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If you knew...would you tell


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It would probably be possible to tell them without being too emphatic about it. And yes, given the situation and that this person knows enough about her neighbors to know intimate details (which I certainly don't know about my neighbors), it seems like that's enough relationship to be obligated to share. Just lightly. Could have been someone else, not sure, just what you *thought* you saw. They can figure it out for themselves.

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4 hours ago, bibiche said:

IME kids who have very restrictive parents are more likely to sneak around and/or lie than children whose parents are less restrictive. 
 

And I’m not remotely surprised that you would absolutely tell. 😉 

My parents were fairly strict but in no way abusive. My youngest brother snuck out of the window to test drive my other brother’s car, before youngest had a drivers license. Fortunately my mom caught him one night. If she hadn’t it’s possible he could have been injured or worse. If someone had seen him and not said anything and then he’d been injured I imagine they would have experienced significant regret.

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4 hours ago, fraidycat said:

Kids with non-strict parents will say "Hey, I'm going to ______, I'll be back in at ______."  So, there is no reason to sneak.

I have a hard time believing that young teenage girls will just come out and say, "I'm going out to have sex with my 19 year old boyfriend. Be back in two hours." Or that teens will say, "I'm going out to get drunk or high, steal, or vandalize with my friends."

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Off topic but ...

My girls are 14.  One of them has a history of climbing out the window when angry and sitting on the slanted roof outside her window, which is maybe 18" wide and directly above our cement driveway.  Folks, if you ever see that, please tell me.  Kids can be stupid.  😛

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Let's see at 14 I was sneaking out of the house to smoke weed with boys a few years older than me. No sexual stuff other than making out a bit on occasion.

My parents were not strict. They were very laid back and set very loose rules for me. I snuck out because it was thrilling to be out at 2am and not get home until the sun was coming up. 

All that to say, I don't really know if I'd say anything. Maybe but at the same time I had a friend who snuck out specifically to avoid that late night visit from an abuser. She'd get beat for sneaking out but it was better than what would happen if she didn't. She was up to no good while out but really at that point at least the bad experiences were her choice. So, that knowledge makes me hesitate to know what I'd do

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Posted (edited)
8 hours ago, fraidycat said:

Kids with non-strict parents will say "Hey, I'm going to ______, I'll be back in at ______."  So, there is no reason to sneak.

Sometimes a non-strict parent has a very good reason for not allowing a child to go to (blank).  Let's not make the mistake of thinking that only kids with strict parents make stupid decisions.  

My 14 year old niece has the street smarts of a garbanzo bean and a high conflict relationship with her generally overly permissive (in no sense of the word strict) parents.  Not being strict doesn't necessarily engender a good relationship where the kid is always going to loop mom and dad in on their generally sensible plans.  She's definitely lied and sneaked when what she wanted to do was ridiculous.  I can see it escalating in the not-to-distant future.  

Edited by LucyStoner
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3 hours ago, JumpyTheFrog said:

 

I have a hard time believing that young teenage girls will just come out and say, "I'm going out to have sex with my 19 year old boyfriend. Be back in two hours." Or that teens will say, "I'm going out to get drunk or high, steal, or vandalize with my friends."

Again, only speaking from MY personal experience as a high-school aged teen (16-18) the ones who were getting high were the same ones who either had to sneak out to do so, or had neglectful "don't give a crap what you do" parents. They were "the wild crowd"/rebels.

In my crowd, drinking was not taboo and was supervised in the homes of parents who took away keys at the door and drove kids home, or our parents came to pick us up. So yes, we did say "Hey, we're going to get drunk at xyz's place on Friday, can you get me a 6 pack of beer and drive me?" whether you believe it or not. The rule was no drinking and driving and no getting in the car of anyone who had been drinking. Nobody was bringing weed or other drugs to these gatherings. 
 

