Monday, October 26, 2009

So I Open The Door, And There's The Police ...

Not long ago, I wrote a post about the choices kids make.

The good, and bad.

At the time, one of my kids had made a good choice.

Last night, the other one made one that wasn't so good.

Boys were downstairs with a friend.

I was upstairs in the bathroom.

Suddenly, the phone started making this strange ring.

I thought it was the boys, messing around with the phone, so I yelled down from the top of the stairs for them to stop.

They said they weren't the cause of it.

I found the phone, answered and heard something along the lines of;

'This is 911, someone from this number just called the emergency line.'

My jaw dropped.

He'd done it!

He'd actually done it!

Through gritted teeth, I answered, 'Oh REALLY!?!', as I immediately headed for the basement.

I told the 911 operator that I assumed it had been my 9 yr old son who had made the call, as I looked at Adam and asked, 'WHY did you call 911?!'

'I didn't MEAN to!', came the wail from my boy, who KNEW at that moment he had done wrong ... BIG TIME!

Lines were crossed. Boundaries demolished.

I was pissed.

The 911 operator heard it in my voice too. I know she did.

You can't hide that kind of pissed.

I just couldn't believe, that after all the times he'd 'threatened' to call 911, because although it wasn't an emergency, for whatever reason, he felt he was being treated unjustly, because I'd said no, or stop, or wouldn't do or give or ... whatever it was he wanted at that moment.

Or if he was arguing with his brother.

We had talked about it. Many times.

Exactly what the emergency service is for, and what it's not.

And yet, after all our talks, here he'd gone and done it.

Arrraaaggghhhh! Wrong choice!

So I ask her if she'd like me to put Adam on the phone, to explain WHY he called, and she said no, that wasn't necessary, but that all 911 calls have to be followed up with a police visit, and they would be there shortly.

She also confirmed that there wasn't an actual emergency.

I clarified that it had been nothing more than a child choosing to do something he shouldn't have.

Then, I got off the phone, told Adam the police were on their way, and suggested it was time for the friend to leave.

Then, we waited.

During that time, the seriousness of what he'd done, sank in for Adam.

Regardless WHAT the police said, he already knew he was in trouble as far as I was concerned.

He was extremely upset, nervous, and despite reassurances from Alec and I, was convinced the police were going to take him with them.

About 20min later, the headlights turned up the driveway.

Alec, not about to miss out on THIS, shouts from his window perch, 'There's TWO of them!'

So, I open the door, and there's the police ...

I invited them in, asked Alec to leave the room with the dog, and asked Adam to come down off the stairs, and into the room, and speak to the officers.

He reluctantly explained what had happened.

He had dialed, and hung up immediately, thinking that someone would have to answer before the call would go through.

He was wrong.

The police were very understanding.

They asked him a few questions, we chatted a bit, and they shared that the call they had before ours, was for the exact same reason.

I think that was an attempt to make BOTH of us feel better lol.

They also had a serious discussion with Adam about the importance of understanding the rules and use of the 911 system. And that what he did was wrong, but he wasn't in trouble.

He apologized.

I also shared how, 'I'm going to call 911' has sometimes been used as a threat.

They had a serious discussion with him about that as well.

I thanked them for that, and said I hoped hearing it from someone OTHER than his mother would now make it real.

I also thanked them for coming, and having the talk that they did.

Adam thanked them for not taking him away.

After they left, I told Adam I hoped he'd learned his lesson.

And that if he EVER thought of doing that again, when there wasn't an emergency, that he'd better think twice, because now, HE was in their SYSTEM, and maybe next time, he wouldn't be so lucky, and he WOULD end up leaving with them.


Tough Love. I'm all over it.



Sue said...

Oh my goodness...

You did good, Mom. I hope he learned his lesson, too.

Employee No. 3699 said...

You're a good mom. It's nice that the police gave him the 411 on calling 911.

Danie said...

A lesson I'm sure he'll NEVER forget!

I'm all for tough love,too.

Ginny said...

I'm just waiting my turn...

Confessions Of A Working Mom said...

I think you did a *great* job teaching your son a lesson about this subject. A lot of parents would have done whatever they could to keep the police away from their door, but you used it (and them) as a way to teach your children about what is and is not appopriate. Kudos to you!


Kim's Korner said...

Sue - Thanks! Oh My Goodness weren't exactly my choice of words ... in private ... AFTER I got off the phone with the 911 operator, of course ;-)

And yes, I sincerely hope he learned his lesson too. Because if he does it again, I won't be standing in their way if they want to 'cuff him and take him downtown' ;-)

3699- - Aw thanks, but I didn't feel like a very good mom when I had the 911 operator on the phone, with no emergency :-(

And yes, I'm glad they took the time, and had the patience to have a talk with him. They were VERY nice about the whole thing.

Ginny - LOL if it happens girlfriend, I'm here for you! I'm thinking you'll hadle it with your own brand of 'am i really living this moment???' humour ;-)

Elizabeth - WELCOME! Well, I didn't really see any other way to handle it, other than to bury myself under a mound of blankets on my bed, curled up in the fetal position, hands over ears screaming 'GO AWAY GO AWAY GO AWAY GO AWAY' ... but I didn't think that would go over very well, with either the kids ... or the police LOL.

