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To be so upset, worried and angry at son

(476 Posts)
dogsdieinhotcars Sun 27-Nov-16 02:28:50

Son is 16. Text about 21:00 saying he's staying at a friend's. Someone I don't know. So I say no, don't know them or parents. He's 16 (just). He says everyone is so he is. I'm saying no. Where are you? Says somewhere vague about 3 miles away. I insist. He continues to say nonsense about why and can't get back coz he got there by taxi. Basically I ring him. Tell him he has to get home. Where are you? Asks his friend who laughs and says somewhere about 6 miles away. I am angry and shout telling him I need an address to pick him up. He won't give it. Don't know! Puts phone down. I text. His dad texts saying you Ave until 22:00 to tell us the address. He must turn his phone off after I text how disrespectful he is being. And he has not answered nor text since. I have gone through anger, to hurt and now fear. I am so worried and yet immensely disappointed. I never raised him to be like this. I have to work at 07:00 and I am so churned and anxious. He is still my child, and I thought he was a friend to me. I don't know what to do.

CannotEvenDeal Sun 27-Nov-16 02:32:55

Yanbu at all.

However, 'I thought he was a friend to me' might be the issue here.

MissVictoria Sun 27-Nov-16 02:36:41

He's being a typical teen rebelling against the rules. All his mates are allowed to stay and he probably feels silly and embarrassed that he's being treated like a "kid" and being told no, so he's going the "better to ask for forgiveness than permission" route. He's decided he's old enough to decide for himself whose house he can stay at and he wants to stay so he is.
If he was 13 i'd understand your reaction, but he's 16, in his last year of school, and like it or not, he's growing up and testing the boundaries and wanting some independence and freedom.
Stop worrying, just be eady to give him a right telling off for disrespecting you and ignoring your wishes when he does come home tomorrow.

dogsdieinhotcars Sun 27-Nov-16 02:36:52

You think my friendliness toward my son is an issue? It implies we can talk, as far as teenage boys do, and have the same sense of humour. My husband told him in text that he has lost a good friend in me. My husband is here too. This is a father/son relationship. He knows he shouldn't mess with his dad so this surprises me even more.

bridgetoc Sun 27-Nov-16 02:38:11

Do not beat yourself up about this. He just really wants to stay where he is, and is willing to disobey you so that he does. If he is 16, and it's the first time he has done something like this you are doing very well.

Try not to worry because I'm sure he will be fine. It's not a huge deal, but make sure he is punished.

GreatFuckability Sun 27-Nov-16 02:38:28

He's 16. I think you are over reacting somewhat to stop him sleeping over at a friends. Yes he's being rude to turn his phone off, but you are also being unreasonable. He could move out at 16

dogsdieinhotcars Sun 27-Nov-16 02:39:45

I think had he actually asked before going I still would want to know a bloody address. He is still my responsibility, even at 16. How would I feel if anything happens and I don't even know where the hell he is?

lalalalyra Sun 27-Nov-16 02:39:50

You need to get rid of the "I thought he was a friend to me" - he's not your friend. You are his parent and he is your son. There's a line.

He's gone about it very, very badly, but you need to work out how you go forward from here. 16 is old to be insisting you know the parents before he stays with a mate imo. And going by DS1 (17) sleepovers/crashing at a mates on a weekend is far, far less organised now than it was when they were younger so you might need to work out yourself how you deal with last minute changes of plan.

Is he a sensible kid? Did he sound drunk? If he's normally a sensible kid, didn't sound drunk and he's turned his phone off then the only thing you can do is go to bed, get some sleep and deal with it tomorrow.

Tomorrow, after work, you and your DH sit him down and the three of you hash out together what happened tonight, why it wasn't planned and work out where you go from there.

lalalalyra Sun 27-Nov-16 02:41:33

My husband told him in text that he has lost a good friend in me.

Why has he lost a good friend because he's done one thing you don't approve of? That's a lot of pressure in a friendship, far less a parent/child one.

He knows he shouldn't mess with his dad so this surprises me even more.

What does that even mean? That he should never do anything to upset his Dad? What is his Dad going to do?

dogsdieinhotcars Sun 27-Nov-16 02:41:34

Thank you Miss Victoria, your words actually help a tad.

dogsdieinhotcars Sun 27-Nov-16 02:47:58

Oh blimey hubby won't do anything like hurt him physically, but he is stern when needed. He will just turn the internet off for a week. That kind of thing. And, no matter what some of you are saying, this good cop bad cop routine my husband and I do has actually kept him on the straight I guess until now! Yes, I am upset. I feel anxious. Yes, I do think I should have an address. What if, just what if, this person I don't know is a bad sort? No he didn't sound drunk. But who the hell knows? I thought I knew my son better. So I don't.

chitofftheshovel Sun 27-Nov-16 02:48:48

Come on, he's 16. I know it must be bloody difficult to let him go and I shall feel the same in 5 years time. But. I think you need to pick your battles. Is he usually a good lad? Personally at that age I was out and about lots, some was a big learning curve, mostly it was just great fun.

