Parents have to wear a lot of hats. Not only do they need to provide for their children – make sure they’re fed and have a warm place to sleep – they need to lead by example and show the little ones how to be kind kids so they can grow up to be kind adults. That’s why one mom decided to punish her daughter for making fun of a homeless person – by forcing her to sleep in a tent.
Mom started to second guess her punishment, so she posted her story to Reddit. She quickly found that many other parents supporter her move to punish her daughter for picking on a homeless person and making her experience a night without shelter.
Mom wrote, “I (34F) am a single mother to two girls, ‘Jasmine’ (16F) and ‘Jessica’ (14F). Their dad died when I was pregnant with Jess, and I had to work hard. We hit rock bottom, and I was barely making paycheck to paycheck, but I managed to get a degree, become successful, and we live well. The point is, I know how f***ing hard it is to be at the bottom of society, and my daughters know this, which is why I was livid at my daughter’s actions.
“Yesterday, Jasmine showed me a video of Jessica cussing a homeless man out and telling him, ‘stop asking me for money, you’d earn it yourself if you weren’t so f***ing lazy and spending what you earned on substances.’ When the homeless man complained about the cold (we live in NE England), Jessica responded, ‘Yeah, people camp for fun, even in December, you can’t complain, you’re living someone’s holiday.’ Fury was an understatement for what I felt, as I thought I had raised an empathetic daughter.
“Along with finding the homeless man and making her apologize and help pay for a hotel room for a night for him (she paid £20), as well as signing her up to volunteer at a food bank – I decided to take her up on her offer of sleeping outside. I locked her bedroom door so she couldn’t go in, put a sign on it saying Closed for the holidays, pitched a tent in the garden, and filled it with blankets and the sleeping bag I used when I was camping in Norway on a family holiday as a teen (aka really bloody thermal). I slept in the room closest to the garden for that night, so I was nearby if anything was to go wrong. She was reluctant to do it but chose it over the option of not having access to her phone until the Christmas holidays are over.
“In the morning, she was crying about how horrible it was to wake up on a cold mat and get disrupted sleep due to birds. After comforting her, I asked her would she like to do that everyday like the homeless man. It struck a chord with her, and she was crying over her actions, while even after the £20, she was rolling her eyes and her apology was not sincere. This afternoon, I came home from work to Jessica, making a big meal to donate to the homeless people who live on the road near our house. I was proud of how she turned over a new leaf, and after taking the food to the people, my sister came over. Apparently, my nephew and Jessica were talking at school, and he asked her about her plans for the afternoon, and she said that she was going to cook for the homeless. My nephew asked what triggered that, and Jess told him everything, which he relayed back to his mum. My sister said that my punishment was too harsh, and just £20 and the food bank would have done the trick, and I was acting irrationally due to my past. Now I’m second-guessing myself.”
Other parents agreed that she did the right thing. What do you think?
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