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New here, some questions

I’m not sure if this is the right place to post, but I’d love some advice or help please.
My son is 14 and has had suicidal thoughts for a couple of years now. He is an amazing boy, so much personality and knowledge and passion, but fails to see it in himself. He really lacks self confidence and actually hates himself. And he hates his life.
I separated from him dad about 6 years ago and obviously that has been a struggle for him.
I have always had a good relationship with my boys, but He’s now gotten to a stage where he says he hates me. He blames me for a lot of things but never actually pinpoints what it is that he hates about me, so I have no idea what I’m doing wrong.
He has big anger issues and when he gets frustrated by things then he ‘flips out’- gets very angry, aggressive, trashes my house, smashes things up, hits out and me, his younger brother and our dog.
This is turn makes him hate himself more as he knows how wrong it is and hates that element of himself.
His younger brother (10) is now really feeling the effects of his temperament now, and hates being on the receiving end of it and that it makes our lives so difficult.

I constantly blame myself for how he is, and that somehow this must stem from my parenting. I feel like a failure that I can’t make my own son happy in his life.

I would just really appreciate any words from anyone with how I can deal with this and start to take it all away for him?
Many thanks.

Re: New here, some questions

Hi there
My youngest son just turned 18 in February and he suffers depression and anxiety. A lot of what you have mentioned I also live with. My son seemed to be your typical teenager but he's always been a beautiful kids, very caring and loving and one to always be the social worker in his friend group as they tend to gravitate to others in need and put them before themselves.
My son after his pop passing (my dad) 4 years ago started self-harming. He's attempted suicide, thankfully passer by seen and called police and a lovely lady talked him down. I was at work and had no idea it broke me. It breaks my heart that he feels the way he does. He's been to doctor's, psychiatrist, counsellor, had medication etc but to be honest it has not helped. Medication made him feel nothing, like a zombie, talking about it helped only to a certain point to see when he is about to crumble but the feelings are so strong he can't cope. He doesn't want to wake up, her tired of trying and it is a daily life struggle.
He hates feeling that way he feels helpless, hopeless, failure, worthless and annoyed at his life. He is such an awesome guy and people are drawn to him and love him but behind the mask he is just hanging on.
I talk with him, I hold him, I tell him how much I love him and how much his family and friends love him and to please not give up and please not give in. I tell him I will support him and just be here for everything even things mum's don't really want to hear you just need to be.
I remind him everyday is new and that anything can happen and that even though he can't see it right now he is going to have a good life he will find his way. When we talk his feelings go back to even a younger age about being sad etc and I never seen it. All kids struggle especially there days but boys really have it super tough. When he goes out I tell him have fun, enjoy your time and be safe. It keeps me up and I worry so much but gotta give him breathing space too. The only advice I have is get him to a doctor, do a mental health check and try the path it may help your son. Every person responds to different ways to manage and cope. Best of luck to you and know you're not alone ❤

Parent/Carer Community Champion

Re: New here, some questions

Hi JLT79

sometimes all the love in the world can't break through the barriers people put up.

I see a positive in. as much as after his breakouts he knows he has done wrong, hurtful things. Things would be much worse if that realisation wasn't there.

With medicare you can arrange a mental health plan through a GP,for him to see a psychologist, this will be free it they bulk bill. If your son can open up for them his path could be a less rocky one. It sometimes is really much easier to open up to someone outside the family /friends circle.

I know some one whose son had similar problems. So to protect her family, even though it hurt her to do it she had to send him away at 14. She paid for him to stay and work on a country property with other children, they were all taken to school picked up again, but had to contribute to jobs /chores on the farm . Last time we spoke she told me he is really getting better. I think it's been about a year. She has hopes that it won't be long before its safe to have him home with his sister and  stepfather. He also saw a psychologist during this time, stay strong for your boy, it's just sometimes love is just not enough

Star contributor

Re: New here, some questions

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Hi @JLT79 ,


I'm so sorry to hear that your son has been having such a tough time. It sounds like that must be taking a big toll on you and your family as well, especially if he is directing his anger towards you and his brother. I agree with the other posters - it sounds like seeing a GP and getting a mental health care plan for him could be a really good option to explore, they can also connect you with a psychiatrist or pediatrician if they think that's needed as well. 


We do also have some resources on the ReachOut Parents website on helping teenagers to deal with anger,  and tips for de-escalating situations when there's a lot of conflict, you can find those here.  It's really important that you and your other son can feel safe in your home, 1800 RESPECT may also be useful people to chat to about ways to help your son manage his anger- they have counsellors available 24/7 who have a lot of experience in helping people deal with family violence. 


You sound like a really caring, compassionate and switched-on mum, and I can hear how much you're blaming yourself for how your son is feeling and behaving - depression can have really complex causes, and it doesn't sound like you've done anything to cause this. He may lash out at you because he feels safe doing so. Unfortunately as parents we can't always fix our children's problems, but you can support him as he starts to develop the tools to get through this. 


I'm also wondering if you would find it helpful to chat to someone to get some support for yourself? Supporting a teenager who's experiencing mental health difficulties can be incredibly stressful - we do have a free, confidential one to one parents support service with professional counsellors that you can access here


Wishing you and your family all the best - I hope things start to improve soon for you all. You're not alone.