UsedToBeAPaxmanFan Sun 27-Nov-16 02:49:16

I think YABU. He is 16. He has texted you to let you know he's staying over somewhere, so you know he's ok.

I have 2 ds, now late teens but when ds2 was 16 he was always staying over at peoples houses. Given that he cycled everywhere (we live rurally) I was much happier that he did that rather than try to cycle home on a dark/wet night. . I didn't ask for an address, only that he texted me by 11pm to let me know if he was staying over somewhere so that I didn't lie awake worrying that he wasn't home.

When your ds gets back, try not to be too angry but maybe establish ground rules? Do remember that he's 16 though, not 12. He's old enough to work, get married etc. I know it's hard letting them grow up but you need to cut him some slack, I think.

dogsdieinhotcars Sun 27-Nov-16 02:51:02

lala was your son just turned 16 when this started? How did you feel? I think the anxiety of him cutting contact is worse right now.

lalalalyra Sun 27-Nov-16 02:52:30

He's a teenager. You need to try and rationalise it. He's an almost adult who has made a decision to stay with a friend.

He's not been arrested.
He's not injured himself.
He hasn't joined the army.
He hasn't left him.
He hasn't had a wheelie bin race down the street and ended up crashing into the side of the scariest neighbour in the streets car (Yep, thanks DS!).

He's growing up and that means he's going to do things you won't like. My DS (17) was on his work Christmas Do tonight. It wasn't particularly fun wondering when he was going to come in, how tipsy he would be (last time he came in tipsy I had to try and keep a straight face when he kept calling me 'mate') and the likes. But I did the same at his age. You probably did too. He hasn't turned into a different kid, it's just his turn to stretch boundaries, make decisions for himself and be a teenager that thinks he's a 100% fully grown adult now.

lalalalyra Sun 27-Nov-16 02:55:32

dogs The first time he decided to stay at a mate last minute I think he was 14/15ish. We live quite rurally. Not middle of nowhere, but enough that his schools mates live quite spread out. They were very much into some playstation game and didn't want to end their game so decided to have an "all nighter". He rang, said he wanted to stay and I didn't see any reason to object.

I'm not saying you are wrong to worry. We all worry, even when we know we shouldn't. But, in the kindest possible way, I do think you need to think about your reaction. He was with his mates. They were all staying. Probably all rang their parents to say "I'm staying at X's" and mostly/all got a "ok" reaction. Bombarding him with texts and demands was never going to end well. He was either going to turn his phone off or you were going to have an almighty row.

dogsdieinhotcars Sun 27-Nov-16 02:56:08

He isn't a bad lad, no, but he has this in built nature of being one of life's followers. I have known this since primary school. So he will follow the crowd

Sybys Sun 27-Nov-16 02:56:35

Why does he have to come home? Is there a reason you are so strict with him? I'd understand if he was a few years younger. It's hardly surprising he's 'rebelling' if this is how little freedom he is afforded.

dogsdieinhotcars Sun 27-Nov-16 02:58:03

I take it you knew these friends then? I do not know these friends. They are not his lifelong friends.

dogsdieinhotcars Sun 27-Nov-16 02:59:20

sybys if you read back it was about not knowing where the hell he was really. He is not a stifled child, far from it.

dogsdieinhotcars Sun 27-Nov-16 03:00:07

We are no stricter than we should be in this day and age

Topseyt Sun 27-Nov-16 03:00:17

Lyra has summed it up for me.

It is hard, but you can't keep the same level of control you did when he was at primary school.

My DD3 is 14. I hardly know the parents of many of her friends. It just isn't possible. Paths do not cross in the school playground as they did when they were little.

There is an element of trust in it now, though I do generally have to take her where she needs to get to.

He did at least text to let you know his plans. Not all teens would have done that. Do you trust him? If you do then it is probably fine, just have a good talk with him when he gets home tomorrow.

Topseyt Sun 27-Nov-16 03:02:59

I think you are being too controlling.

What your DH said about him losing a friend in you is surely utter bollocks. Why would that happen?

lalalalyra Sun 27-Nov-16 03:04:10

dogs Sometimes I knew them. Sometimes I didn't. I didn't know the majority of the parents as most of the kids got buses to school.

I think there comes a time when you have to accept that you can't control who they'll come into contact with, you just have to equip them for how to deal with the people that they do meet.

In all honesty I think the only thing you need to take him to task over tomorrow is if he didn't know exactly where he was. That's not on.

Other than that you need to come up with a system for how to deal with it if he does want to stay out. A 9pm text is pretty early imo - our rule is you text by 11pm if you are not coming home. If you are coming home then unless it's a special occasion you are in by 12.30pm (because the door is heavy and bangs no matter who/how you close it and we have young children in the house too).

dogsdieinhotcars Sun 27-Nov-16 03:04:12

He is rebelling about nothing. He just needs to be honest about where he is. And a straight forward answer without turning phone off. Just that. It's not a lot. I never slept away at 16 and my parents were very generous with me. Nor did my hubby he says. No, it's not a lot to want to know where he is, surely?

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