Violent 13yr old teen - FamilyEducation
Violent 13yr old teen
10/19/2007 at 14:13 PM

I have a 13 yr old son who, when things dont go his way or he doesnt get his way he becomes angry and violent. walking away is not an option since there is another small child in the home. he throws things, screams, yells swear words, says i hate him, i never wanted him. he has been in counseling (1st for 8 mnths) (now for a few weeks) he has seen a doctor who says he has defiant disorder (simply put he needs behavior modification). Last nite was the first time it got so out of control that he hit me, I sent him to his fathers (which is not a place for him to be). I have ran out of options what can i do.

This is a tough situation for all of you. When your son hit you, he crossed a line. He needs help Now! You can apply to have a court appointed advocate work with your son. These are trained people that will help to modify his behavior.He will be given a set of rules that he will have to follow. There are consequences if he does not. example... community service or school on the weekends. These programs work best with younger teens, they are hesitant to work with older teens, as they will be charged as an adult. The best way to start is to contact your local police station. Ask to speak with an officer regarding your teen. They can advise you on how to proceed with  an advocate. Second, this kid needs to be medically evalutated.There may be a medical problem other than the o.d.d. Please do not wait.At 13, you have a good chance  of getting this under control. Things will probably get better in the next few days, but a 13 year old who's anger is to the point of hitting you needs help now. Also remember you have another child watching everything.I'm sure you are very upsets with all of this, but take a deep breathe, and just asks  around about some of the things I have mentioned. No one has a perfect child, and some are more of a challenge, you are going to have some tough times in front of you, but I'm sure your son is worth it! I'll say a prayer for you tonight. good luck.


Thank you for replying so quickly. I have tried everything that is available to me. The court will not do anything until he is involved in a crime (which puts him the juvenile system). He was placed in a facility in 10-2006 for evaluation. He was diagnosed with Bipolar, I took him to private pscy. for med management, at which point i was told he was misdiagnosed. He is currently seeing a pschyologist which stated the same thing he was misdiagnosed. The places that are available for him to go to wont take him because he is violent. The worse part of all of this is that I love my son very much, I know he needs help, but when I have searched for help, there isnt any. It all boils down to I need to inforce the rules more, that is what I have been told over and over again. I tried to inforce the rules and this time I got hit. Next time it will be worse.I know this and so does everyone in this family that has tried to help. I sent him to his fathers, because there is no one else to take him. That family blames me for all of this. He is hurt, not me, not my other child, or my parents who were here when it all happened. I was told by a therapist that I spoke to that all the counseling in the world will not help unless he chooses to change the way he is. I can get him meds, but that will not control him. He has to want to be different. I even went so far as to call a youth director at a local church for help, thinking that if he was around kids his own age, in a church environment, that his attitude would change towards me. That was to start this Sunday. I set rules and he breaks them, thats how it works. I dont get to say no or punish him, when I do he lashes out, he does this until i just break and give in for fear he will hurt me or the other child. This time I didnt and I did get hurt. So what do you do then?


Please check again with the courts. There are  teen advocate programs that enforce certain behavior. I am not speaking about putting him in juvenile hall.The kids reffer to it as "Being on Papers".It really sounds as if this kid is controlling you.You mentioned your family has tried to help.Is there any way they can get more involved in the discipline? What does he like to do ? Where does he get money?I would explain to him he can have food, clothes and a roof over his head, until the behavior changes, Does he have problems in school? Get the principle and guidance conselor invovled. Let them be the "bad guys" in laying some rules down. Do you know of someone that can mentor this kid? Maybe someone at your church can take this kid under their wings, give him some attention, and possibly find out what is going on. How does the "guilt approach " work with him ? Can you explain how his behavior is affecting the younger child? I really am concerned about you, I'll keep thinking of ideas. maybe someone else has an opinion.


I'm so sorry to hear about the trouble you're having with your son.  I agree that he may need counseling, but I worry about putting a child that young into the juvenile system.  Sometimes they come out worse than when they went in.  

You're right when you say that consistency in discipline is important.  Children need to know that they can count on your boundaries.  Have you sat down with him when he's calm and you're calm to talk about his behavior?  Sometimes it's easier to come to an understanding when you're not in the heat of the moment.  I wish you all the best!

