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BOTD 04-13-2016 Jumping In To Trouble? A DMK Production

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Bransom Postmaster
A DMK Production

You have a trampoline in your back yard for your sons and nephews to use.  Last year, your oldest son got injured on the trampoline (not severely but it did require an ER visit) which prompted you to install a locking safety net on the trampoline and to put some new rules in place.  None of the boys are to use the trampoline unless you or another adult are present.  All of the boys are aware of the rules. You keep the key to the locked safety net on a hook in your bedroom closet.  

Today your nephews (your brother's sons) are over for a visit.  Your spouse is at work but you have the day off. It is a nice day and you decide to grill out but you realize you are out of charcoal.  The trip to and from the local super store will take you about forty-five minutes.  You ask your oldest son, thirteen year old Jeremy, to keep an eye on his brother and cousins while you go for charcoal.  Jeremy has done this before on a short term basis with no incident.  

You are able to make it to the store and back in a half hour.  When you pull in the first thing you see is this:

Wade - 8 (Nephew,) Jared - 9 (Son), and Wally - 6 (Nephew)
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You chase the boys off of the trampoline and ask them about the rules.  They admit that they got bored and so they took the key from your closet. The boys say they thought it would be alright since Jeremy was in charge and he was there in the house.  They say they tried to ask Jeremy but he told them he was busy and to get lost.

You go inside and note just how it is that Jeremy is busy:

Jeremy - 13 (Son)
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You do spank your sons if needed and you also have permission to spank your nephews.

Will you be lighting any fires other than in your grill today?

Can you dig it?


It's a safety violation. Hard to imagine I'd "hide" the key so in plain sight that 9 year olds can easily find it. And Jeremy can't have been keeping even half an eye on the boys if they were able to find the key, unlock the trampoline, and play without him noticing.

I think there are about to be four boys standing up during dinner. For Jeremy, it's a violation of trust, and for the other three, a rules violation of which they were all well aware. Not the crime of the century, but a message will be sent.


Let's see:

1) I've only been gone half an hour.

2) I asked Jeremy to 'keep an eye' on the younger ones which to me doesn't mean watching them constantly but just checking on them now and again.

3) The young ones say 'we got bored' - mmm... in under half an hour?

4) If that is true then surely they can't have been on the trampoline for more than a few minutes in which case it is a further get out for Jeremy.

5) If untrue then it implies this was a plan put into operation as soon as the opportunity arose which puts Jeremy in the firing line.

So, the young one are in trouble bounce bounce bounce but Jeremy's situation depends on what further information I can extract from them.


It was a safety issue and even if Jeremy was dong as I asked which he wasnt , he is not an adult. He could at least have played with that toy outside and I thiink if he knows the rules he should have vetoed the trampoline idea altogether till I got home. Of the rest Jared is in the most trouble as he presumably was the only one who knew where the key was and fetched it without permission. He also as the elder of the 3 could have stopped this but chose to disobey  so very warm seats for my sons. If the other two knew the rules it is age appropriate hand spankings, pretty mild for Wally if he just went along with the others


Though I'm not pleased with Jer for telling them "to get lost" while in charge I don't think it's fair to blame him for the stunt the littles played. At 9 Jar knows exactly that he wasn't supposed to get the key, especially after Jer (probably) refused to get it for them, if they even bothered to ask in the first place.


Editor Extraordinaire
Lots of good points in several answers. The younger boys are definitely in trouble. I'm inclined to give Jeremy a pass. My instructions to "keep an eye" on the others are pretty vague. I'd imagine Jeremy's role is loose supervision of the others and calling 911 or me in the event of an emergency. Surely no adult, including me, watches the younger ones every second, so I don't think it's fair to expect Jeremy to do that. He blew them off, but I'd probably have done the same thing. They're old enough to know their boundaries and to obey standing rules.



I'm inclined to Agee with Kat....

I do feel he should have kept a better eye out and will explain how in future he will not be hiding out but will be where he can see them.....

The little will get there spankings and loose the right to play on the trampoline for a couple days!

Mad Mad me and my Besty got nailed on this a few times and it was never intentional but we would get distracted (doing a chore) but it was always our fault and half the time her sibs would get off but not us... Rolling Eyes .... As a parent now I get it!

Hugs kal

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