Posts tagged ‘sons’

September 25, 2008

My son gets money from his grandparents who can’t seem to say NO…

by Rod Smith

My son (19), although he does work, gets a lot of money from his grandparents on his father’s side. Although we are divorced, and it his father’s parents, I still feel some responsibility and that my son should not do this. They can’t seem to say no to him and I just heard he ran up his grandmother’s mobile phone account to an astronomical amount. I recently got an indirect message from my husband that my interference was not appreciated. Please advise. (Letter edited)

If I were in your shoes, I too would feel overwhelmed with the sense that your son is being inappropriate. I would find myself wishing my former in-laws felt more empowered to refuse to give my son money, and I would most certainly desire he did not ask for it.

But, we are dealing with autonomous adults. Your son and his grandparents are free to engage in whatever dance they wish to enjoy. At some point, and probably without your help, someone in the mix is going to begin to insist on a change in behavior, and it is likely to happen without your having to interfere.

April 1, 2008

You were heavy-handed…..

by Rod Smith

“You write, to a woman asking for help with her son that if she gets her attitude right she might see a shift in her son’s attitude. Just because she has a ‘right attitude’ it doesn’t mean her son will. It seems to me you were a little heavy handed with someone asking for your advice. I am a single mother and two of my three children are boys. My boys are very respectful of women because they have been taught by me to be that way from a very early age. My feelings for their father have nothing to do with it. At the age of 11 it will be difficult to change the attitude of a son but can still be done. Let him know that his attitude and behavior toward women is uncalled for and will not be tolerated. It can be difficult for a woman to raise a son alone especially when the father is not much help but it can be done.” (Edited for clarity)

As I said, attitudes are contagious. It seems your no-nonsense approach has paid off for you and for your children. Congratulations on your success. I am sure your children have thrived, at least partly, as a result of your forthrightness.

November 6, 2007

My son comments on our “little” lives…

by Rod Smith

On Sunday morning I thought we’d do the “European thing” and ride our bikes to church. (It seems to me that everyone rides bikes everywhere in Europe). So, my five and nine year old sons following closely behind me, we Smiths set out to cycle the three of four blocks through our neighborhood — and then, on arrival, we tied our bikes to a tree outside the gothic cathedral which is our church home.

It didn’t end with the ride home after the service. The boys and I decided we’d ride to the nearest coffee shop, and then onto “Kid’s Ink” the local children’s bookstore. After a snack at the Food Emporium we hit the canal and cycled through the university – before we ambled (can one “amble” on a bicycle?) our way toward home.

Tired from several hours of cycling, we pulled our bikes onto the steps leading to our front door when Thulani (9) reflected, “Daddy. I like our little lives.” When asked to enlarge on this (I am a therapist, remember) he continued, “I like it when you are not too busy to ride with us and we can stop at the park and eat snacks on the grass and.., and.., I just like our little lives.”