~Pamela Troeppl


I spent most of the day yesterday talking with court social workers, his pshyciatrist says he needs to learn to accept that "NO" is something he will always here and he needs to deal with his anger better, the psyhcologist he is seeing said all he can do is keep seeing him. Talking to the child about his bad behavior is not an option even in a calm atmosphere he eventually gets angry because he doesnt want to "lectured". The younger child seems okay for now, it was very upsetting for him to watch everything that happened that nite. I have sent my 13 year old to his fathers for the time being (until they arrest dad on an open warrant for "domestic violence" probation revokation) The behavior my son exhibits is a learned behavior from his fathers, that doesnt carry on in my home and his dad and I seperated when the child was only a year old. As of yesterday, there is no options for me, continue thearapy and let him stay with dad. The problem is not that he doesnt get to go anywhere or do anything, he wants to be allowed to do those things regardless of his behavior "NO" is not an option. Enforcing set rules is not an option. He has no respect for me or anyone that is involved in this. The only thing his father is concerned about right now is making 25,000.00 of back child support go away. he wants me to sign papers stating he is taking care of the child now so that he can go to court and get it dropped. Hes not willing to help me get the child help and to be completely honest.....No one is at this point. hold him accountable for his actions (he hits you call the police and press charges), because of his age the DA here doesnt want to take him and if this keeps up Im going to have to deal with CPS, I have another child to take care of and this behavior is going to honestly cost me both of them. I cannot control my child and he says he hates me. that is the worst feeling i have ever felt i think, when he hit me and said I dont care.


As far as I know you cannot sign any papers to have back child support dropped.You will be owed that money. I really hate to say this but your options are running out. you may need to consider reporting your sons behavior to the police. First, It may be enough to convince the courts your child needs help, and second, you need to keep records of every attempt you have made to get help for him.This is VERY important, if child protective services gets involved, you will want to have documentation from every doctor,school, or filed police report to show that you have been trying to deal with this situation.keep me informed, does anyone out there know more about the courts dealing with a 13 year old?


this may sound weird, since he is behaving violently, but have you ever had him in martial arts?  The Sensei who taught my kids Karate made a big deal about the appropriate use of physical force.  And it may be that your son needs a male role model who really can take him down in a controlled setting, but who has his respect. 


I feel for you in your desperate situation.  We have walked a similar path with our oldest son.  He was eventually correctly diagnosed with Asperger's syndrome after being misdiagnosed by many psychologists.(ADHD; ODD) The medications made him worse.  We have been taking him for neurofeedback for just over a year and the violence is now non-existent and he is off all medication,  I am thrilled and relieved to say.  

Take care.  You are a caring mother.


Thank you all for all ur help and support. You are correct I am running out of options, I am keeping very good records of every attempt to get someone to help.

I contacted a local youth minister at a church and he said he was very willing to help me if I can get my son to come to the church to meet with him, I am going to try this (this will give him a positive male role model) the man is fairly young and has teens my sons age so that will help as well.

I am looking into a residential treatment facility for my son, they will keep him for approximately 45 days. this place is for behavioral modification and they have been talking with me for several days now. at this point the concern is to get him away from dad and to this place without any physical conflict, and we are working on that now.

I have dealt with CPS over this once before just last year and gave them the proof that he was this way, they came to my home once a month and disruppted it, and i had him in counseling the whole time, the only thing they were concerned with was i abusing him. kinda made me angry, but here they are the law.

I am hoping that the things I am doing right now are the right things to do and that soon this will all be a memory. I want him to grow up and look back on this and say man i was a turkey and my mom loved me so much that she fought until she got it right.

Thank you all for your support and I will give you an update as soon as Im able to give you one.



I'm sure you know this already, but as long as you have sole custody of your son, your ex has no say in the matter.Also, if you decide to place him in a facility, there are transport agencies that come to the home and bring your son to the place he will be staying.Having a positive mentor for him sounds great, I hope it works out for the both of you.


What is it exactly thats been triggering these tantrums? Are they small things like "not getting what he wants to eat"? I agree he needs help, and have you ever tried big punishments? If that don't work, try and pay most of your attention to what he does. But not like spying, just observe how he acts around you and see if you can figure it out.


Everything that I have read on Asperger's syndrome doesnt say anything about violent outburst. He doesnt exhibit any of the other symptoms, but its worth a shot


What triggers his bad violent episodes is exactly that (not getting what he wants, or his way). I have tried all sorts of punishment, i agreed to the rewards system with him-all he had to do was be respectfull and do what he was told for 4 days so that he could go somewhere on saturday. On the last day, he decided he wanted to buck me and argue with me. I told him he wasnt going and the fighting started. It is like watching a 2 year old throw a fit honestly. I cannot focus all of my attention on him. he is now 14 years old and he knows the difference between right and wrong. His response to hitting me was well i figured my mom would just beg me to come home after a few days. Not a "Im sorry:" in any of that. Ive been trying to figure out what is wrong for over 2 years now


So 4 days was too long.  Try again, for 3 days. 


