Dear Wendy
Dear Wendy

Mom Uses Social Media To Teach Her Kid a Lesson

I’m totally bookmarking this for future reference. This is definitely not the same world I grew up in back in the 80s, and I can only imagine all the new ways that will exist for Jackson to get himself into trouble by the time he’s a pre-teen. You gotta respect a mom who uses her kids’ medium — social media, in this case — to teach them a lesson/ discipline them. I hope when ReShonda Tate Billingsley’s daughter grows up, she appreciates that her mother loved her enough to want to keep her safe and teach her to conduct herself with dignity.

74 comments… add one
  • katie May 14, 2012, 3:07 pm

    oh sad day for this girl!! dang. funny though…

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  • SweetsAndBeats May 14, 2012, 3:16 pm

    I read the article and I think that this punishment was appropriate. The girl is only 12 years old! Perfect time to teach her that virtually any photo can be misconstrued – even though she wasn’t actually drinking the liquor, imagine what could happen if she wanted to run for public office one day and her opponents decided to paint her as a lifetime-long alcoholic, or some other similarly life-damaging scenario?

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  • GatorGirl May 14, 2012, 3:22 pm

    I like this story better than the guy who took his shot gun to his kids laptop. This punishment fits the crime.

    Only concern is how the girls friends react and any bullying that could happen.

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    • TaraMonster May 14, 2012, 4:11 pm

      When I saw the video with the guy who shot his daughter’s laptop, I kept thinking “Well with a role model like him, it’s pretty obvious where she gets her piss poor attitude.” This version of punishment is much more balanced, but then again, it doesn’t involve a gun so I guess that’s a given lol.

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    • katie May 14, 2012, 5:15 pm

      just curious, but what bullying could come of this? i just feel like this is a pretty clear cut thing- the sign says, i did this and so im not allowed to have a FB anymore. i mean, ive heard stories like this, like the gun one, that could definitely invite bullying… but not this one.

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      • painted_lady May 14, 2012, 7:49 pm

        Oh, it’s ridiculous the kind of things the kids make fun of each other for. I’ve heard them trash each other for the wrong brand of chips or for tying their shoelaces the wrong way. Which, hey, at that point, I don’t know that anything the victim is doing can be pinpointed as a cause of bullying. I mean, yeah, she may get made fun of for having that sign held up, for being kicked off facebook, for not being sneaky enough and getting caught on instagram, but if it weren’t that, it would be something else.

      • GatorGirl May 14, 2012, 10:56 pm

        Im not really sure…but such public shaming/scolding, you never know. Kids are pretty vicious these days. My initial though was kids saying she was “weak” or a”loser” or a “sissy” for not standing up to her parents and thus getting a reputation of being a push over. A little bit of an extreme reaction- but kids can be nuts. If she was possing on FB with booze bottles at her age (tween? Early teen?) I’m was surmise she has fairly low self esteem in the first place and comes from a bit of a rough neighborhood where I would guess kids are even more mean.

        I could be grasping at straws here, but I wouldn’t choose this punishment for my future children.

      • Something More May 14, 2012, 11:29 pm

        You’re right. You are grasping at straws.

  • JK May 14, 2012, 3:37 pm

    I love this, and I wish more parents would control what their kids do on the computer. The amount of pics of pubescent girls posing provocatively is scary. (What an alliteration).
    I don´t even want to imagine what these things will be like in 10 years (when I guess my daughters, at 11 and 14 will be spending a lot of time on the computer), but I do know that they aren´t going to have one in their bedroom, and I will check their FB pages regularly (or whatever the kids are using at that time)

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    • lets_be_honest May 14, 2012, 3:50 pm

      It is frightening. I plan to do the same as you.

      This picture is AWESOME though. I totally applaud this parent.

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    • kerrycontrary May 14, 2012, 4:11 pm

      Yup, my parents kept the computer in the family room which I think was a great idea. I also plan on checking FB pages and will try to prevent them from having a camera-phone at all costs!

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      • JK May 14, 2012, 4:17 pm

        I´m glad I´m not going to be the only strict mum!
        I mean we grew up without phones, etc., why do kids now need them? My 12 year old nephew (husband´s sister´s son) changes his cell every few months, has at least 3 fb accounts. It´s ridiculous!

