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lauraw4321

Letting your kid fail

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I don't think of myself as "managing" my kids while they are in college.

I think of it as facilitating them in reaching their goals. That old chestnut of "working myself out of a job." 

I don't have an arbitrary cut-off that I decided years ago that I'd be "done" by the end of elementary school or the end of middle school or the end of high school. I AM doing what I am doing so they will be independent, self-sufficient, etc. The end point is in flux. And even when they DO get to that point, it doesn't mean I won't run some random errands for them or drop off food or any little task they might need to help them out if they ask.

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I don't understand why some think continuing to help our college aged dc when they need it means we have no time for ourselves.

Dh and I have been taking a lot of time for ourselves for about two years now even though youngest is only a senior. Both dc have able to stay home alone (when ds is here) and take care of themselves, the house, and the animals. They don't need us 24/7. I don't think any of us discussing helping out our college kids are on the phone with them all day or every day. 

Dh and I are already planning for next year when both dc will be at college. We've planned several trips and dh is going to let his company pay for him to go back to school. Continuing to help our college aged dc when they need it doesn't really interfere with anything. It's what they need so we do it but little by little they are taking on more and more. I have zero doubt by the time they are done with college they will be just fine on their own. 

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I think OP's basic position is what we all experienced before we had kids.  We knew everything about how to parent, and we would never ....  OP is very confident she knows how things will be if her kid wants to be in college -- sink or swim buddy!  tens of thousands of dollars in debt for that privilege!

Time will tell.  It gets us all.

FWIW, my dd chose to go to our local university because she knew she might need help.  Not only is that saving us $40,000, we are also able to help.  I assist her with her to-do list.  OP thinks that makes me her secretary and that I am "doing college" all over again.  Not so.  I also do her laundry, bad parent that I am.  And she is making the highest grades right now in her very tough Anatomy class (I am not doing any of her work, in case OP that is your thought.  Bones and gunk, ew.).  Next semester, or maybe next year, she will be able to manage her to do list all on her own.  It's called modeling and learning.  It's a good thing, and she needed it, and she had the foresight to know that she would which is why she went to school locally.  YMMV when you get there.

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9 minutes ago, perkybunch said:

I think OP's basic position is what we all experienced before we had kids.  We knew everything about how to parent, and we would never ....  OP is very confident she knows how things will be if her kid wants to be in college -- sink or swim buddy!  tens of thousands of dollars in debt for that privilege!

Time will tell.  It gets us all.

FWIW, my dd chose to go to our local university because she knew she might need help.  Not only is that saving us $40,000, we are also able to help.  I assist her with her to-do list.  OP thinks that makes me her secretary and that I am "doing college" all over again.  Not so.  I also do her laundry, bad parent that I am.  And she is making the highest grades right now in her very tough Anatomy class (I am not doing any of her work, in case OP that is your thought.  Bones and gunk, ew.).  Next semester, or maybe next year, she will be able to manage her to do list all on her own.  It's called modeling and learning.  It's a good thing, and she needed it, and she had the foresight to know that she would which is why she went to school locally.  YMMV when you get there.

Dude. I never said parents who scaffold in college are bad parents, did I? Please show me if I did because that isn’t true. I said, sincerely, that I admire Ruth in NZ. 

What I did say is that I know myself enough to know that I’m not going to be willing to continue scaffolding in college (with the caveat that of course I could change my mind). I know that those who scaffold aren’t doing the underlying work. I know that because I scaffold daily for this kid (and her dad - and that is a lifetime gig). I’m not judging you. I’m saying what I am not willing to do. 

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10 minutes ago, Pen said:

@lauraw4321 how did your daughter’s project go? 

 

I promise to update with her grade when we get it. She had a substitute, so it will probably be next week. 

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56 minutes ago, lauraw4321 said:

I promise to update with her grade when we get it. She had a substitute, so it will probably be next week. 

 

How about the how to finish things without losing sleep discussion?

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2 hours ago, lauraw4321 said:

I know that because I scaffold daily for this kid (and her dad - and that is a lifetime gig). I’m not judging you. I’m saying what I am not willing to do. 

I'm curious why you are willing to provide lifelong scaffolding and support to a grown adult, while refusing the same support to a child at 19?

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I agree that time will tell how this all comes out.

Ultimately we do what people need us to do, to the extent we can do it.

I was tongue in cheek when I mentioned the tea sipping.  Real life is I will probably work until I die anyway.  😛

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There are so many adults who need help with EF. For the last few years I've been volunteering to help families through the adoption process because I'm familiar with the country we adopted from. There are paid employees of agencies who are technically supposed to be doing this, but they don't provide that level of support. So I answer questions about how to do forms, what to do next, what you should do in the meantime. I cheerlead each success, and I ask how a document is going when I know it has been longer than it should take. 

I have my own constellation of EF issues, ADHD, and anxiety. Plus a million kids. So I know how hard it can be to get things organized in your head and done in a timely fashion. I've had to drag people across the finish line to get their paperwork done when they were completely overwhelmed and asked for me to help. I've done it because I love it. I love seeing kids who would have aged out in institutions join a family. These families have become close friends.

