Author Topic: Teenagers.....AAARRRRGGGGGHHH!!  (Read 3991 times)

Offline shine

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Teenagers.....AAARRRRGGGGGHHH!!
« on: February 04, 2008, 09:27:12 pm »
Calgon, take me away......

As I have mentioned before, we have sole custody of my husband's son.  He is 16.  Not an easy age...for him, or for us.  He exhibits the typical teen tendency to be lazy, sullen, and dishonest....a dded to the unfortunate fact that he inheirited some of his mother's nasty disposition and flair for melodrama.  Sometimes he is really hard to take.  Like last night...

My husband stupidly tried to talk to him about college....whi ch led to talking about snowboarding.  The kid is completely, totally OBSESSED with snowboarding.  And it has gotten out of hand.  He has no interest in anything else.  He is in Scouts, but doesn't want to participate during the winter because it interferes with snowboarding.  He tries to blow off going with us to see his 81 year old grama if it interferes with snowboarding.  We hardly see him, either...he is either at the snowboarding park or up in his room on his computer looking up stuff about snowboarding.  He has had only one date in two years because "girls don't snowboard".  He is not even interested in getting his Driver's License!  He got his permit in September and could get his license in 3 weeks if he had 60 hours of driving time....but since it Interferes With Snowboarding he only has 15 hours.  I've never known a teen who didn't bust their butt to get their license....but as long as there is snow on the slopes, he doesn't care.

He is even basing college and his entire future on snowboarding.  He wants to go to film school so he can make snowboard movies...and the ONLY school he will consider it University of Utah, because it is close to Park City.
 
This kid is in a very unique and desirable situation, for two reasons:
1.  My father, who is quite wealthy, has offered to pay for his education.  He could go to any school in the country, or abroad for that matter.  There will be no worries about financial aid or scholarships or living expenses or school supplies. 
2. My husband's cousin is a well-respected actor who could help him get into any of the best film schools....a list that UofU is not on.

We have tried to talk to him about this.  We have suggested that he try to go to the best film school possible....he only wants to go where the snowboarding is good.  We have suggested that he not pigeonhole himself by deciding at age 16 that he only wants to make snowboard movies....that he should have a broader focus his first couple years, like in medical school where you learn the basics and pick a specialty later on.  He refuses to listen.  We've told him that we know he likes snowboarding and it is a social outlet for him and he is part of the "cool crowd", but that will cease to matter the day he graduates high school so he shouldn't base his decisions on that.....but he insists.  We have tried to point out that he is going to change so much in the next several years and should give himself as many options as possible until he matures and can better decide on his future....he claims he knows everything and argues like a petulant child.

He says he "doesn't like big cities!"....though the grand total amount of time he's ever spent in one has been 4 days in Fort Lauderdale and 2 days in NYC....he's been in BFE western Maryland his entire life.

He says he "definitely doesn't want to be in the Northeast"....though he's never been further east than Baltimore.  Translation: the mountains out west are bigger and gnarlier.

He says he wants UofU based on the school....thou gh when we tell him that if we go to visit the campus we are going ONLY to the campus and not the slopes, he has a complete melodramatic sh!t fit.  Truth is, we know if he sees the ski slopes that is ALL he will remember....th e campus could look like London after The Blitz for all he cares.

This is a VERY smart kid (got 1850 on his SAT without studying).....but he sure acts immature and dumb.  We don't know how to get through to him.  As I said, he is in a very unique situation....m ost kids can only dream of having the opportunities he has....but all he can see is snowboarding.  I am so sick of hearing it I could scream.  Anyone have any suggestions on this?? 
« Last Edit: February 05, 2008, 07:16:37 am by jabear »
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Offline London_Pyr_Lover

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Re: Teenagers.....AAARRRRGGGGGHHH!!
« Reply #1 on: February 04, 2008, 10:48:34 pm »
First I want to say I'm sorry for your frustrations right now.  then I wanna say that at 16 I was convinced I was going to be an actress, was slated to go to a special theater school (much to my parents chigrin).  I was involved in Theater programs and groups, it was my "thing".  It was the thing I was good at, and enjoyed, and where I knew others who were like me.  My point is I grew out of it.  Although it would've been quite fun to do, I realized that I wouldn't be able to support myself very well, and my interests broadened.  So be patient is all I have to say, and maybe go out to the slopes with him, you never know, you might be a good snow boarder and just not know it!  ;)

Also if he honestly tries to tell you that "Girls don't snowboard" tell him he's full of it, 'cause I've been a girl all my life and I love to snowboard as do most of my girlfriends!

Hang in there, he's only a teen for a few more years, and ya never know when you're gonna miss this!  ;)
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Offline GreatPyr

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Re: Teenagers.....AAARRRRGGGGGHHH!!
« Reply #2 on: February 04, 2008, 11:05:09 pm »
Being a Mother of teens gone past ;D and also my ex hubbys son lived with us from age 5 till 17...First of all Stepparenting is a HARD job in itself,you are to be commended for your postion in this and caring.

