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Advice Needed:High school graduate loves graffitti

Posted by on Jun. 16, 2014 at 4:40 PM
  • 10 Replies

My son just graduated high school with a 2.8. weighted 3.2. We have signed him up for the local college. Our problem is all he wants to do is go out and skateboard and grafitti which is against the law. We are out of options other than kicking him out of the house. We have taken away his phone etc. He does not desire a car (too much responsibility he says) He is 18 now and if he gets caught its his problem. But it is also ours he is our son. We are not sure what is going on in his mind but we love him very much, we know we cannot force him to grow up. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. I will be checking back. thank you in advance...

Pepperann

by on Jun. 16, 2014 at 4:40 PM
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Replies (1-10):
atlmom2
by Susie on Jun. 16, 2014 at 4:44 PM
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i would not pay for college unless he straightens up and gets serious.  It sounds like it would be a waste of your money.  If he can't go by your rules give him 30 days to move out.  Loving him doesn't factor into this.  Every parent loves their kids but he may need a school of hard knocks. 

Niccalyn
by Bronze Member on Jun. 16, 2014 at 4:57 PM
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Is it possible that he needs an artistic outlet, which is why he is turning to grafitti?  A lot of grafitti is actually very artistic and beautiful.  If he had another way to express that side of himself (art classes perhaps?), maybe he wouldn't be so drawn to it?  Maybe try asking him what it would take to get him to quit.  Good luck!

Maverick1957
by Member on Jun. 17, 2014 at 3:38 AM
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Sounds like a last summer fling yet I agree, if he gets caught?  He's on his own.   (Still he needs to cut that out if he's planning on college.)

Turning 18 ...it's not just a slap on the hand any longer.  He'll be treated  as adult.  We're going through HELL with SS right now.  He's currently in county jail.

Your DS needs to abide by your rules as long as he's living w/you. Also he needs to understand that if he gets arrested for the grafiti he is doing.  Agree with other poster, maybe offer him art classes as a creative outlet.

pepperannrocks
by Member on Jun. 17, 2014 at 10:38 AM

He spent a year in drafting he hated it CAD computer animated design is the new technology he is a free hander and I think he loves the thrill of painting large (very large) 3D murals. He if very aware of the legal consciquences. He has tunnel vision I have told him if he can get out of that tunnel and try 10 different things he would eventually like one.. We have florida prepaid, but if he does not stay in class we will withdraw him and get a refund. Our main concern is to try and encourage him to find another outlet without being a helicopter parent. I don't think he realizes how much potential he has. He is determined to fight the system and there are ways that are not illegal.... Short of paying 40K a year at one of the best art institutes in south florida, its just not possible. I really wanted him to try and find an outlet on his own but should I continue to do his research for him and enable (helicopter) his growth or do tell him to find his own way with tough love? I'm so confused.

CMay2CK
by on Jun. 17, 2014 at 10:52 AM
3 moms liked this
Ditto. Find out if there are any programs in your area that support graffiti style art. My nephews (19) were part of a group that went around town doing murals on privately owned commercial building walls. They loved it.

Quoting Niccalyn:

Is it possible that he needs an artistic outlet, which is why he is turning to grafitti?  A lot of grafitti is actually very artistic and beautiful.  If he had another way to express that side of himself (art classes perhaps?), maybe he wouldn't be so drawn to it?  Maybe try asking him what it would take to get him to quit.  Good luck!

meg1012
by Member on Jun. 17, 2014 at 2:22 PM
1 mom liked this

This was my husband's story- He caused my in laws alot of heartache over the years and spent alot of money paying restitution and now has a few vandalism charges on your record. He started at about 18 and grew out of it after about ten years. There was nothing his family could say to change him- he loved the art, he loved the thrill and he loved the comradie. Maybe in your town they have legal outlets like they do here in LA? Unfortunately that is not always the answer because half of it is the notoriety which you don't get from doing graff legally. Also, that lifestyle results in some major hurdles in maturity. Most of the guys I know that did it were 20s something teenagers! I would recommend not supporting him financially at all while he is participating in that. Sorry to hear your'e going though this!

pepperannrocks
by Member on Jun. 18, 2014 at 12:11 PM
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Thank you somuch for your support and you are absolutely correct with the notoriety. All of your support means a lot to me. We are working through this and praying as well. I took his phone also I am not paying for that either. We have a government contract with the city we own Auto parts stores. The city held a meeting with regard to the graffitti in our own town. If they find out this is our son we could lose that contract! We have had several screaming matches (of course he is remourseful and never disrepectful) We are working through this with the help of and advice from all of you. Thank you so much!

Quoting meg1012:

This was my husband's story- He caused my in laws alot of heartache over the years and spent alot of money paying restitution and now has a few vandalism charges on your record. He started at about 18 and grew out of it after about ten years. There was nothing his family could say to change him- he loved the art, he loved the thrill and he loved the comradie. Maybe in your town they have legal outlets like they do here in LA? Unfortunately that is not always the answer because half of it is the notoriety which you don't get from doing graff legally. Also, that lifestyle results in some major hurdles in maturity. Most of the guys I know that did it were 20s something teenagers! I would recommend not supporting him financially at all while he is participating in that. Sorry to hear your'e going though this!


Pepperann

nana776
by Member on Jun. 18, 2014 at 12:18 PM

Buy a big roll of butcher paper and line the walls of his room with it, and then let him have at it. When he fills it up, just put up some fresh paper. I would also talk to him and see if there are some other ways that he can express himself (legally) that he would be interested in.

I would also check and see if there are any art co-ops around you that he can get involved in. They may have some ideas too. 

Ewa101
by Bronze Member on Jun. 19, 2014 at 7:23 AM
1 mom liked this

My initial answer would be what others have already recommended - let him find a legal way to express his art.  However, having read through the responses, I realized that the thrill is two fold - yes, he is artistic, but also I guess he likes the thrill of getting away with the illegal activity.  What could replace the thrill?  Maybe volunteer work with kids of incarcerated parents?  Since he seems to be respectful to you, maybe you could calmly explain to him the consequences, including how he endangers your livelihood.  Ask him to think of solutions, perhaps therapy?  I am not an advocate for tough love.  I am a mother who will always stand by my child no matter what he/ she does.  Good luck, and let us know what, if any, solution you have found.

pepperannrocks
by Member on Jun. 23, 2014 at 6:14 PM

BUMP!

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