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  1. #41
    Join Date
    Mar. 7, 2003
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    Kansas City, KS
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    274

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    I'm a juvenile probation officer... not my biological kids but I have some craaazzzy stories that come out of this job. I only get to work with the "bad" ones, but I like to see them as "misguided". Welcome to teenagerhood. My mom got super lucky, I didn't drink/go to parties/smoke or anything in high school, I was always at the barn or doing some other kind of sport. Not to say I wasn't tempted but I was too scared to disappoint my mom.


    1 members found this post helpful.

  2. #42
    Join Date
    Jul. 20, 2010
    Location
    Texarkana, AR
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    1,695

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    As far as your decision to pull the horse, it's your horse, your decision. But if this is the second time niece has been caught drinking and smoking pot, then maybe its time for some counseling about drug and alcohol abuse.


    1 members found this post helpful.

  3. #43
    Join Date
    Sep. 8, 2006
    Location
    WNY
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    5,681

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    Quote Originally Posted by paulaedwina View Post
    1. Punishments are effective when they encourage better behavior. So painful consequences of the right degree will force better contemplation in the future.
    Minor point, but by definition punishments do not encourage behavior. Reinforcements encourage (good) behavior, punishments discourage (bad) behavior.


    I don't think it's too harsh, but perhaps say if the kid stays out of trouble for 2 months (or whatever), she can have the horse, but if she messes up again, she's SOL.
    Against My Better Judgement: A blog about my new FLF OTTB
    Do not buy a Volkswagen. I did and I regret it.
    VW sucks.


    4 members found this post helpful.

  4. #44
    Join Date
    Jan. 31, 2006
    Location
    Maine
    Posts
    655

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    Quote Originally Posted by LauraKY View Post
    Well yes, but. You do have to make sure the punishment fits the crime. Otherwise, no lesson is learned and the child focuses on the severity of the punishment. I don't know that I would have made the threat in the first place, but yes, once you make it you do have to carry it out.
    I agree that the punishment should fit the crime - and given what the OP stated I feel it does.

    That being said, I also believe in 2nd chances. Just because the horse wasn't delivered as promised this time doesn't mean that the girl can't go on "probation" so to speak, and earn back the right to the horse.

    Which, of course, is an equally important lesson!


    1 members found this post helpful.

  5. #45
    Join Date
    Sep. 2, 2005
    Location
    Upstate NY
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    12,772

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    Quote Originally Posted by S1969 View Post
    It's possible that your niece cancelled her party plans but her friends showed up anyway.
    I am confused why this reasoning would make it OK?

    Is it impossible to tell a friend at the door, "Oh, I am so sorry, I cancelled the party I can not let you inside"? Or if you do not have the balls to do it yourself call the police and tell them that you are a minor, some friends came over and started a party and you want them out but you can not get them to leave. Then the police will be the bad guys.

    It is not the fault of others that she had a party in her house. It is her fault. Period.


    19 members found this post helpful.

  6. #46
    Join Date
    Jun. 24, 2006
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    1,919

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    You're doing the right thing, LBM. She knew better, hopefully this will stick out but if everyone else keeps giving in she may just peg you as the mean aunt. But she needs consequences.

    And sorry but underage drinking and throwing parties should never be encouraged my adults. My parents were like this with my two younger siblings after being quite hard on me and I wouldn't even have thought of it. Hardly parented the other two.

    My sister just had her first DUI and drinks constantly. She has little work ethic. My brother is better but has been caught with pot in his car at least twice, legal troubles... Just sad. Kids need structure and consequences. If they, like your niece, decide the punishment is worth the crime... Then fine. But I hope it was worth it.



  7. #47
    Join Date
    Feb. 25, 2012
    Location
    Montana
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    2,860

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    Quote Originally Posted by LauraKY View Post
    I don't know that I would have made the threat in the first place...
    Nope.Consequences are not threats! If a family member wants to use my car but decide to ddrive on a suspended license, that would be a no. If someone gets a DUI they will not be using my car. Those are not threats. Those are consequences of behavior. They can decide to drive and drive and whatever, but, they will not be using my car. I really try to keep my feelings out of it. If clients have dirty UAs, they will not get visitation with their children. They have selected an option that has particular consequences associated with it. It really is an excellent lesson; if you play another hand of hearts, you will not have time to read a story before bed. It doesn't matter which one you pick, but eachwill have different consequences.

