Opinions wanted - 12 yr old commuting alone w/ headphones on

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Hawthorne4
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Opinions wanted - 12 yr old commuting alone w/ headphones on

Postby Hawthorne4 » Fri Aug 30, 2019 1:37 pm

I'm looking to gauge whether or not I'm being over-protective or too late in trying to sort this (ie the ship has sailed and I'm out of order doing anything now!) 

My son is about to turn 13 and travels 45 minutes to school (overground & tube.) He's done so for a year now but has been shepherded by his father.  He is now starting to travel alone, which I think is great- I'm glad for this step towards independence HOWEVER...  he is insisting on wearing these headphones his father purchased him from the moment he steps out the door to the minute he gets into school.  He's wearing them on the street as he walks, on the train and the tube.  I think this is incredibly unsafe and foolish.  I've spoken up but my son insists he can hear everything.  His dad thinks I'm overreacting. 

My gut instincts are telling me to put my foot down despite his displeasure as his safety is my responsibility and he's obviously too young to be making good decisions which may compromise his happiness.  

So- should I die on this mountain and take the headphones away or just continue to say the rosary the moment he walks out the door?! :shock:


 
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windmill26
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Re: Opinions wanted - 12 yr old commuting alone w/ headphones on

Postby windmill26 » Fri Aug 30, 2019 4:01 pm

My son walks 45 min. to get to school.He is 13 ,I walk half way with him.No headphones and the phone is used only to call us to let us know that he has arrived/ is leaving school.To answer your question; take the headphones away.He may hear with them on (not fully) but it is a distraction nonetheless.
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the parsley song
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Re: Opinions wanted - 12 yr old commuting alone w/ headphones on

Postby the parsley song » Fri Aug 30, 2019 7:03 pm

It's not over-protective. He needs to be aware of his surroundings when on the busy commute through London and he isn't when he's shut his hearing off. My son is a similar age and he's not allowed headphones on the school journey or to brandish his phone around (mugging risk). I know how you feel though. I feel I spend half my life at the moment telling my son what he can't do and having the most excruciating arguments about things like this. Don't let him make you feel guilty, you are just doing your job as a Mum to teach him common sense!
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juliantenniscoach
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Re: Opinions wanted - 12 yr old commuting alone w/ headphones on

Postby juliantenniscoach » Sat Aug 31, 2019 2:40 pm

A lot depends on the headphones and his appearance. If they are expensive like Beats or Air Pods then he's a target waiting to happen.  If they are run of the mill then they're as attractive.  Same goes for his appearance, if he looks like he might have money, trendy trainers etc etc.

I think the same for the current trend where everyone it seems is wearing headphones and isolated from their surroundings.  In the wrong circumstances they are an easy target for a thief.  Just my take on it.
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jtreliving
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Re: Opinions wanted - 12 yr old commuting alone w/ headphones on

Postby jtreliving » Sat Aug 31, 2019 5:01 pm

Here’s my tuppence worth. Too many people use the headphones to completely tune out of their surroundings, often to extremely dangerous degrees.

On at least two occasions when turning off the main road in my residential area, I have had young pedestrians stride right out into the road in front of me without looking for traffic either side, earphones in. Both times I beeped on the horn to warn them. Both times, not the slightest hint of a reaction. The only way they would’ve known I was there would have been if they were rolling off my bonnet.

Of course I’m not saying your son is that oblivious! But he does need to be fully aware of just how dangerous it can be out there, and he does need his wits about him. If he wants to wear the headphones on the train or the bus, that’s a very different thing, but not when he’s likely to be pedestrianising. It all depends on how responsible he is I suppose, so I understand your dilemma.
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Hawthorne4
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Re: Opinions wanted - 12 yr old commuting alone w/ headphones on

Postby Hawthorne4 » Sun Sep 01, 2019 4:01 pm

All good input- thank you for taking the time to respond.  

He wears the run of the mill kind of headphones and doesn't wear expensive things but between the headphones and the amount of hair he's letting drape over his eyes it's like he's reenacting a scene from Bird Box every time he steps out the door!  

I think I'll ask him to wear them only while on the train.  Maybe he'll be so grateful that I backed off taking them away entirely he'll find this a reasonable request. 

Only how many more years until he's his own responsibility?  Oh the grey hairs...
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Red5
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Re: Opinions wanted - 12 yr old commuting alone w/ headphones on

Postby Red5 » Sun Sep 01, 2019 4:58 pm

I wouldn't worry about it too much, my daughter travels everyday to school on tube and train with headphones in, never had any issues. She's travelling at very busy times when almost every one else is doing the same thing, the more I say don't do it as soon as she's out of my sight she'll probably stick them in.
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Carol2R
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Re: Opinions wanted - 12 yr old commuting alone w/ headphones on

Postby Carol2R » Mon Sep 09, 2019 7:56 am

Whether you can actually get him to take off the headphones is another story, but....  I saw a young woman nearly hit by a police car last week as she was crossing Battersea Rise from Northcote Road to St. John's Road.  This police car had its siren blaring and was blasting its horn as it raced along Battersea Rise, but with her headphones on, she was completely oblivious and the police car had to work hard to avoid her.  
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