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Topic : 03/29 Next Generation of Moochers

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Created on : Friday, November 04, 2005, 02:48:17 pm
Author : DrPhilBoard3

(Original Air Date: 11/09/05) Meet the "Boomerang Generation" -- children who attend college and then move back in with their parents after leaving the nest, sometimes multiple times. -- you can put a period at nest and delete sometimes multiple times.  Then, Kirsten, 36, has a great education but has depended on her family to take care of her for the last 18 years, and she's still living at home with her parents.  -- change to: Then, Kirsten, 36, has a great education but has depended on her family for the last 18 years, and she's still living at home with her folks.  Share your thoughts.


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March 30, 2006, 12:50 am CST

03/29 Next Generation of Moochers

Quote From: lmystic28

I am a 28-year old and I live with my parents. I have a college degree. My last year of college, I moved home to pay off my bills and find a what I thought was a better job which I suceeded. I found a house and began exciting move to be on my own.  Unfortunately, the job was not as  great as I planned. I was moved to a danerous neighborhood and forced to work by myself  in a retail setting with no staff at allI tried everything I knew to do to make my employment situation better with this particular company, I asked to be transferred I tried to move up in company to a better suited field.  I tried to go back to school but because of the demanding schedules and the dependency, the company had to me, I didn't.  

I ended up quitting when I wasn't even able to search for other jobs. I am currently unemployed and spending most of my days on job hunts, interviews etc.  My parents want me to go back to school on them.  Of course I will not let that happen! I will pay also.  Since I have been home I have offered them money, and I cook and I help them with everyday chores because I am so grateful that they would let me come back home until I finally get out on my own.  I want to move out but I want to do it right. I don't want to move out knowing I can't afford it and end up homeless. Is that bad? 

Not really.  If you are genuinely wanting to be on your own--if that is your ultimate intent, but you have legitimate setbacks, then no, you're not a moocher.   


However, you are in a position which you can fall under the pattern of one.  Just don't let that happen and be diligent in achieving your goals, okay? 

March 30, 2006, 12:53 am CST

03/29 Next Generation of Moochers

Quote From: hadassah05

I am 34 and have had more than one emotional breakdown in the past several years.  I do live with my mom still because I cannot afford anything else!

...then you're not a moocher.  If you are absolutely beyond your means, then you're not a moocher.   


Don't resent the term in fear of it applying to you if it truely doesn't apply to you.   


However, you should work towards autonomy whether it be with your parents, friends, other family, financial advisors, and social workers if that's what it takes. 

March 30, 2006, 1:09 am CST

03/29 Next Generation of Moochers

Quote From: mogawaii

I am a 38 year old who has a 36 year old brother that is the mooch.  Our mother passed away 22 months ago, before she died she asked me to look out for him.  "he is not as strong as you are" she said.  Well he has been living in my house for 14 months now, not working, he is attending technical college but has a year to go before he is finished.  He was injured on the job January  2001, and has not worked since.  Before mom died she gave him her entire social security check to pay his bills while she lived with me and I paid for everything.  I would not take her money because I wanted her to be able to spend it on herself, she only got $550.00.  I also helped him with bills so that he could stay in his apartment.  After mom died I just couldn't keep up the extra $1100.00 each month. 


I am now working 80-104 hours a week to stay even with the bills because of my brother.  I no longer have savings because I have spent it all on him.  If he doesn't stay with me he is homeless.  As his only living relative I can't just give him the boot but I also can't keep up the schedule I currently have.  Any suggestions? 



To use something that Dr. Phil has said every now and then: "That's enablement!" 


It is.  Seriously. 


There's a difference between helping someone and enabling them.   


Helping someone is providing assistance to them to achieve a positive goal when it's either beyond their means or if it just makes more sense to have help than to not have help. 


Enabling someone is providing assistance to maladaptive or self-destructive behavior--the most extreme being giving someone a bottle of pills or a gun to assist a suicide.   


Yes, I did read one of your responses, stating that he has an industrial injury and that insurance won't cover it.  In fact, I'll respond to this: 


Because his injury is so nebulous he isn't eligable for any disability assistance.  The best that I can do is get him through school so that he can support himself again.  That was a fairly hard sell  

I really find it interesting that prior to this injusry he was a good worker and had pride in his job.  Now each day is a struggle.  I understand what long-term injuries are like I have a spinal injury that has plagued me for 18 years.  I hurt nearly everyday but get up and keep going, nobody owes me a living I have to be willing to go get it.  Why doesn't he see it this way?  My mother did.  


