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Parenting --Teens/my 15 year old brother drives my family crazy please Help !


hello, my 15 year old brother is one of the kindest people ever but he doesn't know how to make friends or how to be funny that's why I can always notice how some of his age-mates make fun of him which makes me feel so terrible because I feel like it's my fault .Even if we are related we are not similar:I'm the typical good student and I have a lot of friends while he keeps having bad marks which make my parents sometimes compare him with me !
Our family issues started when he became a teenager.Now his attitude changed , he is disrespectful and very rude  to my parents
who tried everything to please him and he started having friends who are suspected to be a bad company (my parents absolutely dislike his friends)my brother has turned someone who believe that he is free to  do whatever he wants (go out whenever he wants and come back whenever he wants) without any interruption by my parents who are now driven crazy by him specially my mom who keeps yelling and shouting and she started to suspect that he may be smoking cigarettes( but I don't believe so). This situation is worrying me a lot specially that my mom has some serious health problems in the past and she is always in danger of having them  back if she didn't cool down . What can I do in this situation ? please help me !

Hello Sarah,
It is wonderful that you are concerned both about your parents and your brother.
I don't know that there is much to do to help your brother directly as an older sister. But perhaps just continuing to be kind to him and to sometimes include him in your friendships might help him see himself differently.
I think it is often difficult for younger siblings when they can't complete with an older sibling. He cannot be the good student who is friendly and makes friends easily. That may mean that in order to find his identity he has to find fiends and acquaintances who also dislike school and do poorly academically. As a result, he may see his friends being more disrespectful towards their parents and others in authority.
As for helping your parents, perhaps you can help your mother see that yelling at your brother and getting angry is not going to solve any problems. It will only damage her health. Your parents need to work together to set rules and limits and then enforce those rules and limits with appropriate punishments and consequences. Instead of comparing your brother to you, they should seek help for him in order to do better at school. That could mean getting an educational assessment to figure out why he earns low grades and what recommendations could help him be more successful.
I hope this helps. Let me know if you have further questions. Best,
James Windell

Parenting --Teens

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James Windell


I am a parent trainer, psychotherapist, and author specializing in parenting issues.During the past 40 years I`ve worked with parents with discipline problems and challenging children. I give frequent lectures and workshops related to discipline, social skills, and aggressive children. I consult with various agencies and schools where there are child behavior problems. I am listed in the American Psychological Associations` media panel as an expert on parenting and am frequently quoted in leading magazines and newspapers.


I have worked in a juvenile court as a clinical psychologist and as a psychotherapist in private practice. In the Oakland County (MI) Juvenile Court, I developed an award-winning parent training program for parents of adolescent delinquents. In addition I have done group therapy with adolescent delinquents using a social skills-building model. I have consulted with courts, schools, churches, preschools, and domestic violence shelters in areas of parenting.

I received my BA with a major in Psychology in 1963 from Wayne State University. I got my MA in Clinical Psychology from Oakland University in 1972.

I am a member of the American Psychological Association and the Michigan Psychological Association. I have written pamplets, newspaper articles, and professional journal articles. I have been the Coping With Kids columnist for several newspapers for 26 years, and my columns appear weekly in the Staten Island Advance. I have been the author or co-author of 16 books. My books include, 8 WEEKS to A WELL-BEHAVED CHILD, CHILDREN WHO SAY NO WHEN YOU WANT THEM TO SAY YES, 6 STEPS TO AN EMOTIONALLY INTELLIGENT TEENAGER, and THE FATHERSTYLE ADVANTAGE. My most recent parenting book (2012) is THE EVETYTHING CHILD PSYCHOLOGY AND DEVELOPMENT BOOK. I have appeared on over 180 radio and TV shows related to my books and parenting. For more information about me, my books and columns, go to my website at

I have an M.A. in Clinical Psychology from Oakland University.

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