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Am I reading this wrong?

Posted by wallypog (My Page) on
Tue, Jun 16, 09 at 14:24

The situation with my SS is sad. He determined long ago how to manipulate his mom and has wormed himself into a life of non accomplishment. Now at 19 he is entering the real world at a huge deficit. Now DW knows she has made his situation worse by babying him but I do not think she grasps how much she does so. Case in point.

Yesterday SS and I got into a verbal bout over a chore he failed to accomplish for the 3rd time over a period of about 2 weeks. The 19 y/o male left the house and refused to come home because "he was tired of being yelled at" (as he told his mom). So I get the cold treatment from the DW. I ask her, "what would you have done?"

So she says, "first off I would not have asked him to do something he has not done by himself before".

Stop right there and think about that comment.

Do you think I asked the 19 y/o healthy male to rebuild the engine in the Subaru? Maybe I asked him to paint the trim on the house or install a garage door opener? The chore in question was to bury a 1/2 inch sprinkler line in the dirt. This was not 32 feet of 1/2 inch sprinkler line that needed to be buried. This was about 15 inches of 1/2 inch sprinkler line that needed to be reburied. All he needed to do was to dig a little tiny ditch and bury a 1/2 inch sprinkler line. I ended up doing it. It took 10 minutes and a screw driver (used for digging).

Am I off base? Does DW not see how much she allows this kid ( young man) to milk her sympathy? The other end of that conversation had to be: "But Mom I never did that before and did not know what to do and the mean Man YELLED at me".


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Am I reading this wrong?

I don't know. I am 28 years old and would not have a clue how to bury a sprinkler line.

Then again, I am just not the "yardwork" kind of girl. I like to cook and clean, do laundry, etc. (well, not LIKE, but these are things I feel I AM good at.) When it comes to yardwork/manual labor I am just not so good.

Did you show SS how to do it, or explain to him how to do it? I can understand him not knowing what to do---but it does sound like maybe he is using that as an excuse to simply get out of doing it.


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RE: Am I reading this wrong?

My nephew is this way, he got a bit better lately, now when there are no jobs available my brother pays him to do yard work. You are not off base unless he legitimatelly does not know hot od it (in this case you could show him) he needs to be able to do it. he is just lazy. is he in college?


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RE: Am I reading this wrong?

I suspect there are many other issues -- but I wouldnt have know how to bury. I would have asked how deep, what do I use, are there any gas lines here, how wide a cut do I make in the grass? do I put sod back, do I water afterwards. Its tough to start with a 19YO. When you start with younger, like 10, it starts with watch me (which they are more than willing to do), then help me, then go do.


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RE: Am I reading this wrong?

I know how to bury a sprinkler line.... And if I didn't know, I'd ask!

I think the issue is that your DW enables SS to not take action, not that SS is an inherently terrible person.
So, maybe a happy medium for you would be to say "Hey, SS, please bury the sprinkler line. Have you ever done it before? No? OK, it's really easy, I'll show you." and then leave him to the task once you put the trowel in his hand and showed him how deep to dig.

It's frustrating when your spouse doesn't see eye to eye with you on child-rearing, hey?


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RE: Am I reading this wrong?

I have been with this youngster for 5 years. Anything he does not want to do is conveniently beyond his ability. His Mom found him a high school where he did not have to do homework (as in NONE). This little project was maybe a 3 inch deep hole about 18 inches long (in dirt, no lawn to deal with) and I was there the entire time if that was too confusing. Rakes are just as confounding, as are brooms. And, yes, he had actually done it before.

But give the guy a Playstation 3 and he can hook it up and program it into a 5/1, A/V rig. He is real smart when he wants to be.


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RE: Am I reading this wrong?

Good can he tell me how to secure my wireless network ... i do not have any instructions for the router and it has a passcode on it that I cannot remember !!! (ha)


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RE: Am I reading this wrong?

I dont know where you live, but where I live, there are "geek squad" people -- I think run out of bestbuy -- if he is qualified, why not suggest he try there for a job.


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RE: Am I reading this wrong?

I agree with wallypog... this has nothing to do with not knowing how to bury a sprinkler line (who doesn't know how to bury something in the dirt??). It sounds like he is just being lazy... and I am sure that if there was something that HE wanted done, he would find a way to do it (e.g. connecting the playstation!).


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RE: Am I reading this wrong?

For what it's worth, I've found holding the computer mouse hostage to be a very effective motivator.
Of course if your son has a laptop and you have wireless Internet, your leverage is limited...

Sure, he could figure out how to bury a sprinkler line if he wanted to --
but he doesn't.


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RE: Am I reading this wrong?

not if you take the router to work with you :)

thats what I do when I say no internet ... the router and wires come with me.


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RE: Am I reading this wrong?

Yes, the portable router!

Disciplining kids of today has become interesting.... they are instructed on how to call CPS on their parents from an early age... the parents indulge them with computers, ipods, game systems and fancy cell phones...

then we wonder why they don't want to cut the grass or bury a sprinkler line!

I had to bring home a few moving boxes and box tape one time so my son would get the message that if his room was not clean ASAP, he was moving out... and I was helping him!

When he was on the family cell plan, I could suspend his phone from their website... you want your phone? when the grass is cut!

I don't like taking the blame for it, but they were raised by an inconsistent mother in a world of over indulgence and electronic gadgets... their world is so different from the one I grew up in! (and so is parenting!)


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RE: Am I reading this wrong?

If a cat can figure out how to bury a turd, then I think this kid can figure out how to bury 15" of a sprinkler pipe!


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RE: Am I reading this wrong?

Lazy lazy lazy!
Do you suppose that skids just use there "situation" to be more lazy than they really should be? I mean there are times that every kids is lazy and doesn't want to do something for some reason or another, but it sure would seem like some skids use their "broken family" status as a crutch to be lazy, unmotivated, and the whole "poor me" attitude to its fullest. Oh! and to blame others for everything under the sun. That sh*t gets old real fast!

Burying a sprinkler sure isn't rocket science. No where near.... and we constantly tell our kids...if you don't understand something, then ask!!!!!


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RE: Am I reading this wrong?

Yup i agree! LAAAAAAAAAAAZY!!!! and i'm sure the touch of attitude, you can't tell me what to do ! I'm going to complain to mommy!!! GROW UP!
Hay, there is a little thing called googling when someone doens't know somethign to find out.:)

Yes, disciplining kids these days is complex because its not like it use to be. BUT my hubby and i stand firm. No cell phones for the kids. ABSOLUTELY NOT! games are privilages...i can take it apart and place it in the closet. etc..etc..NO ipods. No electronic expensive gizmoze...sorry, get a job and get it yourself.


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RE: Am I reading this wrong?

they qickly learn how to do XYZ when they are on their own. i had hard time making DD do chores beyond the very basic ones, now when she on her own she does everything nicely, she even cooks, and actually yelled at me for not putting stuff away in her apartment when i visit and not recycling properly (she recycles everything). LOL no more: CLEAN YOUR ROOM. haha


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RE: Am I reading this wrong?

Fabulous Gerina!


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RE: Am I reading this wrong?

Thanks for the feedback. I have no doubt that the kid is lazy, etc. He has a constellation of wonderful things he does to push my buttons. My frustration is with the Mrs. If the boy can't come up with any excuse to not do something then she actually helps him find one.


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RE: Am I reading this wrong?

wallypog, that is too bad about your wife aiding in his button pushing of you. I don't think I could stick around in a situation like that. Someone would get hurt lol.


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