It's easy to use any kind of setback, regardless of its degree, as an excuse, or to even feel sorry for yourself because of it.  I know it's easy for someone like me to say that since I've never had it happen (the closest thing to that was having a third-degree burn on my leg when I was nine years old from boiling water).   


In fact, when I was in grade school, I saw a little boy who was born with only one finger and a thumb on his right hand play Nintendo with his elbow!  I thought that was pretty ****ing amazing.  He didn't feel sorry for himself, saying "I can't play this game."  He did it anyway.   


Perhaps your brother is affected by your mother's passing to a point of halting his own life.  For that reason, he probably needs to talk to someone, like a counselor, about his feelings and to come up with ways to cope with this as well as get on his feet and stay in school (the very schooling that you're funding for him, at that).  He also needs to have a purpose, an ultimate goal, for his schooling.  Going to school for a purpose is a far more motivating force than going to school just to go to school.   

March 30, 2006, 1:20 am CST

03/29 Next Generation of Moochers

Quote From: deslocum

I have a 24 year old daughter that lives with her dad and her dad completely supports her, cleans up after her and, even after a long day at work, cooks supper for her and sometimes even for her boyfriend (27 former Marine).  She is a pig and leaves her clothes all over the house.  She dropped out of college after 2 years with some mental issues and has been going to a doctor for over 4 years now.  She has been on all kinds of drugs, legal and not so legal.  Her dad keeps saying she will get better soon.  I moved out of the house 2 years ago because I can't stand how she  lives.  I would love to move back in with my husband and get her out and on her own.  But he doesn't want to confront her because he is afraid it will make her mad.  Also, we have a 21 year old that is not too much better.  At least she goes to school still but will not get a job to help with expenses.  I know it is our fault as parents for not expecting more and now we do not know what to do.  The story on Dr. Phil's show sounds just like our story to some degree.  We need help!!
Quote From: unclemtl

Let me get this straight. You have a daughter who has a mental illness, which you don't seem to know what it is since you didn't mention it, and you moved out of the house because of the way she lives her life. WOW! What a self-centered uncaring person you are. If your daughter does have a mental illness it's like any other illness and she needs your support as a mother.  


Your daughter coming back to live with you because she has a mental illness does not make her a moocher, it means she's looking for help, support, and guidance. Now, I'm not saying her being untidy is acceptable, this is probably something that needs to be addressed but, for a mother to leave her daughter when she is ill, I really don't know what to say....  





Quote From: jen0203 


 I have to say I disagree with James on this I dont think just because your daughter has a mental illness that gives her the right to take over your house. Having a mental illness is not an excuse to drop out of college and decide that she isnt going to do anything but have your husband wait on her. I would tell her to get a job and get out!! 


This one's kinda touchy, so it's hard to take an affirmative stance here.   


If you don't know whether your daugher (or your 21 year old that you mentioned) has undisputed mental illnesses or arbitrary mental "issues" then you need to get them into counseling and get a formal diagnosis.  If you want to help them so badly, then break out the phone book and start calling around THE MOMENT you see this response.  They need individual counseling, and you all as a family need family counseling to learn how to cope with this because running away from the problem by moving out is not the answer (nor is your husband enabling your 24 year old the answer either--I understand why he does it--he doesn't want to hurt her feelings, provoking a reaction from her, but I think Dr. Phil mentioned at one time that doing so is selfish--he cares more about his own emotions than his daughter's well-being).

March 30, 2006, 1:34 am CST

03/29 Next Generation of Moochers

Quote From: nickam

I too have two adult sons that have moved back home.  Their ages are 24 and 26.  They are home working and going to college.  When they both moved back home they brought heavy credit card debts with them.  I would love to figure out  a way to help them get back on their feet so that they can move back out.  I would like to find a way to help them without enabling them.  I do not want to loan money or cosign for loans.  I am sure there are other parents out there with the same situation.  I would welcome suggestions on how to help get them back out.  I do not want to just put them on the curb knowing that they are struggling to pay off the debts that they created when they were on their own before.

I moved back home at one time because I got laid off from a job.  However, I had some debt, which was caused by my own stupidity (not necessarily because of the layoff), and tried to save up money to pay off my own debts.  However, moving back out, and not learning from my mistakes the first time, I've driven myself to roughly $50,000 in debt!  Yep, this is just me.  Not me and a spouse.  Not me and children.  Just me!   


