Thank you for your responses; more...

Avatar for kingalex
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-27-2003
Thank you for your responses; more...
Tue, 11-18-2003 - 2:55pm
Thank you so much for your responses to my dilemma about ds and his $450 cell phone bill. The idea about a pre-paid cell phone is wonderful; and will look into it once he's paid off the bill. He's also restricted from any and all phone use. I do have some more "what would you do" questions regarding this issue, if you all don't mind.

One thing I didn't mention is that ds is my stepson. Although I've been his stepmom (and he's lived with us) since he was 6 years old, he does communicate (and visits) his biomom who lives 3 hours away. So obviously there are phone calls between them and we have to allow him talk to her, regardless of any phone restrictions. When he talks to her on the phone, he takes the cordless phone up to his room, and then makes other phone calls following his conversation with her. I don't think it would be right to make him talk to his mom downstairs with everyone listening, so I'm not sure how to keep him from using that phone for other calls (there's no way to track it, since it's the landline).

The other issue is that he often goes over to a friend's house and spends a lot of time there, especially on weekends. We have not grounded him (or should we?) because of this issue, and I know he'll get on his friend's phone and make all the calls he wants to while he's there, thus defeating the whole consequences of his actions.

I'm sorry if I'm being a pain about this issue, it just seems that from previous experience, ds always finds the loopholes in his punishments, and he won't learn from them.

Thanks again!



Avatar for elc11
Community Leader
Registered: 06-16-1998
Wed, 11-19-2003 - 12:33am
I don't think that you ought to ground your ds for this infraction. Paying the bills is enough--it is the logical consequence which is usually the one they learn best from because it makes the most sense. But the repayment should be painful for him, doing without things that he really wants, so he realizes that there is a sacrifice involved.

I would probably keep the phone restriction fairly short, mainly because it is so hard to enforce, and so easy for him to get around. (My dd used to do the same thing and be proud of herself for how she got away with getting around the punishment.) When he talks to his biomom you could tell him that you need to talk to her when he's done and get the phone back that way...

Good luck!