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Old 11-17-2010, 12:46 PM
 
2 posts, read 2,129 times
Reputation: 13

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I apologize in advance for this long post. I am a divorced parent of a 22 year old daughter who against my judgement decided to move away to college when she was 18. I argued against this because the money her Father and I had invested for this, along with what her grandparents could add, only totaled $30,000.00 and would not be enough to pay for college and her room and board. She had worked hard to save some money herself during grade 12 and insisted that she would continue to work part-time during college to afford this. This child has always been very willfull and independant, so my arguement of not wanting her to have to work so she could concentrate on school, fell on deaf ears. Now it is four years later and she is almost finished but, as predicted, in order to survive she has had to take out student loans. Over the last year or so she has mentioned that it hasn't been a piece of cake to work and go to school and that her grades probably would have been better if she hadn't had to. To help out her Father has been sending her $200.00 monthly. I expressed mixed feelings about him doing this because although she hasn't lived extravagantly, during these fours years she has travelled to Europe and Panama City, along with several other small trips for a choir that she belongs to. I expressed Motherly concern about her judgement re taking these trips when she should be working and setting aside money for school, but wanted to respect her decisions as an adult. Recently my Father died and left me a little money. I am self-employed and planned to invest this money because I have no pension. Yesterday she called me crying because unlike her friends, she is unable to go immediately into a post-graduate program and must work to pay off the loans. She feels that I should pay them off for her. She claims she feels like she's being punished for deciding to go away for school, I feel like the loan and restricted lifestyle is a consequence of her original decision. When she first started school, there was no way I could help her. Now my business is doing a little better. Should I give her a little money monthly, should I pay off her loan or should I let her work it out for herself?
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Old 11-17-2010, 12:55 PM
 
Location: somewhere
4,264 posts, read 8,282,736 times
Reputation: 3159
I will probably get slammed for this, but she needs to take care of these herself, both yourself and her father provided for her to go to college and she chose to go where it was more expensive. If you had money to burn I would be more prone to say yes, but since the money you recently came into is for your retirement that is what it should be for. Guess what some people don't get to go into graduate school right away, some actually have to wait. If the college she chose was the only one she could go to my answer maybe different but it wasn't and she didn't plan properly. Of course I am the mean mom who made my kids pay for their own college just like their father did for his education. So you can take my response with a grain of salt if you want.
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Old 11-17-2010, 01:04 PM
 
Location: In a house
13,253 posts, read 37,504,416 times
Reputation: 20198
I'd probably compromise, at this point. But I'd do so only if the daughter understand that you are in no way, at all, even remotely responsible for her debts. You didn't choose to create them, you're not obligated to pay them. She chose to go to Europe instead of saving up.

HOWEVER: I think it's great that she had that experience of going to Europe with her choir. I think this was an important part of her education. I also think that when a person has the opportunity to live away from home after High School, they should take that opportunity and be grateful for it. Even if dad has to help out with the finances every month. The experience is important for its own sake.

What I'd do - is send a check directly to her loan account to cover the next couple of months' worth of payments, and tell your daughter she now has a few months' "reprieve" to save up so she can afford the rest of it. I wouldn't give her any money - she's an adult now, she has to learn to make or break on her own. I'd let her know in advance - that she isn't entitled to this money, that you'd doing it because you're proud of her accomplishments thus far and you want to see her succeed, and this is a STEP in the direction of success. SHE has to take the other steps. That's her job now.

Let her know you ARE proud of her. She graduated college - with a bit of financial help of course, but she's the one who worked and went to school, and pushed through it and came out the other side. This is a big deal. Many kids can't handle the pressure these days, because there's more pressure now than ever before.

In summary: don't give HER money. She's shown that she can earn her own money and can figure out how to manage her own budget, if given the chance. But do apply a few payments to her loan, directly to the loan company, as a gesture of pride from her mom and encouragement to continue growing and thriving as an adult.
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Old 11-17-2010, 01:06 PM
 
Location: NE Oklahoma
1,036 posts, read 2,698,221 times
Reputation: 1083
Quote:
Originally Posted by RZgal View Post
I apologize in advance for this long post. I am a divorced parent of a 22 year old daughter who against my judgement decided to move away to college when she was 18. I argued against this because the money her Father and I had invested for this, along with what her grandparents could add, only totaled $30,000.00 and would not be enough to pay for college and her room and board. She had worked hard to save some....

She claims she feels like she's being punished for deciding to go away for school, I feel like the loan and restricted lifestyle is a consequence of her original decision. When she first started school, there was no way I could help her. Now my business is doing a little better. Should I give her a little money monthly, should I pay off her loan or should I let her work it out for herself?

