15 year old son had cancer and smokes and is bad tempered

by kel

my son had leukemia at the age of 7, it took around four years to get through the treatment but he now at the age of 15 has the all clear. he has now been left with a small hole in the heart due to all of the chemo treatment he has had to have, he has a really bad temper, swears at me, kicks things, smashes things, calls me names and says he hates me, and does nothing he is told. i have found him to be smoking many times and found smoking materials in his bag and pockets many times which i have just thrown in the bin, i also suspect he is smoking canabis, we row constantly and never get on, im so worried about his health i cant just let things go, whereas my husband says he knows the risk let him get on with it and learn for himself, he thinks im not letting him grow up and that im babying him too much which is why he seems to hate me!

me and my husband row about him all of the time and it causes so much stress in the house, we also have another son age 17 and a daughter age 8 and a baby due any day now, if i tell my son he is grounded and not allowed out he just sneaks out when im not looking and he never comes home till very late, he is not eating healthy which is what doctors say will keep his cancer away, just junk food all of the time, we have been to family counselling in the past but it didnt seem to do anything and my husband couldnt keep going due to work commitments so we kind of gave up, my son has also been tested for adhd which we were told he hasent got as he is not like it when he is at school, he has been in so much trouble with the police recently too, he has had to go to court for stealing too. we may get chucked out of our social housing if his behaviour carries on, which is a very big worry also. im really at my wits end with it all and i am thinking of putting him into care only i feel so guilty about feeling like that because i know he has been through so much in the past, everyone says he is making up for lost time, when he was stuck in a hospital bed for four years!

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Jun 29, 2012
15 year old with attitude
by: Laura Ramirez

I'm so sorry to hear about the ordeal that your son and your family suffered through. It is a tough situation because often situations like this drive family members apart instead of making them closer and proving to them that they have the strength and courage to get through tough situations.

Your son is angry and this anger needs to be addressed because he's obviously on the path of self destruction. To smoke when he's already gone through a bout with a serious health issues shows great disregard for the gift of life and the fact that despite all odds, he managed to survive.

I understand that you feel bad about what your son has had to suffer through, but try to understand that this is part of his path and this experience is part of what will make him into a man who knows that he can deal with the tough curve balls that life throws his way. Be careful that your sense of guilt is not enabling him ... I think this is what your husband may be concerned about. In some ways, you need to stop protecting your son's feelings and excusing his poor behavior so he can start to step up and become a man. (I am currently developing a vision quest program to help parents and teens achieve this and will post more about it in the future so please stay tuned.)

The fact that your son shows diesregard for you after all you've done for him and that this disrespect is now getting him into trouble with outside authorities who will not have the same patience and compassion for his behavior that you do is a tell that he needs help and needs it now before he really gets himself into trouble or in a situation that you cannot bail him out of.

I suggest that you read this review of the total transformation program which is an at-home behavioral change program that parents can use to help turn around troubled, angry kids and restore their sense of peace, sanity and unity in the home. It is a very effective program that has a high success rate with kids who are suffering from these issues. The big idea of the program is that kids will start feeling better once they start making the choice to start doing better, rather than the other way around. The program guides parents through the process, so they can help their teens.

You obviously love your son, so get him help. Thank you for posting and reaching out for help. Sometimes, it takes a lot of courage to do so.

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