Do you think that boarding is a good solution?

Do you think that boarding is a good solution?

I raise my 12-year-old son alone, we get along well, we talk a lot. I am told that I discuss it justly, but I absolutely want to explain everything to him, even if he sometimes takes the lead. Despite this agreement, there are many conflicts because he plays the mediator for his father. We fight for education, correction, respect. Always repeat the same things. He still has an enuresis problem. The only solution I found with my family doctor is the boarding school. For now, it's going pretty well and curiously the enuresis problem reappears at home. Why? Do you think that boarding is a good solution? (Stéphanie, 33)

Catherine Marchi

Clinical Psychologist

answers

It is impossible to say whether the boarding school is a good or bad solution in the absolute. It all depends on the context, the reasons that led the parents to choose this solution, and the way the child experiences remoteness. It is certain that the boarding school, the "pension" does not have a good reputation. This is what we regularly threaten bad students and disobedient children! Yet the boarding school can sometimes be a solution that helps to relieve conflicting relationships because it allows to put distance between parents and children.

You raise your son alone. Maybe he feels your relationship is too fusional? In adolescence, boys need to cut the emotional bond they feel towards their mother. The Oedipal fantasies of early childhood resurface at this time and it is very guilt. Boys very often express their desire for autonomy and independence through aggression. The fact that you both live increases the natural need to separate.

The only way to find out if this is a good solution for your son is to discuss it with him. How does he feel? Is he happy to have his enuresis problem fixed? Does he have friends? Where are his grades? Is he in a good mood? Are the relations between you two less difficult? Does he look relieved or on the contrary sadder than before being in boarding school?

You do not talk about his father at all. What relationship does he have with him? Can you call him to the rescue? In adolescence, boys need male referents around them. Does your son have an uncle, a godfather, a teacher, someone close enough to whom he could talk if needed?

Here are some lines of thought but again, no solution chosen is completely good. The important thing is to find the most suitable and the least painful depending on the circumstances and personal history of each.

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