Thursday 16 December 2010

An unexpected benefit of Facebook

Between the hours of 11pm Tuesday and 1pm Wednesday I had a particularly stressful time. 
My daughter had gone for a drink with friends at the local pub and returned home in a very bad way.  Not drunk - absolutely manic and out of control.  It would appear someone had spiked her drink.  She had walked home with a friend and been absolutely fine, but 10 mins inside the house and she was totally wild.  So very, very scary to witness. 
Wednesday lunchtime I had a phone call from my son.  Absolutely distraught.  He had received an email from the university to say that they suspected him of plagiarism in 2 essays he had just handed in.  He literally could not talk coherently.  All I heard was snatches of comments like 'this is so serious' 'they could kick me out'  'I could have wasted 3 years of hard work'  and most importantly 'I haven't done anything wrong'.  He had a meeting on 21 January.  Clearly he could not wait that long.  He rang and pestered and someone took pity on this poor emotional boy and he saw the Director of Politics.  Where it quickly became evident that the problem was that he had referenced some quotes incorrectly.  They discussed his options as he had made a mistake - ignorance is no defence!  A mistake that he will not make again I hasten to add!  So he has to lose some points but in consideration of the other possibilities ie not getting any marks for either essay were far worse.  A harsh lesson to learn.
I had posted status reports on Facebook that eluded to trouble but I didn't think that either offspring would want their troubles publicised by their mum so kept things brief.  I have been totally stunned by the amount of comments, calls, texts and kind words of concern that this has generated - and although my husband sometimes makes scathing comments when I say something about someone on Facebook, like 'is it a real friend or a Facebook friend' - I have to say that my Facebook friends have shown such concern, it's really touching.
So please excuse my absence this week, it's not been the best week of my year!


Liberty :) said...

Sounds like a nightmare for you. I had my drink spiked once, I barely used to drink a thing and a friend called my mum and dad, I couldn't walk, talk or remember anything - absolutely awful. Never had memory loss before or since drinking so must have been spiked, knew 99% of people at the party really well too. Worrying.

Very, very harsh what they did to your son! Seriously, if I had cautioned a student every time they had incorrectly ref'd a quote, I'd do nothing else in my job! By the wya, in case anything similar ever happens, most universities would never take this any further than knocking a few marks off (which I still think he can contest for "ignorance") - kicking someone out of uni presents them with so much paper work and in this day and age the "offender" could so easily sue them for all kinds of things, they take a very light touch approach I promise (despite the threats!).

Hope your week improves lovely xoxo

Denise said...

So glad things are looking up and you are not so stressed. Yep,FB can come up trumps someties that's for sure xx

humel said...

So glad your Facebook friends rallied round during such a difficult time. Gosh, both these things sound horrible. Is your daughter OK now? And has your son got over the shock?

The Doctor is involved in a plagiarism case from the other side. Really not fun. Despite what Kate says, people can lose their university place if the case is serious enough, but the evidence would have to be pretty strong and obviously this wasn't at all the case with your son. Nasty thing for him to go through xx

scrappyjacky said...

Oh dear, awful for them both to happen in the same week...hoping for reasonably happy endings to both situations.

Deb @ PaperTurtle said...

Oh my gosh, Deb. No wonder you were upset! I saw your Facebook status and thought "uh-oh!" Certainly NOT a fun time for you. :o(

I have found that Facebook (and my beloved blog) is a great place to get love and support when I need it most. I'm glad it was that way for you too, Deb.

Anonymous said...

So glad things are looking brighter xxx

Amy said...

Oh deb, such a tough week for you all! Take care and I hope things are sorted for your son soon and that your daughter does NOT have this dreadful experience ever again!

Sian said...

Cor, who'd be a parent, eh? That's just miserable! I'm sorry to hear both of these stories and I hope your week improves. Anything nice planned for the weekend?

Rachel Brett said...

Oh my goodness Deb, what a worrying week! I'm so glad its all sorted now. Hope you have a good weekend :)