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To take his phone?

(55 Posts)
basketweaver2012 Mon 23-May-16 15:44:10

My DS 12 has his own phone, renewable sim deal which I pay for every month. It doesn't cost a fortune and once he's used his data etc that's it till next month. He understands and is fine with this.
He now has a new girlfriend and is spending hours on the phone to her at a time. ( I can't even get a text back usually!)
I've set him up with whatsapp and told him to call using this so he isn't using his minutes, so he knows I'm fine with him chit chatting to her.
we have a rule that no phones or iPads allowed in the bedrooms over night, I tell both DCs that I will take them downstairs and charge them in the kitchen for the next day.
DS has said the last few nights his phones downstairs and is fine for charge so I've left it at that, however this morning I went into his room to wake him up and see the phone popping out from under his pillow.
Ive then checked his messages and see he's been texting said girl until almost midnight, having gone to bed at 9!!!
I've checked on both DCs when I go up so he's obviously heard me coming and pretended to be asleep but I'm really cross that he's lied.
But then I do understand he's giddy and probably wants to be chatting to her but he's still lied to me to get what he wants which is his phone!
The worst part is that I have skimmed these messages to make sure everything is above board from both ends and see that he is regular swearing in his texts.
'fuck' appears quite often and I know he's doing it to appear cool or whatever but I'm so disappointed that he's speaking like this and also like this to a gir!!
I've told him that he should never speak to other people like this and it's not cool and he's making himself look an idiot and that her parents wouldn't be happy if they were to read these messages.
Hes the sweetest kid usually and I can't understand why he's acting like this!
Ive taken the phone off him and I can see his gutted.
I think it needs to be gone a month or so along with other decides, but I'm not sure if I'm being too harsh?

Nanny0gg Mon 23-May-16 16:13:05

I think a month is a bit OTT!

What would you do if he did something really bad?

curren Mon 23-May-16 16:18:17

I think Yabu.

I charge dds phone over night, like you so I know she isn't staying up on it. Quite honestly as a teen I would have stayed up on it too. Wether it needs charging or not, it comes out of the bedroom.

Personally I would just tell him it comes out of his room wether it needs charging or not. And stick by the rule you set. No phones in bedrooms overnight.

As for the swearing, he is 12. They swear. For many reasons. I find it odd you are so bothered he is swearing in messages to a girl. Unless he is being verbally abusive and swearing at her, I think you need to chill out. Discuss it with him and tell him why you don't like it, if you must. But you do realise this is how he talks at school in front of his friends and his friends likely talk the same?

RiverCambs Mon 23-May-16 16:20:42


He's being a normal 12 year old boy.

wannabestressfree Mon 23-May-16 16:20:50

I warn first then have a chat tonight then tell him it's coming out of his room without fail every night.
The swearing....meh....

MooPointCowsOpinion Mon 23-May-16 16:22:34

I think you're right, the phone needs to go as he cant use it properly. At least a week, and then he needs to hand it to you every night.

Letting these little things slide would be a mistake. They build. If you don't have boundaries on these, they push until they find a boundary you're willing to set.

CassandraAusten Mon 23-May-16 16:24:33

I think you are being too harsh. A month!

Topseyt Mon 23-May-16 16:28:27

The swearing really is how they talk to each other at school. Nothing you can say or do will change that. Just accept it as teenage speak so long as he doesn't swear at you.

I wouldn't take the phone off him at all, but I would be ensuring he stuck to your rules about it charging up in the kitchen overnight, and check up on that.

Must admit though that I didn't follow that one either with mine because their phones are also their alarm clocks.

Topseyt Mon 23-May-16 16:33:29

And why not say fuck to a girl.

I have three DDs, and I can tell you for sure that girls are not special snowflakes who would be horrified and keeling over backwards at hearing such a thing. They use the word too.

Goingtobeawesome Mon 23-May-16 16:42:55

A month his too long. I'd do a day. Given his situation that will hurt..

tinyterrors Mon 23-May-16 16:44:11

A month is way too much for a first offence and something relatively minor.

I'd take it for a week for the lying about him following the rules about leaving it in the kitchen overnight.

I'd let the swearing go, it's what pre-teens and teens do when talking to friends. The fact he's talking to a girl is neither here nor there, girls swear as much as boys.

HappyNevertheless Mon 23-May-16 16:45:41

A month is along time and I assume you would prefer him to still have a phone when he goes to school/a friend's house/wherever he is going on his own.
Be careful not to shoot yourself in the foot there.

But YY about not leaving him having his phones upstairs. You'll have to be VERY careful every evening (ie check if the hone is where it supposed to be). I've had to do that with dc1 (also 12yo) for his iPad. A real pain but I haven't found any other way.

