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Lord Almighty can anyone answer this as I can’t???

Tammajean451's picture

Do child therapist no longer suggest consequences/discipline??!?!

Ok long story sorta short....SS14 has been a little bastard all year and refuses to do his school work or go to school. He is FAILING every course. He refuses to work with a Tutor or any of his teachers to get him back on Track. The school has been Awesome in trying to motivate him but with no luck. He has ADHD(Supposedly) and was offered a ADHD Coach but refused to work with them. Bottom line( my opinion) is SS14 is a spoiled brat who just wants to do fun things and feels school is not fun. Both parents have asked SS14 what they can do to help him and his response is "he needs motivation". My opinion is he's hinting around he wants to be paid money to do his school work. 

Now the "Professional" therapist knows ALL this and one "would think" she would tell the parents SS14 needs Consequences for refusing the do school work and refusing help. Am I wrong??? Well nope all she does is increase his ADHD medication and listens to BM complain about her poor Emotionally challenged baby and none of this is SS14 fault because SS14 has a "mental condition". Oh and yes we have gone to different therapists and they basically are all the same.

So my question is WTF?? 

numb87's picture


I have a SD that has adhd and we just let her own her shit, so to speak. You didn't place anywhere in the school fair - should have worked harder. We support her when she is trying but if she's not and she comes home and complains about not winning or receiving a gold star when she did absolutely nothing and tries to blame us for not doing it for her - tough that's life - you get out what you put in. ADHD presents differently in most girls to how it does in boys. I don't think ADHD makes kids lazy - their brains are just wired differently and it makes them appear to be lazy - but that doesn't mean there aren't kids with ADHD that are lazy. Everyone's personality is different. Money is a big driver for my SD but we don't pay her for school work. We reward her for doing well and it's always a nice surprise - never expected- and it's not everytime she manages to complete something. It's for outstanding effort, achievement or improvement. Not for doing the bare minimum. I would also suggest a part time weekend job. Just a few hours. I was a lazy teen and having a part time job that was monotonous gave me a little more drive in my studies and also made me appreciate a dollar earned. 

Loxy's picture

My SD16 also has ADD and refuses to take medication as she believes it makes her boring and her social life is the most important thing to her. After many years of trying to get her help (she saw a psychiatrist for a while - hence the ADD diagnosis) we have also given up and let her own her own shit. She can't concentrate, well that's on her because she prioritises her social life over taking medication to help. She puts in no effort at school, well her bad grades are on her too. We would reward her (ie money, shopping trip etc) if she ever got a good report card but it's never happened. 

SD16 is a live in the moment type of person, no planning, no thought to consequences of her actions so she will have to learn everything the hard way in life and that's on her. 

notsofast's picture

therapist or psychiatrist?  therapists don't usually up meds.  Psychiatrists prescribe meds and don't really focus on behavior.  That could be the issue.

MaryBethC's picture

A good child therapist is like hitting the lottery it seems. OSS has been in therapy for YEARS  and their only solutions were to change his medication or dosages. The one he sees now doesn't even do anything!! Just hears BM complain while DH and OSS sit there.

LittleCloud9's picture

Do you need the therapist approval to make rules for your own family? Your common sense is working just fine. My ss has ADD (is on meds too). A few years ago, due to trauma and abuse from BM he was in therapy with a counselor for over a year. When he came to live with us he was totally failing school and completely uncooperative. While we were sympathetic and supportive to what he had been through we insisted that he had to meet family standards, including doing school work, trying his best in school, and being respectful to others. When he didn't there were consequences. The kid didn't have video games or device time for a year! Once he earned them back, if he didn't maintain those privileges were lost again. He's an A and B student now, even during COVID he's been very responsible. It's a long haul, but it's better kids learn early that negative actions have negative consequences. It's a law of society and of nature. A therapist isn't really going to tell you how to fix your problems or what to do. They mostly just give you a place to explore your feelings and provide some support, maybe some coaching on positive coping strategies. At least the ones we have dealt with.

Trust your common sense Smile


Rumplestiltskin's picture

If only the bioparent will also listen to common sense and be willing to act on it. I agree that OP is right. 

