a twins delivery.
He and I have made an agreement for a prize I gave him, but he has not done what we agreed to. My husband gets very irritated when he disobeys, and considers many of his faults very disrespectful. I have another concept of disrespect.
Sometimes is hard to get to a middle point with my husband, because we are different on the way to raise and correct. I know I might make mistakes that I do not see so badly as errors.... but some of my husband's methods do not please me very much. Especially when his relationship with Philip is so very tense. I have suggested him to gain him first than keep trying to educate and punish him. I believe punishment is needed but, it is not my first option, nor the one to be repeating and repeating.
Last thing, Philip is not dealing very well with the beginning of his social relations with girls. Especially, because he is attracted to one girl who for the few things I have seen and can judge, is playing around with him and is hurting his feelings. He is hurting. She left the door open to a possible relationship when he first asked her out (you know what the kids refer when they say going out). Is not what we call going out, or dating. They are not really in the age of dating as we know it. Anyway, she changed her mind immediately. Same day, and called him. Rejected him initially saying to him she was not of the age to be hanging out with boys. I think she is 12 or 13. Philip is 14. Afterwards, I found out that she told him she has had so many boyfriends and she had dumped so many guys at her young age.
I would like to give him some advice on this regard, but I am afraid he would consider that impertinent from me, since the way I found out about this, was not by his mouth.
Well, my husband and I decided to get a Psychologist for Philip, just with the intention to help him. My husband wanted to address first the issues as a family, but I got to convince him that our priority could not be our frustrations, but his as a teen. I told my husband that Philip was showing different attitudes and the most important for me, was to discover why he was so blue. I came out to be that he has his own issues to deal with and needs a hand. It was not fair to start fixing the family's problems, without helping him with his first.
To our surprise, Philip does not want to go back to the therapy we arranged for him, stating he does not need help, and added he could talk with us if we wanted to. However, he is not doing it. His therapist said he cannot force him to talk to him and Philip told me up front a couple of days ago, that if I force him to go, he will sit down to look at the ceiling, because he is not going to talk to the psychologist.
Please guide me. Usually I am a very calm easy going Mom. Nevertheless, I am a very apprehensive Mom, when it comes to self esteem and depression in kids.
Thank you for your help.