But I have had to step away because I can't take it anymore. A series of families asked for help, took up a lot of valuable time for me to help them, ignored what I said, then complained to the world that no one had ever informed them of any of the things I had spent hours going over with them. It moved far past people struggling with EF into people actually being selfish and inconsiderate.

That's one of the biggest things we focus on for my own kids with EF and a couple relatives who we have helped launch into adulthood. It's okay to need help. It's okay to ask for help. It's okay to have to ridiculously micromanage yourself to provide the structure you need to get things done. (I had 25 daily alarms on my phone the last time we changed our kids' medication and feeding schedule.) People might already see that as you being X, Y and Z. So make sure you aren't actually being those things in addition to working through your weak areas. Emphasizing again that it's better to ask for help than to fail. It's okay to be the hot mess mom here and there. It's not okay if these things are having a major impact on your life and you won't do anything to help yourself.

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2 hours ago, perkybunch said:

I think OP's basic position is what we all experienced before we had kids.  We knew everything about how to parent, and we would never ....  OP is very confident she knows how things will be if her kid wants to be in college -- sink or swim buddy!  tens of thousands of dollars in debt for that privilege!

Time will tell.  It gets us all.

FWIW, my dd chose to go to our local university because she knew she might need help.  Not only is that saving us $40,000, we are also able to help.  I assist her with her to-do list.  OP thinks that makes me her secretary and that I am "doing college" all over again.  Not so.  I also do her laundry, bad parent that I am.  And she is making the highest grades right now in her very tough Anatomy class (I am not doing any of her work, in case OP that is your thought.  Bones and gunk, ew.).  Next semester, or maybe next year, she will be able to manage her to do list all on her own.  It's called modeling and learning.  It's a good thing, and she needed it, and she had the foresight to know that she would which is why she went to school locally.  YMMV when you get there.

Yes!! The boldest is exactly what I was coming to say.  It’s very (x1000) easy to say what you will or won’t do when your kid is 5 or 10 or even 15.    But if you don’t have a kid who’s an adult and struggling with EF issues or LDs (or absolutely any and everything else under the sun, tbh) you really have no idea.   I don’t say that in a condescending way, trust me.   There were so many instances of me saying, “I will never...” as ds18 was growing up.   I think if you want to ensure that you will, in fact, do something as a parent, just say emphatically how you will never do that (whatever “that” is) as that kid is growing up.... Life has a way of kicking us in the ass when we’re not expecting it.   And I’ve got bruises to prove it.   😱

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Trying to work with my kids on a scout project that is supposedly designed for their age group ... either I'm doing something very wrong, or the writer of that program had astonishingly capable daughters.  😛  The absolute hardest thing is to not do what the kid is supposed to be doing, even though it will take her 20x as long to do it half as well.  😛  But at least this is scouts, where if it isn't perfect, it simply isn't perfect.  You debrief, learn, and move on.  It doesn't go on your transcript or whatever.

Depending on the school, it may be relatively low-cost to let kids learn "the hard way" in the early grades, or it may have bigger repercussions.  In my kids' school, it is very public who gets good & not-so-good grades, starting in 1st grade. That, coupled with expectations that are not always age-appropriate, make it hard to be hands off when the kid is not naturally great at everything.  I remember in the 2nd grade, my kids had to write a research paper on a famous person, complete with illustrations and a bibliography.  (They had to use at least 2 books and 2 internet sources.)  Do you think I helped them plan and execute that?  Yes I did.

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6 minutes ago, Thatboyofmine said:

I think if you want to ensure that you will, in fact, do something as a parent, just say emphatically how you will never do that (whatever “that” is) as that kid is growing up.... Life has a way of kicking us in the ass when we’re not expecting it.   And I’ve got bruises to prove it.   😱

So true.  That and "My kid would never ...."

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39 minutes ago, Corraleno said:

I'm curious why you are willing to provide lifelong scaffolding and support to a grown adult, while refusing the same support to a child at 19?

Because, our lives and finances are combined for life. So I scaffold for items that would significantly affect me and/our finances. 

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1 hour ago, Pen said:

 

How about the how to finish things without losing sleep discussion?

Didn’t have the opportunity yet. 

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2 hours ago, lauraw4321 said:

Dude. I never said parents who scaffold in college are bad parents, did I? Please show me if I did because that isn’t true. I said, sincerely, that I admire Ruth in NZ. 

What I did say is that I know myself enough to know that I’m not going to be willing to continue scaffolding in college (with the caveat that of course I could change my mind). I know that those who scaffold aren’t doing the underlying work. I know that because I scaffold daily for this kid (and her dad - and that is a lifetime gig). I’m not judging you. I’m saying what I am not willing to do. 

That's fine.  You do you.  That is a very easy thing to say when your oldest is 11.  

 Scaffolding for my college student means setting up stuff like ortho visits, flu shots, haircuts, etc when he visits.  Using amazon prime when he doesn't have enough warm socks to walk to class or enough notebooks or runs out of tide pods.  This teen/young adult phase does seem different than I imagined.  But it has freed my kid up to be more successful academically.    I think graduation rates are up in some cases because of both financial but also logistical and emotional support of young adults by parents.  My husband is highly successful and has a master's but I still help him in some ways.  We help people we love.  

