I have a 9 year old son, and unfortunately his father and I have divorced. I moved (with my son) a little over 2 hours away to be closer to my family. It was an extremely hard decision, and I never wanted the divorce to happen.
My son adores his father, which I am fine with, but more than that he almost hates me. He constantly says rude and hurtful things to me. I’m not sure if they are always intended to be hurtful or if he just says what’s on his mind and doesn’t realize the hurt they cause. It’s like he simply doesn’t like much about me. I know he misses his father, and I tell him I do too, but should I hold him accountable for simply “not liking me much” and the comments that brings?
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While you can't control your son's inner thoughts, you can insist that he treat you with respect. At age 9, he understands the power of words and the effect that they have. Require him to be kind and respectful to you in both words and deeds, and accept nothing less. You can decide to put him on the Ticket System. (Search this site for descriptions). You can empty his room of all entertainment value and revoke all freedoms and privileges until he is consistently respectful and kind to all adults and authority figures. While you will love him no matter what he says to you, other people will not.
Whatever you choose, the key is to be concise, calm, confident and consistent. Please write again if you need further guidance.
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