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Old 06-12-2007, 07:54 PM   #1
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feeling rejected by my teenage son

my 18 year old nephew, who is definitely more like a son to me, has been pulling away from me more and more, talking to me like i'm dirt, and we used to be so close. Not sure what to do - is this normal?

 
Old 06-12-2007, 09:48 PM   #2
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Re: feeling rejected by my teenage son

Well it is to a degree my teenage son lives with his grandparents and went through a phase where I was dirt underneath his feet type thing. He was really angry over life and how it had been for him growing up. We are in the process of working things out. Perhaps asking your nehew what is going on might be a starter. If it continues have you thought about talking to his parents? Or maybe giving him space and when he starts treating you badly perhaps letting him know that until he can act like (use what words or phrases he had acted like before perhaps with respect etc.) that perhaps he should go home. Just a thought. Does he use drugs? Maybe stressed over something?

Eme

 
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Old 06-12-2007, 09:57 PM   #3
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Re: feeling rejected by my teenage son

Jesusbuddha, and any other parents struggling with rebellious teenagers, I'm your guy, lol.

Just tell me what's up, and I will be more than happy to give out the answers.


Oh, and Jesusbuddha, do you listen to the Clarks by any chance? There's a line in one of their songs where they sing "Jesus, Buddha, teach me how to pray," and they're from Pittsburgh, which is also in Pennsylvania, hehe.

Last edited by keyboardplaya; 06-12-2007 at 09:59 PM.

 
Old 06-13-2007, 07:56 AM   #4
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Question Re: feeling rejected by my teenage son

Quote:
Originally Posted by jesusbuddha71 View Post
my 18 year old nephew, who is definitely more like a son to me, has been pulling away from me more and more, talking to me like i'm dirt, and we used to be so close. Not sure what to do - is this normal?

This is where questions need to be asked; and if there is no response, some snooping should be done.

Questions:

1) Does your nephew have a new group that he's hanging out with?

2) Is he drinking? Using/experimenting with drugs?

3) Did he have a girlfriend and they broke up or are having problems?

4) Is he having concerns about his gender, and doesn't know who he can talk to? (I'm not being silly or sarcastic or anything--I'm very serious here. People have been tormented by this.)

5) Has he been molested and he's been keeping it to himself (Not that you would know this... but have you observed any behaviour that might make you wonder?)

6) How long have you noticed this behaviour in your nephew?


I think the vast majority of us on this board were in our teens once, and we know when a person starts acting "strangely" towards us, there's some kind of outside influence.

I have a teen child and yes, I will question, snoop and everything else, because I AM MOMMA and I'm going to protect my child from the crap others can get my child into.
I will find out what's going on. Period.


J/B, I'd ask your brother/sister if they've noticed your nephew's change in attitude and ask them if they know what's going on with him.
They may not know, and he more than likely won't tell them.
But they need to check out the "friends" he's hanging out with. A lot of times, these so-called "friends" have a heavy influence on kids -- especially teens because they're trying to "find themselves" and see where they fit in.

Then again, maybe they're just in need of some personal space.

Last edited by jujubeez725; 06-13-2007 at 08:04 AM.

 
Old 06-13-2007, 01:25 PM   #5
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Re: feeling rejected by my teenage son

Quote:
Originally Posted by keyboardplaya View Post
Jesusbuddha, and any other parents struggling with rebellious teenagers, I'm your guy, lol.

Just tell me what's up, and I will be more than happy to give out the answers.


Oh, and Jesusbuddha, do you listen to the Clarks by any chance? There's a line in one of their songs where they sing "Jesus, Buddha, teach me how to pray," and they're from Pittsburgh, which is also in Pennsylvania, hehe.
He is just very short and apathetic towards me, and he never used to be. Whenever I try to call him on it, it erupts into a major fight. He just got a girlfriend recently, and now wants to spend all his time with her. He seems as if his attitude since dating her has been amped up. Also, when I try to schedule time to do things with him, he hardly ever responds to that any more.

