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AIBU to make him pay?
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cmac76 · 27/11/2021 08:45

I just want to gauge if I am being too mean or not. DS (10) has form for losing things….items of clothing mainly. It was really bad when he was younger. He would regularly come home from school without jumpers, socks, coat, water bottle…whole uniform once and shoes another time (after school clubs). We sometimes found items, sometimes not. I resorted to writing in a sharpie pen inside his bag all the things he needed to come home with. But he would forget to check that 🙄

He’s better now but can still lose things from time to time. I won’t let him wear his ‘nice’ things out when I’m not with him though as a result.

So now he’s lost his warm hat and gloves (plays a lot of football etc) and I’m so fed up.
Do I make him pay to replace a set or just half? He does get very upset about losing stuff (I do get cross) so I feel mean but it’s so annoying! He needs to look after his things!!
He is NT by the way, no issues that we are aware of.

Would you make your child pay at this age?

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Am I being unreasonable?

AIBU

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crazeekat · 27/11/2021 20:05

Yeah I would defo make him pay, he is old enough to learn now and be responsible. I did it with my 9 year old. She would not look after her PS games. Alway scratched, lying under her bed, anywhere but in its case. Some of them were £50 a game so I was going mental. When she asked for new one she was told no. She was told she can buy her own. Well without a lie that game is thee best looked after game in her collection.

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billy1966 · 27/11/2021 19:59

@Wannakisstheteacher

I do. Incredible how fast they stop losing things when the replacements come out of their pocket money/birthday money.

I agree.

Get him to pick out and buy the replacement item.

It does focus them.

My friends child lost his shoes 🤷‍♀️ like how does that even happen. He came out to the car in his socks.

They weren't in the classroom, she never got them back.

He bought the replacement pair and she told him going forward he was replacing stuff.
He still lost the odd thing, but nowhere near as much.
My kids placed huge value on ANYTHING they ever parted with money for.
They may be young but they know the value of THEIR money.
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TractorAndHeadphones · 27/11/2021 19:36

Also to add it’s not really ‘punishing’ . It’s the natural consequence of what happens when you lose things. They cost time and effort to replace. Children don’t really get it.
I didn’t either as a child but as an adult buying my own things… yes it does take me extra effort to keep hold of stuff but I have to do it 😂😂

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TractorAndHeadphones · 27/11/2021 19:31

@Kite22

I wouldn't

2 of my 3 were / are like this.
They don't choose to be. Whether you class it as a "special need" or not, it is something that is part of them / part of their make up. They don't mean to do it, they just struggle with organisational skills.
Yes, I've spent hours and hours and hours over the years scaffolding things for them, and trying to put frameworks into place and I think they help a bit, but, at the end of the day, I'd rather buy cheaper stuff and have plenty of things like hats and gloves than punish them for something they can't help.

I however had friends who grew out of it - around the time they became teenagers and bought themselves expensive stuff Hmm

In any case it doesn’t matter. Stuff costs money. As an adult with ADHD I can’t afford to keep replacing things so have come up with ways to manage.
If he’s losing things only occasionally now I’d say let it slide but otherwise he’ll have to deal with the consequences. As an adult he won’t have you to buy him new things …
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HugeAckmansWife · 27/11/2021 18:27

Just because something doesn't come easy to someone doesn't mean are ND or even if they are, that they shouldn't be helped to get better at it and some of that help can include incentives and disincentives. No need to shout, berate or shame, but a calm chat about budgets, not having bottomless pockets to replace stuff etc is perfectly fine. Add in systems, bags, special places or whatever but address it.

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SoupDragon · 27/11/2021 17:51

@Puzzledandpissedoff

What she actually said was "no issues that we are aware of"

Quite right - and in true MN style she was bound to be made aware of them, instantly and at length
Never mind that OP sounds pretty sensible and has almost certainly thought about these things for herself; the armchair diagnosticians will leap in just the same

If you say so.
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HolidayTime2021 · 27/11/2021 17:15

He is NT by the way, no issues that we are aware of.

Your post suggests otherwise

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Kite22 · 27/11/2021 17:13

I wouldn't

2 of my 3 were / are like this.
They don't choose to be. Whether you class it as a "special need" or not, it is something that is part of them / part of their make up. They don't mean to do it, they just struggle with organisational skills.
Yes, I've spent hours and hours and hours over the years scaffolding things for them, and trying to put frameworks into place and I think they help a bit, but, at the end of the day, I'd rather buy cheaper stuff and have plenty of things like hats and gloves than punish them for something they can't help.

