Dirty notes at school

kayla0604August 12, 2007

My 14 year old DS has a 13 year old girlfriend. I found a note from her calling herself a sex goddess, and using some pretty foul words. I feel I should contact her mother. My DS is very angry with me for suggesting that (what's new right?). My problem is, We are a new family in a small community and sometimes feel like outsiders. The parents here tend to look the other way too often. I caught kids rolling a house and when I contacted the parents they denied it happened because they did not see it. There are so many bad things going on here and I feel like I'm the only one who cares. Do I contact the parent? How do I handle it?

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

It sounds like the parents in your community think that their kids can do no wrong. If you already had a run-in with parents in this community (by the way what is rolling a house mean?) it may be in your best interests not to contact the parents on this issue. In a small town people talk and you do not want to be the center of that talk and have people saying your always in everyones business, or think your kids are perfect and everyone elses are bad etc.

What I would do is make sure that you have open communication with your 14 year old. Also, try to be as involved in knowing where your son goes and if parents are around and so on. Many kids start experimenting at this age and all you can do is reinforce the fact that sexual relationships have consequences (std's, pregnancy, feelings they are not ready to deal with, etc).

    Bookmark   August 12, 2007 at 5:03PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Rolling a house is covering the trees and shrubs with bathroom tissue. My son was involved along with two other boys. My son cleaned up the mess alone. This happened while he was staying the night with a friend.

    Bookmark   August 12, 2007 at 6:14PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

In my childhood we called it TeePeeing. I have to say that I am guilty of doing that when I was 13. Unfortunately, my friends mom was the mayor of our town and me and another friend were sleeping at her house the night we did it. Imagine her moms suprise when the police showed up late at nite because of something we had done when we were out before she came home!

    Bookmark   August 12, 2007 at 7:23PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Gee, what a terrible thing to do.."rolling", haven't I seen that in a movie, is that where the kids got the idea ?

Kayla, I would not phone the parent of the child who wrote the crude note. This could have repercussions for you that you don't want to have to deal with, considering your tenuous position, socially, in the town.

Should you have read the note in the first place ? Maybe your son feels you where snooping in his bedroom, this suggests an element of mistrust on your part.

However, I would talk to your son about standards of behavior, and whether he wants to be friends with someone who speaks like that. I would give it time. It takes years for our children to work out what a good friend is, and what sort of standards are important to them.

I would, of course, be concerned if any laws have been broken.

Keep a close eye on who his friends are, though. I think good parenting is all about vigilance, and fostering empowerment to your child.

Good luck.

Let us know what you decide to do about this.

    Bookmark   August 12, 2007 at 9:01PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Thank you for your responses.

My son has TERRIBLE friends. One was expelled from school for selling prescription pills he stole from his mother. One prints off school reports for his friends on his parents computer. One prints off porn from his parents computer. Now he has a sex goddess girlfriend that uses the F word. I try to provide him with all of the information he needs to choose good friends but it seems to not be working. I am so concerned with him messing his life up at a young age that I think everything else is falling apart.

I don't trust him. Every inch I give him he takes a mile. He lies a lot. We have been to two different counselors. Nothing helps.

As far as laws being broken, it is vandalism, the home owner was very nice and decided to not call the police.

Should I not read a note? I thought it was my responsibility to make sure everything is going ok.

I need so much help!

    Bookmark   August 12, 2007 at 9:57PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

You're in a tough spot...

Where I'm from, and where I live now, rolling or TPing a house is considered a harmless prank -- a mark of the victem's popularity even. If I were to call another parent in our neighborhood and 'tattle' that her kid had TP'd a house, they'd look at me strangely and consider my values very odd... (But personally, I'm with you about making the kid clean it up.) There's a story about a man we knew when I was a kid who reportedly had a heart attack cleaning TP down from the tops of his tall trees. I think it was just a story, but you never know...

About the dirty note -- I'd talk only to your son about it. Make sure he understands your views on pre-marital sex and the risks he'd be taking, including paying 20 years of child support with virtually no say in how the kid would be raised. I don't think I'd call the parents -- but I'd have a heck of a time not commenting sarcastically that the girl in question sounded 'classy'...