 
Old 06-13-2007, 07:15 PM   #6
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Re: feeling rejected by my teenage son

Well, the girlfriend thing is definitely a big factor of change in any relationship. That part I wouldn't worry about, because he'll eventually start spending more time with you again. Especially if this is his first girlfriend, he NEEDS to spend as much time with her as possible. He obviously loves her a great deal, not that it gives him any right to cast you aside. Hate to break it to you, but you'll really just have to wait it out.

One thing I guess you could try, since you're close enough with him to consider him your son, is to offer some time for all three of you. For example, I've had my aunt and uncle in Maryland offer to let me and my girlfriend stay at their house and do some sightseeing in D.C. My grandma and grandpa offered the same thing for their house in Florida. So that's one possible loophole. It tends to work, at least as a way of showing that you're still cool, even if the plans don't work out. Of course, there are certain things that couples do together that they can't when hanging out with the guy's uncle (we all know what those things could be), but your nephew may still like the idea of being with two people that he likes, and showing his girlfriend a couple sides of his family.

Even if you live in the same state, or even the same building as your nephew, you could take them out to dinner, or go fishing, whatever it is you used to do with your nephew. Just realize that, especially for first-timers, a girlfriend usually changes the personality of a guy. Unless he's part of the 1% of the male population that gets millions of girls on a regular basis, he's probably desperate to hang onto this girl, as I was with my girlfriend. He might start taking on certain parts of her personality, and might even become overly sensitive to her needs. Just try to be as nice to both of them as possible, don't accuse him of ditching you or anything, and make an attempt to stay on "his level." Don't end up resenting his girlfriend or the fact that he has a girlfriend. My parents have done that to a point, and it has some VERY negative effects.

Hopefully that gives you some help. If I'm nowhere in the ballpark, perhaps you could elaborate on the situation.

Last edited by keyboardplaya; 06-13-2007 at 07:17 PM.

 
Old 06-14-2007, 07:36 AM   #7
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Re: feeling rejected by my teenage son

Quote:
Originally Posted by jesusbuddha71 View Post
He is just very short and apathetic towards me, and he never used to be. Whenever I try to call him on it, it erupts into a major fight. He just got a girlfriend recently, and now wants to spend all his time with her. He seems as if his attitude since dating her has been amped up. Also, when I try to schedule time to do things with him, he hardly ever responds to that any more.
He just got a girlfriend recently, and now wants to spend all his time with her. He seems as if his attitude since dating her has been amped up.

Oh, ok then! He's got a girlfriend and he just wants to spend time with her... that's all.

 
Old 06-15-2007, 05:50 PM   #8
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Re: feeling rejected by my teenage son

hey - thanks for your reply. Your words made a lot of sense. Here's the thing - I am REALLY close to this kid. My own family is kinda broken, and I don't even get a long with my own brother all that well, so this kid became like my little brother and best friend in a way. We did like everything together for years. He would ALWAYS be here at my house, just even to watch TV or grab a bite to eat. Now, I barely see him, and when he does come over, he brings his laptop and sits on it for most of his stay, chatting with his girlfriend. I don't know how to tell him that this hurts so much! I feel like I have lost him! I also feel a little silly actually feeling this way. It almost sounds juvenile, like I am back in grade school. Do you think it's abnormal for an adult to feel so rejected, jealous, and possessive? Be honest..

 
Old 06-15-2007, 07:09 PM   #9
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Re: feeling rejected by my teenage son

Yes I do think it is normal to an extent. My son for instance spends all his time with his friends or his father's family. He talks to me when he gets around to it. And yes I am jealous and envious of that and have been. I think to some extent it is that part that wishes to hold on when they are needing us to let go of them. They want to be adults and somehow we want things to stay a certain way which it seldom does. I hope it gets better.