Some of my debt is legitimate: vehicle, student loans, mobile home.  Others is just plain stupidity: credit cards, bank account driven to negative balance and having a collection against me.  I do have adult ADD and as a result, poor impulse control, but that's no excuse.  What I'm doing is getting help for the ADD, poor impulse control, and I also filed for Chapter 13 bankruptcy.  Yes, bankruptcy sucks (I couldn't get a home with my cousin because of it and my resulting credit score), but I look at it this way: 

- Live with it the next 7-10 years (and make sure it doesn't happen again--after all, it is taxpayer dollars paying for bankruptcies) 


- Live with my debt for the rest of my life, into marriage and children, and into grandchildren. 


Anyway, depending on how much debt they do have, I would suggest putting them through financial management courses and perhaps have them go through credit counseling.  If their debt is as massive as mine, bankruptcy might be the only practical way out (and will practically destroy their credit, but they did this to themselves--as Dr. Phil says: "you choose your actions, you choose your consequences"), but again, make sure they do get help for whatever compelled them to get into that much debt in the first place--otherwise, any kind of help you give them might end up becoming a form of enablement.   


Even bankruptcy might be difficult--they won't qualify for Chapter 7 if they don't have enough secured debt under the new laws, and the new laws actually REQUIRE them to go through an approved financial management course.   

March 30, 2006, 1:56 am CST

03/29 Next Generation of Moochers

Quote From: ddgirl

Well I am 21 years old, I have been living on my own for 3 years now, my mom has letting go issues  


When I was 14 she decided to drop me off to live with my dads, and work in the usa so she can make enough to buy a house when she was finish working in the states about 3 years later I was not interested in moving in with her.   


Then at 18 I went out and moved out on my own because I felt like I did not belong in the family, and that I was tired of being in the shadow of my younger sister,   

my sister is 18 years old your basically perfect child, straight As, getting scholarships for track and field and academics to almost any school she wants in canada and the usa.   

and my mom has the constant annoying and manipluative way of keep pressuring me to move back home, when I have no intentions of moving back home because I am tried of being in my little sister sucessful shadow.   


I know me moving out on my own at 18 was not really the best planned out idea I had at the time, but it was the only way I could get my own indenty and find out who I am as a person, now 21 years old working on getting adult education programs to join into the midwifery program at one of the community universities, and my mom still thinks I am 12 years with no clues about life or respect the fact I pay all my bills, and support myself, threw stress and success all by myself  

Everytime I see my mom it is a constant argument "You should move back home, save up then move out" its like her way of telling me I messed up come back home so I can start over.   

When I know she did the best she could, to raise me to be a young adult, Can dr phil help my mom understand that I have left the ness and I need her move on to being a mom with an young adult child.   


It's like she does not want to admit I moved out, and learning things for myself.  

and I really feel that I give in and move back home, my mom will basically push me away to move out again and if I have to do it the second time I will not talk to her again or if she continues to push me to move back home I feel that I have to cut off all communication with my mom all together.   

What you probably need to do is ask yourself if this is EXACTLY where you want to be with your life.  


If so, great!  You need to communicate with your mother that you have chosen your path in life, that you are willing to accept ALL the positive AND ALL the negatives of it, that you are aware of the positives and negatives, and that you have the coping skills necessary for an adult to deal with this.   


If you can't say that in all honesty to your mother, then you may want to admit that to your mother.   


You also need to ask yourself which of these reasons weigh more: 

a) you moved out because you have a set path in your life that you need to pursue 


b) you moved out in spite of your mother and sister 


If it's a), then good for you!  Just keep at it.  Actions speak louder than words.  Once you are in the midwifery program and you are happy with it, tell your mother about your successes.  If you are telling the entire story here on this message board, then it seems like your mother only has one yardstick to measure success by, and that's your sister.  Your mother needs to know that success has many faces to it (and failure does as well).   


If it's b), then you're doing this for ENTIRELY the wrong reasons.  Many people have moved out of home in spite of their family (my sister being one of them...she moved out at 12:00 midnight on her 18th birthday--although she's married to someone from the Air Force who supports her, perhaps to the point of enablement, she has no intention on going back to school or getting a job that is relevant to her potential).  I'm not necessarily saying taking up your mom on her offer is the answer, but perhaps it's an option if you both consider having a mediator or counselor present to discuss each others issues.   If the center of the issues revolve around your sister, then maybe she needs to be present as well.   

March 30, 2006, 2:41 am CST

03/29 Next Generation of Moochers

Quote From: frisco1959

Even more so than some physical illnesses, because it is "hidden".  There are no blood tests for schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and clinical depression.  I thought I was "lazy" when I could not keep up the housework and was exhausted after work.   


