Portrait of friendly students sitting in college library and doing homework

Have you ever thought about whether your young adult is ready to go out unassisted into the world? Are you the type of parent who does everything for your teenager and they let you?

A friend of mine told me years ago that when he first went to college and shared a room with another student, that other student was incapable of packing his bag to go home for a long weekend and my friend had to show him how! Furthermore he did no washing for the semester and took it all home for his ever-doting mother to wash!

Presumably the mother thought that he would marry young and have a wife to look after him or maybe she didn’t think about it at all.

Since many people do not marry early in life or maybe never at all, there are some essentials that both sexes should have mastered before they leave home.

Here are some suggestions.


Can they cook a meal, eggs, bacon, toast, soup, meats, vegetables and make a salad?

Do they know what a balanced meal is, know their basic food groups and prepare meals for the day or week?

Can they recognize if foods are spoiled?


Can they select fresh fruits and vegetables, budget and purchase a week’s supply of food?

Compare prices and sizes, take advantage of sales and understand what foods have a short or long shelf life?

Make a shopping list?


Plan a wardrobe, buy shoes that fit, recognize material types, check garment quality, check seams for quality, recognize a bargain, calculate percentages on sales, price comparison, keep receipts and know how to return items?

Home Maintenance

Can they replace a light switch, bulb, fuse, door hinge, doorknob?

Hang a picture, paint a room, paint trim on a house, clean the gutters, mow the yard, put up a shelf, set a thermostat, replace and clean furnace and air-conditioner filters, defrost a refrigerator, clean the stove and oven, have a key made, clean the house, get rid of cockroaches and mice, make a bed, tell which clothes should be laundered and which dry-cleaned, wash and iron clothing, use of cleaning fluids, simple mending and sewing on buttons, contact the landlord or a contractor for more serious problems?


Can they operate a toaster, stove, vacuum cleaner, dishwasher, washing machine, lawn mower, garbage disposal, electric mixer, oven, or iron?

Can they use a hammer, screwdriver, pliers, hand drill, handsaw, level and square?


Can they clean a cut, apply simple bandages, treat a minor burn, apply a tourniquet, help someone from choking on food, give mouth to mouth resuscitation, recognize symptoms of colds, know when to use home remedies and when to go to the doctor, take simple medications, identify minor infections, use a thermometer, swim, how to perform healthy physical exercise?

Personal Grooming

Can they bathe, wash hair, brush teeth, manicure nails etc., use deodorant, buy toiletries, understand the importance of having a neat, well-groomed appearance and the importance of clean clothing and shoes?


Do they know the biological basics of sex, birth control, sexual hygiene, feel they can discuss problems with you and where to seek professional advice?


Can they dial a long distance number, call collect, readily find emergency numbers, compose a letter, speak confidently and clearly in public and converse well in conversation?


Can they use the public transport systems, drive a car safely, recognize minor mechanical problems, take a car to a reputable mechanic, change a tire, check the oil, water, transmission fluid and the windshield washer fluid, make sure that the car receives proper maintenance?


Can they apply for a job, fill out an application, write a business letter, mail packages, obtain a social security card, apply for credit, use a credit card, pay monthly bills, open bank accounts, use and balance a check book, apply for a loan, fill out Income tax forms, understand mortgage loans and small loan contracts?

This is a list of goals that over a few years can be accomplished, it is NOT A TEST! Don’t expect to be able to teach all of this in a 4-hour session.

A teen that can’t do most of these things is considered a child, a teen that can do them to a fair or good degree is considered an adolescent and a teen who is excellent in all these areas is considered a teenage adult – well done if you’ve been able to teach them these tasks.

If your teen can’t do most of these things then it is time to start and slowly cover the tasks that are missing. If your child is unable to learn most of these things because your teenager has ADD or ADHD, then you can refer to my previous blog ‘Organizing with ADHD’. You can support your child in overcoming the challenges of learning these tasks by having your child’s logic brain opened or activated with Crossinology Brain Integration Technique. This drug-free non-invasive technique activates both sides of the brain so that all tasks are achievable for school and for life. For most people 8 hours of treatment will permanently eliminate ADD and ADHD.


Susan McCrossin,


Posted in:ADD/ADDHD