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How much freedom?(6 Posts)
Parent of 17 year old teen and trying to get the balance right with how much freedom they should have.
It varies massively in my group of friends, going from virtually managing every minute of their time to not knowing where they are half the time.
My teen, I like to know if they're going to be home or not, where they are planning on going and if I'm cooking dinner for them. Also expect college work to be kept up to date, but don't insist on this as in do the work or you cant go out.
Friends are welcome round whenever as long as I know in advance, a WhatsApp of home in 10 is it ok if X comes back with me is all I need.
Come unstuck a bit over helping out in the home, but I remember that from when I was a teen. Also, being on time to things like college, teen has an interesting concept of time, seems to disappear without them even realising!.
Just wondering how others find a good balance?
My 13 year old just brings mates around without telling me, and usually goes around the city without me knowing his exact location, maybe loosen up on some of your rules?
A good balance is what works for you and your family.
Mine’s 16yrs old and how long I know where she’s going ,that she’s back in time (10:30pm at weekend) and her school stuff is done , I’m happy.
Housework I happily do it myself, including her room, but she’ll help if I ask her. Regarding having friends over , mine always asks beforehand so haven’t got that problem.
It seems to me that you got a good balance 👍
Mine tell me who they’re seeing and usually if people are coming round. DS - 15 - is a bit crap at coming back at the right time - he knows dinner is 7pm so that is annoying but tonight he’s only just got in so I didn’t bother making him dinner!! He got a quick dinner when he got in. He did text at about 7 to say he was at the barbers after seeing friends!
They would never let me manage their time although I do nag(!) about schoolwork - DS has promised not to go out tmw and work.
They will tidy their rooms to a certain degree and help clear after dinner a few times a week.
I think there's a big difference in parenting a 17 year old than a 13 or even 15 year old. Particularly if that 17 year old is earning their own money (mine is) I'm not sure what sanctions you can put in. Like you, I like to have an awareness of if they are in for a meal or what time they will be back, and I think that's just courtesy. But if the DC is nearly 18 and they choose to come back at 2 in the morning, apart from making sure they have a key and telling them to be quiet, I'm not sure what else you (I) can do. I'd love to be able to insist that DS returned by 11 pm but I don't see that is possible with someone who is nearly adult and earning their own money.
I think what you are doing sounds fine. I think it's reasonable to have a rough idea where your children are and when they will be home. I expect this of my partner too, it's just polite. I think it's less of 'you need to be home at this time' and more 'let me know when you will be home roughly' so that you can plan dinner, not worry etc. I also think if he has college the next day, it's reasonable to say he should be home at a reasonable time. As long as there's no reason to think he's getting in any trouble I think other than that you have to let them get on with their lives, hopefully they will talk to you about what's happening in their lives.
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