What to say to 17 yo about this?(9 Posts)
DS1 has gone out on his bike- we didn't realise he'd actually gone out until diner was ready as he's often doing things to his bikes in the garage.
DH text him to aak where he is, and to say diner was on the table. A text back said he's gone to Birmingham.
We presume to a gig, and guess with a acquaintance he was at school with.
DH then text him to ask if he has enough money - no reply, which I've taken as "of course I have you stupid parents I wouldn't have left the house otherwise"
DH and I had planned to go out this evening, but DH has now said he'll not have a drink just incase SS misses the last train.
Let's just say dinner was a little tense as DH and I have both imagined the very worst that could ever happen. DS is on the autistic spectrum- not sure if that makes a difference to our panic.
He's nearly 18; is it reasonable for him to go off without telling us? Or should I tell him we were worried?
From posts about teens that I read on here I think I live in a different world to most of mumsnet (although I am in Ireland, perhaps that's one reason), so I may have an opposing opinion to everyone else. Imho its absolutely not ok to head off and not say anything, it's also not ok to be rude to you like he was in the text. I have a ds who will be 18 on Friday, he would always let me know where he's going and when he'll be home and he would definitely never call us 'stupid ' , not to our faces anyway ;).
He would never be rude to our faces - he's very quiet and polite. Too quiet it seems.
DH has transferred £20 into his account and texted him to let him know.
I think it's just "manners" to say you are leaving the house if you are aware a meal is being prepared that you would normally be eating!
I explain this to my teens ( well actually now 19 and 21- although the elder is 90% living away) that this is just a common courtesy people sharing a house extend to each other. I don't need to know where they are going or with whom- a simple "I'm off now, don't wait up I've got my key" is all I need. DH and I do the same to each other- that's what I tell them.
It is not reasonable for an adult or near-adult to rush off without telling the people he shares a household with or giving advance warning that he will not be there to eat a meal you have cooked for him.
It would be unacceptable rudeness in a partner, or in an aunt who was staying over Christmas for that matter, so it is unacceptable rudeness in a nearly-grown-up teenager. If you want to be considered an adult, you need to behave like an adult.
I would not punish for this, but I have would certainly have a firm conversation about the kind of standards expected by adults.
It's common courtesy to let other people you are sharing a house with know what your plans are - especially if you are missing a meal, or will be out until late.
It is difficult for us to know how much of your son's behaviour is related to his autism though. In my understanding, a lot of people who are on the spectrum, find it difficult to understand that other people are not thinking / do not know the same thoughts as they do, so it might not occur to him, that you wouldn't know he was out, without him telling you, as he knew where he was going. Now, I don't know if that sounds right for your ds, and clearly don't want to be telling you about how your ds thinks, but might it be that coming in to play ?
I think he realised while out (after DH, and I suspect his younger brother) texted him that he had been rude and we might be worried. - He declared to DH on his return "Im fine!" without being asked.
I've asked DH to talk to him to say how worried I was, and how it would be polite to let us know he wasn't going to be in for dinner.
DS is in a stonking bad mood though....(it always happens in winter and when he's growing: I knew it was coming because he was really happy and eating loads, then bam- the growth spurt misery. I look forward to the day he's fully grown and is always pleasant!) So it may be sometime before the conversation happens. Until then we're all walking on eggshells.
He definitely should have told you he was going, its just courtesy. I would be mightily pissed off of 37 year old dh did this, never mind one of the dc!
I always let my DS know if I'm going out and my anticipated time of return and would expect my DS to reciprocate. It is just common courtesy if you live in the same house - and especially if you are likely to be preparing food.
Glad your DS got back safe but you do need to sit down with him and spell out expectations particularly as he has ASD.
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