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Topic : 12/25 Divorcing the Family

Number of Replies: 182
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Created on : Thursday, October 05, 2006, 04:44:59 pm
Author : DrPhilBoard1
(Original Air Date: 10/12/06) When you lose control of your kids and household, is it ever possible to get it back? Peggy was so fed up with her 17-year-old twin boys' behavior –- their yelling, tantrums, cursing, disrespect, fighting -- and the resulting strain on her marriage that she arrived at a radical solution: Divorce one of her sons from the family. However, when Peggy filed the paperwork to emancipate her son, the courts turned her down, leaving him in her care until age 18. Can Dr. Phil convince Peggy and her husband to accept responsibility for their deteriorating home situation? Can he inspire the teens to help calm the chaos? Or, is divorcing a family member a viable last-ditch option? Tell us what you think!

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October 13, 2006, 11:08 am CDT

The ole switch-a-roo

Quote From: sham7493

My grandson is 17 and he is in a desperate situation.  He was raised by his Mom until the age of 12, he was not required to do anything but eat, sleep and you know, just like a baby.  He went to live with his Dad at the age of 12 and was being taught responsibility. However, he rebelled because he didn't have to do anything at Mom's. 


Now things are really out of hand. He is failing out of school, he is skipping school and when he is there he doesn't do anything.  He has told many many lies and the teachers and administration don't want to do anything with him anymore.


My son is so frustrated with him that he is thinking about sending him back to his Mom just so that he can have some peace of mind for a awhile.  They fight and yell at each other just like the family on the show tonight. 


If he goes to his Mom's he will quit school in a couple weeks.  He has no ambition to do anything and over the years he has learned that he cannot do anything right for anyone.


I love him so much and I want to help him, but I am almost 60 years old, I work a full time job in a doctors office.  I go in at 7 am and get off at 6-7 pm three nights a week.  What should I do?  I was thinking having him come to live with me,  I am in a 1 bedroom apartment and I cannot afford to move to a larger apartment.  Besides I don't know if he will stay with me long enough to make the move.  I believe in love and responsibliity and that is something he just doesn't believe in right now.


Where can I go to get help,  I taped your show today and I intend to give it to my son to watch.  I know he needs suggestions for places to take my grandson for counseling.  My son will go too if he really believes there is some chance of help.





Works everytime. When mom gets sick and tired of son's antics, defiance, school-skipping, lies and I'm sure there's a long laundry list that still very wet even in hot temperature. Ship son off to dad's. Mom and dad can't stand each other anyway. So, this is payback time. And besides, let dad deal with what mom's been yelling about all this time to him.  Man, what kind of message are the parents sending to their son? He's not worth it. He's the problem (not the parents).  Make the other parent look like the villan/ the bad guy.


I heard Dr. Phil respond to a parents question about why her teen behaved so defiantly, "Why not?"


I also know that most parents are "well-intended", but that they go about raising their child in the wrong way. Makes sense to me. Another bottom line: If it doesn't work, than change it.


Bottom-line, parents: you set the tone for raising your child. You set the example. You are that's child's role model. Dr. Phil: "The same-sex parent is the most powerful role model that that child will ever have. That means, it's either going to be positive or negative.


Very simple.


My heart goes out to you, grandmother. You mean very well. You have nothing but good intentions. Unfortunately,  you cannot fix with what's happening to your grandson and with his parents for that matter. Really, it's beyond all the love and understanding you can provide. There's a lot more going on here than what the eye can see.  Good Luck, grandmother. I will pray that you will develop strength and guidance through all this ordeal.

October 13, 2006, 3:33 pm CDT

Drastic measures?

Quote From: t_hale

I would also like to know the answer to this one...I have the same thing happening in my household like I just posted.  I did the same thing and it has escalated (my twins are 13 now) and now my boys do exactly the same thing he does!  I am that mom!
 To the mother with the angry husband...
Unfortunately,  you HAVE to  solve this problem.  It is extremely harmful to your children to live in this kind of environment.  The things they experience nwo will affect them the rest of their lives.  You have to make it ABSOLUTELY clear that the behavior won't be tolerated from him.  Unfortunately, this may mean considering divorce and really sticking to it.  This situation is TOXIC to your family.  You cannot allow it to go on.  Not if you value your children's happiness, sense of security, or their self-esteem.  And I'm sure you do.  The goal here is to remove the behavior--if it means removing the dad, then that's the way it has to be. But I would hope that your husband will think it through and decide that getting help is preferable to having to leave.

