Advice from the fairly strict please

(77 Posts)
membershipcard Thu 02-May-13 19:34:28

We keep our booze in a locked cupboard in the dining room . There is tinned food in there too. Tonight we fancied a tin of rice pudding so DS,14, went to look. He was a while so I went to see what he was doing -- he had drank from the Southern Comfort bottle!!!

We don't make alcohol the forbidden fruit, if he'd asked for a taste he would have been allowed. He is allowed the odd drink on special occasions etc.

He asked a couple of days ago if he could sleep over at a friend's house-a female friend who I haven't met and know nothing about. I haven't agreed/not agreed to this yet but he is really hoping I will let him go.

The big question is do I let him go or do I say NO because he deviously drank the SC???

Please help me!

cory Fri 03-May-13 09:09:14

I can't see that it is such a dreadful thing to keep booze in a special place with limited access. Going by my own memories and dd's accounts there is absolutely no correlation between where the booze is kept and how likely it is that it will be taken by teenagers.

The girl who swigged vodka in dd's science class had parents who drank quite a bit and left bottles all over the house. As for the teens who have brought vodka to the last few parties dd has attended, I am not sure where their parents keep the booze but it is clearly in a place where they don't notice it disappearing from.

We have very little booze in the house but I feel sure I can trust dd to stick to the agreed rules. Wouldn't make any difference where it's kept.

And feel equally sure that there are some of her friends that I wouldn't trust an inch if I were their parents.

My parents don't drink at all, dh's parents drank quite a bit and let him taste, we both have a sensible attitude to alcohol: I think it's more about the people we are than about minor circumstances at home.

ivykaty44 Fri 03-May-13 09:13:26

do you lock up the tinned artichokes as well?

ivykaty44 Fri 03-May-13 09:16:47

mixed leep over? Is that what you think will be happening? They will be leeping over each other...

I don't think a boy of 14 is going to be sensible is is not part of their nature, yes they are lovely and they can be very thoughtful and sensible some of the time but I think you are expecting far to much for the poor boy.

Taking a swig of sc is the type of behaviour of a teen

MumnGran Fri 03-May-13 09:19:56

I never locked anything away. It wasn't about being/not being strict, because I was very strict about respecting one another, and other peoples property. However, on sleepovers, I would stay in the room which had the drinks cupboard.....not everyone's DC follow the same rules. smile

As for the sleepover. Its the age and stage - with the huge proviso that you speak directly with the parents hosting to confirm that they will be on site the whole time (and that alcohol won't be permitted, or left lying around to abuse). If I didn't know the parent personally, I would also chat around friends to find someone who does know them .... just to doublecheck that they are responsible people!

DowntonTrout Fri 03-May-13 09:25:55

Just a thought about the "trust" thing. It is one sided on your part, you say you trust him but you lock the cupboard, that is not trust.

You trust him not to have a swig when it suits you but the restof the time, when you are out of the house for example, it is locked away, therefore no trust is in place. That is a very mixed message you are sending.

As for the sleepover, speak to the parents. That is what I would do/ have always done. They know the rule is that if i can speak to the parents and check its all above board, that's fine. No confirmation from parents= no sleepover.

DeepRedBetty Fri 03-May-13 09:29:59

We don't lock the booze, and dtds (14) and their friends don't seem interested. Also I know exactly how much white wine I have at any time... and frankly I'd be delighted if some of the more peculiar bottles of weird southern European liqueurs vanished grin

My dad did keep the cupboard locked, but this was after my little brother and no.3 sister, both preschool in age, used an entire bottle of 18 year old Single Malt in a game in the garden. Apparently they were 'washing stones'. They seem to have tried it, thought it was vile, and must be 'cleaning stuff like Mummy has in the kitchen'. My mother had been busy with no. 4 sister for five minutes.

flow4 Fri 03-May-13 10:16:47

The trouble is, locking up booze is what you do after trust is broken (and I do, because it has). But you locked it up before, so you proved to him you didn't trust him. If he's generally a trustworthy boy, he will have seen that as unfair - he may well have thought I may as well, cos they don't trust me anyway.

It's not a big deal in itself, but you can probably learn from it: if you want him to prove himself trustworthy, you need to give him trust; if you act like he can't be trusted, he'll probably prove you right.

In this situation, I don't think what he's done deserves punishment, but I do think you need a conversation about trust.

The sleepover is a separate issue imo. If you think there's no risk of inappropriate sexual behaviour, talk to the parents and let him go.

Maryz Fri 03-May-13 10:26:29

If you have children you can trust, you don't have to lock up your booze (or your car keys, money, passports and other valuables).

If you have trustworthy children, of course you think others are mad and asking for trouble if they lock up your booze.

My first experience of this was when ds1 had a boy from school for a sleepover. They were 13, and took and drank a bottle of red wine from my kitchen.

I felt really terrible that i hadn't kept a better eye on them. When I told the other mother, she laughed and said "oh, well, they are teenagers now, what do you expect" hmm

That was the day I stopped trusting ds and also stopped trusting his friends' parents. I also started drinking locking up all the alcohol.

Hullygully Fri 03-May-13 14:09:21

Yes Mary, you are right of course. I have two relatively well-behaved easygoing teenagers but that is simply my good fortune. And who knows what the future holds.

I am the strictest mother in the world, according to DS2 who is 15.
I wouldn't let him sleep at a mixed sleepover last week because neither he nor I knew the crowd who were going very well. We picked him up at 11.30. I also didn't let him go to a party where the parents were out and the supervising adult was a big brother.
On the other hand I did allow DS1 to go to several mixed sleepovers when he was 13 and 14. I knew the friends and the parents.
It would never have occurred to me to lock up booze or anything else for that matter. And, like Hully I know I am lucky.
Has he got form for stealing stuff?

