Helicopter parenting in workplace

(36 Posts)
Chyelabinsk Sat 16-Feb-13 09:03:08

Following on from the thread about parents expecting school rules to be bent for the DCs, I currently have a situation & wondered how you would all handle it?

My workplace has a work experience student, however his mother is very interfering. She rings up to discuss things, rather than letting the student organise themselves. This hasn't left a very good impression & I am considering giving the student some feedback on life after school. I am concerned the young man's mother will continue to interfere at University & full time work.

Would you say anything to the student & if so, how would you go about it?

Rhiannon86 Sat 16-Feb-13 09:04:50

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BoringSchoolChoiceNickname Sat 16-Feb-13 09:11:26

Yes sure, you'll presumably never meet them again so there's no harm in saying gently "I noticed your mum got quite involved in making arrangements. You should try to avoid that when you go to Uni because it doesn't give a very good impression of your abilities and self-reliance." (That's not really gentle enough, I'm sure you can do better).

HecateWhoopass Sat 16-Feb-13 09:13:37

i would leave it in the feedback. The school needs to help the children to understand the workplace. This is clearly something they need to be telling them about.

lljkk Sat 16-Feb-13 09:14:33

Yes I would say something. How much depends on his age. If 18+ I'd be fairly direct.

Theas18 Sat 16-Feb-13 09:14:34

Definitely say something.he'll probably go"yeah I know" :-)

Sokmonsta Sat 16-Feb-13 09:15:15

Is this trident work experience, so about 15?

Even so, I would still have a chat with them about their future, maybe what their plans are and how you found going it alone. Kind of make it a bit lighthearted that you were glad when you parents stopped butting in and trying to organise you.

Either way it needs nipping in the bud or there will be yet another grown adult who runs to mummy whenever something goes slightly wrong. <voice of bitter experience>

Chyelabinsk Sat 16-Feb-13 09:27:16

The student is 16 & into their final year of school so they are already looking at which Universities & courses they want to apply.
Thanks for your feedback so far. I do know for example that the student has passed on my direct (work) land line number to their mother as she has been leaving me voicemails!
I had been trying to give him benefit of the doubt & assume that he didn't want his Mum interfering.

HollyBerryBush Sat 16-Feb-13 09:30:12

If it is arranged by the school, I think you should be channelling feed back in that direction too

ll31 Sat 16-Feb-13 09:38:25

I'd def have chat, maybe put it like you'd similar experience yourself and how you addressed it, just so he knows he's not alone. ..even tho you prov didn't't! poor guy. .

Floggingmolly Sat 16-Feb-13 09:38:56

You could fairly reasonably decline to discuss his work experience with his mother? Your lines of contact are surely the school and the student himself.
If you'd actually employed him would you feel any less responsibility towards keeping his mum in the loop?

ChristmasJubilee Sat 16-Feb-13 09:49:00

I would either speak to the school or put it in his feedback. My ds1 has s/n and did a work placement when he was 15. I dropped him off each morning and picked him up at night and that was my input. Any problems (and they were few) were included in his feedback.

I would tell his mother you are unable to discuss her son with her as it would be a breach of his confidentiality and if she has a problem she should contact the school. They will be well used to her.

gasman Sat 16-Feb-13 10:29:49

You have my sympathy. I had a work experience pupil this week who was very hard work. No chat, no interest however I'd have been mortified if their mother had run up!

Footface Sat 16-Feb-13 10:36:05

We had an apprentice my work so even older who phoned to complain that her daughter had been told off. I told her that I was not prepared to disscuss x's work with anyone other than x herself

I would be very direct about this. At 16 he could be out working in the world anyway- will his mum still be ringing up when he has a real job?? Tell him that he is now an adult as far as the world of work goes and you will only discuss his work with him and if required with the school if a report needs to be made to them.
Point out as others have said that when he is at uni or in a real job any uni tutor or employer will be telling his mum where to go and that it reflects badly on his own ability to be responsible for himself.

Tryharder Sat 16-Feb-13 11:26:59

His mum is actually ringing his workplace? What does she want to know? I can't believe she would so this. How embarrassing for the student in question.

bruffin Sat 16-Feb-13 11:30:54

My Ds hsh worked p/t from 16. He was told in no uncertain terms that they do not talk to parents unless there are extenuating circumstances. He has to sort out everything himself.

WilsonFrickett Sat 16-Feb-13 11:35:36

Oh that poor boy, what a mortification! I had a Saturday job from age 14 and my mother would never have got involved with my work arrangements - even when I had a problem with wages and really wanted her too!

I think you can reasonably have a word with him about passing on your number. That's not really on but he probably doesn't realise it, IYSWIM.

Chyelabinsk Sat 16-Feb-13 11:45:05

Thanks everyone.
I'd prefer to avoid the direct / blunt approach, so will bring up in conversation somehow.
tryharder yes, she rang wanting to "organise things" even though I had already spoken to the student over the phone & gave them my number for them to ring me if they had any more questions.
bruffin - I think I will do that next time we have a work experience student. I didn't think to tell him I don't speak to parents as this has never happened before, all the other students organised things themselves & didn't get their parents involved.

CloudsAndTrees Sat 16-Feb-13 11:47:45

What sort of things is she phoning to discuss?

If her son is a slacker and she's phoning to ask if he arrived on time and if he has caused any problems so that she can give him a hard time if needs be, I'd give her some slack.

If she's phoning to check her little diddums is warm enough or to complain that he's bored, then simply ignore her voicemails or if you do have to speak to her, tell her you will communicate with your student and his school, no one else.

CloudsAndTrees Sat 16-Feb-13 11:48:42

Cross posted!

What on earth does she need to organise? confused

Chyelabinsk Sat 16-Feb-13 12:12:34

clouds don't want to go into detail about what she wanted to organise in case it identifies me but I had it in hand with the student, absolutely no need for her to get involved.

ruledbyheart Sat 16-Feb-13 12:16:59

My DP is 26 and his mum still trys to do this, she phoned up one of his ex employers to see if they would take him on again as he was desperate for work (he wasn't and was currently employed) and also told rang his new boss to see how well dp had got on on his first day hmm he wonders why I don't like her.

Not always the students fault sometimes people have toxic family who can't keep their noses out.

ENormaSnob Sat 16-Feb-13 12:36:31

shock this definitely needs broaching.

I would be cross that he's given your personal work number to his mum in the first place tbh.

Chyelabinsk Sat 16-Feb-13 12:47:54

ruledbyheart your DP's situation is exactly why I was trying to give the student the benefit of the doubt. However, unlike your DP's case, this student seems to have handed responsibility over to his DM.

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