Wednesday, October 22, 2008

An Interesting Discipline Dilema

My son, my oldest son? He has been "sneaking out". Grabbing his coat and backback and making a run for it as soon as my back is turned.

I can hear the sighs and groans now. The support. The ideas for disciplining him. Hockey time? Youth events? Wii privileges? Gone. Gone. Gone.

Except? Things aren't quite that easy.

Our dilemma ... my dear son has been leaving the house in the mornings right after I leave for work. Earlier than he is supposed to be leaving. Not by much, but still against the boundaries we had set up so that Son #3 wouldn't be left at home alone.

Where is he going, this sneaky son of mine?

SCHOOL. Yes, school.

The idea of disciplining a child for going to school EARLY? I suppose there are bigger parenting issues in the world.

Still, he looked as guilty as sin when I returned home unexpectedly this morning and found him sprinting down the sidewalk a block from the house a good 10 minutes before he is supposed to leave. ( NOTE: SERIOUSLY when someone makes a nylon that doesn't run within 15 feet of my front door I will enjoy wearing skirts. Until them, I will resent dress code with a passion!)

He THINKS he is in trouble. I made it seem like we would be "chatting" when I got home from work tonight.

Is it bad that I am laughing at him behind his back?


Vanessa said...

That is kinda funny!! What in the world is going to school early for?

Anonymous said...

my DH , the one you met...remember him?? he used to ditch school and go to....

the library. He would leave school and go to the library. School wasn't challenging enough he had to go get more...

I too wonder what G would be going in early for.....a GIRL??

Anonymous said...

My guess is either a girl or he wanted to hang out with friends.

Unknown said...

Well the official explanation is that he knows if he leaves a bit early his friend's mother will pick him up when she drives past and DRIVE him and friend to school so he doesn't have to walk the 3 blocks.

Apparently (and other son confirms this) he has only tried to get a ride this way 3 times before.

Consequence: A written explanation from him as to what we expect and WHY we expect it and what will happen if he violates our trust again.

Andy said...

I can only hope to have this type of problem!!

Anonymous said...

Well it's all very well and good that he's eager to go to the school so much, beats the hell out of him cutting school or going to McD's before he gets there.

The problem here is the commitment to be responsible for his younger sibling, who you both clearly feel should not be at home alone.

So that's the way I'd approach it - he's got to be conscious of not only his 'needs' but the needs of his brothers and that means no leaving early (no matter how desperate you are to complete that extra credit lab project) because your brother's safety and well being come first, sorry.

You're trusting him with more adult responsibilities, and he's got to demonstrate that he's up to those before you give him anything more, like, oh, say, driving your car to a hockey tournament by himself.

As for the consequence, well, that's where Momma knows best...It might be that he might have to do some extra credit babysitting when he'd rather be doing something else to make up for his missed time....

Fun, fun, fun.


Di said...

laugh today because we all know as parents tomorrow we will be pulling our hair out. Consider it a good thing he looked guilty!
Love you!

Lala's world said...

I was all like nooooo at first then I was like oh phew...but still sneaking out is sneaking out!! something I did a little bit of, my sister did a LOT of and we hardly every got caught which leaves me something I am very afraid of regarding my girls!!
k better go check the locks again on my way to bed :) jk...sort of!

Tudu said...

I don't think it is bad that you laugh behind his back. I wish I could get my kids to turn around so I wasn't doing it right in their face. It just doesn't get the point across that whatever they have done is wrong if I am doubled over trying to catch my breath from laughing too hard. Kids can be so much fun.

Unknown said...

Regina -- The thing is he knows and we know that son #3 is perfectly capable of staying at home for the 10 minutes. G definitey says that he is just going to school to "hang out". A bunch of kids were suspended on Friday for "fighting" (stage fighting, filming and posting on youtube) and G wasnt part of that. He says he stays near his locker and there is teacher supervision.

I explained - SLOWLY and without using big words ;) - that our "rules" are to keep him safe. He gets it I think ...

Everyone else :) thanks for the comments. Glad that so far this is our biggest discipline issue.