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aibu to be angry at 15yo dd school for not alerting me that dd was planning on staying with a 26 male near stranger in his flat overnight which she told all of this to a teacher?

(45 Posts)
trampsypantsy Sun 23-Feb-14 10:44:52

I've been fuming over this for a week but basically my 15yo daughter has been going Off the rails recently since her grandfather who she was very close to died. I've been trying to get her to see a therapist about it but she refuses. So I was tidying her room for her as she was having a particularly sad day, and under her pillow i found a large, half drunk bottle of vodka. This all happened last week when she was at school. I rang her during her lunchtime to give her a chance to explain herself and to tell her to come home straight from school as we needed to have a chat about this. She got very angry with me on the phone and refused to come home that night, she said she wouldn't be getting the bus home and would make sure I wouldn't know where she was. Turns out she was then quite upset and told her head of year teacher about the situation. She also told the teacher that she would be spending the night at a man's flat who is 26, who she had spoken to in a cafe last week and he said she could stay whenever she liked. My dd's friend heard and got her to sleep at her house instead, but this was apparently very last minute and the teacher was still under the impression she was staying with this male stranger. A week later the mother who's house my dd stayed at rang me to tell me her dd only just told her that my dd was planning on staying with this man who I didn't even know existed. Of course it is not the teachers fault for my dd deciding to stay there, but aren't they legally bound to tell parents if their child is in a potentially dangerous situation?

brettgirl2 Sun 23-Feb-14 10:47:42

No the teachers responsibility is to report it to whoever is responsible in the school for child protection. They then decide what to do.

Nanny0gg Sun 23-Feb-14 10:50:51

I don't know the answer to your question - I think you need to make an appointment with the school as soon as possible to address the whole situation regarding your DD's unhappiness and attitudes. There are many agencies they can call on to help.

However - why on earth did you ring her at lunchtime to warn her that you needed to 'chat'? Of course she would be upset, for a number of reasons and look to any option to avoid coming home.
And confrontation will not work in this sad situation. Your DD is also lucky to have such a sensible and caring friend.

FunkyBoldRibena Sun 23-Feb-14 10:52:03

Yes, they should have told the safeguarding person who would decide what needs to be done.

MothratheMighty Sun 23-Feb-14 11:03:52

They should have told the safeguarding person, not the parents. She could have been fleeing an abusive situation at home.
But I think the teacher made an error of judgement. Unless she has disclosed it to the correct people, and the situation is now being monitored by the school and others.
How far off 16 is your DD?

trampsypantsy Sun 23-Feb-14 11:04:05

I know I shouldn't have rung her with hindsight, it just seemed like a good idea at the time as she usually stops off at the shops or whatever Ron her way home, adding on an extra half hour doing whatever she does. I had to go out that evening so needed her to be back ASAP so we could have a proper chat before I had to rush out

trampsypantsy Sun 23-Feb-14 11:05:15

And she's 16 in April, would that make any difference? She's still in high school and legally a child

Nanny0gg Sun 23-Feb-14 11:10:56

I had to go out that evening so needed her to be back ASAP so we could have a proper chat before I had to rush out

With respect, unless you had to go to work, what was so important that you couldn't put off? If you had to rush out there would have been no time for a proper talk anyway.

Sorry OP, I know you must be really worried, but calm down now. Ring the school tomorrow to make an urgent appointment to speak to form tutor and Head of Year (say what it's about so they can be prepared with the facts).

Can you have a (difficult I know) relaxed day with your DD so that she might start to open up to you? Can you tell her that you are worried about her and want to help?

Diamondsareagirls Sun 23-Feb-14 11:13:41

No, OP turning from 15 to 16 won't make any difference. Like other posters have said the head of year will have made a referral of some kind to whoever is in charge of CP in the school. I would contact your dd's head of year to discuss the ongoing situation so they know you are supportive of getting your dd some help. They won't have made contact with you yet as they don't know if she is behaving like this as a result of something she is trying to escape at home.

PikaAchooo Sun 23-Feb-14 11:14:16

I went off the rails entirely at about 13.

As you have been told they aren't obliged to inform you but I do suggest that on the quiet you arrange to have a chat with the school just to let them know you have a few concerns. It means they can keep a bit of a closer eye on your DD and provide additional support if it's needed. Your DD doesn't need to know you have done this.

Have you had a chance to sit down with your daughter to discuss the situation properly? FWIW I think one of the worst things you could do right now is treat her like a child. Maybe suggest the two of you going out for dinner or something and have a chat with her without telling her what to do. The fact of the matter is there is very little you can do when they are at this age. I used to disappear for days at a time, my parents phoned the police but the police couldn't force me to go home, I was safe and happy where I was.

trampsypantsy Sun 23-Feb-14 11:21:24

In response to nanny, it was my other dc parents evening

PandaFeet Sun 23-Feb-14 11:22:12

Ringing her at school was very confrontational and its no wonder she didn't want to come home after than.