    Horses are not some kind of right. They are a privilege. This girl, who may be very nice, made a particular choice that resulted in her losing the horse. And losing her aunt's trust. It may be in the future things could work out but maybe not.


    6 members found this post helpful.

  8. #48
    Join Date
    May. 4, 2008
    Location
    Virginia
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    1,332

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    LBM, while I hope you won't judge all teens by your niece, I agree with your decision not to send the horse. You gave her a very specific set of consequences that would happen if she had the party, she went ahead with it anyway. Now you are keeping your word, good for you! Niece should have at least one person in her life who keeps her word and shows niece that if/then consequences exist.
    Now, I DO think you should follow it up with the opportunity for her to earn redemption. This is a golden chance for you to shape her behavior going forward. What do you want from her (grades, attendance, lack of smoking/drinking, hold a job, etc) in order to be willing to send pony to her in 3 or 4 months?
    And while my daughter who is 14 now has handled my illness and her horsey deprivation with grace and hard work, she's not always a perfect kid. She just got her cellphone back after 2 months without it because I checked her text messages and found cuss words she was using in her texts. She had been warned previously that I will not tolerate foul language from her whether it is in conversation in person, email or text. She did it anyway, and so she lost her phone. Hopefully she's learned her lesson, because this time we told her do it again and the phone goes away permanently. My mom needs a cell phone as she can't afford a phone of her own so we told her it goes to grandma if she screws up again. We can barely afford the phones, so if she isn't going to honor what she has with meeting our expectations she will not have the luxury of a cell phone. Sorry. If=then. She wouldn't learn a THING if I didn't actually follow through and take the phone away. But I got a lot of leverage out of the hoops for her to jump through to get it back. And it was more of an inconvenience for ME for her to not have a phone as it made it harder for me to keep in touch with her from the hospital, but I couldn't not follow through on my word and neither can LBM. She absolutely needs to stick to what she said would be the consequences of having a party she'd been warned not to have.

    *ETA...DD tried to convince me that the words she used, h#!! and d@&$, weren't swear words and everyone uses them every day! Sorry! Yes, they are curse words, no they don't make you sound more adult, and no you cannot use that excuse to avoid the pre-published consequences for cussing in text messages.
    Sorry to see xtranormal is gone
    For funnies, search youtube for horseyninjawarrior!

    Www.caringbridge.org/visit/mysecretgarden


    3 members found this post helpful.

  9. #49
    Join Date
    Nov. 15, 2005
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    NY
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    6,674

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    Absolutely agree that poor choices need to be met with consequences.

    Thing is, now that she has lost the horse, what reason/motivation is there for her to stop partying, chasing popularity, and making even more bad choices?

    You can't rewrite history or know how things would have gone had the horse not hinged on no party... but what if, in that alternate universe we can not access, getting the horse and subsequent activities surrounding stables and riding was the reason she chose to leave this path of partying/popularity?
    Yo/Yousolong April 23rd, 1985- April 15th, 2014

    http://notesfromadogwalker.com/2012/...m-a-sanctuary/



  10. #50
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    Jun. 24, 2006
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    Angela, she is still riding. But she just doesn't have her own horse. So I think it can still be a goal to work towards for her.


    2 members found this post helpful.

  11. #51
    Join Date
    Mar. 26, 2011
    Location
    Pennsylvania
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    5,165

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    Quote Originally Posted by amastrike View Post
    Minor point, but by definition punishments do not encourage behavior. Reinforcements encourage (good) behavior, punishments discourage (bad) behavior.


    I don't think it's too harsh, but perhaps say if the kid stays out of trouble for 2 months (or whatever), she can have the horse, but if she messes up again, she's SOL.
    I think you knew that I meant that a good punishment is a learning opportunity.

