Author Topic: How to handle mother? Solution #49  (Read 9973 times)

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Isilleke

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How to handle mother? Solution #49
« on: October 01, 2013, 02:30:20 PM »
I recently dropped out of school and am hoping I get into the Military next year (the training here starts in October and you have to take a lot of tests to qualify beforehand).

In the meantime I'm looking for a job since I don't want to sit around for a year, but mostly from home and on line. To up my changes I'm also doing an on line course. Since I'm spending so much time at home now, my mother has decided that I have to do a lot more at home.

This has 2 effects.
On one hand she's getting mad because she thinks I'm not putting in enough effort to find a job, since all I'm doing is sitting behind my computer all day.
On the other hand all the jobs she has me do are taking me quite literally all day. Today I was doing her stuff from 10AM until 5PM. Which means that I haven't been able to look for a job today. I was just starting my on line course when she came home and I think because she saw me behind my computer doing "nothing" she decided that starting next week I have to cook as well. I HATE cooking with a passion. Can't do it, won't do it, will rather eat nothing at all.

How do I deal with this in a way that makes it livable? I can't tell her off, because when one of her children disagrees with her, she will just ignore them until she feels it's over and refuse to talk about it.
It's also not really that I'm not willing to do the extra work, just that it's so much that I don't even have a chance to do something about my unemployment.

Off topic, but not completely is that she's demanding to know what I do on the computer all day and wants to see it. For me, my computer is very personal and even though I'm not doing anything wrong, I don't like other people watching or even asking me about it. It feels like someone asking me to read my diary for example. Or when you're reading a good book and they keep interrupting you.

I'm not willing to tell her everytime I'm using the computer, what I'm doing, so I would like a nice stockphrase to block her off when she's asking me.

EDIT: I'm not paying rent as long as I don't have a job. My father however has proposed to send the alimony directly into my account so I could pay rent so to speak, but I'm afraid that if I would allow him to do that, my mother would go ballistic. It's a very sensitive topic.
« Last Edit: October 03, 2013, 07:30:47 AM by Isilleke »

SlitherHiss

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Re: How to handle mother?
« Reply #1 on: October 01, 2013, 02:36:10 PM »
Are you paying rent? I think that might better inform our answers and determine how much interference on her part is reasonable.

I do think you can tell her "My job right now is looking for a job. I'll be submitting resumes and doing research from 8am to 2pm. Please let me know if there's anything else I need to help with after that.", but it also might be helpful to tell her "I applied to x places today" or something to that effect.

SPuck

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Re: How to handle mother?
« Reply #2 on: October 01, 2013, 02:40:49 PM »
I highly suggest also going to the library whenever possible. Out of sight out of mind. It may help relieve the pressures.

On the other hand if you are dealing with someone who doesn't understand how job searching works in the modern day, and won't learn, your probably going to be dealing with a lot of future fights. :/

wolfie

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Re: How to handle mother?
« Reply #3 on: October 01, 2013, 02:43:14 PM »
How old are you? I don't blame your mom for adding chores to you since you are no longer in school and aren't working. But applying for jobs online isn't a 9 - 5 thing - there is no reason you can't do it in the evenings.

GreenBird

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Re: How to handle mother?
« Reply #4 on: October 01, 2013, 02:44:16 PM »
Can you give her a concentrated tour of how you're job-searching on the computer and what your online course is?  Sit her down with you for an hour and let her look over your shoulder and show her the websites where you're searching and networking, how the online course works, etc.  My guess is that she can't picture the computer being used for anything other than games, so if you can spend some time educating her on what you're doing, she might not feel so much like you're 'wasting time'.   

And you're also going to need to tell her that you need x amount of time per day for the online course and y amount of time for explicit job hunting, so while you're happy to work on things around the house, you are not available 24/7.  Schedule your job hunting and coursework, and then you can schedule the household stuff around it. 

Lynn2000

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Re: How to handle mother?
« Reply #5 on: October 01, 2013, 03:05:22 PM »
If she perceives you as just "sitting around all day at the computer doing nothing," it might help to make, and keep to, a strict schedule, which you mention to her and perhaps even keep posted where she can see it. I mean, if you were going off to campus for a class you would probably have told her about that and even given her a class schedule, right? Same if you were working, say, a part-time job. So think of your online class and your job-hunting like that. And then let her know when you're available to do chores.

"Mom, from 9am to 11am M thru F I will be working on my class, which is online. From 11am until 2pm, excluding lunch, I will be researching and applying for jobs online. After 2pm every day, and all day on the weekends, I'll be available to do chores."

