This phenomenon typically occurs because parents, your parents do not want to upset or disappoint you. Because of their misguided ways, you literally receive everything. You have the keys to the high-end golf and country club; however, you have never earned your way onto the property. According to the famed columnist, Abigail Van Buren, “If you want children to keep their feet on the ground, put some responsibility on their shoulders.” At its core, this enabling parenting style serves to disable the child and create dependents of the state. As such, the child never grows up and is incapable of independent living.
I ____________________________ pledge that I will not be a statistic and one of the unlucky ones to inhabit my parents’ living space at the age of 50. I want to be independent and not living a life of co-dependency. I know that accepting large sums of money, to be deposited monthly in my bank account is not going to be helpful, both short-term and long-term. The belief in myself will serve as an ongoing reminder to expect of myself and not of others, including my parents. I do not want to feel like a burden or that I am being bought for a zero-sum return. I choose to invest in myself.
- Think about establishing your own core-values. That is, the things that are uniquely and naturally you, which no one can take away from you.
- Core-values = self-respect.
- Reflect on your own standard by which you want to be known and remembered for. This is connected to your core values.
- Notice and begin to question your parents’ motives and actions.
- Consider where you want to be in 5 years, 10 years and beyond.
- Engage with your interests and dreams.
- Challenge your thinking and reflect on how you look at the world around you.
- Sit down and make jot notes about the standard by which you want to live and define your philosophy.
- Find a suitable part-time job to supplement your schoolwork and social life.
- Become a saver and put a percentage of your earnings in a secure and sheltered area. For example, open a TFSA, RRSP, etc.
- Actively read business reports and analysis (Globe and Mail, Stocks App).
- Schedule an initial meeting with a bank representative where you bank to become more financially literate.
- Insist on accepting your own money as a way to save and spend.
- If parents want to pay/contribute, consider whether it is a gift or whether it is connected to expectations.
- Look for volunteer opportunities in areas of interest. For example, a food bank, animal shelter or soup kitchen.
Accepting cart blanche, weekly or monthly stipends, commonly deposited directly into your account, is a dangerous proposition. Often these transactions end up feeling like you are owed and that there is a money tree with an endless supply raining down. We become numb to such frequent exchanges that we come to learn and depend on nothing else. Consequently, anger soars, moods change, and a lack of real discipline prevails. This creates the perfect storm; whereby, it seems more and more kids are occupying in greater numbers the friendly confines of their parents’ couch. Missing is the experiences of going, staying in school and setting career goals. Increasingly, children are remaining in child-like states, never having the experience of leaving their parents’ care. We the parents, create the monsters behaviourally. The outcome becomes anger, rage and incapacity to move in any meaningful way. The children remain a burden on their parents and never know what it is like to find for themselves and create their own path in life.
My understanding related to the fault-lines of parental indulgences will afford me the necessary awareness in order to make the correct moves and changes so that I can enjoy the life I want for myself. I am under no illusion that this quest will be easy; however, I appreciate that I must demand a certain standard for myself and not depend on my parents, unless I want to be beholden to them, at which point the only option in front of me will be “failure to launch.” It needs to be on your terms and not on theirs.