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Ktgrok

And he failed, again. We're done.

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DS 18 was dropped from his Dual Enrollment math class for too many absences and is failing his humanities class. I'm done. I'll make up a transcripts nd we're done. He should not go back to school until and unless he wants to. 

On the other hand, his volunteer job is going really well. They love him there, say he is a self starter who never has to be asked twice to do anything. That he's learned so much more than other volunteers, has more responsibility, etc. He went to my mom's for a few days and she says the same thing - he's so helpful and never has to be asked to help. So he's not an awful person. 

But darn it, I'm sad. I wanted to celebrate a graduation, not this. This is not a celebratory thing. This is a "well, guess school isn't your thing now" thing. It's a "well, get a job" thing. 

 

My aunt was visiting this week end form Wisconsin and encouraged him to apply to be a counselor at some camp up there this summer, that her son is going to be working at. He's going to apply there. In the meantime He has his volunteer job that is about 15 hours a week, and I'm coming up with a list of things for him to help out with around the house. I told him, "I want to be proud of you, and obviously that's not going to be about school. So give me stuff to be proud of, and for you to be proud of yourself for."

 

But yeah, want to curl up in a ball and cry. 

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I’d try to get focus off of stuff he’s completed. Focus on his good qualities. And maybe see if you can find out something that interests him (hopefully the camp thing does and isn’t just something he feels obligated to try). 

Sorry things have not gone as you’d like. I’m sure he’s upset, too. Unless of course he never wanted to be at school then who knows. 

Hope things look up. 

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Oh, I love how you encouraged him to find another area to  be proud of himself (and make you proud).  Great step to empower him and let him know it's not about your setting the standards.  It is so great that his volunteer program is going well. 

I recently read the book The Self-Driven Child and it was excellent for learning to celebrate what is going well for our children and be encouraged by those areas.

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14 minutes ago, Ktgrok said:

DS 18 was dropped from his Dual Enrollment math class for too many absences and is failing his humanities class. I'm done. I'll make up a transcripts nd we're done. He should not go back to school until and unless he wants to. 

On the other hand, his volunteer job is going really well. They love him there, say he is a self starter who never has to be asked twice to do anything. That he's learned so much more than other volunteers, has more responsibility, etc. He went to my mom's for a few days and she says the same thing - he's so helpful and never has to be asked to help. So he's not an awful person. 

But darn it, I'm sad. I wanted to celebrate a graduation, not this. This is not a celebratory thing. This is a "well, guess school isn't your thing now" thing. It's a "well, get a job" thing. 

 

My aunt was visiting this week end form Wisconsin and encouraged him to apply to be a counselor at some camp up there this summer, that her son is going to be working at. He's going to apply there. In the meantime He has his volunteer job that is about 15 hours a week, and I'm coming up with a list of things for him to help out with around the house. I told him, "I want to be proud of you, and obviously that's not going to be about school. So give me stuff to be proud of, and for you to be proud of yourself for."

 

But yeah, want to curl up in a ball and cry. 

Mama, I know you are sad and honestly I really do completely understand. 

But...”give me stuff to be proud of”.....oof, that kinda hit me like a ton of bricks.   I imagine it hit him similarly.  

 

At the same time, I don’t have much advice   I totally understand being disappointed and I don’t know that pretending you aren’t is beneficial either.  

 

So hard.   If I could, I would post a hugs emoji   

 

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I've heard and read many times over that our dc behave and work better for others than for us. It's still a sign of your good parenting, though. 

Hugs for his schooling being over (for now). I would only worry if he didn't try hard at anything and work well for anyone. Not the case here! He will own the rest of what's important in time. A dear friend who's given me very sage advice over the years once told me of her brother who never tried at school, and wanted nothing to do any form of college after he limped through high school. In his late 20's he decided to go to college to become an engineer and he did it! He's very successful and is a decent human  being. 

Those good reports from others are golden. Don't let the school stuff overshadow that. You've done a good job. Promise. 

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He's happy, helpful and productive in other areas ? Heck, mama, I'm gonna throw you a party. Trust me, this is not failure..not for you, not for him..though I 100% understand it feels that way. Hope the camp counsellor thing works out - that sounds like it could be a good experience. 

