21 year old and disrespect for parents


I am looking for advice on helping mend a family situation. My 21 year old neice and her mom (my sister) are constantly fighting. They argue over boyfriends, finances, college, etc. My neice talks back to her mother. She also lacks motivation to get a part-time job, finish college and be responsible for her finances. My neice currently has a boyfriend and my sister fears she will get distracted from her school work by spending all her time with him. How can I help? My sister is extremely stressed out by all this. She feels she needs to set an ultimatum that she will cut her daughter off financially if she does not improve her grades and does not start to show respect for her parents. My neice feels her mom is nagging her constantly and keeps saying “I can do it - I’m 21 now” Help me know what to suggest to my sister and what to say to my neice.


Our neighbor had similar problems with a 19 year old son.

Ultimately he got the heave-ho and is now out on his own. I wouldn’t say its an ideal situation or he’s all cleaned up; however he’s not being a financial drain on his family any more, hasn’t crashed any of their cars, hasn’t mouthed off to his mother, and mom & dad’s relationship is much better. And he does now have a job, because he likes to eat.

In that case dad was a doormat until his car got crashed. Doormats don’t get respect. Too bad he didn’t have more backbone when his son’s only problems were bad grades and mouthing off to mom.


Is she in college? If so, does she live at home year round or is she just there for the summer between semesters?

My mother and I didn’t get along in high school (for a variety of reasons). Once I went to college (and lived there) our relationship greatly improved. I came back after my first year of college to live with my parents in the summer, and things were even worse. The next two summers I lived in a different state with a friend, and again, our relationship improved. After I graduated from college, I ended up back at my parents for a short time while I was engaged, but I did my own laundry, shopping, cooking and I payed my parents rent ($200 a month). And the relationship was strained, but it remained intact. Now, after being married for 5 years, the relationship is pretty good, but I am quite sure that if I had to live with her again, it would get ugly. We just can’t live together. We each have our own issues and together they are not good. I think that is just how some people (family or not) are.

She is 21, that is certainly old enough to show respect to her mother, even if they don’t get along well. The way she talks about being able to do things herself - well, I think she needs to prove it. If she lives at home, charge her rent. And, she should only be able to live there under some conditions - she has to been in school (and getting good grades), be respectful to her family (not a doormat, but polite and have good manners, no talking back), help with chores around the house, and she has to have at least a part time job (full time one during the summer and a part time during the school year). If she fails to meet any of these agreements, then she has to find a place to live on her own.

Ideally parents shouldn’t have to get to this point, but sometimes our parenting methods are lacking and cause problems, or other circumstances beyond our control and contribute to our children having a disrespectful attitude to us. I think the only way to stop it once it gets to the point you have described with your niece is to show her that her mother is not a doormat and she can’t do everything that she pleases.

It has been my experience (with the people I have know that use to treat their parents similarly) it was because they were spoiled. Mom & dad brought their car, gave them gas money, paid their insurance, payed for college, brought them clothes (and whatever else they wanted), they never had chores, etc etc.

I didn’t have a great relationship with my mom, but I rarely talked back at her, always had chores (without an allowance), I paid for my own car, insurance, gas, and most of my college expenses, and even my wedding.

Right now, it sounds like the daughter is ruling the house, not the mom, and this needs to stop, or it will only hurt her in the long run.


Positively my view! I see it all the time where I live today where the kids get everything they want and regardless of how they treat other people around them - never get disciplined.

We have 14-16 year old children that live near us and already mouthing off to adult neighbors and doing petty vandalism to the people who live around them. Parents could care a less. Just keep taking them to their sport games, etc…

It’s amazing and sad to watch.

Sounds like this 21 year old continues to do this type of behavior because she’s getting something out of it. If she wasn’t, she’d stop.


Am too struggling to avoid arguing with my parents, i always wonder why my parent like to compare me with others. While i do understand i am pretty much a rebellious gal by nature, although my parents provided me with things that money can afford, but deep down inside me am dying to be love…Most often i always envy those who were brought up in a loving family and have encouraging parent…yet my parents will always think that i am too stupid and naive, rather then giving me encouragement, am always demean and hurt by them…i love my parents though, but it is a challenge for me to deal with them especially they at time think that i am stupid enough to help pple without thinking it is worth to help becoz some pple just wanna take advantages of me…blar…blar…if i start to share my stuff with others, my mom will always tell me off, why you wanna share , can’t they just use their own money to buy…etc…i don’t blame them since they are non believers, but i realize if i continue to live with my parent i just can’t get out of having a peaceful life…am they are so much of negative stuff coming out from their mouth…while am already cradle christian struggling with my faith…i wonder how can i overcome it:shrug:


Well, I would honestly set her out on her own. She is an adult and needs to learn to act as one. Some where along the way she has not learned to change from a child to an adult. It won’t help if your sister continues to let her walk all over her.


My generation needs to realize that they still have to be respectful to their parents and always take their advice into serious consideration, even if they are over 18 and living elsewhere. Acting on feelings and impulse is stupid.


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