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Lack of maturity?

22tigermom22tigermom 15 replies2 threads Junior Member
So frustrated with college sophomore son. He just doesn't seem to be able to fire on all cylinders. He is pretty good about going to class and doing his work. Grades are ok - he isn't typically a straight A student but mostly B with a few A's and C's - which equates to a GPA of 3.2 at the moment.

My biggest concern is his lack of maturity. He does have mild ADHD, and diagnosed executive functioning issues - but my gosh I think many kids do and I am not going to use that as an excuse!

His classes are all later in the day - noon on - as he can not get up in the morning - and some days barely gets up for 12! So he is up half the night and sleeps half the day. He is not in any kind of routine other than class attendance - doesn't put things on his calendar - ie, extra study sessions, SI classes, etc. Never works ahead even when he definitely can, and in many cases could have extra points for turning in early. Read email? forget it - why would he want to do that? Messy. Lives with a couple other guys but he is the messy one, and they are starting to complain. It seems life's focus is where and when are they going out and who will be there. I am all for fun - but I also feel like there are some basics that should be in order before you do?? I offer suggestions to no avail.

How do you light a fire under a kid to get his act together before he is sorry?? Or do you just watch it and keep your mouth shut? He is quite capable, and mature in other areas - ie world travel on his own, etc - but this day to day lack of focus is driving his type A mama NUTS!
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Replies to: Lack of maturity?

  • NJWrestlingmomNJWrestlingmom 1463 replies2 threads Senior Member
    Honestly, it sounds a bit like my S17. With a 3.2, I wouldn't worry too much. I think the late nights/sleeping in is pretty common. Does your son have a job in summer? Mine does; he's up at 7am for that mid-May - August, so I don't get too upset about it.

    The messy drives me bonkers too - his room at home is a disaster area! Until the girlfriend came; then everything was tidy. But I must say - an unplanned drop in visit at his off campus apartment revealed a surprisingly neat apartment.

    I do think a lot of this is common, especially among boys at this age. If he goes to class and keeps his grades, I wouldn't stress over it too much.
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  • 22tigermom22tigermom 15 replies2 threads Junior Member
    Hi and thanks! Yes I guess it is not totally unheard for boy at that age - I just feel like he needs a kick in the pants - though it may not help! I hate to think he is alienating others by his behavior, though I guess that could be a wake up call when they don't want to live with him next year, or they stop including him. I guess I am super irritated that these are common sense things and he should really not have to be told and should just be doing it. And I know best way to learn is to drop the ball a couple of times. If he put in a small amount of effort, the return could be so big - ie, turning in work for extra - he maybe would have an A? - the lazy, who cares, good enough attitude is just the worst!
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  • thumper1thumper1 76554 replies3387 threads Senior Member
    edited January 24
    He has a 3.2 gpa. That is not even close to academic probation or dismissal.

    We’re you expecting a 4.0 gpa in college?

    It sounds like he is doing well, especially with the issues you put in your OP.

    What exactly is your concern?
    edited January 24
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  • mom2andmom2and 3010 replies20 threads Senior Member
    It is incredibly frustrating, but honestly not much you can do if he is unwilling to accept help. Sounds very much like a very smart kid with ADD likely the inattentive type which is harder to treat. He can compensate for his ADD by learning material quickly and doing well enough on tests to get Bs, but is unwilling/unable to get himself to do the extra needed for an A.

    You can offer to pay for a counselor, tutor or coach that may help keep him on track, but the reality is, he is an adult and you can't make him someone he is not. A kid that is satisfied with Bs is not going to be come an A student because you want him to be. It is important to try not to make every conversation about his issues. It took me a while and lots of deep breathing and reflection to recognize that this was my son's issue and not mine.
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  • toomanyteenstoomanyteens 1070 replies66 threads Senior Member
    My 25 year old daughter is like this -- has an executive function LD and is smart but cannot pull it together. I finally realized she really cannot do it and she does because of the LD lack the same maturity as for example her younger sisters at the same age.
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  • coolguy40coolguy40 2646 replies6 threads Senior Member
    Sounds like he's doing well. People with ADD are just people with different faults. He might struggle with being messy or struggle to get As, but will probably excel in practical hands-on work. In-fact people with ADD tend to make excellent programmers. Why? Because they make mistakes! The more mistakes you catch, the better your code is.
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  • cinnamon1212cinnamon1212 775 replies8 threads Member
    Agree with what the others have written. My ADHD son is similar. But a lot is actually the ADHD (I know you said you didn't want to use it as an excuse) and is very very difficult for my son. I'm with you, I'm wanting him to get on finding a summer job/internship and he's procrastinating, so I feel your pain.

