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Student of the Month?!?

frustrated-mom's picture

Yes, the brat who failed 9th grade while living with DH and me last school year is now student of the freaking month at her new high school. DH had to rub it in my face this evening that his brat is continuing to do so well and I know he still blames me for everything going wrong last year.

This is bs. She’s taking half of her classes over again after she failed them. The other half she’s taking online. It’s a school with less than 200 kids in the middle of nowhere, so it’s not like there’s a lot of other students. They must have absolutely no criteria on character since she has none.

I’m just pissed off that we let this little bitch manipulate us so badly. She’s got to be so smug about this. All last year, she failed to turn in homework and deliberately flunked tests just to be as defiant as possible.

In our home, we had rules, structure and discipline which she rebelled against and successful got to go live where she wanted where she gets to do anything she wants.

Now she’s living with her aunt and uncle in another state where she’s treated like she’s 25 rather than 15. She’s staying in their basement, which has a separate entrance with her 18 year old half-brother. No curfew. No limits on her cell phone or internet, no rules at all. Her aunt and uncle do absolutely no parenting.

I’ve been telling DH that this is recipe for disaster and have been waiting for the I-told-you-so moment. But her grades are fine, so DH thinks there’s no issues with it. I know he’s thinking why we didn’t do this and how wrong I was for telling him he actually needed to be a parent.

In the write-up on the school’s website about it, it says she “overcame adversity” - apparently, living with your dad and evil SM where she was expected to obey rules is “adversity” now.

She’s still a disrespectful brat who cusses out her dad and wants him and me to go to hell, but apparently that’s fine for student of the month at her high school.


Rags's picture

Possibly nothing more than a token Scooby Snack to show her the advantages of positive recognition.

I had a similar experience when I was in HS. I flunked 10th grade. I skipped a ton of classes, did not work, etc... So I got invited to not return to the boarding school I was attending.

So, mom and dad sent me to military school. The same one my dad had attended for HS.

For my 2nd sophomore year through graduation I had the highest grades in every class, was a star athelete, sudent government leader, etc, etc, etc..... I got the message from my performance my first sophomore year and did not repeat that mistake.

About halfway through spring semester of my Jr. year a kid that had been a New Cadet with me who was decent but not great student/performer was given a major Department of the Army life saving award at an award ceremony. I had earned that award.

A fellow student who was a diabetic had gone in to severe hypoglycemia (insulin reaction) and was having seisures on the floor of his room in the barracks. A kid came running in to a room I was visiting yelling for me to come. When I entered the diabetics room I immediately held his head and grabbed a wooden ruler off of his desk to put in his mouth to protect his teeth and keep his tongue in place. The kid who got me told me that the guy ultimately got the award had gone to get a "Coke" and should be back any minute. He came back with a Diet Coke. I sent him back for a regular Coke. He did ultimately return with the right thing and I was able to get enough of the Coke in to the convulsing kid to raise his blood glucose levels and pull him out of hypoglycemia.

I also sent some Cadets to call 911 and to send for the School Nurse while I was waiting for the Coke.

The President of the school had sent for me to join him in his office a few days before the ceremony to tell me that MY award was going to the other guy.
He explained that several members of the military science department and the school nurse had approached the President and suggested that this would likely build the guys confidence and be a huge deal for him. So the award went to the guy who had fetched a Diet Coke. I told the President that I was fine with that.

I am and was a diabetic which is why I knew how to address the situation. The guy who got the award had observed myself and the other diabetic kid drinking diet coke so that is what he thought was needed. He acted, he just did not act effectively.

I will say that I had some bitterness about it at the time but did understand the motivations. Unfortunately the guy who got the award degraded to a poor performing schlump rather than stepping up as the school leadership had hoped.

Your SD may very well be a great performer now having learned from her first 9th grade year. I sure got the message after my first sophomore year and ultimately graduated HS with high honors.

If it is a Scooby Snack thing I hope she takes the right lessons from the Sudent of the Month award and steps up. The example I have did not turn out so well.

hismineandours's picture

Yes I definitely think this could be a "freebie" for her to make her feel good. Who knows what horrible stories of adversity she has told them? I'm sure she made them good.

Also the grades are likely temporary. Just bide your time and your dh will see. When my ss moved in with mil back in August-he was just the greatest kid ever. They couldnt ever imagine him doing anything wrong. His grades first grading period were a's, b's, c's. It is now 7 months later, they asked him to leave, he's failing sevreal classes, etc. That lack of parenting eventually catches up with you and kids eventually show their true colors.

frustrated-mom's picture

I keep waiting for her to mess up, but unfortunately's she's one of those kids that's smart enough to do well in school without any work and is completely antisocial. She doesn't have any friends to get her into trouble and lives in a rural area where there's nothing to do except ride horses.

I'd be absolutely giddy if she would be failing and I could say - look at what a brat she is.

But, no, she makes DH and I look like bad parents since she failed 9th grade. Back then, all of her relatives couldn't understand why we were having all the problems with her since she's so perfect.

