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Anonymous asked in Pregnancy & ParentingParenting · 2 months ago

How to make 12 yr. old boy toughen up?

This child is extremely oversensitive. At the smallest thing he cries and we're just sick of it. We don't know how to make him toughen up. He doesn't have any friends because he just cries and hides. If anyone is upset in a room or if 1 little thing isn't right, he starts crying for hours on end. This kid is 12! It's so annoying, we try to be tolerant but it's gone on for too long! Both of his siblings, 15, and 4, aren't that sensitive, but the 4 yr old is learning from him. We've seen a psychologist, but his advice was only to have him break things. We tried that, it hasn't worked. We can't do martial arts because he'll do them irresponsibly. Our govenor just passed a stay at home order and I'm about to snap if I have to deal with this non-age appropriate behavior!

 

Update:

He's already been screened for Autism, he doesn't have it. He hates writing, drawing, reading, and sports. So he won't use any alternative methods to control his frustration.

Update 2:

He's been screened several times, all negative. But when he cries, he runs away, he locks his door or hides under blankets. He refuses to see or respond to anyone. He's always been oversensitive but in the past few years, its reached an extreme. He does have qualities that are on the autism spectrum, but he is not autistic, this has already been verified several times.

Update 3:

He has ADHD, and it's not that he's a boy, he just cries over every little thing. You tell him a joke and he's running away in tears. He refuses to talk to anyone while crying. 

Update 4:

No one's ever hurt him, and he's been screened for various emotional and mental issues. He just cries over every little thing and gets very easily agitated

12 Answers

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  • Anonymous
    2 months ago

    This is a sign of severe emotional issues, and possibly of bipolar disorder or major clinical depression. This child needs to be evaluated for mental ILLNESS ASAP. In fact, it should have been done YEARS AGO, when he first started manifesting signs of an issue. I suspect he's been having symptoms of mental illness for much longer than you realize. Being forced to stay at home has exacerbated the situation, for sure. The boy may benefit from being on medications to control his mood swings.

    The other thing this kid needs to be evaluated for is the possibility that he's been ABUSED in some way by someone. It could be someone at school, yes, but it's just as likely to be someone at HOME or that he knows well, such as a relative. It's estimated that in at least half of all child sexual abuse cases that get reported, the attacker is someone that the victim KNOWS, and knows WELL. An emergency situation like this pandemic, which has forced everyone to stay home and in close proximity to each other, also raises the risk of abuse and domestic violence, at least in some instances. Have you ever thought of ASKING the boy if someone has been mean to him or hurt him in some way?

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  • 2 months ago

    I hope you don't tell him all of this or even get mad at him when he cries. His crying all the time can be formed from him never feeling validated about what he feels because you've made it seem like a bad thing for boys to cry. I'm not saying that this is what you do but be make sure to ask him what's wrong and ask him why he's crying. You should remind him softly that some things don't need to be cried about. Lastly, make sure he knows that he can communicate with you about these things that bother him so much because while you think his problem is the smallest of inconvenience and can feel like the worst thing to him. Also, your child could be suffering from mental disabilities as well because overreaction doesn't just mean autism.

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  • Anonymous
    2 months ago

    Sensitive in what way? Remember 12 is a very difficult age. When my brother in law was that age he would cry out of everything. Maybe your 15 year old went through puberty in a different way. As a mother of 2 and the oldest sibling out of 6 I can tell you that in no way are kids ever the same or go through stages of life the same. My 5 year old is also extremely sensitive, while my 2 year old is super tough, my oldest was always a calm baby while my youngest is very active, my 5 year old's idea of  family Sunday is stay at home and watch movies, my 2 year old just wants to go outside as soon as someone opens the door. Also the fact that he has been screened for autism and they said he doesn't have it doesn't mean he doesn't have it. I have a 10 year old child in my daycare that cries all the time, even when you ask him a simple question that he can't answer. I've had him since he was 7 years old and he was screened at 8, he was seen by a psychologist and they said he didn't have autism. He was seen again recently after his mom insisted his behavior was not normal. He has autism, and is already getting therapy.

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  • 2 months ago

    Outta the womb into da tomb

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  • 2 months ago

    At 12, crying is actually normal. Crying on a normal basis however, is something that should be talked about. There could be an underlying cause to this. If everything is fine, however, crying it out can be a good thing. If your boy feels the need to cry over something small, quickly switch the mood. This has helped me in the past when my emotions become wild. Do something silly, make things fun and giggly. FORCE him to smile, and do not be upset with your son for needing to cry, it is instinct and he just can’t help it. He will overcome this phase! It happens for a lot of empaths who feel other people’s emotions. The only difference is that when they feel it, it is multiplied and more intense. 

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  • 2 months ago

    You should see another specialist. Maybe he's autistic. There are also medical conditions that cause uncontrollable crying. Psychologists aren't medical doctors. Have your family doctor check him with a physical exam and then refer you to an MD behavioral specialist.

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  • 2 months ago

    I hate the term toughen up, but it could be that he needs a manner to express his frustration alternatively.  One thing that might be helpful is to give him a punching bag so he can work out those frustrations on it instead.  Of course it is equally important that you don't respond to his crying as that would be to fall for his attempt to manipulate sympathy.  Good Luck.

    Edit:  You have to give a child ample opportunity to use alternative methods, not draw conclusions that they aren't useful.

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  • 2 months ago

    I'd do some planned ignoring and make sure you praise not whining/crying whenever you can. It's obnoxious, but ignoring the behavior and paying attention to behavior you want is often the most effective--- and definitely works better than shaming and humiliating.

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  • 2 months ago

    Sounds like some real emotional issues. Toughening him up won’t be real simple. He’s gonna much therapy and maybe meds. Is there anyone at all who can take him off your hands from time to time for the moment? 

  • Anonymous
    2 months ago

    Is he scared of spiders? 

    Put him in a box with spiders and dont let him out until he is used to it.

    Also I think extra spanking with more crying and less spanking with less crying, if he cries spank, if he cries more, spank and tell him to stop crying or ull do it more, if he stops no more spanks, if he doesn't stop spank harder then put in with the spiders again 

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