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WWYD re damage to neighbours property

(56 Posts)
lalalalyra Fri 22-Jul-16 23:33:58

3 boys - 13, 11 & 8 have damaged something belonging to one of my neighbours. It was accidental, but careless (they were playing with a ball where they shouldn't have been).

Two boys were playing with the ball. One was watching, but egging them on so all three equally culpable (well imo - mine was the one sat on the wall).

All three apologised to neighbour and fessed up. It will cost £60ish to replace the item so we (the three parents) had agreed to split it three ways between the boys. Each parent obviously then to decide how to deal with their child themselves.

Parent 1 has now decided that she'll punish her DS, but won't pay (she doesn't like the neighbour - I feel this is completely irrelevant). She says if neighbour has precious things in stupid places (which to be fair it is as neighbour herself says she has broken it with her car at least 4 times this year already) then they'll get damaged and neighbour said, out of earshot of the boys, not to bother replacing it.

Parent 2 has suggested that they and I split the cost 2 ways. I'm torn. It's really unfair on neighbour if they don't get full replacement value, but I'm really reluctant to make DS pay extra when his friend is paying nothing and I don't really want to cover Parent 1's stingyness out of my own pocket, but that feels petty over £10.


TheAntiBoop Fri 22-Jul-16 23:39:09

Tricky. Which boy was yours (age)?

I would take the £20 from your ds and pay the ten on top. And explain to your son that when you break things you replace them. I don't see anything wrong in explaining you don't agree with the other parents decision to pay nothing.

What was it they broke? Seems odd to have somethings that gets broken so often so curious what it is!!

NatalieRushman Fri 22-Jul-16 23:41:50

I wouldn't top it up. I would pay the £20 and deal with your son as you would, but I would absolutely not cover the other boy's share.

sandgrown Fri 22-Jul-16 23:42:08

I would pay your son's share only. Let your friend explain why she is not paying

lalalalyra Fri 22-Jul-16 23:43:41

Mine is the 8 year old. He was sat on the wall, but he was egging the other two on. So I'm trying to ignore the fact that I feel the other two should have known better even more than him (because he does know better than that).

It's a planter type thing. They must have really hit the ball hard for it to break, which is why I think it's important they pay for it. If it had been a car or a window then it could have caused proper damage.

lalalalyra Fri 22-Jul-16 23:44:57

the non-paying parent isn't my friend as such. We all live in the same bit which is why the kids were playing together.

FuzzyOwl Fri 22-Jul-16 23:48:43

It sounds like you are saying you accept your son is one third of the total responsibly so I think he needs to pay his share (not half) and leave it at that. As said by a PP, leave the other mother to explain why her son isn't paying anything.

HeddaGarbled Fri 22-Jul-16 23:49:22

Agree with PPs, pay your (son's) share and leave the non-payer to argue it out with the neighbour.

Airandmungbeans Fri 22-Jul-16 23:50:03

What sandgrown said. The fact that Parent 1 isn't paying is not your responsibility. She should explain her reasons to neighbour. You and Parent 2 just pay your share and tell neighbour to speak to Parent 1.

TheAntiBoop Fri 22-Jul-16 23:51:53

I guess I am coming at this from something that happened when I was a kid

A friend and I broke something accidentally when we were around 8. It was most definitely her fault but I was there and I went along with it so accepted my culpability. Her parents refused to pay as 'kids will be kids' so my parents covered the full cost. My dads view was that the person who the item belonged to shouldn't be paying out and he told the other parents exactly what he thought of their attitude. I didn't play out with that friend quite so much after that but that was probably partly to do with my discomfort over the original incident.

lalalalyra Fri 22-Jul-16 23:54:44

Thats so good! That's what I text back to Parent2 (she feels she and I should split it so neighbour is not out of picket), then I wondered if I was being unfair. Whatever the parent1 decides is up to her, i'll give neighbour DS's third from his piggy bank.

I'm more than happy for DS to pay his third, he's grounded as well so I'm not thinking he's a hard done by wee angel or anything. I'm just not happy for him to have to pay extra because the parent1 has decided not to make her DS pay a share.

I feel a bit sorry for neighbour as she'll be out of pocket, but she can take it up with the other parent. Bloody first day of the holidays as well! I'm fuming with the stupidity.

lalalalyra Fri 22-Jul-16 23:58:00

antiboop I agree with your Dad which is why I was doubting myself. I'm really annoyed with DS. He knows that he's not to play football at that bit because it's too close to a couple of the houses. I feel a bit sorry for him (although he doesn't know that tonight) because he was just sitting on the wall, both of the other boys have said that, but he was egging them on so I feel he needs to learn that if you do things as a group then you carry the responsibility as a group.

However the idea of him paying an extra share whilst an older child gets allowed away with it would really stick in my throat.

