Friday, February 10, 2012

What Kind Of Bed Do You Make With a Gun?

Last night I watched a video that has gone viral, featuring a man with a gun. The man took this video of himself, posted it himself, and what he chose to show the world was an upsetting picture of who he is.


The first half of the video is his reading of a letter that his daughter Hannah wrote, aimed at her parents, and posted on Facebook with the belief that they would not see it (although I wonder if she was really hoping they would see it, so maybe they would understand how miserable she is). The father found it by apparently using some sneaky tactics. It was a very depressing letter, in which Hannah passionately expresses her frustration with her parents and their poor treatment and high demands of her. Her father reads the letter to anyone who will listen, in hopes that it will make Hannah look bad. He picks apart her words, disputes her claims, and calls her lazy and stupid, among other names.

This happens at the 7:10 mark.
At the end of the video, he puts the icing on the (sick, twisted) cake when he shoots nine bullets into what he has referred to several times as "her" laptop. This punishment is extreme and rather scary, well outside the bounds of even commonly accepted punitive parenting. I wonder how long ago it was that he gifted her that laptop. Was he excited to give it to her then? Did he take pride in his ability to give her such a gift, and feel satisfied when she expressed gratitude in some way (a thank-you, a smile, a squeal of joy, maybe even a hug...)? Did he let her enjoy her gift for any amount of time, or did he immediately start holding it over her head, demanding appreciation for it? What part of the word "gift" does he not understand? What suddenly made it ok for him to destroy her property in such a violent manner?

He explains that Hannah will be able to get a new laptop, when she can buy one for herself. I would advise her not to do so until she is able to move out of his home, because I would bet a lot of money that he would not hesitate to brutally murder that one as well, any time he got that angry at her again.

Many comments have been written in support of what this man did. They cheer for his violent and disturbing act of publicly berating his daughter and shooting her property, because they say Hannah deserved it for writing such a nasty letter. They hail is as "parenting done right." I disagree wholeheartedly. She had obviously been given many reasons to write that letter, and her father's video only proves that her discontent is justified.

The most striking part of the video (besides the gunshots) is when he details the list of chores he has demanded of Hannah. He describes each one and smugly offers an estimate of how long each task should take. According to him, the total time he asks of her is very small: not more than a few minutes for each of a few simple tasks. If it's true that he asks so little of her, is it really worth forcing it, while causing so much damage to their relationship? If the chores are as easy as he says they should be, why not just do them himself? In fact, he could have finished almost all of them in the time it took for him to record his eight-minute tirade.

He hoped to teach his daughter a thing or two. I'm not sure exactly what he intended to teach, but the only lessons he conveyed to me were the following:
  1. He does not respect his daughter or her property.
  2. He runs his family like a business, in which he is the unquestionable boss and his child is his employee, but without even basic rights (one could be arrested for shooting an employee's personal computer).
  3. He is a vindictive and violent man who is not to be trusted.
One of Hannah's responsibilities is to make her bed (which, to me, is an inexplicable thing to require of someone). I couldn't help but think of the old saying: "You make your bed, and then you must lie in it." What kind of bed has this man made for himself, in terms of his relationship with his soon-to-be adult daughter? One that is prickly and scary and cold and not welcoming or safe or happy. One that has already led Hannah to write about how miserable she is with him.

Well sir, I hope you are satisfied with the bed you have made for yourself, because you will spend the rest of your life lying in it. Someday you will wake up in this bed and wonder what went wrong. You will wonder why your daughter doesn't want to spend time with you, doesn't trust you. On that day, I would invite you to watch the video of yourself. It explains everything.

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More on this story: So What If She Bought It With Her Own Money?

84 comments:

  1. I am really saddened that so much of America thinks this jerk is righteous. He has resorted to passive aggressive/aggressive "tit for tat" behavior that should be above a grown man. So many people forget what it's like to be a teenager...and that violent shocking things like this only push kids away. So ignorant it makes me sick. I'm glad you voiced the other view...because I am still in shock that people are laughing at this. If he were a peer that she had wronged...MAYBE it would be vindicated...but then he would be expelled or something now wouldn't he?

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  2. So many people are commending him for his "good parenting" of his "disrespectful and spoiled" teen. Honestly I can't figure out what she did that was so wrong it warranted such a violent response. She mouthed off about her parents to her friends on Facebook. Big freaking deal. What he did was akin to smacking her around because she hit someone. Ugh.

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    1. Actually she lied about her parents on Facebook. Not just mouthed off...

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    2. How do you know she was lying? She obviously didn't feel comfortable enough to talk to her parents, and hid the post from them. Maybe he's the one lying. (After watching his violent outburst, I'd tend to believe her over him)

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    3. Oh puh-leeze, what teenager hasn't exaggerated their sad story to their friends? Teenagers whine about shit. Film at 11.

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    4. Sooo Hannah's whining completely justifies her father's lifetime humiliation of her? The teenage rant deserved her father's sabotage of her future college education and employment?
      Posting something on the internet that is purposely designed to embarrass someone for 5-20 years is a fitting punishment for a complaint that was posted to a private forum?

      Sheesh. There is a saying that sense is not common, and your thoughts prove it true.