But if he gets ONE whiff that he can fake you out on this, he probably will.  Which is why I say you have to really mean what you say.   Follow up your words with action and DON'T back down.  Half measures will get you nothing in a situation like this.

Good luck to you both.
October 13, 2006, 3:50 pm CDT

About the meds

Quote From: kathleenweber

My son and my daughter and my husband are on medication for ADD because my son was acting exactly like your son...he even tried to strangle a student that would not let him help with homework.  My daughter was depressed and my husband was out of control.  Ritalin for ADD is not a horrible thing and it has saved our family in more ways than one.  We are now a loving, caring, understanding family and I feel very sad that you cannot share in this joy and peace that we are experiencing since our ADD family members have their medication each day.  It is not a cop out and it is a real concern that professionals like Dr. Phil and his guest today did not let people like you know this fact.  Please contact a doctor and get your son the medication he needs as I consider it child abuse to not do so when a child acts and clearly needs it like your son.  Would you deny him water and air?  Do not deny him his life controlling medication.  why do we consistently continue to hurt and deny our loved ones what they need?

Okay, first things first. I have not denied my child medication. Child abuse, hum? My previous post stated that we have been to the family doctor, a neurologist, all types of therapy, family counseling, psyc doctors, etc... He has been on Adderall, Concerta, Straterra, any many other types of meds including anti-seizure meds to control outbursts. He is now on a medication for bipolar and seizures, and it seems to be working along with all of the counseling that he is receiving. So my point was when it gets to the point that you have to constantly watch a 13 year old because you are scared that they will hurt themselves or someone else something has to be done. And until a mother is faced with all of that turmoil they can never say never. And as for my favorite quote to all of those who thinks that woman was a horrible person for not knowing what to do or where to turn---Never look down on someone unless you are helping them up.

October 13, 2006, 11:33 pm CDT

My heart goes out to you

My husband and I adopted our niece (her birth mother decided to give her up at 16 months of age!) after 6 months of marriage; I was 21 finishing my second year of university, my husband 22.  We loved her dearly and felt "pressure" to keep her in the family.  At that time I naively believed that nurture beat nature.  Just as a note, we have no biological relationship to her as my husband and his sister were also both adopted.  Our problems started quite early.  By two the daycare wanted to separate her from the other children before nap time to settle her down.  We refused as we did not want her to be treated differently. She had a rough start in life and we were going to do all that we could to make sure that she grew up happy and healthy.  As the years progressed things got worse. During this time I gave up my career as a teacher and gave up the dream of having the family I always wanted.  We did have a son when our daughter was 6 but decided that it would be unfair to bring another child into our home.  We got our daughter many forms of help; medication, therapy, social skills programs, psychological assessments, tutoring, etc.. as well as getting her involved in a wide variety of extra-curricular activities.  We also took courses for ourselves to learn how to deal with her behaviours.  Nothing helped. My husband and my relationship was deteriorating as well as our relationship with our daughter.  At 14 she went to live with her birth mother because she told me that I wasn't her "bleep'n" mother and I couldn't tell her what to do and because we needed to save the rest of our family.  Her birth mother took us to court to get full custody, our daughter wanted her to have full custody as well, so we agreed.  We have continued to fully financially support her (yes we give her birth mother who has full custody money to pay for her expenses). People who have not gone through this simply do not understand.  Our saga continues as our daughter has now runaway from her birth mother and is currently residing at the Salvation Army.  We told her that we would help her financially if she stayed in school and out of trouble.  Hasn't happened.  I am happy to report that at 35 I had another son who is now 10 months old.  I now have the family that I dreamed of.  I absolutely believe that nurture plays an important role in raising a child.  So how do you explain our daughter?  It's like this.  A child is like a piece of clay, you massage it, squeeze it, knead it and mould it into a beautiful piece of art.  Sometimes you have a bad piece of clay, no matter what you do with it you just end up with a bad piece of clay.

I really hope that Dr. Phil can help this family.  Maybe we never got the right help.  My heart goes out to them. 