Then you can say, "Mom, I told you, I'm working on my class right now" or "Mom, I told you, I'm applying for jobs right now." Treat the times you gave her like a work or class schedule that really can't be interrupted or postponed. And then when it's time to do chores, get up and do those promptly, so you're not the kid who has to be nagged into working. ;)

Maybe ask her for a list of things she wants done regularly in advance, so you don't have to check with her all the time and you can plan them. I think if you're living at home rent-free, doing chores is perfectly reasonable, but there should be room for negotiation in the actual chores, when they're done, and how many you do. Maybe if you have a set schedule and a set list of chores, both of you will feel like you're able to make more progress, rather than just doing whatever she wants whenever she thinks of it.

I understand that your computer work is personal to you, but if it would help her to see the website for your class, you might try that. Or perhaps challenge her to sit down at a company's website and figure out how to find and apply for a job with them! I myself had no idea how complicated and extensive the process could be until a colleague was job-hunting and telling me about it.
~Lynn2000

LeveeWoman

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Re: How to handle mother?
« Reply #6 on: October 01, 2013, 03:10:04 PM »
If she perceives you as just "sitting around all day at the computer doing nothing," it might help to make, and keep to, a strict schedule, which you mention to her and perhaps even keep posted where she can see it. I mean, if you were going off to campus for a class you would probably have told her about that and even given her a class schedule, right? Same if you were working, say, a part-time job. So think of your online class and your job-hunting like that. And then let her know when you're available to do chores.

"Mom, from 9am to 11am M thru F I will be working on my class, which is online. From 11am until 2pm, excluding lunch, I will be researching and applying for jobs online. After 2pm every day, and all day on the weekends, I'll be available to do chores."

Then you can say, "Mom, I told you, I'm working on my class right now" or "Mom, I told you, I'm applying for jobs right now." Treat the times you gave her like a work or class schedule that really can't be interrupted or postponed. And then when it's time to do chores, get up and do those promptly, so you're not the kid who has to be nagged into working. ;)

Maybe ask her for a list of things she wants done regularly in advance, so you don't have to check with her all the time and you can plan them. I think if you're living at home rent-free, doing chores is perfectly reasonable, but there should be room for negotiation in the actual chores, when they're done, and how many you do. Maybe if you have a set schedule and a set list of chores, both of you will feel like you're able to make more progress, rather than just doing whatever she wants whenever she thinks of it.

I understand that your computer work is personal to you, but if it would help her to see the website for your class, you might try that. Or perhaps challenge her to sit down at a company's website and figure out how to find and apply for a job with them! I myself had no idea how complicated and extensive the process could be until a colleague was job-hunting and telling me about it.

I like Lynn's suggestions a lot.

WillyNilly

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Re: How to handle mother?
« Reply #7 on: October 01, 2013, 03:16:02 PM »
If you are an adult (old enough for college and military), its perfectly reasonable for you to be expected to either be in school, or working, and paying rent. You aren't in school and you don't have a job outside the home, so putting you to work inside the home is reasonable. And its reasonable for your mom to expect you put in full time hours at it and/or enough hours to justify living and eating and using any amenities rent free (in other words your housework is your rent).

If you have specific schedule your online course requires, you should communicate that to your mother - you should not be expected to be pulled away from the course. But other then that, I think you should either find another place to live or pay the "rent" (the assignments your mother give you) at the place you are now. Job searching is a personal endeavor that shoudl be handled on personal time, and online job searching can be done at any hour.

gramma dishes

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Re: How to handle mother?
« Reply #8 on: October 01, 2013, 03:16:29 PM »
I recently dropped out of school and am hoping I get into the Military next year ...


...    My father however has proposed to send the alimony directly into my account so I could pay rent so to speak, but I'm afraid that if I would allow him to do that, my mother would go ballistic. It's a very sensitive topic.

Two questions.  You sound young.  What school have you recently dropped out of?  High School or College?  If you've dropped out of High School, will you be accepted into the military? 

I don't know what state (or even country) you live in, and I'm sure there are variations.  If you father is paying true alimony, he cannot divert that to you.  But if he's paying child support for you, he might be able to move that into your own account.

It sounds like you need to say calmly to your Mom, "Look, Mom.  I'm NOT using the computer to play games or get dates. I'm using the computer to do two things.  One:  I'm taking an online class which I hope will improve my job opportunities, and Two:  I'm searching for a job.  That's how it's done now, you apply on line.  I'm using it for serious things that will have an impact on my future. 

I'm happy to help you with household chores as much as I can, but I really have to have some time to get things done for myself.   Can we sit down and make a list of the things you'd like me to do for you?  We can talk about how much time each of those things take and figure out a flexible schedule, but right now I simply can't do everything you expect me to.  Let's figure out something that works and is fair for both of us."

z_squared82

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Re: How to handle mother?
« Reply #9 on: October 01, 2013, 03:22:09 PM »

Off topic, but not completely is that she's demanding to know what I do on the computer all day and wants to see it. For me, my computer is very personal and even though I'm not doing anything wrong, I don't like other people watching or even asking me about it. It feels like someone asking me to read my diary for example. Or when you're reading a good book and they keep interrupting you.

