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To expect an almost 14yo to be able to buy a few items from the shop without issue?

(59 Posts)
FireSquirrel Sun 28-Aug-16 17:25:54

Asked stepson to pop to the local supermarket and get a few things for me (I have mobility issues so he often pops to shops for me, usually without issue). Gave him a list, only six things in total, all of them pretty straightforward. Noticed he was gone a bit longer than usual but assumed he was just stuck in a queue or had bumped into a friend. Eventually he reappeared with no food whatsoever, saying he 'couldn't find' a single thing on the (very short and straightforward) list! Forgetting or not being able to find the odd item I could understand, we're all human, but he claims he couldn't find a single thing on the list, not even bananas ffs! By then it was too late to go back as the shop would've been shut. Asked him why he didn't ask a member of staff (big supermarket so plenty of help about) - 'i dunno'. Asked him why he didn't come straight back and tell me, rather than hanging around for so long that by the time he did finally come back the shop was shutting - 'i dunno'. Gave him a talking to about using initiative and asking for help when needed, but feel it really shouldn't have been necessary to still be having to explain that at his age. When chatting to my DH about it later, he didn't seem to think it was a particularly big deal, and there have been similar situations in the past where he's implied that I have unreasonable expectations for my stepson and am unnecessarily harsh on him. Am I really being unreasonable to expect a 13, almost 14 year old to be able to complete a basic shopping list and to use initiative and common sense when needed, and to feel that to not do so is taking the pee?

acasualobserver Sun 28-Aug-16 17:28:40

I don't think he went to the shop at all.

WatchingFromTheWings Sun 28-Aug-16 17:31:54

My DS used to go to the corner shop at 10yo for bread/milk/sweets. By 14 he'd do a basket of shopping (never a trolley/weekly shop) plus gas/electric top ups if needed.

neolara Sun 28-Aug-16 17:34:46

Hmm. I agree with acasualobserver. I suspect he didn't even make it to the shops. Surely very few 13 yos can be that hopeless.

FireSquirrel Sun 28-Aug-16 17:39:52

I'm pretty sure he was at the shop, it's only a few mins away from our house and theres not much else nearby so he'd have a job do do much else in the amount of time he took. I do agree that he probably wasn't actually shopping though, gut feeling says he went there, hung around for a bit without bothering to look for anything and came back, but I can't understand why anyone would bother doing something so daft, and it's the sort of thing that if I suggested it to my DH, he would accuse me of just wanting to think badly of my stepson.

Ninasimoneinthemorning Sun 28-Aug-16 17:40:48

He didn't go to the shop!

Ninasimoneinthemorning Sun 28-Aug-16 17:41:59

He probably want you to stop asking him to do things. My dd1 theory was to do something so shit I'd stop asking her angry

KingJoffreyLikesJaffaCakes Sun 28-Aug-16 17:42:35

He didn't go.

DS has been going to the shop since he was about 8. Was only over the road. First time he went alone I cried.


Shockers Sun 28-Aug-16 17:45:47

Is he an anxious type? Perhaps he didn't want to have to talk to anyone, so he did go, but loitered for what he thought was a reasonable amount of time, then came back with an excuse.

EveOnline2016 Sun 28-Aug-16 17:47:46

Basic items on a bank holiday weekend may mean it wasn't in stock.

Fairylea Sun 28-Aug-16 17:48:23

No way did he go to the shop. Could he have bumped into a friend on the way? I would imagine he spent so long chatting to someone that by the time he reached the shop it was shut and he is too embarrassed to say. I have a 13 year old and that's the kind of thing a lot of her friends would do!

FadedRed Sun 28-Aug-16 17:48:50

This is the sort of incompetence that you will read about on numerous other threads on MN. Do a job badly, or not at all, and you don't get asked to do it again.
Your DH's comment would make me suspect DS has learned this behaviour from DH.

VeryBitchyRestingFace Sun 28-Aug-16 17:52:59

He sounds delightful. confused

Presumably you got the money back in full?