Can you get your son involved in some activities where he is likelier to meet a better group of friends? Ideally, one where you can meet the parents also...

    Bookmark   August 12, 2007 at 10:33PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Here also TeePeeing is also a compliment to the popularity of the person being feted. The cheerleaders do it to the houses of the foot ball starting team before a game and if your kid has never had the trees and bushes festooned with toilet paper, you have a kid with no friends.
As for the dirty note, why were you reading your son's mail?
Think about why your son choses criminals for friends, because stealing drugs is a criminal activity....and I suggest you learn the difference between criminal activities and harmless pranks like TeePeeing a friend's house.
Pick your battles and don't make a big deal about small stuff....save your outrage for drugs, porn and theft.
Linda C

    Bookmark   August 12, 2007 at 11:19PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

It's time for lots of conversations with your son. I'm guessing his poor choices are one of the reasons for your reading the note otherwise it wouldn't be the right thing to do. Even children deserve privacy. Now that it's done though, it's time to seriously speak with him about sex and the consequenses of unprotected sex. It's also time to speak with him about your values and why you think it's wrong for 13 year olds to call themselves sex goddesses. (I don't think I would have had a clue at 13 what a sex goddess was ;) It's not going to be easy, but you and your son really need to start communicating in a positive way. You may need to open up the discussion, but start somewhere. Just be honest with him. It's really okay to tell him it's not easy for you to discuss sex with him and understand it may not be easy for him. He needs to feel he can trust you without punishment when he has questions about things like sex or drinking. I've found that sometimes running errands together in the car or driving one of the kids to school gives me a "captive" audience. The child can't really escape. Even if it seems as if he is ignoring you, keep making the effort.

    Bookmark   August 13, 2007 at 12:44AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Yup - TP'ing is a pain in the butt for the homeowner, but on the usually rare occasions that it's done, it's considered a funny prank - even adults driving by will say, laughing, "oh look - they got tp'd!".

I know - sorta stupid, huh? But yes, it's a popularity thing and not meant to be bad. And often parents do insist that the TP-ers and the TP'd kid clean up the house and trees. And the have fun doing that!

Regarding your son's choice of friends, I'm sorry to say that the old cliche seems true: Birds of a feather flock together. Is your son friends with these kids because there aren't any better kids around? Or, are there better kids but he chooses the losers?

Have you considered a private school (if there's one in the area and not cost-prohibitive)? It seems that the best thing you could do would be to remove your son from the situation. Can you move to another town? I know you said you're pretty new where you are, but it may not be the right place for you. Even moving to the next town where (with investigation) you see a better culture/lifestyle might help.

Of course, that is if your son is friends with these kids only because there aren't better ones. If he's choosing the bad ones he'll find them wherever you go.

Parenting is the toughest job in the world. My very best to you as you try to keep your son on the straight and narrow.


    Bookmark   August 13, 2007 at 8:11AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

It is your job as a parent to protect your kids. If that means that you read their notes....so be it! Many times i feel as im the only parent who really cares to be a parent. Most parents want to look the other way or the want to believe "Not my kid!" You are in a tough spot with the note. If i were in your shoes i would let the girlfriend know that you found the note. Ask her if her parents would be upset if they knew she wrote stuff like that. She may think twice about writing another. Good for you for stepping up as a parent. Sometimes we need to protect our kids from themselves.

    Bookmark   August 13, 2007 at 9:38AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

New kids easily hook up with the wrong crowd in a high school. The kids in the wrong crowd are more accepting right off, and it is hard for a newbie to be lonely while the other groups check him out and decide if he meets their standards. Somehow, you need to teach this boy decorum. Develop his sense of what is ladylike in a girl he dates, without seeming like a fuddy duddy. I took on a son who liked only beach bunnies in high school for dating. He got bored with them in 2 weeks and could not figure out why. I told him he was too smart for them, and that he needs to pick a girl who is also kind, caring and would make a nice mother and helpmate. It took awhile, but it did sink in.

    Bookmark   August 13, 2007 at 3:12PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

HEY!!! Regarding the TP'ing! What a coincidence - here's a news video on CNN from today about toilet papering a town! I know this'll get some negative reaction, but it describes what some of us were trying to explain.

And, in the last few seconds of the video, make sure you listen to who is going to clean it up.