I also would be very annoyed about the swearing but YY about the fact that's the way they talk in secondary. Dc1 said if he new some swear words from the playground in primary, then learnt all the other within 2 weeks in secondary...
I don't like it because they DO get used to speak like this and it comes out at home too, usually as a knee jerk reaction (Think 'Oh for f* sake' when dropping something). I'm sure that by the time they are adults, it will part of their normal language and they will keep on using these words.
I have no idea how yoou can stop that though....

var123 Mon 23-May-16 16:47:14

Swearing isn't impressive IMHO. I'd be disappointed if I caught my children swearing every other line and I'd not think well of another child who swears regularly. So, I know where you are comign from, OP.

However, I think a month is too long. For a start, you'll endanger this relationship which will break his heart. (It will get broken anyway but you want to be able to help him through it, not have him blame you and reject your support).

Also, though its annoying and upsetting when they lie. I think that the best thing you can do is punish him by being disappointed and show that he's lost your trust, so from now on the phone stays downstairs after 9pm and he won't get it back until he shows you that he can be responsible about bedtimes.

nooka Mon 23-May-16 16:48:01

My children had similar rules at that age, and after a while I stopped being so vigilant and I caught dd chatting very late at night. I was very cross with her, told her off very fiercely and then confiscated her phone at bedtime for the next year or so. No other punishment.

I think OP you have to accept some responsibility here, you must have known that there was a high chance your ds would be chatting to his girlfriend after bedtime. It's just way too tempting with a phone in easy reach.

ZippyNeedsFeeding Mon 23-May-16 16:49:14

Trying to teach him that girls are somehow different and need special language which won't hurt their delicate little minds is old-fashioned and ultimately damaging.
As for the phone, I'd take it away at night for charging and give a strong warning about telling lies. A whole month is way over the top and gives you less room for manoeuvre if he does anything more serious.

fieldfare Mon 23-May-16 16:50:24

The swearing isn't really a big deal, but you are being a bit heavy handed saying the phone is confiscated for a month.
I'd go with the rest of the week, he can have it back after he's done his homework on Friday evening and if he makes a fuss over it then it will be Sunday.

BatFacedGrrl Mon 23-May-16 16:53:58

I wouldn't confiscate for a month but I'd be removing the phone each evening from now on at 8pm and telling him there is to be no more swearing in messages.

He's 12, not 16. You're doing the right thing. The month is just a little overkill

TheSnowFairy Mon 23-May-16 16:54:36

I don't think it's the OP'S responsibility, it's her son's. Remove the phone for a couple of days and then make him bring it to you at 9pm each night.

It is tempting for them but I have really clamped down as well and mine are definitely not allowed gadgets upstairs at bedtime.

BatFacedGrrl Mon 23-May-16 16:54:38

Oh and trying to teach him to be respectful towards women is a good thing by the way..

coffeeisnectar Mon 23-May-16 17:02:52

Pick your battles. He's 12 and at the start of a few tough years ahead with hormones, school, friends, girlfriends etc.

Do not go at him like a raving lunatic. That's not going to help your relationship with him.

Tell him you need to be able to trust him. Let him have the phone until 10pm and then it goes downstairs and he goes to sleep. BUT only after he's finished his homework.

9pm as a bedtime is a bit early and it was around this age I started letting my oldest self regulate her bed times. Yes, she went a bit mad at first but she soon learned that she still had to get up and it was in her own interests to get to sleep at a reasonable time.

BertrandRussell Mon 23-May-16 17:06:28

Gosh. What will you do if he does something really bad?

basketweaver2012 Mon 23-May-16 18:00:21

Ok I accept a month is harsh!
However, it isn't a first offence, he was caught swearing in texts previously (to a friend) and warned and whilst I appreciate girls are not delicate little flowers I don't think it's very respectful for him to be swearing like that with her! It wasn't even in context!! I would get a terrible impression of a boy if I saw fuck this, that and the other in my DDs messages
It's more about him lying, not the act of staying up texting. He's deliberately lied about his phone being downstairs when he knew he has it the whole time.

basketweaver2012 Mon 23-May-16 18:01:45

Plus he doesn't need his phone for safety/school etc. He is dropped off and picked up each day as don't live within walking distance!

acasualobserver Mon 23-May-16 18:04:13

One month?! Don't stand in the way of love OP!

humblesims Mon 23-May-16 18:16:18

I think he just needs to be told that bad language is not a good idea (I know everyone uses it these days its not a big deal but its not really great either) and that chatting to girlfriend til all hours is not on and that if it happens again the phone will be confiscated. A chat and a warning. He's 12 he's going to lie. As long as he doesnt lie about more important things. As others have said. Pick your battles.

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