Personally, I would have rather died than disappoint my parents or make them lose trust in me, so drugs, stealing, vandalism, etc. were not even entertained as possibilities.  Some of them were having sex w/their boy/girlfriends, some of us weren't. Many were provided condoms and birth control by their own parents hoping to mitigate damage or life-long consequences for teens being teens, and wanting them to be prepared in case hormones happened. 🤷🏻‍♀️

But that is about older teens. In the context of the OP with follow-up information, I did say that I would probably tell the parents, because 14 is still young and the kid seems to be making some questionable, possibly dangerous choices.
 

 

 

 

 

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Posted (edited)

Trigger warning!!!!

Let them know please. I have a friend whose daughter was staying the night with a friend. They snuck out and were cutting through a neighborhood park. The girls were being persued by a group of guys. My friend daughter was caught and g.ng r..ped. She was a young teen and didn't tell her parents. She was a heroin addict within a few years trying to cope with what happened to her. 

Edited by Tap
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50 minutes ago, LucyStoner said:

Sometimes a non-strict parent has a very good reason for not allowing a child to go to (blank).  Let's not make the mistake of thinking that only kids with strict parents make stupid decisions.  

My 14 year old niece has the street smarts of a garbanzo bean and a high conflict relationship with her generally overly permissive (in no sense of the word strict) parents.  Not being strict doesn't necessarily engender a good relationship where the kid is always going to loop mom and dad in on their generally sensible plans.  She's definitely lied and sneaked when what she wanted to do was ridiculous.  I can see it escalating in the not-to-distant future.  

Yes, 14 year olds should still have more limits. When this thread started, the age of the teen was not given, so my earlier replies are in the context that I was envisioning 17ish years old, give or take a year.

Also, the personality/street smarts of the teen AND who their friends are should always be taken into consideration.

I try to aim for middle-of-the-road - neither overly permissive, nor overly strict. Almost every time my kids leave my house or vehicle I tell them "Love you, have fun, be safe, and make good choices..." The unsaid part at the end that has definitely been said before is "because I don't want to have to kick your ass." And by kick your ass, I mean: take away your freedom, make your life a living nightmare with scrubbing walls and baseboards, doing extra yardwork, and making you hang out with Mom all.day.long, every day for weeks on end. We have discussions all the time, comparing and contrasting parenting decisions of their friends' parents and why I do the things I do and what I might do differently, or the same. Which boils down to I trust you to make good decisions until you give me a reason not to, so don't give me a reason not to.

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23 minutes ago, fraidycat said:

In my crowd, drinking was not taboo and was supervised in the homes of parents who took away keys at the door and drove kids home, or our parents came to pick us up. So yes, we did say "Hey, we're going to get drunk at xyz's place on Friday, can you get me a 6 pack of beer and drive me?" whether you believe it or not. The rule was no drinking and driving and no getting in the car of anyone who had been drinking. Nobody was bringing weed or other drugs to these gatherings. 

I don’t actually know why this would be better than the same scenario but with weed. I’d be super pissed if any adult was giving my kid alcohol or marijuana. Both would be illegal. 

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Posted (edited)
51 minutes ago, fraidycat said:

 

In my crowd, drinking was not taboo and was supervised in the homes of parents who took away keys at the door and drove kids home, or our parents came to pick us up. So yes, we did say "Hey, we're going to get drunk at xyz's place on Friday, can you get me a 6 pack of beer and drive me?" whether you believe it or not. The rule was no drinking and driving and no getting in the car of anyone who had been drinking. Nobody was bringing weed or other drugs to these gatherings. 

 

We have a strong familial history of addiction.  Addiction is a disease and isn’t something that is avoided by supervised sampling- in fact the younger people start drinking, the more likely they are to get addicted.  I would come down hard on a parent supplying my kids with alcohol, even at 18.  

I get what you are saying and agree to an extent but I draw the line at anyone supplying my kid because they think I’m too strict to permit it.  People who are permissive about alcohol and kids are either not honest about their own problem drinking or they are unburdened by the realities of addiction.  My brother who ended up addicted?  He’s a 47 year old with a minimum wage job, never graduated from high school and has been a lousy parent to his three kids and an entirely absent “dad” to who knows for sure how many other kids.  I’ve told my sons, nieces and nephews that they don’t have the luxury of experimenting with substances young.  I am quite sure that one of the main reasons I graduated from high school, college and was able to build stability for my family was that I was  St8 edge until well into college.  First time I was drunk (one of two times, lol) was when I was 28.  