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  3. I hadn't seen the video until now. Based on your post I expected to find some vile soulless villain but he didn't come across like that at all to me. The video had me on the verge of tears and not necessarily for his daughter. He looked more sad and hurt to me then angry and vindictive. I think he is at a loss on how to get his daughter's love and respect back. I think the choices he has made are wrong and I think he may come to regret them in the near future. I truly hope they find a way back to each other because my heart is breaking for both of them.

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    1. I agree with you!
      Bottom line; if she had been raised able to trust him and exspress herself, she would not have needed to publicly embarass him like that. A teen is going to do stupid desperate things when pushed! They both need therapy imo

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    2. You have more empathy for him then he showed for his daughter in making the video. Maybe she was also sad and hurt when she posted her letter on facebook (maybe she said it was about chores but she was actually hurt by some way they had acted towards her). It surprises me how often I see people having more sympathy and understanding for an adult behaving worse than for a teenager making a more minor mistake.

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    3. I probably do but I am okay with that. I am glad that I have the ability to not only empathize with my own children but with other humans, even ones I possibly don't even know. I think it's sad when people only choose one side of a story to empathize with. More often then not both sides of a story need to be understood before healing and ultimately progress can happen.

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    4. @Melissa J
      Yes but it's a problem when the side with more power also receives more empathy, more lenience and more acceptance.

      "I think it's sad when people only choose one side of a story to empathize with."

      "The video had me on the verge of tears and not necessarily for his daughter."

      "not necessarily for his daughter" and then your outlining his emotions and reasons for the video (and not mentioning what hers for the fb post might have been or even how the video probably made her feel) clearly shows how evenly you empathize with both sides.*

      *Both sides weren't mocked and humiliated in front of millions of people by the other side (he could have taken the video down after 2000 views, 500,000...3 mill... 5mill... maybe after so many people said mean things about his daughter (on yt there were many more mean comments about his daughter than about him).

      I will admit I think there are a lot of cases where one side has claim to more of the empathy (awkward way to put it) and I find it's often the side with less power.

      She could have been scared to talk to him directly and tell him she's unhappy with something because he has the power to take something away or do something if he gets angry. He can say pretty much anything to her so there is no reason he would need to post his feelings somewhere else when he can go directly to her to talk about things. This is just one example of the difference in power in their relationship.

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  4. Truly sickening. And terrifying. And sad. So soul-hurting sad.

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  5. I think he is completely RIGHT!!! Someone needs to teach her a lesson...some responsibility...and who better than her own father...she has no respect just like most teens like her..MORE PARENTS NEED TO ACT LIKE THIS!!!! Then maybe some of the kids these days won't be so out of control!!!!!!! I hope you don't have kids and if you do maybe you should consider using some tough love like this if your children ever act this way!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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    1. People like you made me weep, seriously.

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    2. Nikki you are not suppose to parent your child with acts or rage, if you treated any other human being that way you would be arrested. We should hold our children above everyone else not step all over them. Tell me what lesson is he teaching her, he responds to her angry rant with one of his own and then ends it with gun shots. I am guessing that the lesson she has learned is the next time she is pissed off with someone she better have a gun handy. Nice message to give your child.

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    3. Its a relentless cycle actually. If you do well and do your best, not only are you completely ignored by society, and more than likely teased by your peers, If you crash and fall you'll most likely get punished by your parents for not being who you used to be. Its really hard to be neutral as a teen, cause if your neutral you face the consequences of both sides, your either a ruthless out of control teenager, or your neglected or bullied by society. Your parents either force you to be reduculously unattanably good with all odds stacked against you, or we screw the concept, disobey our parents, and do whatever we want because perfection is impossible. Most of us go with the latter since nobody wants to be bullied/ignored and thinking in numbers, impressing the 500+ students at your school is more important than impressing 2 parents and 7 teachers. And then the cycle goes on, parents complain about their teenagers, people start thinking that all teenagers bad, parents start to despately try to make their children perfect, children can't attain perfection and move to the dark side, those who do attain perfection are bullied by the dark side, more people go to the dark side and it repeats again and again and again. If not every teenager was placed in the same toxic enviroment then not many teenagers would be effected by its poison.

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    4. Sooo by humiliating her in front of millions of people she will learn a lesson? And by posting something on Facebook that could seriously jeopardize her future, she will learn a lesson?

      What lesson would that be? Please tell us what Hannah will learn as she is turned down for educational opportunities and employment?

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  6. So let me get this straight... This man works hard to provide his daughter with anything she wants. Then she uses "her" property (that he busted his hump to provide for her) to go online and complain about the JOKE of amount of chores she has to do AND badmouth and threaten her parents, on a public forum, nonetheless. And you're mad at the father?!?! People like you make me weep for future generations.

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    1. Are you serious? Do you not understand that she is crying out for help? How can you not see that she is a product of him?

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    2. This comment made me laugh out loud.

      People like you give me hope for humanity, friend. I am so very glad to have surrounded myself and my children with so many kind and loving adults. Thanks for all you do to help spread love and kindness for our kids.

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    3. If it were truly "her property", I guess she could have him arrested for destroying it, couldn't she?
      I wonder how this father would feel if his daughter brought home a violent, abusive, sarcastic, disrespectful boyfriend? That's the kind of male he's modeling for her. So sad.