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Puzzledandpissedoff · 27/11/2021 16:44

What she actually said was "no issues that we are aware of"

Quite right - and in true MN style she was bound to be made aware of them, instantly and at length
Never mind that OP sounds pretty sensible and has almost certainly thought about these things for herself; the armchair diagnosticians will leap in just the same

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DeepaBeesKit · 27/11/2021 15:43

I have a few friends who as adults lose things a lot, and complain that its "not their fault" and they try really hard. They are the same friends who are often late.

What I notice is they don't lose the things they really value, and aren't late for the things they can't be late for (flights, hospital appointments and the like).

I can also see that their kids are heading the same way but that their whole ways of living do not prioritise organisation so where would the kids learn it? As families they place low expectations on it from early on, there's no planner on the wall at home, no one labels clothes, things don't have a place where they are always put.

Of course some people have adhd which makes this harder for them, however plenty of people just don't value things enough to be organised about where they are.

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DuckbilledSplatterPuff · 27/11/2021 15:26

@FallonCarringtonWannabe

Fgs i quoted the wrong post Blush I meant to quote this. Organisation is a learned skill. What can you do to put systems in place to help him develop these skills?

I didn’t need someone to teach me that I shouldn’t lose things, I needed someone to teach me how to go about it. What I did with my son was institute as much scaffolding as possible. For example, he would often lose his homework at home so he wasn’t allowed to bring his folder to his desk alone— he had to bring his whole rucksack and it had to stay zipped unless he was sitting at his desk. Your list is a good start but I would also have asked the teacher to remind him to look at it before leaving school (or wherever he was) and had him wear a watch with an alarm to remind him as well. For his keys I used one of those Tile trackers. We had nametags printed with my contact info and put them on EVERYTHING. Even then he sometimes got fed up and didn’t bother to and in those cases he would be required to pay for what he lost. But if he is genuinely trying to do better and if it’s causing him stress to disappoint you I don’t think extra punishment is the way to go. For my son the lesson of how to scaffold his memory in different ways was way way way more valuable than the frustration and disappointment I received from my mum when I was already so frustrated and disappointed in myself. Your son may have mild ADHD or it may just be a developmental stage but either way he needs support not punishment

I thought @Meowwwwwww s post was a good point.
Also making him pay from his savings, when he's actually been good about saving is a disincentive to continue that.
I know that they do feel terrible about losing things and very stressed as they get told off at school and told off at home and this means that they are focusing on that and not on making sure they have their stuff. Its far better to work with them on how to prevent losses, far more effective than scolding or punishing as some pps have said.

We did things like had "stations" around the house which is where their own coats, hats, etc ( life is so much easier in summer!) so they can be found again in the morning in time. This was to train them from scattering things in different rooms.
And a "bag unpacking ceremony" so that homework wasn't found at the last moment in the morning and so that you could instigate immediate "searches" for the missing stuff as soon as possible, instead of finding out the night before next week's lesson.

We also had separate drawstring nylon bags for things like Football kit or Swim kit... so that everything could go away in the right bag when it got brought home and I could see if they'd got all of it - and they could bring the right things in (which is often a problem that equipment losers also had) Also a check list in the bag which they could use (not sure they did but it was there if they needed it).
It also meant that when changing and unchanging they had the drawstring bag at the ready to stuff the school uniform into (You take it off, you put it in the bag) so that things didn't get left on floor or on benches and grabbed by some other hopeless soul which is often how the items get lost in the first place since they rarely check for name tags. We had several times when someone else had the same shoes took home DCs without realising and left a much smaller pair by accident. These steps make a difference actually.
and everything single thing labelled as others have suggested, as did buying second hand replacement kit at school fetes or where ever they sell it so that you have a cheap backup for emergencies.
The idea of setting an alarm to give a quick check is a good one.
If it helps they do grow out of it, but Age 10-13 seem to be the worst years.
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TractorAndHeadphones · 27/11/2021 14:23

*could be present in a large number of

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TractorAndHeadphones · 27/11/2021 14:21

@Puzzledandpissedoff

Quite refreshing that it took a whole 5 posts this time before someone mentioned ADHD - and this despite his own mum being quite clear that he doesn't have it

Since he has the funds it's really quite simple; make him pay, and only start looking for other reasons if it doesn't work

Agree with this. ND traits are present in most of the population but it’s a critical mass of them that lead to a diagnosis.
Fair enough to mention the possibility but if nobody is aware of other issues a psychiatrist isn’t going to give him a diagnosis solely based on losing things. Although since the OP has used the term NT I’m assuming that she’s quite clued up as opposed to posters who have never even heard of neurodiversity. I could be wrong though.
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SoupDragon · 27/11/2021 13:55

Quite refreshing that it took a whole 5 posts this time before someone mentioned ADHD - and this despite his own mum being quite clear that he doesn't have it

What she actually said was "no issues that we are aware of"

I would have said that about DS. Turns out he might get diagnosed with ADHD as an adult.

