How to Treat Young Adults

This topic is fresh in my head as I read a review copy of Randye Kaye’s Ben Behind His Voices: One Family’s Journey From The Chaos Of Schizophrenia To Hope, and wonder what a parent of an emotionally disturbed adult child to do?

I plan to review this book soon, but in the meantime, I spotted a parenting advice column in the Washington Post, in which two of the letters dealt with adult children. Check it out:

Adult Children

My 23-year-old is working 50 hours a week at a job that doesn’t pay much. He’s over his head in debt. Should I allow him to move back home?

Marguerite Kelly:

Having an adult child move home can be a great experience for both of you, as long as you treat him like an adult–that is, he keeps his room fairly neat and makes his bed in the morning; does his own laundry and changes his own sheets every week and cooks supper for you once or twice a week. If you can’t do that, you’re not ready to help him out….

pre-adult children

How does a parent motivate a young person (age 22-24) to go back to college to be able to earn more money to become self-sufficient?

Marguerite Kelly:

A child between 22 and 24 is old enough to decide whether he’s going back to college or not and he’s old enough to be self-sufficient, too. If you treat an adult like a child he will act like a child, down all the days.

It is sad that so many young people today are not self-sufficient in their 20s, then again, this is hardly an American phenomenon. When I lived in Spain, adults there lived with their parents until they were well into their 30s and even 40s. I know it’s not culturally unacceptable here, nor do I think parents should be their children’s indentured servants indefinitely. But what happens when children can’t find jobs due to the economy, or are so emotionally unstable that they can’t live on their own?

What say you?


Tuesday Morning Open Thread

What’s up?

First, a good Disney rant. Out of nostalgia, my husband recently ordered the kids a few Disney movies from the 1990s: A Little Mermaid, Beauty and the Beast, and Aladdin. I did not know this, but Disney releases its classics every so often to maintain their value, so the movies can be hard to find. We ordered the movies from different vendors online, and so far, have only received A Little Mermaid.

Anyways, after all these years, my husband and I — and now the kids! — love A Little Mermaid. We watched it at least two times this weekend and sang along. Then DH and I got into a discussion on what the hell happened to Disney. They used to make such great movies and if it weren’t for Pixar their animated films would suck. Then the credits of A Little Mermaid started rolling and I realized I did not recognize a single name from the credits. Back then, they had no big-name celebrities doing the acting — just really kick-ass singers, and of course, catchy tunes. This is just an observation…What do you all think?

In case you missed it, Pennsylvania Rep. John Murtha died yesterday after complications from gall bladder surgery, according to the Associated Press. He was 77.

Newsweek ran a good story on how young people are most likely than any other group to be uninsured and most likely to support healthcare reform. If the Dems don’t deliver on their campaign promise to insure them, they may not show up to the polls in November. Also from Newsweek: Anna Quindlen — I love her! — wrote some great food for thought in an article about protesting teabaggers and President Barack Obama. I especially appreciated her succinctness in describing the contradictory nature of the American electorate:

Over and over again some Americans say they want lower taxes and smaller government. Yet somehow, in a recurrent bit of magical thinking, they also expect those things that taxes are used to pay for and that government delivers. The result is contradictory: vote down the school-board budget, then complain that Johnny can’t read.

Another political buzzword, “productivity,” has come to stand for the proposition that you can always do more with less. There’s little evidence that that’s accurate. And it’s hard to believe that even the most zealous tea-party types would shrug philosophically if a bunch of kids died of E. coli because we hadn’t hired enough food inspectors. The old dictum stands: you get what you pay for.

MSN Careers doled out advice on what not to include in a resume.

Here is more on the children who were temporarily in the care of Baptist missionaries now in detention, according to the Associated Press.

Retired Army Gen. Colin Powell, who was responsible for the U.S. military’s “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy, has changed his position, according to the Washington Post. He said that attitudes towards gays and lesbians have changed so they should be allowed to serve openly.

Here is a disturbing story out of India. India has one of the highest suicide rates in the world and about 40 percent are adolescents, according to CNN. The culprit? Academic pressure.

Damn, these are some good genes. Juana Rodriguez, of Havana, Cuba, turned 125 years old today, according to the Agence France-Presse. (The article is in Spanish.) She has six grandchildren, 15 great grandchildren and four great-great grandchildren. Can you imagine??

What else is in the news? What’s up with you?