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proexpert37, Educator/Life Coach
Category: Parenting
Satisfied Customers: 1374
Experience:  Teacher 20+ years, Parent, Expert Mentor
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My 17 year old son just recently went against our house rules

Customer Question

My 17 year old son just recently went against our house rules and had a huge party while my husband and I were out of town for the weekend (as we thought we could trust him). When we (my husband and I) try to talk to him about his actions and possible consequences my son gets extremely angry and belligerent.

He has been under a psychologist care for the past 8+ years with dx of ADHD, mood disorder, depression and on medication for such. It's always been a fight and struggle for us to get him to be responsible around the house (even when he's taking his meds).
After this last event, he is now refusing to take his medication and talk with his psychologist. The psychologist says we should play tough, call his bluff and tell him if he won't allow us to be "parents" that the door is open for him to leave.

A parent's job is to push their kids down the right path, but whenever we push our son, he pushes back harder (harder than a normal 17 year old would), becomes belligerent and then threatens us. There is NO accountability or remorse and he has the attitude of entitlement. At this point we have backed off for fear of the violence that may or may not occur and have become hostages in our own home.

I am now at a complete loss as to what to do next. I know as a parent I need to lay down consequences for his actions, but feel I can’t enforce anything at this time.

It’s been over a week since this last event occurred (silent treatment is in full force) and we are tired of being held hostage in our own home and tired of sleeping with one eye open in fear he might do something to hurt us while we're sleeping... I want my son to know we love and care about him unconditionally (which he won't hear or believe - we've told him several times) and not sure if kicking him out is the right answer (although the doctor seems to think my son won't take us up on the offer). I'm willing to do the "tough love" thing, but I also don't know what kind of legalities there are in CA for us a parents, if he does something terribly wrong.

Any suggestions or help you can offer would be appreciated.......
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Parenting
Expert:  proexpert37 replied 5 years ago.
Hello and Thank You for using Just Answer. I would be more than happy to assist you with a Parenting expert answer. If you would like a legal related answer, you would need to let me know and I could direct your question to our Legal expert department. Let me know. Thank you so much.
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
i'm looking for legal help AND parental expert advice. Do I pursue showing my son the door and let him go? Are there other parental avenues available?

Thank you!
Expert:  proexpert37 replied 5 years ago.
Hello and Thank You for responding. Your son is at the age where he thinks he owns the world and can do and say anything. Your views as the parents do not matter. Since he has been under the care of a psychologist who knows him well, it would be wise to follow his/her advice because there comes a point where there is not much more you can do. You have reached that point unfortunately. If your son still has a ways to go until he turns 18, you may want to try an alternative approach and send him away to a boot camp type school that caters to ADHD students. Additionally, if your son threatens to physically harm you or actually attempts to, please call the police. Furthermore in seeking assistance, you can also try calling the local juvenile services department in your area or even the police department to see if they have programs or services for youth that need direction beyond parental requests. There is a bright light at the end of the tunnel. You are not the first parent dealing with this issue and you will not be the last.

Have a good day.