My Teenage Son

My teenage son puts my character to the greatest test ever.  My patience are challenged beyond anything I have ever encountered.  The stress levels I am currently coping with are as high as any I have experienced in my entire life.  This is and has been one of the most difficult times of my life.

But let’s be clear.  There is no doubt that he is trying.  All of his teachers vouch that his attitude at school has changed significantly.  He has improved his grades and has worked on his math with my help for almost two months.  With a little luck he will get a very respectable mark in math – which will see him into the university entrance program for grade 11.

So why does the stress and worry continue?  Perhaps it’s because I worry that he’ll make one mistake that will jeopardize everything.  Frankly there are still times when he does things that compromise himself sufficiently to jeopardize everything.  Fortunately he has not been caught.  Some days things are reasonably good.  Other days are horrible.  A good part of the stress is not knowing what I’m dealing with from one moment to the next.

Raising a Teenager

Raising a teenager is one of the most difficult things I have ever done.  I’ll concede that this teenager may be a little more challenging than some, but I’ve never felt my life so much out of control as I do now.  We went to the movie last night.  It was a great thing to do.  We both had a good time.  After the movie we discussed it for awhile then I went to bed.  He stayed up all night – went to bed after 5:00 in the morning – then slept until 5:00 this afternoon.  Now we’re waiting on him to do some homework.  So what are the chances of him getting up for school tomorrow morning?  And so it goes.

Unit Test — 75%

We had a break today – us parents that is.  My wife and I took the afternoon off and went out for lunch.  Then we spent the rest of the afternoon in a few of the local art galleries.  It was pleasant – we should do that more often.  It was a nice break from the teenager as well.

Oh yes, my teenager’s math teacher sent home an email.  He got 75% on his unit test.  That’s a good mark considering he hadn’t done any math for a year and a half.  Wow!  There is nothing like living on the edge.  Now we can get to work on getting him ready for his final exam.  One day soon I’m going to stop doubting that kid.  Credit where credit due.

I learned a lot about how he learns.  For him practice is not as important.  He needs to use a new concept three times and he’s got it.  He gets frustrated very easily.  He gets confused between something he wants for himself – a university entrance mark – and something he thinks I making him do against his will – math.  But then he is only 16.


Never Cry Wolf

Yesterday I posted that the math test would be today – well it wasn’t.  Everyone is disappointed, including my son.  We had prepped for it, but it didn’t happen.  Now we are expecting it tomorrow.  It could be said that a delay of one day is a good thing, but it’s not a good thing.  My son was ready to write it.  Then he had to deal with the disappointment of no test.  We will prep again tonight, but that gives us one less night to prepare for the final exam.  So here I am once again saying, “Say a little prayer for me.”  You’re likely thinking never cry wolf.

Long-boarding & Math

We are back at it, math that is.  Today is Saturday, he agreed to do math two times today. We did a few questions early in the afternoon, then he went long-boarding with his friends.  He agreed to be back by seven to some more math – he got back shortly after seven.  Even though he has bad days, I must admit he is trying.  Can I ask for more?

Right at the moment he’s down stairs working on his math.  He wants to go long-boarding again after he’s done.  I’m fine with that.  Some responsibility on his part should garner a few extra hours of long-boarding.  Although there is plenty of trouble he could get into long-boarding, it is good exercise and a lot better the alternative – hanging out.

Now it’s after midnight, he’s back now.  A good day I’d say.

Consciousness and Teenagers

He drives me crazy.  After all we went through last night he went to his mother and asked her if she would ask me to continue to do math with him.  Maybe teenagers are meant to help adults grow up.  Maybe if we can survive the 3 – 7 years of putting up with them we have passed the grade.  We then get to carry on with our lives at some higher level of consciousness.

End of Math

Once again things didn’t go very well with math.  He refused to come upstairs.  He said he wanted to do his math downstairs.  The problem with him doing it down stairs is that he takes forever to get to it.  When he finally gets to it he gets frustrated and takes another 45 minutes to settle down.  We got into a little stand-off.

To complicate matters my wife had company in the house.  I got into my car and went for a drive – a long drive.  When I got back I decided I would relent and let him start his math downstairs.  Why should I care where he does his math.  So I took his math book down to him, but it looks like he isn’t going to do it anyway.  I suppose the math tutoring is over.  He will have to deal with the consequences of not passing math.

I’m have a problem dealing with this.  I am angry and disappointed.  If he had put in a reasonable effort he could have raised his mark.  But it is not possible to make someone learn math.  He refuses to do it so that is the end of it.

Day Off for My Teenage Son

A few days ago I was trying to get my teenage son to settle down and do some math.  After about fifteen minutes with no success he said he needed a day off – we had been doing math every day for several weeks without a break.  Nevertheless, I was in no mood to take a day off.  A few minutes later I replied, “Why don’t we just quit doing math altogether.”  He considered my statement and then replied, “That’s something entirely different.”  All of a sudden I realized that my teenage son was being a lot more mature about things than me.  ”Okay,” I said, “one day.”