Graduated legal age


New Member
(all politically views aside) The legal drinking age set to 21 because it is recognized that young adults often have poor judgement in some areas. But in most states kids are given medical decision making ability at age 16 which, includes counseling. I certainly don't want to impose laws to lock people up because I disagree with their life choices but, it certainly seems like there is a huge population out there that is not being served because the standard for getting help is set so high that there has to be imminent danger before anyone can intervene. I see no legal reason why they can't have a graduated age of majority if mental health treatment is needed.

I know, I know, forced help seldom works. When my daughter is thinking clearly she is a completly different person and often gets angry that I didn't do more to help. But she's over 18 and I can't do more. Her last counselor said the longer she stays in this environment the more this "false bravado" personality will become engrained in her. It just breaks my heart to see so many kids and their families going through needless pain. I just hate accepting there is no solution.


(the future) MRS. GERE
I'd be surprised if any people would disagree with you about wanting a higher age for medical decisions. In PA kids have the power over medical treatments at 14 :faint: :nonono: :grrr: but parents are still legally responsible for them until they are 18.

It is very tough accepting what life dishes out. Please do not look at it as defeat. This is just how things are right now.

What you need to do is accept how things are right now. There is nothing you can do for your daughter that she does not want you to. There may be a time later, but right now, she is in her own world. Move on, but be ready for when she comes back. She may very well. However, don't spend your days hanging on her every word and promise. You are not doing yourself any favors that way.

Serenity prayer...say it say it say it.

Gentle hugs.
I agree with you. It would be good to have an alternative between, on the one hand, jail, and on the other hand, treatment that difficult child can simply decide not to comply with. The standard for involuntary commitment -- imminent danger to self or others -- is too high for adolescents where the personality is still forming.

You are right that "forced change" doesn't work, but maybe, at least in some cases, a facility devoted to treatment (as opposed to punitive incarceration) but which is mandatory would be able to put them in an environment where maybe the message can get through and they start to want to change.

I once in a discussion tried to float the idea of such a system, an kind of alternative to the prison system, specifically for difficult child/substance abuse offences. Response was universally negative, between opposition from the left (no one should be locked up in any way, shape, or form if no one was directly harmed) and from the right (law and order/personal responsibility, the laws ought to be tougher, lock 'em up and throw away the key).

Hound dog

Nana's are Beautiful
I consider myself blessed that here a child has to be 18 or legally emancipated to make their own medical decisions.

They teach us in school that a minor with a child is considered an emancipated minor. I've had to correct 3 professors so far. As it seems someone has neglected to inform the medical community of this fact.

N cannot sign consent for the baby to have treatment, she HAS to have either her parents or b/f to sign as we are legal adults.

But I'm not complaining. During Aubrey's recent ER scare all procedure's were run by ME first, N and b/f next with me explaining it so they could understand. Children's wasn't even going to let them go back to see the baby at all. easy child and I had to swear N and b/f were Aubrey's parents. :faint:


New Member
I agree with HWGA.

When easy child was 15 and I took her to the eye doctor, My easy child had to give me permission to stay in the room.

I scrambled to get difficult child into rehab and a GED program before he turned 18 because after that b'day he could live as he wished.

He is just another proof of a failing system, he was given 30 days to pay 700 dollars or go to jail. There is no way difficult child is capable of managing his money to save it and do the right thing.

So he is left to ~

A. Go to jail

B. Steal from someone to come up with the money

C. Disappear and run from the charges

How will any of these choices help him?

I wonder what the judge is thinking?

She ordered him to come up with 700 in 30 days.

She knows he is charged with robbery, while he was using drugs, to buy more drugs.

I guess he is falling into the lock'em up and throw away the key dept.