23 Aug
My Son Thinks I’m A Buzzkill!

Dear Mouthy Housewives,

My 17 year-old son (18 in December) has decided he is going to start making his own decisions and stop living by my rules. This means he is going to continue to smoke pot when he’s hanging out with his friends. Ā  I’ve restricted him three times already and began drug testing, but it doesn’t help. Unless I lock him up and throw away the key, he said he will continue to get stoned because he likes the way it makes him feel. He thinks I should look the other way and let him smoke pot as long as he keeps his grades up, has a job, and is not getting into any trouble. By the way, his father and I are divorced, and my ex-husband doesn’t really want to push the issue with him. Thoughts, suggestions, or am I overreacting?

Signed,

Mary Jane

___________________________

Dear Mary Jane,

First, my heart goes out to you. This sounds like an incredibly difficult and scary situation to be in, and you’ve clearly been busting your ass to try to make things work. Regarding the should-I-just-let-him-smoke-pot issue, my response, is a resounding NO EFFING WAY. Because it’s clear to me that it’s not okay with you.

The bottom line is that, regardless of his age, he’s still living in your home. So, if we ignore the whole drug issue momentarily, we still have the fundamental problem of rule-breaking and blatant disrespect. Ā  To put it mildly: your son is being a total jerk. (The good news is that we can still love our children even while they’re being jerky. I’ve verified this with my own kids.)

This testing of boundaries and independence is certainly a natural part of growing up, but it doesn’t mean we as parents should just look the other way. Exactly why your son has turned to drugs is a serious issue that needs to be explored. I would strongly recommend seeking a support network and talking about this with an experienced family therapist. Family counseling can be invaluable when the child views you as an enemy rather than an ally. A mediator can get those lines of communication back open. (Which is nice, since kids don’t seem to respond well to the I LABORED FOR 24 HOURS WITH YOU, YOU SELFISH SONOFA–)

If you can’t get your son to agree to counseling, you might need to take extreme measures. (And I think physical restraints are “frowned upon,” unfortunately.) Since keeping him in your home is essentially enabling the very behavior you’re trying to curb, you might need to help him find alternate living arrangements until he’s ready to function as a responsible, respectful adult. You certainly deserve that much as his mother.

We all wish you luck,

Kristine, TMH

23 Responses to “My Son Thinks I’m A Buzzkill!”

08.23.11#1

Comment by Cate8.

Exactly my thoughts–alternative living arrangements.
He should move out while he still ‘knows’ everything.
try affording pot and an apartment…LOL

Carla Reply:

This seriously made me chuckle out loud! Ha!

Kristine Reply:

It made me laugh, too!

08.23.11#2

Comment by indymommy.

I went through that with my 17 year-old son, to the T.
Part of his issue was my divorce, part of it was heartbreak due to a girlfriend, part of it was probably teenage hormones…and then a large part BAD friends. Unfortunately, his good friends smoke pot, too. Apparently, EVERYONE but the geeky kids smoke pot at school.
We put him in counseling, which has helped, and my current husband read him the riot act, which read, in part, YOU WILL STOP DISRESPECTING MY WIFE OR YOU WILL ANSWER TO ME, YOU LITTLE SH*T!.
It worked for the most part, along with random drug testing. If he tests positive, he loses ALL technology, and we take his bedroom door off. No privacy for you, buck-o.
He actually told me that he LIKES that we randomly drug test him. It makes it easier to stand up to the peer pressure: “Nah, man. I can’t smoke. My mom makes me pee in a cup. She’s SUCH a drag”. I told him to go right ahead and blame me if that’s an easy way for him to say “no”.
I’m still scared to death every time I test him, but he’s been clean the past couple of times (and I don’t just test for pot…I buy the more expensive kit that tests for several drugs).
Hang in there, and don’t give up!

Wendi Reply:

That’s really fascinating that he’s happy he has an excuse to not smoke with his friends. Good for you for being so diligent.

admin Reply:

I agree with Wendi. Sounds like you handled that situation really well. It’s nice to hear that these types of speed-bumps can turn out well.

08.23.11#3

Comment by Danielle.

