He skipped school. Took off and acted like he was going to school. Spent the day with his girlfriend at the gym and then they went to watch a movie at a theatre.
He is a good kid. Really. We don't have issues with him. But, I am angry. He lied and broke my trust. The school called and asked about his call in as it seemed suspicious to them as probably half the Senior class was gone. (A class of 730) Do I cover for him or does he pay the consequences? Should he have a consequence at home too? Am I over reacting? I want to ground him for a week and he will get a detention at school.
"Oh, why do my actions have consequences?" ~ Homer Simpson
"She knew my one weakness: That I'm weak." ~ Homer Simpson
He did it anyway.
IMO not punishing him only justifies his behavior.
"Truth has no special time of its own. Its hour is now - always." - Albert Schweitzer
Me: BW - Him: 200+ # tumor removed 7/09
DS - 31 - Yikes!
Actions and decisions - meet consequences. This is the first of many action/decision points in his life....perhaps a valuable teaching moment, Mom.
As much as it sucks. Been there. Done that.
I was not always the "popular" parent. But my son knew that I said what I meant and I meant what I said.
In our community is was widely forgiven. There was no unusual punishment at school. Some of the teachers who only had senior classes didn't even show. I had no classes to go to, so I hung out with the director of student activities all day.
My mom threatened to take my car if I cut, and I believed her. In my case, I think it was excessive, but that's because the school basically condoned it.
In your case, I don't think you should cover for him at all. He made his choices, and he lied to you. There were clear consequences for all of these things and it's important that he takes responsibility for his actions in all things.
Rock and a hard place for parents. I get it. (((SM)))
Yes, the issue is that you specifically told him no, then he lied to you, disobeyed you, and deceived you. There have to be some kind of consequences.
First, do not cover for him. He needs to accept whatever consequences the school gives (assuming they are not unreasonable like he cannot graduate or something). If that means taking a 0 on a quiz or a test, so be it. His choice, his consequence.
I said no to go to school.
I am assuming he did not tell you that he was not planning to go to school. Did he actually say he would go to school, or did you just assume he would? What I mean, did you honestly and truly think he was going to school and did he tell you he would go to school? Or did you leave it in a limbo state where you said "go to school" but he never said he would and both of you knew he would not? Or did you leave it in a state where he knew you said go to school but he thought you would not care? Or did he flat out tell you that he would not go to school?
I am not trying to split hairs, but I am trying to gauge the level of deception. I think his punishment at home should equal his level of deception.
She told him to go to school. He disobeyed her. He lied to her.
As a parent I do not get into all this "but I thought you meant" hoohah with my teen DS. Arguing or making excuses or "but I thought since you didn't say XYZ" just ups the consequence. Even before my H's A, lying was the number one sin in our house. Even more now, if that's possible.
Sister M, regardless of how the school takes it, whether they are lax or strict, doesn't matter. What matters is what *you* said. Consequences AND a discussion about lying, respect, and being disappointed in his lack of trustworthiness.
Is he going to college where skipping is sooooo easy and self regulating behavior is important?
I expect teenagers and young adults to disobey their parents. I am not saying it is right, I am saying it is expected because we, their parents, have taught them to make their own decisions. So that has to be considered. However, I also believe in "my house, my rules" and disobeying me has consequences.
If he also deceived, well because of where I am at in life and what I have been thru this is a very serious crime. My DD KNOWS that I do not take lying and deception lightly. If she blatantly lied and deceived me then I might take away her access to the car. She would have to ride the bus to school which for her would have a bigger impact than grounding.
And even though I think the senior ditch day is a pretty harmless thing, I wouldn't cover for him with the school. I would never have asked my mom to lie for me (and I don't think she would have). At my high school, it was a pretty well established thing, at least when I went there. I don't remember giving a note or anything for that day - it was just expected that the seniors would be out that day. But I know schools have gotten a lot more strict about attendance since then.
Funny thing is, most seniors made huge plans for that day - going to the beach or something like that. My group of friends and I hadn't made any specific plans, so we just ended up heading to a mall that was in the next state over (but only about 30 minutes away - as close as going to our "local" mall). And while we were there, in the middle of the school day, we ran into... our principal. Yep, what are the chances? We waved, he just shook his head and smiled, and that was the end of it. We thought it was pretty funny that even our principal was ditching on senior ditch day! I was more timid back then. These days, I probably would have teased the principal about needing to give him detention.
So yeah, while I find it hard to take it too seriously, especially if he is a good kid... you made a rule and he broke it. So, I would punish as you see fit if I were you. And if you decide not to punish... you could still let him take the school punishment, and make it clear that you are only giving a one time exception/leniency. I know for our ditch day, my mom made it clear that she didn't care if I skipped, but that if the school punished for it, I would have to live with whatever punishment they gave.
[This message edited by osxgirl at 2:13 PM, April 15th (Tuesday)]
Thanks for all the support in being the uncool mean Mom.
As I say to my DS, I'm not here to be nice. I'm here to be your mom.
As I say to my DS, I'm not here to be nice. I'm here to be your mom.
You triggered a memory for me, though. Our middle son was/is the kid who has to march to the beat of a different drummer. From the moment he was born (colic, only slept in 20 min spurts for about a month) I felt his purpose in life was to drive me insane. Nearly did! When DS got to his tweens, he really put me through it, all through his early 20's actually. Gosh, I had to be the Mom & Dad (FWH was checked out....won't go there) and middle son hated me. HATED ME! Told me, wrote about it in notebooks/journals (yeah, I read it, had to).
Following yet another "incident" of some sort, I had to go pick him and 2 girls up somewhere. I was very angry with son, but I talked calmly to all of them about what was going on, pointing out better ways to have handled the situation and letting them know they made some bad choices and there was a price to pay. DS was pissed and embarrassed.
They were all about 15-16 y.o. at the time. Later on after I had dropped the girls off and got home I found a note in the back seat. It was from one of the girls. It said:
I (heart) U DS's Mom
No Matter What DS says (shhhhh) You Are the Coolest Mom Ever! x
You see, Kayla had what every kid thought was the coolest parents evah! They didn't give a shit what Kayla did. She could do whatever she wanted. They just didn't care. Our DS knew I cared and could always count on me. Not because I would bail them out, but because I cared. Even though there was always consequences, at least for my kid, he knew he could always call me.
[This message edited by SisterMilkshake at 11:41 AM, April 17th (Thursday)]