dealing with stealing in home

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by compassion, Jan 12, 2009.

  1. compassion

    compassion Member

    My dirver license is gone, my daytimer is gone, my cell phone is gone. Today will spend hours replacing driver license and cell phone. I wil ltake difficult child with me. She is denying taking them but I knwo she is. I am trying not to react. Thanks. Compassion
  2. smallworld

    smallworld Moderator

    Compassion, I know this is hard pill to swallow, but it sounds to me as if you have to lock up all valuables in your own home. Remember when our kids were babies and we had to "childproof" our houses so they wouldn't get hurt and we didn't need to spend all day keeping them safe? This is the same concept -- you need to simplify the enviornment so you don't need to spend all day keeping your possessions safe.
  3. lillians

    lillians lillians

    it is hard,, horrid and hard,, i to deal with this,,, compulsive stealing and lying,, we are hiding and locking and not telling any family business,,, chin up,, there are many of us out here
  4. Critter Lover

    Critter Lover New Member

    I agree with smallworld. You might even have to lock certain rooms in your house and not with just the normal door with a key on the knob or dead bolts. After my difficult child moved out with a state support staff....I am still finding some of my things missing like DVDs that were mine that he took and sold back to FYE just to get more money. GRRRR.....they have no respect for your property and only what they want. It certainly is nice to not be a prisoner in my own house anymore.;)
  5. crazymama30

    crazymama30 Active Member

    Hugs. It is hard to have your own child steal from you. I hope that you don't have to waste too much time replacing them.
  6. LittleDudesMom

    LittleDudesMom Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I agree with small - getting a small safe or such sounds as if it's needed. I can understand perhaps stealing the cell phone to sell (can you drug test her at home to see if she sold it for cash to use?), but why the daytimer? Perhaps there is a market for driver's licenses as well, but I don't understand your daytimer.


  7. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    Hugs. been there done that.

    I stored a lot of stuff in the trunk of my car. The release button was in the glove box, so I locked the glove box and kept the keys on me.
  8. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Oh dear, I'm so sorry.
    I am lucky that my difficult child only likes electronics and food. He used to steal cash but he's outgrown that. Mostly because he realized that once he got in the store, we could still control what he bought. :)
    I keep wheat and other "bad" food in my locked office.
    I move the PS2 and computer mouse to a different hiding place every day.
    Best of luck. Again, I am so sorry.
  9. house of cards

    house of cards New Member

    I just wanted to add that I love the idea of taking difficult child with you so she can wait in those long boring lines as well as you, great idea.
  10. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    Locks don't work in our hosue- stuff either ggeets locked in the trunk of the car, I keep in on my own body and sleep with it, it sometimes gets hidden for short periods, or it gets tossed in trash and taken away. I don't know what it is about some difficult child- it appears to be a lot with BiPolar (BP) kids- maybe it relates to their compulsions or something. I'd try sitting down on going on strike first, before replacing it all, maybe she'll come up with at least part of it and give it back.
  11. DaisyFace

    DaisyFace Love me...Love me not

    Good morning, Compassion--

    I am so sorry to hear about your trouble.

    Add me to the list of parents that have to keep valuables locked away....
    Sometimes, it's the only solution--If you can't trust them, you can't trust them.


  12. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    We've had issues with this as well with difficult child 1. Stealing money from siblings, parents, taking other belongings without permssion (video games, cell phones, food items).

    Despite taking him to see a therapist, I still don't have answers. It's not a chronic daily thing, but more than once is too many times in my opinion.

    Just wanted you to know you're not alone in this boat!
  13. mstang67chic

    mstang67chic Going Green much as it hoovers, it's time to start locking things up. I would advise skipping the key locking doorknob and go straight for a deadbolt. We learned the hard way after difficult child broke into our room twice after we used the key locking doorknob. Any and all valuables go behind locked doors (and sometimes in the safe) and the door stays locked at ALL TIMES when you are either not in it or sleeping. (difficult child has been known to come in and rifle through things when I'm sleeping. Makes me very gratefull he's not violent since I was completely unaware)

    We also have our windows locked and I cut wood pieces to fit the windows so they can't be opened more when I have the windows to our room open in nice weather. (This was learned after he removed the window AC unit and went in that way)

    Any and all valuables, wallets, purses and in our case, food items as well as some decoration type things that my difficult child would take apart, are locked in our room. Really anything that is of interest to your particular brand of difficult all gets locked up. I even have to keep all of my bathroom things (shampoo, makeup, etc.) in my room because difficult child will either use it ALL or "make" things out of them.

