May 12, 2023 at 12:36 am #418526
May 12, 2023 at 8:02 am #418534
- Hello everybody, I write concerning a 21 years old, very smart guy, my friend’s son. My friend is desperate. First the son didn’t want to finish high school. Finally he did with excellent results and got immediately admitted to university where he was motivated for 3 months, then he left. Since he is just hanging out at home, smoking weed, not willing to work or study. The parents- divorced and he doesn’t get along very well with his mum’s new boyfriend- have tried everything to convince him to do something. He only gets high and does stupid things, gets arrested and the parents have to pay. He doesn’t want to work because he doesn’t want to be anybody’s ‘slave’. He’s bored at school. How do you think we could motivate him without moralizing etc. As I said, he is very intelligent, speaks fluently 3 languages, well-read for his age. How can we help him find his passion or have him realize that he cannot just deal with weed all his life. Thanks a lot for your ideas.
I think that since her son is 21, perhaps some “tough love” would be appropriate: I think she shouldn’t be supporting him and paying for his escapades, but ask him to move out, if he’s not planning to continue his studies. That will force him to find work and get his act together. If she keeps bailing him out and tolerating his lifestyle, she will be enabling him and not helping him at all.
I understand that he might have a tough time due to his parents divorcing and possibly other issues from his childhood. But nevertheless, smoking weed all day and getting in trouble with the law is not the answer. I would also suggest that he starts attending therapy. If I were his mother, I would pay for his therapy, but I wouldn’t keep enabling his bad behavior and bailing him out.May 12, 2023 at 8:59 am #418536
Thanks a lot, Tee. That’s exactly what she is doing. She has stopped giving him money but still buy him food. He lives separately in one of their apartments, I think he doesn’t need to pay the rent. Therapy would be a good idea. Apparently he has read many books on psychology, mainly on how to manipulate people. I can fully understand that nowadays it’s not easy for young people. Moralizing is not a solution either. I just don’t know how to support my friend. They are absolutely clueless because he just doesn’t want to do anything…. I promised I would talk to him but don’t really know what else i can say.May 12, 2023 at 9:32 am #418537
you are welcome!
She has stopped giving him money but still buy him food. He lives separately in one of their apartments, I think he doesn’t need to pay the rent.
Hm, that’s still providing for his basic upkeep. I guess he has some money of his own (maybe from his father?) to buy weed regularly? I wouldn’t let him live in her apartment for free if he doesn’t want to continue his studies. Because if she does, he won’t be motivated to change anything about his lifestyle.
Therapy would be a good idea.
Yes, I think that would be a must.
Apparently he has read many books on psychology, mainly on how to manipulate people.
Hm, that’s not a good sign. It seems he wants to take the easy route. He is already manipulating her quite successfully…
I can fully understand that nowadays it’s not easy for young people. Moralizing is not a solution either.
Sure, if she just preaches to him, he won’t listen. But I don’t know him. Maybe he is just spoiled and has been like that since he was a child?
I just don’t know how to support my friend. They are absolutely clueless because he just doesn’t want to do anything…. I promised I would talk to him but don’t really know what else i can say.
You are already supporting her, by talking to her and inquiring about the possibilities for help. You’re also posting here on her behalf. Frankly, I don’t think you should talk to him, unless you are a specially important person in his life. If he isn’t listening to his parents, he is probably not going to listen to you either. I don’t think you can do more than what you’re already doing.May 12, 2023 at 9:53 am #418538
Thanks so much for your answer. Actually, I have only met him once. I have just reconnected with my old school friend whose sister invited me to her bday. That’s where I met him and that’s where my friend’s sister told me about the disastrous stories of him. Smoking weed, not studying, doing stupid things while high. They have suggested him many options, even found jobs for him but he doesn’t want any of them. Today they set a deadline by when he has to move out of the flat, sell his car in order to pay for the stupidity he had done and find a job or continue university. He said ok. As I travel a lot and he found me ‘cool’ at the bday party, my friend’s sister hopes that I can talk to him and maybe have a good ‘influence’ on him or convince him to get his stuff together. But I’d rather agree with you. If he doesn’t want to change, even God would be unable to make him change. Additionally, I don’t have kids myself, so I might not be the right person to give advice 🙂May 12, 2023 at 10:28 am #418540
you’re most welcome!
Today they set a deadline by when he has to move out of the flat, sell his car in order to pay for the stupidity he had done and find a job or continue university. He said ok.
Sounds good. It seems they are on it, doing what needs to be done, setting some boundaries. I hope it will work!
As I travel a lot and he found me ‘cool’ at the bday party, my friend’s sister hopes that I can talk to him and maybe have a good ‘influence’ on him or convince him to get his stuff together. But I’d rather agree with you. If he doesn’t want to change, even God would be unable to make him change.
Yeah, since you only met him once, very recently, I don’t think it would make any difference. But who knows, maybe you can talk to him about other things, e.g. the parts of your life that he finds cool. Not really pressuring him or trying to preach, but just sharing your story perhaps? But I think it would need to be in another relaxed setting, say on a party, so that he doesn’t feel pressured into talking with you. I would keep it very light and no pressure…. and only if he shows interest.
Additionally, I don’t have kids myself, so I might not be the right person to give advice
Well, you’ve got your coolness 🙂 As I said above, if there is a chance to meet again in a relaxed setting, then perhaps you could nonchalantly approach him and have a chat. But I wouldn’t force anything, and wouldn’t make it a “mission” of mine to save him. You are doing enough already…May 12, 2023 at 10:36 pm #418548
Ta Tee, that’s exactly what I think: I am nobody’s savior and I definitely don’t preach. I also thought that if he wants, we can go for a drink and I can tell him stories of my life which might wake up his creativity and motivate him to use it in a positive way: write or paint or who knows. I think there is just a fine line about how you use your energy. One just needs to find it. Sometimes a book can can be life changing.
Have a great weekend.May 12, 2023 at 11:25 pm #418550
that’s a good idea to invite him for a drink, if he wants, and simply talk about your life and experiences, without preaching. Just sort of see him as an equal and relate from that perspective (non-judgmental, supportive). I think that can work wonders, at least for some people.
Wish you luck, if you decide to go for it. And have a great weekend yourself!May 13, 2023 at 7:30 am #418557RobertaParticipant
I think that many young men suffer aimlessness as our society’s do not really have any rights of passage anymore to help them throw off the freedoms of childhood and move into taking their place as a useful adult within the tribe.
A pilgrimage/trek in nature may help to bring clarity. Nowadays there are many guided & or sponsored events catering for all abilities.May 15, 2023 at 9:04 am #418764
Thanks for your answer. You are right, it’s a general problem, it seems. At least in Europe. I was also thinking of tracking. Maybe he could go together with his mum, so they could get closer and maybe talk about what bothers him in depth. Although he has done therapy which didn’t seem to help much. The other thing I thought of was working for an NGO in Africa or in India. Maybe he would realize how good his life is here and he would feel useful by helping others. Who knows what’s going on in his head.
Have a nice week ahead.