Question: I have a 16 years old son. I have had problems with him not studying and lying to me and talking behind my back to my friends. I raised him all by myself until October 08 when his father came into the picture and wanted to have relationship with him. He filled his head with lies about me. And now he hates me more than before. I have gone to court for child support and my son threatened me that I should not go after his father. I don’t understand his hate towards me and his love towards his absent father. Everything that happens is my fault and I don’t know how to behave and what to do. Can you please help? C.
Answer: Dear C.: I don’t know any way around this except to tough it out. Your “ex” and your son are rewriting history and will not accept anything from you that would offer logic and truth…much less gratitude and compassion.
Sixteen is a hard time for most boys…well…most kids. And when a “much-fantasized-about” father magically reappears, it is just too handy and too easy to make the “always-there” mother the scapegoat.
On-the-job parents have to say “no”. And they have to say it a lot. Single parents get a bum rap because there is no one to share that unpleasant job with. Then the absentee parent rides in on his white horse after being totally irresponsible and after having causing endless grief and dazzles the kid with footwork. Sad.
Anything you try to do to minimize what is going on will only make you look worse. A guy who would undermine you after you put in sixteen years of hard work isn’t going to listen to your pleas regarding fairness. And he isn’t going to provide the adult behavior that would focus on what’s best for his son. To top it off, your son doesn’t yet have the maturity to see through what’s going on.
Do your best. Be as fair as you can be, and as I said…tough it out. Many of us have gone through this and it won’t last forever. Also, you may want to read the link and extensive comments on my site entitled “My Son Hates Me” under Parenting Development. You are not alone. Blessings, Luise