FireSquirrel Sun 28-Aug-16 17:59:20

In any case, the main thing which has annoyed me isnt the possibility that stepson might have been pulling a fast one and not gone to the shops, but my DHs attitude to it and the fact that he seems to think it's perfectly reasonable and plausible that a 13 year old could go to a shop with a basic list and not come out with a single item, and is taking a 'these things happen' attitude to the whole thing as if it's typical of a 13 year old not to be able to complete a simple shopping list, whereas I feel that even if stepson is telling the truth and did attempt to find the items, the fact that he just gave up instead of trying to solve the problem is royally taking the piss.

So for the sake of argument, lets say stepson is telling the truth and was at the shop, did try to find the items but couldn't so came home again. Is that reasonable for a child of his age or would you expect him to have the common sense to be able to problem solve and ask for help?

piggypoo Sun 28-Aug-16 18:01:49

Usually it's a case of the person asked to do the task being to scared to say no to you so if they cock up the simple request, they won't get asked again. A junior member of staff at our office was sent to the corner shop, to get a pack of biscuits, a pint of milk and 3 bags of crisps, he returned 1 hour later, minus everything, and tried to tell me in all sincerity that the is "no call" for cheese and onion crisps! This lad was 20 though! Needless to say, he didn't last long at the job! smile

Myusernameismyusername Sun 28-Aug-16 18:02:26

If my DD did this I would automatically assume that she saw someone from school, didn't want to talk to them and assumed she would look a twat and didn't go in the shop for that reason.
She's refused to go in shops with me before because of it, maybe a crush or a popular kid being in there

I kind of get that

manicinsomniac Sun 28-Aug-16 18:02:40

I think Fairylea has it.

If he was at the shop then yes, I would expect him to be able to do this.

yeOldeTrout Sun 28-Aug-16 18:02:44

Teens can be amazingly inept.
I swear one of mine came home with 4x1pt cartons of milk once, rather than 1x4pt which I was asking for. Another one came home empty handed because the shop only had 2pint cartons of milk, shop was out of 4 pint cartons, so they thought better to get nothing.

LouisTherouxsGlasses Sun 28-Aug-16 18:07:17

I reckon he bumped into one of his mates and the shop was closed by the time he got there. grin

FireSquirrel Sun 28-Aug-16 18:12:40

Yep, got all the money back.

Shop was definitely still open. I suspect that he did make a half hearted attempt to find things, couldn't and was too embarrassed to ask for help (he isn't usually shy or anxious but is going through a definite hormonal phase so perhaps decided that asking for help is cringey) so hung around for a bit and came back. I think that's royally taking the piss though whereas DH seems to think it's not worth getting annoyed over.

DH isn't generally an arse btw but does have definite blinkers where his son is concerned. DHs ex had a lot of issues and since they broke up doesn't bother seeing or having any contact with stepson at all, and I think perhaps DH perhaps tries to overcompensate for that by being more lenient with stepson than he otherwise might.

RebootYourEngine Sun 28-Aug-16 18:13:05

Whenever my 12 yr old ds goes to the shop he will come back with maybe one item that i asked for and a load of stuff that he wanted. I dont think your dss went to the shops.

Hope you got the money back.

dizzygirl1 Sun 28-Aug-16 18:14:08

My 9 year old DD has just started going to the local shop alone withe a list. Does really well - picked rolls instead of wraps as the wraps were really expensive! But did come home with 2 packs of rolls last time because I had given her £2! Hahaha
I would assume either he didn't go to the shop or he struggled with the list. Without being funny OP but do you know if he can definitely read quite well? Because that could be an issue if he's not a strong reader going and reading in a busy confusing environment could really be a big issue. Sorry x

Biscuitsneeded Sun 28-Aug-16 18:17:55

My DP can't seem to come back form a shop with all the items on my list either. It seems he categorically can't ask for help if he can't find something. I think this is quite typical of males in general...

OhTheRoses Sun 28-Aug-16 18:22:34

Not sure I sent dd once for butter, an orange and single cream and she came back with Bertolli, six oranges and creme fraiche because she wasn't sure and didn't want to ask. Must have been about 13. I had to really bite my tongue but I could have been more specific. How much independence does he have with his mother?

Oblomov16 Sun 28-Aug-16 18:22:44

My12 year old has been able to go and get exactly what I ask for, for quite some time.
I suspect he did it on purpose so you won't ask again - mine does this with things he doesn't want to do, - like watering the plants.

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