Not everyone has to go to college.  Not every parent want that for their kid nor is it a fit for every kid.  But there's no expiration off date for parenting or for caring about your child.  I do think when you have a middle school age kid who is not successful in their current environment, that child either needs a new environment or appropriate supports.  I would not let a kid repeatedly "fail".  Especially a kid going into puberty who already might be having self esteem issues and self doubt.

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Listen, it’s fine to say you schedule haircuts for your college kid when they come home but please don’t patronize those of us who would say, “Wow, you need a hair cut.” While observing the shaggy kid and shaking our head. I think it’s perfectly ok for my kid to get a B or C while they learn to set a phone reminder and schedule their own personal maintenance. These are different priorities, not an indication of a lack of understanding. Nothing about my personal boundaries is going to change in the next three years.

Edited by Sneezyone
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3 hours ago, SKL said:

I want to have a day to look forward to waking up when I want to, sipping tea, listening to soft classical music, and reading an inspirational book until I feel like doing my yoga.

You guys with all this reality are scaring me. 

Helping DS stay organized this year (as a sophomore) takes maybe an hour or two per week, max — and some of that time is just chatting or venting or whatever. First semester of freshman year took a lot more time because he was 2400 miles from home, trying to juggle 5 really-time intensive classes with 20-60 hrs/wk in a varsity sport (and a new coach who was totally disorganized and would often send out schedule changes the night before), plus figure out the complicated course management software, plus find his way around a huge campus, plus learn multiple new apps and software programs that were required for different courses, plus he caught every cold and flu bug (including a particularly nasty stomach flu) that went through his dorm. From what I read on the parent FB group for his school, there were plenty of NT kids who were completely overwhelmed and asking for help their first semester, too.

Every semester, as things that were once new and overwhelming become familiar and routine, he needs less and less support. I imagine by senior year my role will be an occasional reminder like "don't forget to submit your graduation paperwork by X date and order your cap & gown..."

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On 11/13/2019 at 12:27 AM, lauraw4321 said:

We will just have to disagree, then. I won’t be scaffolding in college. Or when she’s in the workforce. 

Her father has severe ADHD and this is something he’s very firm about from his own experiences as well. 

She has refused my offers to help her with planning. Because she thinks there’s no problem. Maybe she’s right? We’ll see how her grade ends up. 

Well, my husband doesn’t have EF issues and he has an administrative assistant to “scaffold” him. He has so much going on that someone else manages his schedule and his travel arrangements for him. There is absolute nothing wrong with someone helping keep another person organized and on task. 

My son does have ADHD - he will likely always need help. At this stage in his work life, no one is going to pay someone else to help him, so I help him keep his schedule straight. If he had enough money he could hire a professional ADHD coach to help him, but he doesn’t, so I’m the coach. 

No amount of “letting him fail” helped him understand the flow of time, break down large tasks into smaller ones and plan ahead for needed supplies, etc. when he was on school. No amount of work repercussions is going to help now. So - his work schedule and social plans go on a master calendar and we sit down on a regular basis to set alarms on his phone for various things. I don’t do his work for him, but I do provide support necessary so that he can work. 

Really, if your daughter still needs help when she’s older, what is the benefit to her or anyone else for denying her the help she needs? Why make up your mind now what you will & won’t do? Refusing her help  now and in the future isn’t going to change anything and it could make things far worse for her in both the short and long term. She isn’t doing this on purpose - so see if there are ways you can help her or get the school to help her with an IEP. If she doesn’t get the help she needs, college could be a moot point. ADHD is really serious business as far as how it impacts life. 

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30 minutes ago, SKL said:

Trying to work with my kids on a scout project that is supposedly designed for their age group ... either I'm doing something very wrong, or the writer of that program had astonishingly capable daughters.  😛  The absolute hardest thing is to not do what the kid is supposed to be doing, even though it will take her 20x as long to do it half as well.  😛  But at least this is scouts, where if it isn't perfect, it simply isn't perfect.  You debrief, learn, and move on.  It doesn't go on your transcript or whatever.

Depending on the school, it may be relatively low-cost to let kids learn "the hard way" in the early grades, or it may have bigger repercussions.  In my kids' school, it is very public who gets good & not-so-good grades, starting in 1st grade. That, coupled with expectations that are not always age-appropriate, make it hard to be hands off when the kid is not naturally great at everything.  I remember in the 2nd grade, my kids had to write a research paper on a famous person, complete with illustrations and a bibliography.  (They had to use at least 2 books and 2 internet sources.)  Do you think I helped them plan and execute that?  Yes I did.

