We’re Mean Parents, Cause & Effect, A Life Lesson

We're Mean Parents, Cause & Effect, A Life Lesson

Christmas is over and done with, unfortunately for my 14-year-old son, he refused to make any extra effort to bring his school grades up to where they needed to be for him to be able to get the $300 Nintendo Switch and $60 game, that we bought for him this Christmas, so we had tears this Christmas.

The story is that my 14-year-old son has a D in biology and an F in English, both as a result of not getting his assignments in on time, or in the case of biology, not handing it in at all, dropping 60 points, then passed up multiple opportunities to get extra credit, which would have put him back in the high B’s, but despite multiple requests for him to bring home the work to get it completed, he refused to do so.

We told him a whole month ago what the consequence of his inaction would be. It seems he did not take us seriously and now is living the consequences. My son, as I expected, tried to use his grandmother, who we spend Christmas with, to try to guilt us into letting him play with the new Nintendo Switch. His grandmother immediately, as I expected, said “can’t he play it today as it’s Christmas”, my immediate response is “absolutely not”. This is the fourth year in a row, we have faced this situation, I’m not giving in this year, my son needs to realize he is in the big leagues of High School now, no more letting it slide.

If we continue to let it slide, we are doing our son a disservice, everything he does in school now counts towards his future. This is intended as a life lesson, he cannot just drift through life, playing video games. He needs to earn his Switch, by fulfilling his potential, instead of slacking off, claiming “I’m stupid” expecting us to give him a pass. Bottom line, in life, there’s no such thing as a free lunch, we all have to work to earn our lunch, I don’t enjoy many aspects of my job, but I do it, to secure my family’s financial security, I expect the same from my son, especially at 14 years old, he has no idea how lucky he is.

Because of the change of school agenda going into 2019, my son’s grades have been reset, so he thinks that absolves him of any responsibility, which is partially our fault as, in previous years, we had been lenient and allowed for a ‘reset’ of game privileges. The last two semesters grades count toward his overall GPA, which is well below 3.0 right now. The wife and I agree that we should not even consider letting our son have his game privileges back until February 1, 2019, to make sure he has earned it, not have it given to him because of circumstance, i.e. grades being reset due to a school agenda change.

I just hope that us being mean parents, will shock him into knuckling down, having to earn his game time. Playing video games is a privilege, not a right. Some kids live in situations where having expensive video game consoles is not even an option, some parents cant even afford reduced rate meals in school, let alone $300 game consoles. As I said before, our son has no idea how lucky he is. I grew up with very little, my family was extremely poor, gifts were thin on the ground in my household at Christmas, and I didn’t complain once, it was the hand we were dealt, there’s no point crying over it, no good will come of it.

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