        I plan on getting each girl a basic cell phone when they start actually doing things by themselves, so they can be reached (by me) or reach me in case of emergency.

      • lets_be_honest May 14, 2012, 4:20 pm

        How old will they be when you consider getting them phones?

      • JK May 14, 2012, 4:25 pm

        For now I´m thinking around 12, possibly. It will all depend on their social lives, and extra-curriculars. And then it will only be a basic, call or text only phone (if they still exist).
        There are ads here, selling cell phones for like 5 year olds. I think that´s awful!!!
        A couple of weeks ago my 4 year old came home from kindy saying that when she started primary she needed a cell phone because “all the kids in primary have one”. Of course I explained how things really are.
        How old is your daughter, lbh? I can´t remember if you´ve said (if you prefer not to say no problem).

      • honeybeenicki May 14, 2012, 4:33 pm

        I think most companies have a teen phone option where its a super basic phone with parental controls in it. I know my stepdaughter has a phone (my step son does too but he mostly uses it to play games and send me dorky text pics) but their mom checks their phones regularly. She decided my stepdaughter (14) is not mature enough to have FB yet, so she doesn’t have one.

      • lets_be_honest May 14, 2012, 4:40 pm

        Yes. They make phones with only 3 buttons- parents pre-programmed numbers and 911. I’ve considered those briefly, but still not necessary. I do find myself selfishly wishing she had one so I could talk to her while she’s at after care.

      • JK May 14, 2012, 4:51 pm

        I´ve never heard of those here, hopefully by the time I need one they will be here!

    • theattack May 14, 2012, 4:15 pm

      I don’t have kids, but I think it’s a lot harder to control computer-use than just checking FB pages. Kids can get secret FB pages at their friends’ houses, or at school during computer class, and they can set things as private so that it doesn’t even show up when you search for them. Kids know how to use computers now, deleting history and everything. It’s totally frightening when you want to keep your kids safe online.

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      • lets_be_honest May 14, 2012, 4:17 pm

        I hear ya, but being an overly active parent and at least trying to monitor their computers helps. Just as they can do all of that, we can find ways around some ofit.

      • JK May 14, 2012, 4:21 pm

        I know nothing is foolproof, that´s why I´m fostering open communication with them from now (at 1 and 4). And in the case of the 4 year old, I know all of her friends, and their parents. And I plan to keep it that way.

        I see lots of parents that let their kids lock themselves in their rooms on the computer all day, and never check anything, they have no idea what their kids are even doing. A couple of years ago I told my SIL that her son (he must´ve been around 9 at the time) had his phone numbers and addresses in public view on his fb and msn. And he would post when he was home alone. Needless to say my SIL is an idiot.

      • theattack May 14, 2012, 4:44 pm

        Oh man, that is terrifying about your SIL’s son! I really hope she’s gotten that under control now.

        Monitoring everything you can is definitely better than doing nothing at all. My comment was mostly just lamenting that it seems like kids are increasingly able to find ways around the rules that parents make. When I was a preteen, I was a professional loophole-finder, and it took about a year for my (strict) parents to even find out that every day I was emailing and IM-ing an older teenage boy who lived in another country. My parents monitored my computer time, they had the computer in a family room, and they knew all of my friends and their parents, but they had no idea that I had the guy to create an email address with the name of a real-life friend that they knew. And they didn’t know that I was using calling cards to call him internationally at payphones when I got up to get nachos at the middle school football games, or that he had pictures of me and my friends and knew things about our schools and houses. I was EXTREMELY lucky that he was just some bored teenager and not a predator. But it terrifies me to know how much I lied to my parents, and even though they were the strictest parents in town they still didn’t know about it until much later than they should have. The only things they could have done to prevent it would have been to read every one of my emails and to literally supervise me every minute. Even after they did catch me and told me to stop, I found new ways to hide it from them. Coming from experience, there was nothing they could have done to stop me from doing what I wanted on the internet. They only had slightly more control over me in real life too. I’ll certainly monitor my future kids’ internet activity, and I’ll do what I can to keep them safe, but it is just so scary how little control parents actually have when kids are sneaky and determined to do something.

      • JK May 14, 2012, 4:47 pm

        Holy crap.
        I guess I´m kinda hoping that my girls take after me, as well. I was a model daughter/teenager/student/whatever. 🙂

      • lets_be_honest May 14, 2012, 4:49 pm

        I wasn’t, but I learned a hell of a lot of things that I won’t overlook when mine is a teen.

