Privacy for a 12 year old?

Nicole - posted on 12/16/2014 ( 10 moms have responded )




My daughter wont let me near her phone. When I ask her why she says its her private business and her friends trust her not to tell anyone what they confide in her about. As a mom I think I should be able to see whatever I want but I also want to trust her


Dove - posted on 12/17/2014




My kids were made well aware before they got their phone that it is MINE. Yes, I pay for them to use it, but I can and will check it at anytime I want. Period. Now, I don't 'usually' do so, but that was the number one condition put in place before I got it.

If they ever did not 'let' me check the phone and I wanted... they would lose it. Simple as that.


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Mommabird - posted on 12/19/2014




Although I do agree with everyone on the fact that she is 12 and Everything in her life IS your business and keeping secrets at 12 is not a good sign. So without having to play the 'power of mom' game...I would just sit her down and explain that there shouldnt be secrets kept from you. If her friends are telling her things that they dont want you to know about then its obvious that its something you SHOULD worry about. Let her know its not a trust thing, its a Mom thing. Its our job to know whats going on in our kids' lives ESPECIALLY if something is wrong or your child is acting /talking in a manner they shouldnt be at 12. If she doesnt see your point and refuses to cooperate I would take the phone and tell her its not a necessity so she wont get it back until she is responsible enough to use it appropriately.

Michelle - posted on 12/17/2014




I agree with Dove. The kids know the ground rules. If they cannot follow the basic ones, then they will lose that privilege.

Rachel - posted on 12/17/2014




This sounds tough and I am very happy that I am years away from having to fight these battles but I know many people that have gone through similar issues.
If I were you I would have to say, sorry twelve year old, I am mom, I pay the bills and everything about you at this point in your life is my business. Teaching children to respect privacy is clearly important but there are too many dangers out there to not know some details, especially if she is being so protective of them.
Good luck!!

Ev - posted on 12/17/2014




I have to agree with the other ladies here, Nichole. You need to buckle down and get the phone from her and keep it a while. She needs to learn that you say you are doing something and you mean to do it. At 12 she really does not need a phone that connects to all the social sites and such or even texting. She needs a phone that badly get one that is talk only and restrict the numbers on it. If she has to have friends remind her that it is talk only and she has only x number of minutes to use and if its gone before the month or time limit for the minutes is up she does not get anymore until the next prepaid card is to be bought.

Nicole - posted on 12/17/2014




Definitely agree. It is tough situation for me. Her dad is not in the picture and she blames me for that. Her stepdad and her have a less than warm and fuzzy relationship at this point in time. We are doing some family counseling to check in with everyone and offer an outlet for discussions. So to be honest, I have definitely been less likely to go toe to toe with her than I would have been before her dad and I split up. BUT I know what I need to do and I love my daughter more than I need to be friends with her right now :) And if I do not get a grip of it now, it will only get worse .. I know that ..

♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 12/17/2014




Excuse me? Does SHE pay for that phone and the minutes wasted by talking to and texting her friends, or do YOU?

Simple: You are the parent. You are considered responsible for the actions of your child until she is an adult. If she's doing nothing but simple little girl things with her friends on her phone, why would she not want you to see that?

Solution: Either she pays for her own phone, and all associated charges, including going over her minutes, or you have full control over the phone that you pay for. If she doesn't like that...well, she doesn't really need that damned thing, now does she?

Did you know that, should she be found to be sexting, or sending other inappropriate messages, a court could hold you just as responsible? Do you really want to invite that?

My kids were and are completely trustworthy. They still understood the 'no electronic privacy' rule and respected it.

Nicole - posted on 12/17/2014




We did discuss many things regarding the phone, that included. She is pulling the "why don't you trust me" card with it now. I am inclined to take the phone away from her if she cannot allow me to see it than not. I wanted some opinions as I do understand how important to her it is to be a good friend to some of her friends that have tough things going on at home. But in my gut I do not feel that should trump me as the parent requiring her to allow me to see her phone whenever I request to. I am not interested in posting on FB all the things her friends say, just need to monitor or be involved in what she is involved.

Non-compliance is also an issue as she enters her teen years. I feel like I need to get a bit more strict with some of the expectations as there seems to be more and more defiance surrounding my requests or expectations.

Jodi - posted on 12/16/2014




Who is the parent, you or your daughter? Sorry, but refusing to hand something over to you when you have a reasonable request is flat out non-compliance.I'd be removing the phone from her possession until she agreed to allow me to look at it and have the RESPECT not to be non-compliant when asked for it. Until then, she has demonstrated that she lacks the maturity to have a phone, and clearly has demonstrated that she can't be trusted with it.

But really, this should have been one of the conditions of her having a phone in the first place. Was it ever discussed?

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