Wednesday, July 28, 2010

advice you don’t want

Me - You remember (fill-in favorite family name) how we helped you get through college and now you have a professional career?
Adult Kid - Ah, yeah, where you going with this?
Me - Well I thought you could help us with retirement.  Maybe pay our living expenses at a nice retirement community.  You might even help us move.
Adult Kid - Oh sorry, I gotta go there’s another call coming in.

The above conversation is pure fiction, maybe fantasy, but could you imagine having it?

Today post idea came to me after reading a related question over at Mrs. 4444 (after having college kids her number might be reduced).  Check out her post after you finish here.

How about answering this question.   
When are adults responsible for other adults?
Of course, there are exceptions involving disabilities but I’m not asking about that.  I am interested in the normal full functioning adult person with normal capabilities and family relations.

We also need to agree on the age a person becomes an adult.  Many of us know 30 something guys who rarely act as an adult (men vs. women maturity - not a fair question?).

But here in the US, a eighteen year old can be trained to kill for our country.  If war is necessary (please I don’t want to go off on that tangent right now) then we probably agree that we want adults fighting.  For the question posed above lets bump the age up to 21.

I've noticed a shift in our culture over my adult life.  It's expected that things change they always do and will forever change.  Right now, there's some unwritten rule that parents need to cover college expenses that didn't exist when I was college age.  Maybe my parents just fooled me?

Some thoughts of mine:
  • College is not for everyone.  
  • Colleges don't give refunds.  
  • The money involved in these decisions is a serious amount of money.
  • Degrees are granted to all ages.
  • The best investment you can make is in yourself and your future.
  • Learning doesn't always happen in the classroom.
  • The period to earn a degree can stretch over many years.
  • People do better when they have "skin in the game".
  • Some of the most serious students are ones that became unemployed.


Bearmancartoons said...

My parents helped me out with college expenses. From the time I was born any gifts of money I was given or any money earned was split up and half had to go to my college fund.

The helped some more with actual college expenses but I as you said "had skin in the game". So when my friends skipped class, I didn't. I'm paying for this shit, I am getting something out of it, was my theory.

TechnoBabe said...

My older daughter finished four years of college. I didn't co-sign her student loans but she did get a scholarship through my employment with a huge corporation and she got a few other smaller ones too and her dad, my ex, helped her some and I helped her some. But she worked so hard and she did it mostly on her own. She has done well since her graduation. I think if someone asked her if she owed either of her parents anything for her education she would say not really.

Thisstopwilloughby said...

Lots to think about. My son is 17 and entering his last year of high school very soon. We've been thinking about college tuition a lot, lately. Lots of questions, not so many answers.

lisleman said...

Thanks for sharing your theory. Nothing wrong with some fun but the students should not forget why they are there.

lisleman said...

thanks - it sounds like she was a serious student.

lisleman said...

I wish you and your family the best. All situations are different because we are all different. I hope he tries to understand your side of issues too. I know this current economy has hit many families and their plans. I also know families can go through very tough times and still have successful children. Also, very wealthy families can have tragic results with their kids. It's much much more than money.

Jillsy said...

I don't know what's wrong, but I couldn't post a comment on its own, I had to reply to comment to write a comment, so I chose Bear's, since his was the first on the list.

My parents paid for my college education, but I did work during the summers which paid for entertainment, eating out, and clothes I bought during the year. I didn't necessarily feel like I owed my parents back financially, but I did feel I was very lucky that they were able to give that to me and I was very grateful. I wanted to be self-supportive after college and got a job within two months of graduation.

Nowadays, it seems like kids go off on extravagant travels after graduation and take their time finding a job. I know its difficult to find jobs nowadays, but there's always something to do even if it's waiting on tables which does allow them the time to interview as well. I don't understand the philosophy of frivolous travel spending when there's no income in the near future.

lisleman said...

thanks for continuing to try commenting - I've had the comment box not open all the way today and I reloaded the page. BTW since you are registered on DISQUS it does work best if you login before starting your comment.

About your comment - I believe one's attitude makes the biggest difference throughout life. School, work, being a parent, having a the right attitude gives you the right place to start. You wrote extravagant and frivolous so I would agree with you about those types of travel being wrong. However, I think travel can open your mind to important lessons about the world.

Cheeseboy said...

At some point in my life, I went from my grandparents paying for dinner to me paying for their dinner. I think it was at this point where the burden of care had changed hands.

Jillsy said...

I do agree with you about travel experiences. We should all be so lucky. But, when it's on your parent's dime or depleting your own savings right out of school, I don't think it's the right time for doing so. It's not going to teach them anything about supporting themselves. about Disqus. It's not about being signed it since I am obviously signed in now and was on my last comment. I see my name and avatar up there, but the window to write in is so skinny, I can't get into it.

doreen mcgettigan said...

I could not agree more. I got nothing from my parents and did not finish school until I was 46!
Please visit my blog I have an award for you!

Jillsy said...