      • JK May 14, 2012, 5:07 pm

        In a few years I´ll ask you for pointers then. 🙂

      • theattack May 14, 2012, 5:03 pm

        My parents, teachers, and friends’ parents THOUGHT I was a model child. Little did they know I was sneaking out at night, talking to strangers online, stealing street signs, hopping in cars with older boys I barely knew, and trying to have seance’s in other people’s yards in the middle of the night. I seemed like a model child, because I was so so sneaky and pretty damn smart. I’ll probably never be able to properly trust my child after how horrible I was.

      • honeybeenicki May 14, 2012, 5:08 pm

        I’m in the same boat as you =\ Sometimes I let stuff slip around my mom and she just looks at me, so I think maybe some of the things I thought I got away with were things she just let slide.

      • theattack May 14, 2012, 5:20 pm

        I guess when your kid is doing so many crazy things, you have to pick and choose what you make a big deal out of, or they’ll completely close up to you. My mom likes to say that she knew more than I thought she did, but I think that was just a scare-tactic.

      • lets_be_honest May 14, 2012, 5:26 pm

        Yea, I use that scare tactic already.
        I have beat it into her that the absolute worst thing she can do is lie. I remind her of that ALL the time. I’ve actually made a bigger deal about her lying about brushing her teeth than something more severe than that, just to show her that I mean it. I hope it works. I am so terrified of something happening to her and her not telling me.

      • lets_be_honest May 14, 2012, 5:08 pm

        Not sure if anyone read my blurb on the earlier article about a friend who forced her husband to marry her but the same girl FLEW TO TEXAS from NY at 16 to meet her boyfriend who was 18 in the military, without her parents knowing. Serously F’d up childhood.

      • theattack May 14, 2012, 5:15 pm

        Good grief, that’s terrifying! Did you mention that to the person in the forums who wanted to fly to see her bf who she’d never met?

      • lets_be_honest May 14, 2012, 5:16 pm

        No, I wish I had remembered that!

      • lets_be_honest May 14, 2012, 5:17 pm

        But in her defense (if there is any) they were a couple in teh same high school, but he was older. So at least he wasn’t a stranger.

      • theattack May 14, 2012, 5:21 pm

        Ohh, well that’s much safer, although still incredibly dangerous. At least it eliminates the whole hairy, 50-year-old pedophile possibility, although it doesn’t do anything for the scary rapist possibilities.

      • lets_be_honest May 14, 2012, 4:49 pm

        Now this is where being a super stalker girlfriend turned mom works out benefically! (having ur bf use the name of your friend made me think that. I’ve heard of men saving girlfriend’s names as a guy’s name in their phone).

        Also, your parents could’ve taken your computer away, so you can’t really say there was nothing they could’ve done. There is always a way.

      • theattack May 14, 2012, 4:52 pm

        My parents DID take my computer away. I still found ways to get onto them, and I still had his phone number memorized either way. I would call him in the middle of the night when they were asleep, or when I was at a friend’s house, or at the payphones at school, or at the payphones in any public place. I had computer class at school. I was considered a model child too, so the teachers always had me helping them with things on the computers, etc. My access was practically limitless. When they first found out about it, I even just had my friend log in and send him an email for me until I found more loopholes. I truly don’t think my parents could have stopped me.

      • lets_be_honest May 14, 2012, 4:45 pm

        I have to say the knowing friends and parents rule is a really good one. My mother weeded out a lot of the bad eggs that way.

      • theattack May 14, 2012, 4:54 pm

        It definitely does help. I still did stuff I wasn’t supposed to do, and I still got away with a lot of it because, like I said above, I was sneaky as hell, but at least those connections allowed my parents to find out about it more frequently.

      • SweetsAndBeats May 14, 2012, 7:17 pm

        There are some ways parents can get around a lot of loopholes…

        1) Key loggers on all computers at home.
        2) Full control over Facebook profiles etc, with the option chosen to be notified if the account is logged into from a place other than the home computer.
        3) Text transcripts sent to the house from the phone company.
        4) Keep Google update notifications on things like the kid’s phone number, your house address, their name and location combined, things like Child’s-Name/Child’s-Age/Child’s-Hometown/Home-State, and also all usernames that you are aware of your child using.
        5) GPS trackers on the child’s bicycle, phone, and car if they have one. Maybe even slip one into the girl’s favorite purse, if necessary.

