I've gotta say, this is a great thread!
When I was a freshman in college, I got a super-exciting letter from Discover. They wanted to give me a credit card! My parents, who are probably the best money managers I know, strongly warned against it. I had a card of theirs for emergencies so my own card was not necessary (plus, they knew I was an avid spender). But they were obviously too dumb to know what they were talking about, and I took the $1,000 credit card gladly. I remember thinking at the time that they were trying to prevent me from having the means to go out of town with my then-boyfriend, who they really disliked. I'd show them!
Yeah, maxed that thing out in no time and had nothing to show for it. When they started calling my dorm room looking for payment and I realized my job at the student rec wasn't going to make much of a dent, I was pretty freaked out. My mom was nice enough to help me re-work my budget so I could make a few months of pathetically small payments before strongly suggesting that I work my rear off over the summer and pay it off. I listened that time around!
A friend of mine from HS inherited $500,000 when his grandmother died (this was my sophomore year of college). I don't know many 19-year-olds that have any business with $500k, and anyway, he wasn't supposed to get the entire sum right away - but his mom gave it all to him anyway. He bought a house which he proceeded to trash by renting rooms to his friends for next to nothing and throwing huge parties (admittedly, they were some great parties). He bought enough clothes for the entire campus. He bought stacks of CDs. He bought a car which he also trashed. By the time he graduated, all he had left was the house, which he sold for substantially less than he paid for it. Very sad.