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Am I an SS mom?

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AKA . . . I paid for your education so you owe me! :P

I'm 6 of one (very proud) 1/2 dozen of the other (somewhat irritated and probably more stubborn than I should be ::))

DD#2 graduated from beauty school with high honors, took the state-board test and is now a licensed beautician with a full time job at a prestigious salon. Yea! ;D

When she first started school she would practice on me with mani/pedi's and hair cuts (very simple bangs and trim.) She also practiced on her friends with hair color/highlights and styling.

I always paid her the school rate for whatever treatments she gave me saying that I'd rather give you all the money instead of paying the school. Friends paid only for product, not service.

Towards the end of her schooling I started going into the school salon because she needed to have a certain number of customers in order to be checked-off on certain things. Fine. No biggy. The school was 1/2 hour drive, but I did it a few times for her.

So now I am in need of a cut/trim. I asked DD#2 if she would do it for me.

DD#2: Would you please make an appointment at the salon?

Me: Why can't you just do it here?

DD#2: Because I'm new there. The more customers I bring in the better I look to my boss.

Me: But it will only take you like 15 minutes for the trim. How much would it cost at the salon?

DD#2: $XX

Me: And how much of that $XX do you actually receive? (nothing. she works minimum wage or commission whichever is higher +tips.)

DD#2: You know what I get paid. I'm just starting there. I want to make a good impression and bring in as many customers that I can. The salon cut includes the wash (get your head massaged! You know how much you like that!) and blow dry.

Me: Yeah, okay. But that's still an hour driving time (there and back) plus waiting until you're ready to receive me, plus a tip for the wash-person, a tip for you (ha! ;)) and the salon still makes more money off of me than you do!

DD#2: That makes sense. How about Monday when you get off of work? I still wish you would come into the salon.

What would you do? Am I an SS mom asking for in-home treatments rather than going to the salon?

Kind of, but not entirely.  If I were your daughter, I would have just cut it for you at home, because you are my family and I would have done it whether you had helped pay for school or not.  That's why I'm saying not entirely.  However, as a matter of course, I don't think it is fair to expect her to do it for free at home.  This is her job and having a client come in does help her with her employer.  You are asking her to give up that benefit in order to get a haircut for free for yourself.  Not entirely fair IMO.  You didn't set any conditions upon her when you paid for her education in terms of repayment, so to use that as a reason why she should give you free cuts is not right.

Does your DD live at home?

I would say that if she lives at home, it's reasonable for her to cut your hair at home and for you to pay her a reasonable rate.

If she lives elsewhere and you're asking her to drive to your house, I think that's not as reasonable.

I can see both your viewpoints and I don't fault either one. Maybe you could alternate? Go to her salon for one cut, ask her to cut your hair at home next time.

I think your DD is being very business-savvy.  She knows that at this particular point in her career, having bodies in the seat at the salon will help her more than the pay for one haircut.  You just need to get clear, is this haircut about you helping her, or about her helping you?  Because you presented it as you doing her a favor.  She has told you, that is not the favor she really needs right now.

If you want her to do YOU a favor by cutting it for you at home, that is a reasonable request, and it sounds like she is willing to do it at a time that is good for her.

Both requests are reasonable, and it sounds like you have raised a smart cookie!

You want a favor; she wants a favor.  You paid for her education, so your favor wins.

It might be a nice compromise if you took turns:  home, salon, home, salon, etc. 


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