Back from two weeks in Italy and suffering serious jet lag. I woke up at 5am and wasn’t able to go back to sleep so I came into the office. What a productive little employee I am! Many more posts on the honeymoon later.
Did you miss me? I know my dad did. He asked me yesterday why I had stopped blogging. 1) I had spotty internet access. 2) I was on my honeymoon. 3) I got plain damn lazy. But I’m back. Shout out to my dad for reading my blog. Hi Dad!
It’s Money Monday post-Italy so today I’m going to relay a story from a dinner we had in Positano.
A family of three (dad, mom, and college-aged daughter) was sitting behind us having a serious discussion. Here’s what I overheard.
Daughter: I’m upset because you’re making me out to be a bad person. I’m not a bad person for wanting, for asking for these things. A new computer is not a big deal.
Mother: You just bought a couch.
Daughter: Mom, I use that. I use that every day. I needed that.
Mother: What about all the charges on your credit card from Urban Outfitters?
Daughter: Clothing is not a big deal. I’m going to get a job when I graduate. If there’s a shirt I want, I’m going to buy it. It’s not expensive. It’s Urban Outfitters!
Mother: (in hushed tones) Your spending is out of control. It has got to stop.
Daughter: No it’s not. Stop making me out to be a bad person.
Father: That’s it. From now on, we’re going to have to set boundaries on your spending.
I have several observations about this exchange. The daughter is not at fault. Yeah, her spending is out of control, but it seems like her parents had never done anything about it. The parents are enablers. Enablers are the guilty party.
The situation had clearly deteriorated so much that the mother felt she had to pull an intervention. Now? How many credit card statements later? What an idiot. And the dad talking about setting boundaries. Again I ask. Now? You’re going to set boundaries after your daughter has spent the better part of her childhood spending frivolously? Shame on her parents for not being more disciplined to begin with.
Also, someone needs to set this girl’s head straight. She said she was going to get a job after college. Has she read a single news article about the state of our economy? There are professionals with years of experience who are jobless. I may be wrong about her, though. If she’s an engineer or computer science major she probably will get a job right away. But then again, I don’t think those types shop at Urban Outfitters—if they shop at all.