Thanks Thanks:  0
Likes Likes:  0
Results 1 to 4 of 4

Thread: Letting go of your teen

  1. #1

    Default Letting go of your teen

    As a parent of a son who is about to turn thirteen I was wondering how others have dealt with this "letting go" phase that I now find myself in.

    I think that parents of children with special needs probably have greater diffculty doing this. We have spent so much time advocating for our children both at school and in the community I can barely imagine not doing this anymore.

    I have made a conscious effort lately not to jump in and "help" over the past few months when he has issues with neighborhood kids and/or parents and so far the sky has not fallen in! ha ha...

    How have some of you handled this phase?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Vancouver Island
    Posts
    20

    Red face Re: Letting go of your teen

    Hi, I hear you on this one. My son will be 13 in June, and the issue has been

    rolling around in my brain too. I haven't reached that point in a big way

    however, as he doesn't socialize a lot at this point, and is still very attached.

    I do worry about him spreading his wings however, and I think that's one of

    the hardest things for parents... to just let them make their own mistakes

    (and victories too I'm sure) while we stand by somewhat helpless. I worry

    about the choices that he will make, and the negative things he will face

    without me by his side trying to slay the dragons. I'm sure I still will be

    trying, but it's inevitable that I have to let go more and more as he grows

    older. Loss of control....eeeek! Any feedback from TS adults who have been

    there as the child, or TS parents with older children?

    cookiemonster

  3. #3

    Default Re: Letting go of your teen

    I think that parents of children with special needs probably have greater diffculty doing this. We have spent so much time advocating for our children both at school and in the community I can barely imagine not doing this anymore.
    You are so right when you say the above, Patti! We've been through teenagehood three times with our now-adult daughters and foster daughter and thought we were pros, until our 15 yr. old TS+ son came along! We are presently working with a psychiatrist and her recommendation is that we not get involved at school unless either our son or the school request it. The funny thing is, it's usually our son (who requested that we "butt out"--only less nicely) who calls us in. For instance, he called from school yesterday saying it was course selection time and he needed me to come. I arranged to come at lunchtime and it went smoothly. Another time, he was having trouble with a teacher who was also the school counselor so he asked me to come and SHE gave me a hard time about being there as it was "not age appropriate," which is why he had asked me to come. Because he appeared "normal" in class, she refused to accept that he had some limitations, even though they were listed on his IEP.

    What we've settled on is that we've identified the "TS friendly" school administrators and teachers that our son feels understand him. One vice-principal is absolutely fantastic so, if there are any admin. or teacher problems, our son has permission from this VP to come to him to advocate for him from within the system. Yesterday we found out that the VP is being transferred next year but I think that we will be able to find another advocate somewhere in the system. Also, his drama teacher is a personal friend of ours and is able to supply him with a "safe place" to come to. We've done the normal in-service type talks with all of his teachers, even though he's in Gr. 10, but these two have agreed to be on-site backups. I'm also very involved in helping with the drama program and volunteer to do other tasks around the school as a "thank you" to the teachers and administrators who are working so hard. I always befriend the front office workers (as we tend to see them frequently) and make sure that they're the ones who get special thank you treats on special days--again to thank them for being non-judgmental. In middle school, the secretaries were named Lisa and Mona and one morning, our son said to my husband, "You know what I like about them? They always give me a Mona Lisa smile, even when I'm late!" We made sure we communicated that little story and our gratitude back to them.

    So, I guess what I'm saying is that we are letting go in stages but not all at once. Our son is aware that, for various reasons, he's behind emotionally and may need a bit of extra help. We try not to not rescue him, at the same time doing what we can to help him find his way through the maze when he asks for help. He's got a sleep disorder and has a very poor attendance record so we've decided to sign him in or to call the school if he's home, to let them know that he's not skipping, but it's up to him to catch up and keep his marks up. He may have to fail a couple of subjects in order to realize that he needs to attend in order to succeed (he has no learning disabilities, other than the sleep disorder) and he'll have to figure out how to make that happen. His psychiatrist is very good and insists that our son enter into contracts with us that clearly spell out just what each party will do. Some things seem ridiculous: "At 8:30 AM, E's Dad will bring him turkey bacon" is one of the protocols, for instance, but he does do a better job of being on time when the contract is in place and we are all following it. Having that third party mediator is invaluable.

    So, good luck with the "letting go but standing by" approach! Hey, again TS parents are actually consciously thinking about what to do here where a lot of parents never stop and think about it -- so good on you both! ;) We've found it helpful not to compare our son to others his age but, instead, to look at where we were a year previously and note the progress--because it's amazing but there is always SOMETHING to celebrate over!

    Keep us informed! This is not a "one time" subject, as those of us who are actively parenting teens know!

  4. #4

    Default Re: Letting go of your teen

    My oldest son is turning 13 as well in 9 days (AAAAHHHHHHH!) He is in gr.7 still and I have found that I have been pulling back this yr. I am no longer cleaning out his desk, or talking to the teacher constantly.The "Team" meets every couple of months to discuss how he is doing. Part of what has made this yr. easier to "let go" has been that his teacher has a good organization program in place, they Number all their pages in 1 binder(to keep order) and when it gets to a certian # they Transfer ALL papers into a duotang so that the binder does not get to full and "disorganized". Also the teacher sends home a Monthly Report Card so that you know how they are doing and what projects/papers/tests etc. are missing, and then they have a short period of time to make it up. This has been most helpfull, not just with my sons with "issues" but with my step-daughter as well.
    As for "letting them go" they are only turning 13 not 20, and I think that we have to do the hardest things for ourself and that istrusting that we have given them a good start & they have a good moral center & judgment, and that they will be able to know what they can handle & what they need help with. Perfect exp. "he called from school yesterday saying it was course selection time and he needed me to come. I arranged to come at lunchtime and it went smoothly. Another time, he was having trouble with a teacher "
    I think we are all figuring it out as we go,they say that you parent with what you know or where "taught" by your own parents. I think we can agree that we are WAY out of the legue of what we were "Modeled" sometimes we just have to trust ourselves hold our breath step out over the edge into the abis of parenting and do the best we can.
    Good luck to all of us as we head into the termultuos years of puberty.
    M

Similar Threads

  1. Parent of almost teen asking????
    By ticsx3 in forum Teens and Young Adults
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: September 23, 2006, 09:07 PM
  2. Teen Deals with His Tourette
    By Steve in forum Teens and Young Adults
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: June 5, 2006, 08:44 PM
  3. Parents of Teen with TS, OCD and Sensory Issues
    By Tictalkmom in forum Symptoms, Causes, and Resources
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: October 21, 2004, 08:51 PM

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •