April 26, 2019 at 2:09 am #114984
In a previous post, I mentioned my wife’s ADHD son’s strange behavior, in terms of pawing and kissing his mom and sister. My wife’s kids were with us again last weekend. We’ve forbidden her son to play a game called Fortnite on his xBox after 10pm at night, because he keeps the entire household awake by shouting and blaspheming until 2am in the morning (plays online with his friends), which is a problem for the rest of us who’re trying to sleep. (Relevance below.)
I have a son of my own, from my late wife, aged 18. My son and her son sleep upstairs on the first floor in a loft area. There is a wall between her son’s bedroom and the bathroom, which doesn’t go all the way to the roof, because it’s in a loft area, but it’s high enough for privacy, about 8 feet. Well, it used to be high enough.
Because we’ve forbidden her son to play Fortnite after 10pm, he now claims he’s bored, and, because he’s bored, he has become a Peeping Tom. Well, that’s his excuse. So when my son is having a bath or using the bathroom, stepson clambers up on a bookcase, and stares at my son over the bathroom wall. This is, for obvious reasons, creeping my son out completely, and who can blame him? Once again, stepson is not a small kid any more, but a teenager in Grade 11, so how the hell can this kind of behavior be normal? We’ve tried talking to him, but he just ignores us, and even swears at his mom when she tries to discipline him. How do we stop this really creepy and bizarre behavior?
April 27, 2019 at 9:33 am #115104
Hmm! He might have things going on along with the ADHD. One thing I know about video games and ADHD is that they’re a highly stimulating activity, and something that’s highly stimulating is needed to wake up our ability to focus. I don’t ever remember swearing at my videogames or being inappropriate with my family when I was bored, though. He may have another thing he likes- contrary to many with ADHD, I was super into reading when I was a kid and would be up until 2am reading horror stories to keep the adrenaline going. I know it’s problematic where sleep is concerned but there wasn’t much I could do about that. I remember horror books being so engaging to me that I’d have to sneak flashlights into my room because my parents would yell at me if the lights were on. I’d read them during school. If he has a set of thrill-seeking behaviors maybe he can be redirected to something non-destructive like that. Not sure if that is a perfect example as many people with ADHD don’t like reading, but redirection can help.
The inappropriate behavior and verbal abuse toward his mother needs to be addressed clinically. I have many problems that are clearly rooted in ADHD but I wasn’t terrorizing my family like that in my childhood (or now,) and one should expect that he act appropriately with regard to his family. While engaging in stimulating activities is normal, engaging in immoral activities is showing a lack of understanding how other people are feeling. Try using statements with him like “when you look at people while they’re in the bathroom they feel disgusted and unsafe.” And also he needs to be in a clincial office.
April 29, 2019 at 8:23 am #115353
I agree that it sounds like it’s time for some professional intervention. This peeping behavior could be innocent, but it’s inappropriate either way, so it needs to be addressed. And swearing at his mom isn’t acceptable either. Will he see a therapist or counselor?
ADDitude Community Moderator, Parenting ADHD Trainer & Author, Mom to teen w/ ADHD, LDs, and autism
April 30, 2019 at 9:15 am #115564
You should search for the best psychiatrist in your area. Since the stepson is older you can look at book teen and adult specialists. Whatever is going on is most likely beyond ADHD. As for your own son, why don’t you let him shower in your own bathroom or something? He shouldn’t have to put up with this.
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