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    4. I know! It's attitudes like we've seen on here that cause our kids to feel like they own the world. :P

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    5. This is a quote from Sidney Poiter in 'Guess Who's Coming to Dinner'. It is very powerful. You parents that think children owe you because you provide for them....what is wrong with you? In this quote he is an adult and his father has just made a list of all the things he and his mother had done for him and that he owed them.

      Sidney Poiter
      'You tell me what rights I've got or haven't got, and what I owe to you for what you've done for me. Let me tell you something. I owe you nothing! If you carried that bag a million miles, you did what you're supposed to do! Because you brought me into this world. And from that day you owed me everything you could ever do for me like I will owe my son if I ever have another.'

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  7. Completely agree, I watched the video this morning and was so sad to see the results of a bad father-daughter relationship, the cheerful responses he received. Great post, Thank you.

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  8. I do not think it is unreasonable for a family member to share in the chores. I do not think her list of chores was unreasonable. Nothing wrong with helping out in the house. while he took it too far her post was totally wrong. i dont think checking up on your kid makes you sneaky. he said she has done it before. maybe she is exhibiting behavior that makes him NEED to check up on her. he may have crossed the line but he is actively parenting and i dont think there is anything wrong with trying to be a parent. she was completely disrespectful. i would guess there are exaggerations on both ends. although the dad may not be father of the year, i think vindictive and violent is a judgement and one you cant make in 8 minutes about who he is. just about what he did. it is sad for her. i am sure we will hear more about this in the future...just to be clear, they were both wrong in my opinion. better ways to handle situations.

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    1. The difference is she is a teenager, and teenagers tend to be impulsive, rebellious and disrespectful. However, he is a parent and an adult who clearly was retaliating, get that? Retaliating, not parenting.

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  9. If every adult stops and thinks for just 5 minutes you would remember how your parents treated you. Did they give respect? Did they show you love? Did they let you now they trusted you? If the answer is yes you had or still have amazing parents, let them know. If no you have the choose to change how your kids think of you. Respect kids for they are the leaders of tomorrow.

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    1. Yes, exactly this. Parenting from a place of empathy instead of authority. What a revolutionary idea.

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  10. Thanks for making such a thoughtful post about this issue.. It's a no brainer that a parent doesn't sneak into a child's bedroom to read their diary and the same is true of privacy settings on facebook.. Given his reaction, I'm not at all surprised by it frankly..

    As you say, It's likely to be a very lonely bed he's made for himself in later life.. But I can't say I have much sympathy for the man.

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    1. If my kids want a fb account they have to share the log in info. They are kids. They have to be monitored. It is part of our job as parents.

      As for chores - if we let our kids stop doing them to save the relationship what does that teach them about responsibility and commitment? If we don't prepare our children for real life we are doing them a huge disservice.

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    2. Lola, thanks for bringing up the bit about preparing your children for real life by making them do chores. It's a great example of how parents and educators often paint a picture of "real life" that's nothing like real life.

      In real life, you can leave your bed as messy as you want. The sheets will still be as rumpled when you get home in the evening as they were when you left.

      In real life, you don't have to do the dishes if you don't want to. You can let them pile up in the sink until the stench is unbearable or until you have nothing to eat with.

      In the "real life" imagined by comments like yours, something terrible and surprising will happen if you don't make your bed, wash the dishes, etc. after moving out, and you'd better form a few habits early so it'll never happen to you.

      But in actual real life, actions have their natural consequences -- no more and no less. Skip washing the dishes, and you'll end up with a mountain of dirty dishes and no clean ones. Maybe you'll decide to wash them sooner next time, or maybe not.

      Your kids don't need to be "prepared" for situations like that. They'll encounter them within a week of moving out, and then they'll either learn on their own or live with the consequences.

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    3. the kid is obviously in need of structure and consequence..but kids arent born with that behavior..who has she spent 99% of her life with ? where has she learned these things? her dad!. you cant say that what she has learned from her friends over the last few years overrides the time and influence her parents have had in her current behavior..the problem is Obviously in the parenting!!! What ever he has been doing ISNT WORKING! and it will never work..that gun does less damage by far than his tone, his choice of words, his body language, and his choice of retaliation tactics... he is acting no more mature than the girl.. he is a control freak.. with power issues, and absolutely no communication skills with his daughter... she obviously has some serious issues that aren't being heard or addressed...the post was a blatant cry for the need to be heard and treated like a person not someone that isnt good enough, even for her own father.. they both would benefit from seeing a professional therapist/mediator, which btw would be the spouses job in a healthy family atmosphere..bottom line the dad lost his cool and acted violently, condescending his daughter for the world to see, and violated so many father/daughter boundaries its sad.. tell me how thats good parenting..how is that teaching by example how to handle things? tell me that his little temper tantrum is teaching his child things like love, and compassion or listening skills or anything! aren't those the lessons we are ultimately trying to instil in our kids? I dont want my kids to learn to back down to intimidation when they think thier right.. i want them to speak up and communicate (post) their thoughts and ideas.. because i dont have an ego so big to protect.. the way he did that was selfish and self fulfilling..and the whole facade of being a concerned parent was a ignorant attempt to re gain power/control over another human being.his daughter who at some point..for some reason ( i can guess why) stopped believing in her dad. I hope he gets help and counseling before any more damage is done or he has any more children!!!