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4 minutes ago, StellaM said:

He's happy, helpful and productive in other areas ? Heck, mama, I'm gonna throw you a party. Trust me, this is not failure..not for you, not for him..though I 100% understand it feels that way. Hope the camp counsellor thing works out - that sounds like it could be a good experience. 

Well he is for my mom or at the volunteer job, lol. At home his room literally stinks, he has laundry and food stinking up the place, he has to be begged/threatened/cajoled to do his chores and then half asses them, etc. 

 

But that's still way better than a few years ago. 

 

I just keep telling myself that school is just one thing. And that boys should graduate at age 13, lol.

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1 minute ago, Ktgrok said:

Well he is for my mom or at the volunteer job, lol. At home his room literally stinks, he has laundry and food stinking up the place, he has to be begged/threatened/cajoled to do his chores and then half asses them, etc. 

 

But that's still way better than a few years ago. 

 

I just keep telling myself that school is just one thing. And that boys should graduate at age 13, lol.

 

I'll throw you a survival party then. Honestly, calling 'done' sounds like a good thing to me. I mean, sometimes you just have to draw that line. I don't see that as failure either. I see that as wise. 

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I'm sorry, Katie.

He wants to do his thing. He does what he's motivated to do. If you own it, he won't own it... I know I said this on another thread, but I think a lot of kids, if it's mom's thing, won't do it because they don't want to own her thing. That's really emotionally draining, because if you own it and she owns it then you fight about how to do it. They won't own it until you let go.

 

In the meantime, we put a Glade air freshener in my stepson's room and it smells very flowery now.

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I'm sorry. 

It is so disappointing when they have their own minds and wills:)  It does really hurt when you are the Momma and wanting the best for them.

I would rather raise a good person than a great student.  Your son sounds like  a good person.  I think you both should be proud.

I am also a fan of the Glade  air freshener. A large kitchen garbage can with a lid is nice. 

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I'm so sorry you"re disappointed. We want them to shine but if they don't want to you can't will it. As you said, he's not a horrible person. In the end that is far more important.   Hugs 

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I'm sorry school has ended this way, at least for now. But it sounds like he's doing well in so many ways. Any chance he could get a job at the volunteer place? Or in some associated field? 

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53 minutes ago, Innisfree said:

I'm sorry school has ended this way, at least for now. But it sounds like he's doing well in so many ways. Any chance he could get a job at the volunteer place? Or in some associated field? 

They only have one paid staff member, and I don't think they have the budget for more. It's an avian rehab and rescue place, so unless he becomes a falconer and manages to get a job doing nuisance abatement there isn't much in the paying world. He doesn't want to be a vet tech or anything. 

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1 hour ago, Jean in Newcastle said:

He's an Aspie right?  He's focused right on the stuff that he needs to be focusing on right now.  He's going great.  You have a lot to be proud of.  

If he is, perhaps reading the book The Loving Push. It is part of what helped me look to a charter school this year (B&M). 

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20 minutes ago, Ktgrok said:

They only have one paid staff member, and I don't think they have the budget for more. It's an avian rehab and rescue place, so unless he becomes a falconer and manages to get a job doing nuisance abatement there isn't much in the paying world. He doesn't want to be a vet tech or anything. 

:-( 

That's a shame.  

 

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Aw, hugs to you.  I know it's so hard.  But, it is great that he has areas of his life where he is succeeding so well!  My son has always done better for other people than for me.  :-)  Your guy may just need more time to really find what he wants to do / where he fits in.  Still, hard to watch it, I know!  

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This might not appeal to him in the least, but the connection to falcons made me remember that years ago my cousin's husband, who was in wildlife management, supervised interns in similar positions every summer. They basically camped out and kept an eye on young peregrine falcons, protecting them as they grew up in the wild. Typically college students are hired, but his experience might make him a good candidate, and it might give him ideas on how he could use his volunteer interest in other ways. Unfortunately the deadline for this year is past, but maybe something for the future?

https://wfscjobs.tamu.edu/jobs/ace-epic-nps-va-shenandoah-peregrine-falcon-restoration-and-wildlife-management-internship-americorps-virginia/

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1 hour ago, LifeLovePassion said:

If he is, perhaps reading the book The Loving Push. It is part of what helped me look to a charter school this year (B&M). 

