12-Year-Old Stole Mom's Credit Cards & Flew to Bali Because He 'Doesn't Like the Word No'

kid stole mom's credit card
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Getting into arguments with your kids is unavoidable, especially as they get older. While parents are used to getting a ton of attitude after these fights, the last thing we expect is for our kids to go completely off the rails and do something unimaginable. After one mom got into an argument with her 12-year-old son, he stole her credit card and went on a full vacation to Bali without anyone knowing. Now that he's home safe, people are making it clear they think the fault for his actions lies with his "stupid" parents

  • Twelve-year-old "Drew" -- a pseudonym he's been given by Australia's 9News -- had been to Bali with his family before.

    He, along with his separated parents and older sister, actually took annual trips to the popular Indonesian island. But when the family decided to cancel their 2018 trip, Drew got into a big fight with his mom, Emma, about it. Emma told him that they weren't going to Bali, and according to her, Drew "just doesn't like the word no."

    So instead of sulking in his room, Drew stole his mom's credit card and started making travel plans of his own. His mom and dad caught wind of his actions after he made two failed attempts to book plane tickets with different Australian airlines who told him he couldn't fly as a minor without paperwork from his parents. Emma and her ex-husband claim they contacted the Australian Federal Police (AFP) about their son's solo travel attempts and were allegedly told Drew's passport would be flagged if he tried to travel again.

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  • After more research, the 12-year-old realized there were multiple airlines that would allow him to travel overseas alone.

    All he would need was his passport and his student ID. So Drew got ahold of his mom's credit cards again and booked a trip to Denpasar, Bali. He also made accommodations at a hotel. 

    After telling his parents he was off to school, the preteen packed up and got his passport from his grandmother Linda. He went through self-service checkouts at the airport and boarded his flight. CNN reports that Drew's passport wasn't flagged by the AFP, and while airport authorities checked his identification when he landed for a short layover in Perth, Australia, no one ever asked him why he was alone. "They just asked for my student ID and passport to prove that I'm over 12 and that I'm in secondary school," he told 9News

    Drew said he was questioned at his hotel in Bali, but assured staff that his older sister was going to be checking in later. He spent the next few days completely alone in a foreign country. "It was great," he said. "I wanted to go on an adventure."

  • Drew was reported missing on March 8 by his parents, but authorities didn't catch up with him until March 17.

    His parents were already in Bali looking for their son when authorities returned the 12-year-old to them. His mom, Emma, said she was "shocked" and "disgusted." While the mom is obviously happy to have her son back safe and unharmed, she's putting the brunt of the blame on the airlines, hotels, and AFP that essentially allowed him to travel alone and unchecked. "It's easy, it's way too easy," she said. "There's a problem in our system." 

    But according to CNN, the AFP said they didn't put a travel alert on Drew's passport like Emma claimed they did because their agency "does not have the power to cancel passports or to request the cancellation of a passport" unless the passport belongs to a suspected criminal. They did say, however, that they were putting things in motion to prevent something like this from ever happening again. "The AFP will work with partner agencies to review the circumstances of this matter and current operating procedures, to ensure this type of incident does not occur again," they said. 


  • In the aftermath of Drew's dangerous escape, people are slamming Emma for raising a "spoiled" and "obnoxious" kid.

    kid stole mom's credit card
  • They also think she shouldn't be blaming the airlines and the AFP for her bad decisions as a parent.

    kid stole mom's credit card
  • Some people even think Emma and her ex-husband should be brought up on child neglect charges.

    kid stole mom's credit card
  • On the other side, there are some who view Drew's Bali vacation as being the actions of a really clever kid.

    kid stole mom's credit card
  • And there are those who are adamant that Emma shouldn't be facing the blame for her son's actions.

    kid stole mom's credit card

    These comments definitely got heated, but I definitely don't think Emma is a "bad mom." The mom, along with her ex, contacted authorities and did everything they could to find their son. But the fault doesn't necessarily fall completely on the airlines, the AFP, or the hotels that allowed him in, either. If anything, this story -- and the possible danger Drew could have found himself in -- proves there needs to be some tightening of the rules when it comes to minors traveling unaccompanied.

behavior discipline