        I know these sound like super-effing-crazy measures, but if your kid is intelligent and has a taste for rebellion, these may be the lengths you’ll need to go to in order to keep them under your thumb. Lord knows my parents were vastly ignorant when it came to keeping me out of trouble’s way.

      • lets_be_honest May 15, 2012, 11:36 am

        Hey, if these things keep my kid alive and safe, I’d do them in a heartbeat.

    • TaraMonster May 14, 2012, 4:08 pm

      Thumbed up for absolutely astounding alliteration antics!

      My best friend (oldest of 7) has two little sisters, who at 14 and 16 are still not allowed on FB. There is only one computer in the house, in their father’s study. I don’t know how her parents pull it off but the girls are only mildly annoyed that they can’t be on FB. They’re good kids.

      Unlike my best friend and I at their age when we were sneaking her dad’s vodka and pouring water in the bottle. He only didn’t catch us right away bc he’s a scotch and whiskey guy and the vodka was for guests. Oh memories!

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      • lets_be_honest May 14, 2012, 4:16 pm

        Ah yes, the ol frozen “vodka” (My parents kept it in the freezer)

  • Kristina May 14, 2012, 4:01 pm

    Eh I think this is a little far. I had very open parents and knowing what I got away with, I know I want to be a much stricter parent, but I also think her mother making her doing something like this only calls more attention to the situation. I really don’t think public humiliation is the answer.

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    • honeybeenicki May 14, 2012, 4:41 pm

      The mom that did this was very clear and articulate about the things she had done to prevent this and the other options she considered as well as her reason for choosing this. What would be your suggestion?

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      • Kristina May 14, 2012, 4:58 pm

        I don’t think it’s horrible the way the mom handled it, but I think you can still show concern for your children without embarrassing them in a way that places so much emphasis on what they did was wrong. I think that often leads to a child not doing something simply because of the punishment they might face. Which isn’t necessarily bad, but I think having open and honest communication with your children about these things way before it happens helps prevent it. Because you can monitor your children to the point where it becomes a part-time job, but you are never going to find out every detail, and often will not find out the worst of the worst. And in the case when these things still happen, I still think having honest talks with your children is better them punishing them in a way that makes them feel bad. This picture and articles about this are now on the Internet forever, and I don’t think that’s really a good thing either–she’s hopefully learned her lesson and it shouldn’t have to be plastered all over the Internet.

      • honeybeenicki May 14, 2012, 5:12 pm

        The mom made it pretty clear that the talking thing didn’t work in this particular case (I believe she said she talked extensively with her). So what about other forms of embarrassment (mentioned elsewhere – ie: principal’s office, reading notes out loud in class, having phone taken away in class, having phone ANSWERED by the teacher in class). The pictures the kid took holding the alcohol are also all over the internet forever, which is why the mom did this. I think she put it as “Get tore out where you show out.” which means you get in trouble in the same manner/place that you were having problems. The guy shooting the teen’s laptop was extreme for me. I found it a tad funny, but extreme.

      • Kristina May 14, 2012, 5:31 pm

        I think it comes down to that I personally don’t agree with negative punishment as a whole, especially like what happened in this situation. My parents raised me with an approach to use positive reinforcement (and some negative reinforcement), never negative punishment though. I know I wouldn’t be as easy going as my parents, but I don’t personally like the idea of embarrassing a child, mostly because of how I was raised. So I don’t agree with other forms of embarrassment either that happen at school like having a teacher answer a phone or reading notes aloud in class. Obviously people get embarrassed all the time in the real world, but I don’t think it’s a good way to punish a child through this. I’m not saying this child is scarred for life or anything, but I don’t really agree with it. And I know that many people have different views on this than I do. I also don’t care for an invasion of privacy (like in the case of the dad shooting the teen’s laptop–if I remember it correctly), but I definitely do understand a parent’s desire to invade upon a teenager’s privacy to a degree–I just don’t have any experience with parents who monitored me all the time.