I work for a defense attorney. Oh the little scared boys that come in here crying when they are caught with drugs. Tell him it’s all fun and games until he’s been to jail and has a criminal record.

indymommy Reply:

Oh, I’ve told him that. I have a friend who is a deputy prosecutor, and I’ve watched him in action – he handles all juvenile cases.
Teenagers think they’re invincible until they have an experience that proves they’re not.
Unfortunately, many damage themselves tremendously in that learning process. šŸ™

VG Reply:

Your kid needs to talk to my brother who’s currently doing time in prison for drug and other felonies. He started drugs @ 14, he’s now 20 and will spend the next 5 yrs behind bars. Sad…

08.23.11#4

Comment by Mimzy Wimzy.

I am a b*tch when it comes to this stuff with my kids. My middle daughter left a few days after she turned 18 because she didn’t like our rules. We said “We are not telling you that you have to leave, you are welcome to stay and live by our rules. If you choose to leave, we choose to lock the door.” Almost a year and a half later she is 19 & 6 months pregnant with a 31 year old boyfriend in jail for drugs (his multiple offense) Anyway, back to your son. Chances are if he is being that obstinate and defiant he will not be cooperative towards counseling. If you are that against his behavior and concerned for him, turn him in to the authorities. He wants to make adult choices, let him deal with adult consequences. Better to be a harsh parent now than to have his behaviors escalate and have harm come to him.

N and Em's mom Reply:

Turning him in to the authorities is a bad idea. If he is smoking regularly, then he may have enough to be charged with “possession with the intent to distribute.” No one needs mom to help them achieve that first felony conviction. Having said that, you are responsible for your house and car. I would immediately suspend car priviledges for him. You are aware that he is smoking pot and have drug tested him. Under the circumstances, letting him drive at all is a huge liability for you.

indymommy Reply:

I agree with N and Em’s mom. You do NOT want your child to have any kind of record if you can help it. That being said, I did warn my son that if I caught him again, I would have the drug dogs make a visit, and I made good on that promise. Thankfully, they found nothing, and it scared him. He knows I’m serious, and that I’ve had enough.

Mimzy…where did your choice to kick her out get you? She moved in with a loser. That doesn’t sound like such a fabulous choice.

VG Reply:

You must come from the philosophy: Snitches get Stitches :-\
I say turn his arse in… “Adult” decision have ADULT consequences. Mom could be charge with Lord knows what if he has pot stashed in the home.
OR! If this little darling doesn’t want to follow Mom’s rules, then it’s off to Daddys! Seems like he’s willing to turn a blind eye to this crap.

08.23.11#5

Comment by Nysha.

Mimzy didn’t kick her daughter out, she gave her the option of staying and following rules or living somewhere else. The choices her daughter made are not Mimzy’s fault & had she let her live at home there’s a good chance she would still be pregnant by a 31 year old man who is now in jail.

Kristine Reply:

I couldn’t agree with this more.

08.23.11#6

Comment by Meredith L..

My children are currently only 2 1/2 and fetal. They won’t do this to me when they are teenagers, right?

…right?????

Someone hand me a paper bag to hyperventilate into.

Tonya Reply:

My son is 3 and I’m in full on denial. It’s really beautiful here.

Kristine Reply:

I didn’t know you were in Denial, too, Tonya! We’ll have to schedule playdates more often!

Hayleyc Reply:

I don’t even have children yet and I’m already in Denial!

08.23.11#7

Comment by suburbancorrespondent.

I’m with the people who believe that if a child/teen/”grownup” is under your roof, he/she has to follow the rules of the house. Also, if he is a “grownup,” he certainly doesn’t need your car/Internet/phone (or financial subsidies thereof). Granted, sometimes this approach is hard to implement (we are struggling with this right now with our 18-year-old daughter); but adhering to this basic guideline keeps you sane. Sometimes kids have to go out there and make mistakes, you know? Big mistakes…

08.23.11#8

Comment by suburbancorrespondent.

Also? Put some military recruiters on his tail – believe me, your son will feel better about himself if he is out of the house and self-supporting…

08.23.11#9

Comment by rojopaul.

My house, my rules. Sorry, but that’s the breaks. Immediate restriction from hanging out with these bad friends, no more cell phone, internet, etc. Time for a job too so he can pay for his own insurance (if he’s not) and start supporting himself. When he turns 18, he’s more than welcome to move out, pay for his pot and try to support himself and pay for his own insurance, cell phone, etc. Definitely think family counseling is necessary too so he can see you aren’t “the bad guy” but the loving, concerned parent.

P.S. Kristine, I loved your “Dear Mary Jane” intro. Too funny.

Kristine Reply:

Haha! Thanks šŸ˜‰

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