The Edmond Sun

Features

February 1, 2014

Bad behavior steps on the path to growing up

EDMOND — Q: Our 13-year-old son has had an iPod for the last 3 years. We’ve always made use of the parental restrictions to make sure that he could only access “clean” music, movies, and websites. When I recently checked the device, however, I discovered that he’s been listening to the most awful and explicit rap music, some of which I would describe as pornographic. Apparently, he’s been able to hide this from us for about a year. We have taken away his iPod forever, grounded him until further notice, suspended his video game privileges, and banned violent video games forever. He had us completely fooled! He’s an honor student, polite, calm, and completely obedient. He’s never given us any big problems until now. Are we being too harsh here?

A: I agree that this is a serious betrayal of trust, but the important issue is whether or not your son is remorseful. If he feels bad about what he’s done, good. If, on the other hand, he’s defending himself or attempting to minimize the problem, then you have another problem on top of the betrayal.

Since you didn’t mention reactions of that sort, I’m going to give your son the benefit of doubt and posit that this is an example of an otherwise good kid doing what otherwise good teen boys sometimes do — to wit, they conduct little experiments with being bad. Most of the experiments in question — and again, I’m talking about otherwise good kids — do not indicate that the child in question is about to go off the proverbial deep end. In other words, a good kid can do something really bad and still be a good kid who grows up to be a good person.

A significant amount of concern would be warranted if your son was not remorseful, was trying to rationalize and otherwise talk his way out of this, was being more generally deceitful, and especially if he was beginning to engage in other problem behaviors with other problem kids. But in the absence of any of that, this is probably nothing more than a “glitch.”

My highly speculative (but experienced) explanation: The “cool” kids probably listen to the disgusting garbage in question, and your son probably just wanted to experience some of what it’s like to be cool. (By the way, please make no mistake about it: I do not think listening to vulgar music is cool in the slightest. Putting junk media into one’s head is as unhealthy as putting junk food into one’s body … much, much more unhealthy, in fact.) As I said, if he’s not trying to become popular with the supposedly “cool” kids by engaging in other rebellious behavior then this is nothing to be worried about.

For what it’s worth, I approve of the consequences you levied. I don’t think they’re too harsh at all. He did a wrong thing, you did several right things, and now it’s time for everyone to move on.

One final word: You’ve learned, the hard way, that most of today’s kids can figure out how to get around parental controls. And if they can’t, they know someone who can. Today’s parents need much sharper eyes than their parents needed, for sure.

FAMILY PSYCHOLOGIST John Rosemond answers parent    questions at parentguru.com. His column is distributed by MCT Information Services.

1
Text Only
Features
  • 1,000th baby group.jpg INTEGRIS welcomes 1,000th birth since opening in October 2011

    Being the father of a new baby boy is pretty exciting, but being the father of INTEGRIS Health Edmond’s 1,000th baby made it even more special.
    “When we got to the hospital, the night-shift nurse told us we were in a race with another couple who had gotten there at 7 a.m.,” said Bryan Lane, the new baby’s father.

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • okco fair 100.jpg Oklahoma County Free Fair offers competition, free fun

    Oklahoma County residents are invited to compete in the 100th annual Oklahoma County Free Fair as they take part in many activities scheduled just for them.
    The county fair will get underway Aug. 21-23 at the Oklahoma State Fair Park and will be highlighted by its open adult and youth along with 4-H and Oklahoma Home and Community Education categories, as well as its special contest and activities.

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • Grieving children find support at Calm Waters

    Calm Waters Center for Children and Families offers free support groups for children, ages 3–18 and their families whose lives have been affected by death or divorce.
    Oklahoma continues to rank among the top states in the nation for unintentional and premature deaths, leaving single parents raising children. Additionally, Oklahoma continues to have one of the highest divorce rates per capita in the nation. These tragedies leave children feeling isolated, sad, and uncertain.

    July 31, 2014

  • Church hosts adult Vacation BIble School

    “Jesus is the Source” will be the theme of Edmond First Church of the Nazarene’s second annual adult Vacation BIble School.
    The progam will be from 6-8:30 p.m. Aug. 4-7 at the church, located at 3001 S. Boulevard. It will include a light supper at 6 p.m. and songs, games, storytelling and crafts beginning at 6:30 p.m.
    Presenters will include members of the congregation acting as Bible characters and a special performer will be in from Texas.

    July 31, 2014

  • UCO, local Y create community garden

    A new community garden is providing a transformative learning opportunity for students and helping stock UCO’s Central Pantry.
    The University of Central Oklahoma’s Volunteer and Service Learning Center and the Edmond Rankin YMCA are sponsoring the garden, providing a transformative learning opportunity for students, and organic fruits, vegetables and herbs for the food bank.

    July 31, 2014

  • NAMI classes begin in September

    NAMI Edmond North-OKC, the local organization of the National Alliance on Mental Illness, will offer its Family-to-Family Education Program beginning Sept. 2. It will contine Sept. 4 and 8-9. Classes will be at Crossings Community Church, Quail Springs United Methodist Church, Francis Tuttle Technology Center (Portland campus), Tinker AFB Chapel and the Thunderbird Club House in Norman.
    NAMI Family-to-Family is a free 12-session education program for family caregivers of adults living with mental illness. The sessions are offered once a week for a few hours each.

    July 30, 2014

  • clinic 1.jpg Edmond church to host free eye clinic

    An Edmond church and Feed the Children are partnering to provide a free eye clinic.
    Individuals will be able to receive a free vision test and free prescription eye glasses from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Aug. 9 at the Waterloo Road Baptist Church, 3100 E. Waterloo Road. All ages are welcome and registration is not required.

    July 29, 2014 2 Photos

  • UCO forensic volunteer wants to aid more agencies

    A four-person group of forensic investigators who volunteer their time to help smaller Oklahoma police departments isn’t enough to meet demand, a member said.
    Kama King, who recently completed her graduate research and will be a member of the faculty at the University of Central Oklahoma’s Forensic Science Institute, said outside of full-time jobs, members of the group volunteer to assist these agencies.
    As her career progresses, King hopes to help establish a permanently funded organization available to any agency in the state to assist in remains recovery as well as related training.

    July 29, 2014

  • jc_ITS map.jpg City to improve traffic flow

    The Edmond City Council this week approved a services agreement with Electronic Technology, Inc. For the  installation of Intelligent Transportation Systems’ video wall system at a cost of $314,620. The vote was 3-0.
    ITS is a fiber optic, wireless or hybrid communication system of monitoring road events and equipment in the field, data archiving and predicting traffic volume, said Kent Kacir, an engineer with Kimley-Horn and Associates Inc.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • jc_Earp Marlin 2 - photo credit Noel Winters.jpg Shootout of a sale

    An original article of the Wild West will be made available at auction Thursday. The rifle of legendary lawman Wyatt Earp will be part of the J. Levine Auction & Appraisal’s Summer Quarterly Auction in Scottsdale, Ariz.
    Earp was an Arizona deputy sheriff and deputy town marshal in Tombstone, Ariz. He is legendary for playing a key role in the gunfight at the O.K. Corral. He died in 1929 at age 80.
    Wyatt Earp collector Barry Tapp of Edmond will be selling his 1895 Wyatt Earp Marlin rifle at the auction. The rifle has an estimated value between $50,000 and $75,000. It includes authentication documentation from Tombstone Heritage Museum, according to the auction house

    July 28, 2014 2 Photos