Gotta do what ya gotta do, right? Even when you're completely dying of embarrassment on the inside ;-)

loving bingo said...

This kind of prank is absolutely not entertaining! Get him to watch movies that involves lying is never good..that in cases of emergency (real emergency), people won't believe in you anymore because of what you did in the past of kidding around. Anyway, you did a good job about disciplining your kid and so did the officers!
Talking about 911, I remember a 4 year old girl was calling for some math problem! now, that is entertaining! :)

sarah @ i run with scissors said...

Well if that's the worst he does you're doing okay. By the way I totally have this picture of this kid totally freaking out that he's getting taken away by the police. That must have been the longest wait of his little life.

Nick, Ali and Kendall said...

Oh my goodness! I did this once when I was little too but I really did do it on accident. Luckily the police didn't come but i can imagine that having them there to talk to your son definitely did the job! :D Hurray for tough love, sometimes it's just what the mommy ordered!

Karen, author of "My Funny Dad, Harry" said...

Oh, no wonder you were ticked off. I don't blame you one bit.

Congrats on your SITS day!

gamommy2two said...

For some reason, I see this exact scenario playing out for me in the next ten years....You handled it quite well :)

Sandy said...

Oh I have been there! My boys called one day after an assembly at school about 911. I was so mad!

Marie Cole said...

I remember being at a pizza party and one of the dares was to call 911 from the pay phone, duh....Yes we all got in trouble for it....We were just curious....

KimJohnson said...

You did a great job of handling it! Sidenote... 911 can be dialed from a cell phone that does NOT have a service plan on it. My kids were playing cops and robbers one day. They had my old cell phone...called 911 and it went through. They were terrified and I had to call back and explain. Good times

Dawn said...

two of my girls have done this-both like your son-we've had the police here twice and luckily they were as nice as your were and did the same thing with my girls.....hope my youngest 3 never get this idea

Molly Burke, Queen of Confidence said...

I like your mommy style, girl!

Happy SITS Day!

Molly Burke CPCC MSU
Queen of Confidence
"Everyone can use an extra boost of confidence every now and again."

Just Another Mom of 2 said...

Oh my goodness! I have been lucky to not have experienced this- yet anyway! I'm sure my time will come. Hopefully he learned his lesson!

Kristin @ Meanbean said...

holy child's a 7 year old girl, and I can only imagine what she'll get into as she gets older. You have your hands full with these two...they sound like such great kids, who just mess up sometimes. You seriously sound like an awesome mom. Tough love is important when things are serious, you did good!

Nikki said...

o wow that is scary!!! I have a story like this one only I was the one who called 911! lol I was at a friends house and their phone must've had the numbers stuck because I tried to dial 917 a few times and everytime the numbers would stick or wouldn't do the beep that numbers do when you press them. anyways apparently I had unknowingly dialed 911 during the weekend of her baby shower that I was visiting for! they came to the house and we explained the situation. it was horrible and embarresing!

Kathy G said...

Oh , I felt how pissed you were, hope he learned his lesson. Funny towards the end as you gave Adam that warning , I thought back at my own mother's warning. It went something like this , if I ever thought about calling 911 because I was upset, she was going to make sure between the call and the arrival there was an emergency for them to respond to. lol. Really enjoyed your posts and congrats on your SITS feature

Aleta said...

I don't have children and 911 wasn't around when I was a kid, but I can well imagine the temptation for kids to dial it. I like your reaction and I'm glad the police came out to discuss the situation with your son. Nice that they took the time to make a solid impression of the right and wrong of it!

gina said...

when my third was about 1 and a half she somehow dialed 911 while i was in the shower. never hanging it up- it didn't ring back. (in hindsight - giving your toddler the phone to play with while you take a shower is probably not a good idea but i WANTED a shower. Apperently, by the time I got dressed and came downstairs 20 minutes had gone by and there were four officers walking the perimeters of my house checking windows and doors and looking for an emergency. EMBARRASSED, um yeah.

simplysandi said...

Stopping by from SITS. Looks like he learned a good lesson. You handled it well.

Joann Mannix said...

Such an awesome way to handle it.

My daughter meant to call her father one time. His cell phone number begins with a 9 and a 1. She accidentally hit another 1 and when they answered, she hung up. That means an automatic police visit. She didn't inform me that she'd done this, until the cops were at our doorstep. As soon as I opened the door and they reported someone had called 911, she burst into tears and confessed.

I'm pretty sure that will never happen again in our house.

w said...

well. at least he knows how to dial 9-1-1... right?

also. once, when i opened my doors, i saw the cops. but they were across the street. mainly because the boys over there started a fire. a 50 ft fire. so. i just thought i'd share that. i'm in a sharing mood.

happy sits day!

The Blogoholic said...

Makes me feel a little better about when my kid called 9-1-1. In his case, he saw a tornado on the news, and knew you called to tell them about an emergency. He just didn't realize that if it was on the news, they already knew.

Kim said...

I always wanted all boys. Now, after having a girl and hearing all the stories of my friend' boys...I'm praying I have all girls!!

Gamma Sharon said...

Good for you Mom! I bet he never does it again! Lol