2dd was spending 2+ hours on math homework every night when she was in 9th grade. (and there were five more classes!) I was getting fed up, and called the teacher demanding to know just how much time kids were expected to spend on homework.  the teacher was insisting if dd was struggling that much, she was in the wrong class, and should be transferred to an easier class . . . . . . (turned out, 2dd had the HIGHEST GRADE in the class.  it's not the class lady. . . . .  ).  the next month that teacher took an "emergency" leave.  . . . scuttlebutt was she transferred back to the middle school to teach an easier class.  it took months for the class to get a permanent teacher and caught up to where they were supposed to be.

though it happens in college too.  1ds had an engineering? class like that.  it was supposed to be an introductory, mandatory, class to that particular subject - but that's not what was being taught.  even the grad student who was in the class - kept saying, that's not right that's not right - and that it was very advanced material that he (in a doctoral program) had barely scratched the surface about . . . (it was a new prof.)  when more than half the class is looking at failing - it's not the students.  the Srs were supposed to have him for a mandatory class the next quarter.  they went enmasse to the head of the dept demanding he not teach their class.  not sure what his fate was (re: if he was still employed when all was said and done), but I know the dean of the school did step in, and yanked him back - hard . . .  

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37 minutes ago, lauraw4321 said:

Because, our lives and finances are combined for life. So I scaffold for items that would significantly affect me and/our finances. 

Are you saying that your willingness to help a loved one with EF issues is dependent on whether it benefits you financially?  

 

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4 minutes ago, Corraleno said:

Are you saying that your willingness to help a loved one with EF issues is dependent on whether it benefits you financially?  

 

I don’t think she was saying that at all - she was just answering a question..

Anne

 

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I could drone on and on about my kid's EF asynchonicities and the complexity of his double degree program blah blah blah.  But frankly parenting just isn't one size fits all.  Some kids are chomping at the bit doing quite a bit of adulting on their own in high school and launch fully and cleanly.  Some kids take every day to their late 20's to form work on that brain maturation.  And there is everything in between.  When you have a kid with a known difference, sometimes you chose as a parent to parent that child differently.  Maybe not every parent has the bandwidth to make the same choices.  I assume in the vast majority of cases, people are making the best choices for their situation given their bandwidth.  

I will say in an age where financial aid and potential merit money for college is limited to 4 years while parents might be expected to produce money for tuition, there is a lot of pressure for traditional enrolling college students not to flounder in college.  And it's not about making a B or C.  I really don't care about that type of minutiae.  We intentionally chose a college where if the kid were there an extra year, it would really be ok.  It's a lot easier to be completely hands off if you aren't paying tuition or if your kid is in an extremely affordable live at home situation.  I actually think a lot about that system is broken.  Even my kid getting a flu shot feels critical while he's a full time student or I would be happy to let that go.  But dropping a semester with a withdrawal would be like throwing thousands down the drain.  

I also can admit in my case there is a fine line between the necessary scaffolding and mothering and what my love language is and the inane logistics of just having 2 vehicles when the kid is in town (which is rarely and will continue to be - only once other than holidays).  I have sent him care packages with treats and cards from our cats.  Is that necessary?  No.  Will I do it because it's fun for me and I know it makes his day?  Yes.  LOL.  

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1 hour ago, Anne said:

I don’t think she was saying that at all - she was just answering a question..

Anne

 

She said the reason she's willing to help her DH but not her daughter is because there is a personal and financial benefit to helping him (even if it's in the sense that not helping would be financially and personally detrimental). So the corollary to that would seem to be that since the child's success or failure has no personal cost or benefit to her, she would be unwilling to help. That is such a foreign concept to me I was trying to figure out if that's really how she sees it.

It also raises the question of whether someone with that approach would be willing to help with things like financial aid or scholarship applications and deadlines, since those do have the potential to impact the parent financially. Or if the attitude would still be "Sink or swim, if you lose your scholarship because you missed some deadlines or didn't keep a high enough GPA, tough luck, guess you need to drop out and go to work for a while."

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1 hour ago, Corraleno said:

She said the reason she's willing to help her DH but not her daughter is because there is a personal and financial benefit to helping him (even if it's in the sense that not helping would be financially and personally detrimental). So the corollary to that would seem to be that since the child's success or failure has no personal cost or benefit to her, she would be unwilling to help. That is such a foreign concept to me I was trying to figure out if that's really how she sees it.

It also raises the question of whether someone with that approach would be willing to help with things like financial aid or scholarship applications and deadlines, since those do have the potential to impact the parent financially. Or if the attitude would still be "Sink or swim, if you lose your scholarship because you missed some deadlines or didn't keep a high enough GPA, tough luck, guess you need to drop out and go to work for a while."

I think she's saying that for practical reasons she can't just let her husband fail.  Also, one would surmise that whatever he didn't figure out "the hard way" through young adulthood isn't likely to be learned organically at this point.

I don't think it's comparable.  Kids leave the nest, make their own mistakes, and figure out their own way.  That isn't the goal with husbands.  Also, I assume her dh does some things for her so it's mutual in some way.

Kids may figure out their own way sooner or later.  The OP probably thinks college age kids are really old compared to her dd11.  But 7 years from now, age 18 is going to seem a lot younger, I'm guessing.

Well, I do know people who didn't help their kids with college.  Most such kids simply did not go to college.  Others figured it out or quit.

Personally, I lived in my parents' house until I was 20.  I didn't have help with college or jobs per se, but living with my parents probably helped in the overall picture.  As did being able to bounce things off my parents.  "Can you believe this prof expects XYZ?"  "Why don't you ____?"  "If I were you I would ____."  "Are you sure you have time to ___ if your professor wants XYZ done in the morning?"  I still made tons of mistakes and lived with them.  As for living skills ... I had tons of household chores and childcare responsibilities (2 siblings were much younger).  I came from the days when girls learned all that stuff long before they went to college.  Or maybe I just didn't have that particular kind of EF issue.

