One of the joys of parenting is determining what kind of repercussions to dole out when your kid does something asinine.
The choice gets more difficult when those kids enter their teen years, when they are notoriously stubborn and make some seriously questionable decisions.
One family in Phoenix, Arizona, used a unique form of correction when their 14-year-old son took their Range Rover for a joyride while they were celebrating their anniversary in Las Vegas.
According to Angel Martinez, the son, he had hand-washed the car and didn’t “have anything to dry it.” So, the logical course of action was to speed down residential streets to dry the car off.
“I just wanted to drive, but I don’t have like a license to, so I just took it,” he told KSAZ-TV this week.
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The neighbors were concerned, and it wasn’t long before the cops were called. The Martinezes were trying to enjoy their vacation when they got a call that brought their carefree time to a screeching halt.
The parents clearly had time to think about a suitable “reward” for their son’s actions — especially because this wasn’t the first shenanigan he’d pulled — and when they got home they started clearing out his room.
“We got back to the house today,” dad Ramon Martinez told KSAZ. “We took all his stuff out, his room is 100 percent empty, and we’re just giving all his stuff away.”
The KSAZ video shows the teen sitting on the end of his bed, which is on the driveway, coolly sipping a cup of water.
A sign — the back of a picture frame — propped up against the corner of the bed has a hand-scrawled message on it: “Sorry I stole my Parents car and was ‘SPEEDING.’”
When asked why they were giving away the nice bedroom set, flat-screen television, name-brand clothing and shoes and various decor items, the dad said it was to make public amends.
“Mostly to like apologize to the neighbors too, you know,” Ramon Martinez said. “He could’ve ran someone over. Something really bad could’ve happened.”
While it’s doubtful the recalcitrant boy paid for his own furnishings, and this punishment is more about unsettling him than hurting his wallet, it certainly is an unusual way to drive a point home.
Maybe sleeping on the couch for a while and losing his designer apparel will force Angel to mull things over.
His parents hope this helps him understand “things like this will not be tolerated” and that his actions do, indeed, have consequences.
“It’s kind of weird,” Angel said, “but like, I think it’s a fair punishment.”
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