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to think a parent should offer to pay for damage their child has done?

(38 Posts)
ballstoit Mon 19-Aug-13 22:40:26

A friend visited yesterday with her DC. While my friend and I were washing up, friend's ds (10), damaged something in my living room. Don't want to say what exactly, in case of being outed, but something like ripping off wallpaper. Wasn't an accident and he has no special needs that I know of.

Friend was mortified, and left shortly afterwards. She didn't offer to repair or pay for replacement, and I haven't heard from her since.

AIBU to expect her to offer to pay? Doubt I actually accept or charge full costs (would be £100+), but surely the offer should be made.

Fakebook Wed 21-Aug-13 10:32:30

Maybe she doesn't realise how much the damage costs? If its something similar to ripping wallpaper, I wouldn't have even thought that would cost £100 to fix so wouldn't have offered to pay.

SilverApples Wed 21-Aug-13 10:29:31

I just wouldn't have him back in the house. Meet elsewhere or just friend, no DC.
And I'd explain why if I had to.

chesterberry Wed 21-Aug-13 10:19:54

YANBU to expect her to offer considering it wasn't an accident and her child is 10 years old. That said, if she really is skint it might be that she genuinely cannot afford the £100 and was terrified that if she offered you would take her up on it. If you're struggling to make ends meet £100 would be a lot of money to fork out, she may be feeling terrible about not offering but feel like she really isn't able to.

That said, if it was my DC who had done aged 10 that I would be expecting them to make some sacrifices in order to help pay for the damage, although obviously that only works if she has enough money to give him pocket money or something similar he could give up to pay for the purposeful damage.

WafflyVersatile Tue 20-Aug-13 23:44:39

Maybe she couldn't risk offering to pay in case you said yes?

As someone said, skint and too embarrassed to contact you without being able to offer.

BlehPukeVomit Tue 20-Aug-13 23:37:05

The fact you have not heard from her says it all sad

IwishIwasmoreorganised Tue 20-Aug-13 23:17:12

YANBU. When ds2 damaged a window at a friends house I paid in full for its repair.

ballstoit Tue 20-Aug-13 23:14:55

Still no word from my 'friend' sad

I can't claim on insurance as it's a rented house, and the damage is to part of the house owned by the landlord. Plus, wouldn't want to lose no claims, as would only get about £50 after xs covered.

I don't feel I can chase for a contribution, particularly as not even heard from her since.

ReallyTired Tue 20-Aug-13 20:36:58

" a small item, yes you would replace - but that again is dependent on finances. A larger item, your insurance should cover it BUT perhaps a contribution to the excess on the policy."

If you claim for damage for decoration on insurance then the insurance company would expect the police to press charges as the damage was done on purpose. It seems a little harsh for a ten year old child to have a criminal record for trashing wallpaper.

"Phone her and offer to let her DS do some work for you to cover the cost of what he broke/ damaged. Cut the lawn, paint the fence etc. He did the damage not her and he's old enough to know better."

A ten year old might make the lawn or a fence look awful. Even if the child has the best of intentions they may be incapable of doing a decent job. Prehaps the ten year old could be made to clean, but since the child has behavioural problems, even that might be beyond him.

Lilacroses Tue 20-Aug-13 20:34:55

Wow, actually the fact that her Ds did not apologise (and wasn't told to do so?) is more shocking to me than her not offering to pay. I can understand being so embarrassed and mortified that you might just apologise and then leave but not making your child apologise or contacting you later to reiterate how sorry you are/making some offer of recompense is really poor. We used to have friends with 2 kids that were incredibly destructive like that, I am so glad we no longer see them.

waltzingmathilda Tue 20-Aug-13 20:23:27

I'm swinging both ways on this .... a small item, yes you would replace - but that again is dependent on finances. A larger item, your insurance should cover it BUT perhaps a contribution to the excess on the policy.

BrokenSunglasses Tue 20-Aug-13 20:18:56

She should have offered. Even if she can't really afford it, she should have said something that indicates that she accepts the financial responsibility is hers.