No matter what we did, she chose to fail 9th grade and was determined to do it to punish her dad and make us look bad.

What she has always wanted is to go live with her older half-sister who's in veterinary school. She's told her dad next year she wants to take all online classes and try to graduate early, so I think that's her plan and she needs to have good grades to do it. So, she's not going to intentionally fail again unless he says she can't do it.

Jsmom's picture

I was student of the month and trust me it was not academic based. I was involved in student govt and other organizations. If it was based on academics, there was no way it would go to me...

I would look at it as she is trying to do better and these are baby steps. But, I also would not be overly excited about this. Acknowledge it and move on. I am sure she will do something in the future to give you some justification for your feelings. These kids always seem to.

Also, the adversity comment, would piss me off to!! Really, adversity was a few rules that you couldn't handle. I am sure the story she told was amazing, unfortunately, all fiction...

frustrated-mom's picture

From the crap that teachers wrote on her report card, it seems like they’re treating last year as if she was ill with cancer or something because her grandma died and she had to move to live with us. I have no idea what she’s told her teachers about me. She loves promoting her sob story of how her mother abandoned her and how she was abused and put in foster care.

SD15 only failed 9th grade out of spite and to punish her dad. She’s not stupid and could have been an honor roll student here if she would have just sucked it up and went along with it.Instead, she wanted to rebel about being made to come live with us and failed

Highlights of last year include:
- Throwing away her homework instead of turning it in after her dad spent hours prodding her to do it.
- Writing down the wrong homework assignment, doing the wrong assignment to make her dad think she’s doing her homework and then failing to turn it in.
- Doodling on tests instead of answer any questions
- Turning in completely blank tests and quizzes.
- Spending most of her time in class reading non-school books and teachers being fine with it since they don’t want to deal with her.

This year she took the PSAT without preparing for it and scored high enough that if she actually studies next year, she be a National Merit Scholar. That’s the level of grades she’s capable of.

My guess is her teachers don’t have clue and believe all the garbage about how great she’s doing. And she’s only doing well at school so she doesn’t have to come back her and because her older half-sister is telling her she has to.

Rags's picture

Regardless of the outcome the problem with feel good grade increases is that it cheapens the effort of kids who actually do the work to earn good grades.

For the kids who actually earn a HS diploma the illiterate kids who are allowed to graduate and skate through HS set the opinion or employers and society for all of the kids of that age or generation.

I say let the onew who earn it pass and gradaute the ones who don't fail and go dig ditches or shovel out animal stalls.

IMHO of course.

frustrated-mom's picture

I agree totally agree, but in SD's case, she puts forth no effort and gets by on her sob story and her test scores. I hate that SD can take one test and be labeled smart while she put no effort into anything last year.

She does the work she's expected to do and gets rewarded. It's absolutely nothing for her to get As.

My DS isn't the smartest kid, but I've made sure he's a hard worker. I've tried to teach him that it's effort that pays off not brains. But sadly, the way schools are, a lot of time that isn't true.

SD15 has been told her whole life how smart she is and feels that she's special and doesn't need to do any work at school. She has a sob story with her BM abandoning her that will sound great on college admissions essays that will probably help her far more than effort or hard work.

She knows how to manipulate people to make them think she's something she's not. If she does end up a National Merit Scholar, I'm going to go insane. It's unfair for the kids who actually put forth effort at school, have values and character and don't bend the rules to suit themselves.

Anon2009's picture

When she was living with you, was Dad getting her any counseling whatsoever?

You say you've washed your hands of this situation and disengaged, but have you really? I think a way you could start to do this is by asking DH not to mention her name to or in front of you. Each time he does, walk out of the room.

I don't think sexual abuse should be used as an excuse for bad behavior. I believe SD should have consequences just like everyone else. However, the truth is, it is very, very severe, and it is something that most people who are victims of it will need help coping with for the rest of their lives. That's where a good counselor comes in, and teaches their clients good, healthy ways of coping with it.

I think you need to disengage, and find a way to stop DH's mentioning her in front of you or to you. She is happy living with her relatives and she doesn't live in your home anymore. Neither of you will have to see each other for a long time.

frustrated-mom's picture

Yes, she was in therapy but it was not helpful. All we had was a large bill, horrible advice and her behavior kept getting worse.

I’ve tried to get DH not to talk about her in front of me, but he gets upset since it’s his absolute focus. He’s borderline obsessed with trying to salvage his relationship with her and not missing her growing up. We’ve had 3 major blow-up arguments in the past month about why I don’t want to help him with SD15.

I do not want to disengage since that would result in DH doing whatever he wanted and not being able to say anything. I’m not going to do that. Disengaging means giving up all control over the situation. What I need is for DH to disengage and just wash his hands of this mess.

The abuse happened nearly 10 years ago. It shouldn’t be an issue anymore and I wish I had never mentioned it on here. The bigger issue for her was being forced to move after her grandma died and retaliated against us. She didn’t have any behavior problems before she came to live with us and was an honor roll student. She’s just a brat who’s used to getting her way and being coddled by her grandma and half-siblings.