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#958961 - Thu Jan 03 2013 12:19 AM What a great mum!
Tizzabelle Offline
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Registered: Sun Jan 17 2010
Posts: 2109
Loc: Sydney NSW Australia         
http://www.smh.com.au/digital-life/mobil...2c68e.html#poll

A 13 year old boy received an iPhone for Christmas. He's thrilled. Mum's happy he's happy. The story made the news because of the contract they made about the usage of the phone. I love it. It's letting him have some responsibility and freedom but also let's him know there are rules to abide by, and consequences to bad behaviour. I have a feeling this kid will turn out pretty well.

I sent this story to a mate of mine who has two lovely boys, 10 and 12 years. She sounds just like the mum in the story. Tough but fair, always ready for a laugh while letting her boys gradually stretch their wings in this world under her guidance... without being a helicopter parent wink Her boys are lovely, polite, kind, and considerate children. My mate emailed me back.. she got to the last item on the contract and started crying.. it's exactly how she feels. smile
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#959026 - Thu Jan 03 2013 09:07 AM Re: What a great mum! [Re: Tizzabelle]
guitargoddess Offline


Registered: Mon Jul 09 2007
Posts: 33844
Loc: Ottawa Ontario Canada         
I was just reading that on another site.

Yes good and responsible mother, but I'll never believe a 13 year old 'deserves' an iPhone.
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#959029 - Thu Jan 03 2013 09:25 AM Re: What a great mum! [Re: Tizzabelle]
Tizzabelle Offline
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Registered: Sun Jan 17 2010
Posts: 2109
Loc: Sydney NSW Australia         
I'm sure if he does something to "undeserve" the phone it'll be confiscated. My mate with the two boys gave both of them an iPod Touch for Xmas. They both know.. really know... that if they break it, it's lost etc, they will have to save to get a new one. They cherish them, but we'll see how long the novelty lasts wink

A mate of mine asked me when he should get his daughter a mobile. I thought about it and said that at present (she was 9), she wouldn't go anywhere without an adult so she didn't need one. When she starts going somewhere without an adult (movies, shops etc with friends) then it might be a good idea. Public phones are hard to find these days (in Oz anyway) and it's hard to know who to trust. Sadly, these days, it's probably safer to ring mum, dad, aunt etc if you're stranded or have some trouble. smile
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#959035 - Thu Jan 03 2013 10:29 AM Re: What a great mum! [Re: Tizzabelle]
dsimpy Offline
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Registered: Sun Jan 24 2010
Posts: 447
Loc: Belfast Ireland
There's quite a lot to this contract that's thoughtful and nice, but I think it would have been (a lot) better if she'd actually negotiated it with her son rather than imposing it. He's 13, he certainly needs guidance and direction, BUT at 13 he has his own experiences and opinions that she should have built into any contract.

I don't like the fact that it's a 'gift' BUT she 'owns it'. He can't bring it to school (and should sometimes leave it at home) but these might be the very occasions he needs to contact his parents in an emergency.

And most worrying of all is rule 6: "If it falls into the toilet, smashes on the ground, or vanishes into thin air, you are responsible for the replacement costs or repairs. Mow a lawn, BABYSIT, stash some birthday money. It will happen, you should be prepared."

He's 13, a child forgodssake! What sort of responsible parent would let him babysit another child at that age?!

Many other parts of the contract seem fine to me - but it would have been better if she'd talked to her son first. cool
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#959041 - Thu Jan 03 2013 11:45 AM Re: What a great mum! [Re: Tizzabelle]
Santana2002 Offline
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Registered: Mon Apr 14 2003
Posts: 8298
Loc: France
Like dsimpy the gift that is still 'owned' by the giver kind of shocks me, and I think that's just plain wrong. That she has rules is great, that the kid buys into them is even better, but some of them are going a little too far.

