woman eavesdropping

Dear Rene:

The other day I was eavesdropping on my sister’s phone call.

 I know my mom wants me to find out if my sister is doing anything bad so I was listening. (She is 16.)

I overheard her say she was drinking with her friend (when they were together). I am not sure if I should tell my mom about this or should I talk to my sister or what?

She already knows I heard the conversation cause she caught me but I still don’t know what to do!

Help me!


Knows too much!

Dear Knows:

I’m glad you wrote in, now I want you to listen. I have a couple of problems with this situation and you and your both mother bear some responsibility.

DON’T EAVESDROP:  I know you’re young but let me tell you this and please keep this with you throughout your life; eavesdropping is wrong. I don’t care if it’s your sister and you’re looking for something to hold over her or the kid at school you’re trying to catch in a lie. It’s sneaky behavior and not a behavior among those with fine moral fiber. In everything you do, you should remember The Golden Rule. Do you know what that is? Treat others the way you want to be treated. How would you feel if you were having a private conversation and your sister was eavesdropping on you? I’ll bet you’d be mad as a hornet. It’s bad behavior and promise you won’t do it again, okay?

YOUR MOM: Honestly, I’m a little surprised and upset that she put you in this position. Your job is that of sister, not mother; it’s her responsibility to find out whether your sister is doing anything bad. Furthermore, I’ll bet she already suspects a few things, otherwise she wouldn’t be asking for you to help in her espionage mission. But the bottom line is that is not your job; you are not the parent! And perhaps more disconcerting is that your mom is potentially poisoning the relationship between you and your sister by putting you up to this. I don’t know how strongly you feel about this or if you can stand up to you mom, but if you can, I would tell her you’re not going to spy for her.

YOUR SISTER: You need to apologize to your sister. Now if your relationship was anything like mine with my little sister was, she’ll probably want nothing to do with you. Maybe you can send her a text or leave her a note if she won’t talk. Basically you need to fall on your own sword, admit you were wrong and tell her it won’t happen again. But you also need to tell her you know she was drinking and that’s not only not cool, it’s illegal.

You asked if you should tell your mom and this is really tough. Yes, your mother needs to know that your sister has been drinking and she’s going to need to put a stop to that. But does she have to hear it from you? Ideally your sister would tell her, but I don’t know in what alternate universe that would happen. So I guess that means it’s going to have to come from you. You need to be prepared for your sister to be really angry with you and stay that way for a while. Hopefully, in the end, she will understand you did it because you cared for her.

Good luck, hon and no more eavesdropping, KK?

Do you have a question for a mom but don’t want to ask YOUR mom? Click here and fire away.