She's grieving for her granddad. Her drinking, staying with strangers etc is all acting out in a cry for help.

I think that you can go into the school, you can go through her for drinking and you can punish her for it all, but all that is going to do is further alienate her and push her away.

She needs to be able to come to you. You need to meet this behaviour with calm confidence and love.

trampsypantsy Sun 23-Feb-14 11:26:58

Easier said than done panda, what exactly do you mean? As in I don't speak to her about the drinking, or I do but let her know she's not in trouble for doing this? I'm doing my very best and with hindsight I know I shouldn't have called her at school, but it just seemed like the right thing to do at the time

balia Sun 23-Feb-14 11:29:13

I would want to be very certain about what the teacher was actually told before getting caught up in what that teacher should or shouldn't have done.

bragmatic Sun 23-Feb-14 11:32:16

The teacher should have acted on it, without question. I can't believe the focus is on you, and the timing of your call.

A schoolgirl met a man in a cafe, who invited her to stay overnight at his house, FFS. No good can come of that.

brettgirl2 Sun 23-Feb-14 11:35:37

I think the 15/16 thing does make a big difference as 16 is the age of consent. There is nothing wrong in law with a 16 year old having an older boyfriend.

PandaFeet Sun 23-Feb-14 11:36:07

Do you talk about her granddad? I am sure you are upset about it too, do you let her see that?

Just talk to her. Tell her that you are worried. That you want her to come to you if she's upset, not turn to drink.

Its very easy to immediately go to a punishment when our kids do a "bad thing" and I know its not easy to stay calm when they are acting out.

PandaFeet Sun 23-Feb-14 11:37:47

The teacher should have acted on it by informing the CS member of staff, ofcourse.

But banging down the schools door isn't going to help the OPs DD is it?

Nanny0gg Sun 23-Feb-14 11:40:46

But banging down the schools door isn't going to help the OPs DD is it

No, but talking to them as to the best way to help her together will.

falulahthecat Sun 23-Feb-14 11:43:45

Obviously you wanted to know what was going on 'straight away' - but it's not like the problems can be stopped overnight, and I have a feeling that if you push your DD to tell you things 'now', like phoning her whilst at school, it's just going to push her further away and cause her to act even more like the persecuted victim.
I think, as hard as it is, you need to be reassuring and act like she's not in trouble (even though know had I done this sort of thing my Mum would've gone ballastic and locked me in the house! But she also shouted at me for letting her down when she found out I had an ED so...)
I know you've said you've asked her to see a therapist, but maybe instead try to be the therapist for her yourself.
Go slowly, talk yourself, don't just ask questions and demand answers. Let your own guard down and talk to her about mistakes you or other people have made and how you felt, and how you're worried she's going to regret throwing away the time when she should be happiest, and just keep reiterating how much you love her. Ask to have a day to yourself, perhaps on that day don't bring an of these issues up at all, just watch some films and go out for dinner or something and keep it neutral so she won't feel like every conversation you have is an accusatory or combative one.
I remember feeling like I was already an adult when I was 15, I also would never have dreamed of telling my mum all the horrible problems I was having for fear of letting them down or being blamed and told I had disappointed them again.
It's hard I know, because when people are doing suff like this you just want to give them a shake and ask what they think they're doing being so stupid - but it's never a simple reason!

With regard to the teacher, perhaps she thought she was just mouthing off?
Did they report it to anyone else at all?

gordyslovesheep Sun 23-Feb-14 11:45:28

you don't know the teacher DIDN'T act on it - involve the safeguarding lead who found she was safe and well at her friends house and took no further action

falulahthecat Sun 23-Feb-14 11:45:44

so needed her to be back ASAP so we could have a proper chat before I had to rush out

You CANNOT have a proper chat, if there is a time limit.
A proper chat needs to be at a time where nothing else is distracting you or rushing you from what's going on.

Aeroflotgirl Sun 23-Feb-14 11:51:03

Yanbu at all, she is still a minor and this is a safeguarding issue. As a person of responsibility she has a duty of care. She should have informed you and yes informed the safeguarding person at school.

Aeroflotgirl Sun 23-Feb-14 11:54:57

Exactly op is being blamed, she is also grieving and having a hard time right now. The school should have acted on it, she told them something very important which could gave put op dd in danger.

YouAreTalkingRubbish Sun 23-Feb-14 11:57:00

I would wait until you know the facts - The info has come to you in a round about way involving 15 year old girls. I would speak to the teacher and find out what actually happened before getting angry.

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