And now I think I need to shut up, as the mother of a girl who just tried to microwave dry noodles without adding the water ... again.  😛

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2 hours ago, FuzzyCatz said:

I could drone on and on about my kid's EF asynchonicities and the complexity of his double degree program blah blah blah.  But frankly parenting just isn't one size fits all.  Some kids are chomping at the bit doing quite a bit of adulting on their own in high school and launch fully and cleanly Some kids take every day to their late 20's to form work on that brain maturation.  And there is everything in between. 

 

🔔🔔 we have a winner

and then there is just something about being lectured by someone with whose oldest is younger than my fourth about what I'm doing wrong as a parent . . . . . .  honey buns - you really don't want to go there. methinks she doth protest too much.

 

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20 minutes ago, SKL said:

I think she's saying that for practical reasons she can't just let her husband fail.  Also, one would surmise that whatever he didn't figure out "the hard way" through young adulthood isn't likely to be learned organically at this point.

I don't think it's comparable.  Kids leave the nest, make their own mistakes, and figure out their own way.  That isn't the goal with husbands.  Also, I assume her dh does some things for her so it's mutual in some way.

Well if her DH reciprocates in some way, that's just another way in which she benefits from helping him. I mean, when asked why she provides him with the same support she would deny her daughter, she didn't say "because I love him unconditionally and want him to be successful." She said she helps because not helping would cause personal and financial problems for her. Whereas denying help to her daughter will presumably only cause personal and financial problems for the child. (Hopefully when the OP and her husband are in their 70s and looking for logistical support, their DD will help because she loves them and wants them to be happy rather than asking how it will benefit her.)

She's mentioned that her husband is the one who is most adamant that the daughter not be given support — despite the fact that he is a grown man who still relies on exactly the kind of support he would deny a teenager. Maybe they are both under the illusion that people with ADHD learn best by failure rather than by gradual release of supports as they're ready. Lots of people who have already BTDT with older kids are trying to explain that that is generally not how ADHD works, and when these kids are thrown in the deep end without a life jacket, a lot of them will in fact sink.

DS has a good friend who just lost a full ride scholarship after a lot of little mistakes eventually snowballed. He's a good kid who was trying hard but it was a case of "not knowing what you don't know" and not knowing where to go or who to ask.  When he told his parents, they kicked him out and withdrew all financial support. Now he's living with friends near the university, working a minimum wage job, and will probably never finish his degree. That's a hell of a harsh lesson. ☹️

 

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EF deficits go with so many other things- people think that it is part and parcel of what is more easily understood- like ADHD or dyslexia or any other sort of LD. But when you see those deficits on their own- if you have never experienced it yourself it can be bewildering.

I know a couple who are extremely intelligent, funny, excellent at games, musical and have kids with assorted levels of genius and LDs. I believe they both suffer from EF problems- because they cannot seem to figure out how to pay bills on time, sign up for events in a timely manner, remember to pay speeding tickets (resulting in a 6 month license suspension for the mom when the kids were under 10), etc. They are mid- forties and not one bit better at it in the last ten years I have known them, despite paying fortunes in late fees, missing out on opportunities, bouncing checks etc.

They need a secretary/housekeeper. 

I have a dyslexic daughter who could use a secretary. She had a grandfather who did have secretary and she ran his work life with extreme efficiency, allowing him to get on with the work at hand.

Now that everything is convenient and "easy" to do, many people who would have had secretarial help in the past are on their own. 

My kids are bullheaded independent (with varying levels of challenges) and rarely ask for help- but when they do- you bet I help. Just like I would help my husband or my best friend. 

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19 minutes ago, MysteryJen said:

EF deficits go with so many other things- people think that it is part and parcel of what is more easily understood- like ADHD or dyslexia or any other sort of LD. But when you see those deficits on their own- if you have never experienced it yourself it can be bewildering.

I know a couple who are extremely intelligent, funny, excellent at games, musical and have kids with assorted levels of genius and LDs. I believe they both suffer from EF problems- because they cannot seem to figure out how to pay bills on time, sign up for events in a timely manner, remember to pay speeding tickets (resulting in a 6 month license suspension for the mom when the kids were under 10), etc. They are mid- forties and not one bit better at it in the last ten years I have known them, despite paying fortunes in late fees, missing out on opportunities, bouncing checks etc.

They need a secretary/housekeeper. 

I have a dyslexic daughter who could use a secretary. She had a grandfather who did have secretary and she ran his work life with extreme efficiency, allowing him to get on with the work at hand.

Now that everything is convenient and "easy" to do, many people who would have had secretarial help in the past are on their own. 

 

I honestly could cry right now because this sums up my dad. He's been "The Absent Minded Professor" his entire life.  EF issues for miles and miles. He did so much better when he was married to my stepmother and working, because then he had people to manage everything for him.  My dad is highly intelligent but utterly lost without a secretary and the household management of a wife. 