      • Nadine May 15, 2012, 7:28 am

        I’m with you. If my parents humiliated me, I would never be able to see ‘their side’ of the issue (my behaviour) for a very long time. I would just react. Children are people too. Their humiliation is real, and an unfitting response to any behaviour.
        Parents are supposed to parent with the idea that they and their child are navigating the world together, figuring out boundaries and the best way for this child to grow up. The ‘parent vs child’ approach has never worked, in my experience. And I know kids can be jerks, but showing the power you have over them is the jerkiest.

      • Kristina May 15, 2012, 8:36 pm

        Exactly. One thing I really loved about how my parents raised me is that they never saw themselves as parent versus child, and never abused their power over me. They considered my (and my brother’s) opinions on many decisions that they could have made entirely on their own. I always liked knowing that I had some input and say in how they raised me and our family dynamics. As a result, I ended up telling them way more things than I would have otherwise (such as drinking alcohol).

      • CatsMeow May 15, 2012, 11:22 am

        She could have just suspended or revoked the girl’s social media privileges. I don’t see why the embarrassment part had to be added.

  • Michelle.Lea May 14, 2012, 3:14 pm

    I think the punishment fit the crime. I know when I was a kid, it’s not a democracy lol. Parents are the bosses. they make the rules. If you want to break them, then you have to accept the punishment that goes along with it. If I had a child in my house, they would not be on any social media until it was agreed upon within the family, and no, it would not be private.

    I also like how she pointed out that while this would work with this child, she would not have used it on her other child. Kids are different, it’s important that parents realize it, in not only punishments, but other aspects of their lives.

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  • AllegroFox May 14, 2012, 4:17 pm

    I’m always slightly eeked out by the “public humiliation” approach – but this mom seems articulate and thoughtful, and not at all vindictive the way some parents seem to be when they do this sort of thing. Aside from that, the punishment itself is fairly mild – embarrassing, yes, but being sent to the principal’s office is embarrassing. Having your phone confiscated in class is embarrassing. Those things are fairly standard to growing up, I’d think. Having a potential employer find inappropriate photos? Potentially far more than embarrassing, and that’s what she’s making sure to avoid here.

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    • honeybeenicki May 14, 2012, 4:35 pm

      I think what really got me here is this mom made it clear what she had done PRIOR to this and why certain things weren’t going to work. I agree that being called to the office or having to read a note out loud in class (jeez that happened a lot…do kids even write notes now?) or having their phone confiscated in class are also embarrassing.

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      • AllegroFox May 14, 2012, 5:05 pm

        Embarrassment is part of learning to be an adult, in a lot of ways. It’s our little proto-conscience.

        …Is it weird that I just realized I can remember how to spell conscience by saying “con science” in my head? Science!

      • JK May 14, 2012, 5:11 pm

        I think I remember a teacher actually teaching me that at some point!

      • honeybeenicki May 14, 2012, 5:15 pm

        If I could have the things that embarrassed me back when I was a kid instead of some of the stuff now, I would take it! I totally agree – embarrassment is part of growing and becoming an adult. I remember my phone going off in class when I was senior and my teacher answered it.

  • Sunshine Brite May 14, 2012, 4:19 pm

    Personally, I think this is an appropriate punishment, but professionally, I know it’s a fine line. I know some cases recently reported have dealt with humiliation and public punishments including a child (younger than this one) standing with a sign outside of his school where the parents were punished.

    There was also something recently that sounded horrendous with a girl that age who was forced to wear a sign and a diaper and run up and down her block. I’m sure similar cases are where the stricter punishment law interpretations came from.

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  • EricaSwagger May 14, 2012, 3:27 pm

    I hope I’m strong enough to act like this mom when I have kids of my own. Right now I say I’ll be tough, but you never know how you’re going to be as a parent. I honestly wish more parents were like this.

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  • AKchic_ May 14, 2012, 4:31 pm


    We went to a school function on Friday night and a bunch of kids came up to me and my oldest and said “are you M’s mom?”, so I said “last time I checked, yes.” They kept saying that he’d told them about me, so I asked how bad it was, and they admitted it was kind of bad, so I said “well, he’s too kind, I’m sure… especially since I’m a lot worse than he’ll ever say, because he knows I’ll give him a swirly if he ever tells the truth.” I winked, and the ones that have been to our house started laughing. The others looked downright horrified.

