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education.com asks:
Q:

When you are talking about an older teen (almost 19, for example), how can you get them to even GET a job?

"We are at our wits-end with the excuse, lethargy and disrespect regarding this issue."

Asked by Angela in commenting on the article, "Should My Teen Get A Job?": http://www.education.com/magazine/column/entry/...  
In Topics: Jobs/Careers, Parenting / Our Family, Teen issues
> 60 days ago

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Expert

Boys Town National Hotline
Sep 15, 2010
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What the Expert Says:

Hi Angela!

Is your son a high school graduate or does he have a GED? Having a high school diploma or a GED should be his first priority over getting a job. He will not be able to find a decent job or have a solid future without one or the other.

If your son is already in college, and is doing well, he may not be able to fit a job into his schedule or feel he can do his best and do both at the moment. In this case, focus on him working full time during the summer months.

If your son is not attending school and refuses to get a job and seems very unmotivated, he could have a mental health issue such as depression or anxiety. Consider taking him in for a check up with his pediatrician or family physician first, just to rule out any health problems. The doctor will talk in private with your son and may recommend a mental health evaluation or therapy.

Everyone should have at least one thing in their life they feel they are good at doing or something they want to learn more about. Your son needs to identify what are his interests and what gives him a sense of joy or sense of purpose. A therapist or counselor is an objective party and may be able to help him identify his interests and help him set goals for his life. By taking the pressure off of yourself, and allowing your son to find his own way, you will encourage him to be an adult and make decisions for himself.

Our counselors are here 24 hours, 7 days a week to help parents who are going through some of the same issues as yourself. Please call our toll-free hotline at: 1-800-448-3000, or e-mail us at: hotline@boystown.org You will also find very helpful information on our website: www.parenting.org

Take care and best to you and your son,

Cynthia, Crisis Counselor
Boys Town National Hotline
1-800-448-30000

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Additional Answers (2)

greenprof2
greenprof2 writes:
Hi -
it sounds like your main problem is not the job per se but your teen's attitude. He or she must feel entitled to being supported or may have issues with authority. Your teen must be a high school student in the final years or a recent grad. I'm wondering what history of contributing the family has been established already? Does this teen contribute labor such as doing dishes, making beds, doing laundry, mowing the lawn, etc? If such a history has been established, then it would be a natural segway to looking for external, paying work. Does this teen have any interests that could be job related?  Our 16 year-old son is working this summer in the Youth Conservation Corps. He likes the outdoors and nature and it was a natural for him. Consider paring your teen's interest with related job possibilities.

Many communities have agencies that might assist you - you might start by asking at your local library.  Good luck.  Michael Bentley, Expert Panel Member
> 60 days ago

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BigSis
BigSis writes:
My parents motivated me to get a job when I was 16 by telling me that all the money that I would be making would be my spending money. They stopped giving me an allowance which encouraged me to get a job so I could go shopping, go to the movies, etc. Being able to spend and save my hard earned money gave me a sense of independence.
> 60 days ago

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