How much help is too much?

Sandra - posted on 06/13/2009 ( 10 moms have responded )

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My 20 year old son is a junior in college, he was on ROTC scholarship but because of bad decisions he lost his scholarship. My question is how much help is too much help. Do I pay for his tuition and rent or make him be responsible for it all since he is the one who lost the scholarship. His sister is a year younger and got an RA job and has kept her grades up so that she kept her scholarships and we will only have to pay about a quarter of her tuition. I don't want to be too hard on our son, but he needs to grow up and be responsible... Please help.

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Mona - posted on 07/15/2009

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It is so hard to say no. But honestly, how many times can you bail him out? There is a difference between being supported and bailing out. He needs to help himself first. It hurts I know.
I have two boys. They will at some point be someone's husband, father. I need them to be able to take care of themselves so they can someday take care of a family.
http://moremilestones.blogspot.com

Cindi - posted on 07/14/2009

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Who owns the problem? Your son will never accept responsiblity for his actions as long as you shield him from the consequences. You are probably afraid that if you don't help him he won't remain in school, which is understandable, but you can't parent out of guilt. You should give him another chance but you need to do so within limits....you could make a contract with him stating exactly what you will pay for and exactly what you expect in return, making sure that you clearly state what will happen if he fails to follow thru on his end of the contract. Hope this helps. Good luck

Sandra - posted on 07/14/2009

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Well, I have decided that I am willing to pay for tuition and books. That is something that I can do financially. Josh is almost 21 and should otherwise be able to support himself. So, he will be paying for his apartment, food, utilities, insurance, car, etc... If he can't afford it he has the option of coming home and going to a local university. Right now, the plan is to go back to his previous school 2 hours away. He has changed his major to Criminal Justice and seems to have a plan. He is doing some additional job training so he will be making a higher wage so he can support himself while in school. I guess time will tell. He seems to understand just what he threw away with the ROTC scholarship, and is willing to work hard... I'm just not willing to foot the entire bill, but want him to have a good education so he can have a career!

Marilyn - posted on 07/12/2009

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My daughter is 23 & just graduated with an associates in graphic design. We cosigned a loan for her to live in an apt and we paid for her expenses, car insurance, utilities, etc. She is planning to return to school in Oct. when classes begin & finish with her bachelor's (the school has 3 semesters) She is now living home & HATES it. She couldn't stay in her apt. for a number of reasons & now needs to make money to return to school. She misses her friends & being in the sunshine state. She wants to get an apt. near school starting in August. We want her to stay at home where she can work & live rent free to save money. Our plan is for her to return in Sept., get set up in an apt. & get a part time job. Why doesn't she get it?! I'm going over a list of expenses this morning & hope it helps! Any advise...

Susan - posted on 07/06/2009

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My son was told that if he loses his scholarship he comes home to go to school. He knows we mean it. We have told him we will either pay tuition or living expenses. He is the only one of his friends that has maintained his GPA and kept his scholarship. I am proud of him for not getting off track like everyone else.

[deleted account]

I know that there are a lot of adjustments to make in the early college years- lots of things to learn to manage. It is not uncommon for college students to make some mistakes along the way. Which is OK if they learn from their mistakes. If we, as their parents, purpose ourselves to not save them from the consequences of their actions.

There are certain things that make adults ADULTS.

Adults should be paying for their own car insurance.

If a young adult loses her scholarship through mismanagement of time and bad grades, then she is responsible for paying for her education. This happened to my daughter this year. She has had to leave her first choice college and go to the community college so that she can afford tuition this next year. She is also going to be living off campus and will be paying her own rent with the money she earns working.

I hope that she can get herself together in the next year and return to the college she wants to graduate from, but that will be up to her. We love her and encourage her, and should she NEED a home, she will have a roof over her head. But she needs to learn to manage her responsibilities and earn her own way.

That's life...

Sandra - posted on 06/23/2009

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He has been working hard this summer and is saving some money. He and his dad have had some good talks. He is planning ahead to furnish his apartment, is now paying his own car insurance and upkeep, he will be paying all his expenses. We will likely pay his tuition, but I'm still not sure about whether or not I'll pay his rent. I want him to have to work hard, but I don't want him to have to struggle so hard to pay rent and groceries that he doesn't have time to study... will wait and see... thanks for sharing, all input is gratefully accepted.

Darlene - posted on 06/23/2009

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My daughter is 20 and lives out of state. I have struggled with this question a lot because on the one hand I didn't get a heck of a lot of help and I had to figure things out on my own which was rough but I did it. I think it made me much more independent than a lot of the kids I see today. On the other hand I know what it's like to be struggling and just need a little help to get over a hump. She attended school last summer but not since then. However she is planning to go back this fall. She has some problems of her own creating though and I really feel she needs to solve them herself. On the other hand I've been known to put a little money in her account to help her out of a bind. I'm like an oreo.. hard on the outside and a softy on the inside I think! LOL

Her dad just co-signed for her to get into an apartment that I'm pretty sure she really can't afford but all my advice fell on deaf ears. This is bound to be another life lesson but I guess bring it on! The school of hard knocks is a pretty darn good teacher!

Sandra - posted on 06/16/2009

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Thanks Lisa, I only wish that he could get his scholarship back but there is no chance. But maybe he can find new ones relating to his new major. Thanks again!

Lisa - posted on 06/14/2009

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My daughter went through this her sophomore year and then was expecting us to buy her a car despite the fact that we would now have to pay for her room and board plus her books. I was brutally honest with her and told her, no grades,no scholarship, no car. Had to keep saying it as she then brought her grades up but not quite enough to get the scholarship back and then wanted to live off campus - rationalizing that this would save us money (it wouldn't have). She finally got her grades up, got the scholarship back and we got the car. You should help him but he has to understand the limits of your finances.

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