Trying to influence the outside world

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by AHF, Mar 28, 2011.

  1. AHF

    AHF Member

    Hi all,

    So I think I left off where Peter Pan was going to be homeless after the last day of the winter quarter at the school where he's parked himself, and I wasn't going to pay for anything other than treatment. Well, I stuck to that, only to hear from him on the day in question that his "friends" (being, of course, much better people than his parents) were going to pay his expenses to stay in school. After then turning down several solicitations for $ to tide him over the spring break, I called one of these "friends" and learned that no, he was not giving Peter Pan any money; others might be but he doubted it. I went online to Peter Pan's financial account at the college--the only info to which I have access--and saw that nothing has been paid. I called the housing office and asked what would happen if he didn't pay his bill. I learned about late fees, threats to credit, etc. But when I said, "But if he doesn't register for classes and he doesn't pay you any money, you'll still let him stay till the end of the quarter?" the answer was yes.

    My question now is, do I communicate with the dean of students at this school? He's not even an admitted student to the school--he took a couple classes as a special student last quarter, but has never given them a transcript or recommendations, nothing. He could be (and may become) a psychopath. It shocks me that they would let him just stay on in the dorms, paying nothing, putting himself and possibly others at risk. It's not that big a school--3300 students--so they should be able to take notice. I know they can't speak to me, but I can speak to them. Or do I let this go, as part of detachment, figuring that if the world doesn't exact appropriate consequences it's not my business to persuade it to do so?
  2. elizabrary

    elizabrary Member

    Let it go. He will have to deal with the consequences on his own, and eventually this will all catch up to him. He's a grown up and it's his life. And great job for not caving into giving him $!!!
  3. KTMom91

    KTMom91 Well-Known Member

    I'd let it go, too. At some point, he'll have to deal with the consequences of his actions, whether he steps up and starts taking classes again or not.
  4. AHF

    AHF Member

    I hear y'all. I guess my ulterior motive is to get him into treatment. Had hoped that he would hit bottom when the hanging-out-at-school ploy didn't work, and the school's unbelievable laxity postpones that while he sinks deeper into dysfunction. But I know. Detach. Detach.
  5. toughlovin

    toughlovin Guest

    I don't know I think I might call the dean of students, let them know your concerns, that you will support him in treatment but you won't be paying any of the bills at school. You have no idea what he is telling them, so I think directly clarifying your position might be a good idea.
  6. DaisyFace

    DaisyFace Love me...Love me not


    First, good for you for staying strong!

    Second, I think you've "butt in" too much already...what do you care who may or may not be giving him money? Not your problem, remember?

    Also, I would NOT communicate with the Dean or anyone else. He is a 21 year old adult. His Mommy does not need to be running interference for him. If he intends to be that "creepy guy who doesn't go to class or anything, he just lives here"....let HIM live with that. Eventually, there will be complaints.

    You need to remove yourself from the situation entirely. If nothing else, it will give him less "fuel" for nasty rumors about what a horrible and overbearing parent you are.

  7. everywoman

    everywoman Active Member

    I believe it is your responsibility if you believe he could be a threat to others as you have implied. Not saying anything if you know he may do something to someone else would be wrong, IMPO. If he is just hanging out and freeloading--then it is not your problem.
  8. AHF

    AHF Member

    I do think, sometimes--does anyone else have these waking nightmares?--of the parents of the kids who either go berserk in a college setting or hang themselves from their roommate's shower curtain. We do wonder, and not without reason, if they knew ... and if they did know, why didn't they try to contact someone?
  9. AnnieO

    AnnieO Shooting from the Hip

    ...Sometimes they knew and were afraid, or just plain didn't know how... Some people don't understand that the police might have to be involved. Or a medic unit, an ER, a psychiatric hospital... And sometimes they DID try to tell someone and were told it was bad parenting, or my personal ...favorite... "they'll grow out of it".

    FWIW, I have been afraid to call the cops. Afraid not to. Wondering if it was a "stage". Tearing-my-hair-out worried. And in denial. And they run in a random order, too.
  10. toughlovin

    toughlovin Guest

    I always feel terrible for the parents of the kids who do horrible crimes..... I think so often it is hard to believe your kid would do such a thing. I have always been surprised when my son was accused of something and he told me a story I believed and then found out he did actually do whatever it was!!! Luckily so far it has never been as horrible as you hear on the news but man I always cry inside for those parents.
  11. dashcat

    dashcat Member

    I would definately call the Dean of Students. If there is even a remote chance that he is a danger to himself or others, the shcool should be notified. He has no business being there and, while I agree with letting go and detachment where appropriate, i don't see this as one of those times. Even if you feel better making and anonymous call, it would be better than not calling.
  12. AHF

    AHF Member

    Thanks, all. I think I found--well, not a solution, but a way I feel comfortable addressing this. The woman who ran the step-down program that he left 2 months ago inquired how he was doing, and I sent her an email detailing the situation. SHE has forwarded that to the dean of students. So now, at least, they have a heads-up. And if their policy is to let this unknown deadbeat hang out in their dorms, then it's beyond my control. But it's good to know that people are of two minds about this sort of thing. I know I am, all the time.
  13. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    It's a fine line we walk AHF..............and it often can feel like a tight wire act.

    I don't think I'd have checked into the money I'd simply find it hard to believe someone else would be willing to pay for his school. But as for the the school the heads up they have a mentally unstable person who is currently not enrolled ect living on campus.......yeah, I'd have to say I'd have contacted them to inform them. When it comes to safety issues, I don't hesitate. I'd rather error on the side of caution.

  14. HaoZi

    HaoZi Guest

    With that eye towards safety, I think I'd have tried contacting head of campus security and let him know the dean is taking no interest but that I thought security ought to be aware of the situation and alert to trouble and whatever issues he has going on so they have an idea how to handle a situation to the best possible outcome if something comes up.
  15. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I think giving your knowledge of the stability factor and safety factor you probably did best. If it had been my kid...( my kid would have ever gotten in a dorm anyway would have been a miracle) but mine would never be a safety risk to others so I wouldnt have needed to worry if he would hurt himself or others so I would not have felt a need to save him from incurring costs associated with being a deadbeat.
  16. AHF

    AHF Member

    That he got into the dorm is merely a sign that he is a Master Manipulator. The sad thing being that the institution may well change its rules once they see how they've been played. Just a small sign of the ways in which our difficult children make things harder, not just on us, but on other young people who will hereafter be suspect because of their behavior.
  17. ctmom05

    ctmom05 Member

    Now that an email has been sent to the Dean, it is going to be hard not to spend time wondering if he got it .. .. .. if he read it .. .. .. or what the reaction/action is going to be. I don't think you have the ability to steer the outcome very much, if at all.

    As tough as it is, backing off and letting your son encounter the consequences as they come is probably a healthier option.