I myself have a bipolar son - soon to be 14 year old. Before being medicated he was like this. His medication for ADHD (which you do not mention) made his being bipolar (also) worse. He was a self-harmer and extremely violent and destructive like this. I, too, thought he had learned it from his father. Well, he also inherited it from his father. Bipolar Disorder also has some of the social issues that Asperger's has. Untreated it may look like ODD which is a conduct disorder. In your situation, your son may refuse to take medication. You have choices, though. I called the police when the violence became too much, the destruction, too much. They only had to talk to him once in my case. If you are afraid in your own house, and/or your younger child is, you need to do this. It signals the seriousness to the teen who needs to know that now he is as responsible as an adult for the harm or destruction he dishes out. Therapy only helps when the kid trusts the therapist. If he trusts a woman, get a woman. If he trusts a man, get a man. And pick your battles. If he won't leave, take the other child and leave. If the house is destroyed, call the police. That's their job. Police records are sealed at 18. Get him the help he needs now. With a bully, you need strength, that is the only reason I suggest the police first. Child Protective Services will get involved if the other child is at risk. CPS came after me for my kid's behavior and that's when I went to the top of the list to get him help. They are not there to take you to task...they are there to help the kid...and the younger kid, too. They can help you. Ask law enforcement people who can help.

i am dealing w/ simialr issue i live in a toen called asa grande it between pheonix & tucson az my son attend a school called villiage which is a miidle shool and at that school they have a behavior modification program that my son has respond good to at his last school i was getting calls on a regular basis but w/ this new program i get alot less call or notes home if your what the phonw number so u can get more information on how the program works so u can see if there is anything in your town simialr let me know good luck

what is neurfeedback? i am very interested du to the fat that i have a 13 son w/ adhd odd dign. dr r r/o bipolar i am waiting for a neurpsy evaluation at this time i reenly spoke to an aunt in mo who work w/ children who have autism & she suggested that he might be she said alot of children r mis dign because they illness share so many of the same symtom & he does not show any one symtom that r/ o the othe illness so any info would help and am trying so many things

Neurofeedback may be biofeedback. I've heard some people have good results with that. Makes the person aware of their own body as reactions occur.

This could be my story. This morning the police took my 13 year old son away for domestic violence against me. He has been diagnosed with ADHD and ODD. My son is adopted and I don't know his birth families medical history. I do know that I fear for my life and his sister's life. For now, my husband can hold his own. I have a court appearance on Monday. I don't want a child in my home that is a threat to his younger sister and me. I realize that I don't have the skill set to handle my son. We have tried all kinds of medication and medical doctors and therapist. He is becoming more of a threat with every pound he gains. Two years ago, I could have prevented him from hitting me. With his extra weight and anger, my daughter and I are at risk. Over a year ago, after he “lost it” in school and had to be restrained, I tried to find some place for him. When a child is yours, it appears he is yours for life.... unfortunately; I don't want this child to end my life or any of my families. I don't think that the courts or doctors can help us. There is so much on the internet about every topic you can think of, but there is very little about handling this type of domestic violence. I wish I had the character of the parents who fought for "Megan's Law". It is not always the child who needs protection. Parents are at risk and need help!

Violence in teens is increasing day by day and the Stats are alarming. There are various reasons why teens go violent; mental problems, stress, social circle/peer groups, teens that are doing drugs and who join gangs. In your case it's most probably due to some behavior problems or mental health problems, so consultation with a psychiatrist/psychologist can be helpful. But whatever the case is, we are now seeing daunting scenario of our youth. I read on this blog " " that " Just recently, CNN reported a heart-breaking news about a Berkeley teen who was convicted in the murder of his father. The victim was raising three kids on his own when one of them, for reasons unknown, murdered him with a gunshot to the head. The judge handling the case found the 16-year-old teen guilty of first-degree murder with an enhancement for using a gun in the death of his 40-year-old father." So what do we all expect of our future which lies in the hands of our younger generation. The scenario was quite different in previous generations that have some believes and values and reasonably less behavior issues.