Is it okay for parents to violate their children's privacy?

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crenfro

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Hello.

While growing up and into my teens and early twenties, my parents would, at times, listen in to my private phone conversations with my friends without letting me know they were doing so. They recently explained to me, now an older, allegedly grown-up adult myself, that it was their duty to do this to keep me from “getting hurt.” When I told them I’ve long felt it was a lack of respect on their part to act towards me in this way they laughed patronizing at me and told me it was nothing to be upset over, that parents have a right to do these sorts of things.

Any constructive thoughts or (name removed by moderator)ut?
 
My parents also kept a close ear, when I was on the phone to my friends growing up, and I resented it.
But I can tell you , that as a parent of four, my attitude changed.
As long my my children lived under my roof, and were not of legal age, it was my job, as a parent, to make sure they weren’t doing anything illegal or immoral.
If I felt they were trying to be sneaky, and were hiding something, I would check their rooms. One time I found pot, and my son was confronted, and that got taken care of…Thank God.
And another time, one of my daughters friend called, thought I was her, before I could announce who I was, she blurted out, that sneaking out of the house at midnight was a go ! That got taken care of fast !
As far as “checking up” on someone at the age over 18…I think was disrespectful.
There even came a time, as my children turned 18, that I had to let go and learn to trust them and trust that God was looking after them.
Now that they are all married with children of their own, they’re
fretting the day they turn teenagers !! LOL !!
 
My children are afforded privacy until they give me a reason to feel otherwise. As long as they’re getting good grades, are respectful, have good attitudes, etc. then I really don’t have much to worry about. It’s when their “norm” changes that I step in, and I have no problem doing so.

As for being “over 18,” three of my four children will turn 18 before they graduate from high school. I don’t plan on throwing our family rules out the window simply because they celebrated a birthday.
 
Children do not have a right to privacy against their parents. Instead, they have a reasonable expectation of privacy.

– Mark L. Chance.
 
Hello.

While growing up and into my teens and early twenties, my parents would, at times, listen in to my private phone conversations with my friends without letting me know they were doing so. They recently explained to me, now an older, allegedly grown-up adult myself, that it was their duty to do this to keep me from “getting hurt.” When I told them I’ve long felt it was a lack of respect on their part to act towards me in this way they laughed patronizing at me and told me it was nothing to be upset over, that parents have a right to do these sorts of things.

Any constructive thoughts or (name removed by moderator)ut?
no it is not okay and is destructive to their relationship, weakens their authority by abusing it, and almost surely insures that the teen will not come to the parents when they genuinely need help and advice.

the only times the boundaries of privacy can be breeched is when the teen has broken trust in a serious way and the parent needs to act to protect them, such as a good suspicion of risk-taking behavor–and even then it should not be used as a means of belittling or demeaning the teen.
 
Hello.

While growing up and into my teens and early twenties, my parents would, at times, listen in to my private phone conversations with my friends without letting me know they were doing so. They recently explained to me, now an older, allegedly grown-up adult myself, that it was their duty to do this to keep me from “getting hurt.” When I told them I’ve long felt it was a lack of respect on their part to act towards me in this way they laughed patronizing at me and told me it was nothing to be upset over, that parents have a right to do these sorts of things.

Any constructive thoughts or (name removed by moderator)ut?
Having parented 2 teenagers, I agree with your parents, although I did not extend it into the 20’s. Once they were graduated from high school their lives were theirs, although when they lived at home for a while, certain “house rules” were enforced, and if they did not like them, they could live on their own. Such things as–no drugs or booze, no boyfriends or girlfriends staying over, no parties (they could have friends over), and a reasonable expectation of where you were going to be so we could find you in an emergency.
My son found this too restrictive–he moved out, got a job, got his own place, and went to school on his own.

But when they were in our custody, we kept close tabs on them, including snooping in their rooms if we got wind of something, but we told them upfront that we would do this if we felt it necessary, and once or twice we did find it necessary and took corrective action. We were legally and morally responsible for them. They understand this now that they are married and have children of their own.
 
The house belongs to whoever paid for it. If the parents paid for or are paying for it, then the parents make the rules.

If the kids don’t like the house rules, they are free to earn their own money and move out.