    We are discussing the possibility of allowing the oldest to have a FaceBook account this year (he starts Jr. High in the fall, and turns 12 tomorrow). His older brother (6 months older, going into the 8th grade) has one, and it would be easier for them to communicate with each other that way since his brother doesn’t live in the same city. Also, his biological father is online, and while they don’t communicate now (they met once, when M was 4), we (my 2nd ex-husband who has been “Dad” since M was 2, my SO, and I) are not adverse to limited contact, should M’s biological father desire it AND it proves beneficial to M. Our computers are all in the living room where we can monitor everything. M is getting a rebuilt laptop from my ex-husband for his birthday, and that will have parental protection stuff on it (the same things that are on my desktop that the kids currently use), and will not be allowed upstairs at all (where the bedrooms are), and will be checked after each use (it is soooo nice having an IT major for an SO).

    We’re also discussing the idea of a cell phone. We have a land line for kid callers, but the cell phone would be one of those pre-paid things for emergencies. I.e., he has a game after school and I’m running late to pick him up and need to let him know. It would be confiscated daily and checked all the time.
    We’re also going to institute a debit card allowance system. A pre-paid Wal-Mart card will be his “Allowance”. We can track his purchases online. My ex can deposit money from NJ whenever he wants, my mom can do so when she wants (for his birthday, rewards for good grades, whatever), and I can do so when he has done extra chores around the house. He’s been handling a lot of his own cash gifts/allowances since he was in kindergarten, and I’m comfortable giving him a pre-paid debit card for the same purposes.

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    • honeybeenicki May 14, 2012, 4:40 pm

      I read an article (I think it was LZ Granderson or whatever his name is on CNN) about the debit card allowance and how much it has taught him and his kid. I think we’re going to do that with the kids. I’m pretty sure he used a regular debit card but set it up so that the transaction wouldn’t go through if there wasn’t enough money left (so no overdraft) and also put the kid’s money on there that was to be used for clothes, shoes, school supplies, etc.

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    • kerrycontrary May 14, 2012, 4:43 pm

      I love the prepaid debit card idea. I recently read an article on CNN about how a man giving his son a debit card taught him fiscal responsibility. I had a debit card since I was 15 and started working and I never had problems with it.

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      • honeybeenicki May 14, 2012, 4:47 pm

        I think we were talking about the same article 🙂

      • AKchic_ May 14, 2012, 4:59 pm

        Never read the article. I had thought about it after we got prepaid cards for spring break this year. The SO was going to Colorado and I didn’t want him taking his REAL debit card in case his wallet got lost, and I didn’t want him spending too much (his dad is a leech), so I figured, once his money was gone, that was that (I still ended up putting an extra $100 on it while he was down there). I got myself one for spring break because my ex was coming up from NJ to spend the week with the boys and I didn’t want to spend any money from my account while he was here (we were doing a photo session with him and the boys, and that cost $320 on its own).

        I liked the prepaid card because it is very straight forward. The fees are outlined right there in the package you get with the card. ATM – boom, $X. $3 a month user fee. All that fun stuff. To me, it would help my son understand the banking practices currently in effect before he can get a real account that he can use like any other adult. It’s something I can also set up for direct deposit. $10 every paycheck if I’d like, and so can my ex-husband if he wants. Or, we can buy the refill cards. The simplicity of adding money to this thing is really what I like, as well as how it will teach him about current banking practices without having to get him an account. At his age, he can’t have his own debit card from any of the banks in Alaska, only a savings account, and I have to be on the account as well. While I don’t mind that, I also worry about my 1st husband. My 1st husband may still have a copy of Matt’s birth certificate and SS card. He may try to empty any account Matt has. Just like he continually tries to do to mine.

      • theattack May 14, 2012, 5:11 pm

        So does he ever use paper money too? I think the debit card idea is GREAT because invisible money is a very different concept than having a visual in your wallet. But I wonder if he ever has to count out money or anything still?

    • lets_be_honest May 14, 2012, 4:43 pm

      I love the allowance system! Never heard of that before.

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    • Sunshine Brite May 14, 2012, 5:01 pm

      The debit card idea is awesome!

