I am sick to death of parents coming up with dumb, unique, over-the-top ways to punish their kids. It’s like you can’t just ground a kid anymore, you have to get a flash mob to perform the Macarena at their school to embarrass them. Now one South Carolina couple is facing child neglect charges, because they decided to force their daughter to live in a tent in the woods for a week because she ate a Pop Tart without permission.
According to NBC, James and Crystal Driggers decided to punish their 14-year-old daughter for eating a Pop Tart by making her set up a tent in a wooded area a quarter mile from their house. She was given only a roll of toilet paper, a flashlight, a whistle, and a watch, and told she’d have to meet someone at a fence on the family’s property at designated times if she wanted to be given food. Once that “food” was an open can of Spaghetti-Os and a plastic spoon.
The girl was expected to live in the tent for a week, even though the area was hit with severe thunderstorms while she was out there. She’d been there two days when her grandmother called the police.
The Driggers were arrested this week, and the girl is currently with the South Carolina Department of Social Services. Her four siblings have reportedly been sent to live with grandparents for the time being.
I hope the judge throws the book at these parents, because this does not seem like an isolated incident. We all lose our tempers sometimes, but I am highly suspicious that a set of normal, well-adjusted parents without serious control issues would go from 0 to “you have to live in a tent” over a Pop Tart.
Was the Pop Tart really that big of a deal? Or did these control-freak jerks just come up with the idea of the tent punishment and get so excited about their cool new idea that they decided to deploy it the very next moment their daughter did something they didn’t like?
The world may never know, but either way this is a real parenting failure.
(Photo by Ian Gavan / Getty Images)