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...just where do you go from here?

(19 Posts)
whiteandnerdy Tue 15-Feb-11 20:57:18

OK, phone rings at 7:30am it's my DC (12years) phoning from his mum's. He asks if I could put some money on his school account so he can buy some food at lunch time. He sounds really down, I ask him what's the matter, he says nothing I'm going to tell you over the phone and promptly puts the phone down on me.

I quickly phone him up to ask him what the matter is, and if he wants to chat to me on his way to school. He can't emote what's bothering him, but I have a court hearing on access with the children on Thursday so I'm guessing that this maybe playing on his mind. When we get to the gate he asks if I can meet him after school, I say it's difficult with work and all.

Anyway I decide to just show my face after school at his mothers, who isn't in and it's the DSS(18years) whos doing the child care. Anyway we have a chat about me booking bowling for his birthday. I've just phoned him up and asked about howmany are going to his party and ask him to phone me in the morning to confirm the time I've booked. He tells me his mother now forbids him to use the phone unless he asks her or her partner.

Nothing like making your son feel even more isolated when the're feeling down. Here endith the rant angry.

truthisinthewine Tue 15-Feb-11 21:04:41

Hmmmmm surely if they are paying the bill it is just polite to ask to use the phone before just using it. It doesn't suggest he is banned from contacting anyone. Has there been an incident where someone else in the house has perhaps run up a huge bill so this is now the rule for everyone?

gettingeasier Tue 15-Feb-11 21:29:40

Its not a rant .

How old is your ds ? Does he have a mobile ? Are things a bit low in both your minds because of the pending court case ?

Is money very tight with your xw atm hence keeping smart card low nand watching phone bill ?

Sorry its like this for you

tammybear Tue 15-Feb-11 21:34:58

Could you arrange a particular time that you could call your DS so he knows when you'll be calling so can talk to you then? I can understand how frustrated you must feel

whiteandnerdy Tue 15-Feb-11 21:45:57

That's what we agreed to do, I have to phone him between 7:15 and 8am, probably right about money being tight, that iPhone4 his mother has arn't cheap.

DC is 12 on Saturday, I'm not keen on children having mobile phones ... but I'm cerntainly toying with the idea of buying a pay-as-you go phone for him.

AllDirections Fri 18-Feb-11 09:35:12

I think it's perfectly normal for a child to ask before using the phone. My 10 year old DD has a mobile so that she can phone her dad (more often used for texting friends!) and so that he can phone her even if she is still with the childminder.

If she is home then she prefers the landline (as I do because mobiles are for when the landline is not available in IMO) but she asks first. If it was a time that was not in our package then I would remind her to ask her dad to call her back because he has the whole package so it's not costing him anymore. If it's in the package time she can phone her dad whenever she likes.

I think you should get your son a mobile. At least then he can contact you (as long as he has credit left lol) but also you'll be the best dad in the world for a while, especially if he's been wanting one for ages.

elastamum Fri 18-Feb-11 10:45:48

I think ex is being a bit controlling.

Get him a mobile. My sons have them and it means I can call them and they can always call me regardless of what mood their dad is in. It was a god send when they were away at half term and they love being able just to get in contact when they feel like it.

AllDirections Fri 18-Feb-11 10:58:54

I forgot to say that my ex can phone here at any time to speak to my DD. It is controlling of your ex to say that you can only phone at certain limited times.

whiteandnerdy Fri 18-Feb-11 11:29:05

No no, that's the wrong end of the stick. That was my DS saying I could phone him at certain times due to him getting up in the morning and leaving the house at 8am. I did suggest he could always ask his mother before phoning me, he said his mother was always asleep in the morning. Erm, OK how about you wake her, he told me he tried once but woke the baby and hence was 'told off' by his mother. I don't know if he's laying on a bit thick ... but even if he is, then there must me a motivation for him wanting me to believe he feels so isolated, or wanting to see me making all the effort to overcome these problems.

Lemonylemon Fri 18-Feb-11 14:49:00

I think I'd go with the PAYG mobile phone idea. The cheapies cost £10 + £10 top up - nothing so valuable that other kids would want to steal.

whiteandnerdy Mon 03-Oct-11 11:56:05

OK so I'd thought I'd just resurrect this thread, it's now 7 months later. I bought my DS(12) a mobile phone in February, it goes missing/is lost round the ExP's house in May. I buy him a replacement, again it's gone missing around his mothers house. Anyone got any ideas, I could get him another and keep it round mine but what would be the point.

As for talking with me on the way to school his mothers said to my sons that I'll be sent to jail if they have contact with me on their way to school. I challenged Ex about this, she denied that she had said this to the children. I went on to say it's not what she said it's about the message she gives them and the children need to be reassured that contact with either parent wont result in anyone going to jail (read when ExP says "I didn't say that", I hear "those arn't the exact words I used to make my children think that"). Her response was ... "I don't tell you how to be a parent." Sigh!!

cestlavielife Mon 03-Oct-11 12:29:10

you're absolutely right -doesnt matter if she allleges she didnt say that - it is what the DC hear and understand by what she said.


not sure what you can do other than keep reassuring them - witht eh true facts - and soon they will be old enough to buy anduse their own mobile.

you dont want to encourage secrecy or lies from them either - but it should be up to them really to call you when they want.... .

