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proexpert37, Educator/Life Coach
Category: Parenting
Satisfied Customers: 1374
Experience:  Teacher 20+ years, Parent, Expert Mentor
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I have been in contact with a family for 4 years My 73 year

Customer Question

I have been in contact with a family for 4 years My 73 year old friend had to take in her son and his daughter and stepson the mother off these children has been deemed unfit by the courts and never see the kids or calls them. They were in counselling by the local authority for two years they said that the children were ok at the end of this time.
The boy is 12 and lies about everything to the point that if you ask him a question you know he is going to lie, he sneaks around in the middle of night getting into my friends personal stuff he breaks things he knows she loves, both children are asked to do chores at the weekend he has broken 7 vacuum cleaners in 4 years in the hope he will not asked to do his chores. The latest thing is stealing he stole one of his friends mothers ipod said he found it after hiding it in his back pack for a week, my friend can not afford any more counseling for him they have tried taking privileges away from him but nothing seems to work. Please can you give me some advice as I fear for my friends health. The father of these children is unemployed at moment and is attending the University of Phoenix to get a more up to date computer degree.
away from him but nothing seems to work
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Parenting
Expert:  proexpert37 replied 5 years ago.
Hello and Thank You for using Just Answer. I am sorry to hear about the problems that your friend is having. The son obviously knows right from wrong. Therefore, he is receiving a great deal of negative attention for his behavior. Now it is time to flip the script and try something completely different. A behavior contract needs to be implemented for each day of the week. It should list the behaviors that your friend wants the son to manifest.

Example: M. T. W. Th. Fri. Sat. Sun....

1. I will not take things from anyone that do not belong to me.
2. I will not sneak around the house at night.
3. I will tell the truth to all individuals.
4. I will treat others' belongings with care and respect........etc., etc.

Then review the list each day with the son. At the end of the day, he initials each behavior that he completed successfully. Then at the end of the week, review the contract. If he had a great week, he needs to be rewarded with a social treat or outing. The focus here is to teach him to be more accountable for his own behavior and to focus more on his positive behavior. This process will not happen overnight. It may take weeks or months but be persistent, consistent, and patient. Of course he may still misbehave here and there so limit all of his fun things and activities. His good behavior charts will enable him to earn them back. Additionally if he attends a public school, there should be a counselor or psychologist at school at least once a week that he can meet with for free. Contact the school office to see what types of services are available.

Hope this provided you with some insight. Have a great day.
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
1`q`They have already tried the above but he lied about that too. His mother was a pathological lire and he learned from her, to him I think it is survival he says whatever he thinks you want to hear
Expert:  proexpert37 replied 5 years ago.
Hello...Thank you for responding. If the above mentioned ideas have already been tried, then your best bet is to contact the school counselor or psychologist. He/she can steer one in the right direction personally or give additional references even for free to low cost services. Your choices are very limited and that is probably the best one. He needs on going counseling to help him learn intervention strategies to change his ways. Also, contact your local police or sheriff station. Oftentimes, they have programs for at risk youth.