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Being opportunistic

Wicked stepmo.'s picture

Yesterday progress reports came out. I was fully aware OSD is now failing adding to her compounding issues that both parents find ways to ignore and /or justify as "Normal" teenage behavior. 

Last year when OSDs issues began to become problematic I convinced SO to take her to counseling. She went 3x before moving in with BM and they both decided I was the problem.

Fast forward to now and BM cannot control OSD and BMs BF is in the verge of kicking her out because he feels the same way I do. BM much like SO will admit OSDs behavior is problematic but neither will do anything about it or to address it.

Today SO called OSD to address her about her grades. She did her usual routine of not accepting any responsibility and today's excuse was " I am depressed". I can tell you this is not true, that is one of her many convenient excuses she uses to avoid accountability. The truth is she is up on her phone and social media until 4-5am and sleeps all day because neither of her parents comprehend they have the ability to take her phone away. 

But I took this situation and ran with it contacting the school counselor with my " concerns" over her statements. OSD being true to from having backed herself in a corner will play this up with the counselor in hopes of not being held accountable for her behavior and poor grades.

Now that the school is involved the the counselor will be meeting with OSD. She has already contacted BM that OSD needs counseling based on reports from her teachers and her attitude and behavior.  When the counselor meets with OSD she will either see OSD is having serious behavioral issues. Or she will get some sort of well prepared sob story of OSD about why she is sooo depressed. Either way the school is obligated to push both parents to take OSD for counseling and will follow up to make sure they made an appointment. 

All 3 of them need counseling. BM and SO to learn how to parent and OSD because she is spiraling out of control Nothing will change until both her parents start parenting her and stop making excuses or behaving like they are helpless.


SeeYouNever's picture

So many behavior and mood issues in kids are due to lack of parenting. Especially with divorced parents the both assume the other caused the problem and should fix it. Counseling is helpful but I've seen plenty of parents outsource the work of actually parenting to a school, therapist or to medication. Those things are helpful only if there are parents doing actual parenting. 

You're totally right that the problem likely comes from too much freedom on her phone and lack of sleep.

Wicked stepmo.'s picture

Her problems are very serious. The counselor had seen it within 3 sessions. She has a personality DO. Those don't go away, but can be managed with counseling and parents making and enforcing strong boundaries. She does not and will not have self-control. So it's up to the adults in her life to to provide the right structure to make up for her own lack of self-control. Also the reality is that if not now down the road depression is inevitable because as her life continues to spiral out of control she will fall into a state of depression.

NoWireCoatHangarsEVER's picture

She might be prison bound.  Either way they are setting her for a lifetime of interpersonal relationship issues.  She'll never ever be able to form any kind of real attachment or bond with another human being.  She won't be able to be successful in a career.  No Self control also can lead to bad health problems like addiction and obesity.  She has no chance at a happy successful life if they don't step in and step up.

justmakingthebest's picture

One thing that strikes me is how many parents today see a cell phone as a necessity for their child- not a privilege. Many (if not most of us) didn't have a cell phone until we were adults. I was living on my own in an apartment when I got my first cell phone with 400 whole minutes a month usage (Yay for free nights and weekends, right??). I guess that I remind myself that my parents sent me out into the world- to work, to drive, to spend the night with friends, on dates with boys- all without a cell phone. Kids don't NEED a cell phone. And if it is truly for calling purposes, give them a government approved cell phone with no smart phone, no touch screen, no camera- just a cell phone that calls and receives calls. 

halo1998's picture

We always told the kids..cell phone is a privilege..not a right.  SD got her taken away and whined how will I call you if I need to when I'm at schoool......GO TO THE OFFICE..THEY WILL LET YOU USE THE PHONE.

Sure enough..she needed to call her Dad...went to the office and SHOCK..they let her call her Dad.  Imagine that...

SD even now tells Beaver to take GWR's phone away....because HE DOESN'T REALLY NEED ONE....LOL.

When our kids were young and they NEEDED a phone..they got a flip phone....  I'm evil

Hastings's picture

Lack of good parenting, too much screen time (which can be a legit addiction). Yeah. That doesn't lead anywhere good.

I fear some of what you describe could be where my SS10 is headed. At the moment, DH is taking steps on some things but I don't feel like it's strong or consistent enough. SS is definitely not being taught accountability. DH and BM will talk a good game, but once SS gets in trouble or something doesn't go his way, they immediately get incensed and blame others. No way that kid is learning responsibility.

Your situation with OSD sounds like it could be a glimpse into our future.

so frustrating to watch. Accountability and responsibility are actually wonderful gifts we can give our kids. It's a shame parents can't see the harm they could be doing to their children.

luwh033's picture

Going through similar, sd's teacher contacted us saying she is disruptive, doesn't turn in assignments and constantly disappears on virtual school. She's failing every subject but her excuse was she's depressed because she can't see her friends or go to school with covid and that she doesn't like her teacher. Complete BS covid is hard on everyone and not liking your teacher is not an excuse to not do your work or be disruptive to the class. Anyways they fell for it. Her mom is more on her about school and trying to get it together but her dad just makes excuses for her treats her like a baby and doesn't realize she may fail and not move on to the next grade and then she'll really have a problem. Crazy.