Ok. I need advice. This will be long (probably) – so hang with me on this if you’re good with teen aged-boy-crazy-love-struck-for-the-first-time advice.
My daughter is 14 years old. She will be entering high school in September. She is cute as hell. I’m not just saying that because I’m her mother – – she is cute as hell. Cute face. Perfect hair. Perfect size 6 and a nice set of D-cups to go along with it. She’s got an excellent head on her shoulders, usually. Good grades. Talented musically and in sports. Usually – she’s a good kid.
Every. Parents. Nightmare.
About a month and a half ago – we grounded her ass off the phone and off the Internet. Why? Because for about three days in a row – she woke up late for school and missed the bus. We found out later that she had been on the phone late, late at night. 1am. 2 am.
Once grounded off the phone – – she snuck around and nabbed her brother’s phone. I walked upstairs to her room at 2am and found her. ON. THE. PHONE.
She was talking to her friend. Scott.
Then – she likes to go to the Boys and Girls club after school. She used to go on Tuesday and Thursdays. She’d walk there after school – and then we’d pick her up around 7pm, or so. Sometimes she’d call us earlier and say she was bored and wanted to be picked up early. One night – we went to pick her up at 6:30 – – a little early, but Chris and I were out and about shopping.
We found her not there. At all. We drove around a bit – – checked the park across the street and there she was. Being pushed on a swing.
By her friend. Scott.
I asked her straight out if she was dating this guy. She assured me she wasn’t – – that Scott was just a friend of hers from the club that she’d known for the last 6 years. (she has been going to the club for the last 7 years . . so this was reasonable.)
At this point in her life – I had no reason to believe she’d lie to me. Her and I are very close and she’s never been an ounce of trouble, really.
I gave her a lecture about being where she says she’s going to be unless she wants her mother to go out of her mind with worry. She agreed.
Two days later – she goes to her friend, Kayla’s. She hangs out there a lot. I like Kayla – she’s a very nice and polite girl who is involved in a lot of the same activities as Melissa. Well, it got to be dinner time and Melissa wasn’t home yet. So I called Kayla’s house. I got her mother.
“Um . . no, Melissa isn’t here, Lisa. She hasn’t been here all day. As a matter of fact, Kayla has been gone since this morning at a baptism in Milwaukee. Have you tried calling that Scott boy?” she says.
“Scott?” I say.
“Yea. Apparently, she and this Scott are pretty hot and heavy.” she says.
I cringe. I thanked her and hung up. I’m blind, right? I’m an idiot. I’m in denial.
I’m going to kick her ass.
I find Scott’s phone number in Melissa’s room and call. Scott answers and says, “Yea – her and I hung out all day today and she’s on her way home now.”
Long story short – – she gets home – – she gets yelled at , lectured and then I demand to know why I had to hear about this from someone else’s mother? Why wasn’t she up front with me about this when I asked??
“Because you wouldn’t understand, Mom.” she says.
On dating. Her and I have discussed dating at length. I’ve explained that at 12 and 13 – she wasn’t old enough to date. That, perhaps, once in high school – – her and I could talk more seriously about it. We talked openly about the reasons why. We talk about boys. We talk about sex. We talk about the maturity and responsibility . . . yada yada. We have had very open talks about it.
When it comes time? She sneaks around.
Melissa is in Middle School. This Scott kid is in High School.
Am I overreacting?
Ok – fine. What teenage girl hasn’t snuck around? I did. But this is MY daughter, right?
So I ground her. Now she is grounded to the house. Grounded off the phone. Grounded off the Internet.
A WEEK later – she runs an errand for me. There is a small store at the end of our block – and I needed sugar. It’s a Sunday – I send her down to get sugar. It’s a 10 minute walk there and a 10 minute walk back. After an hour – I get into the car and head down there. No sign of her. . . anywhere.
So. I call Scott. He tells me that he talked to her on the phone just a little while ago and she should be on her way home at this point.
Phone? Did she walk until she found a pay phone? I drive around some more. I find her walking on the sidewalk. She has the sugar. She gets in. I ask, “So – what pay phone did you call Scott from?”
“I didn’t” she says.
“Scott says he talked to you on the phone a few minutes ago. Don’t lie to me.” I say.
“I’m not lying. I didn’t call him on a pay phone. I called him on your cell phone.” she says.
