Does She Stay Grounded?

Updated on April 21, 2011
D.S. asks from Fort Worth, TX
15 answers

Last week I grounded one of my daughters from the computer. She is supposed to have all of her stuff done before she can get on the computer. I found out the following morning that she had not made her lunch nor finished her homework. Last night was her last night of restriction. I was in the living room when I heard the muffled sound of both of my daughters belting out 80's hits. I see my bedroom door shut. I open it up and the one who isn't grounded is sitting in the computer chair surfing youtube and the other one is standing over her shoulder. I tell the one who is grounded that she is grounded for another week and I tell the other one to shut off the computer.

So here is their story- "A" who is grounded went in to use my bathroom and "B" who is not grounded went in to use my computer. They both claim that it was B who was on the computer and that A just happened by. A was very upset and kept pleading her case last night. I told her I would think it over and let her know tonight.

I know that I'm definetely leaving her grounded for tonight, but should I maintain the punishment for the whole week? She may have been innocent to start, but she was definetly watching and singing along with her sister. What do you think?

FYI: if she were to look over my shoulder I would also shoo her away. The girls like to watch each other online almost as much as being the one in the driver seat.

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answers from Houston on

I would lift the punishment and make it clear to both of them the next time someone is grounded she can't even look at the computer over someone's shoulder.

6 moms found this helpful

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answers from Albuquerque on

Seeing her sister on the computer doing something fun while she's walking by is a lot of temptation for a teenager (I'm assuming they're teens since you let them surf Youtube). You might want to cut her a little slack... it's the last night of grounding, and she didn't turn on the computer... she just got sucked in while her sister was playing.

7 moms found this helpful


answers from Houston on

Sometimes, grace and mercy are called for when dealing with our children.
This is a one of those "gray" moments when we really can't be sure what was going on. If I chose to hand one of my kids a little grace it was with the understanding that (in this case not finishing homework etc. before getting on the computer) the grounding would be doubled if it happened again. This deters them from taking advantage of you cutting them slack. sure to follow through with the double grounding if it happens again.

4 moms found this helpful


answers from Dover on

This is a tough one. I don't think she technically broke the rule of using the computer herself, though I understand she was looking over her sisters shoulder. To me, she wasn't grounded from singing & dancing, just going online, right?

Actually, you didn't really specify what the grounding was, only why you grounded her. If it was just that she wasn't allowed to use the computer, then I think she should be ok, if it was more of a solitary confinement type thing, then yeah, I guess she did break the rules.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Pittsfield on

I'd let it go. It was her last night, and she wasn't technically using the computer. I think you should cut her some slack :)

3 moms found this helpful


answers from San Diego on

I had an ex that had a son that loved to play the playstation. He would wake up extra early to play games. I mean this kid would eat sleep and live for the games. One day he did something and I grounded him. I asked him what he thought his punishent should be and he said a month of grounding from the playstation. I agreed. This boy was only 10 at the time and we had an understanding and respect for each other. He would watch his dad and brother play and I had no prblem with that, to me that made his punishment worse because I knew that he wanted to play so badly. His dad, (never went through with the marriage) said that after 2 weeks it was okay and that I was being too harsh. His son replied that it was his punishment and he was sticking to it. And he did too. I was so proud of him. Here is the point, he chose the punishment and followed through. If your daughter was not on the computer then she followed through. It probably killed her that she couldn't jump on. Now if your other daughter was on the computer and she was using her to look at stuff that she wanted then yes, I would ground her for another week and possibly the other daughter for being an accomplice. If you talk to them straight and listen to their arguments and know their personality then you know what you have to do.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Boston on

If you caught her on the computer how could she say it was her sister? If A was just dancing and singing along with B but not using the computer I would let it go.

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answers from Austin on

She was not "using the computer". And do not assume. Only if you see it with your eyes can you accuse. You could question. "Were YOU using the computer."

Her sister was using the computer. She just participated in an activity.

If you had been on the computer and you were singing and the grounded daughter joined in by looking over YOUR shoulder and reading the words to join you, would you have shooed her off? That will help you with your answer.

Also groundings are fine, but have you actually asked her?
This will be a progression over some days.

"What are you going to start doing to get your homework done in a more timely manner."

"What is it you need to get your home work completed?"

"Tell me exactly what you are going to be doing to get your chores and homework done"

She will be made to think, what can get her moving/ Does she need a list she has made up placed in her room, her bathroom and on the fridge.
She needs come up with her own solution or else she will never take ownership of it.

Also natural consequences. Didn't finish your homework.. Oh well bad grade.
No lunch, oh well no lunch get in the car. Gotta go, not my problem.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from San Diego on

It sounds like she used her sister to get away with something she was not supossed to be doing, BUT if she usually isn't one to lie to you, then nlet it go, something may have caught her eye and that was the moment you walked in, you know your daughter better than any one out her. J.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Chicago on

I have grounded my kids from the computer for not doing all homwork and chores first. I have also taken away my one girl's mp3 player. But it is kind of hard to not listen to the music when someone else is playing. My computer is in the frontroom so everyone sees it. So if the one that is grounded hears the music if the other is on youtube (son could not care less about you tube) I don;t punish her or make her leave the room. I think you should let it go if you do believe A was just listening and not actually on. Of course, if she was telling B what to get to...then I would rethink it and maybe add a week.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from St. Louis on

Homework not finished then still grounded. Homework is more important than the computer.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Seattle on

In our house... that would equal an extension for 'sneaking'. We came about that lesson the hard way, because the first time I said "fine", and thereafter....

"But it wasn't ME it was dad!"

Nope. YOU were the one grounded and you chose to try and sneak by hanging out behind him.

In other people's houses it doesn't matter if they watch behind someone in our house it does. I'd say go with whatever feels right for YOU. If you allow watching, don't extend, if you don't allow the banned to watch, do.



answers from Denver on

violation is violation.
i would stick by your guns, or better yet-
explain her situation to her in black and white terms.
explain her violations and what they mean in terms of respect
and self-control.
let her pick the duration and intensity of her punishment.

best wishes.


answers from Detroit on

Let it go. She has been grounded for the week and she is begging for mercy. I am sure there will be bigger battles to fight inthe future. Let her know you thought about it all day and you are going to TRUST what she is telling you. I think that TRUST could go a long way. grounding her another full week just says you are in charge and NEVER make a mistake. I don't think that's right.


answers from St. Louis on

I would stick to your guns on this one, only because you lose so much ground removing groundings after they are made. If I were you I would consider changing the length of time you ground. The perfect length is long enough to hurt (so they remember next time) but short enough that they don't start thinking it is unfair and doing what your daughters did.

After all the goal is not to be watching over groundings all the time but have kids that obey your rules, ya know?

If you want to let her off the second grounding what you could do is sit down with them and ask them what they think a fair time is. The nice thing about this is that you are taking their input into account and in effect making them own the time. When they own it they are less likely to try to sneak around.

Starting to get the feeling my kids hate me in this area...I digress

So say you arrive at three days unless two of the three days fall on a weekend then two days since a weekend day is a premium. You then give her time served on the first grounding to put towards the second grounding so she does tonight and is free.

The other thing is you make them start internalizing cause and effect and make them think. Kids hate when you make them think, ask mine. :)

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