Family | Parenting

Advice Needed: Mom Took My 10-Year-Old Daughter’s Phone at Sleepover. And I Don’t Like Their House Rule

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It's strange how technology manages to create new areas of social confusion and awkwardness — especially when it comes to kids and cell phones.

Dick Thomas Johnson/Flickr

As user upsideup wrote on Mumsnet, she recently ran into a problem regarding cell phones at sleepovers for her 10-year-old daughter. As she explained, her daughter's friend has slept at their house several times, and the friend's mom asked that they take the friend's phone away before bed time.

Though she complied — leaving the phone just outside the bedroom in case the friend needed it — upsideup also mentioned that she prefers her own daughter keep her phone during a sleepover. But that's not what happened when upsideup's daughter visited her friend's house:

The mum took [my daughter's] ]phone off her at eight last night and put it in her bedroom. [My daughter] did ask if she could keep it turned off in her bag, but she wasn't allowed. She's quite anxious about sleepovers and knowing she can text us to come pick her up, etc. without talking to the parents makes her more comfortable. She also does contact us a bit anyway to say goodnight and check when we are picking her up, etc. She also didn't get her phone back until we picked her up at 11 because she was too nervous to ask for it.

Upsideup mentions that they had been worried not to get a response to their goodnight text, but had assumed their daughter was just having fun. She wrote:

[My daughter] was upset when we picked her up, obviously not to tears or anything, but it did make her feel uncomfortable that someone else took her phone and she wasn't able to contact us. She wasn't able to get any sleep because she was worried about it.

Upsideup wants to know whether it's unreasonable to think that the other parents should have talked to her before taking the phone. She wrote:

The girls are quickly becoming close friends, so its likely [my daughter] will get more sleepover invites. [...] How can I tell the mum that I would like [my daughter] to keep her phone?

Dear upsideup,

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