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I'm so angry with dd(22 Posts)
We had a phone call yeterday while we were out from a worried friend (who is also a neighbour) to say that money had gone missing from their house and that their son who is 6 said he took it and gave it to our dd who is 11. We said she hadn't mentioned it and would talk to her. Turns out she took it from him and hid it thinking she would get away with keeping it.
I am so cross at her for for the embattassment she has caused us and her dishonesty!
Just wondered what everyone would do in this situation? She wants for nothing and last week I even took her into town to open her a bank account with a cash card that she was desperate for as all her friends have them. I felt like this was a real kick in the teeth for everything she gets.
At the moment she is grounded, I'm thinking a week but mostly because that's all I could stand although I think it should probably be longer. And no pocket money for a month - and certainly no cash card!
Try to find out what she needed the money for. Is there any chance she's being bullied? You'll have to go really gently, and it might take a while to get the full story, but you do need to make sure you know what's really going on.
Has she apologised to the family she misappropriated the money from ?
I think that is important
btw, nicking stuff is a rite of passage for many children
this will very likely be a one-off if she gets the shock of you coming down quite hard on her wrt how disappointed you feel
I used to steal money from my family when I was younger, then into my teens, this action was to hurt my parents for their behaviour. My actions were done out of hurt, I didn't need the money, but I did it to get reactions.
I would sit and discuss any issues or find out if your daughter needed the money for anything etc. It's not actually that uncommon and it does usually signify something more deep rooted.
Just trying to address all points raised so far:-
flogging - she doesn't "need" the money for anything. She told me she kept it because she thought she'd get away with it. I don't think there is anything more deep rooted to this. I think she saw an oppertunity and took it.
I made her take the moeny back yesterday and appologise to them. She cried and I told the mother how angry I was with her. Her son is also being punished for taking the money from her house.
She has earned money through chores before and certain things are expected of her. We were also going to draw up a list of pocket money rules for her to stick to. I'd already told her that any back chat or naughty behaviour would reduce her pocket money allowance.
I spoke to her last night aboout it - she said she didn't realise it was the adults money - she thought it belonged to the boy. I had a long chat with her about why she felt it was ok to take the boys money and how would she feel if someone did that to her or her younger siblings.
I just can't even bear to look at her right now!
I don't think one episode like this does always signify deeper problems
Many children do this around this age because they can (or they think they can)
It can simply be a boundary-testing rite of passage for many and (if no other issues) will be sorted by a short, sharp shock and never repeated again
You have handled it the right way, IMO
I think you should get over it now, though
does a week grounded seem like enough? When my sister stole money as a teenager she was grounded for a month and confined to her room the entire time. We have taken her TV out of her room too and she spent all of yesterday doing homework.
a month without any money - is that enough too?
I'm trying to give a punishment that is warrented but also that I can carry through on. I think having her confined to her room for a month would drive me and dh mad more than anything!
same with the money thing
and she is 11, not yet a teenager
and please don't tell her "you can't bear to look at her"
Please note that while the behaviour was bad, it wasn't end-of-the-world bad. She's not been engaging in sustained bullying, for instance, nor does she appear to have done this sort of thing before.
It's a temptation to pile punishment on top of punishment the first time your DC do something bad, but this is a crap idea. You've dealt with it (and grounding for a week is plenty for an 11 year old) now you need to move on.
FWIW, I was a serious theif when I was a child. I grew out of it pretty quick because the consequences were consistent.
The worst thing for me was having to take stuff back- I cringe with embarassment 25 years later; so I think you've done the right thing.
She's made a mistake & hopefully learned from it.. Unless she is all bad I would go easy now. Long periods of hostility between you two won't encourage honesty from her. If you feel she has got away lightly, perhaps do something nice together that helps others; let her see it's more rewarding to be good.
I have 11 yr dd too - very testing sometimes.
Agree with AF.
A week is enough.
Try not to go back again and again to "revisit" the crime. It is done, she has apologised, she is being punished.
You have to put this behind you and not worry that it is the start of a life of crime. I think that most children take something from a friend - I can remember stealing a hairbrush that I never used because I felt so bad about taking it.
I am not a huge fan of money = reward as I think that chores and good behaviour should be a given.
Pocket money is given in our house so that the children can buy things from their money. Which means if we are out somewhere and they want to spend money on something, they use their own. We have a halfsave-halfspend policy, that they have to save at least half of their pocket money each week.
I think the punishment suits the 'crime'. I wouldn't push it further. You have spoken, expressed your disappointment and she seems quite regretful.
thanks - it nice to hear all your (more balanced) comments. It can be difficult to clear the red mist in these situations and look at things objectively which is exactly why I posted on here. I don't think my dd is all bad at all but I am not blinkered and know that she is no angel either, although I am also perfectly aware that she learns some of her bad behaviour from myself and dh.
So, while kids don't come with a manual at least there is mumsnet
I absolutely agree with AF, a week is long enough.
Your dd now needs your reassurance that you don't love her any less because of what she's done, and that your anger has been caused because of what she did and not what she is.
Emphasise that any disappointment you feel about her behaviour cannot alter your love for her, and that it will not cause you to think any less of her because you know that it was out of character for her to behave in this way.
Say that whenever we behave in an underhanded way, we let ourselves down as well as those that have trust and belief in us, and that can hurt us more than we hurt others.
If you don't give her a hug - I will!
She didn't actually steal it though, did she? If I have understood the OP correctly, your friend's son gave the money to her of his own free will and the only thing she did wrong was hang onto it. Now obviously that is wrong and she should have known better as she was so much older than him, but it's not the same as stealing.
I think grounding for a week and apologising to your friend is plenty. She'll be a teenager soon and you need something in reserve for bigger misdemeanors so don't exhaust all your ammunition on this!
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