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I need advice about my 9 year old son!!

My name is Janelle. I have three boys 9, 6 & 1 1/2 year old. My husband is currently deployed to Africa. My oldest son has been seriously acting out in the past two months. He is ADD & has anxiety disorder but his medications have been keeping them both in check. A few months ago I had to take away his nintendo ds because he was playing it in the middle of the nite instead of sleeping. Then he took it out of my room and continued to sneak playing it in his bed at nite. I kept hidding it in new places, he found and played it 3 more times. I finally had to give it to my friend to hold on to. Due to him sneaking his DS and lying about it I told him he was no longer aloud to watch tv. I disconnected his cable cord from the back of his tv. About a week later he came in my room screaming at 6:30 in the morning. I promise I did it, I dropped the TV on my foot. He was trying to reconnect the cable cord & dropped a 37" box tv on his foot. There have been many other lies along with these. I have had many discussions with him on why he is lying and doing these things. He promises me that he will stop then turns around and lies to me again. Tonite I put all three boys in the car and was saying goodbye to a friend. When I opened the door I smelled smoke!! He had taken a lighter and had burned a leaf in the car!! I am so scared one of these times he will seriously hurt himself of one of his brothers doing these stupid things. Have any of you had similar experiences or any advice?? I have tried all I can think of, I am at wits end. Please help me!!! Thanx



Asked by d0ubletr0uble at 11:26 PM on Apr. 9, 2011 in Tweens (9-12)

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Answers (12)
  • People can be really harsh here. Sorry you haven't gotten a lot of constructive advice.

    Since your son has ADHD & anxiety, and this behavior has been going on for a couple of months, I'm guessing that the medications aren't keeping things in check as well as they were. He may be experiencing insomnia because of the anxiety, and is using the TV & DS to get his mind off of things. And I think he's lying because he doesn't know what else to do. Anyone who has ever suffered from insomnia & anxiety (I have) knows how wretched it is to be left alone with your worries in the middle of the night.

    I would go see your pediatrician or the person who prescribes his meds. I think he's clearly having a hard time coping and doesn't know how to talk to you about it (no offense, all kids do this w/ their moms). He probably has a lot on his mind & doesn't know what to do with it. I disagree with those who think you should come down harder.

    Answer by sweetpotato418 at 5:32 PM on Apr. 10, 2011

  • He may need an outlet. Get him to a counsler to talk to a nonobjective person. Does he play sports? My 9 year old has been caught playing with fire twice. Good luck.

    Answer by sunnyflower417 at 11:31 PM on Apr. 9, 2011

  • Honestly, after the stunt with stealing the Nintendo back I wouldn't have just given it to a friend. That and every toy/electronic would be donated. You do not have to provide toys. You have to provide basic needs only. If he can't be responsible and play with his toys in the allotted time allowed then he doesn't need to have them at all! No cable, no tv, no anything but a bed, dresser, and cloths in his room.

    Answer by SalemWitchChild at 11:33 PM on Apr. 9, 2011

  • As for the burned leaf, how did he get the lighter? And who did he steal it from? Stealing is a major offense and whomever he stole from I'd make him take it back, and he'd be doing chores for them for the next month!

    Answer by SalemWitchChild at 11:35 PM on Apr. 9, 2011

  • Does he need to see a therapist? Maybe a med change?

    Answer by dancer at 11:30 PM on Apr. 9, 2011

  • Spend some time with just him playing a game, talking or just hanging out watching tv. Most kids act out and lie when they feel unloved. You could try putting him in a sport or something of interest to him, but make sure you are there cheering him on. Medicine is great but love is so much better. Sorry if it sounds like a silly answer, but I've dealt with tons of kids whose parents can't figure out what they act us and when I asked them how much time they really spend, it practically nothing. Since you have other kdis, try doing things together. I'm assuming he misses his Dad and mom just may be too nice at times. Set boundaries and realize it will take some time to see improvement. Hang in there.

    Answer by TwinkleLites at 12:00 AM on Apr. 10, 2011

  • Sorry..used up my words...

    But wanted to say that I am sorry your husband is deployed now and I understand it is very difficult when you have difficulty with a child like this.

    I agree with everyone here. I think he is acting out and some attention seeking behaviors. However you need to really strip down his privileges and luxuries and make those the rewards for better behavior. SalemWitchChild is right on the mark with chores. I would make that boy so busy with extra workbooks and house chores that there is no time for even one DS game!

    Good luck!

    Answer by spottedpony at 12:22 AM on Apr. 10, 2011

  • My 9 yr. old is not an angel, but he doesn't lie or play with fire. I would come down so very hard on my child if he did either. And, in my opinion a child needs a tv in their room like they need a hole in the head.

    I take away my son's DS too. I put it on a shelf that he can reach and see, yet he leaves it alone because he knows that would be crossing the line to take it.

    I think there are some boundaries lacking here, and maybe the ADD and anxiety issues skew things in this case. However, even with these disorders, I think you really should be able to lay the law a little better with him somehow. I mean the fact that you had to take the game out of the house because you could not effectively keep him off of it speaks volumes.

    You need to stick to your guns and set some serious consequences for the lying/ disrespect every time he does it. The fire may have been for attention, but I think you need to get professional help

    Answer by spottedpony at 12:17 AM on Apr. 10, 2011

  • I have tried a lot of these, but not taking away the toys. So this morning when he got up I made him put all of his toys into trash bags and drag them into my closet. He will have to earn them back. Maybe & hopefully this will get the message accross!! I know I asked for advice but it seems to me that some of you have been a bit harsh. Everyones circumstance is different. My husband has been in 11 years and has been deployed 7 times. If you are not military it might be hard for you to understand what this does to a family. I have tried therapy due to him being a VERY sensitive child. It has helped him to not be so touchy about everything. I have him in baseball and he claims to love it. He has been playing every season since he was 4. I make it a point to spend at least 1/2 hour with him after the other two have gone to bed doing whatever he wants, watching AFV, playing board games or just talking.

    Comment by d0ubletr0uble (original poster) at 11:47 AM on Apr. 10, 2011

  • He claims to not know why he is doing these things. I know that boys are curious by nature but this is ridiculous!! Hope I havent offended anyone by replying. Thank you all for your advise :)

    Comment by d0ubletr0uble (original poster) at 11:49 AM on Apr. 10, 2011