If I have stress, I can feel it in my hips immediately! It hurts so incredibly bad when I am stressed out! With a teenager in the house, there is stress! If he only didn't feel he knew everything!
What I try to do NOW
is let him muddle through and figure things out for himself. In the past, I hovered. I pulled him through all his trials and of course supported him. I let him know I am here but to get through it...or don't. (school) Now I'm scared stiff he'll mess up his future without my egging him forward!
He is a nice boy but has zero ambition and no work ethic! Additionally he is sort of whiney for 17!
Yes, stress will increase the pain.
What has happened to make you feel so afraid of your son's life?
I have a theory about teens. They have to "know it all". Nature builds this in so they can approach adulthood secure with what they know, whether we see that knowledge as true, worthwhile, or a potential mistake. Notice, this is regardless of what their parents know.
If young adults did not have their "know-it-all" circuit, they could never move away, get jobs, live in difficult circumstances, or feed themselves. They would be too insecure and too afraid to step out into the world on their own. Doing so would be overwhelming.
Often, know it all teens are right, within the segment of society they spend the bulk of their time.
Young adults must deal with the world they see, not the world their parents see. There may be times the two are in sync but parents miss those times, focusing on what they believe are discrepancies, instead.
Pushing people to achieve often pushes them past their own limits. That might be satisfying for those doing pushing, but a miserable adult is usually the result - they cannot sustain the level of "achievement" on their own and no adult can live with that kind of pressure and disappointment, with themselves, in their lives and remain healthy.
While this might be scary for you, and I have no clue why it's so scary, he'll still have a life, as long as he isn't made to feel that his life is or will be worthless. Pushing often makes the person being pushed feel worthless, and drains them of hope.
They need those qualities left intact to be functioning adults.
Remember, your son is not an extension of you. Wanting things "for" him will not work and he'll still have a life, even if it is not the life you had envisioned before he was a real person.
I suggest turning your energy toward those things you can accomplish for yourself, and allow your son to plot out his own future. At 17, he needs to hear his own voice and his own thoughts guiding him. No matter what, things will get better when you let go of the fear that increases your pain.