Thursday, January 26, 2012

Next door

Honestly I am really surprised how everyone's all for Dani paying expenses and stuff. Really she just pays for her share of our cell phone bill and that's it. Her school is so much more intense than my high school was that it seemed wrong to make her use up almost all her non-school time working. I figured as long as she kept up high grades then it was worth it.

Josh told his parents what Danielle told us. I know, because Laurie called me to talk about it. She said she very strongly feels Dani shouldn't have to get a job her freshman year of college. I reminded her that I had one. "Yes, and I wasn't pleased. However, it was not an ideal situation and we recognized that." Dani's applying for every single scholarship she qualifies for, and probably some she doesn't. I don't like to count on those - I'm always worried the world will explode and all of a sudden college won't be paid for. But if she gets enough then books will be covered too, and really Dani won't cost any more money in college than she does now.

The same issue will apply in college for Dani too - her classes are going to be all sciencey and hard. Harder than in her school now. So I am not sure about charging her rent or anything. All I am sure about is that she shouldn't tell Alex, who will definitely cry at the idea of having to sleep in her own room every night.


Just Me said...

I guess my thought is - high school is different than college. How do YOU spend your non-school time? It pretty much sounds like you work your butt off. Why should you work that hard just so she doesn't have to?

Certainly she shouldn't work at a level that jeopardizes her grades, but I still feel that she should contribute at a reasonable level once she graduates for two reasons: 1) once she is out of high school, she isn't your responsibility, she is an adult. Contributing teaches her adult responsibilities and realities. 2) You are her sister, not her parent. Contributing makes that role more apparent - it isn't really a sister's role to support another sister, when both are in college.

It's not about what she costs - it's about her transitioning into adult responsibilities, and you not being the only one who has to carry those responsibilities.

People value things more if they work for them, than if they are just given.

Anonymous said...

I have a few thoughts:

First, whether Dani goes away or Dani moves to the other room, Alex still sleeps alone. So it's not an option for her to keep her roommate next year, That's never been on the table.

Second, I actually think that parenting doesn't end when they turn 18. I realize you're not her mom and the situation is different, but in many ways her success in life still depends on how you provide for her now. I don't think she should "pay her own way" if it means jeapordizing her education. And I do think you can come up with a level of added contribution that would have her working some, but not most, of her non-school hours.

Third, it sounds like Josh's parents are poised to offer to help Dani financially so that she can go to the college of her choice. And I think you should brace yourself for that reality and figure out how you might respond.

Good luck.

Mizasiwa said...

Anon has a point that I was wondering about as well - i would also recomend you think abou thtem putting that on the table so you dont have a re match of the 'new duvet' episode when it happens ;-) also even if you dont want her to 'pay her way' by paying rent i do think that she should have a part time job at least - there will be opportunties during her freshman year that she will need to budet and pay for - my sister is going to Varsity not very far from were we live but far enough for her to have to live in Res and the price of getting her set up (new clothes becouse we all share, new bathtowels becouse the old ones were ratty and not nice - a fridge big girl bedding) was a bit of a hectic thing to sort out. But i knwo if she had stayed home and commuted to varsity that right after her exams and vac were over she would have gone out and found herself a job becouse she knows that there are things that she wants that she cant ask us for or doesnt really want to ask us. This is not a bad thing but it is part of growing up and being as responsible for your sisters as they are for you.

OTRgirl said...

Even if it's a 'work study' option. I went to college on a boat load of scholarships, but part of the package was that I was supposed to get an on-campus job for 10 hours a week. My books were paid for, so I didn't really think I needed to get a job. It was my mother who told me I needed to have my own spending money and needed to learn more responsibility. Plus it's a good way to learn skills that help after school.

Laurie has a point about not wanting Dani to jeapordize her grades, but I agree with the comments about her needing to step toward an adult role even if she stays in the apartment.

Anonymous said...

there is a 9/11 Victims Compensation Fund. Why are the 3 of you not part of that? You should not be worrying about money!

Anonymous said...

Lots of college students work! Even students from wealthy families. Someone like Danielle, graduating from Bronx Science, and ending up in a good NYC college, could definitely make $100/hr tutoring science/math to HS kids on the Upper West and Upper East sides. And I'm saying that as someone who did ...

And if she does well on her SATs she could get a job with one of the test prep companies, and then parlay that into private tutoring, and make even more.

If she tutors, she could totally contribute to expenses, and would still have plenty of time to study. In college you have more work if you take sciences, but also lots more time than in HS. I went to an intense NYC prep school, then an Ivy League college, and the former was a lot more work. (Now, medical school is its own kettle of fish.)

Anonymous said...

Anon 11:58 I think Sam worries because she's a worrier, because she was raised to be frugal and not spend money before she had it. If she won the lottery she'd probably still stick to a budget.

Nina said...

I think Laurie's concerns are legitimate, but having a part-time job will teach Dani responsibility, time management, and a greater appreciation for how hard it is to support oneself. She should be able to work 10 or maybe 15 hours a week without hurting her grades.

Honestly, I think maybe it's just difficult to see how you hurt yourself working so hard to support your sisters, but then have such a hard time trying to induce them to contribute. It's unfair to you, yes, but it also means that they don't have realistic views about what is entailed in making their lives possible. I love how you take care of them, but someday they have to learn to take care of themselves too. It's a process, but I think college is not an unreasonable place to begin.

Megan said...

I agree with those saying she should be expected to make a financial contribution to the household budget. I think it's also important to recognize that the contribution may not be equal in dollars to what you and Josh contribute, but that there's a definite expectation that she works at least 10 hours or so a week so she can contribute to the household expenses.

Anonymous said...

As others have said in less direct terms - having a job doesn't only get you money.

One thing I was always adamant about with my kids was giving them the opportunity to fail when it wasn't a big deal. Although Dani is a responsible kid and helps you out a lot, having a job and responsiblities of her own, not just chores that her big sister assigns will give her additional opportunites to learn. Having her first job be a real full time position that she needs to pay her rent and eat is a lot of pressure.

Also there's a feeling of satisfaction when you pay for something yourself. She deserves to feel confident and capable and helping to take care of herself is a big part of that.

Anonymous said...

I think Dani has worked before, at the bagel place. Tutoring math and science is a great idea for a job.

Anonymous said...

if Dani is choosing a field in science she will most likely require at least one grad degree. Where she studies for her undergrad work is very important to the rest of her academic and profession careers. If she gets accepted to good schools and scholarships won't cover her expenses hopefully Josh's parents will help financially. Please be open to this even if you guys are reluctant to be separated. As you have learned, part of being a parent is making so ething happen for your child when you weren't sure how you were going to make it happen.
I agree with the rest that she should make a contribution, and toutoring the tough subjects like math and science will pay her far more than most of the everyday choices out there. So, mini al work hours teaching something that is easy for her and the reward of helping someone in the process. Win/win!

Anonymous said...

I think if your sister is interested in majoring in science, it is hard to work more than 7-8 hours a week. There are a lot of labs that occur weekly in addition to classes. My organic chemistry lab was 6 hours a week, in addition to class time. I think another poster mentioned the 9/11 compensation fund, and while I don't know the specifics of it (or your situation), I would think that paying for education with it would be good thing. Sorry if I'm overstepping my bounds.