October 14, 2006, 7:58 am CDT

Made my kids watch part of the show

It was real interesting...last night we all sat down (my twin 13 yos,dh and I) to watch our taped episodes of Lost  that we miss due to football practice...after Lost my dh dissappeared before I could gather the courage to suggest they all watch the small part I taped of the show (like the first 11 minutes)...and I asked the boys if they thought that was us...believe it or not they both said "NO"!!!  The one I'm having most troubles with was insistant that we did not sound or do the same!  HMMMM go figure that one? 

When he has one of his "episodes" he says stuff like "this family is no fun" "we live in a crappy house", nobody else's parents do what you do..."  And yet he didn't recognize the things he seems to get angry about?!   I think we are identical with the yelling and cussing and tirades!  I don't get that...why can't they see it?   

They  (dh, and both boys) had a go of words while we watched Lost...actually twice!  Over dumb things, like the spelling of a word!  ...they can't just sit with each other and have a nice relaxing evening any more.  They seem to always be doing this testosterone dance!  I am so tired of the tension in the house!

October 15, 2006, 9:08 am CDT

Help for those with ADD and ADHP

If you want help with difficult children, esp. those with ADD or ADHD, buy "Total Transformation", it will help. 

October 16, 2006, 6:30 pm CDT

10/12 Divorcing the Family

Quote From: tweetegirl

After watching today's show, and then reading the messages on the Message Board, I don't know where to start.  I'm a mother of 2 teenagers, a son - 15 who has a Severe Case of ADHD, OCD, ODD, LD in Reading & Math & Depression and a daughter - 13 who has LD in Reading & Math.  Their dad left us 9 months ago in Feb. 2006 after 17 1/2 years of marriage, moving from Iowa to Georgia in June 2005 (for a new beginning), going from a happy home to one just like I saw on T.V. today, taking my son from Dr. to Therapist to Psychistrist, trying to find out what the teachers kept complaining about, what I kept witnessing at home and what help I could get for him.


At that time in our lives, we had our own business & money was not an issue.  However, trying to find the right people to help my son was.  My ex didn't think anything was wrong with "his son", and I was left to deal with everything on my own.   Running a business with a spouse out of our home, taking care of 2 children, taking care of our home, sometimes having a 2nd job (in the evenings & on the weekends) to makes ends meet, arguing & yelling with my spouse, watching my marriage & my family fall apart, taking my spouse back after he had an affair, having a Dr. screw up a surgrey on me thereby leaving me with chronic pain & depression in 2000, having my son accuse me of child abuse & being under investigation by Child Services, and taking care of my son's issues was too much for me to handle some days. 


At that time in my life, I didn't have the support of my spouse, my family (mother, father, etc.),  or the professional world.  It was so hard to even be near my son, talk to him or try & understand why he did what he did when he accused me.  His anger gets the best of him, & when he doesn't get his way, he says anything to get back at you.  Talk about added stress & tension when things were already tough.  If you don't have the resources or the time or the money, sometimes things just start to fall apart & I can truly empathize with that family.  After moving to Georgia and taking the initiative to have him move out (thinking that we could work on our marriage while being seperated, but instead that was what he was waiting for all along & instead of working on our marriage, he just wanted to end it), my life went from bad to worse.  I can't work due to the side effects of the meds I take.  I depend on SS Disability & Medicaid each month.  My life has been turned upside down.  Their dad only sees them on the weekends when his schedule permits.  Needless to say I have some anger built up towards him for that & some other things too.  Unfortunately I no longer argue & yell with my spouse, but continue to do so with my 2 teenagers.  They are verbally abusive to me & me with them - sometimes.  I try not to, but you can only be patient for so long & you can only be understanding for so long.  I have literally begged & cryed out for help, but the school system can help only so much, & the church didn't even call me back.  What am I suppose to do when I have no money, no support, no resources, no where to go & no one to turn to, and I feel like I'm stuck between a rock & a hard place. 


Unless you have lived in my shoes, in my life, in that parent's shoes from T.V. today, or you yourself have lived in a similar situation, then you have no right to sit there and judge me or that couple on T.V. today or anybody else for what they are trying to do when faced with a situation that they don't know what to do in.  They might not have done "the right thing", but they did "have good intentions" - if you were listening to what the mother was saying.  We are not all Therapist or Psychatrist, or Dr.s, or people with all the right answers to all of these difficult situations we are sometimes put in.  But you'd think that when so many people know about it, all they do is shake their heads & and say tisk, tisk or shame on them for doing what they did;  when people ask for help but don't receive it, whos to blame for that;  and when people don't have the money to pay for it, all you hear is too bad so sad for them & hope is dosen't happen to you, right? 


