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BM's non existing parenting style is taking over our house

Posted by on Jun. 2, 2015 at 1:20 PM
  • 31 Replies

BM is NCP. Since SS has been spending more time at her house (11 weeks a year, long distance visitation, although she only lives 1.5 hours away) he thinks that he has to play video games, computer games, and watch tv all day long. He is unable to do anything else. He is bored out of his mind unless he has a screen in front of him. At Bm's house he does this all day long. 

DH has addressed the issue and grounded him from video games. The result is that SS will whine all day long. He is sent to his room or put in time out for whining. However, this causes more whining. I don't really know what else to do about this, dh doesn't either.

SS is 11. Before BM came back into his life he was a happy child who almost never whined and did not have a desire for video games, but she introduced him to all these things.

SS is already seeing a counselor because BM is very manipulative and he will not tell her "no" or how he feels out of fear to hurt her feelings or that he might not be able to see her again. She will start crying in front of him if she does not get her way. This is even about pity things. 

BM also is a former drug addict you is still exibiting that behavior (poor me, I'm the victim, it's always everybody else's fault).

Suggestions on what to do?

by on Jun. 2, 2015 at 1:20 PM
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by Silver Member on Jun. 2, 2015 at 1:23 PM
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What do you give him to do when you say no games/tv?  Is anyone willing to go play outside with him?  Does he have friends over?  If BM introduced him to it then did he not have a game system or tv before?

by Member on Jun. 2, 2015 at 1:28 PM
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I have an 11 yo girl. She is the same not as bad now. Maybe just a phase ... I think the reason for the change may have more to do with his age changing not his situation imho.
by on Jun. 2, 2015 at 1:44 PM

why did DH ground him from video games? what did he do to get grounded?  Did he just get grounded for no reason or did he do something wrong?

He seems really bored. Why did your DH send him to his room, instead of trying to help him find something to entertain himself with? What kinds of entertainmnet has your DH offered him?

by Platinum Member on Jun. 2, 2015 at 1:59 PM
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So his behavior with CP is the fault of the long distance NCP? 

And since when does she only live 1.5 hours away?  I thought plane tickets have been an issue for visitation? 

by Bronze Member on Jun. 2, 2015 at 2:02 PM
You're blaming the parent he rarely sees for issues in your home?

He's 11. They are whiny and bored at that age. What has been done to find a solution?
by Member on Jun. 2, 2015 at 2:10 PM

Plane tickets were the issue for about 1 year as we moved for DH's job. We've been back in state for about 1 year, but BM does not want to go back to EOWE visitation. We don't know why. Maybe it's easier for her this way as she has someone taking care of him while she is working.

Quoting GlockMom:

So his behavior with CP is the fault of the long distance NCP? 

And since when does she only live 1.5 hours away?  I thought plane tickets have been an issue for visitation? 

by Bronze Member on Jun. 2, 2015 at 2:13 PM
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The behavior change is more indicative of age than what he gets to do on "vacation".

Every parent had had to deal with kids that come back from somewhere that let them video game binge. Every teacher EVER has had to deal with at least a dozen kids at a time that would rather be playing video games. Somehow they manage to handle it.

Has your husband taken some teen/tween parenting classes or discussed his methods with a therapist who might be able to help him find something more effective?
by Member on Jun. 2, 2015 at 2:25 PM

I don't think it's age related if you have a child that does not really show much interest in video games and after just 3-4 weeks with BM all of a sudden does not want to do anything else.

by Gold Member on Jun. 2, 2015 at 2:31 PM
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First, this isn't BM at ALL...he's 11, has found what he likes to do and as a preteen is simply getting older and more forceful and difficult about pushing for what he wants

A NCBM with such limited time has no impact on the day to day behavior in your home...what you have is a disconnect in have a kid who's personality does not respond to your discipline techniques...

Time outs do not work for a 11 year old

Normal 11 year olds do not whine unless some response you are giving him for it is somehow reinforcing it or rewarding it in some way you aren't seeing.

Start evaluating your disciplining/punishing techniques and changing them, what you are doing in YOUR home is not working. DO NOT focus on BM or you will for sure miss fixing this completely, she is not the problem.

Somehow somewhere he is getting an active reward or attention for his behavior when you say say as discipline or punishment you "ground" him from video games because you want to limit screen time. That will serve to simply make him want it more than ever...It's like a diet with no end in sight...take away the chocolate cake...the ONLY thing on my mind...chocolate cake...

1. Don't punish screen with screen time...LIMIT screen time...negotiate with the kid...11 years understand expectations, limits, and negotiation...tell him he has set amount of screen time a day to use at his discretion, the rest of the time must be spent doing other things. Use lockouts on devices if you have to. Most devices have lockouts where you set the amount of time the device can be used each day. Start there

2. Try instead of punishing or grounding, a technique called extinguishing. I have a difficult ADHD preteen. The more you try to explain, talk, or convince him you are right about a disagreement, the more entrenched, argumentative, whiney, and stubborn about how he is right he gets. I use extinguishing. I don't ground him, useless...he just becomes incentive to behave, he knows he's in trouble and he just makes sport of making everyone else miserable during his grounding, in his mind, he's going to be miserable for a set amount of time, he'll take us down with him...I have to motivate him to get back on the good behavior rails. I send him to his room and tell him not to come out until he has pulled himself together and can behave appropriately, no whining, annoying, arguing, etc. The second it happens again, back to his room until he truly pulls it together. It removes him from getting attention for bad behavior, isolates him to being miserable alone so he doesn't feed off of making everyone else miserable, motivates him to behave to rejoin the family and the activities he wants to do. Truly works like a charm. I pull all bad and good reward for any bad behavior. He is my child who doesn't mind any attention, bad or good for his behavior, as long as he is getting attention.

I don't know if this may help...

by Platinum Member on Jun. 2, 2015 at 2:34 PM
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BM doesn't have nearly as much influence as you give her credit for.  She has 11 weeks, that means you/BF have 41 weeks. 

Kids his age (I have YDS12 and ODS17) are beginning to be influenced by their peers.  You're telling me he doesn't have friends who whine about not getting to play video games all day or who don't want to just play video games?  This is how they are, if they're allowed to be. 

When you/BF take away his video games, what alternatives are offered to him?  Does he enjoy those?  (did he ever?)  Have you (DH really) asked him what he'd rather do to earn time to play his video games?  Compromise.  Work with him.  Allow them for X hours (or an hour) a day or one day a week IF X, Y, and Z are done before that day of the week (incentive).  Screen time only in the car or only when someone specific is over or pick a rule for it.  Make up a 'I'm bored' or "I'm whining" box/jar and have chores or fun stuff to choose from for him to do. Is he alone when he has the screens/games taken away?  Does he have friends to play with?  Will he be going to BMs soon for the summer (or part of the summer)?  Let him repaint his room or pick another project he likes and get him involved in something.  Set him up designing a new game (to spark his creativity). 

There are many things you can do with a bored 11yo besides blaming the other home. 

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