Seeking advice on inspiring difficult child to job hunt

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by dashcat, May 22, 2010.

  1. dashcat

    dashcat Member

    First a little background: I am fairly new to the world of the difficult child. I had a easy child until she was about 12 and then there was a very slow slide to the difficult child side. When she hit 17, the stuff really hit the fan. Her most recent episode was up and leaving college (7 hours away), meeting up with a guy she'd met on the internet (whom she'd "known" for 3 weeks online) and taking off to North Carolina with him to "live". We told her she had to formally withdraw from school (she, a former honor student, was failing everything) and return home to get a job. When she saved enough money and paid her debts, she would be able to get an apt and live wherever she wanted.

    That was February. She lived with diagnosis until a month ago and did absolutely nothing to look for a job. She sunbathed, surfed the internet, skyped with her "true love" (a guy she's only seen in person for 48 hours), watched tv and ate.

    She had a blowout with him (loonnnng story) and moved in with me. We just moved back to our home following a house fire in Oct, so there is much to do and I'm working her like crazy. Still, she does have to get a job. I can't pay for her health insurance, and she'll be off of X's in June when she turns 19.

    We don't give her money, but she really doesn't seem to care. I get her up at 9:00 five days a week and make her work around the house until after dinner. And I do mean work. She does the work, does a reasonably good job, complains minimally. I refuse to let her lie around and veg except on weekends.

    I sat her down last weekend and told her I really appreciated her help around here, but it's time for her to find full time work. She wants to go to cosmetology school in the fall (she thinks, in her delusional mind that this will be in North Carolina). I told her that her free school ride was over and she would have to pay herself. You don't just walk away from an expensive private college with the only explaination being "it wasn't a good fit".

    I told her I knew she'd been lying about job hunting in the past and called her on a few specifics Lying has always been a huge issue with her.

    But how in heck do you MAKE someone look for a job? I sent her out to an agency yesterday and I know she went. She did apply at a salon and said she'd applied for a waituress position the day before. She claims to be filling out apps online.

    It's hard enough to find a job - even if you're trying. I really cannot throw her out. I'm not there yet in the tough love world. She's a sweet, loving and fairly compliant girl. She feels completely abandoned by her dad - he left us suddenly back in 2006 and, now that he's angry with her he is ignoring her completely. He hasn't made any effort to see her in the last month other than acceping a dinner invite from me and running into her during the move.

    Sorry this is so long. She refuses counseling right now and seems happy to be "stuck".

  2. PonyGirl

    PonyGirl Warrior Parent

    Hi Dash, and welcome to difficult child Land. The only suggestion I could make here would be the old 'carrot & stick' routine....Since your daughter has been active in helping around the house (- a fact MANY of us difficult child Moms are pretty unfamiliar with!) it seems to me she is willing to make the effort, perhaps just needs a little incentive. If you could come up with something along the lines of...."If you fill out x amount of applications this week, I will give you x y z..." or "If you don't look for work, you will need to find a new place to stay by x date"....These are just my random thoughts, you could find something that fits your situation.

  3. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I think Fran's "do to get" theory is in order here. Your dtr must want something. You want something from find a job.

    Maybe cosmetology school could be a carrot. They are usually found at community colleges so maybe she should apply locally. She needs to understand that she is not a resident of NC so it would be prohibitively expensive to come down here and apply to go to school at a community college.
  4. dashcat

    dashcat Member

    I am looking for the right carrot. When she bailed out of college (lying to us and everyone else about her grades) and took off, I pulled her money out of our joint savings account. She babysat all through HS and I made her save 1/2 of each pay. She also had $ from her grad party. I didn't want her spending it on internet boy, so I pulled it. I used some to pay her portion of my car insurance and told her DEX and I would release it to her after she got a job. She wants to buy a car and she doesn't have quite enough and I did tell her I'd possibly help her with the car thing. Every once and awhile she brings up the money and expects me to just give it to her. The problem is she owes mega $ to student loans and has an oustanding ambulance bill that she incurred during one of her drama queen acts. We would have helped her pay it had she not ignored it for six months.

    I honestly think she feels better now that she is being productive, but she just can't seem to take the next step. It's so hard becasue I throw her out of the house to go looking but really have no idea if she actually is. Her lies, as many of you experioenced warriors know all too well, are spectacular and often very convincing. She also has the difficult child badge of honor: MegaEntitlement. Sigh. I know I don't have 1/2 the issues that I've read about here, but it's still a challenge.

  5. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    Tell her that since she is now an adult that she MUST pay rent to continue living with you. Give her an amount. Do NOT tell her that you will make her leave if you will not. You CAN tell her that the kitchen and food will be off limits (even if you must put a chain around the fridge!) as will be the hot water and air conditioning for her room. Close the vent to her room so that the a/c does not go into there. Put a chain on the fridge. turn off the shut-off valve to the hot water in her bathroom.

    You can be creative. I am sure new clothes, jewelry, snacks, magazines, music, etc... are wanted. No job, no stuff.

    Also, tell her you will turn off the internet if she doesn't pay her rent. She wants to skype with that guy, she can get a job and earn it. Is the computer hers or the family one (ie yours)? If it is hers you cannot take it away. You can go to your router (if you have wireless) and deny access to her computer. If she is plugged into the wall for a hard-wired network system, take the cord away. If she is using your computer, put a lock on the door of the room it is in AND take the keyboard and mouse with you. Keep them in your trunk.

    that way if she wants to chat with that guy she MUST go get a job and pay rent. Rent doesn't have to be a lot. Just something to help her learn to be responsible. You can use the money for the house or if you want to you could put it in a savings account NOT in her name and let it grow. Then if you need to help her move or sign a lease you can use that money.

    Just be SURE that you put an agreement IN WRITING that says if at any time she violates your rules, steals from you, is discovered to be using drugs, or refuses to get a job then she will have 2 weeks to move out. BOTH of you sign it. TWO copies. One goes in your file. That way if at some point you are ready to throw her out then you won't have to do a formal eviction as some areas require if you don't have an agreement like that.
  6. CrazyinVA

    CrazyinVA Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Does she have a cellphone that you pay for? That might be one of the first things I"d use as a carrot/stick. Internet use is another good one as suggested above. As is use of the car for anything other than job interviews. I would require that she apply for X jobs per week if she wants to use those things. If she's applying online, ask for evidence.. have her do a screenprint of her applications. If she's applying in person, be sure she shows you the apps as she leaves to go drop them off.