    I hate the fact that I have to live behind locked doors IN my own home but if I want to keep my valuables, it's the way it has to be at this point.

    I'm sorry you're at this point but I understand. You may also want to keep an eye on your difficult child while at other's houses. Mine would steal things from our friends....sometimes small things, sometimes not. If he was out of sight for too long without me knowing where he was, I did a discreet pat down.
  14. compassion

    compassion Member

    Thanks for all the support!! Beleive it or not, we have two safes but stuff is sitll going missing.I am considering padlock on our bedroom door. I found my daytimer, by the way. She slept while I went into the DMV. I went all the way out to our accountant's but it turne dout I did not need toprove my soical security number. I replaced the cell phone that has been missing since 12-29.The car thing doeis not wokr 'casue she has keys. I have Lo-Jack on my car and we have steering weheel locks on the other cars.
    I got her drug tested today. They will send results to p-doctor.
    By my count, she is 56 days not running away and I hope clean and sober of substances but the violent behavior this weekend (7hour fit over 2 days) is cetaintly not sober behaior :(.
    T-doctor is working with her on self regulating.
    We are goign to NAMI tonight for support group. It will be our first face to face. I am lookin gforward to it.
    Someitmes she will take stuff that is valuable to me (like my Bible or mediation books) to use as blackmail.
    She is refusing to go to AA. :(. She is sleeping now. She is like in a mainc stat3e and then cycles down and crashes. She is going to 2 hour volleyball practice tonight.
    I had her read as she refused to do academics with me. She will do French and Math with dad before volleyball.
  15. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    Honestly, I think you need to involve psychiatrist and medication changes more. I know it might take a few years to get them really good, but even I am fussing at psychiatrist when it goes 2 mos or more without stability. medication changes or increases or something is due from psychiatrist.
  16. Big Bad Kitty

    Big Bad Kitty lolcat

    Might I suggest, no volleyball unless she hits a meeting? Just a thought.
  17. bran155

    bran155 Guest

    I have to run out and get my husband from work, I just wanted to send you some (((HUGS))). :)
  18. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    So sorry she's backsliding and she won't go to AA.
    At least while she's sleeping you get a break.
  19. cadydid

    cadydid New Member

    I'm sorry to hear of the trouble that you are having.. I agree though with sleep comes a break.

    We had a key lock, and now have a bolt lock on our door.. but not because of the son.. because of 18yr old not so daughter. She would take her school id and slip the lock on our bedroom door to get whatever it was that she wanted.

    We also have a safe that takes a key and a combination to open. Only husband has the key since my keys have decided to play games with me and move from where I leave them LOL.
  20. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    Compassion, some thoughts here. We did have the stealing for a while - difficult child 1, and then a girl who lived nearby who would break in especially in bad weather because her mother kept her locked out of the house until there was someone else home.

    The bits of timber cut to fit the window track of sliding doors/windows - very effective, it stopped the neighbour girl. The one window we didn't have it on, was one that no adult could have got through plus we live in a town where people tend to not lock doors, so we were more vigilant than most. After she got through our tiny window, even that earned a bit of timber, plus a window lock in use.

    We never had to lock our bedroom from difficult child 1, becauze once we discovered what was going on we gave him such a scare that he never did it again. He was really upset at how long it took to earn back our trust, though. Tough. Consequences.

    But I think we were so successful with difficult child 1 because he's Aspie, not BiPolar (BP) and finally the message got through, he just "got it". I can't tell you how it worked, I wish I could.

    When it comes to putting padlocks on things, you need to be aware that they can be defeated. If you have bolted the padlock on, for example, and there are bolts showing (I can't describe them using the s word, the site censor bleeps it) then be aware that judicious use of a screwdriver can undo the fastening, remove the whole assembly, rifle through what's behind the padlock then they use the screwdriver again to put the assembly back so you won't know it's been gone.