LittleCloud9's picture

This is very true Rum. Also the parents usually need to ask specific questions and take the initiative. If BM just goes and says "my poor child is so difficult and it's so hard" the therapist will likely just say "poor you I'm so sorry " that's it.

If a parent goes in with a plan for implementing standards of behavior with outlined consequences, then asks for the therapists input, your more likely to get a real and helpful response. 

Also, I don't want to sound like it's all about punishment and making a kid miserable. Helping kids and providing discipline is really about providing structure and consistent guidance so they know what is expected every time. It feels like too many parents associate the word discipline with punishment or something mean but that's not true. 

Winterglow's picture

Stop letting him call the shots. He doesn't get to refuse a tutor. He doesn't get to not do his school work. He doesn't have the maturity to understand that not working at school will lead him nowhere other than to living under a bridge ... 

How to "motivate" him? Start taking away all of his "toys", whether they be electronic or otherwise. Remove all creature comforts from his room (including the door and most of his clothes - preferably the designer ones if he has any). And don't let him refuse to come for visitation. If he wants any of his belongings back, he has to work for them. And no sleeping late in the mornings - go about your normal daily life as cheerfully and as noisily as you can and turf him out of bed at the time you decide on, not him.

What does he want to be (if he ever grows up)? Is there a career that interests him? You may have leverage there if he has.

simifan's picture

The world in general and mental health in specific has swung so far left that personal responsibility is no longer a thing. No, other then "natural consequences" they don't recommend punishments or consequences (these usually need to be approved by a higher up or in some cases a BIC - Behavior Intervention Commitee). They recommend incentives and rewards. Sometimes these work great - sometimes not so much. 

WwCorgi7's picture

Completely agree. I feel like a lot (not all) of people use mental health issues as a way to garner sympathy and bypass personal responsibility. It is easier to blame a mental health diagnosis than it is to admit to crappy parenting and poor choices. I also think children have been put on this pedestal and given excessive power over everything for some reason the world as a whole thinks this is okay.

When my husband was going through depression after SD left, he was acting like a jerk and eating like garbage, putting on tons of weight. In his mind depression gave him the hall pass to act like this. Thankfully, he has greatly improved and has taken responsibility for his actions and behavior during that time.

My nephews are another example. One is 14 years old and the other is 5 years old. Same dad, different moms. They are absolutely, horribly behaved. The 14 year old was actually diagnosed ADHD around 5 years old and was in  special education classes due to his behavior. The 14 year old is way better than he used to be and his parents say he has "grown out" of his ADHD. Is that a thing? When he was younger and acted up, broke things, or was disrespectful they would start with "oh he has ADHD". As if that made his behavior okay. They would clean up the mess and bury their noses back into their phones. My younger nephew is a spitting image of the 14 year old behavior wise. He is so disrespectful and awful and my SIL blames it on him being a free spirit. She doesn't discipline him because she doesn't want to "hurt his feelings". She laughs off his behavior and goes back drinking instead of parenting. 


advice.only2's picture

I don't work in the mental health profession, but I wonder if like teachers they can see the lazy piss poor parenting a mile away, and realize nothing they say or do will help the situation. Sounds like the BM does nothing but make excuses for the kid, and what does your DH offer? If there is no parenting and all they are looking to do is find a quick and simple solution to their lack of parenting, then yeah meds are the only way to go for that kid.

Ispofacto's picture

Probably this.  Go to one of the sessions and ask her about consequences, and see what she says.

I had to steer Killjoy's therapist.  She was too soft to challenge Killjoy on her own.  She was also afraid if she made anyone angry, she'd be dragged in online reviews.

It worked a little.  But after a while, it was exhausting and I gave up.  Talking about how to parent is one thing, follow through was something else.


