He was busted cheating at school...2nd offense o.O

Alysia - posted on 03/16/2016 ( 2 moms have responded )




My 15 yo was just sent home with detention after being caught copying another childs work. Naturally, he did not come home and tell us about the first offense back in December, this is the second offense resulting in detention.

A little background: My husband and I just got custody of his children, and they have been with us since November after being removed from their BM's home by CPS (we didn't know how bad the house was, they hid it from us and were threatened..another convo for another day). The transition has been difficult yet going pretty well. I think I have a pretty good relationship with them. It seems that disappointing me is a great fear of theirs. That is one tool I have in my pocket, but I don't want to use that against them either. I have no children of my own, and now I am a SAHM to 17yo DD, and twins 15 yo DS and DD. They are also new to being parented on the regular. BM let them do as they please, parent one another, and fend for themselves. There wasn't any interest in school performance, therefore, no boundaries for grades, homework, and so on.
We don't do corporal punishment, (though there are days I tell the eldest she's lucky I understand what it's like to be a sassy 17yo girl, cuz a backhand seems natural ;) ).
I need some suggestions please. I've already taken the electronics. I've been suggested to have him take a test here on the material he cheated on, or have him write sentences. Help a new mom to teens out please :)


Erica - posted on 03/17/2016




Hi Lissa…thank you for reaching out for some advice. I’m sorry to hear that you are going through the teen years already without having the opportunity to go through the younger years first, to at least be a bit prepared for the big leagues…lol. I commend you for your efforts…it sounds like you’re doing a great job so far.

I’m not sure if you and your husband are working as a unit on this particular situation. If so, great…but if not, I would encourage you to consider working closely together as a unit. Teenagers / kids in general can and will try to get away with whatever they can if you let them. If they can play a side with one parent whether they live with both parents or not it’s very possible that they will try. If all parents are on the same page and working together then the child will know that they will have to make more careful decisions and risk losing privileges if they make bad decisions. When our children begin to act out in ways such as cheating in school, as parents we definitely need to pay attention and try to find out the source of the issue that is causing the behavior.

Taking electronics away is a temporary solution. My kids used to get their things taken away and I would wonder why they didn’t ever bother to earn it back and their grades would still suffer. When I asked them why, they said that they would eventually get it back or they didn’t care. Later on, I found out that they were given other electronic devices by their friends and they would use it when I wasn’t around or sleeping…lol. When I found out that they had intentions to still do what they wanted to do I had to find a different approach. Since they were entering the teen years I sat down with them and pretty much kept it real with them. I discussed with them the reality of the people and things in this world. If they make a choice to do bad then that’s what they will get out of life…if they choose to do good then that’s what they will get. The things that are on tv shows, movies and the news are very real and sometimes they don’t think that it could ever happen to them.

I’ve reminded them that for every action, there’s a reaction. There are plenty of examples of who they would like to be someday, but how they act now and treat each other and the people around them can determine how they will be when they are on their own someday. They tell me that they’ll worry about things when they grow up, but I remind them that they are growing up with each passing day and that growing up is basically nothing but a metaphor.

Living at home with our parents is a learning ground, a place to make mistakes and learn from them before we go out into the world and experience the harsh reality that life is not fair and people will not just punish you by taking your things away. It’s real out there and we can risk losing more than our materialistic things if we do not choose to make good decisions. I know that our kids are going to make some not so good decisions because we were there doing the same thing ourselves, so I let them know that it’s better that we have communication whether it’s good or bad. Are we going to be upset when they do something bad, yes, but we (parents) can’t stay mad forever, in time we will work through the circumstances and see brighter days.

I have a few rules with them when it comes to school and it may sound harsh, but right now that our kids are growing, school is their job. I don’t allow my kids to watch tv during the week and when they come home their phone must be put in a designated area while they are doing homework so they won’t be distracted. When homework is completed they are allowed to have free time, reading, talking to their friends, texting, playing outside, etc. When the weekend comes, as long as their homework is completed they can watch tv. There’s no homework on Sunday because this is the day they should be resting their minds and having an extended time of not thinking about school.

We still have family time and outings together and our parent/child one on one outing’s together too. It’s so important to be involved in our children’s lives and keep lines of communication. They may not see it now, but all of the tools we put in their tool boxes will be useful for them later when they are on their own. In no way does their negative behavior get dismissed, because they have to learn to take responsibility for their actions. There are plenty of disciplinary actions you can take, but you and your husband should work together to find out what would work best because all teens are not the same. There’s a wonderful site that can assist you and your husband with the teen years, it’s http://bit.ly/1UlrYmm . They have worked wonders for me and my family. All the best to you and your family!


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