Next I would have to say,nothing wrong with snowboarding dreams at all BUT everything in Moderation,if he is that obssesed with 1 particular thing its not Healthy.Now getting him to realize this at 16 is the tough thing...explai ning to him that you will support him in snowboarding but its not to take over his life or other things that are important in life.Sometimes you may have to issue out some tough love to get this point across for his own good,Now he could very well be going through a faze and it will pass.

Did I forget to mention I have a degree in Mental Health ;)
« Last Edit: February 04, 2008, 11:05:56 pm by GreatPyr »
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Nicole

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Re: Teenagers.....AAARRRRGGGGGHHH!!
« Reply #3 on: February 05, 2008, 01:47:48 am »
HAHAHAHHAHA! I'm sorry. I have to laugh. I have a 14 year old daughter that is every bit as obsessed with horses as yours is with snowboarding. She researches different breeds, she makes exhaustive lists of what to feed, how much to feed, how much vet bills are, what the best wormers are, various horse ailments...

Oh, and did I mention she doesn't own a horse?

Anyway, while I know its frustrating to hear about the same dang thing all the time, I think that there is absolutely nothing wrong with it. I think that it shows some pretty amazing resolve for a kid to throw themselves into a particular interest. I encourage my daughter to explore every aspect of horse stuff. She currently wants (and has wanted for about 2 years) to be an equine therion...some thingologist. Its a horse reproductive specialist. She's looking at colleges all over the country for this. We live in Indiana, so when it gets down to it, she's probably going to go to Purdue, but I still let her look and explore and encourage it.

Why is it so wrong for him to want to go to a particular school and learn how to make snowboard movies? Its his dreams, not yours. I say don't worry about it. He has several years left before he's actually making those decisions. If he is as smart as you say, with the clear resolve and determination and FOCUS that he is showing, he is going to be successful no matter what he does. And just ask the adorable Mr. Macy...did all of the most successful film makers go to big name schools? I bet they didn't.


lorim2

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Re: Teenagers.....AAARRRRGGGGGHHH!!
« Reply #4 on: February 05, 2008, 02:01:19 am »
Hey there...I truly feel your pain.  My son is a senior and will turn 18 in March.  At 16 we were fighting him tooth and nail with him bucking every inch of the way.  I finally said scr** it and told him to do whatever he wanted with the school.  Well let me say it only took about a year now every afternoon its like MOM...help me finish this app and can you help me with the info on this school....My Sam is one of the smartest kids I know...it just had to be his idea.  I am proud to say he scored 2180 out of 2400 his first sat try and took it again alogn with the ACT...Hes gonna be just fine and I am sure your teen will too..Just let him think its all his idea...After all they are the ones who have to live with their decision!!  Hope this helps some..

lorim2

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Re: Teenagers.....AAARRRRGGGGGHHH!!
« Reply #5 on: February 05, 2008, 02:03:16 am »
Oh...almost forgot..my kiddo is a computer geek and he still to this day doesnt really want to drive...Hes had his license for a year and has probably driven twice...He just goes with friends or stays home and hes perfectly happy!!

Offline aggghgmom

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Re: Teenagers.....AAARRRRGGGGGHHH!!
« Reply #6 on: February 05, 2008, 04:42:26 am »
OK so did you know my son is going to be a NY Yankee - his obsession is baseball!!  He just popped into the computer room not 5 minutes ago to ask do I know what happens in 41 days - well I didn't - apparently he will be 16 and ready for his permit!!  He keeps telling me all the wonderful things he can do for me when he gets his license.

So my son is a skier aside from baseball and also only wants to go to a school where he will be close to skiing - his choice Penn State - lovely school but darling son do you know that Penn State has a program you are looking for?  I will find SOMETHING at Penn State!!  No dear we find a career path and then the college not the other way around - other issue - Penn State Baseball team is Division 1 top 10 - he will not play baseball there - so we play on 3 - 4 teams travel to indoor facilities all over the county for winter baseball workouts and you want to go to a school where you won't play baseball?? Ugh!!

So I am right in the thick of it with you - we SO want everything for them - so many opportunites that are being handed to them and they are walking away - what is wrong with them - oh yeah they are 16 and misearble teenagers!!
Your stepson is being offered schooling and he definately has the smarts for it - mine also but school work and tests used to come easily now that he has to work at it he is thinking B's are OK; not if you don't try!!  So the deal is when it comes time for the drivers permit I will write to his teachers and if he isn't trying as hard as he can or has any missing assignments he won't be getting that permit!!  It will be hard because he has always been such a good boy but I want him to have every opportunity and can't have him throw his sophomore year away.  Sometimes being a Mom just Su**s.

I feel your pain

Randy

bigdogs@5501

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Re: Teenagers.....AAARRRRGGGGGHHH!!
« Reply #7 on: February 05, 2008, 05:30:05 am »
I think that your situation is really not as bad as what it may seem. I think that for any kid that age to have a dream and the passion to follow the dream is great. He is not doing drugs, he is not getting girls pregnant, he is not out racing the car, you dont have to worry about tickets and him having wrecks.
I have a theory, at 13, aliens take over, you are not going to get this kid back until he is at least 18. At 18 he is going to be a bit more mature and probably a lot more likeable.

