a child sent home at 11pm?(42 Posts)
I have had a crash course in parenting teenagers since we took over the full care of DP's nephew in September, he's 13. He went out yesterday to play football with his friends, including one who is his best friend at school. We haven't met him but his form teacher told me he was a nice kid. DN won't bring anyone home. So plenty of time before he was due back he called to ask if he could stay over at this friends house. I said yes, if they were definitely going to be in the house, absolutely no going out and I must speak to the father (no mother around). THe father called us back and spoke to DP, rambling a bit, said there were 6 kids there all playing xbox. We said our rules were he had to be in.
DN turned up at the house at 11pm saying the dad had said he felt ill and kicked them out.
We live in north london. He came home on the bus (not far).
I'm pretty furious - surely this isn't normal?
I would think a phone call to ask you to pick him up would be more appropriate. Chucking him out on the street at that time of night is not on.
A phone call to explain father felt ill and could you collect would have been more appropriate
Huffy although we would have gone out to get him of course we don't have a car so it would have taken DP about half an hour to get there by bus or to call a taxi etc. I get the impression they were pretty much thrown out.
We haven't spoken to DN about it yet although he was completely unworried when he came in. His phone was out of charge unfortunately. The bit that most annoys me is that we didn't even know he had left and was on the bus. At the very least we could have met him from the bus stop. Our area is a bit lively on a Saturday night.
Bunbaker yes, I think I do. Or stoned. DP gave him the benefit of the doubt on the phone and said he thought he was a bit dim.
We are trying to move out of London by the way.
Either the father completely lost his patience with them over something or he was pissed. Either way, really really not on. I'd be hopping mad.
No, YANBU! Does DN have a mobile phone yet? Maybe now is the time to consider getting him one then he can call you for a lift home. Having said that, it was irresponsible of the father to chuck him out on the street that late at night, especially as you had stated your rules.
Chucking him out on the street like that was not on at all. If something had happened, you wouldn't have a clue that he wasn't safe and sound at his friend's. A phone call to ask you.to pick him up would be the very least I'd expect as reasonable.
DN has a phone but it was dead. I didn't know this till he called me and said he didn't have much battery left so needed to know if he was allowed to stay. That's when we agreed the dad would call us. Next time we'll have to check it's fully charged.
I'd be furious but it is not the kids' fault. Id be a bit after the phone call I think. careful or it will be you with 6 kids playing xbox in your house at 11pm... I wouldn't have that, so that might be a clue
You should perhaps get your DN to bring kids to your house before he is allowed to stay at theirs if you have no clue about the state of the parents.
Still, no damage done, and you can learn a lot from this
Adagoo he refuses to bring his friends here even though we gave him a big bedroom with plenty of room and said they were always welcome. It has a lot to do with the fact that he affects a bizarre accent at school. He is a very middle class kid doing his best to fit in at a school in an area where lots of people go private (Tony Blair included
Ok well still think the dad should have called you. At least you'd have known he was on the way home then and could look out fir him. What if something had happened? You wouldn't know cos you'd assume he was safely round his mates. The dad should have called to let you know whether you could pick him up or not. At least your dn wasn't worried.
YANBU to be furious about him getting thrown out at 11pm BUT .... you let your nephew go and stay at a house with people who you had never met before - how do you even know it was the friend's father you spoke to? Did you know the address?
Why will your nephew not bring anyone back to his/your house? Actually that is probably just teenage angst! Maybe encourage him to bring friends back; he maybe feels in some way that he is not allowed to do this.
Anyway, hope all goes well with the 'crash course'!
Mamateur, I would also be really angry at being kicked out at that time and yes, I'd probably make sure that you check out where he's going before he goes
All children in London put on 'that' accent by the way - I'm fairly sure none of their parents actually speak like that
He should have called you to pick the boy up.
lesson learned....don't let him go there again.
Is there a chance he left of his own accord? I can remember doing similar things myself as a teenager...just a thought. I remember a party got cancelled once and had to come back as the boys parents returned from holidays!! I think I told my parents it was a sleepover. Think I was 13/14 and well into my booze.
Huffy absolutely, especially since he had our mobile number from our call a few hours earlier.
This happened to a friend of DS's once; DS insisted he was free to stay at the party but we mortified him by insisting we picked him up. His friend refused the offer of a lift as he was expecting to sleep over after the girl's party.
Turned out the mother did exactly the same thing - turfed a load of 14yos out on the street. Luckily DH was going anyway to pick up DS so brought both boys home.
I think it's not that uncommon - sadly symptomatic of the short fuse some people have where teens are concerned. Outrageous that you'd spoken to the dad and he'd agreed to it though.
Don't even know if it's worth doing anything about it - the guy's not likely to change. Just be aware in future.
Are you sure it was the father you spoke to?
Couldn't your dn have used one of his mates phones to give you a call?
Maybe suggest that to him in future if his phone is out of credit/battery etc. And always get him to check his phone before he goes out especially if there is any chance that he might be staying out.
Does your dn carry a bag around with him? There's an emergency battery gizmo you can get from maplins for a couple of quid that is basically an AA battery in a holder and a connector for lots of different phones. So small to carry around with him if he lugs a bag around anyway and gives an emergency hour of extra talk time.
Also sounds like time for a lesson on using old fashioned payphones and always keeping a spare -
2p 20p (? Just realised I have no idea any more what minimum charge is ) coin on him in case this happens again. Or how to reverse charges in an emergency. Or even an agreed local taxi company or deal that if he goes to taxi place and gets them to ring you to agree payment when he gets home or a couple of other 'just in case this sort of thing happens again' sort of strategies...
Still your dn did well to get home ok, how does he feel about it now he's had a chance to mull over it? He might also have some good ideas of what could happen in this sort of situation that if he has been involved in working out what to do. Even if it is that he and a friend travel together to one of their houses and you are happy to help other kid back safely...
It's really tough with teenagers as you don't have anything like the amount of information or control as you do when they're little - quite right obviously as they have to grow up - but yes, a learning curve as a parent. This thread has made me think, as my two often now stay over at the houses of people I haven't met. I think it's inevitable as they get older.
Many useful suggestions have already been made. I would just add that I have found it helpful to have the mobile numbers of DC's closest friends and of their parents, to cover the inevitable times when their mobiles are forgotten or out of battery, so that there is always someone you can contact to find out what's going on.
If DN was told to leave without being given an opportunity to let you know and make suitable arrangements because the father was ill, YANBU.
Is it possible that DN behaved so badly that he was told to leave? If he'd been so offensive as to make himself unwelcome then that's his lookout, isn't it?
Don't know about out of battery, but isn't there an emergency number 0800 reverse? God only knows what that costs. I'd be well vexed about that situation, totally irresponsible. Does this 'Dad' not read/watch/hear the news? Would he do it to girls? Boys are actually more vulnerable on the streets.
Mamateur, can I just salute you. Being responsible for a teenager is really hard, watching them becoming independent in a unpredictable world is scary, and encountering a parent who has effectively put your child in a risky situation is shocking. All you can do is make sure you know where your DN is, door number and postcode, phone is fully charged, and that he knows how much you care about his safety. And that no matter how bad he thinks things are, that he can always talk to you.
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