    Bookmark   August 14, 2007 at 6:25PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

About the TP'ing.....It was a neighbor's house, an older man with no kids. He was really nice about it. The thing that really got me was that the parents didn't even know the kids were out, or they did and lied to me about it. The other thing is the other kids didn't help clean up.

A new girl called tonight. He might have a new girlfriend!!!! Hopefully a nice sweet girl with parents that care what goes on.

I admit I don't have as many conversations with my son as I should. Since school started he's been at football practice every night until almost 9. Then he has to eat, shower, and sometimes do a little homework. Sometimes I feel like he's my weekend child.

I know I shouldn't worry that this girl is his dream girl....he is 14 and will have many more girlfriends. I just feel like I'm surrounded by parents that allow too much to happen. If she's a sex goddess at 13 what will she be at 16?

Thank you for your help. Thank you for the CNN clip.

    Bookmark   August 14, 2007 at 9:01PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

>> If she's a sex goddess at 13 what will she be at 16?

My guess is, pregnant.

    Bookmark   August 14, 2007 at 9:08PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I would probably leave it be. Kids are getting involved at earlier and earlier ages nowadays, better to make sure they have the information to make a good choice, and know all the options as far as protection.

    Bookmark   August 17, 2007 at 5:41PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

He is lucky to have you as his mum.

    Bookmark   August 18, 2007 at 3:54AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

my little ones are four and five years old. they attend a private school where social and academic standards are held very high. it is unacceptable to "roll" a house as you call it and i can guarantee the authorities here would consider it a criminal act. trespassing? destruction of private property? as for the note, send it to the girl's parents along with one from you. tell them you thought they should see it since you are concerned with her behavior and wouldn't want to see her get hurt. i personally am shocked over the amount of responses you've received suggesting you sweep this incident under the rug. if my daughter ever wrote a note like that you'd be certain her father and i would be interested in seeing it. social standards are learned sometimes from hard lessons. if they are allowed to get away with things then they take that as a cue their behavior is okay. thank goodness the people around our community are willing to parent. GL... mine are still little and i know it will only get harder but i'm willing to do the work whether they like it or not.

    Bookmark   September 5, 2007 at 8:22PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I am just shaking my head at the responses that insinuate that you have no right to read your son's notes!! No wonder there are so many screwed up kids today!

You have every right to read his notes. His is not a self-supporting adult. YOU are responsible for him and his actions. Any responsible parent WILL KNOW what their children are involved in and who they are involved with and if it takes reading notes--then so be it. You are trying to raise him to be a responsible person. When he is an adult and no longer dependent on you, then you shouldn't snoop! But he is still a child. Any harm that he creates--YOU will be responsible for it--financially or otherwise---and this gives you every right to snoop. Bottom line is you are trying to save his life and allow him to have one that isn't being spent in jail years from now. Poo on the "child experts" that say they deserve privacy! Maybe in the bathroom!!

My advice to you since you know he doesn't choose the best of people to hang out with is to stop him from going out when anyone. "Friends" are not friends. They can be someone's worst enemy. Be a parent and start commanding that your child respect you. I have seen too many parents wanting to be "friends" with their children. You are not their friend. You are their parent. You can be 'friends' with them when they become the responsible adults you raised them to be.

    Bookmark   September 23, 2007 at 9:00AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I have a 14 y/o DS, too. He has a short leash. He might tell you I am over-protective. I think the parents of some of his classmates are under-protective.

But, I would not read his notes unless he gave me a reason. I trust him until he gives me a reason not to trust. If he gave me reasons not to trust, suspicious stories, grades dropping, disrespectful attitude, I would read looking for an explanation. I am not actively looking over his shoulder for every potential bad choice. I would rather point out the good choices and the values that lead there. Positive reinforcement, if you want to call it that. I think it's just respectful. When I see really great kids, I watch the parents to learn. There is always an environment of mutual respect between parents and kids.

If I saw kids TPing the house of an elderly neighbor I would get involved. If I knew the kids and their parents, I would have called them, too. I would help the neighbor clean it up and brought my son to help, too. My point would be to teach him that is what you do for your neighbors and for people who were treated unfairly.

