Email from BM

caphillsmAugust 10, 2010

DH got the email below from BM last night. Before I absolutely lose it, I would very much appreciate any of your thoughts/comments. Please note that SS2, referred to in the note, just turned 16.

Dear XX (my DH)

I wanted to see if you have any thoughts about this before I institute it:

"Johnny" has kicked butt this summer. There's never been a morning where I had to drag him out of bed to go to school or work. He's up and 'at-em' and ready for school each day. (Well, a few times he shut off the alarm, but no big deal.) He's done a great job at school (his grade is a 96 in English 11, as a few days ago) and heads off to work immediately after, often for a long 8.5 hour shift ... all without so much as a grumble. On the contrary, he loves it.

Very impressive, and very mature.

So I thought that in appreciation for his mature actions, I'd lift one of his restrictions to show that I've seen his maturity: no more restriction on R-rated movies or M-rated games. (This restriction would have lifted at 18.) I know that "Johnny" would really be pleased to have this restriction lifted, and therefore I hope it would be a learning-moment, where he sees that he is rewarded for showing such maturity and working hard.

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parent_of_one

I am glad he is doing well at school, works and shows maturity. Now on your topic...These ratings are for 17 and older not 18, if you are in the US.

R-rated movies are under 17, not 18. Before 17 he can still watch it but with parents, the whole restriction is on when the child is without adults present. When is he turning 17? If few months from now then I don't see much issue here.

M-rated games are also for 17 and older. Again if he is turning 17 any time soon then I don't see any issue, if he just turned 16 then mom is rushing. I think the question is how soon he'll be 17, if just few months then I don't see any problems here. If it is longer then dad might suggest to wait a bit longer and suggest some different reward for now.

    Bookmark   August 10, 2010 at 9:32AM
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mom2emall

I am not sure why you are upset over this. The letter seems reasonable to me. I think its great that she has noticed his mature behavior and wants to reward him. I don't know many 16 year olds who spend their summer working and taking summer school without any complaints. Some people on here post of twenty somethings who refuse to do either!

So please explain why this upsets you so we can understand. I must be missing something somewhere.

    Bookmark   August 10, 2010 at 10:20AM
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parent_of_one

I think OP thought the age limit is 18 (not 17 as is the case) and he is only 16 and she worries he'll be exposed to mature material? Some parents are very adamant about rated stuff, I honestly wasn't that particular about movies and DD never played video games.

    Bookmark   August 10, 2010 at 10:38AM
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caphillsm

I guess I just be completely old fashioned or out of touch. Rewarding someone with more access to violence just doesnt compute for me. What about lessons for a desired activity or funds toward a trip/adventure? His older brother plays video games on average 6-8 hours per day. When he was "punished" it dropped to 4, which nearly killed him.

I guess I am just remembering sports and lessons and 4-H and training the dog for shows, and saving money for an oversees trip. Life felt to full. Somehow, "Grand Theft Auto" for hours just seems so senseless to me, and to think of it as a reward. In addition, there are national age limits for a reason, arent we telling the boys that breaking the rules is ok?

I'm ok with being totally wrong here. If I need a wake up call, I understand.

    Bookmark   August 10, 2010 at 10:59AM
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lovehadley

Hmmm. I don't think this is that big of a deal.

Quite frankly---at least she ran it by DH first--many BMs (or dads, too) might have given that "reward" without consulting the other parent.

Question? What would she have done if DH said NO, I am not okay with that???

    Bookmark   August 10, 2010 at 12:01PM
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mom2emall

Caphillsm I do see your point about kids playing too many video games. I think 4 hours a day is excessive...it is hard to believe that was a punishment!

As for age restrictions on video games and movies, I see your point about age restrictions being placed on them. But I think national age limits are a guide line, as parents we have the right to adjust them for our children. All of my children have played those war games that are rated M and they know that it is not real life. They have even seen R rated movies on occasion. I believe in exposing my children to some things and being able to be there with them to discuss it.

With that being said I do restrict horror movies because of nightmares and I don't let the kids watch movies with nudity or scenes that show intimatacy (more than kissing).

But then again I am the type of parent who has not banned toy guns or nerf guns and lets my kids play cops and robbers and such.

    Bookmark   August 10, 2010 at 12:03PM
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silversword

I agree, I'd reward with something other than videos/games. But those "rules" are not "law", it's just a suggestion. Any child at any age may go to see an R movie if they are accompanied by someone over 17. It's up to the parents to decide how mature their children are and if it's appropriate for their family. Like Mom2, I'd rather be there to discuss.

So,,,,,,, my answer would be "can't we find something more intrinsically pleasing to reward him with for his maturity".

Perhaps a "money-match" for something he wants. And 4 hours a day of gaming? That's an addiction, IMO. DD gets an hour a week or so. And a 1/2 hour a day of television, if that, unless we're all watching a movie together. There's life to be lived, and I don't think in front of a screen is a healthy place to live it.

    Bookmark   August 10, 2010 at 12:10PM
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sweeby

I think Mom's basically got the right idea -- commenting on and rewarding 'Johnny's' demonstrated responsability and maturity. But I'd agree that she's using the wrong rewards -- though I suspect it's one he'd actually enjoy...

Money for a trip, experience or adventure would be more positive.

    Bookmark   August 10, 2010 at 3:38PM
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imamommy

I tend to agree that it's nice she is even bothering to get your input. SD11's mom has allowed her to watch whatever she wants & after talking with her, getting lip service that she would never do that, and it continues... we've come to realize that there's no point in trying to be reasonable with someone that is determined to be unreasonable. It's her house, her rules so she does what she wants, has never so much as asked our opinion on anything. So, I think you're lucky to have a BM that at least gives an opportunity for input.

Personally, I believe the ratings are there for a reason. Yes, it's a personal choice but I see parents doing stupid stuff all the time. Just the other day, a mother got angry because a store would not allow her daughter to try on a matching thong/bra set... for sanitary reasons of course. My thought is why does this mother want her daughter (who looked about 13) to wear a cute matching bra/panty set? IMO, you wear those so you look cute in them... usually for a boyfriend. Call me an old fashioned prude (and I know I'm not) but I'm in shock at what I see teen girls wearing.

At 16, it's probably not a big deal. Certainly not something to argue or get worked up over. When I first started reading, I thought you were going to say that she promised him or bought him a car and wanted dad to pay half without discussing it. THAT is a bigger issue.

    Bookmark   August 10, 2010 at 5:08PM
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