    Paula
    He is total garbage! Quick! Hide him on my trailer (Petstorejunkie).



  12. #52
    Join Date
    Nov. 14, 2001
    Location
    B.C., Canada
    Posts
    334

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    I agree with the decision. The niece knew what the consequence was and chose not to have a horse, hope the party was worth it.

    Few years ago, we sold our rental house and I heard that the young tenants were planning a huge party the night before they were to move out. They assured me they weren't but when I got home my stepdaughter informed me that it was all over MSN messenger that the party was on...

    I was the first guest! I walked in and informed them that there was no party and to ensure this I sat out in my car from 7pm-2am (when the responsible tenant returned) and turned away well over a hundred kids. At the time, I was a youth and family counsellor and knew the majority of the kids so they quickly listened and must have gone to someone else's home.


    4 members found this post helpful.

  13. #53
    Join Date
    Aug. 12, 2010
    Location
    Westford, Massachusetts
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    4,023

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    Quote Originally Posted by alittlegray View Post
    And it was more of an inconvenience for ME for her to not have a phone as it made it harder for me to keep in touch with her from the hospital, but I couldn't not follow through on my word and neither can LBM.
    That is sooo often the case with good, effective, consequences for kids! They are usually a huge inconvenience for the parents...I wonder how many parents bail on consequences because of it. Good for you for sticking to it, even in trying circumstances. Your DD is a lucky girl, whether she knows it now or not .


    2 members found this post helpful.

  14. #54
    Join Date
    Nov. 15, 2005
    Location
    NY
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    Cananqua, my mother/stepdad did that.
    Sis worked at a restaurant, closed late [11?] and she would then go 'out' with co-workers which is where her partying/drinking started.

    Why did mom keep letting sis take her car to work instead of dropping sis off/picking up?
    It was too late for mom to stay up for her to pick her up at 11.
    Yo/Yousolong April 23rd, 1985- April 15th, 2014

    http://notesfromadogwalker.com/2012/...m-a-sanctuary/



  15. #55
    Join Date
    Dec. 18, 2006
    Location
    NY
    Posts
    4,832

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    Quote Originally Posted by trubandloki View Post
    I am confused why this reasoning would make it OK?

    Is it impossible to tell a friend at the door, "Oh, I am so sorry, I cancelled the party I can not let you inside"? Or if you do not have the balls to do it yourself call the police and tell them that you are a minor, some friends came over and started a party and you want them out but you can not get them to leave. Then the police will be the bad guys.

    It is not the fault of others that she had a party in her house. It is her fault. Period.
    I didn't say it was "ok" - just that she may not have lied to the OP and said she wasn't going to have one, but then did.

    However, this is a 15 year old. Do you really expect them to always do the *right* thing? Peer pressure is tough stuff. So when kids show up - do you really expect her to call the cops on them? I know that I didn't when the same thing happened to me....I'm not proud of that, but at the time I don't even think it occurred to me, and I was at least 17 at the time...maybe i was even older? Of course drinking laws were different then but still...it was wrong and I knew it.

    Personally, it sounds like the situation is a much bigger mess than it sounded like in the first post. Guardians are grandparents who don't seem to have much control; the OP is trying to be part of the solution from out of state.

    I don't think I would have taken the horse away for bad behavior if the whole reason to introduce the horse was to keep the kid from doing bad things. The "solution" is gone, and now all that is left is the "problem."

    Now what?


    6 members found this post helpful.

  16. #56
    Join Date
    Jan. 17, 2008
    Location
    New England
    Posts
    1,982

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    I do not live out of state. My horse does. I live in a differant part of the state.

    When I am ready to speak to her, I will tell her that she CAN earn the horse back. But I am not giving in. It's not a be-all end-all with the horse, just right now.

    Niece knows she was wrong. Now she is backpeddling to try to cover her tracks so I will give her the horse. She messed up, and I am not rewarding her for that.

    She will continue to lesson, but not on my horse.
    mykidshavefourlegs.blogspot.com


    8 members found this post helpful.

