If any of us know anything, it's that teenagers can be a pain in the... you know where. It's just one of those assurances in life, and no matter how you try to sugarcoat it or play it down, teenagers are hard to handle. And that's what makes the following story so great.
Enter Heidi Johnson, a fed up mother to 13-year-old Aaron, who after growing rather tired of her son's bad attitude and lack of respect after he lied about doing his homework, decided to get the ultimate revenge - if he wanted to act like an adult and be treated like an adult, it was time to treat him like an adult.
So she wrote the following letter:
When Heidi posted the handwritten note to her Facebook page, she provided some background information where she explained that this was nothing more than a way to teach her teenage son a lesson about how hard it can be out in the real world and that he should be appreciative of everything she has provided to him throughout his childhood.
"The child is going to have a rude awakening today after the words he exchanged with me last night," Heidi wrote. "Not only will he find this on the door, but his mattress stripped, and the toys and clothes that I bought confiscated. He will have three options: Buy his own, rent his clothes at $3 a day, or renegotiate his terms of being a child. Mama's done playing games and being a doormat."
Heidi knew there would be some blowback from her son and so she was prepared when Aaron crumbled the note and stormed out of the apartment. When he finally returned, Aaron attempted to stage a "sit it" in his mom's room and said, "Really, what are you going to do? You can't take my stuff."
Luckily, Heidi wasn't forced to do that as Aaron quickly calmed down and brought in some of his electronics and other belongings as a peace offering. With his tone changed, Aaron told his mom he was ready to earn back his belongings.
But did he learn from it?
"When he got home from school, we discussed his day, looked over homework and grades, and then he asked me to write out a list of what I needed him to do today," Heidi wrote. "He did those tasks, and I allowed him a little bit of screen time."
Though there was progress, Aaron wouldn't get back all of his electronics and toys all at once. Instead, Heidi made a deal with her son so that the more he put in at school and around the house, the more he would get in return.
This, however, didn't apply to the electronics, as Heidi noted.
"I keep all the electronics, and allow him to use it during the time I allocate it," she wrote. "If he doesn't give it back when I say time is up, he won't be able to have screen time again for a while. He can earn back some of his other items instead."
But at the end of the day, what drove Heidi to the point where she was left with no other option than to make her son pay for his share of the rent, electricity, and other amenities?
The answer... Tough love.
"I cannot send this child into college or the workforce with the attitude of 'I'll get to it when I get to it' when a superior tells him to get a job done," Heidi wrote. "That is the real world. I am even more forgiving than that. I will ask once and then give a warning. But when I am ignored time and time again, there are going to be greater consequences."
Heidi didn't want Aaron going through life thinking that everything would handed to him on a silver platter, and so she thought this would serve as a great lesson to learn from.
"It was a lesson about gratitude and respect from the very beginning," Heidi wrote. "Sometimes, you have to lose it all to realize how well you really had it."
At the end of the day, Heidi said this experiment has done nothing but help rebuild the relationship between she and her son. She might have gone to extreme measures to prove a point, but Heidi believes it was worthwhile in the end.
But what do you think? Was Heidi in the right or the wrong? Sound off in the comments below.