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  11. This man is a mirror image of my father, but unlike Hannah I simply did exactly as I was told even into adulthood (21 to be exact). When I finally met someone that accepted me for myself and escaped it was wonderful. I have an awesome husband and wonderful daughter and we use positive parenting because of my experience as a child. I am so happy to finally be me and to be accepted I can't imagine not letting our daughter be who she is. I just want to hug his daughter and tell her that it will get better when she moves out.

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  12. Kids today are out of control because their parents are out of control and they learn directly how to behave from them. Perhaps looking to how parents are treating their children will shed some light on why children (who are people with the same emotional responses as adults) are reacting the way they are. Personal responsibility is definitely needed more in the parenting realm.

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  13. When a person gives a gift to someone, they relinquish all rights to that object, even if they are irritated with that person. If an adult's friend gave them a laptop, it would be seen as destruction of property to destroy that gift suddenly because they didn't like what that person posted on FB about how they felt they were being treated by that person. Why some people feel that children are not deserving of the same courtesy is beyond me. Children grow up to be adults themselves, it makes no sense that they have no rights up until a certain age. Also, the attitude that if you give a gift to someone that you have the right to dictate how they use it and they should be grateful to you no matter how terrible your own behavior is is equally absurd. What this man did was UNACCEPTABLE. It shows just how immature he is psychologically by how vindictive and petty his actions are.

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  14. Sigh. Vickie, it appears you have a couple of trolls. I loved your post. Perhaps this father may be wondering how to get his daughter's love & respect back (as one previous commenter suggests), but the fact that he takes this route means that he completely misses the point. Connection, not combat, is the key to getting what you want: a loving, mutually respectful relationship.

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  15. Neither one is perfectly in the right. Neither one should have done what they did - they should work it out between themselves, not go public with it. Not on facebook, not on youtube.

    Yes, I think he over-reacted. and yet I expected worse from your post. I also think the girl -as hurt as she is, whether he thinks her feelings are valid or not- handled it poorly too.

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    1. She is a child, of course she handled poorly. She obviously has not had role models to teach her how to handle things properly. Look how her father handled her letter!

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    2. ==She is a child, of course she handled poorly.==

      Why is it assumed that because she is a child she handled it poorly?

      Could it be that this child did not know where else to turn so she made a public plea for help hoping there would be someone to provide comfort and support?

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  16. I don't agree with this dad. I think a kid needs a place to vent about his/her parents. It's just part of growing up. She's not troubled - just normal - he's being vindictive and taking it way too personal. Facebook is the modern day fishing hole where kids can hash out their problems with their friends. I think he is headed for some serious trouble with his daughter if he doesn't learn how to listen and really communicate with her. If he shuts his daughter down from expressing herself when the problem is swear words and sweeping the floor, does he really think she is going to talk to him when the subject is rape or drugs or hatred? He's making a mountain out of a molehill, and he's not going to be her go-to solution when she does have a mountain of a problem. I think he's being a bully and using his power to show that he's stronger than she is. Listening would work wonders - communication and understanding are key. Her disrespect didn't start yesterday with that facebook post. Did he pay attention to her when she was 3 - when she was 9? Did he respond to her cries for attention then? Or did he just bully her into submission?

    Someone commented that I was just blessed with wonderful sons, well reality is I wasn't blessed with wonderful sons (well I was, but what mom doesn't say that) ... we worked through our issues with each other so we could have mutual respect and consideration ... and we still do. What is this girl going to do when she gets older? I'll tell you - she's going to try to escape from him, and she will escape right into the arms of a man who will rule over her with brute force just like her dad. It's a horrible situation all around. If you think this is healthy, you are sadly mistaken. I am friends with my sons because, well I like them as people, and we share many common interests. I watch for stuff that comes across my wall ... like bullying and intolerance, racism, violence and substance abuse. I don't know how much of a difference I make by being on Facebook, but I know I won't make any difference at all if I don't pay attention. I'm hoping for the best for this family in the video.

    I don't think this man has done one smidgen of parenting. I think he attempts to exert control over his daughter's actions, thoughts and feelings. It is normal for a teenager to rebel - they still need to be treated with respect and dignity. Where else are they going to learn it? She certainly isn't going to learn it like that ... and what's worse is that her own father is showing her the kind of treatment she should expect from a man as she grows up. That is sad... and more than a little bit scary.

    In his follow up comments in response to Fox News, he comments that he and his daughter are communicating and even laughing about some of the FB comments. I'm not surprised ... in 15 years, she has well learned how to be compliant ... AND she got what she wanted ... she is now the center of Daddy's attention. To what lengths will they go to complete this little dance next time?

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  17. Great post. A grand gesture like this, posted on the internet, says "I want to be an internet celebrity" more than "I want to punish my child."

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  18. I have to say I agree with him.
    The use of his gun was not in his house, it was not around his daughter, nor was in in the city. He did this in a more grown up way that I would have handled it with my child. Children need to respect their parents! I respected mine, not all the time but I got severe punishments. I lost my bedroom door once for slamming my door repeatedly, so does that make my parents 'abusive' or 'monsters' for giving a punishment? No!
    I do think it's a little self righteous of you to come down on a father who is trying to teach his daughter that words AND actions have consequences! The parent may not always be right, but what parent is right? I had more chores than her, I paid my own cell phone bill at her age, and I moved out early. I now have two children married and working towards being a police officer. Without my parents teaching me respect and discipline then I would not be where I am today.
    I am not meaning this as a mean post, nor am I trying to insult anyone's views. But please before you come down on him imagine it being your child writing that about you and what you would do!
    So to end this ramble I say GO DAD!

