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Topic : 03/23 Homework Hell

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Created on : Friday, December 01, 2006, 03:23:49 pm
Author : DrPhilBoard1
(Original Air Date: 12/07/06) When it comes to helping kids with school assignments, some parents just don’t make the grade. Angela says her 12-year-old son, Masen, takes up to six hours to finish his homework, and she says she can’t stop nitpicking. Her mother, Gayle, says Angela acts like a drill sergeant, and has called Masen "lazy and useless." What’s behind Angela’s frustration? Then, tempers rise as Angela feels her parenting skills are being criticized. Find out the conversation Dr. Phil has with her during the break. Plus, Dr. Phil gives Angela a test of his own, and Dr. Frank Lawlis, author of The IQ Answer, weighs in. Share your thoughts, join the discussion.

Find out what happened on the show.

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February 12, 2009, 6:02 am CST

Homework Hell

Dr Phil, I do hope you read your messageboards.


Homework Hell was aired where I live today. Dr Phil, for the 1st time I was surprized at your hanlding of a person on your show. To me, it seemed like you took only her mother/sister's versions into consideration and attacked the mother. There seemed to be other issues at play - such as the mother's relationship with her daughter - which the mother admits is very bad and the mother herself is intimidated by her daugther. could this be a factor for the mother bringing her daughter onto your show? Why did you presume that everything the mother did was wrong? As I you know, no single situation has only 1 factor at play. Why was the father not interviewed? And the son? And his school teachers? Is he in the right school for him? In large classes (ie more than 20) some children can get lost. Why was his homework taking so long to do - because it was too much, too difficult or because he was not interested?


I speak as both a 'terrible' student and the mother of such a child. I only excelled after school when I was at universtiy studying exactly what I wanted to study. My eldest son needed to be constantly pushed, my middle son, did all his work 'prefectly', the youngest was a 'nightmare' student like his mother and older brother. He finished school with a university pass due to mother learning with him 1 on 1: getting him up at 5.30 am to learn amidst arguments to wake up, learning after I came home from work, him not being allowed to go out except for Saturday night and a couple of hours on Sunday. This went on for 4 solid months. Needless to say mother had no social life either. Yes there were endless arguments, fights, cojouling etc during the school years. The youngest son went to workshops showing 'how to learn' techniques - which all later admitted was no different to what mother ie I, had been teaching them all along. Private lessons were great - for as long as they lasted. The learning techniques only lasted as long as the private lessons lasted.


The upshot is - today they thank me for all my input, in all its forms and variations. No. I am not a saint.  Nor am I anything spectacular. I am an ordinary mother with a deep concern for her children and their future and reaching their potential.


To me, a mere lay person, it seemed like you ripped her apart and demeaned her in public for her children and their friends to see. Instead of helping her manage herself better in relation to her child's homework.  I did not like the way you handled this mother.


That the mother on this program has problems is apparent.   How effective was this program for her, her children, her relationship with her mother and her child's success in the long term? When will you do a follow up on this family/situation?

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