21 year old wants to move to west coast

Drew64

Member
It has been a long time since I posted here. Came to get opinions and probably just to get my emotions out. My daughter is 21. Finished high school and enrolled her at a community college. She took classes in and off. Always needed prodding or reminding to get work done. She’s never had a real drive to do things. Other than her gaming and drawing. Her major is graphic arts. Or so she says that’s what she wants. Over this past summer with everything being remote she got more into gaming. Has a twitch channel and streams her games. Plays League of Legends. She wanted a gaming desktop and earned money playing to get one with some help from me. So she plays late at night. This semester she registered for 2 classes which we dropped today as she did none of the work and didn’t want to lose the money. Last week she texted me cause that’s how kids communicate that she wanted to move in with some of her online friends she made. She was tired of having us breathing down her neck. She knows them and they have lived on their own. So o ask where and she tells me Washington state they were looking at outside of Portland Oregon. One of the girls lives in area. Supposedly two of these girls make some money from their web page and want my daughter to work freelance for them and they will help with her rent part. I’m it fully aware of everything as we have not talked about it yet. I needed to absorb what she told me. Now in the text my daughter felt she was not loved even if we said it. That’s the furthest from the truth. She is loved very much. My wife started crying when I told her this. She has no life skills. She thinks this will make her independent yet I can only think about her safety. She couldn’t stay at sleep away camp for a week without us having to get her. She does take anxiety medications low dose. But doesent drive yet as is afraid too. Yet she wants to try moving out west to see if can become more independent. With people I hace not meant. She has no friends really in our area. In school only had a couple but they had their own issues and no longer talk. I get the feeling alone especially now that every thing is virtual. I can’t stop her from going there but I don’t see how she would even pull this off. Does not have finances. Has not worked a day in her life as felt school was mor important and she had enough trouble trying to get that work done. I could go on forever and it’s a long story that brought us to this point. Over the summer when I was not working we had a lot of fun going to different places in the area and trying new restaurants and stuff. She enjoyed it. On top of she has a cat we got her as a therapy pet. Now I’m attached to it and take care of her more than she does. To me this is a recipe for disaster. Any thoughts
 

Crayola13

Well-Known Member
Eventually, the people age calls friends will want to go their separate ways. You have to think ahead five years from now. That living situation can't last. I don't know if earning money from gaming is a real thing.
 

MissLulu

Well-Known Member
Drew, I have kids around the same age (25, 21 and 17). What you've described here seems within normal parameters for kids these days.
I completely understand your concerns about whether she will cope or not - as parents we all have these concerns, but your daughter is an adult and there is nothing you can do to stop her. In fact, I would suggest that the more you push back, the more likely you are to push her away.

It is quite common for kids to make friends online these days, and making money from gaming/websites online projects is also common, particularly amongst younger people, so I don't see an issue with that per se.

My approach would be to offer some help (not financial but other help). For instance, you could suggest going with her to help her move her stuff, or to check out the apartment beforehand. This way you would get to meet the others and make sure everything was above board. If you try to stop her or argue with her about this, you may push her into a situation where she doesn't feel like she can contact you if something goes wrong.

A small example from my own life - today my 17 year old son is travelling to our state capital (it's a public holiday here in Australia) to meet up with a bunch of people he met online. I'm a bit nervous about this because we live over 100km away from the city and he is still young. However there are other kids going from this area who I know. The reason I know them is because when he started spending time with these kids online, I encouraged him to invite the ones who lived locally to come for a pizza and movie night and to stay over. This meant that I got to see what these kids were like and whether they were safe for my son to spend time with. Because I was welcoming and have been accommodating of my son's choice in friends he is keeping me in the loop about his friends and their plans, which I think is a good thing. He knows that he can call me if anything goes awry today and I will help. Even though I am nervous, I feel this is a better outcome than me banning the trip and pushing him into a situation where he may lie and see these people behind my back.

Of course something could go wrong - just like it could for your daughter, but we have to allow our kids to develop independence.