I agree that if he loses or breaks it, it's his hard luck and his responsibility to replace it. That's the rule I have with my own teenagers. Nowadays kids get money for birthdays, christmas, doing well in exams and lots of other occasions. Saving is a skill that needs to be learned too. Teaching them to be responsible for their belongings is a parental obligation. I think it teaches them to appreciate the real value of what they own, what other people have worked hard to pay for for them. Even if it takes them several months to save enough to replace or repair the item the lesson learned is invaluable. However, I would be flexible in that if they item was stolen or damaged not due to the youngster's lack of care or attention I would be prepared to take on board a portion of the replacement costs.

As for babysitting at 13, I really don't see where the problem is so long as it's not an all day, including meals, babysitting job, or an overnight one. At 13 most kids are well able to supervise a youngster who is either in bed, getting ready for bed, watching TV or playing on their console, doing homework or playing with siblings or friends in a home environment. My own teenagers regularly supervise, for short periods of time, my youngest, and have done for several years.

As for the 'right' age for a kid to have a mobile at all? It depends on the child's situation. If they are still in the home and family environment I'm totally against 8 and 9 year olds having a phone. They just don't need one. My own kids got a mobile at the ripe old age of 16, when they started to go to lycée. At that age they no longer went to the village school and are dependant on busses and public transport. I want them to be able to contact me if they need to, and I want to be able to contact them should I need to.

In a bigger city a child may perhaps be taking a bus to school from 10 or 11, and in that case I believe a phone could be justified. Younger than that, even if they are relying on public transport, they are usually well supervised and shouldn't need the facility of a mobile.


Edited by Santana2002 (Thu Jan 03 2013 11:46 AM)
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#959050 - Thu Jan 03 2013 01:18 PM Re: What a great mum! [Re: Tizzabelle]
guitargoddess Offline


Registered: Mon Jul 09 2007
Posts: 33844
Loc: Ottawa Ontario Canada         
Quote:
I want them to be able to contact me if they need to, and I want to be able to contact them should I need to.

In a bigger city a child may perhaps be taking a bus to school from 10 or 11, and in that case I believe a phone could be justified.


Yes and in that case, a regular makes-and-receives phone calls phone would suffice. With an iPhone, the fact that it's a phone is almost an after thought. I just got one a couple months ago, and to actually make a phone call with it, you have to go through at least three different screens. The phone icon isn't even in the first row on the menu.

A smartphone is more a handheld computer than a phone and I don't understand why so many parents think young kids 'need' them. Many parents agree that kids' computer use should be monitored or they should only use the computer in a common room of the house so there's at least some supervision - so why give them a toy that allows them to access the internet anywhere and everywhere? Even if they're not doing anything 'bad', it's expensive. My 15 year old cousin last month rang up a $400 bill by going way way over her data limit. She's also on her EIGHTH iPhone because she has dropped and broken and/or lost seven of them. At 15 I don't think it's ridiculous for her to have a cell phone, but it's ridiculous that she got a smartphone at age 12. Obviously she wasn't up to the responsibility.
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#959107 - Thu Jan 03 2013 05:22 PM Re: What a great mum! [Re: Tizzabelle]
Copago Offline
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Registered: Tue May 15 2001
Posts: 14130
Loc: Australia
My son has to go to boarding school when he's 12 so will have a mobile phone then but I don't think it will be a smart phone. That might be the next step if he can prove to be responsible with the normal phone.

I don't think I have a problem with the whole "it's a present but it's mine" angle. I think it is just to give her the control over it. My son bought himself an iPad with money he had saved (and saved and saved ... and saved some more) and I told him that I would have ultimate control over what he put on it (apps and such).

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#959129 - Thu Jan 03 2013 07:23 PM Re: What a great mum! [Re: Tizzabelle]
Christinap Offline
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Registered: Sun Jul 27 2008
Posts: 1596
Loc: Essex UK
Don't you think though that it is a sad comment on the world that a parent actually acts like a parent and it makes international headlines?

