Sunday, September 28, 2008

Call 1-800-CANT-TALK

Why? That's all I can ask, is why? Why is it so difficult to follow the rules? No, not for me, personally, but for the teen apparently. You talk to any parent of a teenager and they will tell you that they would rather have a toddler than a teenager, and I fully agree.

Saturday morning I was blissfully sitting at the computer when I went to check my e-mail. My cell phone statement was waiting for me. Now, for reasons that I cannot explain, I never looked at the cell phone bill last month and apparently didn't pay it, either. I'm an idiot, I admit it. So I click to open this month's bill and nearly had a heart attack. My bill is now close to $200 more than it should be for a two month period! So, I calmly scream at everyone to leave me alone while I research this matter but the person who should have heard the scream was at work. Now, the teen was already in trouble at this point for many, many reasons. Mostly because he is not keeping up with his school work. I give and give and give - I give the gift of time - what I get back is a big, fat kick in the face. So, we were already dealing with issues with him on Friday night and now it looked as if we were going to have MORE issues when he got home on Saturday.

After 30 minutes of intensive research it looked as if our family plan should really just be called the "teen" plan because only HE gets to use all of the minutes. Shocking, right? On our 700 minute plan - and yes, I know you're all saying "OMG, that's such a small amount!". But these phones are not our PRIMARY phones! These phones were to be used when we are out and about and need to get in touch with one another, NOT to call our friends 24 hours a day! Just a couple of weeks ago I asked the boy to NOT use the cell when he is at home. I mean, you can use the land-line 24 hours a day and my bill will not change. I even have unlimited long-distance. Go ahead. Talk. All day. All night. I DON'T CARE! I mean, here I was giving him permission to talk to his heart's content - on the HOME PHONE. But did he do that? No. So last month he used 659 minutes of our combined 700 and this month he used over 800. I am so not pleased. So while the boy is writing out his "wish list" of items that he wants to buy with each new paycheck, he has now had to add "Money to mom and dad for cell phone stupidity" which is all fine and well but it will take him about 2 months to pay us off and we have to pay the bill NOW.

There is no real parenting lesson here. I mean, he needs a cell phone. He is going to pay his debt to us. We gave him the rule of how we want him to communicate and he disobeyed us. Severely. I'm not going to take his phone away and I believe that the loss of his money will be punishment enough. I'm just disappointed. I mean, we don't have a lot to give but what little we do have, we want to share with our children.

Why is it never enough?

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