Arrow-right Camera
The Spokesman-Review Newspaper

The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
News >  Features

Time to motivate game-playing son

Kathy Mitchell

Dear Annie: Our son graduated from college more than two years ago. He has not looked for a job, nor does he have a résumé. He claims that he can’t put a résumé together because he didn’t participate in any school activities and has no job experience, although he has done quite a bit of volunteer work at his church.

He spends much of his time playing video games. Currently, he plays all night. He goes to bed when other people are just waking up and then sleeps until late afternoon.

We have never pushed him hard. He helps some around the house, but my wife and I like to do things ourselves. Our son is intelligent and moral, does not drink or smoke, and is well liked. But I worry about his lack of ambition. He refuses to talk to a counselor to determine whether something is holding him back. I’ve told him that unless he shows some initiative, he eventually will be too old for anyone to want to hire him. He doesn’t want any of the part-time jobs that are easily available, because he says he cannot learn anything from them. I’ve said he should at least show he is willing to work. Do you have any suggestions? – Frustrated Dad

Dear Dad: Stop waiting for your son to show initiative and give him some motivation. Tell him he has three weeks to get a job because you will be charging him rent. And make the amount large enough to require an income. Don’t back down. If he doesn’t like it, he can mooch off of someone else. Offer to help him put together a résumé. Two years of lazing around playing video games is not going to inspire confidence in his work ethic, but the longer he waits the harder it will be.

Annie’s Mailbox is written by Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar, longtime editors of the Ann Landers column. Please email your questions to anniesmailbox@
The Spokesman-Review Newspaper

Local journalism is essential.

Give directly to The Spokesman-Review's Northwest Passages community forums series -- which helps to offset the costs of several reporter and editor positions at the newspaper -- by using the easy options below. Gifts processed in this system are not tax deductible, but are predominately used to help meet the local financial requirements needed to receive national matching-grant funds.

Active Person

Subscribe now to get breaking news alerts in your email inbox

Get breaking news delivered to your inbox as it happens.