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#959133 - Thu Jan 03 2013 09:06 PM Re: What a great mum! [Re: Tizzabelle]
ren33 Offline
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Registered: Thu Sep 30 1999
Posts: 11224
Loc: Fanling
  Hong Kong      
I so agree with you! And why is her action not the norm?
I am convinced that many parents, especially here in Asia, are afraid of their children, and that has nothing to do with the theory that it is because of the one child policy: that doesn't exist here in Hong Kong but parents are still really afraid of setting down rules. Even some teachers here are afraid of scolding a child who commits a misdemeanour(sp?) in school.
I work in a Sixth form college here and we have rules about attendance. I have lost count of the number of cases where I have phoned the parents of an absentee to ask where they are, and the parent has said "Oh he is still asleep, he gets so cross if I wake him!".
No disrespect intended to your cousin's parents GG, but why are they repeatedly buying her new iphones when she breaks them? Why did she run up such a high bill?Who paid it? Many parents deserve what they get and it would be wonderful if there were more mothers like the one in the article.
At college I was taught that children need guidelines or they are not happy. There should be lines over which children should not cross and they should know it and it should be used consistently, or they are confused, and so rebel.
Finally (while I am in mid rant) My Mum always said that no child should be allowed to make an adult's life uncomfortable.I bear that in mind when I see a child screaming and kicking on the floor of a shop, or I hear a parent giving excuses for the out and out disgraceful behaviour of a quite obviously spoilt brat.
End of Rant.
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#959330 - Fri Jan 04 2013 10:21 PM Re: What a great mum! [Re: Tizzabelle]
Lones78 Offline
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Registered: Mon Apr 27 2009
Posts: 1401
Loc: Forrestfield Western Australia
Ren - I totally agree with everything you have just said smile

As a young mother, I find it difficult to know the 'correct' way to discipline my children when they are misbehaving in public. My oldest is an angel but my youngest is an absolute monster.

A couple of weeks ago, my youngest was using some not so nice language to insult her older brother. I'm sure the entire grocery store heard me yell at her to stop using that kind of language and not speak to her brother in that way. The elderly gentleman next to me who I nearly deafened (I DID yell at her from the other end of the aisle blush) gave me a huge smile and a nod - I don't think he'd seen too many children get into trouble in public for a long while!

I decided that I've had enough of people's judgement when I discipline my kids in public (which doesn't really happen that often). I also don't care about looking like an idiot either. I know now that there are plenty of parents out there watching or listening to me and thinking 'you go girl!'.

Right from when I had my kids, they have had boundaries. 'No' is heard more often in my house than 'yes', but that's been mainly since my daughter was born. My son knows our rules and boundaries and knows exactly how far he can push. My daughter also knows where the boundaries are, she just constantly tries to push them further!

I love my kids to bits but I feel rules and discipline will definitely help them to have structured, successful lives as they grow up. I'll find out in 10-15 years if I've succeeded as a parent - and hoping like heck my kids are drug-free and not in jail!
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#959338 - Fri Jan 04 2013 11:25 PM Re: What a great mum! [Re: Tizzabelle]
Copago Offline
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Registered: Tue May 15 2001
Posts: 14130
Loc: Australia
I just think that consistency is the key, and it seems that's what you're doing, Lones. I'm sure they'll turn out great smile
I have a button pusher at times too and even though he knows the consequences he just can't help himself sometimes too. I have smacked him at times - usually if there is danger involved - but the disipline that works best with mine is taking away a favourite toy/gadget. He'll get a warning and if he keeps going it's gone. Simple.

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#959579 - Sun Jan 06 2013 09:01 PM Re: What a great mum! [Re: Tizzabelle]
Lones78 Offline
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Registered: Mon Apr 27 2009
Posts: 1401
Loc: Forrestfield Western Australia
I've found the threat of locking my daughter in her room works well. She absolutely hates being cooped up so just the threat is usually enough to settle her down. I am definitely NOT looking forward to her teenage years!
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#959599 - Mon Jan 07 2013 06:33 AM Re: What a great mum! [Re: Tizzabelle]
ren33 Offline
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Registered: Thu Sep 30 1999
Posts: 11224
Loc: Fanling
  Hong Kong      
Lones, I can't say that I would agree with you on that one. I have never thought that instilling fear solves problems.
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#959602 - Mon Jan 07 2013 06:57 AM Re: What a great mum! [Re: Tizzabelle]
ClaraSue Offline
Forum Champion

Registered: Sun May 18 2003
Posts: 7837
Loc: Arizona USA
Quote:
Don't you think though that it is a sad comment on the world that a parent actually acts like a parent and it makes international headlines?