She knew what the budget for her education was upon entering college. She made the decision to go to a more expensive school against YOUR wishes. Allow her to feel the consequences of her actions. She got herself into this, she can get herself out. Stick to your guns and keep YOUR money. You will need it when you retire, believe me.
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Old 11-17-2010, 01:16 PM
 
1,423 posts, read 4,746,866 times
Reputation: 1936
No, you should not pay off her loan. You must take care of your own security first and foremost. I heard a financial adviser give this specific advice to the same scenario.
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Old 11-17-2010, 01:21 PM
 
345 posts, read 421,762 times
Reputation: 236
Quote:
Originally Posted by RZgal View Post
I apologize in advance for this long post. I am a divorced parent of a 22 year old daughter who against my judgement decided to move away to college when she was 18. I argued against this because the money her Father and I had invested for this, along with what her grandparents could add, only totaled $30,000.00 and would not be enough to pay for college and her room and board. She had worked hard to save some money herself during grade 12 and insisted that she would continue to work part-time during college to afford this. This child has always been very willfull and independant, so my arguement of not wanting her to have to work so she could concentrate on school, fell on deaf ears. Now it is four years later and she is almost finished but, as predicted, in order to survive she has had to take out student loans. Over the last year or so she has mentioned that it hasn't been a piece of cake to work and go to school and that her grades probably would have been better if she hadn't had to. To help out her Father has been sending her $200.00 monthly. I expressed mixed feelings about him doing this because although she hasn't lived extravagantly, during these fours years she has travelled to Europe and Panama City, along with several other small trips for a choir that she belongs to. I expressed Motherly concern about her judgement re taking these trips when she should be working and setting aside money for school, but wanted to respect her decisions as an adult. Recently my Father died and left me a little money. I am self-employed and planned to invest this money because I have no pension. Yesterday she called me crying because unlike her friends, she is unable to go immediately into a post-graduate program and must work to pay off the loans. She feels that I should pay them off for her. She claims she feels like she's being punished for deciding to go away for school, I feel like the loan and restricted lifestyle is a consequence of her original decision. When she first started school, there was no way I could help her. Now my business is doing a little better. Should I give her a little money monthly, should I pay off her loan or should I let her work it out for herself?

If you are positive she would apply it to the loan how about giving her some as a Graduation Gift and not mentioning the loan at all.
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Old 11-17-2010, 01:22 PM
 
9,242 posts, read 7,250,539 times
Reputation: 11211
I'm in agreement with AnonChick. That sounds like a perfectly good compromise. I think it's a great thing that she chose to make her own way in the world at 18, and it seems like she's been successful at it.

It's a good idea to express your pride in her achievements this way. It's great that you chose to respect her decision regarding college and that she followed through. Going to Europe with her choir is not what I would consider a waste of her resources. She could have been partying, but it seems like she is responsible and level headed. I don't see anything wrong with helping her out a little.
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Old 11-17-2010, 01:27 PM
 
3,842 posts, read 9,542,678 times
Reputation: 3194
Quote:
Originally Posted by RZgal View Post
Yesterday she called me crying because unlike her friends, she is unable to go immediately into a post-graduate program and must work to pay off the loans. She feels that I should pay them off for her. She claims she feels like she's being punished for deciding to go away for school, I feel like the loan and restricted lifestyle is a consequence of her original decision. When she first started school, there was no way I could help her. Now my business is doing a little better. Should I give her a little money monthly, should I pay off her loan or should I let her work it out for herself?
I wouldn't harp on the past. It's done. She went to school and is earning a degree. No matter what, some of that should be commended regardless of background feelings on how it was accomplished.

What should be focused on is the future. What did/is she earning her undergrad in? Is she aware that she will need to take out loans for grad school? And that come 3-4yrs from now, she will probably owe double of what she owes now? More than likely will take 20-30yrs to pay off. I took out $25,000 for grad school & 10 yrs later still have about $4 left & that is w/ a 2.25% interest rate. It's taken forever b/c life happens in between & I've gotten married, bought a house, have children....

Is she also aware that the average age of many post grad programs are b/w 30-33yrs b/c many 22yr olds cannot afford to take on more debt or even qualify b/c they already have too much debt?

No, it's not for you to fund her grad school. It's not for you to pay off her loans. I hope to goodness sake no one cosigned on the loans, either.

Maybe sit w/ her & try to figure out a plan after school. If she seems to have a good plan in place, if you are able to help her out financially for a little bit while she gets acclimated, go for it. I would definitely make sure that the $$ you give her is for specific needs, not just a blank check.

My parents never handed over the checkbook to me, but they also made sure that when it was evident that I was trying very hard but did need some financial assistance, they helped out. And I am endlessly appreciative of them not paying the way but also not letting me completely sink. I hope to do the same thing for my boys when the time comes.
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Old 11-17-2010, 01:36 PM
 
Location: maryland
3,966 posts, read 6,048,278 times
Reputation: 1726
Nope you helping her isn't going to teach her anything. Tell her she chose to be an adult and now has to live like one....waiting a year or 2 isn't going to kill her.
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Old 11-17-2010, 01:41 PM
 
1,302 posts, read 1,604,224 times
Reputation: 1926
The choices would have been very limited where she could go for $30,000 anyway, so her going away I don't think is a big deal.

She can always find a job (hopefully) full time and go to grad school at night or online if she wants.

I don't think you should judge her for taking trips, that is what being young is all about...having fun! She sounds pretty responsible, she should be able to let looose.

In the end, it is up to you. She knew how much money woud be available and what she would owe in the end. I would probably help out a bit, but I certainly wouldn't think bad of a parent who didn't.
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