Wednesday, February 10, 2010

It's Not Just Texting While Driving That's A Bad Idea

When I was in high school, the only way to talk to my friends during the day was to *gasp* actually TALK to them between classes or at lunch. Or, heaven forbid, after school. If I needed to talk to anyone I didn't go to school with, I had to use the payphone in the lobby.

The day I found out I got a fairly large role in the school play and wanted to call my parents? I used the payphone. At lunch.

If I wanted to talk to my boyfriend, who went to a different school, during the day? He called a specific payphone in our school lobby from a payphone in his school's lobby. At lunch.

When I got home from school, I actually called my mother at work. And once I was driving? I had to use the actual phone wherever I ended up to....and I know this will sound really strange.... call home and report in.

So I'm left wondering why it is so amazingly impossible for my household to contemplate just how we would function if we decided to punish Jock for a cell phone infraction by actually taking away his phone? This teenager, who generally is the kind of kid who does what he's supposed to and for the most part doesn't get in trouble? This kid that all of his teachers like? This kid got in trouble at school for cell phone usage in class. Twice. In a 7-day period. Which has resulted in a total of three days of in-school suspension.

My first thought was Take away the phone for a few days. That'll teach him. And immediately on the heels of that thought was Wait....I need to be able to reach him after track practice, and when he goes somewhere. And about that "going somewhere" thing....he'll need that phone in case of an emergency.

Umm..... at what point did disciplining my child become less about helping him learn a lesson and more about not inconviencing myself? After much discussion, Coach and I decided on a weekend of forced father-son bonding time by enlisting Jock to help clean out the garage. You know, the kind of helping where Coach directed and Jock did the work. And the rule was, he had to do it without grumbling.

Which, upon reflection, might actually have been more difficult for him than needing to use a payphone in the lobby at the school. Do they even still have payphones in high school lobbies these days?

I'm going to have to look into that in case he decides he needs to text during class again.


Cecily R said...

I have often thought that it's a good thing I didn't have to raise my kids in my generation...being able to get hold of them on a cell phone when I want to (provided they ANSWER) makes me feel a teeeeeny bit better about all the stuff that happens AWAY from me when they get older.

That said, I know at least one of my kids will get into trouble for using their phones when they shouldn't. Sigh.

Iqra said...

Very valid post. I really liked the beginning and ending.

organic baby crib said...

Kids in this generations is kind of hard to handle because they have their own lives even before they reach their teens.

Karen said...

I don't think our school ever had a pay phone. We had to use the one in the office.

I guess it's a sign of our times. Gosh, kids just can't be without cell phones for safety reasons sometimes.

Burgh Baby said...

So what you're saying is that my stance that I REFUSE to let my kid have a cell phone until she's gainfully employed (if even then) is really only inconveniencing me? Huh. I need to ponder that.

TinyTk said...

When I was in high school 8 years ago, they had 2 pay phones that barely worked, and you were only allowed to use the office phone if it was the type of emergency that involved blood and missing the late bus. When I came back to work there as a student teacher - no more pay phones, and the same policy of blood or no way off of campus to use the phones. I hope the school nurse still lets kids use the phone on the sly, not every family is financially able to provide such a convenience, especially if there is more then one child misusing cell phone rights.