Home Stretch: Parenting Kids from 16-21dirt track date -- Saturday, February 22, 2003 -- 06:38:39 PM
I thought this subject deserved its own thread because I have learned so much, and enjoyed reading so much, stories from TPW'ers getting their kids ready to leave home. I've NOT enjoyed the FAFSA stories, but I hope to learn more about the perils of applying for college.
Renamed on 7/24/03.This thread is tagged: teenagers
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Wilma...that is frustrating for both of you. (Not that I blame you!!!) How would you or he feel about a student loan for that?
Also, I would seriously check out the program because that sounds off.
That's a pretty amazing sense of entitlement seeing as he's got no loans AND is going to Germany for his junior year on your dime. I'd be pissed! I don't blame him for wanting to go, but there's no way in hell I'd tolerate that kind of nastiness. You're a better person than I am. I'd have scorched the earth around him with the flames shooting out of my eyeballs. He might be working hard, and that's great, but the deal isn't "I work hard, you pay for whatever the f I want to do, no matter how unreasonable and expensive it may be". Are you also providing a car for him? Because $8000 would also buy a hell of a nice used car.
Actually, most internship programs abroad can be very expensive to participate in. We used to offer a competitive travel grant specifically for students who were wanting to intern abroad. So, if he is onsidering a program abroad, ask them what you get for your money, i.e. do they help with the visa process, do they offer housing or at least have a list of preferred housing options, will someone meet him at the airport/train station, etc. You don't want him just dropped in the middle of a country with no language skills. He can also do an internship in Germany in conjunction with his studies abroad. Since he is already going overseas, I would strongly urge him to look into that, rather than going to China in the summer. Many of the study abroad programs will have some information on how to combine both study and internships.
We try to vet the Chinese internships very closely. It is very difficult to get into China and can be equally difficult to get out if the internship doesn't pan out the way the student had hoped.
A very good internship organization for these sorts of things, especially engineering (and computer science can sometimes come under this heading) is International Cooperative Education out of Menlo Park, CA (ICE Menlo). We have worked with them for years and Gunter and his wife travel the world looking for internship for kids, many of them are paid internships. They do have fees of a couple thousand dollars, but they vet their companies very carefully, many of their internships are paid, they do offer help in finding housing and often have someone meeting the student upon arrival.
Thanks ciao- I did some investigating and after the initial shock- it's not badly priced- they provide housing, visa assitance, some language training, some trips, pick up at airport, transportation to work site, breakdast each day. It's just too much money- or more than I am willing to spend. I thought about bringing up a student loan option- but I figure he can figure that out himself.
I completely understand. You want to give them every chance to excel. But at the same time, he's old enough to understand and to say he understands. You can't always get what you want. But he's getting what he needs.
I would still encourage looking into the joint study abroad/internship idea. If there are fees at all, they will be significantly less (if there is any charge at all) since he is already over there. He can probably get info on this from the EAP at his home university.
Yes- I think there is an opputunity for an internship in Germany. He is getting to be near fluent in German and once he is there for a while, I'm sure he will be fluent.Or he can look into an internship after he finishes his junior year there. But it makes no sense to run off to China and then run off to Germany- esp if it's going to cost me a bunch of extra money. Because I want to go to Germany (we have been saving money for us to take a trip while he is there and I want to go on a warm weather vacation and damn it, I'm 52 so I get to spend my money on that.Lori as for the car, our kids don't have one. We let my duaghter take one of our two cars to college her senior year- it was a small inconvenience for us- but made it easier for her to get around to job interviews and just nicer overall. Son we have told if the car is still alive he can take it for his senior year. That's what you get.
ciao- thanks for you input. I liked the site very much. There is a meeting he is going to next week with all the details on the program in Germany. An internship with Seimans had been brought up earlier- but I don't know if that was definate and a certain someone is in a very huffy mood if we ask him questions.
Siemans is a very good company to internship for. Also I don't know what he already has in place, but you may suggest he take a look at this DAAD RISE (Research Internships in Science and Engineering)
In nearly the same breath as our hearts swelled for J., we are profoundly disappointed by our son A.'s attitude of entitlement. He is here in town at the state's flagship university, living on campus for now (not for next year since space is so limited and he "missed" the opportunity to apply to be on campus next year). It's very cheap and that's about right because he isn't very motivated to excel. Grades are ok, but he hasn't been challenged yet.
Our deal with him is that he must handle his personal expenses. He has spent his graduation gift funds and the meager amount he made last summer. The meal plan is inadequate in his eyes, picky eater that he is, and he really doesn't want to live at home for the summer since he doesn't want to have to have a curfew. My husband is pissed and seeing red. I just figure this is a natural consequence. Funds are finite, and life goes on.
DH had lunch with him today and is too angry to speak. I'll have lunch with him tomorrow but I doubt he'll make me as angry. I figure this is the college-age equivalent to a tantrum. Expected for the developmental age but limited by time. I'll just let the money fade away....
I have nothing to add but deep sympathy for parents on the receiving end of entitlement. I dislike it intensely coming from my nine-year-old, but it's an ugly, selfish emotion at any age.
True, but it will pass, depending on how you handle it. It sounds to me as if backing off might be a good idea. Don't get sucked in to arguing about it. You put your cards on the table, this is what we have to offer, and you back off. There's no reason why a college student can't work over the summer to earn money for the year. There's no reason at all to feel guilty for not footing the bill for your son to go to China *especially* since he's going to Germany.
Marsie, can you be more flexible about a curfew?
It does pass, I promise you. Stand firm! Our daughter was nasty about it too for a while, but time and maturity happened. We just had a lovely visit with her over the weekend, and my husband pointed out sotto voce how much more mature and welcoming and, well, grateful, she is. Before it was rude, selfish teenager behavior -- now she is more balanced and comfortable and cognizant of her blessings. She posted on facebook after the visit, "yay for a home-cooked meal!" and I had to laugh. Because she never would have appreciated that before.
One of the benefits of having to be so careful financially is my kids had lower expectations :(.
Trevor did get to spend 6 weeks in London, but his dad foot the bill for that.
We paid for our daughter to go to China (for grad school credit, so O/T for this thread) and though it was expensive, it resulted in a phenomenal master's project and thesis, plus a very funny and illuminating personal slideshow project afterwards.
But earlier we'd paid for prep schools and all of her college board and tuition, so she basically graduated without debt. There were other very stressful issues related to her late teen years, so I was still the Evil Queen Bitch from Hell at that point, but the issues were never about entitlement. She had babysitting jobs starting at eleven and worked in a retail store at 15, and then an ice cream shop weeknights during high school after practice, and then held summer jobs at a golf course through college, so she knew the value of earning money. And she expressed thanks that we'd left her debt free after college.
However, it wasn't until she was married that she really recognized the value of what we'd done for her, when she saw the struggle her husband had to pay off his college loans. Then, she was even more appreciative.
So, you do what you can, and sort out what's reasonable and what's not and what you can realistically do -and what you want to do or don't want to do for them. Even if the youngster seems ungrateful or entitled now, most likely that will change as they mature. Especially if they don't get everything they want.
There are things they can achieve for themselves once they are earning the money to do them. He can go to China someday. He'll simply have to save and plan for it.
I'm kind of worried about this scenario in the future for my daughter, who is already inclined to feel over-entitled. I hope I can be strong and stick with firmly saying NO.