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Inthewainscoting · 27/11/2021 13:50

On top of what PPs have said ... buy a shedload of elastic and sew gloves and hat to his coat (and see if there is more on those lines you could do).
If he complains, say you are happy to not do it with anything that is cheap enough to be replaced from his next week's pocketmoney, WHICH IT WILL BE IF HE LOSES IT, but hold firm on anything dearer until he hasn't lost anything in over a year !

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Puzzledandpissedoff · 27/11/2021 13:36

Quite refreshing that it took a whole 5 posts this time before someone mentioned ADHD - and this despite his own mum being quite clear that he doesn't have it

Since he has the funds it's really quite simple; make him pay, and only start looking for other reasons if it doesn't work

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Warblerinwinter · 27/11/2021 13:26

@WildStallyn

My DS is nearly 9 and exactly the same. Every day he comes out of school with ay least one thing missing. Some things he finds the next day, others he doesn't. We actually told him this week that he can pay for replacements in future. He does get pocket money which he mostly saves. I think at the moment he doesn't care. Maybe when we take a month's money off him for a replacement fleece or whatever he will start to make more of an effort.

As I’ve said , the sometimes he finds them statement is a reflection on whether he can be bothered to look properly even if it takes an hour or two. I’d be more inclined to drag him back to school or wherever he lost the item and say don’t come out until you find it or you’ve spent at least 60 mins looking for it
Stuff just doesn’t vanish into thin air.
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Warblerinwinter · 27/11/2021 13:23

@BurbageBrook

I think you’re being mean to tell him off, even meaner to punish him. It’s not deliberate.

Ah but that’s the problem. NOT losing things is a deliberate act. It’s easy to just put something down and then forget, it is a deliberate act to put it away in a place you won’t forget it
Some people go through life believing it is some sort of special skill or trait to not loose things or remember where you put things. It’s not special- it is a conscious thought of “nope I won’t just randomly dump this here cos it’s easier, I’ll put it here where it belongs/I won’t forget it”
Short of mental illness or special needs it actually smacks of laziness. If someone is always then replacing the item , it doesn’t even make them feel the pain of actually properly hunting out the item or finding out the “cost” (£ and sheer inconvenience) of not thinking about where you put stuff consciously.
Forgotten things don’t vanish into thin air: they’re about unless someone steals them . The ops son needs to be held more to account to find them even if that takes hours to learn it is far better to consciously think about where he puts his stuff.
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Snaketime · 27/11/2021 13:12

Are you sure he is NT. I always lost/left things when at school, books, bags, purses, jumpers etc and everyone thought I was selfish and just didn't care about the stuff and the sot of the items. I have since very recently found out I have ADHD.

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Viviennemary · 27/11/2021 12:43

No I don't think he should pay. He doedn't have a bad attitude. You nerd to help him yo be more organised not punish him.

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Doubledenimrock · 27/11/2021 12:41

I second ADHD/ Dyspraxia. This was my son at 12. It has got better but he just loses other things now, his product design folder, money, pencil case, laptop..

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WildStallyn · 27/11/2021 12:40

My DS is nearly 9 and exactly the same. Every day he comes out of school with ay least one thing missing. Some things he finds the next day, others he doesn't. We actually told him this week that he can pay for replacements in future. He does get pocket money which he mostly saves. I think at the moment he doesn't care. Maybe when we take a month's money off him for a replacement fleece or whatever he will start to make more of an effort.

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ittakes2 · 27/11/2021 12:40

I agree with others losing stuff this much is an ADHD or ADD (inattentive ADHD) trait. Is he also very messy and does his homework last minute?

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FortunesFave · 27/11/2021 12:33

This was my DD and she got a diagnoses of ADHD at 12.

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dontletthemugglesgetyoudownn · 27/11/2021 12:31

I lost things repeatedly at school. Turns out I had adhd I wasn't diagnosed til uni! I still lose things constantly now but I'm better than I was now I know why

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