She's rude.

Justforlaughs Tue 20-Aug-13 20:18:31

Phone her and offer to let her DS do some work for you to cover the cost of what he broke/ damaged. Cut the lawn, paint the fence etc. He did the damage not her and he's old enough to know better.

purpleloosestrife Tue 20-Aug-13 20:14:06

If she did not make her child apologise - then IMHO this was extremely bad parenting.

Genuine accidents/or illness aside, 10y is not 2yo, and at 10 a child should be old enough to understand not to deliberately cause damage. It is incredibly rude to think that you will pay for her child's misbehaviour. I wouldn't think of someone like that to be my friend TBH.

AaDB Mon 19-Aug-13 23:48:34

She may be so morto that she just wanted out of there so she could bollock her lo properly.

She may also be so broke that she can't afford a polite offer to pay to fix the damage.

If she is your good friend, I'd pay but would chat to her before the next visit. I would state what a pita this is and that you cannot afford to pay for any further damage. I'd then call bygones. If it happened again I'd never meet at my house with her DC in tow.

EldritchCleavage Mon 19-Aug-13 23:47:12

But if she is really skint then she could at least write a note to say she simply can't afford to pay for it but is desperately sorry.

DeWe Mon 19-Aug-13 23:40:31

I know it would have been nice for her to offer to pay (and I would myself).
But if she hasn't the money, then offering it, knowing you would refuse because she can't afford it, or knowing that if you accept she would have to say "sorry I can't afford it" seems empty to me.

I think I'd feel more irritated by someone who offered to pay knowing that they wouldn't be able to.

smearedinfood Mon 19-Aug-13 23:13:29

Skint and embarrassed I'd say.

MintyChops Mon 19-Aug-13 23:13:22

She should definitely have offered to pay, so rude and very frustrating for you.

BlehPukeVomit Mon 19-Aug-13 23:11:42


What happens if she goes and buys something non essential next week (or whenever...) Will you be thinking to yourself that she should have used the money to pay you back or will you genuinely be able to 'forget' about the damage her son has deliberately done to your property.?????

It might be best for your friendship if you are honest with her by nicely telling her that you thought she should offer to pay for the damage her son did.

Is the damage something she could help you repair/paint/clean? Perhaps you could ask her to come over to help sort it out???

ReallyTired Mon 19-Aug-13 23:04:02

"She is skint, and I doubt I'd accept the offer. But I think I would feel less hacked off now if it had been made."

Friendship has to go both ways. If her child trashes your decoration then she should find a way of making amends. If she is short of money then prehaps some of the ten year old's toys could be sold to pay towards the damage. The ten year old sounds throughly spoilt and needs to be taught a lesson.

Lack of money is not an excuse for poor behaviour or frankly bad parenting.

yoniwherethesundontshine Mon 19-Aug-13 22:58:45

I think as she is skint the important thing here is that she did obviously feel bad.

Maybe she did panic and want to offer to pay for the damager but literally wouldn't be able to feed the dc if she did...or had to make other cut backs...

I have known quite a few dc to ruin my dc toys, the DM has seen it or watched it even and not batted an eye lid, or, been quite casual about it. Same with their DC physically and deliberately hurting my DC. Not batted an eye lid.

So for me, just that she felt bad would have been some salve for me!

ballstoit Mon 19-Aug-13 22:56:02

I will be meeting her outside of my house in future I think, or without the DC.

I would be very uncomfortable asking for money from her, and think that would end the friendship sad

BlehPukeVomit Mon 19-Aug-13 22:53:29

If she is skint you could offer to go halves AND for her to pay by instalment.

I wouldn't invite her over again either. grin

everlong Mon 19-Aug-13 22:53:13

She probably feels awful. She's skint so presumably couldn't offer to pay.

fieldfare Mon 19-Aug-13 22:53:10

She should definitely offer to pay and should have got him to apologise too.

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