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Mom stirs controversy after enforcing ‘controlling’ household rules: ‘That crossed the line’

Emerald Pellot
·3-min read

A mom with a strict phone policy for her kids wants to know if she crossed the line.

She went on Reddit’s “Am I the A******” to see if she handled things incorrectly when a friend’s child came to visit. The mother, who is a social worker, is aware of the negative effects phones can have on children. So when the friend’s child was over, she took his phone away.

“I have three kids. 14, 11 and 9. I have very strict rules for my kids regarding internet usage, and especially cell phones,” she wrote. “None of them have phones or unrestricted internet access, and this will not change until they are adults that can pay for it themselves/no longer live in my house.”

A friend brought over their two kids to play with hers. The friend is aware of how the mom feels about phones.

“The kids were all in their room while I was making lunch and I heard them laughing hysterically from the other room,” she explained. “I went in and found all five kids crowded around the cellphone of one of the visiting boys. My kids all immediately stopped laughing because they knew this was not okay with me. I then told the kids to go outside and demanded that the boy hand over the phone, promising to give it back when his parents picked them up. He didn’t seem terribly upset and handed it over. They went outside and as far as I knew everything was fine. When his parents called to say they were on their way, I helped them get their things together and gave the phone back.”

When the mom’s friend found out she had taken the child’s phone they were furious.

“I got a call from my friend upset that I took her son’s property and that I had no right to take it from him,” she wrote. “I explained my phone/internet policy to her (which she already knew) and that my job as a parent is to protect my children, not indulge her kids’ entertainment choices. She said some not so nice things and hung up.”

Reddit users did not support the mom’s phone policy.

“It’s also pretty well understood that freakishly cult-like overly controlling parents have negative repercussions on the mental and emotional wellbeing of children as well,” one user said.

“It would have been fine to say; we don’t use cell phones in our home unless you are an adult so please put it away, but you took his property. That crossed the line,” another wrote.

“My opinion about your parenting decisions is irrelevant but you simply have no right to take other kid’s phones,” someone commented.

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