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17 Answers

Son works one night a week but he doesn’t have the WANT to work more yet with all the things he hoping to do in the coming Year eg. Schoolies, Snowboarding, Deb Partner – I have cut back on his expenses


Posted anonymously, 12th January 2020


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  • If you’re still paying him money to help with his life expenses, stop now! He’ll never be interested in working for money if you’re just handing it over, where’s the incentive there?


  • Perhaps he needs to start seeing the value in money more, I know at 17 I was pretty much independent so had bills to deal with and a car! I guess if he see no need to work more then there literally is no incentive. maybe start charging him rent and a small fee to cover his food, electricity and data?


  • Maybe have a frank discussion with him….wants and needs. Basic needs such as a roof over his head, food in his belly etc you cover the cost of while he is living in the family home….wants, then at 17 he needs to figure out a way to pay for them. I worked from 13, my parents covered my needs but my wants I paid for myself….it was an excellent life lesson in budgeting and saving and learning to appreciate what I had and what I had physically worked hard for to save and pay for.


  • If he has the opportunity to work more then I would agree to pay for some of the things he wants to do but if he doesn’t contribute he doesn’t get to do them. Its a life lesson..


  • Sorry, I don’t know how to answer that question – my children started working for extra money to buy those things I couldn’t afford for them when they were 12 – doing odd jobs for neighbours and mowing lawns etc. At around 15 they became checkout operators at our local supermarket and worked every shift they could get. Somewhere along the way, they decided to save and each one had enough money for a car by the time they were legally able to get their licence. We struggled to pay for their schooling and to feed and clothe them and I guess they saw we struggled, so they did their own bit. Only one income and 4 children, so that income had to stretch 6 ways and all you mums know how much growing children consume foodwise.
    But we got there and I am extremely proud of all my children.


  • Possibly have a family meeting and discuss any changes in what you pay for. Let them know your concern about what their activities will cost and what you’re willing to contribute. They may not have made the connection. Or assume you will pay the difference!


  • I remember getting a pre-paid phone that my mum made me work so I could pay for credit. She bought the groceries and necessities eg school supplies, but if there was something I wanted then I had to pay for it myself. I liked having my own money.


  • Maybe asking him to pay board so he starts learning to pay his way?


  • If he doesn’t want to work then he needs to more around the house UNPAID – labour intensive or endless jobs. For a short while anyway until he realises going to work more might be more beneficial to him


  • When I was 17 my mum only paid for food, basic necessities and school related items. I had to work for everything else


  • Just tell him if he wants to be able to do all things that cost money he needs to be able to contribute financially towards them. My son decided he now likes branded shoes, clothing, electronics so he got a job and works as many shifts as he can get his hands on – after his first payday he was hooked!! All part of growing up mate.


  • Yes I agree that at age 17 you may expect his contribution to the expenses he’s making. You can make an overview together about what goes in and what goes out and then come up with a realistic amount he will contribute. It will teach him financing skills and learn to prioritize.


  • Do you still get family tax benefit or does he get study allowance??
    If he doesn’t work at all, no luxuries. Definitely no schoolies.
    I never worked before I left school. My only out of school hours activity at his age was Girls Brigade which is similar to what Girl Guides which was a lot more expensive in general but we didn’t go on camps like they did either. We paid a weekly fee which covered some crafty things we did. If I knew my parents couldn’t afford extras I didn’t ask. I remember my Dad having to go to hospital a few times and running out of sick leave and holiday pay. There was a School Camp during that time. I didn’t even tell them about it.


  • He needs to work a few days/nights per week or yes cut his expenses. At his age you can’t pay for everything anymore.


  • Yes, I agree with the other MoM – you need to sit down and discuss it. At 17, he is of an age where he needs to realise the value of money, and that it doesn’t grow on trees. He obviously appreciates that concept to some degree or he wouldn’t be working at all …. but he needs to be aware of just how much the things he wishes to do cost, it may be a real eye opener for him and encourage to get more work to help rather than just expect you to pay. Good luck!


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