  17. #57
    Join Date
    Nov. 25, 2004
    Location
    Charleston, SC
    Posts
    939

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    Quote Originally Posted by paulaedwina View Post
    Personally I think it's too harsh.

    1. Punishments are effective when they encourage better behavior. So painful consequences of the right degree will force better contemplation in the future. If you make a punishment too harsh then the lesson gets lost in the injury of the punishment.

    For example, I teach first year associate degree students science. When students plagiarize (it happens for many reasons) the first time I want them to feel the pain of plagiarism, I don't want them to be shut down. So we penalize them with penalties and give a written warning. We would not expel them at that point because we want them to do better and to succeed. Which leads me to point 2;

    2. You said you enticed her with this horse to keep her out of trouble by keeping her occupied and in the barn. Well she showed her typical lack-of-forethought adolescent behavior and at this pivotal moment you took away the thing that might have helped keep her on the straight and narrow. The punishment was too hard.

    JMO
    Paula
    I heartily disagree.

    This 15yo (plenty old enough to know consequences and accept them) made the choice to have the party. She knew what would happen if she had the party, and she decided she could get away with it.

    Even if she did cancel the party and people showed up, you turn them away at the door. Simple and efficient. I hardly doubt these teenagers busted through her door and started a ruckus without her help.

    Just the way of the world. Although it sounds like this niece didn't value the horse that much anyway, so I'm not sure the horse was that much of an incentive.
    Lucy (Precious Star) - 1994 TB mare; happily reunited with her colt Touch the Stars


    8 members found this post helpful.

  18. #58
    Join Date
    Mar. 12, 2006
    Location
    Ocala
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    1,292

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    If this kid is serious about this horse, or lessons, let her make the first advance. An apology, and showing she is truly interested and can be responsible would be a great step. I dont have kids, so take this for what its worth (zero), but it just seems to me that parents, or aunts, push things on to kids, wanting them to do things more than the kids want them themselves. Maybe horses are just not that important to her, maybe theres something else she can get an interest in, that makes her want to do it bad enough to straighten up. You cant force an interest on a kid. Sounds like this kid needs to understand boundaries and what the word NO means.

    I know when I was a teen and had my horse, if I had pulled something like that, I wouldnt have been able to see that horse for 6 months. And it would have killed me, so I never would have done it in the first place.



  19. #59
    Join Date
    Apr. 5, 2011
    Posts
    959

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    LBM, stick to your guns. If she's this irresponsible now, how will she treat your retired pony when she moves and you can't be there to monitor the situation?

    My 18-year old niece decided she wanted to buy my car. Like an idiot, I listened to her and my brother when they promised to make every payment, every month. Three years later, what I had was a twice-wrecked, twice-lied about car that was worthless, and a niece who had jumped ship on the $4000 she owed me to run away to Arkansas and marry a child porn addict. At least it was just a car, and not a living thing.

    So yes, I feel your disgust and disappointment, and I will support you 100% in your decision!


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  20. #60
    Join Date
    Oct. 12, 2006
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    263

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    I was a youth whose mom went back and forth between feeling like she is rewarding me with horses, to threatening to take horses away.

    In the end, I am glad I had the horse and my mom did not punish me the way you are punishing your niece. While I did attend the parties, have my grades slip in school, experiment with different intoxicants, in the end I could always go to the horses and feel grounded. I don't know where I would be without the horses in my life that helped me get through my teenagehood, and my mom realized this and took the harm reduction approach rather than the tough love approach.

    While I understand you are angry/upset, and it is your horse, are you mad because she messed up (a very typical teenage behaviour), or because you feel some personal slight has been taken against you due to her lying. By the sounds of it, it looks like the latter. In the end it is your horse and your decision, but I don't think it is the appropriate way to go about this.

    Also, I am a youth probation officer as well, and have experience with teenagers who mess up. Look up motivational interviewing, find a way to connect to your niece in order to foster positive behavioural change that is also important to her.

    Good luck.
    Member OMGiH I loff my mares clique!!!


    2 members found this post helpful.

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