I wrote all of this about myself because even though you might think those parents did something terrible, or unthinkable, or whatever, I can relate totally.  I went from a 3-level home, with my own business, with a happy family & 2 kids, to a household of horror & no money.  It happens & I never, ever thought that it would happen to me!  So the next time you decide to judge someone for what they do, I think you'd better look in the mirror first & remember that we weren't put on this earth to judge people. 


Single Mom - Stressed Out & Depressed - Wondering Where She Went Wrong

I just want to say I'm sorry for your circumstances and that I know how you feel.  some of us don't intend to have our families become what they have become and with health problems, and going it alone makes it so hard for us to dig our selves out of it all for our childrens sake and ours.  I hope and pray you find strength and help some where and somehow.  I've been searching hard for help in the last couple of months and it seems its just not to be found.

I really wish i could give some to you.


October 19, 2006, 4:46 pm CDT


Quote From: hairlady222


I just wanted to disagree with the staement that it takes 2 parents working to pay bills unless you live in a tent.


I am a stay at home to 2 children, ages 15 and 4 and I do not work outside of the house.

My husband is the only money maker in our home and I live in a house built in 2003 in a pretty nice neighborhood.


We do not have all the bells and whistles but I am home with my kids. 


Have you ever heard Dr phil say if you have to move to a smaller home do so, if you have to drive a used car do so... He didn't say you have to live in a tent.


There are many families out there who have a stay at home parent.

October 20, 2006, 9:54 am CDT

10/12 Divorcing the Family

My husband wants to "divorce" his daughter. I wish we could too but the court system doesn't allow it.   

My husband and I had to go to court last week.  we finished paying maintenance in August for their daughter who is now 25.  His ex who lives in another province filed in april to take us back to court to continue support in the amount of 900 a month, was 800 before, because she is still not done her bachelor of arts degree.  She had her hearing in may and ours was last week. I had to represent my husband as we cannot afford a lawyer (but she can).  The judge did not throw it out. he orded an adjournment so she can provide more info that I requested. So it's good for us and bad for us. mostly good because at least we will have more info and will probably only have to pay half that but i really thought it should get thrown out. she is taking a  bachelor of arts and then says she wants to take a two year bachelor of education and expects us to pay for that too. we went to court last year and they said she was doing a four year program so the judge then set it to end this summer when she would be done. Now they say she's doing a reduced credit course load. last year she took six courses but only three go to her degree. so if she doesn't take her sstudies seriously why should we have to pay for them still. I mean come on already, she's 25 and is still at least a year away from graduation with only a 2.07 gpa. and she doesn't work. the judge says that courts push for them to get their degree to be employable. however she has only worked the last three summers as a nanny so she still has no work experience. how employable will she be. it is all so frustrating and aggravating i'm so fed up with it all i want to scream sometimes. we don't talk to them anymore. there's no point. all the do is complain and lie and  my husband wants to disown her.  I don't blame him. we have three kids, 12, 8, and 5. we both work hard for our money. he's a long haul trucker and i do daycare in our home. we only have one vehicle -used-, no cable, live in a rented townhouse,  most of our stuff is second hand, we both still donate to charities and i do alot of volunteer work. for us $800 a month is a lot of money (almost our entire rent) and we could do so much more with that money for our family and for the community.  the daughter and ex just think i'm the biggest bitch in the world because i'm helping him fight this. am i?

October 20, 2006, 10:42 am CDT

10/12 Divorcing the Family

Quote From: tammyo1973

I just wanted to disagree with the staement that it takes 2 parents working to pay bills unless you live in a tent.


I am a stay at home to 2 children, ages 15 and 4 and I do not work outside of the house.

My husband is the only money maker in our home and I live in a house built in 2003 in a pretty nice neighborhood.


We do not have all the bells and whistles but I am home with my kids. 


Have you ever heard Dr phil say if you have to move to a smaller home do so, if you have to drive a used car do so... He didn't say you have to live in a tent.


There are many families out there who have a stay at home parent.

Thank you and I totally agree with you. I stay home too and my husband makes a modest living. We live in a cute little apartment and drive a 12 year old car and buy on sale clothing. But we are all happy...LOL

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