Judge Jay-Jay delivers her verdict on a teenage boy and his mum’s new partner

More FM radio diva Jay-Jay Feeney delivers her verdict on your biggest dilemmas

Boy trouble

Help me, Jay-Jay!

I was a single mum for four years and I met my new partner in October. He’s an amazing man and is very good with my kids. My two daughters, who are 11 and eight, love him, but my 14-year-old son has never given him a chance. He hates my partner and it’s causing us all a lot of stress.

Right from day one, he has been rude, sulky and walks around with the worst attitude when my partner is home. I’ve tried talking to him to figure out why he doesn’t like him, but he won’t give me a clear answer. It’s extremely frustrating. What can I do?

Monica, Kāpiti

Hey Monica,

This is a tough one. For the next couple of years, your son is at that age where he is going to be a little harder to persuade. He is obviously protective of you and may be a little jealous that you’ve found someone else to love.

Keep reminding your son that your new man isn’t a threat and won’t change anything about the way you love your son. He is probably scared this is the case. And make sure you continue to include your son in all family activities. Ignore his sulky behaviour. If he knows it isn’t going to get him any attention, he will soon get bored of doing it.

Keep everything positive around your son as far as your new relationship is concerned. Get your partner on board to keep things happy and fun where possible. Does your son have a hobby or passion? Could your partner connect with him there? For example, if your son loves Stars Wars, maybe your man can watch a movie marathon with him or take him to Armageddon.

Does your son like sport? Get your partner to offer to kick the ball around or play with him. Music? Listen to it together. If your partner takes an interest in your son, this will help a lot.

Don’t tolerate your son’s rudeness, though. Tell him he can sulk all he likes, but rude and disrespectful comments are not acceptable. He’s a teenager, so he’ll break these rules often – just remember to ignore his bad behaviour and attention-seeking, but continue to show him you love him and let him see how happy you are when your son is happy too.

Good luck, Jay-Jay

A problem shared is a problem halved! Send your sticky issues to Jay-Jay – email [email protected].

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