Cerisier Fri 03-May-13 15:29:05

We are obviously not the strictest of parents. DD 14 is sitting here watching LOTR and has a can of Budweiser. DH also has one. It is late here though as we're in Asia.

I agree with those saying they'd only lock up the booze after a breach of trust.

Mixed sleepovers- yes if I know the parents and there is an adult in the house.

membershipcard Sun 05-May-13 07:21:08

Just an update...
The sleepover is offsmile I asked for the mums phone number and another parent wanted to go and see the host-mum. And suddenly it was all off, they just going out for something to eat instead. I feel happy that it's off without me saying NO

The booze cupboard s still locked and will remain locked. There is accessible drink around the house. Beers in the fridge, opened wine on the bench etc. my theory is if he drinks what he can find unlocked he will be drunk. But if he drank lots of the stronger, locked up stuff it could be a lot more serious.

Btw...the booze cupboard is known as the 'Christmas cupbard' as that is where I put all the prezzies and Christmas goodies. This is the original reason for having a lock on it.

Mynewmoniker Mon 06-May-13 15:43:37

So the place up the road from me that has thieves locked away...they must be Santa's helpers, mem? grin wink

pixiepoopoo Thu 09-May-13 14:21:22

You lock up rice pudding in a cupboard!!!

mumeeee Thu 09-May-13 20:57:19

Another one here who would never think of locking booze away, We don't have that much generally but always mainly wine and beer. Our children are in their 20's now but when they were teens they would not have taken our alcohol and we always trusted them not to.
I wouldn't have allowed mixed sex sleepovers though.

deleted203 Thu 09-May-13 21:02:11

I don't lock the booze cupboard. But I wouldn't let a 14 yo (of either sex) sleep at a friend of the opposite genders house. Not if it was a person I did not know. And probably not if it was a person I did know, TBH. It is entirely the wrong age for 'mixed sleepovers' IMO.

elmerelephant Tue 14-May-13 22:03:01

I dont lock my alcohol away either, last year my son took a bottle of jack daniels, I told him how upset and disappointed I was that he had taken it, and said that if he wanted to drink we could discuss it.
I still dont lock away my alcohol, because I trust my son.

Talk to your son about the issues surrounding alcohol

cory Wed 15-May-13 08:43:56

I think if this thread shows anything it shows that teens are all different and that you deal with the teen you have, not the teen some other parent has.

I don't lock up alcohol but I do lock up the paracetamol because past experience has shown me that this is where the danger lies for dd. Ds otoh would almost certainly be safe from that danger; if he was our only child I wouldn't lock up anything except possibly the chocolate brownies.

My db got into trouble over alcohol as a teen, not because of any alcoholic tendencies on his own part, but because he was a socially insecure teen who was terrified of losing his place in the gang. Otoh I wouldn't worry about that situation for dd at all, as she has never shown any signs of being easily led.

Explaining the dangers works with some teens, not with others.

I would not lock up my booze, but then I never have much in the house , I can see how loads would be a temptation to a teenager with his friends round. my kids know if they touch my wine or sprits I will be very mad, its mine not theirs, if they want a drink I will give them one, but they are 16 and 19 and only really like beer or cider which I don buy often. As to the sleepover if there is a group and the parents are happy with it I would let him go

Emmy02 Thu 23-May-13 13:32:32

why do you keep a "very full" cupboard of booze? Do you and your DH drink a lot? You are making it tempting for him. Maybe you should keep minimum amount of booze, and not draw attention to it by keeping it locked away and warn your DS you will know if he takes any.

Lifeisontheup Thu 23-May-13 14:21:14

I've never thought of locking my booze cabinet, DS is alone in the house from getting home until one of us gets home from work and I think it would send the message that we don't trust him. He has the occasional can of cider (he's nearly 17) and the older ones have a drink if they want to.
Youngest did try a swig of gin once when we were on holiday which I think put him off spirits for life!
We don't particularly like sweet alcoholic drinks so perhaps that makes them less attractive to teens. I can't imagine many like single malt and I would notice if any of that disappeared.

lulu6867 Fri 24-May-13 15:27:05

Never mind locking the booze why do you lock up the rice pudding?!!

brass Tue 28-May-13 13:04:19

I think if this thread shows anything it shows that teens are all different and that you deal with the teen you have, not the teen some other parent has.

Amen!

tiredaftertwo Wed 29-May-13 09:19:47

Isn't it funny how half the time the thin gs you worry about miraculously fall through as you ask questions? smile

One of my dc has been going to mixed sleepover since early teens - they are a mixed group. Those of you who suggest ringing the host's parents, do you yourselves actually do this? I only ask because I always said I would and then when it came to it it was clear that would provoke massive confrontation at my house, so went for other ways....

mathanxiety Thu 30-May-13 06:01:43

The sleepover was probably planned for the parent's absence and when other parents started sniffing around it got hurriedly cancelled. Someone in your DS's friend group is a bit what my mother would call 'fast'. Or maybe there's more than one individual. Is your DS trying to get in or stay in with a cool group that boasts about drinking? What do you know about his friends?

Personally I have never locked up any booze. I don't know how it has happened but the DCs have so far responded to Hully's sort of talk. DS had one bender that I am aware of when out with friends, and he woke up in the emergency room the next morning with nurses and doctors spinning him stories about running naked around town. Sort of funny to hear him ask did it really happen ...

OTOH, I would never allow a mixed sleepover.

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