Edited by LucyStoner
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47 minutes ago, LucyStoner said:

I would come down hard on a parent supplying my kids with alcohol, even at 18.  

I get what you are saying and agree to an extent but I draw the line at anyone supplying my kid because they think I’m too strict to permit it.  

I agree that is not anyone's place to supply other people's underage kids with alcohol. That goes beyond permissive parenting into overstepping. Just clarifying that we asked our own parents for our drink of choice, then had our parents drop us off at the home(s) where we would consume it, or we would drive there and the adults in the "party home" would collect keys. Then, either the "party parents" would drive us home, our parents would pick us up, or we'd all crash on the basement floor overnight and drive home around noon the next day after sleeping it off.

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1 hour ago, KSera said:

I don’t actually know why this would be better than the same scenario but with weed. I’d be super pissed if any adult was giving my kid alcohol or marijuana. Both would be illegal. 

It wasn't "any adult". It was our own individual parents. Mind you, many of us turned 18 in the spring of grade 12, and we could drive east or west across the border and legally drink in a bar if we wanted to. Drinking age is 18/19 all across Canada.

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2 hours ago, LucyStoner said:

We have a strong familial history of addiction.  Addiction is a disease and isn’t something that is avoided by supervised sampling- in fact the younger people start drinking, the more likely they are to get addicted.  I would come down hard on a parent supplying my kids with alcohol, even at 18.  

I get what you are saying and agree to an extent but I draw the line at anyone supplying my kid because they think I’m too strict to permit it.  People who are permissive about alcohol and kids are either not honest about their own problem drinking or they are unburdened by the realities of addiction.  My brother who ended up addicted?  He’s a 47 year old with a minimum wage job, never graduated from high school and has been a lousy parent to his three kids and an entirely absent “dad” to who knows for sure how many other kids.  I’ve told my sons, nieces and nephews that they don’t have the luxury of experimenting with substances young.  I am quite sure that one of the main reasons I graduated from high school, college and was able to build stability for my family was that I was  St8 edge until well into college.  First time I was drunk (one of two times, lol) was when I was 28.  

Yes. The point is, I think, that it would be helpful to remember that many 'stricter' parents have their own darn good reasons for it.

Perhaps the reason I say, for example, no snapchat for my 16yo (even if her 12yo cousin has it) is because this particular 16yo has significant mental health related issues around types of social media, issues that have caused breaches in trust. It's really not because I'm just old and mean and don't get what's important to kids these days and like to control my child, as if I have nothing better to do with my time than monitor a teenager's phone...

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6 minutes ago, LMD said:

Yes. The point is, I think, that it would be helpful to remember that many 'stricter' parents have their own darn good reasons for it.

Perhaps the reason I say, for example, no snapchat for my 16yo (even if her 12yo cousin has it) is because this particular 16yo has significant mental health related issues around types of social media, issues that have caused breaches in trust. It's really not because I'm just old and mean and don't get what's important to kids these days and like to control my child, as if I have nothing better to do with my time than monitor a teenager's phone...

Totally. 

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I like to think that would confront the child first, honestly, unless I had some reason to think that she was engaged in serious criminal activity and shouldn't get a head's up.

"Griselda, this is the third time I've seen you climbing out that window this month. Unless you've got some amazingly good reason I should keep this to myself, you should know that the next time I see it, I'm going to your Mom and Dad."

As for Tap's tragic anecdote, I really hope that if my kids got hurt when they were breaking the rules, they'd have enough trust in me to tell me anyway and that I wouldn't betray that trust by focusing on their curfew violation or alcohol use (or whatever) instead of the crime that was committed against them. I hope that's the case for all of us, that we've done our jobs as parents so well that our kids know they can turn to us when they need help. If you think that might not be the case, then you need to go back and try to fix that. That's one argument in favor of being less strict and authoritarian and more... not exactly permissive, but authoritative and flexible. You never want your kids to think they can't get help because they'll get in trouble.

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