SHOOTING YOUR KID’S LAPTOP, AND OTHER NONSENSE

I saw the Youtube video that went viral of the disgruntled dad that took out his .45 and shot his daughter’s laptop ( the laptop died, as it was it in its vital organs!).  Watching what I thought would be a humorous video, I was deeply sadenned by all of this.  After yukking it up when I saw the laptop get aced, I then thought of the situation.  How sad it is that this father feels compelled to take such drastic action against his daughter by shooting her laptop and posting the video on her facebook account?   How sad was it that a father had just shown his daughter that the only way to resolve a disagreement was to destroy another’s property.  I know some will say that this was his property and that he had purchased it for her, but nonethelss, you’re dealing with semantics here – she had the lap top.  If he wanted to really make a point, he should have just taken the laptop, posted a message to all her friends on facebook that she’s restricted from it, and that he would handle all posts ( this would cause considerable embarrasment and discomfort for her, I’m sure).  I can understand his frustration, but to do something that silly doesn’t give the best example to his daughter on how things should be handled.  All kids are impressionable.  He should have taken the high road  and just confiscated all of her electronic devices – laptop, cell phone, Ipod, etc.

What’s even sadder is this 15 year old girl having such a sense of entitlement.  If you saw the video, he had read what she had posted about her parents on Facebook – to say it was unflattering is understating it a bit.  Without knowing the family background, it sounds that this self indulgent girl was given everything from the outset.  Both of the parents should have acted like parents and made her work for what she wanted.  My question was, who paid for her cell phone and the monthly plan?  I’m sure its piggy backed off of one of the parents accounts.  If the father really had a problem with her not wanting to get a job, he should have stopped paying for the phone.  I don’t know whether this girl gets an allowance, or whether the parents giver her money, but if that’s the case, aren’t they just enabling their daighter?  Who pays for her social activities with her friends?

But the saddest part of that video was the sense that there wasn’t any communication between the daughter and the parents.    Usually, at that age, kids have some sense of what’s appropriate and reasonable.  Doing chores around the house is reasonable.  If the daughter feels that she should not have to do anything, including making her bed, find out why she feels that’s reasonable.  The parents should just do the math with her – they work 8 – 9 hours a day, pay all the bills, grocery shop when needed.  She goes to school 6 hours a day, doesn’t have to pay bills, and is basically free the remainder of the day and weekends.

The point I’m getting to is that they should have sat her down and explained why she should be doing chores.  Reason like an adult, because that girl is fast becoming an adult and hopefully, she’ll be on her way to consider other people’s needs in addition to her own. But those days of telling a child to do something “because I said” or “because I’m the parent” should be over.  You want to teach your children coping skills, reasoning skills, and generally being a productive thoughtful human being.