If I saw them TPing my neighbor who has teen kids, I would turn the light off and close my door. LOL. When it's done to classmates who will (or have already) get you back it's a harmless prank. That was a common prank where I grew up, I did it and had it done to me. It was laughed about the next Monday at school. The kids who lived there cleaned it up, while our parents laughed at our stupidity.

As for the girlfriend's notes. Like I said, I would not have read them unless there were other circumstances. So assuming there were other circumstances, or I had witnessed another reason to be concerned about the girl, I would ask DS about her.

My DS had a "girlfriend" for a while who I thought was a little needy. He cannot date, he only saw her at school or school events and talked on the phone. But I thought she just called too often. I asked him about it. I was light hearted and said "She has a lot more to say than you do." He would sit and just say "Yeah, uh-huh, no, sorta" every minute or two. He eventually told us he thought she was staying away from her good friends and choosing some who where not good for her. He was worried about her. I told him not to hang out with her new friends. I didn't tell him he couldn't talk to the girlfriend. I just watched closely. Since he coudn't leave the house with her, I wasn't concerned. The girl's family moved, so that solved that.

I believe in the "self-fulfilling prophecy." If you treat a kid like a bad kid, he will be one. If you treat him like a good kid, he is more likely to live up to that expectation. They live up to what we expect of them. If we have high, but reasonable, expectations, express them, and praise them when reached, I think the chances are better. If we have low expectations, that is exactly what we'll get from our kids. If we have no...

    Bookmark   September 23, 2007 at 12:25PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

My sis in law raised her two DD's to adult hood for the most part successfully.

How? She made it her business to be in their business. She only let them hang out with kids whose parents she knew. This is an imperative.

It was the early days of AOL, and she made sure to monitor their internet access and chat contents.

She found a lot of foul information there, from online bullying to very rascist comments. Those friends were banned from chatting with her daughters, and from associating with them.

One can only assume where it could have led if she did not make it her business.

And actually, to underscore her success:
One time she had arranged for her youngest, 12 at the time, to sleep over at a friend's house. The next morning, her daughter said, "I have to tell you what happened last night, even though I know it means you will never let me go to her house again."

Turns out, the mom had partying plans. So she dropped off the two girls to the 10 pm movies, and went off clubbing. The movie theater happened to have a fire scare, got evacuated, and the two girls ended up sitting outside til well after midnight, feeling lost and scared, waiting on her to pick them up. Then - on top of all that, no food in the house. They got up in the morning, had no breakfast, and by the time she got home, at noon, she was very hungry.

The mom's behavior was so inappropriate, even a 12 year old could figure it out.

All that to say: my SIL's attitude of attention to her daughters, what they did online and with their friends, what the parents of the other kids were like, who they dated, etc, was the key to raising two kids safely through years that are now fraught with way more dangers than when I went through them.

    Bookmark   September 24, 2007 at 8:25AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I don't think TPing is that big of a deal. It's considered more of a harmless prank around here. And, I wouldn't even worry "that" much about guys that age printing porn off a computer. They have access to a computer..It's gonna happen. Now, the drugs are a very serious issue. And, the girlfriend...well, it just sounds like he likes the "easy" type girls over the nicer girls. Hopefully, the new one is a nicer type girl.

Not sure how you can change his preferences about girls...but demanding he stay away from certain types of girls and hounding him will probably only add fuel to his fire. I guess his core morals may need to be addressed. No matter where you move him or how many times, if he really wants to, he will find these type people to hang out with. He needs to understand why it's not good for him. Regarding the note..I wouldn't be so certain there isn't a note TO her from him that may be just as nasty, so be a little careful before you make too big of a deal of it unless you are ready to address that. Dirty letters like that often go both ways. Good luck.

    Bookmark   September 24, 2007 at 3:38PM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
Mothers of estranged children....part II
I thought it might ease the posting if I restarted...
parents of estranged adult children
I too have been where all of you are. I am so happy...
New cervical cancer vaccine - You & Your Daughter
My 16 yr old daughter & I are in the process of...
Adult daughter says actions speak louder than words
My Daughter and I have not had the best relationship...
My 21 year old daughter
My daughter has her first boyfriend at 21. Now she...
People viewed this after searching for:
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™