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    1. um, all that was taught was that if I have a gun I can wield power over you and destroy your property. That's not respect, that terrorizing another person. And one does not teach respect, one models respect. The consequence being displayed here are actually punishments, fake consequences, doled out by the father. The best consequence would be for dad to go to his daughter, to tell her he saw what she wrote, to say that he's hurt, and to figure out how to repair this relationship. Respect is something that is mutual and nourished, not forced at gunpoint.

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    2. April,
      The idea that children need to respect their parents is a dangerous sentiment! Age nor title do not earn respect. Actions / behavior do.

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    3. Clearly, April, you have no understanding of the devastation Mr. Jordan has caused for his daughter. I doubt if more than a couple hundred people, at most, ever saw what Hannah posted. However, Mr. Jordan has made her the laughing stock of millions, over 28 million people at last count. Not only that, but he has told the world that she is lazy (I believe a gross exhaggeration) and generally no good or of bad character. All of this is permanently posted on Facebook and left open for millions to see. Tell me, would you HIRE a person whose own father believes is of poor character? Would you admit such a person to your school? There are thousands of employers and schools who will never give this girl a chance, and it is all because of the revenge her father took against her.

      No one seems to see the devastating harm that has been done to her. Her life is practically over at 15. I hope and pray that she gets some counseling help and she gets away from that lousy family ASAP. It is her only hope.

      Sheesh.

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  19. This daughter's letter is a cry for some connection with her parents, and the father's response is to be a douche. Of course we're mad at this father. He's not a guide helping this child become a grounded adult. He's an egomaniac more interested in being right than building a relationship. That's not parenting. That's emotional abuse.

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  20. I see it as a last ditch effort by a frustrated father who has tried everything to get his daughter to do the right things. She's done this kind of thing before and as a parent of a daughter who over exaggerates when she feels "wronged" (ie: "I haven't eaten in DAYS!" when she just had a full lunch but just CAN'T wait until supper that's being made right at that moment. And that's just one example. :P) He mentioned trying all the "approved" ways to get through to her but none of them worked. There's nothing scarier than having an unruly girl. No matter what you try, no matter how understanding or tough you try to be, nothing gets through to them. They feel they've been wronged and they lash out. Well... he lashed back. Maybe this time she'll listen. Probably not. Once again she was wronged and every bleeding heart is telling her she's right. It's not like he pointed the gun AT her. :P Instead of feeling sorry for a girl who has no respect for her elders maybe you should be telling her that what she did was wrong and could have serious consequences. That kind of exaggeration, in the wrong hands can ruin a family. But no... she's completely in the right.

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    1. Why would a parent care so much about what their childrens friends think about them? She vented to friends. Everyone vents to friends.

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    2. Serious consequences indeed. Being the laughing-stock of millions. Not getting into a good school or getting a job are serious. But I guess that is what her father MEANT to do to her.

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  21. You said it!!! I wish I knew her so I could be her friend and show her all adults don't treat kids like this!!! Thanks for writing this...I hope he gets a chance to read it. Oh, and the mom is no better I guess...he said that Mom wanted a bullet in the computer for her, too...so sad... :(

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  22. perhaps the authorities will step in on her behalf. or oprah.

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  23. I don't agree with the father taking a 44 to the computer, but with having teens of my own I wouldn't have tolerated her behavior either. Grounding didn't keep her attention - she repeated the same thing again - and tried to be sly about it. He didn't "break into" her account - the parents have an account for the family dog that she didn't block - and they posted a picture of the dog on it's account and saw what she wrote. Oops? Busted? She was being a teenager venting her frustration over having to do a few chores etc. They all do that from time to time - doesn't make it a fact she's being abused. Life doesn't meet anyone half way - and in the real world she has to face consequences the same as the rest of us. I DO NOT AGREE with the father destroying the computer, that was a bad choice on his part. On the same token - her behavior is that of a teenager that needed correction. I wasn't allowed to be "sassy", "use foul language", "boo-hoo over chores" either. I lost privileges too and occasionally was taken over my dad's knee. I learned to be respectful. She, like the rest of us in this world, has to learn that too.

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    1. Why does being sassy, using foul language, or griping about chores "need correction"?

      As an adult, I occasionally see my peers being sassy, cursing, and griping about work they're assigned or expected to do. No one advocates destroying their property or committing acts of violence against them in order to "correct" this behavior.

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    2. Grounding a person for three months is excessive. The reality is that grounding didn't get her attention because for many of us force and coercion doesn't work.

      If you listen closely to the video, it is not necessarily "her chores" that are an issue but how she feels her parents view her expected service to them.

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  24. I think if Hannah was posting something like this, there was a lot of pent up rage that came from more than just being made to do chores. Something had gone bad long before and this was simply when it came to a head. I think the father only made it worse by punishing her and destroying her computer instead of listening to her as a fellow human being.

