Well, just to keep you up to date. M______ had his prelim hearing on Tuesday. The attorney for "our" side (who we had never met and had never spoken to) told the referee we were unwilling to take him home. We did tell the ref. we would take him home with some restrictions. He told M______ he would be having another hearing and would he be willing to go home with his parents until then. He never once turned around to acknowledge us at all and said to the referee "How long would that be for?" Obviously this killed us, but he did not see our reaction, nor do I believe we showed one.
The ref. found out if would be 30 days, and he went through the restrictions, and M______ said he would go home. We picked him up from the Juv. center. He did not speak to us. We went to pick up the 9 yr old from our friends. It was only then that he finally started to talk to him. By the end of the night, he was at least talking to us. It was very strained to say the least. He is denying what happened. He is saying his court appointed attorney (that we have to pay for) that he can bring charges against us for 1. child abuse, 2. sexual harassment 3. he can plead innocent. We tried to explain to him that he could go ahead and try, but his record compared to ours speaks for itself and we as his parents would not do something like this to our own child unless it were true.
Just for your info (if you don't know) we are required to pay for each day he is housed at the youth home at $170.00 per day. We pay 100% because of our income. The 4 day stay alone is $680.00 plus the $300.00 attorney fee--go ahead and add up the 30 days they were contemplating!! No wonder more parents don't seek out the police/legal recourse.
We do feel our son needs help, but not to be put in the youth home. He came home with all kinds of stories of other boys with murder charges, armed robbery, etc. and he is a runaway and domestic assault (never punched, more of pushed/shoved but still caused bruising).
Anyway, we did change his school. He "wasn't going" that first day, was 10 minutes late, and tried every ploy/plead for me to change my mind at the last minute (after we had done the paperwork). At one point he did say "I didn't think you would really do it," which was an eye-opener to me. He blames parents for taking away both being at same school as his girlfriend and no lacrosse at the current school. I keep putting this back onto him as the one who chose it. He has not made the bus one day yet. We are working on this, and I'm sure he feels like a baby since most 11th graders drive. We have dangled the carrot of driving to school in several weeks if he "earns" it back.
He has asked for the phone (which he uses when we're not home). I'm sure, internet privilege, and to go to a football game, go tanning, and spend the night at a friend's all with NO answers as he is limited to his home, school (for school only, no extracurriculars), and work as part of his probation. He did give me a difficult time with this but did stay home. His girlfriend is also "off limits" as far as ANY contact--phone, internet, etc. but I know he is talking with her. I have yet to reach her parents to tell them about the terms of his probation (they did come over on Monday with the girl to discuss the relationship and agree it is a destructive one and would try to keep them separated at least for a while).
His counselor has not helped (as you predicted) and feels his behavior is escalating, and he may be having mood swings. M______ had an appt. last night, was "not going", told him to be mature and do the right thing, he eventually went with me but only saw the counselor for about 5 minutes. He sees the probation officer Wednesday and has a court ordered psych eval on 10/2. Court date is 10/4.
I hope we have "peaked" and things will get better. What is your opinion? What other incentives do you think may help? (No phone or internet as this has been the ongoing issue). He actually seems to be OK with the school (did attend K-8th grade in this district so he knows quite a few of the kids). Dad is out of town for the w/e and we did go out to dinner yesterday and then out for ice cream. I am waiting for him to do his chores sometime this weekend (hopefully will) and he is currently at work. I need to keep him busy. Any ideas would be great. Thanks, and I'll keep you informed.
Oh, by the way, husband sees dollar signs and is ready to let M______ run wild rather than con't our struggle with the juve. system due to the outrageous financial burden. I however, am determined to con't so M______ knows we mean what we say. I have told husband I would get a second job, etc. but I was determined to cont the fight as I feel we haven't "lost" M______ yet.
Re: I hope we have "peaked" and things will get better. What is your opinion? What other incentives do you think may help?
Results from the psych eval should provide some valuable info that will dictate a course of action.
Keep in mind that consequences need to be immediate -- but short-term (no more than 7 days, and 3 days works best). You want your son to be able to see light at the end of the tunnel.
My Out-of-Control Teen