I am like a broken record when it comes to how cute and sweet my oldest son was as a baby. He has always been tender hearted and so eager to please. But as he approaches the ripe old age of 8, he has gotten in touch with his bitter side. I wrote about how small he was last year, and he is still every bit as tiny. I wonder if that isn't playing a role in the attitude he has developed. He won't open up to me and tell me what is going on in his head, but it is clear from his actions that something has changed. This little kid who played baseball (and soccer and tennis and football and anything with a ball basically) with all his heart has recently decided he doesn't want to play sports anymore. He used to get nothing but 90 and 100% on assignments-now he is getting 60-80% on things. He used to be compliant and happy to be in our company. Now he wants to be on the couch in our basement, alone, for hours on end, watching shows that are not age appropriate. He is 8! I thought I had at least until 12 or 13 for this crap. So, now I have had to put parental controls on the DISNEY channel, yes, that's right, DISNEY. He has been watching Hannah Montanah, ICarly, Suite Life, Wizards of Waverly Place, Sonny with Chance-all are Disney or Nikelodean shows. All are about teenagers disrespecting authority-largely unsupervised and with little or no family structure. Jackson doesn't really like cartoons that much-he prefers shows that are not animated, but there just isn't much in between cartoons and this teenager garbage.
We did have a talk with his teacher, then a follow up with him that seemed to get through, but I can tell it's going to be a tough road getting him to open up. He is a very proud kid-he doesn't want to let anyone down, and he will risk letting himself down to avoid it.