Eme

 
Old 06-15-2007, 09:46 PM   #10
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keyboardplaya HB User
Re: feeling rejected by my teenage son

I completely understand that you have a close bond with your nephew. I really hope he comes around eventually, because I know I've never been that close with anyone in my family. My uncle was and is pretty cool, but he lives at least 3 hours away (and he's my closest-living relative).

 
Old 06-16-2007, 07:42 AM   #11
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Re: feeling rejected by my teenage son

Hi JB71,

It sounds like your nephew is going through a very natural developmental process. Kids need to begin to break away, develop relationships outside the family and test their new wings. That is hard for him too probably which may explain why he's been a little short with you. The important thing to realize is that this is normal and absolutely necessary if he is going to one day be a fully functioning self-sufficient adult. It is healthy for him even is uncomfortable for you both.

Yes, it's hard watching them venture from the nest but try to be happy for him. You still have a relationship with him but it will likely be different as his life changes. Maybe read up on how people cope with the empty nest syndrome...that's probably similar to what you're feeling.

Good luck to you both!

 
Old 06-19-2007, 01:30 PM   #12
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Re: feeling rejected by my teenage son

Hi all,

Thanks for all the advice you have given me. I have been striving to remain in my nephew's life, but it has been a struggle, because of thsi overwhelming sense that I have that he is exasperated with me, he feels as if I am being overbearing. I don't want to give him this impression, and yet I want so much to be a regular part of his life. Question: should I just take in stride all of his newly acquired attitude, machismo, and disrespectful speech? Is it normal for a teen to go through this with parents, or people he may see as parent figures? I think I may be taking his words and actions too personally! I just don't handle rejection very well, especially from people I am very close to. Any advice , anyone?

 
Old 06-19-2007, 01:50 PM   #13
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Re: feeling rejected by my teenage son

I completly agree with the other poster about the "empty nest syndrome". It is important for a person to find themselves, to test the water and see how the real world works. As a child gets older its important to give them more and more line so they can grow. At the same time the adults in his life need to lay down the guidelines and maintain them. If you let him walk all over you now he always willl. He is testing to see what he can and can't get away with. Initially he might get mad and upset but he will understand that you can not be treated in a negative fashion

take care
trg247
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Old 06-19-2007, 03:59 PM   #14
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Re: feeling rejected by my teenage son

thank you for your posst. Can I ask you something? When this happened to you, did it bring sadness to your heart? Silly as it may sound, the situation is making me heartsick. I need to know if that is a normal part of the whole process, or if I am just too needy towards him...

 
Old 06-20-2007, 09:04 AM   #15
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Re: feeling rejected by my teenage son

Quote:
Originally Posted by jesusbuddha71 View Post
Hi all,

Thanks for all the advice you have given me. I have been striving to remain in my nephew's life, but it has been a struggle, because of thsi overwhelming sense that I have that he is exasperated with me, he feels as if I am being overbearing. I don't want to give him this impression, and yet I want so much to be a regular part of his life. Question: should I just take in stride all of his newly acquired attitude, machismo, and disrespectful speech? Is it normal for a teen to go through this with parents, or people he may see as parent figures? I think I may be taking his words and actions too personally! I just don't handle rejection very well, especially from people I am very close to. Any advice , anyone?
When kids hit their teens (especially boys), they "start smelling themselves" --which is an old expression we have here.
It simply means they get "grown" or think they are "the stuff".

He's learning who he is, and how to handle certain situations on his own.
As a few have said here, it's the "empty nest" syndrome.

Don't worry about feeling rejected; he's not rejecting you. He's trying to find his way around, and get some independence. He may feel like you're "smothering" him, so he acts out in order to get the "space" he needs, rather than just saying so.

As far as the disrespect goes, NO, you don't tolerate that.
If he wants to be away from you or mistreats you, don't open your door for him ANOTHER TIME until he treats you in a respectful manner.

Don't let him use you, either.

 
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