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I do not understand why this thread went in the direction it did.  It was a venting thread.  I get it.  I kind of agree with her, except I think 6th grade is a little young for the tough love.  But high school is completely appropriate.  I have not and will not help my kids in college and they have thanked me several times for not being that helicopter parent.  My youngest is a senior this year and we were just laughing because she is taking College Algebra dual credit.  She put off homework and was doing 3 or 4 lessons ALL DAY yesterday.  I knew that was what was going on.  I didn't say anything until today and laughing asked if she got her math done.  She laughed and confessed and said she would never do that again...  

Now I do not have EF kids.  Bless those of you that do.  I couldn't do what you are doing.  I am counting the months until I am done.  I am more than weary.  I have enough trouble keeping up with me.  Plus, I am extremely organized and 2 of my kids protest they work better NOT being organized.  Yeah,  that worked well yesterday, didn't it.  They just need to learn on their own.  

I don't have an issue with those of you that do it differently.  Please, just don't judge those of us that do it differently.  Once they are adulte, they are adults in my view.  

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1 hour ago, seekinghim45 said:

Now I do not have EF kids.  Bless those of you that do.  I couldn't do what you are doing.  I am counting the months until I am done.  I am more than weary.  I have enough trouble keeping up with me.  Plus, I am extremely organized and 2 of my kids protest they work better NOT being organized.  Yeah,  that worked well yesterday, didn't it.  They just need to learn on their own.  

I don't have an issue with those of you that do it differently.  Please, just don't judge those of us that do it differently.  Once they are adulte, they are adults in my view.  

Parents who treat their adult NT kids like NT adults are not an issue — and the OP is not in that category.

The issue is parents of NT kids, or very young non-NT kids, stating what is and isn't an acceptable or appropriate level of support for older non-NT kids, especially when their ideas of what's "appropriate" are modeled on what some (not even all) NT kids are capable of at a rather arbitrary age. Even worse is the implication that if parents of non-NT kids just let them crash and burn, then they'll figure out how to solve their brain issues on their own so they can function like NT adults. 

There's no magical transformation that happens even to an NT kid on their 18th birthday, or on the day they first step foot on a college campus. If they needed help the month before those dates, they will likely still need help the month after. Holding back an extremely bright kid with EF issues on the grounds that they should not be allowed to move forward in life until they can act sufficiently NT is, in the experience of some of us who have BTDT,  unfair to people who really can't help the fact that their brains are wired differently. 

Edited by Corraleno
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Thanks, Seeking. Every time I dabble in the board I am painted some kind of evil Machiavellian mastermind. I repeatedly said I may change my mind. I never lectured anyone (again, feel free to quote if I’m wrong). I am not judging you for helping your kids in this way. I’m saying I won’t because if I didn’t set a boundary somewhere, I could easily spend the rest of my life filling the role of secretary for my spouse, mother, aunt, cousin, co-workers, etc.  

My DH had zero scaffolding. He didn’t even have medication until college. The fact he graduated is a miracle. He feels strongly that being forced to find internal motivation was key to his current abilities. Who am I to argue? I don’t have ADHD  

I scaffold (read, nag) DH when the issue at stake is something like my family's Health insurance. Or an appointment I need him to handle for the kids because I have an unavoidable conflict. If it affects only him, I do not scaffold. If he lost his job, because of his EF deficits we would be fine because I don’t depend on him. It would be painful in the short term, but ultimately fine. I could easily spend my entire life working on other people’s goals and priorities. I won’t. 

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2 minutes ago, lauraw4321 said:

Thanks, Seeking. Every time I dabble in the board I am painted some kind of evil Machiavellian mastermind. I repeatedly said I may change my mind. I never lectured anyone (again, feel free to quote if I’m wrong). I am not judging you for helping your kids in this way. I’m saying I won’t because if I didn’t set a boundary somewhere, I could easily spend the rest of my life filling the role of secretary for my spouse, mother, aunt, cousin, co-workers, etc.  

My DH had zero scaffolding. He didn’t even have medication until college. The fact he graduated is a miracle. He feels strongly that being forced to find internal motivation was key to his current abilities. Who am I to argue? I don’t have ADHD  

I scaffold (read, nag) DH when the issue at stake is something like my family's Health insurance. Or an appointment I need him to handle for the kids because I have an unavoidable conflict. If it affects only him, I do not scaffold. If he lost his job, because of his EF deficits we would be fine because I don’t depend on him. It would be painful in the short term, but ultimately fine. I could easily spend my entire life working on other people’s goals and priorities. I won’t. 

 Good for you for setting boundaries.    I feel ya!  You are right.  You just wanted to vent.  

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I have to admit, this thread even makes me laugh a little.  I feel like most of what is being discussed here is pretty basic level supports.  Mostly checking in to make sure things are ok.  My kid was texting non-stop those first weeks he was at college and it's much more hit and miss and mostly bantering now.  I do want him to know we're on his team, we are here to help and if he needs some tools, direction or advice, so be it.  That doesn't enter anywhere on the classroom side for him.  Usually more like the occasional reminder, hey, don't forget that if you don't do X, Y will happen.  I don't plan on doing it forever but I have parented long enough to know that you don't always know how things will evolve over time.  My parents provided some over the top supports for a sibling of mine I can't ever imagine providing.  

