DN asked if he could stay with his friend on Saturday night. It's a friend from his class whose name he has mentioned a few times. We said fine, so long as we have the address etc. which he gave us. We were actually very pleased as this is the first social thing he's done since starting his new school in September.
He called about 11 to say he wasn't feeling great and wanted to come home. It turns out there were several of them and they were all out (I don't know where, he's still asleep so we haven't talked to him about it yet). So not at this boy's house at all then, but in the street!
I'm not really blaming him, perhaps he didn't know what to expect either. But we live in north london and I'm certainly not happy to have him out late at night on the streets at just 13.
It depends on the friend. I had a couple of friends at that age whose parents were a bit more lax than mine (usually ones who had siblings a lot older than them) and we were quite good at 'fudging' where we were going and just wandering. Most of the time we were in. That was the joy of a time with no mobile phones though - no way I could have got away with that now, and also we're talking 25 years ago. I would not be happy if DS1 did that even though we live in the same part of south London I grew up in!
I don't think it would wrong to insist that going to a friends house means being at that friends house.
Sounds like thats what he thought would be happening then realised it was too late to be on the streets at that hour so decid to call and say he felt unwell. Sounds quite sensible. My mum used to ring parents if I was staying somewhere, expecially if it was the first time. It was so embarrassing but it will clear things up like what time expected in etc and might make you feel more comfortable.
Its not common round here for 13 yo to be out at that time but it does happen, different parents have different ideas of whats acceptable so I think its best to check first.
I hope so squarehat. I'm definitely not going to let him wander about. But I don't think there's anything to tell him off for this time. I'll just work out what happened, whether it turned out differently to expected and make very clear he's not allowed to be out at night.
Next time I think we have to insist on the home number of the friend and mention that we might need to call. I would like to build trust with him though. He already thinks I'm ridiculously strict and always going on about homework.
Know what you mean about ringing and him seeing you as strict, the threat that you might ring would probably be enough. Sounds like he knew he shouldnt be o ut that late. A quick chat will probably do the trick. Not looking forward to DD being 13!
I have 4 children and we have lots of sleepovers. I would say do not ring the house, maybe just text him. Its not trust if you are checking up on him. He has already proved to you he made the right choice. At the end of the day young people will do what they want to do the trick is to not over react when the lines of communication are still open and then they will hopefully remain open. He sounds like a very sensible young man.
I think your DS should be congratulated on doing the right thing. This is the ruse we have told our teenage DCs ( DD15 and DS13) to use when they find themselves in a situation where they are not happy and want to get out of a tricky situation. DD only used it once so far when other kids started drinking too much and getting silly. The fact that she wanted to go home alerted the party hosts parents to what was going on and a potentially dangerous situation was stopped.