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Mom calls teenager lazy; husband says, 'stop, you know they have issues.' AITA?

Mom calls teenager lazy; husband says, 'stop, you know they have issues.' AITA?

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When this mom is furious with their child, she asks Reddit:

"AITA for calling my child lazy?"

I (39F) and my husband (40M) have 4 kids together, L who is 21, T who is 17, B who is 14, and R who is 9. This story focuses on T.

T has never been much of a good kid, but we still loved and supported them any way we could, loving them unconditionally. They suffer from ADHD, like my husband. The difference is that T uses it as an excuse for everything. Didn't do a chore? They're "forgetful". They fall behind in school? They can't sit still or focus.

A bit over a week ago, my kids got out for Christmas break and T has done nothing but lay in bed for most of the week on their phone. If they aren't laying down, they lounging around the living room or going out to the store or to school to catch up on work (they have that opportunity at their school).

They only get up out of bed at around 11 am after I tell them to. Their only chore is to wash dishes, but they hardly do that.

Today, I was fed up with not having room in the kitchen and I yelled at T to get up. Once they came out of their room, I scolded them about the dishes and how they never do them, calling them lazy and ungrateful. They did end up doing them, but they had an attitude the whole time.

After they washed a load of dishes, they went back to their room to clean up a bit. My husband said I was a bit of an asshole for calling T lazy, that i know they have issues; that it's bad parenting, as they do have stuff going on at school as well, drumline (?) being one of them, but I disagree. I was simply calling it as I saw it, and what I saw was laziness. AITA?

Let's see what readers thought.

wall2k45 writes:

YTA. Those aren’t excuses. They are symptoms of ADHD. Time blindness is a thing too. ADHDers often get caught up hyper focusing on one thing and lose track of time.

Plus it’s often hard for them to focus on a task if there aren’t immediate benefits from completing it. It helps to give a firm deadline and structure for expected tasks.

Sounds like there could be some depression mixed in there too. Probably doesn’t help if his parents don’t think he’s much of a good kid because of a cognitive condition.

The way ADHD was handled when we were kids was very much lacking. Back then it was all about attentiveness and being hyper. They didn’t even talk about all the other symptoms. How your husband may have tackled it might not be the best approach for your son. Calling him lazy isn’t going to help anyone.

sassgoddess writes:

For calling them lazy? NTA. My mom called me that as a teen (and even now at 28) and it's not like I hate her or anything. Tbh, sounds like they are doing what people are calling "weaponized incompetence" pointing it out all the time and blaming it on that. However, you KNOW they have ADHD.

So yeah, YTA for not helping them do better. Help them help themselves. My mom didn't know if I did, she just thought I was lazy (and probably still thinks so). I mean I don't know if I have it or not, but the more I hear about it, the more it tracks. (Also, my little sister got diagnosed.)

I wish I could go see a therapist or get diagnosed or get some meds to see if they would help. I'm tired of being "lazy" when I have a million things to do. I wish I got diagnosed earlier so I can get it in check. You know how much sh&t I could've accomplished in my life if I had help?

Instead, here I am, going back to college, AGAIN. This is my THIRD time trying. And I'm trying even harder now that I know I might (probably) have it. So please, help them instead of calling them lazy, cause maybe 85% of the time it's not) laziness. (Just according to my experience. Again, so much I wish I could do if I could just get up, including cleaning.)

autumnwandering writes:

YTA. Laziness is not the problem here. Under managed ADHD is, and frankly, so is poor parenting. You won't get any results by blaming a disabled person for being disabled.

ADHD is a disability and with a complex range of symptoms that need management to help children thrive. Time blindness, executive dysfunction, hyperfocusing on certain tasks, and depression are all part of ADHD. You children need HELP. Not judgment.

You think they don't get enough of that from their peers and teachers who don't understand? You're their parent! It's not just your job to love them; It's your job to educate yourself and advocate for them, make sure they are receiving proper care (Do they have a coach?

Are they getting therapy or medicine? When was it last adjusted? Do they receive support at school?), and to support them as they grow so they can learn to function with this disability that effects every aspect of their lives- and will for the rest of their lives. (Even things like eating, sleeping, and showering are effected as I'm sure you know well!)

Looks like the jury's out. What do YOU think?

Sources: Reddit
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