Please, just because you're lucky enough NOT to experience these diseases, don't disparage those who suffer from them.  Suicide often seems the only way out as a way of escaping years of side effects from endless medications, time lost from work and constant depression. 

...and don't alienate people that have not been down that road either.  That's elitism and that solves nothing. 


I've actually taken Lexapro for depression, but it really didn't help.  The reason it didn't help was that I actually have ADD, not really depression, although I had depression-like symptoms (including suicide ideations when I was a teenager) because they were actually a reaction to my "failures" resulting from ADD.   

March 30, 2006, 2:52 am CST

03/29 Next Generation of Moochers

Quote From: geeze_us

 dear dr phil,
   i understand you are not an expert in faith; but you do help fill in the gaps of others lives...please help fill in their gaps completely by directing them to their faith...there is an understanding there that you also agree that you can not fill...teach them to they may be fisherman...don't just give them ur answer to their issues...eventhough they ask...they truely r searching for something more...bring the TRUE sanity back in2 their lives...

...that would be an abuse of his theraputical position, and could cause some legal issues.   


I, myself, wouldn't have a problem with Dr. Phil redirecting people to their faith, but again, that would be biased, and therapy needs to be from a neutral point of view. 

March 30, 2006, 2:57 am CST

03/29 Next Generation of Moochers

Quote From: urrutiap

Hi I just watched today's episode about adult children living back home and I just want to say I live at home too but I dont sit around. I have reasons why I live back home.  


1. Rent is really high in some places and I dont have the money to move out  in a flash  

2. I got out of community tech school 2 years ago and still looking for work. 


I get a little upset when women hear that you live at home well its their loss if they cant deal with us living back home.  Maybe they should let us move in with them then that wouldnt be a problem. 


Now about the topic of adult children and trying to get back on their feet. I have been doing alot such as looking for jobs online and in the local newspaper and it is tough since theres not much put in the papers for jobs but I dont give up I just keep on looking even for a cheap apartment like based on your income. 600 bucks to a thousand bucks monthly for an apartment is just too much 

I lived in a one-bedroom apartment at one time for $325/month.  It wasn't a **** hole, either.  It was actually pretty nice.   


I think it really depends on your area.  It sounds like you might need to move, but then again, you almost have to look for a steady job and a place to live simultaneously, and your fall-back plan (your family) would be too far away.   

March 30, 2006, 3:04 am CST

03/29 Next Generation of Moochers

Quote From: flthomcat

The parents should have been up on stage, not the "kids." As the good doctor says, people treat you the way you teach them to treat you. Any normal young person will take the easy way and mooch if they are allowed to....why not?....warm bed, free food, television, phone, nurse, maid service, etc. It is up to RESPONSIBLE parents to insist their "children" become responsible adults.  


Contrary to all the bull on this boards, workers are needed across the country, but young adults have been spoiled and want everything handled to them. (and DON'T want to start at the bottom the way our parents did). They don't want to have to work hard and yes, SUFFER at times. Things don't always come start at the bottom, work hard, go without and eventually make it to the top (where things will be easier and more comfortable).  


I taught (in a public H.S.) this young generation that is now taking advantage of their silly parents and expect things to be handed to them. Sorry, but that's not real life and these parents are doing you a disservice by not letting you find out what the real world is all about.  


I worked 37 hours weekly THRU college, paid my own rent, insurance (etc) and didn't have lots of $$$ to spend on the fun stuff (clothing, parties, eating out, etc). I ate chipped beef on toast almost daily during college so I could save money. I worked hard, stayed clean, voted in every election and went on to marry a great man (16+ years ago), now have two responsible children who know how to give back to society and I now am able to be a stay-at-home mother and help keep this family healthy, happy and productive.  


Parents need to WAKE UP and stop harming their children by being "nice." Nice doesn't help them to become productive, responsible, mature members of society. It keeps them slaves. 

I don't think faulting one entity is the solution here. 


Parents do share some of the blame for enabling their children.  Often they do so for different reasons: 

1) They suffered physically, mentally, and/or emotionally themselves, and don't want their children to do the same.  However, the enablement turns that into a self-fulling prophecy: the parents end up CAUSING the suffering that they're trying to prevent.  Spoiling can actually be a form of neglect.   

2) They're so kind that they want to be their children's "friend."  In doing so, they enforce that child-like behavior is okay for life.   

3) They feel too guilty about punishing their children for doing things that are wrong that they decide not to punish them at all, or the punishment ends up being too light. 


Children, of course, have blame as well because they are human--they can choose their own paths in life.  You choose your actions, you choose your consequences.   

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