I originally thought that the hardest part about being a parent would be over once all of my children were no longer toddlers. But as they slowly transitioned into teenagers—one by one—I quickly realized that my hardest days as a father lie ahead. You tell your son or daughter to not do something, only for them to spite you the minute they get a chance. I had to learn ways of navigating their reactions and what they were anticipating from me, and in a sense use “reverse psychology” to get them to conform to my rules. More often than not I feel like I’m talking to a brick wall. I tell them specifically that they are not allowed to adjust the thermostat for the central heating and cooling system. My wife and I are the ones who control the indoor climate at home; otherwise the air conditioner would be left on at 66 degrees and we’d come home to a fried HVAC system. In the winter our kids would have the heat up so high that our propane bill would be outrageous! We gave up on scolding them and finally bought a plastic lockbox to put over the thermostat for the central HVAC system. Somedays I wonder where I went wrong as a parent to need a lockbox over the HVAC thermostat, but the pragmatic side of my brain doesn’t care what it takes to maintain our energy budget. Hopefully it will program them into avoiding the urge to adjust the temperature if they go so many months or years without having the chance. Perhaps at some point we won’t need a lockbox on the HVAC thermostat.