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Frustration Level Nearing a Thousand Dollars

May 21st, 2015 at 05:07 pm

Someone (not me) in my family has lost a rented clarinet. He stopped using it because the keys needed repair, he had been told more than a handful of times to bring it home so it can go to the music shop for repair.

He told me it was in the band room, I learned from his band teacher he said it was in his locker. It is in neither place. He opened some unsecured lockers at school, telling me he was using one, he forgot the locker number. It's not in any locker.

I told him five times to soak his retainer in vinegar, as is weekly custom. I see three empty retainer cases in his room but no retainer. Today he jumped out his bedroom window rather than leave for school the normal way, walking out the front door.

I don't hit my child, being the victim of physical violence doesn't help anyone evolve into an emotionally healthy person who knows how to love and trust. I do remind him, but why do I have to remind him all the time? If he does things the first time, the most immediate, intellectually lazy, briefest time, he wouldn't be losing expensive items. That makes sense to me but it doesn't make sense to him. He doesn't explain his thinking. He repeatedly leaves things until I am at an anger peak, which doesn't resolve anything. I don't understand why he doesn't do his homework until he's goaded a fourth time. Where is the adolescent win in this? "I'm setting boundaries by deliberately not doing anything constructive or mandated, without any superior alternative!" That's a win? Not in my book.

I don't understand this behaviour. But it could also be that I am developmentally impaired, because I also don't understand how distracted driving reduces accidents on the road, don't understand how a twelve-second school-dictated recitation of blahblah is critical to achieving academic excellence, how sitting out of an election keeps mealy-mouthed lobbyist-teat-suckers out of office, don't understand the win in speeding up to stoplights that are already red, or speeding past a red light to stop at another one one block ahead, don't understand how texting is more important than the safe operation of a train, don't understand why violent schizophrenics are allowed to own guns in my state so they can kill my friends, relatives, and relatives' friends. I don't understand why criminals get neck tattoos, aren't they clearly identifying marks? When I go on my killing spree you can be sure I'm gonna get my facial birthmark removed. I don't understand why Microsoft would stop its Family Safety Services for Windows 7, which allows administrators of a machine to set time and filtering limits on non-administrator accounts, leaving me no other alternative but to babysit a teen while he uses the computer, or buy some time-limit software. I don't understand why his father doesn't help me with these problems, but rather coaxes our child into gaming on the PC. I don't understand why dumbass overseas "tech support" telephonies with autodialers would repeat-call numbers, surely belonging to mobile phones, even the ancient close-to-useless one I have, keep calling history. What will they say if I ever have a live connection and ask "you called six times but left no message. Why do you think I'd still have a virus on my computer six weeks later? why do you think I have no spyware or malware busters on my PC? Why do you think I run Windows?"

I know I am low on comprehension. Talk to me like I'm five.

10 Responses to “Frustration Level Nearing a Thousand Dollars”

  1. AnotherReader Says:

    Make him pay the $1,000. Work, allowance, savings, whatever he has or can earn. No games, treats, or anything else until he has paid for the clarinet. Get on the same page with his father on this so you are not undermined.

  2. snafu Says:

    wow! I'd be royally upset. Agree, father and you must agree on each point so that super smart DS can't play one agains the other. Don't know age but DS seems to display responsibility avoidance repeatedly. One coping tool may be signed contract. Write a one paragraph contract detailing DS will do 1,2,3 by date; consequences are 1,2,3 option 2...

    2 chores like vacuum 2 rooms like kitchen & entry followed by hands and knee wash those floors in a specific time frame to meet your typical standard of clean.

  3. snafu Says:

    arrgh computer is dropping sentences and I can't fix it!

  4. PauletteG Says:

    I AM royally upset. I am cleaning out his room. I explain this action thusly: what can one misplace in a minimalist space? If DS & expensive appliances and instruments don't mix, why should DS & scattered Lego, baseball cards, books mix as well?

    I had taped "Evening Procedures" and "Morning Procedures" on the outsides of our bathroom door and his bedroom door. I don't have proof yet he can follow verbal instructions beyond three steps, thus they're printed. I made a "Hipster DIY PDA" card kit with clip so he can know what action to take, what happens next, et cetera. All I see now is the title card. It's not as if I am ignorant of his limitations or unwilling to try strategies to help him surmount attention deficits.

  5. SecretarySaving Says:

    I would suggest reading the book "Wild at Heart" by John Eldredge.

  6. My English Castle Says:

    Is he twelve? Because a certain 12-year-old that I might know has similar issues, except a math book, not a clarinet. And sat in the planter tonight to do her homework--a big brick planter filled with dirt.

  7. PauletteG Says:

    @My English Castle He's 13.5, I may get Teenagers with ADHD out from the library in the next half-hour. I know that age spurs his peak physical growth velocity, and it's hormones that send out signals to send hair to the testes and underarms, pump up the ballsack, stretch the bones out 4 inches per year, and scramble the brains. It'd be effin' great if his ballsack had some memory cells, as that's expanding, but no.

  8. laura/deacon's wife Says:


    Oh, I've managed (barely) to survive the bipolar "I hate you. Don't leave me." phase with two teen-aged girls 12.5 months apart. It didn't help that with the first one, I gave birth to myself (in looks and temperament) and the second one was so different. Seemed that I just when I thought I was ahead with one, I was really behind with two. The sons are coming up (almost 13, 11, 10) and I am hoping they fall into the "father" category when it comes to issues. All I can suggest is one day at a time. And maybe a serious behavior management plan, with consequences clearly stated.

  9. wowitsawonderfullife Says:

    I think it's fair to say that this is sadly typical of a young male teenager. I think it was summed up beautifully with the "dumbass" comment. Seriously, how the species continues is beyond me. On the other hand, at least I don't have girls. Now that's another story and I can't imagine how I would handle that!

  10. CB in the City Says:

    Yep. Been there. Done that. Two boys, total madness and complete irresponsibility. Now they are both lovely men with families. It happens. You just have to get through it.

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