Mum & Dad - 1, Teenage daughter - nil

(19 Posts)
MrsBright Sat 14-Dec-13 21:01:37

Thank you to all the people here who gave me wise advice about how not to get drawn into never-ending 'getting nowhere here' escalating arguments with 13 yr old daughter ......

This morning, despite being told very clearly not to, she was caught using her mobile whilst in the bath. Phone taken away. Daughter gets out of bath and stands stark naked in the hallway screeching at me trying make the argument as complicated and all-involving as possible. I stood my ground, told her to get back in the bath despite the aggressive 'I NEED my phone' right in my face. On me threatening to remove all privileges until after Christmas (quietly on my part, and with a countdown 1-to-10) unless she got back in the bath right now, she actually did.

Punishment - not for taking her phone into the bathroom, but aggressively arguing/being defiant when caught - nice new mobile taken away, substituted with crappy old phone with no internet access until next Saturday - daughter naturally furious.

An hour later she apologized and has accepted the punishment.

Success. Mum & Dad in control, not her.

Thanks everyone!

SirChenjin Sat 14-Dec-13 21:09:24

Good for you! smile

We had a big clampdown recently - the behaviour (and language from DS1) had been slipping, so we had a family meeting and said that any further nonsense would result in loss of phones for 24 hours. They rolled their eyes, looked bored, and went on their merry ways. 2 misdemeanours later each plus 4 removal of phone privileges and they appear to have understood Mum and Dad mean Business. Ha!

wintersdawn Sat 14-Dec-13 21:09:40

Well done smile

mathanxiety Sat 14-Dec-13 21:50:05

Well done!

Never address the specific details or the cause of an argument or blow up once a teen has been warned once. It's the tone and volume, aggression and defiance that you need to clamp down on. That keeps the conversation on your firm ground and not derailed into their justifications for defiance (teens always have a lot of these lined up and it is best to completely ignore).

It also means, when they do have a beef about rules, they have been taught (hopefully) to deal with you using their indoor voices and proper social skills.

Palika Sat 14-Dec-13 23:05:46

Great!! We need more posts like this!!

MiniMonty Sun 15-Dec-13 02:50:57

Tread carefully....
If they can't freak out and blow off steam at home they WILL do it elsewhere...

Teenagers are fabulous, dangerous, incredible, formidable, shocking, arrested if you're not very careful about letting them blow off steam.
Especially boys.
Girls become coy at 16, boys go ape and go far.
Evolution requires this. Modern society hates it but it's gonna happen...

Have you forgotten what it is to be 13 / 15 / 19 and to still live live with your Mum ?
A Horrid nightmare !

So tread carefully I say and don't expect that you will manage the teens in your care. But ready to catch them when they fall (once) and be ready then to teach that last and most important lesson which is "I will never catch you again - so tread carefully".

mathanxiety Sun 15-Dec-13 03:51:32

I don't think that's really true.

Everyone is capable of being reasonable and civil, even mums, and even teenagers.

You are teaching them to be civil just as you are teaching smaller children to use their words. Just because a teenager or anyone else for that matter feels strongly about something doesn't mean they can blow up, screech, rant, sulk or refuse to discuss reasonably.

And I think it's a very bad idea to teach boys especially that home is the place where they can dump on their nearest and dearest without consequences.

SirChenjin Sun 15-Dec-13 09:00:36

I disagree Mini. Just because they are teenagers doesn't mean that they can go around swearing in front of their 6 year old brother (as per DS1) or lashing out, shouting and slamming doors on a regular basis- without any form of consequence. They have to learn to be respectful, kind, tolerant and accepting of others, and that won't happen if they get a free rein to 'blow off steam' at home whenever the mood takes them.

Yama Netherlands Sun 15-Dec-13 09:07:43

I also disagree with Mini. I do not recognise my brothers or myself in your description of teenagers.

MrsBright Sun 15-Dec-13 10:36:41

Ditto.

In the 'cooled down' discussion DD and I had later, I explained WHY she can't explode when things go against her and pointed out that for the rest of her life there will be times when she has to do things she doesn't want to do. And although you may be livid inside, you swallow hard and accept it. Because that is what*adult life*demands of you. It's called maturity.

mumeeee Sun 15-Dec-13 12:17:17

Another one who disagrees with mini. I have 3 DDs now in their 20's so have had a lot of experience with Teenagers and I also have teenage nephews.

NoComet Sun 15-Dec-13 12:33:07

I'm very lucky, DD1(almost 16) thinks falling out with your parents is a stupid waste of time, as is most things teens worry about. She finds most of her peers a weird alien species grin

DD2(almost 13), does do the teen bit a little. Has a gang of mates and has had a BF, but..

1) I reminder her laptop fits the lockable draw of DHs filling cabinet.

2) We live in the middle of nowhere. If you swear at the taxi driver, they go on strike.

3) DFs DM also helped the other day by friend missing a late finish club because she's missed the school bus.

Never does any harm for teens to see other parents mean it too!

Thants Sun 15-Dec-13 12:43:29

Meh seems harsh. Why can't she have her phone in the bath? I take mine in!

snozzlemaid Sun 15-Dec-13 13:05:10

Presumably because her parents have spent a lot of money on it and it could easily be ruined if dropped.

SirChenjin Sun 15-Dec-13 13:29:57

What Snozzle said. Presumably her DD doesn't have an income to buy another one if she dropped it in the bath, and presumably the OP doesn't want to have endless arguments about why she couldn't have another phone if she she dropped it.

specialsubject Sun 15-Dec-13 14:02:50

because thants if you drop the phone in the bath YOU will pay for the new one.

why on earth do you want a phone in a bath? Take a cheap paperback like the rest of us?

BackforGood Sun 15-Dec-13 14:18:14

I disagree with Mini too.
You did absolutely the right thing.
Personally, I don't mind my ds taking his phone into the bath - he drowns it, then he is the one without a phone, IMO, but that's not the point of the argument. The point is, the rule was there, and the dd needs to learn how to respond to it - maybe negotiating to change it if she wants, but not by shrieking and screaming.

MrsBright Sun 15-Dec-13 15:21:39

The reason for 'no phone in bath' is simple - she takes literally 2 hours to have a bath if she's got it with her. Neither I nor the Water Board are prepared to tolerate that.

NoComet Sun 15-Dec-13 15:48:20

I have been known to take 3hrs with a good tatty paperback and DH has teased me ever since.

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