It makes me laugh because I'm also on a parent board for my kid's school.  You want to see helicoptering?  We have parents complaining non stop and up in arms about not fast enough snow plowing, cold weather, their child not liking the dorm food, their child having a TA/prof that <gasp> speaks with a foreign accent and is hard to understand, their kid doesn't know how to meet people, roommate conflicts etc etc etc to the point where they are problem solving on the board for their child with a bunch of other parents and moderators.  I can see having a conversation with your kid and troubleshooting with them about many of these things.  Going on a parent board and demanding a group of parents stand up and go to administration to complain about something like foreign accents?  Umm ... hard no.  Send your kid to CC if you want a less "worldly" campus.  

The OP can do what she wants.  Some people have just explained how and why they may have made a different choice.  One size does not fit all.  If your child lives or visits home regularly, most of these types of supports are just built into day to day conversation.  If your young adult lives with you, that's a huge level of support by default.

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41 minutes ago, lauraw4321 said:

My DH had zero scaffolding. He didn’t even have medication until college. The fact he graduated is a miracle. He feels strongly that being forced to find internal motivation was key to his current abilities. Who am I to argue? I don’t have ADHD  

I scaffold (read, nag) DH when the issue at stake is something like my family's Health insurance. Or an appointment I need him to handle for the kids because I have an unavoidable conflict. If it affects only him, I do not scaffold. If he lost his job, because of his EF deficits we would be fine because I don’t depend on him. It would be painful in the short term, but ultimately fine. I could easily spend my entire life working on other people’s goals and priorities. I won’t. 

But his "current abilities" include being dependent on another adult for EF support! So he is basically saying that his child should do without the support he currently receives, so that she will develop the skills he developed, and then by the time she's his age she'll be able to.... still be dependent on someone else?  Has it occurred to him that if he'd had scaffolding and support when he was younger, he might not be so dependent on his wife for EF support as an adult? Or that maybe it would be better for his daughter to not have to hope for a "miracle" in order to graduate from college? 

You ask "who are you to argue" with your DH since he's the one with ADHD — but the fact that he is one person with ADHD, who barely survived college and still needs help, does not make him an expert on the best way to raise and support someone else with ADHD. Quite the opposite.

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Quote

My DH had zero scaffolding. He didn’t even have medication until college. The fact he graduated is a miracle. He feels strongly that being forced to find internal motivation was key to his current abilities. Who am I to argue? I don’t have ADHD  

 

He might be right. Or he might be trying to rationalize that a sucky situation wasn't so bad and he's better off than he really is, in the same way that people who grow up in dire poverty will sometimes claim that it was a benefit to them not to have consistent meals on the table. Either way, whether he succeeded BECAUSE of the lack of scaffolding or DESPITE it, he's not the same person as your child.

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Guys, PLEASE stop trying to convince her you are right.  Let her have her opinion.  UGGGGGGGG.  This board makes me so mad sometimes.

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7 minutes ago, seekinghim45 said:

Guys, PLEASE stop trying to convince her you are right.  Let her have her opinion.  UGGGGGGGG.  This board makes me so mad sometimes.

If you had any experience with non-neurotypical kids, you would understand that we are not attacking the OP, we are advocating for an 11 year old child with ADHD. The people who are "arguing with her" in this thread were having these same discussions on this board about our elementary-aged kids a decade ago when her daughter was still in diapers. We have BTDT and it makes us sad to see where this may be headed.

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4 minutes ago, Corraleno said:

If you had any experience with non-neurotypical kids, you would understand that we are not attacking the OP, we are advocating for an 11 year old child. The people who are "arguing with her" in this thread were having these discussions on this board a decade ago when her daughter was in diapers. We have BTDT and it makes us sad to see where this may be headed.

And the way you have attacked her, no wonder she won't listen.  I should have known better than to come back.  I always get upset when I get on the board.  I am so much happier not on here.

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I think you have all missed the parts where I have repeatedly said that I did and do scaffold for this kid. This kid is getting tons of help. My DH had none. He said it took realizing that he may not get into college for him to try and develop any kind of system. 

He likely doesn’t recognize or realize the scaffolding I do for him. I do far less than when we first got married. I realized that if he forgot to pack any underwear, he could figure it out (as an example).  He managed to graduate high school and college without a spouse helping him. It means he did a lot of stuff the hard way. He’s never been fired from a job. He has had to do some very expensive things because of EF failures, and I try to avoid those now. I can write you novels if you’d like but frankly I have better things to do.

It’s impossible for me to give his entire life story and mine and my kids on a board post. I don’t treat my 11 yo like a NT kid. In this instance that I posted about, she refused / declined my offers to scaffold. I WOULD HAVE TAUGHT HER THAT SHE WAS INCOMPETENT IF I INSISTED ON STEPPING IN. 

I have had to set very firm boundaries in my life to avoid becoming everyone’s EF. I have been telling this kid for years now that the reason we practice this now is because “I won’t be there in college.”  

Glad to be everyone’s entertainment. 

