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6 February 2017 - Fatherly Advice

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1 6 February 2017 - Fatherly Advice on Sun Feb 05, 2017 5:27 pm

Jack

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Admin
Dean has been a close friend of yours for a while. You've known him about eight years, his son (and nephews) and your sons have been close friends that entire time, growing up together. The two of you have shared discipline rights over each others kids. Despite the length of your friendship, Dean is over a decade younger than you, has less experience raising kids, and often comes to you for advice (more in the past than recently).

About four years ago, he re-married. His wife, Traci, already had three sons, younger than the son and nephews he was already raising. It's because of his two older step-sons that he's come to you now.


Clayton, now 16, with his youngest brother, Eli -10, and Nolan -15
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Thursday night, Dean and Traci (his wife) went to observe Eli's martial arts class. Dean's oldest son, Doug (now 20) was at work, but there was no worry about leaving Clayton and Nolan alone together. While Clayton can be a bit impulsive, and Nolan often suffers from an overactive mouth, the two of them can stay alone for a few hours without burning down the house - especially when chores and homework are already done.

When they got home that night, Dean felt something was a bit off, but he wasn't sure what. When he got inside, he found Clayton nervously waiting for him. Nolan is nearby looking disgusted.

Clayton explains that they decided to go up to Target, look at video games, and pick up some decent snacks. Since Dean, Tracy, and Eli had taken the SUV, they used Dean's car.

Dean explains that the boys are supposed to check in before leaving the house, and they're not really supposed to use his car without direct permission, but he didn't feel either of these was a major problem. The problem is that, when they were backing up, they hit a buggy that was propped against a curb, and it didn't your fender a bit.

Once again, this isn't a huge problem. Accidents happen. Dean was fairly accepting of this, but called Nolan over, as to explain how things should have been handled. Once again, he didn't feel it was a huge problem, but felt the boys could have handled things better - he just wanted to explain how he would liked to have things go.

The problem was with Nolan's mouth. Nolan hadn't even been driving, but he'd been along, and will have a license soon enough, so Dean felt he sure hear it as well. Nolan, being possessed by a mouth that never knew when to quit, had to start arguing right away, before even hearing where Dean was going. Dean tried to be reassuring, but Nolan didn't want to hear it. Worse, as Nolan arguing irritated Dean, Clayton started to get defensive, pointing out that he hadn't even had to admit what had happened.

Without quite knowing what triggered it, Dean sent the boys to their room, and was pretty angry. A few minutes later, he went up to make one last try, but they seem to have made each other more angry, and they pushed him over the edge. He paddled both of them - bare, with the Jokari paddle, over the side of the bed. It was far from abusive, but had both boys crying a bit before he finished.

They both went to bed quickly after that. At breakfast, Clayton seemed a bit withdrawn, but Nolan was pretty normal (which is how they've always reacted to spankings). The thing is, Dean feels bad about spanking - not because they didn't deserve it for the way they'd talked to him and the lack of respect, but because he hadn't meant to punish them at all, and felt bad he couldn't keep it from escalating.

Now he wants to apologize for what happened, while making them understand that they did earn it, and also while getting his original point through (that it would have been better to text, but that he wasn't actually upset with them). Any advice on how he could do that?


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2 Re: 6 February 2017 - Fatherly Advice on Sun Feb 05, 2017 5:34 pm

AFinch

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Sherrif
I'd say exactly that, and point out that their mouths were the reason they got spanked--not their deeds. They might want to remember that for next time. It's a good life lesson to learn.

3 Re: 6 February 2017 - Fatherly Advice on Sun Feb 05, 2017 6:47 pm

db105

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Trailboss
AFinch wrote:I'd say exactly that, and point out that their mouths were the reason they got spanked--not their deeds.  They might want to remember that for next time.  It's a good life lesson to learn.

That was my thought too. Talk with them now they are all calmer, and tell them exactly what he wanted to tell them. Listen to what they have to say too.

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4 Re: 6 February 2017 - Fatherly Advice on Mon Feb 06, 2017 8:45 am

MemoryMan

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Sherrif
I;d advise to sit them down and tell them we didn't get the chance to talk about what happened last night because their bad attitudes overrode the event and got them a paddling. - That we are going to talk about it now and if they can't discuss it calmly and quietly there's another paddling - and more - on the way.

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5 Re: 6 February 2017 - Fatherly Advice on Mon Feb 06, 2017 9:43 am

David M. Katz

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Marshall
Seems like we have a consensus going and I will keep it going.


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6 Re: 6 February 2017 - Fatherly Advice on Mon Feb 06, 2017 10:42 am

Pi Beta

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Trailboss
Add another "Ditto" to the list!

7 Re: 6 February 2017 - Fatherly Advice on Mon Feb 06, 2017 1:26 pm

Beaver

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Wrangler
I think there is unanimous agreement with respect to this one. Count me in!

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8 Re: 6 February 2017 - Fatherly Advice on Mon Feb 06, 2017 4:34 pm

Jack

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This one was more or less a real event. The 'less' is that Dean actually told me about it nearly a week after it happened, and he was more griping about the situation, rather than asking for advice.

Dean kind of knew this, but I reminded him. It's kind of hard to deal with the two boys together in a lot of situations. Nolan is more of a smart mouth than Clayton. Clayton is more likely to be calm and is easier to talk to, but once something sets him off, he pretty much just has to run through it. Unfortunately, it sounded to me like Nolan's mouth is what set Clayton off.

While Dean didn't give me a transcript of the second discussion, from what he did say, I think MM came very close to the feel of it. The thing I most remember him saying to me was, "I asked them if I could finish what I'd try to say the night before, or if I'd need the paddle again. They were willing to listen that time."


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9 Re: 6 February 2017 - Fatherly Advice on Tue Feb 07, 2017 1:02 pm

db105

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Trailboss
So, apart from being willing to listen, what was their attitude? Were they sorry, did they feel unfairly treated...?

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10 Re: 6 February 2017 - Fatherly Advice on Tue Feb 07, 2017 5:58 pm

Jack

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db105 wrote:So, apart from being willing to listen, what was their attitude? Were they sorry, did they feel unfairly treated...?

I don't remember Dean mentioning that. I'll see if I can do a bit of fishing tomorrow.


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11 Re: 6 February 2017 - Fatherly Advice on Wed Feb 08, 2017 4:50 pm

squarecutter

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Sherrif
First I wouldn't do it over breakfast and I also think Clayton will be more receptive whereas Nolan may want to continue the argument so would try to talk to Clayton alone and clear the air with him.From there I might even get a steer as to what Nolan actually thinks and take it from there

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