Folksy Ltd

To parents of graduates/adult children

(Sarah Eves) #1

…what happens when they are flat broke, not working at an interim/local job and applying for dream jobs nationwide - then get interviews which involve hotel accommodation, £168 train fares and the need for hotel accommodation overnight?
With the possibility of being called back - at the same expense - the following week???

I’m seeing a pattern emerging with my 22 year old son, but it’s got the potential to run into thousands if it takes a year or so to get a job.
He’s not looking for anything within Wales and that’s fine, but money is tight and I’m starting to feel resentful about having to fund all the travel expenses.
And the guilt of feeling resentful.

So - to parents of graduates/adult children - where do you draw the line???
Because I don’t remember it being like this when I was growing up!!!

Sarah x

(Shirley Woosey) #2

I drew the line when they left college and went to University.
From then on they both funded themselves.
I was happy for them to return home to live but board HAD to be paid.
If they claimed dole (which neither did) then they would have had to stump up half of it to me.
They both took jobs like MacDonalds, shelf stacking etc until they got jobs in their chosen careers.
They both paid me £30 per week board (this was between 10 and 7 years ago, so would be higher now)

Travelling costs etc for interviews was paid for by themselves.

My son used his 21st birthday present money from us and grandparents to fund a 6 week course in London to do Computer Engineering and has never looked back since.

Shirley x

(Roz) #3

Its hard because you naturally want to help and support them all you can but I think Shirley @WhimsyWooDesigns has it right. I remember having to pay keep to my father even when I had holiday jobs at the age of 16, never a great amount but just a gesture at least. Trouble is its not so easy with your own children - I’m sure I’ve drawn the line many times but keep giving in! My eldest is off to Uni next month and I have decided a budget for her - I keep telling myself students are meant to be poor and if I keep giving her more she will never bother to get a job! She was after a car last night and while I am happy to help I have said she will not be getting one until she has a job that can pay for the insurance and running costs.

(Sarah Eves) #4

I sometimes feel if there’s a sense of entitlement with this generation that wasn’t there before.

As @Rozcraftz said - I also remember paying keep to my parents when I was a still a teenager and was working to fund travel abroad.
And also in the interim times, when I was claiming dole for a few weeks between travelling, I still paid rent, but it was only ever a short time arrangement - as soon as I was working I moved out, each and every time.

I just don’t understand my son anymore.
University seems to have given him a sense of entitlement.
And my own parents, while very strict while I was growing up, aren’t helping by bailing my son out.
They think I should be glad that he’s applying for jobs - which I am - but, as Shirley says - I don’t feel I should be funding the travel costs nationwide if he isn’t saving through an interim job.

Sarah x

(Rachel) #5

Hi, if the job centre are involved you can ask them for a form to claim expenses. Your local parish council also might have a fund that would help them apply for such as a rail card etc. Has your son asked if he can claim expenses against the company he is having the interview with? Also there are funds available to apply for if you are rural or there are no jobs in the area due to you being rural?

Try looking up the Directory of Social Change Grants for Individuals too, this might be available in your local library.

Good luck


(Sarah Eves) #6

We’re very rural, and I had no idea there were grants available.

Unfortunately he hasn’t signed on so the job centre aren’t involved.
My parents employ him one day a week at an inflated hourly rate, so he wouldn’t be eligible to sign on for unemployment benefit, but that’s a double-edged sword.
I wanted him to sign on at the job centre anyway, not to claim benefit but just to be on their books as looking for work, possibly to access grants to put towards interviews etc, but he refuses to go.

And I’m not sure they’d fund train fares to Scotland, but maybe they would?

(Pauline Hayward) #7

We had a similar problem with our son. He wanted to find work in a town which was 9 miles away from home but on an industrial estate which wasn’t easy to get to. He ended up going to the train station in a morning on his BMX so that at the other end he could go by bike the rest of the way. We ended up funding his train fares until he got a wage coming in. That ended after getting knocked off his bike and completely wrecked his Bike. He got a job a little closer to home but then needed bus fares. He then decided he had enough of public transport so decided he needed a car which we funded him for. He still is paying us off for all of these things but what’s changed is he’s now a dad to 2 beautiful girls and living in a rented house and guess what we put up the deposit and the first months rent. We find it hard to draw the line now we’ve got grandchildren to think about.
It certainly wasn’t like that when I was younger, we always worked on if we can’t afford it we can’t have it.


(Minerva) #8

Hhhmmm…if he is going to interviews outside Wales, shouldn’t the companies pay for all the expenses?! I worked in the corporate world for a number of years and that’s how I remember things being. Maybe he should be applying to companies that do pay?

(Sarah Eves) #9

I’m not sure he’s telling them the whole truth - Scotland is an improvement on last week - last week he got a call back from a company in AUSTRALIA because he’d told them he had dual citizenship (he hasn’t - his dad lives there, but although he has all the forms he’s never applied for citizenship) - and they assumed he was already out there!!!
And if he thought I’d fund an interview in Melbourne from Wales I’d have probably sent him out on a one-way ticket.

(Shirley Woosey) #10

Well I certainly couldn’t have afforded to fund my children once they left school for university.

This was always made quite clear to them. They are now 28 and 35 years old.