In addition, until they reach their age of majority, the parents have parental responsibilities. However, parents CAN sign to allow their children to join the Marines prior to that age. At which time, they would be on their own.
 
Hello.

While growing up and into my teens and early twenties, my parents would, at times, listen in to my private phone conversations with my friends without letting me know they were doing so. They recently explained to me, now an older, allegedly grown-up adult myself, that it was their duty to do this to keep me from “getting hurt.” When I told them I’ve long felt it was a lack of respect on their part to act towards me in this way they laughed patronizing at me and told me it was nothing to be upset over, that parents have a right to do these sorts of things.

Any constructive thoughts or (name removed by moderator)ut?
They are correct, although perhaps didn’t explain it very well.

Sometimes you have to be sneaky, 'cuz kids are even sneakier. When I was a kid, just knowing that my parents were potentially looking in my room, etc. kept me from doing things I shouldn’t have. Some kids just get more “creative” in keeping things from their parents if they know they’re being monitored. 🤷

I agree with this post very much:

"Children do not have a right to privacy against their parents. Instead, they have a reasonable expectation of privacy.

– Mark L. Chance."

:clapping:
 
Unless my children give me a reason to doubt them, I won’t listen to their phone messages or read their emails. I have told them though, and they know this, that if they ever give me a reason to that I will start to violate their privacy.
 
My youngest of 5 is now 19. Yes, I snooped,😉 yes I checked on them and yes now all 5 of them are now happy, well adjusted young adults.
I agree with a previous poster about even though 18 years old, if they are still in H.S. they are still underage in my book. 4 of the 5 were 18 for at least a few months befor graduation. When my youngest daughter turn 18 (now 24) in September and had to go all the way to May as an 18 year old, she was a toughest one but she did it, although it was a struggle;)
Now I have the 3 youngest 19, 21 and 24 still at home, BUT they pay their way, help work the farm, do their chores around the house and respect the rules and I in return, treat them as the adults they are.
 
The house belongs to whoever paid for it. If the parents paid for or are paying for it, then the parents make the rules.

If the kids don’t like the house rules, they are free to earn their own money and move out.

In addition, until they reach their age of majority, the parents have parental responsibilities. However, parents CAN sign to allow their children to join the Marines prior to that age. At which time, they would be on their own.
When my daughter started high school, the Principal had a meeting with with the parents, and said basically the same thing. He said that we owned the house and had the right to go into any room we wanted, house rules were ours to make, and the parents, not the kids, were the boss. That was 20 some years ago, and it still applies. But what is sad is that I see more and more the kids are ruling the roost. Their parents are afraid the kids won’t “like” them if they set limits, and act like friends, not parents. They are afraid that discipline will hurt them emotionally. I hear this at work. They are just plain afraid of their kids. And unfortunately, society sees the results of this kind of parenting.😦
 
Privacy is part of independence and as children grow more independent (which starts when the cord is cut) they can expect more and more privacy. I wish I could have gone out to support myself when I was old enough to be capable of work but it ws against the law. I left home at 16 for that exact reason, and found there was no work. When I see the sign that says “Teenagers, leave home and support yourselves while you still know everything”, I remember how many of us tried to do that very thing and couldn’t find a job. Sure, whoever owns the house can make some rules over it, but does that mean the landlord can read your diary? Or that when you spend the weekend with friends they can listen in on your phone calls? Why would you want to be around anyone who would do that?
 
If the kids are not supervised, then how will the parents know if the kids are stockpiling and using drugs?

How will parents know if the kids are experimenting with sex … you hear very little about sexually transmitted diseases and a lot about the glories of sex.

How will the parents protect their kids from sexual predators who are skillful in using various internet mechanisms?

Independence is great, if it is controlled carefully and channeled carefully. Kids need to be trained and given exercises on how to grow up safely.

Let kids earn money by … doing their chores for pay.

Let kid earn money by … doing parent-generated intellectual tasks … such as filling in the names of states and oceans and countries on blank maps. Or by memorizing math tables. Or by doing math problems. Parents can get this stuff by checking the home-schooling sites such as www.oism.org and making the exercises a profitable game for the kids.

But kids are not ready for independence unless they have been trained and are supervised and “mentored”.

Otherwise they will get distracted by “temptations”. Does anyone here remember the “near occasions of sin”? Kids need to know what they are and how they work, so they can be prepared for it.