Is your issue that she will be a long way from home, that you don't know the other young women or that she is moving out? Because by your daughter's age many kids have spent time away from home at college, with people their parents do not know, often a long way from home. This is how kids grow and learn to develop skills. If it is that you don't know the other young women, are there steps you can take to remedy this? Can you talk to her in a non confrontational way and say something like you are happy for her and support the idea in theory but for her safety and your peace of mind you'd love to meet the others/see where she is going to live?

You mention a camp she came home early from. Surely this was when she was a child or teen, so not recently? She is 21 now, an adult, and this is her choice. I think your wife is right. You need to give her a chance to prove herself. If it were me I would send her off with love and the knowledge she can come home if things go wrong.
 

Drew64

Member
Well she has not met these people other than online and I have never met them. They are all from different states. My concern is she is of small
Stature. Maybe weighs 95 pounds wet. Has no way to defend herself against people. Also just because you turn 18 or 21 does not in my mind make you and adult. I have no issues of her moving out it’s moving out without having any skills in life. Great she plays online games. Never going to make a living. She goes to college for art degree. Should finish that first then see if still wants to move.
 

BusynMember

Well-Known Member
I have learned that if our adult kids really want to do something, they will We can't stop them. If your daughter wants to go and can find a way she will go. But she may change her mind. Or be unable to get there.

At 21 you don't have to meet her friends for her to have them. And even small folks learn how to navigate the world. Trust me my kids have all done things that made me cringe and one has not stopped and she is in her 30s.

The best thing your daughter could do in my opinion is to get help. Same with mine. But we can't force it.

Your daughter is expressing the normal desire to be independent like her peers. All kids get to that point. Anxiety doesn't stop independence. Many with anxiety still are independent.

Somehow your daughter is telling you that she wants to move on. God knows if she actually will. Has she been diagnosed with anything more that anxiety?

I send my hugs and prayersand know how hard this is and also our desire to shield our kids. But in the end they have to leave....and some need professional help to learn how to be independent adults. Some who need that help refuse to get it. But all steps are up to them. Or lack of taking steps.

Good luck and hugs. Update us.
 
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Drew64

Member
She has ADHD as well but has not taken medications for that in a while due to wt concerns. Only small dose of anti anxiety medications. I’m not trying to keep her at home. I want her to be independent and move on with her life. I just feel she found some people who she has something in common with and thinks everything will be great. If she were thinking about moving closer to an east coast state maybe I’d be less stressed. I know my daughter. She text me for every little problem. I can’t fly out just to help her. She see a psychiatrist every few months for medications but feels her mom and I need all the help as we are to blame for everything.
 

ksm

Well-Known Member
Maybe just tell her something like, it sounds exciting, and ask how she thinks she will manage to get there, and take some of her belongings. Dont play devils advocate, but ask about plans. How will she pay for it? Let her try to figure out details. Maybe that would encourage her to get a job and save $. And get a license.

I would not drive her to the west coast... because then you would feel like you would have to rescue her when things go bad...and at this point, it will go bad because she is not prepared to move and luve on her own.

I've found that if I don't try to discourage my kids plan, but let them figure it out, they usually find something easier to do! I refuse to pay for their wild schemes... ksm
 

Copabanana

Well-Known Member
Dear Drew

When I was 21 I went to UC Berkeley. I had already been self-supporting for 4 years. Promptly within a few months after I arrived I ended up arrested twice. Then, needing to support myself I got a job as a waitress and ended up a barfly.

Fast forward many years, I am a doctor, I am a person of stability, self-respect and means.

Why am I telling you this? I agree with everything MissLulu writes. I believe these kids will do as they will do. It's not sensible. It's imprudent. It's unrealistic and potentially irresponsible. But they are legal adults. There is a saying in Spanish that roughly translates this way: as much as it's one way, it's the opposite.

It's a big mistake for your child to travel to a place she's never been, to depend on people she doesn't know, without a work history, anything to fall back upon, and vulnerabilities. It may be an accident waiting to happen.