    But my son (and yours) has to learn to navigate the world on their own, so let them face the natural consequences of their actions. Mad roommates, or a summer living at home again doing a manual labor job.

    That said, has your son ever been given the tools to cope with his ADHD? Like executive function tutoring, medication?

    ADHD has many strengths, too. Many entrepreneurs have it, because people with ADHD are sometimes more creative, and see the world in a slightly different way.
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  • TS0104TS0104 1127 replies29 threads Senior Member
    You say that shouldn't the basics be covered before fun, but it sounds like they are: He goes to class, he's getting a 3.2. He's covering the basics. Many other college kids' only routine is also going to class. I know how it can be being a super organized/planner type A! But please realize that he is covering the basics, he may not be a type A, and he's age 20 or so.

    As for the roommates and mess, yes just let it go. Don't ask. Kind of the equivalent of shutting their door at home if you don't want to see the mess. He truly may not be thinking of the consequence of not being invited to room with them again, so maybe one reminder of that nature is in order. After that, let it be...he'll deal with the consequences and it sounds like he would handle them OK.
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  • ucbalumnusucbalumnus 80204 replies720 threads Senior Member
    3.2 is nowhere near the danger point of being put on academic probation or dismissal. It is also higher than the 3.0 that most employers that screen by GPA use.

    It may only be a concern if a higher GPA is needed to renew a scholarship or enter the desired major, or if there are dreams of medicine or law.
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  • 22tigermom22tigermom 15 replies2 threads Junior Member
    Thanks so much for all the replies. I don't think anyone is saying anything I hadn't already been thinking - but sometimes it helps to hear it from others!

    I am not worried about probation - though he has to have above 3.0 for his program.
    I agree not knowing any of his details would probably help me! - and maybe him? I am trying to ask less, not reach out to him - let him do the reaching and choose the topics etc.

    He doesn't have a job at the moment - just transferred schools - he will, but I wanted to give him a couple of months to get all things settled if possible. He did have one last semester and I agree it helps him. He has quite a few hours this time, 17.5 so also being aware of that.

    He did have an EF tutor for a bit in high school - "dumb"? He will go to academic tutoring when he feels necessary though he isn't too proactive about it. He has had medication before- and takes it on longer days, finals, etc. He has never taken daily, as he really loses too much weight - we experienced this in HS, and had to reduce to as needed. I also found out that he and friends will share or sell their ADD meds - ie, he didnt have any at school out of state - I only sent 10 or so with him for the semester - oh no worry I'll get one from so and so - it's the same pill and dose mom! - I can give him one back when I get mine or pay $10. Seriously? this is what I have raised? who thinks like this? anyway, I digress.

    He did a summer abroad last year and did fine, he is quite capable of rising to the occasion when he needs to, or wants to - we just may not agree when are the right occasions!

    Just frustrating when it seems the waste so many opportunities....sleeping, going out and playing xbox!?!?!?
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  • cinnamon1212cinnamon1212 775 replies8 threads Member
    Hey, hey, don't be too tough on the OP! I get it, my son isn't living up to his potential although from the outside he's doing fine, and that's frustrating.

    But -- so far! -- things work out for my son, so I have to let him follow his path.
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  • skoakesskoakes 1 replies0 threads New Member
    Kids with ADHD are immature. They lag behind their peers in maturity by several years. Our older daughter will be attending CC for the first 2 years for just this reason. We want her to have time to mature before going away.
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  • compmomcompmom 11140 replies78 threads Senior Member
    For a kid with ADHD and executive function issues, he sounds like he is doing really well. The sleep schedule you describe is pretty normal for college kids. Is he your first?

    You might want to read "The Myth of Laziness." Our kids deal with real brain challenges.

    People with ADHD often do things at the last minute before a deadline because the time pressure helps them. Over time they may learn to change and certainly a coach can help, but it sounds like your son is doing pretty well academically.

    People skills are important too, for the future :) So is an ability to have fun!
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  • taverngirltaverngirl 1351 replies38 threads Senior Member
    I have a son like this, and it does scare me when I think about him in college next year. However, his teachers love him (wrote great reccs), he's pretty charming, scored high on his standardized tests, and always seems to end up with "decent" grades. I'm just going to have to trust him and let go a bit.
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