My 12-year-old son’s behavior has been the bain of my life since he started middle school 18 months ago, with multiple out of school and in-school suspensions, detentions, general bad behavioral and academic issues. You can read all my previous blogs about these issues by clicking here (first six results).
I won’t bore you with the entire story, there is a lot happening so I will start with Wednesday 3/8. I turn up at my son’s school at 4:05pm after chess club, where he is allowed to watch but not play due to consistently being on the D & F list; and I see the Assistant Principal walking towards my car.
The Assistant Principal explains that Conner will have after school detention for misuse of school resources, i.e. having multiple tabs of nonschool related websites up on the school Chromebooks during his math class. For the rest of the semester, his access to technology has been rescinded, he will be handed a paper worksheet. I have no issue with this action, I welcome it as my son cannot help himself.
The stupid thing is that my son got busted for the same crime just six weeks ago. I have every reason to believe he continued with the same behavior in math class and only just got caught again on Wednesday.
At home, the net result is that my son lost the last few pieces of technology he still had. I took away his mp3 player, his radio and strobe light he likes to sleep with. And as a bonus punishment, he was not allowed to stay overnight at his grandmother’s house this very evening I am writing this.
Not being able to stay over at his grandmother’s house seems to bother him much more than anything else. He has been asking us if he could do anything to be allowed to go over to “Mimi’s”, so maybe the threat of losing the privilege of staying over at his grandmother’s house will change his behavior?
Fast forward to this evening, I caught my son in my closet where I put his gadgets during previous behavior issues. Of course, the gadgets were not in the closet, I don’t store the confiscated gadgets in the same place every time. I was in my office which is located next door to my bedroom, and the closet shares a wall between the bedroom and office so I could hear him rummaging around in the closet.
I confronted him just as he closed the closet door and he tried to make excuses; which, of course, I was having none of it, there is no reason why he needs to be in my closet. I challenged him to give one reason why he needs to be in my closet and he just stared at me blankly like he does when he has no answer.
The bigger concern is my son’s lack of interest in doing his schoolwork. He has been on the D & F list for all but three weeks since the start of the school year and we’re about to end the third semester. He constantly has 2 – 3 assignments past their due date and even with an extension he fails to attempt the work. Even when the threat of losing his technology is present, he still goes straight to his room instead of doing the homework that was due the next day, despite promising us and his teachers he would do it.
I have come to the conclusion that punishing him, talking to him and encouraging him is a waste of time. Now, he will have to come to me and ask for help, only he can decide that he wants to change his behavior, when he does, I will give him all the help I can, for now, I’m done with dealing with this shit!