She then pulls my other cell phone out of her pocket and hands it to me. It’s my second cell phone. I use it only for work with Mosaic, Chris’s company – when I do work for them. It doesn’t get used often and mostly just sits on my desk in my office, on it’s charger. She stole my cell phone!
“When did you take this?” I demand.
“About two days ago.” she says.
I blow. Grounded from the phone and she steals my cell phone. Now she’s not only a sneak and a liar . . . but a THIEF as well.
I totally lay into her. I won’t go into it – – but you can only imagine. I talk to her about how this is exactly why she’s not old enough to date. She is not mature enough to date. If she is going to lie, sneak around and steal in order to date – – that is not the way mature people handle things like this. I always told her to come talk to me about these things . . but instead . . she’s pulling all this crap.
If she’s lying, stealing and sneaking around for this guy – – – I gotta wonder what ELSE she’s doing for this guy! And this worries me a great deal, and I tell her so. And I ask her straight out, “Are you sexually involved with this Scott in any way??” She assures me she’s not. She says the most they’ve ever done is kissed each other – – and only a few times.
Do I believe her? Do I lock her up in a box? Do I send her off to a convent?
The next night is her choir concert. Chris and I go. We sit through the whole thing. At the end, Melissa comes bouncing up to us – – all giddy and happy – – and then turns to this kid and says “Mom..Chris – – this is Scott.”
Oh. My. Good. Grief.
Chris doesn’t even look at the kid and just walks away.
I just say “Melissa – let’s go. Now.”
Poor kid. He looks like a nice kid, really. We were incredibly rude to him. But I could not believe the GALL of my kid – -after all the trouble she has gotten into . . . to introduce him to us like all is great and beautiful in her little world!
Next day? Chris logs into his credit card account to view his on line statement.
He sees that MCI charged him $1300.00 for April’s long distance bill. He calls them. He finds out that there were 761 minutes of international phone calls placed to Toronto Canada between the dates of 4/1 and 4/10. Who are we going to question of course?
It seems this Scott kid and his family went on vacation to Toronto in April. Melissa spent 761 minutes on the phone – over the course of various days – – running up $1300.00 in phone bills!
DOES IT EVER END???
Well, she’s grounded until July 1. This has been going on for awhile and she’s been grounded since about April 15th. So from April 15 – July 1st she is grounded. To the house (no more errands for mom, either), off the phone, off the internet.
She is working her lying little butt off around this house doing absolutely every single thing I can think of. She’s not old enough to hold a job down to pay Chris back the phone bill cost – – so she’s doing it with her own sweat and tears.
As for this kid, Scott? She’s been forbidden to see him. She threw a little fit and said “It’s not HIS fault! You shouldn’t hate him because of what I’ve done!”
Of course it’s not his fault. Scott has always been honest with me whenever I’ve called him to find out if he’d seen Melissa. He’s never lied or tried to cover up for her. He seems like a good kid, really. And it’s a shame – because if Melissa was going to start dating – I’d rather her date a kid like this Scott rather than some low-life type. But I told her, “We don’t hate Scott. We don’t know him enough to hate him. However, it’s the way you’ve decided to conduct yourself because of Scott. You obviously can’t handle it. You’ve obviously lost your fucking mind! And somehow – we need to get your mind back where it belongs.”
On my birthday? Scott called. He didn’t’ call to speak with Melissa. He called to speak with me.
“Hello” I say.
“Hi. This is Scott. I just wanted to call and wish you a Happy Birthday. I hope you have a really great day.” he says.
“Umm. Thank you, Scott.” I say.
“Ok. Bye” he says. And hangs up.
On Mother’s Day? Scott called.
“Hello” I say.
“Hi. This is Scott. Is this Melissa’s mom?” he says.
“Yes” I say.
“I just wanted to call and wish you a Happy Mother’s Day, is all. I hope you have a nice day.” he says.
“Thank you.” I say. I hang up.
And today? Chris’s birthday. The phone rings.
“Hi. It’s Scott – is Chris there” he says.
“Yes – but he is on a conference call at the moment. Can I take a message?” I say.
“Can you tell him I called to wish him a Happy Birthday, please?” he says.
“Sure Scott. Thanks.” I say.
“No problem. Bye.” he says. Hangs up.
Oy. Double oy.
Eddie Haskel anyone?
Since the phone bill incident – – we’ve had no further problems from her. She’s been working her little butt off around the house. Keeping a pretty low profile. Sucking up, as required. Has gotten into no other trouble to speak of.
Well. What would YOU do?