I spent a few seconds on the moral dilemma thus posed. Do I let him suffer the consequences of his action, or do I bail him out?
I bailed him out for several reasons. The first and most important was this: he’s already in a heap of consequences and if they get worse I want him to know, to the bottom of his soul, that the situation is entirely the result of his own actions. I will not be taking any blame. I am willing to let him fail, absolutely, but not if he’s going to attribute the failure to factors outside his control. No one wins in that scenario.
Second, I haven’t brought him something forgotten since he was in fourth grade. In other words, he hasn’t needed bailing out like this in a good long time. He has just used his chance for the next couple years.
Third, he already had a rough morning full of consequences. On Tuesdays, as I have mentioned before, he is supposed to email his core teachers his grades from the online system and check in with them. While I don’t love the assignment, I do think he has to do it. T. is not with me on Tuesdays, so I asked him in passing yesterday whether he had done it or not. Guess what? Not. I reminded him twice more last night to do it. This morning he said, “Oh #$%^, I forgot.” It took him long enough to look up the grades, remember his email password, and compose the message that he was hard-pressed to get out the door on time.
I think it was the right decision, even though it pissed me off to have to do all that driving. I reserve the right to change my mind if he’s in a bad mood when I pick him up, though.