My son was ashamed of me and said: ‘I don’t want people to think we came together,’ so I repaid him in the same manner

Adolescence is a time of huge changes, marked by emotional ups and downs, stubbornness, and a hunger for freedom. Both teens and parents face unique challenges during these years. As children transition from being young kids to young adults, there are moments of growth, moments of self-discovery, and, inevitably, some conflicts. But amid all this noise and uncertainty, parents have a unique chance to teach tolerance, understanding, and encouragement.

Teens often seek their own space and independence, which can sadly lead to clashes with their parents.

Most parents try hard to find a balance between allowing freedom and maintaining authority.

Parents need to know when to take a step back and when to guide their children, all while keeping the lines of communication open.

One mother shared her story, revealing how her son felt embarrassed by her and her husband. He didn’t want to be seen with them and would ask to be dropped off away from his destination so his friends wouldn’t see him being driven by his parents.

In an effort to teach him a lesson, she decided to give him a taste of his own medicine.

Read on for her story:

My 14-year-old son started feeling embarrassed by my husband and me about two years ago. We hoped it would pass, but it’s only gotten worse. We’re just regular people, but you would think we’re the oddest folks around from the way he treats us.

He says things like, “Don’t come to my games,” “don’t drop me off right in front,” and “I’ll walk ahead at the mall, so people don’t think we’re together.” It just goes on and on. He’s nice when we buy him something or do what he wants, but lately, he’s been treating us pretty badly.

A few days ago, I drove 40 minutes to pick him up from a school event, and he made me wait a block away. When he saw me, there were other kids around. He blushed, waited for the kids to pass by, got in the car, slid down, and just said, “Drive.” I’ve shared how this behavior makes us feel, but he doesn’t seem to care. Well, I had enough.

That very night, he needed a new t-shirt for an event. On our way to the store, I told him to “duck!” and pushed his head down. I then told him that I thought a college friend, someone I didn’t want to see us together, was driving around. When he asked why, I told him I was embarrassed. Once at the store, I rushed to the entrance, leaving him to catch up to me.

When he finally reached me, I asked him to stay a few feet behind, just in case I ran into someone I knew. He caught on quickly. I then asked how it felt to be treated like an embarrassment, and he admitted, “Not good.”

The next morning, we went to the transit office to get a bus pass for him because I told him I didn’t want to be seen with him in the car anymore. He’d have to take the bus from now on. I openly expressed how much I regretted having to go into the office with him, more worried about how the clerk might perceive me than about his feelings. I asked him to stand by the door and not say a word. I think he’s starting to get it, but I’m still unsure.

When I told my sister about my approach, she was angry. She believes I should recognize this as a phase he’ll outgrow. But I feel like I’ve given him almost two years, and this phase is now a deeply ingrained behavior that I’m tired of dealing with. What do you think?


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