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12 year old boy isolating?

My 12 year old is isolating in his room way more than usual. He has been texting more than normal. Not coming down for meals, and didn't even want to decorate the tree this year! That's his favorite. He's not talking much and really doesn't want anything for Christmas this year. We are considering limiting his phone use of course. He erased something on his phone when we went to do his weekly phone check. So we know something is up. We think he may have a girlfriend and is embarrassed but want to make sure he's not depressed or something else. I'm sure there are a ton of things it could be, but how do we make sure he's okay, without embarrassing him, or compromising his trust for us?

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Asked by Anonymous at 11:29 AM on Dec. 20, 2009 in Tweens (9-12)

Answers (4)
  • Talk to him. Or at least try. He's obviously hitting the beginning stages of being a teen, which are hard and CRAZY, but really you need to find out if anything is wrong or going on with him. Tell him he can trust you, to open up to and that you won't get mad. You trust him with that phone and it seems like he's violating the trust lately. If he won't talk or refuses to talk, forget the "Weekly" phone check. If you pay the bill and he's not acting normal, get the phone whenever you want and check it. Don't give him a chance to delete anything. Has he been acting hostile or anything? Depressed? Any other odd behavioural signs or just the isolation? Good Luck

    Answer by mom2BOYZnDad at 11:42 AM on Dec. 20, 2009

  • Definitely sounds like he's beginning puberty and his behavior could be perfectly normal. Since you pay the phone bill, wanna be sure of his well being, and he's being secretive, I'd check the phone whenever I felt like it. My son began exhibiting the same behavior around the same age. And guess what? He was too ashamed to admit he was masturbating and also had begun looking at dirty pictures. My only clues were: the amount of toilet paper being used, checking his phone and Internet sites and finding porno magazines. (I didn't have any of this stuff in my house in any form). Dad's gotta step up more to the plate and you've gotta step back a little. It's a guy thing. If you haven't had THE TALK or established boundaries on dating, now's the time.


    Answer by Ewadun at 12:00 PM on Dec. 20, 2009

  • Puberty can be rough on kids. Just ask him if you need to be concerned about anything like depression. If it's just the girlfriend that's fine but he also needs family time. Tell him MODERATION and a good balance of school, friends, family, games is important to his well being. If that doesn't work then call me and I'll drag his little butt out! Missing meals is not acceptable. Tell him not eating will make him a poor kisser. That should get him to the table! lol

    Answer by admckenzie at 5:28 PM on Dec. 20, 2009

  • Take away the phone; he should not be isolating himself in his room.

    Answer by rkoloms at 8:38 PM on Dec. 20, 2009

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