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  25. It doesn't matter if other people think the chores she had to do are easy, it's how she perceives them. Also, if her home life burdened her so much that she had to vent on facebook, it shows that she can't express her feelings at home.
    You have to teach your children respect by respecting them also. And it doesn't matter if he "didn't point the gun at her", as someone already said, a gun is a symbol of violent power and it's scary that he uses it to destroy her property. He is trying to embarrass her and exert his power through the use of a weapon, and that is absolutely not okay! Some people here also said she has to learn respect, to that I have to ask: do you think he is acting respectfully? You learn from your parents, and through this the only thing she is learning is to handle problems violently and disrespectfully, and to be scared of her father.

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  26. Wouldn't a sit down conversation, in which both the adult and the 15 year old child express their feelings, be a much better way to convey a message? An open dialogue with an open heart and mind may allow for a better relationship. Does public revenge truly teach a child/parent to resolve the real issue at hand? I'm fairly certain that if more adults learned to share WHY they are hurt instead of how ANGRY they are, children will understand the repercussions of their words and/or actions (and maybe even regret them). Teaching through humility is a far better tool than embarrassment or shame. I will go as far to say, the lesson this girl may have learned is to not trust her parents and to never share her feelings about her unhappiness again.

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  27. I also want to say, regarding this blog's comment on the chores...that there are a few ways to look at that issue: for one, I believe in community mindedness and personal responsibility, so my 4 year old has "chores" to do. They are things that aid the family but that are part of his life and they will be those kind of things for as long as they live with me. However, in the letter, this girl mentioned fetching coffee and tending garden...and that they have a maid...now all of that info points to a mixed image, so who's to say what is true, but I would not have a child get my drink other thN by polite request. I DO however think that every child should have chores as a vested responsibility in the home, no exceptions.

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  28. If she had a boyfriend that got angry at her and shot her computer just because she had vented on Facebook people would be screaming that it's emotional abuse and to get a restraining order. It would be viewed as a very serious threat.

    Because this is a father doing it to his daughter it's good parenting or an acceptable last ditch effort? Nope, if it's emotional abuse in one situation it's emotional abuse in all situations and therefore unacceptable.

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  29. Thank you for writing this post. I read your blog and blogs like yours to make me feel better after coming across videos like this (or horrible articles and comments).

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  30. I have a slightly off-topic question. I'm curious why you think that requiring children to make their own beds is "an inexplicable thing to require of someone"?

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    1. It's a matter of how you look at personal space. Some people believe a teen's room is her own space, and within reason, she should be able to experiment with how various levels of tidiness affect her state of mind, efficiency, etc. I know being required to make my bed never clued me in to how much I prefer a tidy room... I didn't discover this until I was an adult making my own choices. And you know... Sometimes I still don't make my bed, even knowing that.

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  31. With all due respect, you don't know the whole story and you're making judgements on this man's parenting, his daughter and his family that are unfair.

    For the record, he is not proud of how he handled the situation and I think the grace and humility that he's handling the fall out from it speaks volumes about his character as a man and as a father. His daughter is and will be fine and will probably come out of this stronger.

    Do I agree with how he handled this? No. Would I do the same? No. But do I judge him for doing what he thought would be an effective lesson? No. We all fail as parents and we all handle situations in ways we're not proud. May I have the grace this man does should I ever react poorly to one of my children. And may I be free from the condemnation of others.

    For a more complete picture of this family and how they're handling everything, read this:

    http://www.litefm.com/cc-common/mainheadlines3.html?feed=421220&article=9744152

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  32. This post is so one-sided I could hardly believe it was serious and not satire. Sorry to break it to some folks, but taking the computer that he paid for (and continues to pay for through man hours and software) and taking it away falls in-line with traditional punishment. He clearly states she's done something similar to this before and she had it taken away but later returned. She decided to disobey and disrespect her family again. To the person that said maybe he should do his share of chores: he hAd just spent six hours worth $100 and $130 in software, he owns his own IT business which allows him to buy her computer, the software, in addition to a cell phone and providing her a house. Every member of a family must contribute, not just take. Every reasonable adult can remember the feeling of being a teenager and feeling like Hannah. Those reasonable adults will also acknowledge that the avenue she chose to express this was inappropriate as she learned the first time she did something similar to this. A reasonable person will also not akin this guys video to abuse of his daughter. Sorry, but, a computer is not required for a healthy life. A computer, Internet, and Facebook are privileges, not necessities. He is not beating her, making her watch him shoot the computer, pointing the gun at her, making her go without meals, or any other form of extreme punishment. For those folks saying he is disrespecting her: she clearly didn't learn from earlier attempts to dissuade her from such posts. Again, she disrespected him and her mother. This was not by accident as she had made the mental choice to attempt to block her patents from viewing the post which is NOT the same as a diary due to the fact it's on a public networking site which means she didn't have a true reasonable expectation of privacy. If she truly feels so oppressed and violated she always has the option of getting a job, buying her own computer, and moving out to somewhere she doesn't have to clean up after other people. If she does this, she'll learn what nearly ever adult has learned:it ain't easy. Living on your own means you don't have money for a new computer, new cell phone, new iPod, Internet, rent, food, utilities, etc. This father isn't asking his daughter to pay rent or buy groceries; she eats, sleeps, and lives basically for free. If Hannah honestly is so unhappy, she always has the option of being emancipated or going into the state's foster system. Now I do realize neither side is working towards a healthier relationship, but every teenager has strained relations with their parents from time to time. This guy is actively parenting as clearly expressed by him buying her a computer, working on the computer for free, providing her a house, a bed, food, and clothes, and most importantly he's teaching her a life lesson: if she grows up and rants about her boss like that on a public forum she will lose her job and the ability to pay for the things she wants; he is also teaching her discipline by doing chores which is akin to a work ethic That she clearly lacks. He is actively involved in her life and development by correcting inappropriate actions. A bad father would allow her too continue such behavior unchecked which would probably open the door to worse behaviors.

