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ADHD Parents Together
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Teenager and Education issues. Help!!

My 14 yr. old got into trouble at school and has to be homeschooled. I have always had a terrible time with him and homework, Now it is awful and I do not know how to get him to do his work. I have bribed, and threatened. How can I motivate him. He is only taking two classes right now and has several more to take before he can "Possibly" return to public school. I work full time and have a hard time helping him with these classes from a private school that seem to be harder than he was taking in public school.

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TeeTeeK- This sounds like a horrible situation for everyone. Did you child have an IEP/504 to help him? If he did then a psychologist would of had to have assessed him. If not I really recommend that if you any hope of getting him back in school, it sounds like what you are trying now is also not working. If not I think you start by getting an advocate to help get him back in school asap, not sure what he did but maybe the advocate can help. They can help with a 504/IEP if he qualifies.

A school psychologist can help you deal with him doing school work.

I find my child listens and takes directions much better from someone else, that is why homeschooling would not work for us.

Try to stay strong, big hug..

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He did have an IEP and Study skills in which the Teacher helped him with his work. He got caught with drugs, he said curious and self medicating. He also has depression. He has to stay out of public schools for a year. I wish they had at least done I.S.S or something. But the way the Vice Principal rolled her eyes at me when I was begging them to understand, made me want to never put him back in. However this is not working. Last night, It was a battle. Today is his last chance to give me his work to mail in or I am taking his phone and games. I wish there was another way, because of his depression, I am terrified he will do something stupid. He does see a counselor also.

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Was he expelled? And why? Wondering if you need a lawyer. Not that it’s an easy road but your son has a right to an education.

My son is the same age and has been suspended multiple times! Like multiple times each semester. He has an IEP and that has kept him from being expelled.

However I have the same issues as you regarding homework and any other work. He just refuses. So far I have t found any good motivators.

Just wanted you to know you’re not alone! I’m right there with ya!

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He did have an IEP and Study skills in which the Teacher helped him with his work. He got caught with drugs, he said curious and self medicating. He also has depression. He has to stay out of public schools for a year. I wish they had at least done I.S.S or something. But the way the Vice Principal rolled her eyes at me when I was begging them to understand, made me want to never put him back in. However this is not working. Last night, It was a battle. Today is his last chance to give me his work to mail in or I am taking his phone and games. I wish there was another way, because of his depression, I am terrified he will do something stupid. He does see a counselor also.

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How’d the work turn in go?

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He got his Economics done, However he did not attempt his Algebra (Not a strong point for either of us!!) He did ask if he could meet with his girlfriend, she has been a big help with his algebra. She was busy, so I gave him a slide until we can get with her today. I think she helps him more than the teachers ever did because it is one on one and he does not want to look stupid in front of her. I tried something different. He wanted Pandora music upgrade ($9.99 a month) I wrote up a contract that he has to complete Chapters 3 and take a midterm test in both classes or I cancel it and he has to do this without my constant nagging. I also emailed his counselor and asked her if we could discuss his education tonight with his appointment. I really do not know what else I can try to do except let him fail, and I hate to admit it but I want him to pass not only for him, but to prove to that school that he is not a child that deserves to be pushed to the side and forgotten!! Thanks for asking.

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One thing, I'm going to do this school year, is natural consequences, I would drive my stress level up to the max, with my son when it comes to school work, I would put more work into his education then him. My son will enter the 8th grade and it's time. I realizes that I'm not promoting independency when I'm doing all the work , that we all learn through challanges. My son is 14 and will be 15 in two months. I will still incorporate boundaries, expectations, structures and so forth, but he does not get his work done, then he will get his just, if he needs help, I will get that for him . But this year, he is taking the lead.

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I am guilty of helping to much and I think he knows that I will. I think that where I am A.D.D, I feel guilty for his struggles, so I help entirely to much!! I put a lot of thought into not paying for him to do this home school, with him having to take a year off, he would have to repeat the 9th grade the same year as his twin siblings, and I was not sure how that would go over. However, I am thinking that it may have to be done that way. I cant afford to pay for the other 3 classes and him not follow thru. He just doesn't care and I do not know how to get him to.