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I think attacked is a pretty strong word, seekinghmi45. Disagreeing with somebody is not necessarily an attack. I think everybody here is only trying to share their perspective in the hopes that other people won't make the same mistakes they made. Sometimes our own regrets can make us a little vehement.

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4 minutes ago, Tanaqui said:

I think attacked is a pretty strong word, seekinghmi45. Disagreeing with somebody is not necessarily an attack. I think everybody here is only trying to share their perspective in the hopes that other people won't make the same mistakes they made. Sometimes our own regrets can make us a little vehement.

Perhaps but the volume is overwhelming.  But then again, I flee conflict.  I find it better to encourage people.

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To hark back to the early part of the discussion, I think about grade six is a good time to begin some push and pull on things like this.  Giving kids some chances to take responsibility, see what they can do, or not do.  Not that you don't give advice or help with things when asked, like "how do I know when to start x project".  And then if things don't quite work out you see where they went wrong and look at providing help making it work next time, and then you see how they manage alone....

Even if you feel like your kids are in some sort of program or situation where doing poorly now will cause problems, that isn't going to improve, it's going to get worse the further you go.

As for university, there will be a time you need to be done helping, even with organisation.  Not that you don't chat like you would with anyone, but that's different I think.  I studied with a lot of absent minded types, very bright but disorganised, most of them got through their BA, some really through the grace of their professors.  But of those, most either figured it out during their MA or they dropped out, and of the very few that were brilliant enough to do an MA without managing themselves, they didn't ever finish a Phd.  My sense is there really is a line, and if it's not a BA it is still there somewhere.

What maybe gives me pause is just that despite all the help young people get now and the greater degree of parent involvement in the last generation or so, I haven't really seen the young people improving their performance, rather the opposite.  Like Sneezyzone said, in the military, or in the university, I see kids who aren't coping at far higher levels than before.  So I wonder whether extending this kind of parental management has been helpful overall.

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I think extending parent management for NT kids is a completely different discussion.  Those of us who have practiced scaffolding in various ways for non NT kids are working toward independence as much as possible.

I see helicopter parenting as preventing independence.

Scaffolding for non NT kids might look like helicopter parenting but it is not remotely the same.

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10 minutes ago, Tanaqui said:

I think attacked is a pretty strong word, seekinghmi45. Disagreeing with somebody is not necessarily an attack. I think everybody here is only trying to share their perspective in the hopes that other people won't make the same mistakes they made. Sometimes our own regrets can make us a little vehement.

And probably 80% of this thread is general comments on the topic of EF dysfunction and/or responses to people other than the OP. Threads take on a life of their own and meander far and wide. It's not like this whole thread is one long harangue at the OP.

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30 minutes ago, seekinghim45 said:

Guys, PLEASE stop trying to convince her you are right.  Let her have her opinion.  UGGGGGGGG.  This board makes me so mad sometimes.

so - why are you trying to insist that a multiplicity of those of us with ADULT neurodiverse kids (who've graduated from college), who have been through the process ourselves (for ourselves and our adult children)  - are wrong? and that one mother of an 11 year old child, married to an adult who, her words: was a miracle he graduated college - is right?

the statements have been repeated - there is no one size fits all.  there just isn't.  kids are different, what they need is different.  and just because something (barely) worked for her dh, doesn't mean it will work for her child.

 

20 minutes ago, seekinghim45 said:

And the way you have attacked her, no wonder she won't listen.  I should have known better than to come back.  I always get upset when I get on the board.  I am so much happier not on here.

no one has attacked her - but you sure are going to bat against everyone else.  why is this so personal to you?

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2 minutes ago, gardenmom5 said:

so - why are you trying to insist that a multiplicity of those of us with ADULT neurodiverse kids (who've graduated from college), who have been through the process ourselves (for ourselves and our adult children)  - are wrong? and that one mother of an 11 year old child, married to an adult who, her words: was a miracle he graduated college - is right?

the statements have been repeated - there is no one size fits all.  there just isn't.  kids are different, what they need is different.  and just because something (barely) worked for her dh, doesn't mean it will work for her child.

 

no one has attacked her - but you sure are going to bat against everyone else.  why is this so personal to you?

 SEEE I DID NOT SAY YOU WERE WRONG!!!  PLEASE BE NICE

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11 minutes ago, MysteryJen said:

I think extending parent management for NT kids is a completely different discussion.  Those of us who have practiced scaffolding in various ways for non NT kids are working toward independence as much as possible.

I see helicopter parenting as preventing independence.

Scaffolding for non NT kids might look like helicopter parenting but it is not remotely the same.

Exactly! It drives me absolutely bonkers when people conflate accommodations for disabilities with helicoptering or snowplowing to remove every possible obstacle from in front of a totally capable NT kid. They. Are. Not. The. Same.  No matter how many accommodations they have, kids with disabilities still face plenty obstacles, and will do so for the rest of their lives. If anything, the kids I know with LDs are some of the most hard-working, resilient, pick-themselves-up-and-keep-going people I've ever met. It pisses me off to no end when people look down on those with accommodations like they're just immature, coddled snowflakes who can't handle real life. Try walking a freaking mile in their shoes and see how easy their lives are!

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