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    1. A good father would have open communication with his child. A good father would create a mutually respectful relationship with his child. I know this because I am the mother of a 15 year old girl.

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    2. It is NOT the taking of the computer that is of issue. I believe that the father had the right to take away the computer. In fact, the right thing would have been to take the computer away permanently, wipe it and sell or donate it. Parents should DISCIPLINE wrong behavior, not take REVENGE for it. And for all you people that think that parents have a Biblically-based right to slavish "respect," you need to read Ephesians 6:4. This man's behaviour was not in harmony with Bible principles. No one is entitled to slavish obedience in this life. Not parents, not bosses, not anyone. Our children are not our chattels, but we as parents have a stewardship to raise up good, decent men and women. There are no exceptions to the command that all follow the golden rule: Do unto others as you would have them do unto you. Jesus did not say that we should seek revenge on those who hurt us.

      Mr. Jordan has modeled terrible behavior and aired that to millions of people.

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  33. A father who does what he says as a punishment. My my my what is the world coming to? After the first instance, he followed through if she did it again! Rage and anger...come on. He didn't go off. He planned and followed through.

    As for her being oppressed and calling out for help...god forbid the kid have a few chores. No need to build character or even have her help the family unit. Oppressed and cries for attention aren't bitching on your facebook. They are cutting yourself, suicide attempts, or other such attempts. She is a teenager who complained. People complain and bitch...she just did it at the wrong place and the wrong way with the slander in there. Complaining does not equal oppression or depression. The stuff she complained about was out of laziness. My father is the same type of man and I had the same type of chores...dear god with the 20-30 min of my life cleaning up daily...how ever did I go on.

    And as for all the weepy sad parents on here. I pray that your kids don't turn into the kids that think everything is going to get handed to them...as soon as they are out of your sphere there will be some hard kicks to the asses for them.

    Thank you lord for my father and what he did for me.

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    1. Funny thing is everyone I know who have parented this way and have teens and adult children do not have these issues. They are not entitled but respectful, helpful, loving humans. They have healthy relationships with health humans. That speaks volumes to me.

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    2. Last thought, I had a father like that, like many of the posters on this thread. I no longer aglow him in my life. Whereas he could abuse with impunity as a child I get to chose who I'm around as an adult. The healthier I became the clearer it was to me that he didn't belong in my life.

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  34. I found this man's controlling attitude and uncontrolled rage very disturbing, and I was even more disturbed by the tens of thousands of commenters supporting him. It speaks volume about our culture. :-(

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  35. for one that isn't her property!! second, children have no authority in a household. it's not a democracy. Yes, they can tell the parents their opinion, but they should NEVER disrespect the parents. The parents are the head of the household. and they control what the child does. The child lives under the parents' roof that they pay for. I can understand this being terrible if it was a laptop SHE paid for, but she didn't. it's something he bought. He can do whatever he wants to it. He wasn't doing it in anger. He was DISAPPOINTED in her. He wanted to teach her a lesson once and for all that she ain't gonna get away with it anymore and she would not be gettin another laptop unless she paid for it herself. Thirdly he is by no means violent. HE can shoot a bullet (9 bullets) into a laptop if he wants. It's his property. In no way is the laptop representing her, it's representing a consequence that she is paying for being disrespectful. it's his way to teach her a lesson. it doesn't make it wrong. I couldn't afford to put bullets through a laptop. I would have just kept it for myself and used it in front of her and never allowed her to have her own laptop until she bought her own!!

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    1. Parents CONTROL their children?!!! Hahahahaha!!!! No parent can control their child. Only model and guide. And when people have children they HAVE to provide for their child. The child does NOT owe their parent anything for that OR for any gifts the parents decides to give the child. How ridiculous.

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  36. Whaaaaat?! Really? "If the chores are as easy as he says they should be, why not just do them himself?" For real. Why shouldn't a 15-year-old do a few chores? It's GOOD for her to have to learn how to take care of things around the house. TRUST ME!! I was the spoiled one in my family (I was sickly, and the youngest), and I wasn't made to do chores on any kind of regular basis. I flat out refused sometimes. Let me tell you, I had a HELL of a time learning to take care of my OWN house well when I moved out!! There were things I had NO idea how to do. I will DEFINITELY (try to) have my children do age-appropriate chores when they are old enough. And WHY in the world is it an "inexplicable thing to require of someone" to have them make their OWN BED? When you make your bed, your whole bedroom instantly looks neater--even if there is a pile of clothes on the floor, or dust everywhere. I'm on Informed Choice, but this is taking things WAY too far. Did the dad overreact? Yes. Do I think he's a terrible, vindictive, abusive father, based on this stupid video? No! Yes, his daughter was expressing her feelings. But was she telling the truth? I doubt it very much. I'm sure she was feeling overwhelmed, and frustrated, and mad, and overreacted, too. She was ranting, and she probably hid the post from her parents by making it visible to everyone on her list but them. You can do that on Facebook. But probably, someone who knows her parents saw it, and told them about it. The issue obviously could've been handled better. I think most people are in agreement on that. But guess what? Her father is probably just human, like the rest of us, and did the wrong thing--as did his daughter.