My thought exactly. But in order for the media to get a hold of this story, somebody had to let them know. It makes me wonder if the parents sent the information to the media with the thought of "see how good I am?"

edited to add: And while I applaud the contract, why do people feel the need to have validation for being responsible parents?


Edited by ClaraSue (Mon Jan 07 2013 07:01 AM)
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#959659 - Mon Jan 07 2013 03:22 PM Re: What a great mum! [Re: ren33]
guitargoddess Offline


Registered: Mon Jul 09 2007
Posts: 33844
Loc: Ottawa Ontario Canada         
Originally Posted By: ren33
No disrespect intended to your cousin's parents GG, but why are they repeatedly buying her new iphones when she breaks them? Why did she run up such a high bill?Who paid it?


Heck if I know. For the new phones when one gets broken, they have some insurance policy built into the contract with the mobile carrier, that replacing a lost or broken phone costs about $50, rather than the full price of a new one, but still after multiple replacements the fee adds up. I'm not sure if she pays it or her parents do, but I'd guess that she doesn't, since she immediately spends any money she gets. Not sure what kind of arrangement they came to about the ridiculously high bill. Again, she has no money to speak of so I'd guess they paid it and are working out some kind of allowance-deduction or similar for her to 'repay' them. As for the running it up, it "wasn't her fault", you see. She thought she had unlimited something or other and didn't.
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#959741 - Mon Jan 07 2013 08:49 PM Re: What a great mum! [Re: Copago]
Tizzabelle Offline
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Registered: Sun Jan 17 2010
Posts: 2109
Loc: Sydney NSW Australia         
Originally Posted By: Copago
I just think that consistency is the key, and it seems that's what you're doing, Lones. I'm sure they'll turn out great smile
I have a button pusher at times too and even though he knows the consequences he just can't help himself sometimes too. I have smacked him at times - usually if there is danger involved - but the disipline that works best with mine is taking away a favourite toy/gadget. He'll get a warning and if he keeps going it's gone. Simple.

My best friend does that. She's consistent, doesn't tolerate nonsense and lays down the law when she has to. The rule is no bouncing or throwing balls in the house. Her 9 year old did, so she took it and threw it in the bin. It doesn't make her happy to be the disciplinarian at times, but she knows someone has to be. I have to say there's a lot of love and laughter in the house too and she is the perfect woman to raise two sports loving, active boys. She finds flatulence jokes as funny as they do! Whether it's good luck or good management, or probably a bit of both, both boys are a delight.

The line from the story that broke her up was this:
Quote:
You will mess up. I will take away your phone. We will sit down and talk about it. We will start over again. You and I, we are always learning. I am on your team. We are in this together.
That is exactly how she feels, and she hopes her boys know it because they will make mistakes along the way.. they're only human. smile


Edited by Tizzabelle (Mon Jan 07 2013 08:54 PM)
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#959796 - Mon Jan 07 2013 11:29 PM Re: What a great mum! [Re: ren33]
Lones78 Offline
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Registered: Mon Apr 27 2009
Posts: 1401
Loc: Forrestfield Western Australia
Originally Posted By: ren33
Lones, I can't say that I would agree with you on that one. I have never thought that instilling fear solves problems.


It's not often I have to threaten my daughter with being locked in her room - but it's a threat that works. I also figured it's better for my sanity and her health for me to lock her in her room for 5-10 mins than giving her a good hiding! smile
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#966301 - Sat Feb 09 2013 01:44 PM Re: What a great mum! [Re: Tizzabelle]
Jazmee27 Offline
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Registered: Tue Mar 09 2010
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What works for one may not work for another.
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