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    Concerned with 11 yr old sons health
    Andi41 posted:
    Hi I'm a mom of two great sons. My oldest is 11 years old. My youngest is 8 years old. My concerns are with my oldest son. I am homeschooling him for the first time this year. He asked us if he could be homeschooled. Just so it is known, it was his idea. He has some friends that are homeschooled. Plus he was getting picked on at the public school he was attending. My concern is that he is very moody lately. He seems to be tired all the time and he says he is having headaches and stomaches. I have taken him to the doctors before because of this and they say he is fine. Just to get him to eat better and drink more water. I'm not sure if this is just a normal sign of coming into puberty or is he depressed. I don't want to subject him to doctors unneccesarily. But I also do not want to over look a problem if there is one. He is a very open child and talks to me alot about how he feels. How can I know the best course to take with him? Is there any information or books I could read about this? I am going to monitor his diet better and get more excercise in his day hoping that will help. He is under weight right now and he would rather watch tv or play video games than do physical activity. I just want him to be happy and healthy.
    momuv4girls responded:
    Hi Mom,

    Here is a link regarding adolescents and depression that may be helpful:

    I think you are right to be concerned, and it sounds like you are ontop of finding out if your son's mood is in the "typical" range.
    Exercise is great for boosting mood, along with a proper diet and plenty of sleep.

    Keeping track of his mood could be helpful also. Each evening you could write (privately) in a journal and list the "highlights" of the day. It doesn't have to be super involved, just a quick blurb like:

    Had a good morning, got up easily, ate a good breakfast and seemed pleasant all day - - no negative, angry outbursts.

    OR something like this:

    Didn't want to wake up after sleeping 12-hours. Was irritable and crabby when I gave him a ten minute warning to finishing up X-box. Was in an "off" mean mood most of the afternoon.

    By keeping a journal, you can look back over the week/months and see how he is doing. That way, if you do decide to take him to a Dr., you can review how its been going in a more accurate light then just relying on your memory.

    Hope this helps!
    Take care,
    Andi41 replied to momuv4girls's response:
    Dear Kathleen,

    Thank you so much for the advice. I will look into that link. And your idea about writing things down is really good. I'm definitely going to do that. We went to the library and the park today and he seemed happy. As a parent we always want the best for our children and want them to be happy and healthy. I never want to overlook or ignore any problem but I also do not want to be a worry wart. I guess it's a balance act in everything we do as parents.

    Thanks again,
    An_242696 responded:
    I feel for you. My son went through bullying which led to depression. He went from a happy go lucky kid who loved school to wanting only to play video games, dropped out of the YMCA and karate, just be came very insecure. He then proceeded to gain weight and become more insecure.

    Years later he still struggles with these things. I think that bullying is far more traumatic than people know. They choose the victims that it will be hardest on, like they can sense that some people are more sensitive than others.

    I also ended up homeschooling and that is the real tragedy, that the victim is the one who has to leave.

    I think you are on target though puberty also could be making him moody and tired. If I could do it over again I would try to find a different school instead of pulling my son out. At the time with work and all it was all I could think of to do.

    Maybe consider counseling if you can afford it. And try to keep him involved in outside activities. I admire you for taking on homeschooling, it is not easy. You sound like a very caring mom and I am sure that will help him to get through this.

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