Wednesday, April 11, 2007

What would you do?

Elliot keeps his money in a gallon-size Ziploc bag pushpinned onto his wall. He has just begun very diligently saving up for a zoo simulation game on the computer that he is so excited about. This morning I think he had a grand total of $3.25, but tonight he discovered that the dollars were missing out of the bag. He was (kind of a mix between) panicked, surprised, mad and alarmed!

I'm fairly certain that neither Aaron nor Isaac took the money, which leaves me with the three friends (from two different families) who spent several hours in our house today as likely culprits.

Steve says it's not worth mentioning. He'll give Elliot three replacement dollars, and that's that.

Me? I am all about honesty and accountability and it gets my blood boiling just a little that someone maybe stole something from one of my kids. I have no problem if it was the 3- or 4-year-old who was over. I care a little more if it was the 10-year-old.

Should I bring it up, at all, or is it so just not an issue?

16 comments:

Alice said...

Rrrrrrrrggggghhh. That makes me mad. It reminds me of the time Collin sold homemade cinnamon rolls (delicious they were) at our garage sale, and a man STOLE from him. Collin watched him do it, but was too shocked and embarassed to say anything, and the jerk knew it. What kind of creep steals from a little boy?

Neil and Diana said...

That's a tough question. I tend to side with Steve, because you aren't positive that one of the visitors took the money, let alone which one. On the other hand, if it was one of the visitors, who knows what his sticky fingers will come upon next time he comes over to "play." Maybe the 10-year-old and 4-year-old are in cahoots. Maybe you could go to each house with Elliot and have Elliot question his friend. That way, you could observe with your liedar on, and you wouldn't be directly accusing anyone.

Abby said...

Give 'em heck. (But I'm so non-confrontational that I wouldn't be able to do it.) The boy needs to learn now that that's a no-no.

sarah said...

Emily, next time the friends come over, let them know that the money is missing and you would like them to tell you what happened to it. You will likely be able to see if one of them is guilty. Then you could further your lecture and tell them how disappointed you are. Then you could politely talk to the parents about Elliot's cause and how sad he was to lose the money. Yes, I'm sure it will all go just like that.

Alice, I remember that. People are so mean sometimes. That was a good yard sale, aside from the thief. Why do I still feel like I stock another sale without any effort? (And that's several D.I. trips later).

Nancy said...

I'd just say something to the kids the next time they were over, but would be very cautious about accusing anyone, you don't want any parents mad at you.

Courtney said...

I would leave it be. Most likely you'd just end up upsetting the parents and everything would be uncomfortable. You can still use this as a teaching moment with your own kids.

amye said...

I'd add the keep-it-hidden factor, too. As much as Elliot likes the money in the plastic bag, it's an invitation for theft from certain visitors. We have stuff stolen from school regularly. Every year I buy several new piano books for supplemental playing, and at year's end, most are gone. I hope they their new piano books with my name in black marker on the front cover.

amye said...

that's "enjoy" their

Emily said...

Here's my update. I saw all the kids today. To the young ones, I asked if they had seen some of Elliot's dollars when they were in the kids' room yesterday, because we lost them and Isaac won't give me a straight answer. They said no, and their mom said, "If they took it, they would have said, 'Yeah, I put it in my pocket.'" I agreed. That's what my kids would have said. It was all very casual and non-accusatory and their mom was not at all offended.

To the 10-yr-old, I asked her the same question, and she said no, and I'm not sure I believe her, but I let it go. If she did take it, now she knows we notice stuff like missing dollars. I'm letting it go.

Jami said...

My experience with "stolen" items has been interesting. Once I was sure someone "took" my jewelery, only to find out I had misplaced it. Thankfully I did not confront that person. I actually never think about accusing anyone of stealing it just feels uncomfortable and I'm not willing to go there. I think the important lesson here is that Elliot is saving up for a game. My kids would just beg me until I gave in. You're a good mom.

sarah said...

OK, now I feel bad for suggesting you interrogate the children. Sounds like you handled it well.

metamorphose said...

I think you did the right thing -bringing it up, just so whoever did it is aware that you know it disappeared when they were visiting.

I had a friend in kindergarten who gave me a Lipsmacker's chapstick set for my birthday. The next day she stole it from me. When I asked to have it back, she said she had buried it. Funny how I still remember that.

I hope it wasn't the 10 year old. That's a little too old to be stealing from a four year old. Just sayin', it's one thing if they're still learning about right and wrong, but by 10 they should know better. Little snitch, whoever it was.

wendy said...

I see I am late in responding, and that the matter has been resolved. However, I still wanted to comment.

If I were one of the mother's of the suspected culprits, I would want to know! I appreciate when people tell me what my kids have done or are suspected of doing. It helps me to know what I need to help them with. If my child took something that didn't belong to them, I would ask them to return it and apologize. Then we would do some talking about stealing, and maybe some punishment, too (depending on the situation). I would not have been offended if you had approached me. And I don't see why a mother would be. It's just an inquiry anyway...

Glad you were able to address the problem.

Will you replace the $3?

By the way, we enjoyed having you guys over, too. Ryland was talking about Elliot the other day. They really seemed to hit it off. If you are ever in town, come by again.

Noma said...

This is my first experience making a comment in a blog. I enjoyed all the comments and see that things are pretty settled. My feelings run along the same lines as Wendy. If you bring the subject up with the parents you are giving them a teaching opportunity that they may have missed otherwise. A lesson could be used in FHE, or a heart to heart with a child can be a great moment, before they grow up too much. Good job being a great Mom.

Emily said...

Noma! I am so excited that you commented! You are welcome anytime.

pflower10 said...

I have a question...What do you do if you suspect your Roto-Rooter man stole your digital camera????