Mom Left Note For Disrespectful Son, And Now It’s Going Viral

Being a parent to a cocky, disrespectful teenager is far from easy, and different parents have different approaches to get their children to behave.

One mom, Heidi Johnson, wrote a handwritten letter to her son, Aaron, and shared it on Facebook. She didn’t intend for the post to go viral. She didn’t even intend to make the post public. It was supposed to just be for friends to see, but she does not regret her post or the fact that it’s public.

In the letter to her 13-year-old son, Johnson reprimanded her son treating her like a “roommate.” She went on to give him an itemized bill for rent, food, etc that totaled over $700. If he was going to treat her like a roommate instead of his mom, she would do the same.

Johnson signed the note, “Love Mom,” and she truly does love her son. She followed up the post with another post explaining some backstory to the situation. She also reassured parents who were criticizing her that “I am not going to put my 13 year old on the street if he can’t pay his half of the rent. I am not wanting him to pay anything. I want him to take pride in his home, his space, and appreciate the gifts and blessings we have.”

She added that she never intended for Aaron to pay the bill. Instead, she wanted him to “gain an appreciation of what things cost.” The reason Johnson wrote the note was to make sure her son understood “what life would look like if I was not his ‘parent,’ but rather a ‘roommate.’ It was a lesson about gratitude and respect from the very beginning.”

Johnson also explained that before she wrote the note, her son had lied about doing his homework, and when she told him she was going to restrict his internet access, he responded, “Well, I am making money now.” She explained that the money he was referring to was a little bit of income he was making from his YouTube channel, but not nearly enough to pay for food and rent.

The public note has not hurt Johnson’s relationship with her son. She explained, “He and I still talk as openly as ever. He has apologized multiple times.”

Johnson has also had parents turning to her for advice since she posted the note to her son. She told TODAY, “My post seems to have opened a door, and people feel safe coming to me and asking for advice, venting, or even just have someone bear witness to their experience by listening and opening up and sharing a piece of myself in return.”