Home > Teens > Teen Values and Responsibilities > Jobs and Chores > Finding Your Teen a Summer Job
|

Expert Iconexpert advice MORE

Finding Your Teen a Summer Job

Toddler and Teenager Expert Advice from Carleton Kendrick, Ed.M., LCSW

Q: My 15-year-old daughter thinks she can do whatever she wants. She says that because her older brother doesn't have to tell us where he is, she doesn't either. She doesn't understand that he's 18, has his own car, goes to school, and has a job. She spends a lot of her time at home in her room on the phone.

I found my daughter a summer job and this made her very angry. Then I told her she'd be making almost $3000 this summer and she seemed interested. I then told her she would have to buy her own school clothes and supplies because I think she needs to take on some responsibility. The approach worked for my oldest son and for me. What do you think?

A: Don't insist that what worked for you when you were a teen will work for your 15-year-old daughter. Her secrecy in her room and her frequent phone conversations are normal for her age. She is attempting to establish some independence and separate from you. Contesting some of your rules is to be expected. Not telling you her whereabouts is unacceptable, however, but I do agree with her that your son should also tell you where he's going. His age doesn't excuse him from keeping you posted as to where he plans to be in the course of an evening. This information is something that all family members need to give one another, parents included.

I wish that you had not gotten your daughter a job without first asking her. In my opinion, however well-intentioned your efforts were, doing that without first discussing it with her showed her disrespect. Making $3000 in a summer for a 15-year-old is a lot of money. I disagree with your demand that she use some of this money to pay for her own school clothes and school supplies. Unless you are so financially strapped that you cannot afford to buy her these essentials, I think those purchases are a parent's responsibility. If she wants to help out the family in any regard with the money that she makes, let her be forthcoming about doing so.

I would strongly recommend that you change the focus from trying to control your daughter to trying to develop a relationship with her. Reading Parent/Teen Breakthrough: The Relationship Approach, by Kirshenbaum and Foster, will help you do that.

More on: Expert Advice

Carleton Kendrick has been in private practice as a family therapist and has worked as a consultant for more than 20 years. He has conducted parenting seminars on topics ranging from how to discipline toddlers to how to stay connected with teenagers. Kendrick has appeared as an expert on national broadcast media such as CBS, Fox Television Network, Cable News Network, CNBC, PBS, and National Public Radio. In addition, he's been quoted in the New York Times, Washington Post, Chicago Tribune, Boston Globe, USA Today, Reader's Digest, BusinessWeek, Good Housekeeping, Woman's Day, and many other publications.


Please note: This "Expert Advice" area of FamilyEducation.com should be used for general information purposes only. Advice given here is not intended to provide a basis for action in particular circumstances without consideration by a competent professional. Before using this Expert Advice area, please review our General and Medical Disclaimers.

highlights

Vote Now for the Children's & Teen Choice Book Awards
Voting is open now through May 3 for the Children's and Teen Choice Book Awards — the only national book awards program where the winning author, illustrator, and books of the year are selected by young readers. Encourage your child to vote for his favorites today!

Find Today's Newest & Best Children's Books!
Looking for newly released books for your child? Try our new Book Finder tool to search for new books by age, type, and theme, and create reading lists for kids!

10 Best E-Reading Apps for Kids
Whether your child likes reading fiction, non-fiction, magazines, or storybooks, these top-rated e-reading apps will help build her own personal library and encourage her love of reading.

Registered for Kindergarten — Now What?
Wondering what to do now that you've signed your child up for kindergarten? Try our award-winning Kindergarten Readiness app! This easy-to-use checklist comes with games and activities to help your child build essential skills for kindergarten. Download the Kindergarten Readiness app today!

stay connected

Sign up for our free email newsletters and receive the latest advice and information on all things parenting.

Enter your email address to sign up or manage your account.

Facebook icon Facebook icon Follow Us on Pinterest

editor’s picks