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You don't mention if your son is taking meds for his ADHD? It's very doubtful if he will be able to do schoolwork without them. I totally understand why the homeschooling isn't working - these boys can be pretty defiant with their parents. Can you find a tutor to do the homeschooling with him? I can tell you that the bribing and threatening only goes so far.....and our boys have very little interest in school - mostly because it's never been easy. So my advice is to make sure he's taking his stimulant medications and be sure and lock them up, along with any other meds in the house. Make sure you are going through his stuff on a regular basis to check for illegal substances. Lock up your alcohol and spare cash. And check out some of the homeschooling sites on-line....there are several that advertise now and perhaps those classes might be easier. There's no point in making the schoolwork hard.

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He does take Medication for A.D.D. I think he rebels against me more than his father, However I am the one that does all the work with him. I will check out homeschooling sites and see if their is help with A.D.D. The one he is with is Keystone and I have not asked them if they accommodate A.D.D. I feel like they do not with it being a private school. Thank you!!!

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TeeTee: I hate to say this, but make sure he's actually taking the meds - do you seem him take the pill? Is it possible that he needs a dose adjustment or change in meds? Have you investigated what drugs he was experimenting with? Pot or something else? And yes, our boys do seem to save their bad behavior for us moms - I know this first-hand! You probably won't find specific ADHD classes for home-schooling, but you should find classes that can perhaps be modified. Be sure he is taking the non-AP version to make it easier.

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Here’s an article you may find useful.

childmind.org/article/strat...

If you work full time and he is being homeschooled, is he expected to do the schooling all on his own / when at home alone, or does he go somewhere else for homeschooling? If you haven’t already, I would recommend developing a highly structured (help him break down the homework into chunks, schedule in lots of mini breaks) and written out schedule / incentive system. Kids with ADHD typically find this very hard to do on their own, which can set them up to feel like a failure and stop trying.

Also, sipping (not gulping) a sugary drinks, like lemonade or a sports drink, can help them keep going a little longer when their executive functioning skills are drying up. Having a fidget might help, too.

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The article was great!! I printed it to use the ideas myself. He is by himself (well, with his twin siblings) all day. I do straight daylight and my husband does a swing shift. My husband does not help with homework and when he does, there is a lot of yelling. I am going to go over the ideas with him and he is going to have to help me out with this. I appreciate all the help that I have received on this site and it has helped to know that other parents experience so much of the same things.

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It's a very difficult age, very hard on parents. I have a 14 year old, that struggles with homework, time management, following thru with what he needs to do. Its a full time job by itself. Because, if I don't he will never do it. I will not set him up to fail. Continue being his advocate. Maybe, talk to your Dr. and see maybe changing the medication. Teachers are off for the summer and are looking to make extra money, if you can hire someone to work with him and he will do better with that. That's what works for my son. I have a college girl who meets him every week for math and a teacher who comes once a week to help him.

Also, the best thing to do for yourself is go to a therapist. It helps me tremendously, it's the one thing I do for myself. I leave all the time in a positive mood. God bless

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My son can actually do the school work., his issue is focus and interest. if school was about video games and computers then I will have no worries. subjects like math, ELA, science, etc does not keep his interest and during school he will preoccupied his time by finding something to do during class like chew on pencils, / phasing out while missing info about school work, and not completing in class school work. Etc. He does the same at home, homework that will take no more than 40 mins takes 2 hrs. He comes home to an empty house, usually I'm home about two hrs later. I have a security system that can view him sitting there with his homework in front of him but he's picking at everything around him, searching for something to do but not the homework, it's of no interest. I understand what you mean about feeling guilty but then I see my son super focus on TV, video games, playing, etc, if he can do school work online maybe it will be a little better. My son takes Vyvanse for focus, intuitive for impulse and zoloft for anxiety. He was on Adderall; i had high hopes for that med but it didn't work out, nothing with side effects but it didn't have any staying power, he also took focalin after lunch to help with focus after school for years but it didn't help at all. Vyvanse did well the last days of school , when he returns he will either stay on the same doses or increase depending how well he can keep focus. My son also has a 504 plan at school, one of the thing the teachers are suppose to do is give him prompting through out classes, I doubt that he gets it from the teachers, because of missing homework etc. It seems to me that ADHD is a pleasure seeking conditions and the mental capacity doesn't function fully, my son has difficulties in problem solving, reasoning, common sense, social clues, motivation but excel at playing, video games, computers. Some will say maturity and the mental capacity of the brain is not developed, and they fuction fully off of the pleasure seeking interest. I witness it every morning and every day, from the time he wakes up in the morning until he goes to sleep, he is searching for something to fill that pleasure seeking desire, rather it's searching for sweets, taking things apart, breaking things, , putting his hands on the meanliness things , chewing on things , at age 14 1/2 Constantly.!!!!. Chores, hygiene, homework etc. All of these things takes mental thoughts, my son's mind only thinks pleasure seeking things.