My views were that whilst they stayed on at school/college for the equivalent of A Levels they would not be expected to pay any board and could keep the wages from any part time jobs they had.

My son worked from being 13 years old, paper round, Saturday market job and from 16 years old at Makro shelf stacking until he went to University a month after his 18th birthday.
From the date he finished his A levels he worked full time at Makro including night shifts in order to fund his first year at University.

My daughter went to University locally but carried on working in her part time job in a Call Centre and paid us board out of those wages.

Whenever they have lived at home after the age of 18 they have always paid board.

There is no other way to prepare them for the big wide world of bills, mortgages and rent than by making them stand on their own two feet!

My daughter spent her coming of age money from us and grandparents on a car and driving lessons.
While learning to drive she saved up for the insurance.

Because he has mainly lived in London my son didn’t bother learning to drive until quite recently. He didn’t even tell us until after he had passed. He bought and paid for his own car but did ask his Dad to help him find a good one.

Shirley x

(Rachel) #11

Travel, what about a rail card doesnt that entitle you to cheaper fares albeit off peak?

(Minerva) #12

It sounds like your son could get himself into a lot of trouble and drag you into it too. If I were you, I would contact those companies you paid for the interviews to find out what their policy is. Obviously, you don’t have to mention your son as he might end up getting a job. But to find out if you did have to pay for those expenses. Due to my background, I find it very hard to believe that companies ask candidates to pay those big bills so they can go for an interview at a young age without a lot of previous work experience. If your son is not honest with you, then you need to draw a very big line there. If he is honest, then he needs to find out which companies pay for those bills and apply there or do other things to help out with those expenses now or later.

(Roz) #13

Seem to remember when I left Uni and was applying for jobs my travel was always paid for even if it was only a 50p bus ride. Things may have changed but I’d be surprised if nothing was on offer.

We live in a very rural area and my eldest daughters excuse for not getting a job is that it would cost me more in diesel to get her there than she would earn. She has a point as I do ferry my youngest to and from a job a 30min drive away so 1 hour round trip each way and it does cost me but I think its worth it for her to get experience and understand the work ethic.

(Kirstie Perry) #14

I have a 21 year old daughter, a 17 year old daughter and 6 year old son. Both of my daughters have worked from the age of 14. My eldest has paid me board since she has been working full time. We bought her a cheap run around car at the age of 17 as we have her for her sister, but both of them have had to work to pay for driving lessons, tax, insurance and fuel.
My 17 year old is planning to go to University next year and will have to work as we are not in a position to help her financially. She currently studies Music at college and works two part-time jobs to keep her car running and to pay for driving lessons.
I will expect the same from my son when he that age.
It is a hard world for them out there financially and I believe that they need to learn that for themselves.
Kirstie x

(Sarah Eves) #15

Thank you so much for all the responses - this is why I love the forum, it’s so supportive with so many things.

I’ve failed to install a work ethic into my son throughout teenage and uni - I tried carrot and stick, gentle persuasion, brutal honesty, but nothing worked.

So - I take some of the blame for his apparent sense of entitlement, I just hope that this time next year I won’t be here saying the same thing, and that he will actually be living in his own place with a full time job and our mother/son relationship will be back on track.

Uni’s been a rocky road, with an expensive price tag and a son resorting back to adolescence, but without the bonus of a new school term at the end of it!

Sarah x

(Shirley Woosey) #16

Sarah @thesherbetpatch my heart goes out to you.
It is hard and don’t blame yourself.

I had a rocky road with my youngest between the ages of 13 and 17, for various reasons although not to do with work.

You are going to have to use some “tough love” and it won’t just be him it’s tough on.
You are going to hurt a lot before it gets better but it WILL get better and in the end he will be grateful to you for it.

Shirley x

(Eileens Craft Studio) #17

Unfortuntantly many companies don’t pay out for interviewees to attend interviews in this economic climate they can’t afford to do it any more.

If it’s going for an interview you have to think if he goes he’s got a chance of getting the job if he doesn’t go no job therefore no chance of earning.

People have to go where the work is available and it’s much harder if you live miles from any where.

With his university degree the local supermarket won’t take him as they’ll say he’s over qualified and will be gone in 3months.

It’s tough for anyone looking for work at the moment but it’s worse for those who are miles from any where, it’s also hard for those who are just out of uni with no experience either and usually with university debts.

He might get lucky with this company in Scotland they might have a budget of some kind for travel expensive to the interview. But he’s then got the problem if he asks they can see that as a negative light. The only way he’ll know is if they ask him to fill in a claim form for their accounts department.

(Sarah Eves) #18

They know he’s coming from Wales and have not offered anything towards expenses - but they did find him a hotel - one they say is convenient for the office but which he has to pay for himself - at £80 a night!!!

Having researched online there are much cheaper hotels, but what do mothers know???

(Pauline Hayward) #19

They no best. There’s no telling them, they get something in their heads and nothing can shift it. Its as though they are blinkered.


(Eileens Craft Studio) #20

That will be one the company have on their approved list.

But that doesn’t mean he has to use it. He might find a cheaper one but then have to pay for travelling between hotel and the company. I’d do a google street thingie to see if cheaper one’s are in walking distance.