Privacy between a mother and a child is a difficult thing. The mother grows accustomed to caring for her child's most intimate needs for many years. Certainly as the child grows older the child gains more and more autonomy, but the mother is still providing for the child and responsible for the child's safety. As the child becomes a teen, the child is most likely going to attempt to conceal dangerous behavior from the mother. I don't think the mother needs to turn a blind eye to that and say that privacy trumps safety. All things considered, I think that it is best not to open letters or read diaries, and surely many children act responsibly and maturely and have earned that respect. I do think that if anyone leaves a letter out of an envelope in a common area, it might be expected that another member of the family is going to pick it up an look at it. I also think a child might get upset about that. I think that an adult would have enough respect for a parent not to "flip out," but to make a request that it not happen again, and then to make sure that his or her private correspondence is kept in a private place and not left out for others to see. And if the child relies on the parent to clean up the room and do laundry, the child really can't complain about a lack of privacy.
That's just my take on it, and every family is different and handles things in different ways, if a parent has established that mail is going to be read until the child leaves the house, I don't have a problem with that either. I know that parents are extremely irritating to a child as the child grows older and I certainly experienced that irritation, but now I've had the opportunity to see both sides, and I have more sympathy for the parent and the parents' reasons for what they do. Not that they are always right, but that most parents are trying to do the best they can in a very difficult job.
I don't agree, but probably because this is not the way I was raised. My mother would never dare read my letters from age 10 up at least. Like I never felt the need to have a password on my phone scared that she would read my text messages. Parents need to know that, yes, kids and teens are going to do stuff that they don't want their parents to know. But most of it is out of shame and the basis of a parent/child relationship. I just think that if you don't give a teen privacy you're only going to make things a lot worse. I never had any kind of "flipping out" problem with my mom or dad, or any other very big argument because they always treated me with the respect any adult deserves. And that includes privacy. My mom and dad trusted me and I trusted them. If ever I had spotted my mom looking through my stuff, I wouldn't trust her as much as I did then or as I do know. Because trust is really easy to break, you know that.
And there is also one thing that we can't deny, a relationship between a parent and a child is never "equal". And it goes both ways. A parent can't say "if I do your laundry, you're not acting like and adult, so I won't treat you like and adult, and therefor I have the right to read your mail". That wouldn't work at all.
I believe that the best way to raise a teenager is to treat them like an adult. Obviously, I don't mean let them go out and get drunk or not check on them and what they are doing and where you're going. It's a difficult balance but it is possible, I should know.
. My mother always had everything under control, yet she gave me all the freedom I could ever ask for. As a teen I traveled without her, I was allowed to go out at night and come back at 5am or later (I had to make sure I had a safe way to get home) and she was always aware what was going on in my life without being too nosy.