K.C. asks from East Lansing, MI on September 24, 2006
Ready for Empty Nest
I have a 19 year old daughter who just doesn't seem to be motivated to move on with life. No apsirations for college. Unemployed. My 15 year old son has asked me why I allow this. I don't want her to leave home, just want her to be self reliant. Any suggestions?
So What Happened?™
Yeah, finally, she got a job. She starts tomorrow. She'll be a cashier in a grocery. It's a start in the right direction. Thanks for all your support. I really appreciate it.
C.C. answers from Kalamazoo on September 25, 2006
Well I can tell you from personnel experience that you do need to lay down a few ground rules. I dont have kids that age but I was that age about 6 yrs ago. My mom and dad told me after High school that if I didnt go to college that I had to hold a Job and pay rent. I had to pay them 150$ a month to stay in there house, what person is going to get free roam of a house for 150$ no one!I thought they were crazy at first, but then came to realize I had it pretty good, I paid 150$ for a 4 bdrm house! I Changed my mind and I worked 2 jobs, Try and help her see what she's into and if maybe you can help her find a job she would like. Loafing at home is not gunna help her and she needs to know that. She may need help knowing where to look for a good job. Good luck
L.D. answers from Kalamazoo on September 24, 2006
K., If your daughter is not going to college she needs to get a job. My parents made me and all of my siblings pay rent to them. The rent of course, was very reseasonable. Then (we did not know this) but when we moved out the "rent money" was given back to us to use on a down payment or security payment for housing. This was a GREAT way to teach us responsibility. I feel strongly that while you don't really want your daughter to move out...she needs to be helping with the bills. Especially when you are a single mom. I really think you need to be tough on this one or she won't ever be able to take care of herself.
1 mom found this helpful
R.R. answers from Cincinnati on September 25, 2006
We don't plan to allow our children to stay with us if they won't attend college after high school. Why would we? If they feel they can make it through life without a degree then more power to them- bye, bye! Don't stay in my home watching free cable, eating free groceries, enjoying free utilities & thinking "this isn't so bad" (when mom & dad had to struggle to put themselves through college)
Let her get an apartment, a full time minimum wage job, enjoy eating macaroni & getting her phone turned off.....her tune will change. (hopefully)
B.R. answers from Columbus on September 24, 2006
Keli, You didn't give enough background information to know if this calls for tough love or if your daughter is suffering from depression. There are different causes for this, and you need to know which is the correct way to respond.
Is this typical of her? Has she been this way all her life? Has anything bad happened to her or her friends lately? Has she ever had drug or alcohol problems? Has she ever worked? Does she drive? Who pays for her car? Other than this, is she a good kid, do you get along?
Dr. Phil had a couple of really good programs dealing with this issue. Maybe there's some info still on his website. (By the way, apathy and lack of passion, direction, etc. in one's life is often experienced by people who do not have a personal relationship with Jesus.Could you help her get involved in a good church?)
B.C. answers from Cleveland on September 24, 2006
HI K., Rules in your house. Sit your adult child down and ask her if she is an adult. She will answer yes. The rest is just follow through. Lay down the law in your house. Good Luck. B.
C.S. answers from Kalamazoo on September 25, 2006
It wasn't very long ago I was in the same situation as your daughter. I was 19, depressed, and had no idea what I wanted to do with my life. My mother realized this and insisted I either get a full time job and my own apartment or that I apply to college. She gave me a time limit to do these things and the resources to do them. I decided to apply to college, was accepted, and moved out. It was the best thing my mom could have done for me. Sometimes a little tough love is the only thing for your kids. I am grateful to my mother for what she did.
M.K. answers from Kalamazoo on September 25, 2006
My husband's 18 year old (19 next month) just moved in with us for college. She works full time too. There's no ifs, ands, or buts about it - we made it very clear that working and/or going to school full time were REQUIREMENTS for living under our roof. We wrote up a contract, actually, specifying what expenses each of us (including her bio-mom) were responsible for.
I think you need to make your expectations clear, then stick to your guns!!
S. answers from Cleveland on September 24, 2006
No I don't but would like to hear from you if you figure out the answer. I have a 21 year old in the same position. Has a job but no future plans. Good luck~
P.B. answers from Dayton on September 25, 2006
I have a 19 year old that is a bit similar - except that she has a part time job. Since she is not going to school, she needs to be working more. She was not very motivated either. With my help, she is starting a better job now. She may just need some guidance on how to go about getting a job.
I also would not make life to cusshy for her. I mean do not provide her with a car, cell phone, laundry. Things like that. We do too much for our 19 year old. We were beginning to think about taking the car away except for getting to work.
You may also explain to her that your younger child looks up to her and is watching what she does. You really want her to try to set a good example for them too.