    Any locking system that is inconvenient for you, leads to you taking more and more shortcuts which the thief can exploit. If it's a hassle to keep getting the keys out to unlock the padlock just to get a packet of biscuits or the flour from the cupboard, you will tend to leave the padlock off while you're cooking, at least. Then you might delay putting the padlock back on until you're sure you've finished cooking, for example. Or you might intend to make a cuppa, so you leave it for a little longer. And so on.

    An alternative when stuff goes missing - don't replace it. For example, driver's licence gone missing, then the consequences are, you can't drive her anywhere. Make-up goes missing or gets trashed - stop wearing make-up. Shampoo or conditioner gets trashed - then nobody in the house gets to use any shampoo or conditioner. It can be done - you rinse your hair in warm water every night and after about 6 weeks of misery, your hair stabilises and you find you never need to use shampoo again (that is the theory - look up "Richard Glover" and "shampoo" on Google for an amusing discussion on this; husband is trying this, he finds he only ever shampoos with a tiny amount, every few weeks).

    Your Bible goes missing - then next time you get your hands on it, memorise it (or huge chunks of it). I got heavily criticised by an idiot 'friend' of mine for not reading the Bible every day - I already have vast tracts of it memorised, from childhood. Mind you, my memory is all King James version! (I can't be having with these new-fangled translations...). There is also a lot of Bible options and meditation/study guides available online. You CAN do without your Bible if you need to, she should't be able to hold it to ransom. When it all boils down, it is JUST a book, a very widely published book, and she can't corner the market on every copy ever published! Just go to a neighbour and read their copy at their home for a while. And the more trouble you have to go to to getyour hands on it, the more you will find the passages sticking in your memory. So it will all come back to bite her.

    We just watched the Aussie version of Pioneer House. Personally, I felt they had far too many technological aids, too many home comforts. They had FLOORS, for pete's sake! And staff... it's amazing what you can accomplish with that much. But you can always challenge her that you will ALL do without the advantages of whatever it is she keeps stealing. If you have to, clean out your home of all likely things she will try to steal, put it all into storage. Take away her car keys, permanently. They are a privilege. Take away her house key likewise. Search her room regularly - after all, she's been going through your stuff. She is still a minor, you have the right.

    difficult child 3 has a key that allows him to get into the car, but it will not start the car. He also has a house key and a garage key. These are handy for all of us - I can send him out to the garage to get stuff, or if we're out shopping I can send him back to the car with the trolley of groceries, and know the car will be properly packed for my. He's a good kid. When we drive out, difficult child 3 waits outside the car to lock the garage after us, with his own key. When we get home, he always loved being first out of the car so we use this to send him to unlockc the garage, then go unlock the house.

    We do this because we can trust him. At the first sign that he is stealing from us (and I don't think this will happen, but that's a different issue) then those three keys get confiscated.

    Whenever we've had a kid on a special diet, we've often removed ALL "bad" foods form the house. For example, difficult child 3 is allergic to ony kind of food colour, I'm allergic to another. Nobody else has any problems with allergies. But if ANY of us buy lollies, for example, even if we only buy them for personal consumption, we make sure that what we buy doesn't have the "bad" colours in it.
    I'm still on my strict diet. OK, I can't have difficult child 3 or husband cutting back on calories, but I can't eat white rice any more. They can. But when I only have brown rice cooked, then it's generally easier for the fellas to eat brown rice rather than cook white just for them. They like the brown rice anyway, so that's what we ALL eat.

    And in the past, when any kids of ours got stuck into food to excess or abused a privilege or treat (such as by scoffing every calorie within minutes of getting home from school) that that is where the treat ends, for everyone.

    We can't eat sweets that aren't there. We can't eat crisps that aren't there. If the fridge only has fresh vegetables and fruit, and there are no wraps or fruit leathers or biscuits or cake, then guess what? All they can eat is healthy food.

    The biggest thing - yes, this can be a nuisance. But cutting out a lot of this sort of stuff, even if only for a while, means you don't have to worry if your kid has found your stash of chocolate and scoffed the lot. Minimal lifestyle can be a shock but it can also be very freeing.