He Won’t Allow His Children to Use Their Phones During the Day and Now They’ve Stopped Coming Around

A father recently started to doubt his strictness when his two older children from a previous relationship stopped coming to his house because of his rigid rules. Here’s what the 36-year-old dad had to say:

He Had Four Children

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The man had been with his current wife for eight years, and they had five-year-old twin boys together. He also had two older children from a previous relationship: a 13-year-old boy and a 10-year-old girl.

They Had Strict Rules

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The family had always followed set rules, such as staggered bedtimes, no dessert if the children did not eat enough of their dinner, and limited phone usage during the day.

The rules apply to all children, regardless of age. With four children in a busy household, having rules helped control things and also ensured they spent time together as a family.

He Valued Family Time

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The father explained, “During the day, we try and do family activities such as bowling, the cinema, or bike rides. If we stay home, it’s board games and family interaction.”

But then the older children started to say that they didn’t like some of the rules in the house.

The Older Children Complained

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The older two children were especially annoyed by the rule of no phones after lunch until after dinner. 

During these hours, they were only allowed to read and reply to messages and calls but were forbidden from scrolling on social media. They could go on their phones in the morning and after dinner if the family was home.

Their Mom Had Different Rules

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At their mother’s house, where they lived for the majority of the time, they had more freedom, including unlimited phone usage.

The father added, “With my ex, they are allowed to cut their own routine, and that’s fine there as it isn’t my house and whatever works for them. It’s not my business what they do there.”

It Was Just One Day a Week

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The younger twin boys did not have phones because of their age, so the no-phone hours didn’t yet apply to them.

“It’s mainly one day a week, too; the other day of the weekend, they are with their friends and have their phones with them and can do as they please with their phones,” the dad said.

They Stopped Visiting

Never Apologizing
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Despite this, the older children have started refusing to come to his house and haven’t visited for the past three months.

The man’s former partner asked him to find a middle ground on the rule, but he said no. He thought that the rule wasn’t very strict or outdated compared to others. It was only 5-6 hours without their phones.

He Didn’t Want To Set a Precedent

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The man was worried that if he gave in, it would create a chain reaction. He didn’t want the twins to think that they could always get what they wanted just by showing enough dislike.

He mentioned that the door would always be open for his older children, but he would not force them to come to his house.

His Wife Agreed

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The man valued the importance of maintaining a united front with his wife. “My wife agrees with our rules, which are for all children, and backs me 100%, but I find myself questioning if I’m doing the right thing or not,” he shared.

Should He Relax The Rules?

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But he still felt unsure about whether he had made the right choice. He also recognized that his older children’s refusal to visit had a significant impact on him and made him feel burdened, as he said, “I don’t think it is too harsh, but I am also feeling guilty that they don’t want to come over anymore.

As such, he asked for help online in deciding what to do for the best.

The Internet Responded

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One person advised, “I think you’re being too rigid here. It seems you are just being stubborn and don’t want to “give in” to your children and admit you were wrong. Consider if it’s worth it. Ultimately, you are the one who is missing out due to this rule.”

Another poster agreed, “They’re scrolling on their phones at his ex’s house anyway and on his time. I guess pride is more important than spending time with your kids!”

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