Reply To: Teen Doesn’t Want to Grow Up

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My son is now 20. He too has done the crying “I don’t want to grow up” thing as well. He is ADHD and has severe anxiety and OCD and a learning diability. During his junior year of HS he told me he never thought about going to college. In factm he said he never even envisioned what his life would be after HS. He did apply to and was accepted in several colleges but elected to attend a local college and live at home. He struggled his first year of college, although maintained an A average. He wasn’t \making friends (due to his social anxiety) and his OCD was preventing him from staying on stop of his school work. He took 2 quarters off from school to get treatment for his anxiety. He hopes to go back in the spring while continuing his treatment. His anxieties have prevented him from getting a job or learning to drive. But he does take Uber/Lyft and is about to learn to use public transportation. I’ve told him that as long as he is in school or working, he can stay at home. He is responsible for his own chores (laundry, calling in refills for his meds, etc.), helps around the house and is a very good, helpful kid. Generally kids with ADHD are several years behind in maturity and many are not able to go off on their own when their chronolocical peers do. I try to keep that in mind when I think about his future. I believe he will get there, it will just take him a lot more time and a lot more effort on his part and understanding on mine. And it goes withouyt saying that he needs treatment for his anxieties to learn to manage them and he needs to learn how to take care of himself and work toward independence. My younger son is nearly 15 (a freshman in HS) and while he too has ADHD, he does not have the anxieties my 20 year old has. He can’t wait to drive and leave home. In some ways he is more mature than my older son (at least more confidant) but his independece skills are lacking. At least I know what we need to work on these next few years. Its hard to watch our sons cry and be so afraid of their future. Give your son time, reassure him that you will be there for him, make sure he receives treatment for his anxieties and maybe some life skills classes.