But you can't hold her back. It would be to undermine her, to suggest she can't do it, that she is too fragile, not to be trusted and without capacity to grow and to change. That's what the saying means. As much as the situation is foolhardy, it would be worse to try to discourage or to restrain her--most of all, by telling her she is not ready or unable. That would be undermining her.

To me it's the right thing to have courage and to take a risk. We don't know that she won't fly, away from the nest. It could be a disaster, but as Ms. Lulu says, she can come home to you. Her biggest strength and resource right now is your love and support, and your belief in her.
 
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newstart

Well-Known Member
It has been a long time since I posted here. Came to get opinions and probably just to get my emotions out. My daughter is 21. Finished high school and enrolled her at a community college. She took classes in and off. Always needed prodding or reminding to get work done. She’s never had a real drive to do things. Other than her gaming and drawing. Her major is graphic arts. Or so she says that’s what she wants. Over this past summer with everything being remote she got more into gaming. Has a twitch channel and streams her games. Plays League of Legends. She wanted a gaming desktop and earned money playing to get one with some help from me. So she plays late at night. This semester she registered for 2 classes which we dropped today as she did none of the work and didn’t want to lose the money. Last week she texted me cause that’s how kids communicate that she wanted to move in with some of her online friends she made. She was tired of having us breathing down her neck. She knows them and they have lived on their own. So o ask where and she tells me Washington state they were looking at outside of Portland Oregon. One of the girls lives in area. Supposedly two of these girls make some money from their web page and want my daughter to work freelance for them and they will help with her rent part. I’m it fully aware of everything as we have not talked about it yet. I needed to absorb what she told me. Now in the text my daughter felt she was not loved even if we said it. That’s the furthest from the truth. She is loved very much. My wife started crying when I told her this. She has no life skills. She thinks this will make her independent yet I can only think about her safety. She couldn’t stay at sleep away camp for a week without us having to get her. She does take anxiety medications low dose. But doesent drive yet as is afraid too. Yet she wants to try moving out west to see if can become more independent. With people I hace not meant. She has no friends really in our area. In school only had a couple but they had their own issues and no longer talk. I get the feeling alone especially now that every thing is virtual. I can’t stop her from going there but I don’t see how she would even pull this off. Does not have finances. Has not worked a day in her life as felt school was mor important and she had enough trouble trying to get that work done. I could go on forever and it’s a long story that brought us to this point. Over the summer when I was not working we had a lot of fun going to different places in the area and trying new restaurants and stuff. She enjoyed it. On top of she has a cat we got her as a therapy pet. Now I’m attached to it and take care of her more than she does. To me this is a recipe for disaster. Any thoughts
Hi Drew64, I understand how you feel.
My daughter has bipolar, ADHD, anxiety, and other weird issues. We live in America and she wanted to go to college in Australia. It was concerning for me to let her go that far. I knew that no matter what I said or did she was going to go. At one point she said to me 'I want to get as far away from you as I can'. I wished her well and let her go, I had to depend completely on her guardian angels and God. When she got there she went to parties and did stupid things. After a while she started to call more often. First it was twice a week then everyday then twice a day. I had no idea why she would call someone twice a day long distance when she wanted to get away, far away from me. She called one day and told me she was ready to come home. I told her since she wanted to get so much distance between us I was hoping she would stay there and possibly go to grad school.
I did not realize that her living with me caused me so much grief that when she left, I had the best year that I had in many years. I actually looked like a different person, my job was going better than ever and my husband and I felt younger than we had for years.
I think with these mental disorders many times, some kids have ODD and if you fight them they will try to prove you wrong.
I hope you sit back relax and tell her 'I hope this next step will be good for you'.
 

BloodiedButUnbowed

Well-Known Member
I am sorry you are dealing with this. We have similar issues and concerns with our son. Other posters are absolutely right, there is nothing we can do to control, manage, or fix them. All we can do is set boundaries for ourselves and detach, with love, when needed.
 
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