I'm not willing to tell her everytime I'm using the computer, what I'm doing, so I would like a nice stockphrase to block her off when she's asking me.


A potential response to this, when I was unemployed, the state gave me a notebook in which to keep track of all the jobs I applied for in case I was audited. You might also keep a hard copy record of where you applied (the company and job title), when, how (mail? Email? Online application?),  the contact person if applicable. And in the front, keep a list of the websites that list jobs (and log ins/passwords if you trust putting that in there). That way you can easily show your mom what you’ve done online without actually showing her the computer.

SlitherHiss

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Re: How to handle mother?
« Reply #10 on: October 01, 2013, 03:47:47 PM »
*snip*
EDIT: I'm not paying rent as long as I don't have a job. My father however has proposed to send the alimony directly into my account so I could pay rent so to speak, but I'm afraid that if I would allow him to do that, my mother would go ballistic. It's a very sensitive topic.

Re: your edit, this confuses me. Doesn't alimony usually go to the former spouse? You'd be paying her with her own money...

If you're not paying rent, it is reasonable that she should ask you to do chores or run errands in exchange for room and board. I think establishing "working hours" during which you job search is your best bet.

wolfie

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Re: How to handle mother?
« Reply #11 on: October 01, 2013, 03:51:29 PM »

EDIT: I'm not paying rent as long as I don't have a job. My father however has proposed to send the alimony directly into my account so I could pay rent so to speak, but I'm afraid that if I would allow him to do that, my mother would go ballistic. It's a very sensitive topic.

That is a legal issue and I would drop that immediately. You can't just change court orders on a whim.

TootsNYC

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Re: How to handle mother?
« Reply #12 on: October 01, 2013, 03:59:08 PM »


This has 2 effects.
On one hand she's getting mad because she thinks I'm not putting in enough effort to find a job, since all I'm doing is sitting behind my computer all day.
On the other hand all the jobs she has me do are taking me quite literally all day. Today I was doing her stuff from 10AM until 5PM. Which means that I haven't been able to look for a job today. I was just starting my on line course when she came home and I think because she saw me behind my computer doing "nothing" she decided that starting next week I have to cook as well. I HATE cooking with a passion. Can't do it, won't do it, will rather eat nothing at all.


I can't tell you how many times I hear from an older generation that they think people should look for work in some way OTHER than being on the computer.

So think of this as an education process.

Talk about all the stuff you've done online in a job-hunt session. Say things like, "Well, I spent 20 minutes looking through the listings from the newspaper's website. I saw lots of jobs like XYZ, but the skills they want are LMNO, which I don't have, so that's disappointing. Interesting to see, though. And there was only one place. I had to fill in the online form--those take about 30 minutes, especially since you don't DARE have the tiniest typo."

And block out your days in the morning, and share THAT with her:
"I'm going to spend from 1pm to 3pm looking for work on the computer. Some of those sites load slowly, so it'll be that long. Please don't interrupt me."
    "From 2 to 6, I need uninterrupted time on the computer to do my online course."


Isilleke

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Re: How to handle mother? #13
« Reply #13 on: October 01, 2013, 04:08:54 PM »
Thank you all for your suggestions.

The reason I don't move out is because I cannot afford to. There are several reasons for this. (You have to be unemployed for at least a year before you can apply for assistance and as long as I'm under a certain age my mother is obligated to support me so me moving out would mean just taking more money off of her.) Believe me, I would in a heartbeat if I could find a way without making it worse for her, because it would make our relationship a lot better.

As much as I don't like anyone sitting next to me while I'm on the computer, I think it would indeed be very useful if she could see what I'm doing and how much applications I send on average.

I also like z_squared82's suggestion of the notebook and am currently looking for one in the house  ;).

Thank you all again for everything. I suppose it's the stress of not knowing what's in store for me, how long it will take me to find something and the fact that my mothers and I's relationship is difficult even at the best of times.

NyaChan

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Re: How to handle mother?
« Reply #14 on: October 01, 2013, 04:14:37 PM »
I'm in a very similar position to you right now.  I'm at home for an indefinite amount of time while I search for a job and have no income of my own.  I also am extremely territorial about my computer as it is the only private space I have left.  The thing is, I may spend hours and hours on my computer each day, but I know very well I'm not working on applications the whole time.  To an outsider, they have no way of knowing from watching what the breakdown of my time is, so I doubt your mom realizes that she is interrupting your class or your job search rather than some web surfing. 

From your info, it seems you are under 18 or under 20, basically a minor.  When you aren't of an adult age and you are financially dependent on your parent, I think you are still in the position of being a child of the adult in terms of authority and who is in charge.  That gives your mom even more of a right to assign you chores than it would if you were an adult exchanging housework for room and board.  You can negotiate the amount of work and when the work is done, but I agree with the others that this will only be effective if you sit down and disclose more information to your mom about your plans and how you spend your day.