I can't work out what to do for the best.

(11 Posts)
BumbleBeeWineGlass Tue 09-Apr-19 11:26:19

2 teens, currently banned from every vein screen related after a while series of general disrespect and not doing basic chores, fighting etc etc.

This has gone in for a long time because despite this ban they have continued the negative behaviour.

They both have very simple chores to do and both just don't bother.

Several times now I've come in when they weren't expecting me in to find they've got round parental controls and have been playing Xbox even though they know it's banned.

I cannot take anything more from them, there isn't anything left to take. So where do I go from here?
We've tried wiping the slate clean but everytime they take the piss! If they're given an hour of Xbox they sneak an extra hour later etc,

Today again it's the same I've gone in the house and they've both been sat on Xbox! Rather than shouting and ranting I just left again and told them I didn't want to speak to them right now.

They called my ex in tears telling him 'Mum has run away'

I think maybe we are find this all wrong, taking and taking and taking until they have nothing to lose so just do what they want but I can't find a balance between giving them freedoms and privileges and sanctions when they break them. It's all such a mess!

OP’s posts: |
LatentPhase Tue 09-Apr-19 11:39:11

Oh dear, poor you.. I got into this negative cycle with dd1 a few years ago. Then I changed tack and things got better.

I heard a good phrase about parenting teens last week that hit home. Parenting teens is about ‘connection not correction’

They see the taking away of screens as punishment and this breaks the connection and sometimes doesn’t solve things and starts a negative spiral.

Are you giving lifts and facilitating their lives? Maybe breezily put and end to that and make it more about mutual respect.

Then when there is a glimmer of positivity try and connect with them more.

LatentPhase Tue 09-Apr-19 11:40:01

Clearly confiscating has no effect anyway they are just waiting for you to leave the house.

Don’t lose your shit about this.. just change your approach.

BumbleBeeWineGlass Tue 09-Apr-19 11:42:39

I have always told them I will facilitate activities and social lives, they both have Cineworld unlimited cards, passes to the local pool, train passes etc. They don't get used.

I don't know how to change my approach to make them understand some behaviours are not ok. I'm in such a negative place with them it's really upsetting.

OP’s posts: |
CaptainNelson Tue 09-Apr-19 11:44:58

I really sympathise. One of my DSs isn't into gaming any more, but the others are really bad. However, they do (generally) do their chores.
Not sure how old yours are, but with my (preteen) I set up a system whereby he earns screen time by doing, well, not even chores, just the basics, eg getting ready for school on time; putting his clothes away; etc. It can be screen time or cash (so he can choose whether to get pocket money or not - he doesn't get both).
I know it's harder with older ones. I often remove the devices completely; I am thinking of getting a lock-up box to put them in because it's impossible to totally hide something.
Could you sit down and properly talk to them? And listen to them? They will almost inevitably feel that you're unreasonable for expecting them to do the chores at the time that suits you, not them, and it may be that if you can find ways to be more flexible on some things, they will also be.
The bottom line is, they don't need a console. If the worst comes to the worst, bin it/sell it.

DameDiazepamTheDramaQueen Tue 09-Apr-19 11:47:05

Do they get a chance to earn back screen time?

BumbleBeeWineGlass Tue 09-Apr-19 11:55:07

They used to get to earn it back but we ended up with them being vile, losing it, panicking and doing 1 chore to earn some back, as soon as they had played that bot they'd earn they'd be vile again because they'd already got the reward.

I'm thinking of sitting down with them and getting them to participate in going back to scratch and making some house rules and what the consequence will be if they're broken to see if that helps.

OP’s posts: |


pollyhampton Tue 09-Apr-19 11:59:06

Can you not remove the whole console (or at least the controllers). I have brought the console with me to work before.

DameDiazepamTheDramaQueen Tue 09-Apr-19 12:01:14

Earning back should involve YOU deciding when they've been polite enough to earn it back so there is no ' I'll be good for one day then I'll get it back' nonsense.

Be very clear and calm and say there is a screen ban at the moment because of xxxx then explain you will allow it back when there is sufficient good behaviour to warrant it but only as and when you say.

Ime it's always best to let teens earn something back or they just think "I won't fucking bother with any the ingredients if I've lost the lot."

Teens are wearing hmmflowers

BumbleBeeWineGlass Tue 09-Apr-19 12:17:36

If I remove the whole console the younger siblings suffer.
DH wants to build some complicated internet system that will generate a new password everyday to be given only when they've deserved it but we both work all day although I'm community based so come and go all day, it would be left to me to deal with all the time.
They struggle with how much we work I think my full time position is quite new but we can't afford to work less sadly.
They used to go to sports camps but they have decided they're too old now but it means spending whole days by themselves..

It is wearing, it's a constant battle wit everything and we never enjoy and nice family time anymore.

OP’s posts: |
BarbarianMum Wed 10-Apr-19 08:46:06

Take the controllers away - or the whole console. The younger children won't suffer that much , it's just an Xbox not oxygen.

Keep it away for a month and concentrate on sorting out their behavioural issues. You could try doubling chores for a month then dropping that back down when they get the message that it's non- negotiable. A month without the Xbox might also help them discover other interests.

Join the discussion

To comment on this thread you need to create a Mumsnet account.

Join Mumsnet

Already have a Mumsnet account? Log in