I see you fixed it!!

lisleman said...

thanks - that's good to hear. If you would like to buy my dinner let me know. I have had my dinner paid for by my kids before and it's a special feeling.

lisleman said...

fixed ?? maybe - "you" as in me - no but I did put in a problem request. I had the same problem (narrow comment box) show up on Unknown Mami.
Then I was trying to reply to your reply and I got some 504 problem no server available show up in the box.
DISQUS is great when it works.

lisleman said...

thanks - this is embarrassing I forgot your blog address

Mrs4444 said...

This is very true-Excellent point.

Mrs4444 said...

In the back (oh, that's funny...see why in a second) of my mind, I keep thinking, "He's going to school to become a chiropractor--That could really come in handy during our old age!!! :)

W.C. Camp said...

Could you have told me this before my kid hit me up 45 grand a year for college? I thought it was part of the deal but now I know better. W.C.C.

Kristina P. said...

I've been having problems commenting here! I just refreshed the page, and I can see the comment box.

I had some help for college from my grandparents, but I didn't expect anything. And I have had a job since I was 16. I have never not had a job in 16 years.

My mom, who is in her 50s, still expects her mom to pay her way. Oh, and her kids too. Somehow, parents should take care of your kids, unless you are her, then both your parents AND your kids should take care of you. I'm not bitter, clearly.

lisleman said...

I getting confused but I think someone might be expecting too many hand-outs here.
sorry about the comment system - I put in a complaint

lisleman said...

Doesn't sound like such a sweet deal to me.
thanks for sharing

lisleman said...

So it's an investment in future bone adjustments (or whatever it's called). I did notice you mentioned some program of 3yrs and another 3 yrs. This reminds me of a relative that was going for a pharmacy degree only to drop it completely after they got into the second part. The problem was the first part didn't give them a degree that they could walk away with. They have to go back and finish more courses to get a biology teaching degree.
I'm rambling on here, but my point is I think it's better to get a usable degree before going on to the advance school in case things change.

Lilly said...

I paid my own way through college and so did my daughter and she she is still paying for it. Here you dont have to pay for your education until the studient starts working and it comes out of their salary. Or, you can get your parents to pay for it as you go. I did help her with living expenses though.

She has always been incredibly independent and I think thats a great thing. Besides she has a great job, gets paid well and can pay off her own educational debt.

Interesting topic.

lisleman said...

thanks for sharing - The US. student also doesn't need to start paying off their student loan until they leave school. One of the problems here is the cost of college and young students spending habits. Also, businesses are quick to take advantage of students (they will take advantage of anyone really).
Your comment triggered an idea I should have put in the post --
Tell your child that you wouldn't want to deprive them of the opportunity to someday say that they worked they own way through school.

I had a tiny bit of help from my parents. My degree was obtained through a deal with USAF.

Nezzy said...

Woohoo, just makes an old chick happy that her brood was old enough to leave the nest a long time ago. As I stated over at Mrs. 4444's I truly believe if a student is responsible for financing their education it's taken more seriously. It's not only their investment but helps to build a more responsible adult than those just gettin' free daddy money. Just sayin......

I also wanted to thank ya for poppin' over with your comments (I covet comments) and hoppin' on my blog. I sure hope ya'll enjoy the ride!

God bless and ya'll have a terrific day!!!

lisleman said...

We have a few things in common - like blogs and Missouri.
We also seem to agree on this paying for college issue.
It's good to be connected with you.

secretagentwoman said...

My grandfather helped me with college expenses and I went on to get a Ph.D. I will be forever grateful to him for that. I will help my own kids with college as much as I am able to, and happily, although with rising college costs some financial aid/tuitions will be needed.

My father refused to pay a penny of my college and my mother took the money my grandfather left to help pay for his great-grandchildren's educations and is blowing her way through it. They were pretty lousy parents in many ways, and I feel no obligation to them in their old age.

lisleman said...

You wrote "helped" and that's much different than some high school grad asking for a full ride to a school they picked because of the parties they heard about. None of our kids gave us any problems like that but it seems that those kids do exist.
It appears that grandparents are more involved in the education funds than I realized. My one remaining grandparent was in no position to help anyone when I went to college.
thanks for sharing - I enjoy the different stories and perspectives.

unknownmami said...

I did not have help with college and I did not expect it. I did grow up with this overwhelming dread that one day it would be my responsibility to support my mother. My mother helped support her mother. Things have turned out differently than expected and my mother does not need me to support her, which is good because I got nothin'.

Mrs4444 said...

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lisleman said...

As you know I'm "in the circle" but why did this comment show up here on this old post?  No problem but it just seemed a little odd.

Jillsy said...

Blogger goes bizerk from time to time as well!

Mrs4444 said...

I see your point and agree with it, but I'm pretty sure he'll just finish
the B.S. while* at* chiro college. And besides, I told him that I think the
stats say that 50% of college freshmen will change their majors and that
that would be fine with us. I'm excited for him; that he has this freedom
to figure it out. Thanks :)

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