The doctor doesn't recommend contacts, which would be helpful as far as all the sports he's involved in. The optician did put him in a pair of contacts for a day, but it was painful.
How can we convince our son that wearing glasses will benefit him and that we're not trying to torture him?
I'm not convinced that his attention span, desire to read, and slight grade drop have as much to do with his not wearing glasses as they do with his being at his present age and stage (plus the work usually gets tougher at this grade level).After consulting both a noted opthamologist, and optometrist, I would offer these suggestions concerning eye health and care:
1. They both said that they would be shocked if a talented doctor could not fit your son with contacts that would feel comfortable. One day contacts, while more expensive, can eliminate the need for the ritual (tedious to a teen) daily cleansing, preparing and storing of permanent contacts. Perhaps one of his athletic coaches could give testimony to the sports benefits of contacts. (A 13-year-old often will listen more to his coach than his parents on such a matter)
2. Visual hygiene exercises, usually given by optometrists, may be able to strengthen his eyes so that he does not require glasses or requires them situationally.
3. More frequent eye exams are needed, if he refuses to wear anything, to assure you that his refusal is not contributing to a medically significant worsening of his eyes. His vanity notwithstanding, he cannot be allowed to bring himself ill health.
An opthamologist, not you, should tell him the "bad news" about what his refusal to care for his eyes will bring him in the future.
Drop me a line after pursuing some of these suggestions.