Do the brains on young adults function properly?

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-19-2006
Do the brains on young adults function properly?
19
Tue, 01-24-2012 - 10:14am
Sometimes I really wonder. Last night our son called us to ask if he could use "his" money to fly from Denver to Philadelphia for a weekend in March so that he could take his girl friend to a dance at her college. Oh heavens! Let me count the ways that this proposal is crazy. First off, it will cost at least $500, which I explained to him that if he actually had $500 to blow then he ought to contribute it toward the thousands of dollars we are spending. But I must admit that the money isn't even the biggest issue, because if he were doing something really cool like a backpacking trip or a skiing trip I would probably think it was extravagant, but worthwhile. The biggest issue for me is that he will miss E Days at School of Mines. It is a huge event with all sorts of traditions and activities including - a 7.5 mile cart pull to the state Capitol, concerts, fireworks, engineering competitions... It is a 3 day event that all the students look forward to especially the freshman. I feel like his girlfriend must be making him feel badly that he is not around to take her to this dance. And I feel like E days is part of the Mines experience that he should not miss. Plus, galavanting off for a weekend 2,000 miles away is something he can look forward to enjoying after he successfully graduates and is supporting himself. Ugh, I know that he is 18 and I can't stop him, but I hope he makes the right decision. If he doesn't he is going to find out how much we pay for certain things when he has to start paying them himself. Thanks for letting me vent. Robin

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iVillage Member
Registered: 11-28-1999
Tue, 01-24-2012 - 11:21am

Do you have rules about what he can spend "his" money on?

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-19-2006
Tue, 01-24-2012 - 11:41am
Thanks so much for your input. I say his money because he works part time in school and has personal savings from before school. That is why I really feel that if he chooses to do this it is out of my hands. When he called us he claimed that e days was just a bunch of people getting drunk, so he didn't mind if he missed it. He claims he doesn't like to drink, which may or may not be true, but in any case I suspect that he is not crazy about getting drunk as a skunk. Still it sure seems like e days is a huge deal at mines with a lot more going for it than just drinking. He hasn't met a lot of new people since his first weeks of school so I think it is really important for hi from a social perspective as well (especially since his friends have previous bonds that have made it impossible for him to become a full member in their group) I am also sure that the huge student fees we pay finance it. Still, he did feel he needed to ask us which actually puts us in a weird position. I don't feel we can say no, but I do think we carry a lot of leverage given that we are basically subsidizing his life right now. (not that we shouldn't be subsidizing his life). I guess I should feel lucky that this is the biggest problem he is presenting us with and also lucky that he is seeking our input. We will see how it goes.
Avatar for mahopac
iVillage Member
Registered: 07-24-1997
Tue, 01-24-2012 - 11:42am

I believe the latest research shows that the brain doesn't mature until about age 24.

Avatar for sabrtooth
iVillage Member
Registered: 12-03-1999
Tue, 01-24-2012 - 11:44am

Funny you should ask about teen brains...

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-16-2009
Tue, 01-24-2012 - 11:49am
If it is his money he wants to spend, then it is up to him. As music pointed out, it all depends on your agreement. Did you tell him he was not to spend any money on extras or has he have his own money to spend on extra events and entertainment? We paid for our kids' fees and living expenses for first year. They paid their living expenses after that, If they felt they had enough money to take a trip and still pay their living expenses, we were fine with that. Do not assume it is the g/f that is pushing him. This event may be extremely important to her. And, if she is important to him, it is important to him as well. These E Days may be important to you but they may not be to your son. At 18, he is old enough to decide what extracurricular experiences he wants or doesn't want. Stick to the money discussion.
iVillage Member
Registered: 09-19-2006
Tue, 01-24-2012 - 11:55am
Thanks Kelly. We actually did make it very clear - we pay tuition, room and board, cell phone - he pays spending money - which i suppose is why were taken off guard by the request. I have to admit that my initial response was to think that it was extravagant and that he shouldn't be spending money on extravagant things right now even if he has the money. My husband was the one that convinced Me that missing e days was worse and after I did some research on it I began to get sick to my stomach that he would skip it. But you are right, that is not my decision. I guess I ought to thank my lucky stars that this is the biggest thing I am dealing with. LOL.
Avatar for mahopac
iVillage Member
Registered: 07-24-1997
Tue, 01-24-2012 - 12:41pm

I think it's pretty cool that he asked if he could use it.

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-05-2005

No, their brains don't function properly, lol... next question??

I can totally understand why this would drive you insane, but I think that the others are right that you need to think about how you want to set the boundaries for him using "his"money and stick to them. I have one child who is so frugal it worries me and one who consistently seems to spend money in ways that I just don't get at all. To save my own sanity, I've just had to make some rules and stick to them and try not to look at their bank accounts (they are linked to ours because it saves them a lot of money

Avatar for mahopac
iVillage Member
Registered: 07-24-1997
Thu, 01-26-2012 - 10:38am

Theresa, is your frugal child your oldest one by any chance?

My 19yo DS is so frugal that it worries me too.

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-05-2005

Theresa, is your frugal child your oldest one by any chance?

No, unfortunately. My oldest keeps stores like Ulta in business (I can explain to you why a $38 concealer is not only a necessity, it's actually a bargain!!). My dd19 is super frugal. Dd21 broke her iPod last year and we decided to buy both girls new ones for Christmas. Dd19's is five years old and not

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