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  37. Thank you. My husband and I watched this video in shock and horror. I wasn't able to put into words everything that bothered me about it but you did. Thank you.

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  38. Great post, I completely agree!

    So many people completely miss the issues with this. It's not simply about a whiny teenager being a brat and dad teaching her a lesson. She is a person with feelings and rights as a human being. He has feelings and rights too...however he decided that his feelings and his rights are "above" hers because she's a "little person" and like most in this world that he "owns" her because she's his "child".

    Our children do not OWE us ANYTHING! WE OWE THEM! To respect, love and care for them, not bully them and treat them like crap because we "can".

    If this was his "employee" this would be illegal, but since it's his "child" it's "ok". Just like you can't hit your wife but you can hit your kid. :/

    Teenagers are finicky things...they are often going through so many struggles and mixed emotions, hormones, life changes, growing etc. But what we often forget and don't see is that they have 14, 15, 16, 17 YEARS of pain built up, we don't know the dynamics of their relationship but we can see even in these few moments the very rocky relationship they have...people think this is just a few weeks worth of angst she vented about but no, this is YEARS of frustration, anger, sadness, etc that she "vented" about. Sure she may have been "wrong" or said hurtful things. She's still a CHILD and she's HUMAN. We all make mistakes...just like dad just did. But come on, let's think about this..WHAT exactly is he "teaching" her??? Did he actually teach her a BETTER way to respond to her frustration? um NO, worse! She vented on her PRIVATE WALL to a few friends...he vented to the whole freaking WORLD! HE a grown man, called his own DAUGHTER, rude and hurtful things. He destroyed her property. WHAT did that "teach" her? HOW did that MODEL appropriate response and reaction to her? did he teach her FORGIVENESS?? RESPECT? LOVE? KINDNESS? Responsibility? what exactly DID he "teach" her?? besides that he can be a bigger jerk?

    1If I speak in the tonguesa of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. 2If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. 3If I give all I possess to the poor and surrender my body to the flames,b but have not love, I gain nothing.

    4Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

    8Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. 9For we know in part and we prophesy in part, 10but when perfection comes, the imperfect disappears. 11When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put childish ways behind me. 12Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.

    13And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.

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  39. “If you listen closely to the video, it is not necessarily "her chores" that are an issue but how she feels her parents view her expected service to them.”

    This is exactly it. Expecting everyone to contribute to the family chores is perfectly acceptable and healthy. What isn’t is expecting anyone, children or not, to do them without feeling disgruntled if they are being treated like they owe you the service simply because they exist. Despite what many believe, children are not born to provide services for their parents. If it is expected that they contribute within the home, all members must contribute equally. Simply being grateful to another person for what they do within the home is enough reward, assuming it is given freely. To expect anyone to not react negatively when they are treated with such disregard by their own family lacks a basic understanding about healthy human psychology.

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    1. I don't agree that it is "perfectly acceptable and healthy" to expect "everyone to contribute to the family chores"

      This statement isn't ok.

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  40. Most of my friends on facebook applauded this whole situation, marveling at the ingenuity of it. I wanted to cry for both the father and the daughter.

    I grew up in a home where the parents treated me like I was property, had no rights, required absolute obedience 100% of the time, and where, from a very young child, had to do way more than a fair share of the work around the home.

    On one hand, I am grateful that I know how to work. On the other hand, I was not taught how to rest. I also learned that I could not be real in front of my parents, that obedience and a facade of behavior was better than a relationship. I grew up afraid of my parents. And fear does not create room for a real relationship.

    I am now in my 30's and I do not have the relationship I would like to have with my parents. They still do not want to give up these ideas of absolute obedience that they believe is required from me towards them, even though I am an adult.

    My own child is now one year old and we are doing things very differently from how I was raised. I am thinking of her as someone, who even very young, deserves respect. I believe if I model that respect towards her, I will get respect back. I am treating her the way I wish I was treated growing up. I value connecting with her and letting her know how important she is to me. Mistakes are going to be allowed. Everyone, including me and the husby, will contribute to how the household is run. But I won't be requiring her to serve me. Serving someone is a choice. I will be modeling to her how to serve someone righteously every single day. In ways that I serve her right now, she is already starting to reciprocate back, by her own choice - at ONE YEAR OLD!

    I am simply loving the joy of having a real relationship with her. It is something I wish for every parent and child out there. Not everyone knows how to cultivate relationship. It takes time, wisdom, patience, mistakes, a giving up of unrighteous authority and ego, and love. Relationship is a hard territory to create, nurture, and hold on to, but it is so worth it! <3

    BlackSheepPrincess.wordpress.com

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  41. "...or did he immediately start holding it over her head, demanding appreciation for it?" My money's on this one.
    Thanks for the fantastic essay!
    [linked to you.]

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  42. I agree with everything you said. I think this is disgusting. This teaches a child nothing and I considered it abuse from the word go. I wasn't raised like this and I don't raise my children that way. How would all of the people raging over how cool he was have felt if she would have killed herself the next day? Teenage emotions are not to be played with. This is a hard time in a childs life when they need guidance and love. Not what she got.

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