Stick a Fork in Us, We’re Done!

Our youngest, The Boy, graduated from college on Saturday. He’s somehow managed to graduate with honors, all while holding down two jobs. We can’t imagine having that much energy. As parents, we couldn’t be prouder.

In addition to the pride we feel for our son’s accomplishments, we have found other reasons to celebrate. This is the last year we’ll ever make a tuition payment, have an offspring on our medical insurance, or… CONTINUE READING >>

The Boy's Graduation

Our youngest, The Boy, graduated from college on Saturday. He’s somehow managed to graduate with honors, all while holding down two jobs. We can’t imagine having that much energy. As parents, we couldn’t be prouder.

In addition to the pride we feel for our son’s accomplishments, we have found other reasons to celebrate. This is the last year we’ll ever make a tuition payment, have an offspring on our medical insurance, or get to claim a dependent on our taxes.

Stick a fork in us, we’re done.

This doesn’t mean we’re finished being parents, not by any means. But it’s different now, we are the parents of three adults. We will no longer have day-to-day responsibility in their lives. We haven’t with our two oldest, The Piglet and Decibel, for years, they are adults, and as such are responsible for themselves. With the exception of a few heavy learning experiences along the way, our girls are doing well in the big, bad world.

Now it’s time for The Boy to take flight and follow his sisters’ path. Hopefully we have provided the tools to make that possible, but only he can make it happen for himself.

We helped our kids make college affordable, but all of our kids had to have jobs while in college to pay for their books, bills and living expenses. In high school, if they wanted spending cash they had to find a way to earn it themselves.

All three worked in restaurants during college, and the girls worked at eateries as second jobs while slaving at entry level wages in their chosen fields. Restaurant work is hard, but they quickly learned people skills, something that will benefit them greatly in any workplace. Nothing is harder to deal with than hungry people before they get their food.

We feel strongly that having a strong work ethic has greatly benefited each of them in this tough economy. Recent studies show that about half of this year’s graduates are unemployed or “under-employed, a daunting statisic for our young adults.

So far our offspring’s solution to the toxic job market has been to find any work they can get. If it sucks, all the more motivation to look harder for a job they like.

Is there really any question as to which job applicant has the better chance scoring one of the rare available positions if an employer is choosing between one who is currently employed, even if it is “under-employed,” or one that is unemployed back at home in his old bedroom with the luxury to whine about the economy?

That’s why we’re not worried about our college educated, certified commercial pilot son who went back to his job at the pizza place the day after he graduated.

He won’t be there long.

David & Veronica, GypsyNester.com

Update: I now have something new to worry about. Look what The Boy is up to now. UGH.

YOUR TURN: You’ve heard our opinion, what’s yours? Do you have any tips for The Boy as he heads out into the rough job market?

23 thoughts on “Stick a Fork in Us, We’re Done!”

  1. Congrats! You have raised responsible adults who will contribute to the world in their chosen field. My kids had to work from the age of 15, just like me. Unlike me though, they didn’t want to. I wanted my own money. I didn’t want to ask my working class parents. I knew how difficult it was for them. My son has finally procured a summer internship in his major – electrical engineering. I know it will serve him well in finding a real job when he graduates next December. While studying an intensely difficult major, he works at the university’s career center, helping fellow students with their resumes. I’m a proud mom. My other son works and is finishing up his degree, maybe slower, but still prodding along in another great field, 3D modeling and CAD. Hopefully the 3D printer boom will be a boon for him as well. When they’re no longer our responsibilities, we will have fulfilled our greatest job. We gave them wings to fly.

  2. Looks like you are hearing from a lot of us who had our kids work. Mine washed dishes and then was lucky enough the next summer to be promoted to cash register. Now working on an engineering summer internship. Congrats to your son and to you!

  3. You have every reason to be so proud of your son (and daughters!) That he is so motivated is to his and your credit. From my research into the subject, the greatest de-motivator for adult children of the affluent is large gifts of money. We did it like you two, expecting them to work and contribute. Thus, they never developed an entitlement mindset and are just great guys!
    Congratulations!

  4. Wow, guys! Imagine our amazement and delight when we opened our email from Road Scholar (We’re about to head off to “Quintessential Britain” with RS) and saw your smiling faces! I passed the sign for “Tech Monkey Cage” on Thor’s room as I finished tutoring the other day, and thought of you both…

    We’ll be looking for your further blogs as you Gypsynest in South America…and congratulations on David’s graduation, a big milestone in the Gypsynest adventure.

    Our best to you from the St. Croix crew.

    1. Great to hear from you! Have a ball on your trip. We miss everyone down there… but probably not so much for the next couple weeks. 😉
      Best to all there too.

  5. Congratulations!! We’re just starting that journey with the older of two headed off for her first year in college. Thanks for sharing these excellent stories!

  6. Congratulations! Our youngest is 20 – so we’re not certifiably done yet — medium well I’d say 🙂 My eldest son is 25 and bartending in LA while working in a play in the evenings. He graduated from school in NYC and like your kids, mine aren’t afraid of work (they grew up on a farm in the midwest). The eldest is in SF and is a web designer. She has now started her own company and has more work than she knows what to do with, which is awesome in this job market. Like you, I’m a proud parent. You’ve done well!

  7. So wonderful and congratulations to your son. We are currently underway to finding our TT and hitting the road. You have just helped us make our decision a little sooner.

  8. CONGRATULATIONS! We are 3 years behind you, but we can see the light. Thank you for sharing! (It’s funny; we have 3 girls and a boy, who is the youngest and we call him “The Boy”.)

    -Jackie

  9. Congratulations! You have every right to be proud! Sounds like we raised our 3 with the same philosophies … we helped, but they also had to work. And all three are competent, independent adults today (our Baby Girl graduatetd last year).

    Your last nester has flown the coop – well done Mom & Dad!

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