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  • bittergaymark May 14, 2012, 5:43 pm

    Whew. All I have to say on this is: Damn… I feel beyond lucky that I am neither parent nor child with all this rampant technology. Seriously. Social Media? It’s anything but… People don’t LIVE lives anymore, they pantomime them on Facebook instead for all the world to see — carefully scheduling photoshoots (of course!) so they can tag enough images to create the illusion that they’re LIVING the greatest of lives… Which they aren’t of course. It’s hard to be living much of a life when you have to constantly check in just to be sure you never miss somebody else’s status updates…

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    • *HmC* May 14, 2012, 6:02 pm

      “People don’t LIVE lives anymore, they pantomime them on Facebook instead for all the world to see”

      I love this!

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    • landygirl May 14, 2012, 9:58 pm

      I’ve got to say that I was thinking pretty much the same thing. I’m glad that I don’t have to deal with parenting issues like this. I’m also glad that I didn’t grow up with the internet, it makes being a teenager even more difficult.

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  • S.B. May 14, 2012, 5:04 pm

    So much better for the kid to have a bit of embarrassment now (something I’m sure will serve as a reminder!) than to face more serious consequences later. That’s a mom who sees the long-term consequences.

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  • spark May 14, 2012, 6:55 pm

    Public humiliation as punishment? No thanks. PARENTING FAIL–big time. At least this mother isn’t as horrendous as the “father” (read, major asshole who doesn’t deserve kids) with the laptop.

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  • painted_lady May 14, 2012, 7:23 pm

    I get the people who say that humiliation is no way to teach a child. And on one hand, I agree. Shaming a child for wrongdoing can be really harsh. But what if, instead of posing with a bottle of vodka and taking pictures, she had been at a party and tried some and ended up throwing up all over the place? I bet her friends would be ostracizing her far worse than they are right now. I bet she would be far more humiliated. And that wouldn’t be cruelty on the mom’s part – those are real-world consequences. Sometimes parenting is turning what’s a close call or a blasé attitude toward something serious into an actual consequence because the real world is not always going to punish wrongdoing and yet is far less forgiving of it. For some kids, disappointing their parents is shameful enough. I was one of those kids, and my mom printing up a picture of me holding vodka at 12 and taping it to my door would have been so mortifying I probably still wouldn’t drink to this day. However, for a kid who values her peers far more than family? This is the absolute right road to take. My brother was one of those kids. When the school called my mom to tell her he’d been absent enough he was about to fail the grade after she’d watched him leave for school every morning for three months, she confronted him and he got angry and refused to show any remorse. So she drove him to school the next day and walked him to all his classes.

    One of the biggest hurdles I have at school is kids who have no consequences at home. I can’t make mom and dad punish the kid who comes into my class each morning and makes loud farting noises anytime a female sits or bends over (I don’t even want to try and unpack that). The couple of times I’ve called home over other issues, his mother is very nice, but nothing changes. So this last time, I called her, then called the kid over and had him explain the whole thing to his mom – with the entire class watching. First, having to put words to your misdeeds makes them more real – the mom in this story obviously made her daughter write out the sign – and second, there’s something about saying “I make farting noises when the girls bend over” in front of a classroom full of kids that makes you never want to do it again. And in the same way, knowing all the people you know have seen you holding up a sign talking about you being immature is going to make you think next time about how badly you *really* need that instagram photo.

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  • Anna May 14, 2012, 7:33 pm

    Does anyone else find it ironic that the thing getting so many kids in trouble today is not what they are doing but simply that they are stupid enough to get caught by posting it all over the internet? It’s only been 10 years since I graduated high school, but I was no perfect angel when I was a teenager. I didn’t get caught doing the things I was doing because we left no evidence. No photos, nothing online, no record of where I spent the cash I earned at my part-time job.

    Every generation of kids has goofed off, gotten drunk, skipped class, etc…but the earlier generations were just much smarter about it.

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    • Mandanoa May 14, 2012, 9:50 pm

      This is the point I have tried to express to the younger people I am friends with on facebook. I’m not going to tell you to not drink or smoke pot or whatever because Lord knows I started drinking a lot younger than was appropriate. But do NOT let your dumb friends take photos of it and definitely do NOT post them on facebook. That kind of shit will only come back to bite you in a the ass in the future.
      I’m with you Anna. When my friends and I did shit in highschool we covered our asses. Kids these days are dumb.

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  • deaddoc May 14, 2012, 10:57 pm

    If we didn’t behave us girls wouldn’t be allowed to shave our legs. I tell you what: you straighten up quick when you’re a 16 year old girl in the summer time trying to hide your hairy tarantula legs!

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