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my teenager has LOST HIS MIND -- please help me


overwhelmed13

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i am writing for advice and insight about how to help my son. i am a single mom. my ex was abusive to me and generally absent from my son's life. my son is 14 years old. he started high school a year early at 13 and is supposed to be in tenth grade. the past year and a half have been utter h*ll. my son earned 22 suspensions during the ninth grade. none were for fighting. these were for disruptive behavior in class, cutting school, and not being where he was supposed to be. despite having an IQ of 125, the school decided that he was too disruptive, had very poor social skills, and would do better if he were placed in a therapeutic school. he was eventually expelled from the therapeutic school.

 

my son is also a chronic runaway. i filed no fewer than 15 missing persons reports for him over the past year. at one point, i became so worried about him that i put him in a clinical facility where he was diagnosed with depression and substance abuse issues (marijuana and alcohol). after a few weeks my son came home. of late, he has been traveling to dangerous neighborhoods to hang out with bad kids. he was jumped and recently had his two front teeth knocked out -- they are back in and healing. at this point i have tried to put him back into clinical treatment. and he ran away 3 days ago. none of his friends will cooperate with me to let me know his whereabouts. i am a complete wreck -- have not slept in days, can't eat or work. any ideas about what is going on with my son and how i might help him?

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Is he on some meds and/or going to counseling for his depression and substance abuse? Also, are you in counseling? I found counseling extremely helpful in dealing w/ unruly children as a single mom. The counselor gave me wonderful parenting help and I saw her every week and was held accountable for how well I did on my part as far as following through on consequences, etc. If I didn't do as well one week, we could discuss it and work through it to trouble shoot. Also, the one daughter who was causing such havoc in the family got on meds for ADD and depression (which I'd previously not been thrilled about the idea of medicating her) and our world changed quickly. I even got several calls from her teachers over the course of a couple of weeks about what a drastic change they'd seen in her disruptive behavior and how she was doing in school. Just some thoughts. Best wishes and I'm sorry you're going through this, especially as a single mom. I've been there (still am) and it rips your heart out and is exhausting! Best wishes.

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yes, he was in counseling with a therapist and a therapeutic mentor and saw a psychiatrist who placed him on prozac. he was also in an outpatient youth group for the substance abuse. he now refuses to attend any therapy, the outpatient group or to take his meds. his treatment team has recommended in-patient treatment to stabilize him. he ran away three days ago. police are looking for him but he is hiding out. I am in therapy. I cry often, have pain in my back, shoulders, chest, behind my eyes, and ly sensations in my arms. I am falling apart. and I don't know what's wrong with my only child.

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Omg, I'm so sorry!! Tearing up just reading that. I don't know what to say except I'll send you a hug and know that I'm crying w/ you right now. Kids can rip your heart to smithereens like no one else can, again I'm so sorry, wish I could help.

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Have you considered any boot camp type programs that are run specifically for teens with substance abuse and behavior problems? My little one is just 2.5 so I cannot preach as I've just begun my parenting journey. The boot camp idea was the first to come to mind.

I hope your son turns up safe and soon!! *hugs*

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Probably the only thing that will work right now is if they find him and he stays in the intreatment program. Look into seeing if you can commit him. I know that would be a horrible and gut wrenching decision but it might be the only thing that saves his life at this point. He needs to be somewhere where he isn't a danger to himself.

 

I am so sorry that you have to deal with this.

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