I'm supposed to be going away for the weekend with DS2 (12). It has been arranged for a long time (about 8 months). It's a break with a lot of other friends - his and mine. We both want to go...
I'd be leaving DS1 (17) home alone. I haven't done that for about 15 months, largely because I haven't felt I could trust him. I have had lots of problems with him this year (as some of you will know) - including college drop-out, drug-taking and a burglary that was carried out by someone who had our key (who was therefore almost certainly one of his friends someone he had invited into our home). However, we have had two very settled months, he is back in college, and he is much happier and better behaved.
On the one hand, it would be good to trust him again... On the other hand, I don't quite...
So, should I go?
And/or are there any things I could do to make me feel like it would be OK to go?
I'm not sure anything anyone says will make you feel relaxed about going, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't go, especially if DS2 is looking forward to it. Have you discussed your expectations and boundaries with DS1? He may rise to the occasion, especially as he is in a better place at the moment. But to be on the safe side I suggest bribery! Have a great time
I think you should go with your younger son, as he is really looking forward to it and seams to want you to go with him, and it dosent seem fair not to do that just because of you other son, even though I can understand why you would be worried.
You do have to start trusting you other son, sometime as well, but I think before you go, you should sit down with him, and agree any consequences for unacceptable behaviour, and be clear and specific as to what that behaviour is. On the flip side, could you agree some rewards for doing what is asked.
If you have family near by and it's appropriate you could ask them to check in, just to make sure he is ok, I don't mean every hour , or anything over the top.
Before you start the discussion, be clear with your son, why you are doing what you are doing what you are doing and praise him for how far he has come,
You can keep it light, but just make sure he knows. Have a great time!
But as a precaution, lock up (preferably in a relative's house) all your valuables, lock your bedroom, leave him only one key, and get someone, anyone, to stick their heads in mid-morning on Saturday to check the house.
And don't tell him you are going for the weekend. On Friday when you head off tell him you are going overnight, you might be back on Saturday evening, but if the weather is nice/you are having a good time/something, whatever, you might stay until Sunday.
Don't discuss bribery, trusting, anything. Just say "I assume the house will still be here when I come back" and go.
You don't want to give him the excuse to say "my mum nagged and nagged so fuck her I'm having a party".
Just my tuppence worth. I left ds1 this summer for two nights (using the above "we might be back" explanation) and was very relieved to find the house still standing when I got back.