Thank you! I just ordered it. 

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Aw, Katie, I'm sorry you're feeling so down, although I think I can relate to some extent.

When we "expelled" my son from our homeschool and opted to enroll him in all online classes, I really went through a kind of mourning. I alternated between feeling furious with him and being oppressed by sadness about the education he wouldn't be getting and the experiences we wouldn't be having together -- the creative projects he would complete, the chummy literary and intellectual discussions we'd have . . . 

And, honestly, I can still work up a certain amount of wistfulness even several years later.

But we have all lived through it and moved on with life. 

I won't pretend it's been anything like smooth sailing; I've posted enough frantic "help me!" pleas here that it would be ridiculous to try. I have at least one bad patch every semester wondering whether my son will pass his current classes or get himself registered for the next ones or . . . something. Sometimes he does -- mostly he does, at the very last second -- but he blows it just often enough to justify my uncertainty.

I'm super hesitant to say this out loud, because I don't want to jinx anything, but I will say that things do seem to be slowly getting better. It took far too long, but he did finally finish his A.A., transfer to UCF and get himself admitted to both the major and minor of his choice. He's talented and creative and very focused and driven when it comes to things he values. School, for the sake of school, doesn't happen to be one of those things, but with nudging and hand-holding, he's gotten this far. I'm relieved and proud and not taking for granted that he'll manage to continue.

I actually just told my husband a couple of days ago that I'm about ready to be done, though. I'm happy to continue providing a reasonable amount of support, helping with paperwork and reminding him of deadlines and offering advice, but I think I have finally used up my store of energy for anything more extraordinary. Now that he's got the A.A. and has proven that he can focus and work when he needs to do so, I am trying to make peace with the concept that it might be time to just . . . stop if he hits another bad patch.

It's just exhausting holding my breath and/or being irritable with him all the time.

So, no wisdom or advice, beyond maybe trying to take a step back and appreciate what is great about your kid. But you definitely have company.

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I will tell you a story that I've told others, including myself, who love a person who doesn't have all their crap together at 18 or 20 or...

My brother had the worst time in school. He hated it. He had some challenges that made it more difficult for him, but overall, he genuinely didn't want to be in school and got little value from it. He really only bothered showing up because of sports, and back then they didn't have a minimum average you had to maintain to play. He barely graduated. He had exactly the lowest average you could have and still walk away with a diploma. At graduation, our father actually yelled out "grab it quick before they change their minds!"  Obviously, our father didn't have a lot of hope for his future. But our mom... she believed in the good, kind and determined person that he was. 

He worked for a time after high school. He was working as a drywall finisher when he met a few fellows who were deep sea divers on oil rigs. Having grown up in Florida, we were both well versed in diving, but my brother had a real talent for it. He had never before thought that it could be something that one would do for a living. These guys told him about where they had gone to school and what they had to do to become the divers that they were. My brother decided that he was going to do this as well. So he applied to a dive School in Houston. It was pretty rigorous and he was sometimes daunted  at the courses, but he was determined to finish. At that graduation my parents weren't able to attend but I was, and in a move that would surprise everyone, including my brother himself, he graduated from Dive school with the top marks in his class, having got no less than 90% on any assignment or test.  

He was a very successful diver for about 6 years. Then unfortunately he had a very severe accident. During the time he was recovering, he was working inside the office and the shop of the company for whom he worked. Over time, he became more familiar with those types of operations of the business. Eventually, he was asked if he would like to do some supervisory work. That rolled itself into doing office work. Over the next several years, the company invested in him and even put him through an MBA program. And now, my brother, this man who people once thought would never amount to anything much at all, writes multi-million dollar contracts for dive services on oil rigs all over the world. 

So, the point of my story is ... you just never know how someone might surprise you. 

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A fail for lack of attendance is really voting with the feet.  Not the right gig for this stage in life....

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I finally logged back in and reset my password just so I could give you some hugs & sympathy.  So here they are ((((hugs))))

I am so sorry things are going this way right now.  We are going through something similar with dd #2.  We have gone from plan A to plan B, to plan C and so on each semester for 4 semesters now, re-adjusting our expectations each time.  Sometimes I feel like I am the one who failed and I struggle with feeling like she is narrowing her opportunities by not hanging in there. 