How can you compete against something like that, and mother's are made the bad guys because we set the limitations and expectations to the pleasure seeking behaviors. Because we understand the ramifications of their decision, and then we are no fun, too mean, too strict. That is why, I'm changing my approach because he is old enough, with guidance but a different approach. He's old enough to stop making me be the bad guy and take on his own actions.

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My gosh, you are describing my son to a T. He is actually very smart, but has no interest in school. He used to make good grades and really didn't have to try in grade school. High school threw him for loop and that is when the trouble began. When I got him the IEP he went into depression because he did not want it. He feels stupid. Yesterday was the first day that he told me that he thought that I do not love him. It broke my heart. I am the bad guy because I push him and push him. The article above that "rckline" posted was very informative and I printed it to try to put it in place. I also feel as though the teachers did not want to take the time to look at him and make sure he was still focused. I mean, if a child can bring drugs and hand it to another child in class and the teacher does not notice, something is off. Where I also am A.D.D it is hard for me to follow thru on the things that needs to be done.

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How did you change your approach? You described my son. He can foucs and learn medical terms, about animals and bugs or whatever he wants to learn. When it comes to school, he forgets to write things down and doesn't seem interested in anything. We had a 504 plan, but it didn't help. I want him to stand on his own two feet and only have me behind him supporting him, not pushing him. I used to yell and sometimes revert back, but I have tried for months at the end of last year and the beginning to encourage him and motivate in a positive way. I won't say I'm perfect, but it seems like nothing works.

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Still Not much has helped, He does good for a little while then he slacks again. I made a schedule like what they may adhere to in school, he will not stick to it. Now, I am going to try to move his day around, since I work daylight and he will not do anything without me being there to push him, I am going to come home from work and spend two hours a night on classes. If he does it, then he can go to his games, if he does not. no games. The hard part of that will be when to give him his med's so they are not out of his system by the time I come home. I am at my wits end at this point. I now have him in four classes. English (Which is like College Literature and very hard) Science (He did all his test Multiple choice and T/F in a week but did not do his Essays) Algebra is a nightmare (He and girlfriend broke up and she was helping, my sister is trying now) and Econ, which he does randomly, but once again, he can not commit to doing essays!!! He was doing good with rewards, Do your work and you can go fishing, or to see girlfriend, but I have lost both those tricks now!!!

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My son is 14 and last year was put in alternative school because he tossed a battery down the hallway and it skimmed by the principal of HS. He pressed charges on my son for assault and battery. He has to do community service and was not allowed to attend public school for a year so we moved to FL. He has had several instances because of children bullying him and o e day he had enough and blew up at the kid, he had enough, he has a 504 and met with them and they had to let him keep attending public school because of it. But then he threw that battery and that was the last draw for them as they didn’t want to be liable for his actions. We thought about getting a lawyer and fighting the battery throwing but we saw video and it didn’t touch the guy. But yet they suspended him anyways and said it was not because of his adhd or depression anxiety. He now knows what he did because of the community service he had to do, which was not much 20 hours and make bookbags for children that couldn’t buy school supplies but I had to pay out of my pocket for that. This is not on his record neither as they stated if he completes it won’t be on it.

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