FinallySkidFree's picture

My 23y/o BS has ADHD. He was diagnosed at age 5. I refused medication. It was my belief that if I could deal with this kid bouncing off the walls 24/7, his teachers could find a way to deal with him too. He was put in a behavior modification class. He was in that class starting in 2nd grade. 8 kids - 3 teachers. Behaved? Got rewards. Misbehaved? Sat in a corner with a screen closing him off from the rest of the class while they all watched a movie - he got to read a book. That drove him mad. But it worked. By grade 5, he was slowly phased out of the behavior modification class. One period at a time. Art, then Gym. Had extra time on Math and Reading. Extra time on tests. By grade 6 he was completely mainstreamed. Put him in sports - sports kept him in line. Misbehaved? Couldn't play. Bad Grades? You were benched. It was NOT easy, but he thrived. I despise professionals that immediatelypull out the pad and medicate these kids. It's lazy. Dealing with kids that have different wiring in their brain is not fun, it is not easy, but it IS doable. This kid needs discipline. And the parents are the ones at fault. I would strip him down to the bare minimum, food and shelter and NOTHING else. Kids don't get to call the shots.

skell76's picture

At least our experience here is they don't. It's all about feeeee-lings. Not in our house, you punch a kid at school you get consequences. At her mom's they sit and talk about what she was feeling and why she did that which = little miss KNOWS what days she can get away with stuff. 

SD's therapist is all about positive and while I always praise the behaviors we want to see in our home there is such a thing as negative consequences. It happens in real life and they are settign them up for failure otherwise.  SD has an interrupting problem and at school she gets sent to the hallway. Finally getting DH to stop saying "We don't interrupt when people are talking" and DO something. A warning once and then next time you're sitting on the stairs.  But her therapist thinks that's too strict. 

Gawd I can't wait until therapy is donezo. 

LittleCloud9's picture

This is actually starting to irk me. Some teachers, lawyers, doctors, mechanics, financial planners etc.... know what they are doing, but a LOT of them SUCK.

Why do we think therapists will be different? Anyone can take a class. Maybe because we're vulnerable when we're looking for counseling we forget they need to be vetted like everyone else. I know Counsling has value but some of the professionals are useless. it's so irritating how hard it is to take care of your family, like the whole world is working you over 


Evil4's picture

Several years ago when my DD21 was about 15 or 16, DH and I went to therapy to learn how to parent our little bitch, er, I mean DD better. LOL DD was turning into quite the douche so DH and I went to therapy to learn how to parent DD. DD was to come to some sessions. Therapist asked DD what she wanted. DD actually said that she'd prefer consequences to the nagging and lectures. She HATED it when we only "talked" to her like many Disney dads do on here. The therapist told DH and I well there you have it. If DD wasn't going to admit it, the therapist was going to direct us to start doling out consequences. Talking and nagging don't work.

The therapist also told us we were doing the right thing when I said that for the sake of my marriage I no longer wanted to be in a childcentric marriage. The therapist said that it's the first thing she recommends to parents. Do not allow a childcentric situation to happen. 

Wicked stepmo.'s picture

The therapist I chose for SKs has 40 years experience with behavioral children. He spent most of the sessions with SO trying to explain to him why he needs to be more structured and implement consequences and how that is beneficial for his kids. 

Even the therapist BM picked said right out of the gate that both BM and SO needed intensive treatment services to help them with SKs behavior because she could tell right away they were part of the problem.

Rags's picture

What is most nauseating to me about this is that these idiot parents feel that they need a therapist to solve this crap.

End this teens enjoyment of life immediately.  He does as he is told when he is told or he suffers.  ADHD or not.

No digital life.... at all.... period..... ever.....  until he launches and can provide it for himself.  Period!

He does his homework on time and turns it in... or he spends his time isolated in an empty room other than a very uncomfortable wooden writing desk (you can find one at your local flea market for a few $), and he gets zero life enjoyment until he delivers on what is expected when it is expected and how it is excted.

Make his sole life experience one of abject misery until he forces his own recovery from his case of Cranio-Rectitis.

Lather.... rinse.... repeat.

As for the pseudo science minions/morons, many who are incapablel of getting a real education or a real job, give them clarity of who they work for and a firm reminder that their job is to deliver to your expectations.  If they refuse or ,as is far more likely, are incapable of delivering... fire them and find a good one through referrals from people  you respect.

IMHO of course.


Dogmom1321's picture

When SD was younger, DH thought all she needed was "motivation" and her problems would magically disappear. She would get money for brushing her friggen teeth. Fast forward to teenage years and DH wonders why the ONLY time SD talks to him, is when she wants to buy something. He has created a materialistic greedy girl. Nothing at all is "motivating" about it. She would brush her teeth a few times. Use the money to buy something. Then quit brushing, and got cavities again. Lather. Rinse. Repeat.