We don’t throw out kids into a river to let them independently learn how to swim. We give them lessons and supervision in shallow water; and teach them the techniques they need and how to recognize hazards.

Same thing applies to learning to live independently.
Privacy is part of independence and as children grow more independent (which starts when the cord is cut) they can expect more and more privacy. I wish I could have gone out to support myself when I was old enough to be capable of work but it ws against the law. I left home at 16 for that exact reason, and found there was no work. When I see the sign that says “Teenagers, leave home and support yourselves while you still know everything”, I remember how many of us tried to do that very thing and couldn’t find a job. Sure, whoever owns the house can make some rules over it, but does that mean the landlord can read your diary? Or that when you spend the weekend with friends they can listen in on your phone calls? Why would you want to be around anyone who would do that?
 
Sure, whoever owns the house can make some rules over it, but does that mean the landlord can read your diary?
I was watching one of those Holmes on Homes television programs on fixing up houses. A person who had rented out their house … had not carefully checked out the tenants. The tenants were very nice and quiet and always paid their rent on time.

Unfortunately, the tenants had converted the house into a marijuana “factory” … stealing vast amounts of electricity to heat the place (at the possible expense of the landlord) and the plants pumped so much moisture into the house that there was mold everywhere … all the sheet rock had to be removed and replaced. And holes had been cut all over for air ducts so the smell could be dispersed. The cost to fix the damage was HUGE.

So, yes, a landlord has a responsibility … etc.
 
Of course children must learn responsibility, but that should begin well before they have their own rooms, can write, have phones etc.
As they learn, the parents slowly, gradually let go. Finally the nestlings are fledgelings and one day they stop coming back when the sun sets. In the summer new eggs hatch and it goes on.
 
For those of you who had children turning 18 duing their senior year, how did you keep them from moving out? Most of my friends moved out as soon as they turned 18 (literally the day they turned 18). All but one stayed in school, and she got married to a guy who was in the Marines (they moved to his new duty station). I was in the opposite case, being 17, and had to beg my parents to sign enlistment papers. I know this is supposed to be related to the expectation of privacy, so I guess my question relates to whether these would be considered due to a lack of privacy, or just an inability to get along while living in the same house? If parents and children have fundamentaly different personalities, how are they expected to relate to one another, especially after the child in question turns 18 and is legally an adult? Do you think “snoopy” parents, for lack of a better term, are actually encouraging those children to strike out on their own, earlier than what most of society would deem as acceptable (I am referring to the ones that move out prior to graduation). Sorry if none of this makes sense, it was just kind of interesting (to me) to read the question phrased this way.
 
If my parents had listened in on my phone calls without my knowledge, I would not have been happy. Same with reading a diary or anything like that. Though, I also behaved, so they wouldn’t really have had reason to do something like that at any point.

I got a job when I was sixteen years old and kept it for two years. I also got very good grades. By the time I was sixteen or seventeen I basically had no rules and could go wherever I wanted. Part of the reason for this, though, was that I somewhat set my own rules – I was home by midnight on the weekends, spent most of my time with my best friend or at church or youth group, didn’t go to wild parties, didn’t do anything illegal, etc. When I got a cell phone, I talked to two friends on a regular basis. If I’d been doing suspicious things, I’m sure I would have had rules.

This is very atypical in my experience – most of my friends have much stricter parents.

Back to the original question – no, I don’t think it’s okay for parents to snoop unless they have a good reason.
 
Unless my children give me a reason to doubt them, I won’t listen to their phone messages or read their emails. I have told them though, and they know this, that if they ever give me a reason to that I will start to violate their privacy.
I’m with you, deb.

Also, it’s worth noting that had my parents paid closer attention to what was going on right under their noses and under their roof, they would have spared me some horrible mistakes. My folks were too trusting, even though they thought they were watchful. There were many nights when, if they had only been paying attention, they might have caught me red-handed.
 
My father told me that as long as I lived under his roof, I would abide by his rules and he didn’t care whether I was 16 or 60.
 
IMHO As long as the child is under our roof and we are paying the bills we have the moral obligation to provide both respect for the child and the responsibility to see to it that they are following the house rules and laws of the nation. God expects us to do our best to raise up the child for the glory of God not the glory of man.
 
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