TheAntiBoop Sat 23-Jul-16 00:03:49

I agree the full amount shouldn't come from your ds. Tbh I don't quite get how he was egging them on to play football in a place they know they shouldn't either!

I just remember having to go round and apologise with my dad because the friend didn't go. The neighbour had the measure of the situation so gave me an easy ride but I do remember how upset she was about the thing having been broken. It taught me a good lesson in respect for other people and taking responsibility for my actions!!

I think the worst thing about it is that your friend isn't being fair on the neighbour because of a personal dislike.

ElsaAintAsColdAsMe Sat 23-Jul-16 00:06:30

I think I would go halves on it and try and recoup the money from the other woman. Hopefully if you pay it she will be shamed into paying you back.

The person who shouldn't be paying or chasing money is the neighbour. It isn't her fault at all so why should she lose out or have to chase money.

Good neighbourly relations are worth far more than a tenner.

DancingDinosaur Sat 23-Jul-16 00:11:28

I'd make ds pay a third. I'd probably top it up to the half and tell the other person she owes me cash for their share. Neighbour shouldn't have to chase round for it.

lalalalyra Sat 23-Jul-16 00:13:33

antiboop They were playing a daft game they play. It's a two player thing. I'm 99% sure that when one of the other boys was "out" DS would have had a turn. He was cheering them on. He shouldn't have been there. He shouldn't have been sat on the wall either (for safety's sake - it's crumbling).

The only good thing is that neighbour isn't upset. She would have been had the boys not told her, but because they knocked on the door to tell her and apologised she's alright. She even said not to replace it, but that's her just being too nice.

She won't have an issue with me and parent2 not splitting the cost in 2, in fact I think she'd be pretty annoyed at the two youngest boys footing the bill.

I'll see what happens. If there's any sign of an issue I'll speak to her. I'm just going to go with paying DS's share now and see how it goes. Maybe if he'd been the eldest kid there id feel different and that's the bit im not sure on.

Pay just your third, that's reasonable. In a few years time your ds will be of age for criminal responsibility, when he definitely could be prosecuted for being part of a group committing a crime as an encourager. Teach him that now and you could help him make better decisions in the future.

Is this generally a suitable friendship or one to discourage?

Duck90 Sat 23-Jul-16 00:14:31

I agree with above posts. But, it's been damaged 4 times already by the owners, what on earth is it? It can't look that amazing after all that.

Bestthingever Sat 23-Jul-16 00:20:09

Don't pay for the other boy and make sure the neighbour knows they have chosen not to

Dumpelstiltskin Sat 23-Jul-16 00:21:44

Why should your DS be culpable when he didn't actually break anything? There is quite an age difference between him and the other boys, why should he be punished for what they did? So what if he was cheering them on. I'm sure he didn't expect them to break something.

Don't get this at all. Are you trying to punish your son for something he didn't do to keep in the good books of your neighbour?

GlitteryFluff Sat 23-Jul-16 00:25:02

I think paying a third is right.
Neighbour and the non-paying patent can sort it between them.

stinkbombcottage Sat 23-Jul-16 00:26:14

I think you're doing the right and honourable thing. The parent who won't contribute certainly isn't as honourable as you and if they take the "suck it up as s**t happens" then I'm sure karma will get them.

lalalalyra Sat 23-Jul-16 00:26:50

decaff it's not one I encourage. It just so happens we all live in the same two streets (there's a grassy bit between the two so most of the kids from the two play there). It'll be discouraged from now on I think, especially with it being the eldest one who is going to get away with paying. That's not a lesson I want DS to learn is acceptable.

If it was a friends child who'd damaged it id pay up, but we're all neighbours. I get enough grief from the grumpy neighbour opposite (anything kid related gets brought to my door because I have 6 so there's one of me was involved somehow by him, even if we are in holiday...) without starting that sort of precedent.

It's just a planter that's put in a daft place (neighbour herself said that). It's too fragile for where it is, but that's not the point. If she wants to replace it 50 times a year that's up to her. It was (just) in her driveway so it should have been safe.

lalalalyra Sat 23-Jul-16 00:32:04

dumpel because the three of them were playing involved. When one boy was "out" then DS would have been in. So it could easily have been damaged in his turn. As far as I'm concerned, and DS to be fair, they were all together.

It's got nothing to do with keeping in the neighbours good books. It's about teaching DS that there are consequences to his choice of games and who hangs about with. he also knows that he's not allowed to play there (he should have been on the grass) and he's not allowed to sit on the wall as it belongs to neighbour and it's old and crumbly so he could have damaged it. He chose to ignore the rules

Duck90 Sat 23-Jul-16 00:38:13

your neighbour has broken the same planter 4 times, this very fragile planter costs £60 (so neighbour has spent £240 on replacement planters) perhaps you could suggest a more robust planter?

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