I tell myself that at this point she has to want it more than I do, and while she may say she does, her actions say something different.  I hope you find many things about your son to be proud of.  It sounds like he is a great kid at his volunteer job and elsewhere.

Hang in there

Amber in SJ 

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10 hours ago, LifeLovePassion said:

If he is, perhaps reading the book The Loving Push. It is part of what helped me look to a charter school this year (B&M). 

My young teen daughter is on the autism spectrum. Thank you for the book recommendation.  I have not heard of it.  My library has it and I just requested it.

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Just a little encouragement.  My oldest (Aspie) basically refused to do any subjects he didn't deem "relevant" to what he was interested in.   I graduated him without all that is fully needed for NC graduation in terms of subjects.  He might do part of it, but it was with arguing, fighting, and nagging, and I found it just wasn't worth it.  

He felt like a failure.  I felt like a failure.  It was a rough time.

Then he started the CC in a program he was interested in.  And he got all As and all of a sudden, cared about school.  That lead to yet another specialization within that field, and that did the trick.   He is now away at school on a decent sized scholarship and motivated.  But it is not the "traditional college program" and geared more to what HE is interested in doing.  If you had asked me when he was 16 what he would do at 20, I would have said, "Probably living with us and on disability"  SERIOUSLY.  His buying into the program and knowing what he wanted made all the difference.

Does he know what he is interested in?  Has he done any career assessments?  Met with any therapists?  Career counselors?

The other thing his therapist said that encouraged me was, "He is about 3-4 years behind his peers.  He will become an "adult", but it may be at 26 rather than 22."  That has also helped shape our expectations.  

 

 

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Thank you, all. 

 

I should clarify I AM proud of his volunteering work, and tell him so regularly. He's only been there since November and has over 250 hours of volunteer time logged. 

Ironically, this and his SAT scores qualify him for the lower level of the state Bright Futures scholarship, and in fact he is only a few points away from the full scholarship. He's going to retake the SAT soon and we'll see. Between that and the state scholarship for those with certain disabilities, including ASD, he actually has a pretty much free ride to any state school. So it hurts to see him squandering that. But, he has to be the one to want it. And he doesn't want it enough right now. I THINK he has 2 years to start school for the state scholarship and similar time frame for the other. I guess I'll just hope that a year of work gets him more inclined to try school again. Or a trade program, or some certifications, or whatever. 

 

 

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9 minutes ago, DawnM said:

Just a little encouragement.  My oldest (Aspie) basically refused to do any subjects he didn't deem "relevant" to what he was interested in.   I graduated him without all that is fully needed for NC graduation in terms of subjects.  He might do part of it, but it was with arguing, fighting, and nagging, and I found it just wasn't worth it.  

He felt like a failure.  I felt like a failure.  It was a rough time.

Then he started the CC in a program he was interested in.  And he got all As and all of a sudden, cared about school.  That lead to yet another specialization within that field, and that did the trick.   He is now away at school on a decent sized scholarship and motivated.  But it is not the "traditional college program" and geared more to what HE is interested in doing.  If you had asked me when he was 16 what he would do at 20, I would have said, "Probably living with us and on disability"  SERIOUSLY.  His buying into the program and knowing what he wanted made all the difference.

Does he know what he is interested in?  Has he done any career assessments?  Met with any therapists?  Career counselors?

The other thing his therapist said that encouraged me was, "He is about 3-4 years behind his peers.  He will become an "adult", but it may be at 26 rather than 22."  That has also helped shape our expectations.  

 

 

Thank you. Yes, I keep reminding myself he is maturity wise more like 15-16. However, I'd expect a kid that age to be in school. 

Honestly, I should have found a way to graduate him two years ago. He hasn't got much more credit wise since then, just more frustration on both our parts. He did get A's in his early classes, but then it went downhill. I do think if he bought in to the purpose he'd do well. 

I tried to get him to go see a career counselor at the school, or academic advisor and got no where. Anyone know of a good career quiz to do online at home? He does need to explore that more. For instance, he thought he was going to do something in technology, it was ALL he was interested in at first. But then he didn't love his tech classes and DID love his Art History classes of all things!!! Hates humanities...that's the one he just failed for the second time. Is a great writer but hates to write. And enjoys falconry, lol. 

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