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Meanest Mom Says No to Cell Phones for Kids

October 20, 2009 Family Travel No Comments

This classified ad recently made national news: OLDS 1999 Intrigue. Totally uncool parents who obviously don’t love teenage son, selling his car. Only driven for three weeks before snoopy mom who needs to get a life found booze under front seat. $3,700/offer. Call meanest mom on the planet.

It ain’t easy being mean. As a bonafide school teacher, I learned all my mean tricks teaching high school. After all, with forty of them and one of you, you’d better be wily. I had one colleague who was so exasperated with students asking to use the rest room during class that he used a real toilet seat as a bathroom pass. Mean, yes. Humiliating? Hopefully. Did it cut down on the problem. You bet. I watched. I learned. I implemented.

So when it comes to discipline and child raising, I try to get my “mean” on whenever I can. All my girls wanted cell phones for Christmas, but my oldest wanted one the worst. It got so bad I couldn’t read the newspaper without her sighing over my shoulder at every Motorola ad. She could not frame a sentence without referring to the cell phone of her dreams. It was disgusting. She tried every line of reasoning from “It’s safer!” to “I promise I won’t lose it!” Yeah, just like she didn’t lose her brand new Nintendo DS when she left it on an airplane. Ask her where she put her digital camera. See where that gets you. Ask her where exactly is the iPod? Determine if she has any clue where her retainer is at this very minute. Ask her if the thumb drive currently in the bottom of the washing machine might belong to her. See where I’m going with this?

If any of her electronics are actually to be found, I guarantee the battery will be dead. That, of course, will not be her fault. Someone—in this very house—has stolen her charger and therefore made it impossible to juice up her goods. And since she was so busy MAKING THE HONOR ROLL, she didn’t have time for the delicate sibling negotiations required to get back her charger so she could show she was RESPONSIBLE and needed a cell phone. If I weren’t so mean, my heart would break.

Then she dropped the dreaded E-bomb. You know, EVERYBODY in the entire middle-school world has a cell phone except for her. All I could say was boo-hoo. She must have known it was a lost cause because when she opened her fancy curling iron on Christmas morning, she seemed genuinely pleased. Two hours later, she came to me with a nasty red mark on her neck. “I burned myself with the curling iron.” Like I haven’t heard that line before? Every girl in my high school with a suspicious mark on her neck told the same story. Great! Not only have I unwittingly given my daughter a dangerous appliance, but also a darn good teenage alibi. I should have stuck with the RAZR phone.


Jody Payne
Meanest Mom on the Planet- Ooops! I mean Mom Living Out Loud

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