I say that if there is money for him to go and persue his passion and get educated, then support him in his desire. So many of us had our dreams but never got to fulfill those dreams and I am sure that there are a lot of us going to jobs each day that have nothing to do with our original dreams.

Can you imagine going to work every day and doing what you absolutely love in life? He may change his mind over the next couple of years, but if he doesnt then he may be one of the best sports film makers of all time.

My nephews passion was baseball, his dad was a football player, but they supported the nephew 100% and he signed with a major league team at 18. He is living his dream.

Good luck, kids are never easy and teenagers are even more difficult. Maybe you guys can take a family vacation to Utah and enjoy watching him live his passion, it may shine a different light on the entire situation for you.

Offline Rosalba

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Re: Teenagers.....AAARRRRGGGGGHHH!!
« Reply #8 on: February 05, 2008, 08:47:50 am »
Enjoy the ride. Having been a teenager not too long ago (23 here), and coming from the inner-city, I have to say I don't think it's that bad. Granted, it sounds like it can be frustrating, but teenage boys (and girls for that matter) can be so much worse. I mean, most of us obsess over something at that age (for me it was film and animation). Snowboarding, in the grand scheme of things, is not a negative thing. It's a sport -he's being active and social. Doesn't sound like he's doing meth, gotten a girl pregnant, or flunked out of school... And, 16 is waaaay young to have anyone seriously think about their future, so I'd advice not to push him too much. He might think he knows, and maybe that is his path, so just support him and let him make his plans. He has plenty of time. Technically, you don't even have to know what you're doing for the first 2 years of college (most college students will change their majors once or twice). And if he changes his mind, guess what: he can transfer  ;)
Really, as long as he's not actually hurting himself or others, try to be as supportive and constructive as you can be as a family. Otherwise, he might just try to prove you wrong and won't feel able to come to you if/when he realizes you are just looking out for him. It's all part of growing up. Puberty dumbs us down -especially boys (it's the testosterone, it makes them bigger, hairier and stupid! -sorry guys  ;D)
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Offline shine

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Re: Teenagers.....AAARRRRGGGGGHHH!!
« Reply #9 on: February 05, 2008, 08:02:20 pm »
I can see everyone's point...that this is his life and he should follow his passion.  I really can.  But I also think that I did not describe the situation properly or in enough detail....maki ng it sound like this is just a kid working toward a dream, when it's not really that positive.

He does do drugs.  He's high fairly frequently.  I don't know how many nights he has come home red-eyed and zoned.  He made a pipe with the wood from his Boy Scout Soapbox Derby car.  This is a really slippery slope for me, because I grew up in a place where marijuana was basically legal and have pretty liberal views about it.  I may not  be the best person to handle this in a responsible parental way and I know it, so I have left that to my husband.  Bad idea....though he is not as liberal as me, he is much more inclined to avoid conflict and coddle his son....so he says NOTHING about the drugs.  Even I would do more than that.

I have no problem with him going to film school, if he has any interest in FILM...but he seems to have no interest in it at all.  He could care less about the different types/genres, the technical aspects, the artistic aspects, etc.  He is not even interested in talking about it...even with Bill, who is obviously a wealth of information on the subject.  He's also not interested in visiting any movie sets with Bill to learn more about the craft.  His only real interest is hanging out on the slopes with snowboarders.  He cannot be a pro boarder himself.  He's not that good.  That may sound harsh....but even he knows it and says it.  So he has latched on to the only other valid excuse for hanging out on the slopes....film ing the snowboarders. 

I am torn between supporting him and giving him a reality check.  Having a dream is great.  But this is not so much a dream as it is just a way to have fun, if that makes sense.  I am all for having fun....but at some point he does need to start growing up and realizing that life is not ALL about having fun.  He *loves* his psychology class at school....is actually taking AP Psych as an *elective* this term....but thinks that being a psychiatrist/psychologist/social worker/etc is not "cool" so has no interest in whether or not a college has a good psych program. 

*SIGH*.  It's just hard to watch him making decisions that seem so immature.  This is one of the reasons I chose not to have children.  I am not good at this.  Another thing I know about myself, lol.  But I fell in love with a man who had a child and a crazy ex, and now I am a full-time stepmom and struggle with these things.....
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chaosndestruction

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Re: Teenagers.....AAARRRRGGGGGHHH!!
« Reply #10 on: February 05, 2008, 08:48:39 pm »
First off, I'm way jealous of him! I'd LOOOOVE to go to film school. I fell in love with being on set 4 years ago when I was an extra for the Ring 2. I loved the atmosphere. Any chance your hubby's cousin would help me out? lol j/k even though I'd love to work on movies. 

Hmmm I don't have much advice to give. Although I didn't have the urge to get my license as soon as I turned 16. I didn't get it until I was 19, I was mostly scared of driving my parents "beasts" and refused until we had a little car of me to learn in.

I do agree on maybe a reality check with him.