Lemonylemon Mon 03-Oct-11 14:08:16

I'd buy him another cheapie PAYG phone and tell him to keep it in his schoolbag until he needs to use it. Tell him that he needs to look after his stuff as you can't afford to keep replacing things. Couch it in terms of "being responsible" for his belongings etc... Hopefully, that will get round the other point.

MeMySonAndI Mon 03-Oct-11 15:14:14

My advice is... forget about him having his own phone. Make some time to talk to him on a one to one basis.

I hate the dynamics built around mobile phones and children, to explain my point I am going to describe how easy it is to create bad feeling for the confusions caused over a mobile phone.

At the beginning, my ex would ring DS in the land line at regular hours and everything was fine. Admitedly, DS was often not keen in spending more than a couple of minutes on the phone with his had (or anyone else!).

Ex started ringing DS at different hours and things started to go down the drain: if he rang to late demanding to talk to him, I was obviously not happy of waking up DS to talk to his dad when I have spent an hour trying to get him in bed. If he rang in the early afternoon, we were either not at home or there where other distractions around (other children visiting, tv program, play etc) which meant DS really didn't want to go in the phone at the precise minute his dad called. Dad blamed me for this saying that I was not allowing him to have long conversations with his son or that I was not picking the phone when he rang (notice I don't have any device to identify who is calling).

When I asked ex to ring at certains times to ensure DS would be more likely to be willing to spend more time on the phone, my ex thought that as me trying to be controlling. I highly resented that, as I was just trying to ensure they could be on the phone free of distractions.

So ex resorted to the damned pay as you go phone, and I say damned because it brought more problems than it solved:

First, I really had to had it hammered into DS that the phone was there to talk to his dad, not to waste the credit downloading stuff from internet or ringing me to turn his light off or bring him something to eat (yes... the little monster found that increadibly funny), I would have been happy to add credit to the phone, but his dad refuse totalk to me and therefore give me the details to add more credit to it.

Second, once the mobile phone was provided ex demanded daily calls from DS. Problem is, DS didn't see the need to call that often so, often forgot to ring, which meant the short time they spend on the phone was spent mostly on ex telling DS off for not calling him (for some strange reason my ex won't ring DS but demands DS to ring him). Things went from bad to worse, my ex started punishing DS harshly during contact times because DS had not rang him as often as he demanded. DS then got into a circle where if he forgot to call he was scared shitless to ring as he was afraid of his dad telling him off, and I was equally scared shitless of DS not calling as I knew that I would be also blamed for that. But at the same time I could see the distress of DS at being told off and punished so I feel that pressing on him ringing his dad was like taking him to his dad to get him a good smacking (sorry... it was that bad). At the time, DS case worker asked me to leave DS to choose when to do the calling, and as you may imagine that was the end of the calls.

Third. I can have a heart attack everytime the phone goes missing, simply... I can't replace it. He won't talk to me, he doesn't understand reasons, and if I get DS a new phone with a new number because he misplaced his dad's, I'm sure my ex is going to kick off.

Fourth. The Fibs... I don't blame DS for telling fibs to his dad (I'm scared too), he sometimes says he's misplaced the phone, sometimes he turns it off and he forgets about it without me even noticing, and he has even told his dad he didn't have the phone available during holidays even when I have carried the stupid phone over three continents to ensure the access was there without neither of them bothering to call each other.

So my advice is, go back to the basics if you can, reasure your child you are there for him. Take time off to meet with him if there are importatn things to discuss. Try to mend things with your ex so you don't have to walk over egshells all the time and get in knots about phone issues. And above all, please be re assured that most times, when a child doesn't call, it is because they are distracted having a good time :-)

WibblyBibble Mon 03-Oct-11 15:50:30

TBH it sounds like your son is starting to behave like a normal teenager, wanting less communication with you and probably more with his peers (e.g. him setting times he'll talk to you- it's not his mum doing that), and you're blaming that on your ex. Not sure that's healthy. Hopefully you can get some time with him in person (take time off work ffs if you need to- he's more important than however much you'd earn in an afternoon!) and chat a bit about whatever you're worried about. It is going to be hard for him to be all talkative being a teenage boy anyway, which you should understand!

youllbewaiting Mon 03-Oct-11 16:59:11

My children can phone either parent whenever they want, they are 11 and 14 and both have mobiles.

Can't see a problem with it myself.

whiteandnerdy Mon 03-Oct-11 20:28:49

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

whiteandnerdy Mon 03-Oct-11 20:42:43

Instantly having second thoughts about my post above can someone from MN remove it please!

whiteandnerdy Thu 06-Oct-11 21:50:49

Update ... according to the ex ... her house phone doesn't work. Honestly, as parents the Ex and her husband weird me out, it feels like a cult. Maybe I'm too liberal, but the method of control that I hear from the kids and the utter stone wall I get from the Ex and her husband just makes me feel like my kids are in a bloody cult.

They've been told that they can't make their way to my house because they might get mugged. They've been told that if they meet me I'll go to jail. They can't use the phone without asking. And if I raise any of these as concerns I get "I don't tell you how to be a parent but out it's none of your business."


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