I'm 18 and I live with my parents, I also have two younger sisters. Ever since I was younger until now nothing changed in terms of their parenting with me. I have to go to bed at X hours and many other things that takes out my autonomy. (it's kinda embarrasing have to end a conversation with someone because your mom orders you to go sleep at 11pm..). This occurs, I guess, because my parents want to give equal parenting to me and my sisters. But that's not the point (maybe for another question?).

Note: It's money that my family gave me and money that I collect for future things and can't go into my pocket basically. I don't have a bank account (and opening one isn't probably a solution because I'm not looking for a job right now).


As usual we buy things for ourselves, I, being a technology lover, likes to get something new from time to time. The big deal is: i have my savings stored in a moneybox, BUT, that moneybox is hidden somewhere in the house and I don't have access to them. To use my cash I have to request my mom for that and with detailed information of "what's the money for?". As you might ask, this is awful and even when she accepts my request she asks a million times "is it worth it?". And sometimes it could go very wrong, like in the incident 1.

Incident 1

I saw a sale for a game "Rocket League" and I decided to buy. Asked my mom and I get the usual questionary of the cash. She gave it to me the money I needed after a long discussion. A few hours later I saw that if I spend 5 euros more I get some DLC's which is a great deal. When I said to her that I need the extra she got all pissed off (yes, she got pissed for 20€ to spend on a game). Since then I really don't ask for anything else except on the holidays or something.


With these rules I can't simply buy condoms for the reason that she will ask me awkward questions about it and it sucks. So, since I'm 18 now and I don't want to be treated any longer like I'm 13, how can I tell my mom that from now I can/should manage my own cash?

(Feel free to edit my question if something is misspelled or if I'm not being clear enough, thanks)

  • 2
    Welcome to interpersonal skills. Please take a moment to read the help center. If all you want to do is tell your mom, then use your words and say "I can/should manage my own cash?" If you have a different more specific concern please edit your question to focus on that.
    – sphennings
    Commented Mar 15, 2018 at 12:07
  • 2
    You don't have your own bank account? How would your parents react to you opening one yourself? If you get a job soon, it will be all the more vital that your money stays where you have control of it.
    – user8671
    Commented Mar 15, 2018 at 14:11
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    It would help to know where this is happening. East Asian parenting, for instance, is very different from US middle-class parenting Commented Dec 2, 2020 at 14:51
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    @baldPrussian heyo, if you're still interested in giving input in the question, I'm from Portugal. Eventually what solved this question was opening a bank account :)
    – CaldeiraG
    Commented Dec 2, 2020 at 15:03
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    It's not unusual for kids to have bank accounts. Here in Belgium I think you can have your own bank account from the age of 12, but of course your parents have to sign for it, and they have access to it to some extent. Then from 18 you're free to open a new account or keep that one, and your parents automatically lose any access they have to it
    – Laurent S.
    Commented Dec 3, 2020 at 13:20

4 Answers 4


There are a few things you could do, depending on your situation and the character of your mother and you.

For matters such as the condoms. Realise that all mothers dislike seeing their children grow up. It is letting go for them, and letting go hurts. My mother had this as well with me and my brother. What you could try (But this depends highly on what kind of person your mother is and what your dynamic with her is) is asking her for money. When she asks what for it is, just tell her. "I need condoms." It will be embarasing, but also for her. And sometimes a mom needs a shock like that to fully realise 'Hey, my boy is growing up'.

Again, this can work badly as well. Especially if your mother is the type of helicopter parent or very old fashioned.

As others have said, get a job. This could be part time or a student job. (If these are options where you live). I had weekend and part time jobs from age 17 to 24, as I was in college. I made a rule for myself that I would save half of it into my savings account (the box in your case) and the other half I used to buy things I like. My mom found this okay, and was even happy I was putting money into my savings account.

Game specific advice. Again this depends on how your mom is as a person. I play games often, and whenever my mom used to complain about me buying a new game, I would retaliate with something along the lines of "Well, would you rather have me snort coke and pump my money into that?"

My relationship with my mother is special, and many of my friends comment on our dynamic. As we swear more with each other than other families usually do. So again, adjust this to your own dynamic with your mother. But I surely think she would rather have you play video games then do drugs.

Make the point that you are old enough now to handle at least some part of your finances. What I did is that I agreed with my mom that I saved half of everything I got. Birthday money, jobs I did, ... I ended up saving more than that, because I did not buy so much after all. But you could get to an agreement like this with your mother as well.

Lastly, there is a thing to understand about parents. They care for you and want the best for you. And they want you to not make the same mistakes as they did. I am sure they 'wasted' money on things when they were young, or perhaps your parents are very hard workers and know the value of money. In either case, this makes them more defensive on subjects about money and makes them eager to handle these things for you. My parents were like this and it took a while before they fully trusted me. I still get lectures now and then when I buy something. It is just how your parents are. So don't expect this to be gone in a few months time.

This is not about having them to stop doing that. It is rather about setting boundaries, and moving those as you grow older.

  • I do like this answer! And I definitely will put in place some of these points and you covered all things. In response of some: I could get a job but right now, it isn't a option but it would be a way to fix my problem. My mom and I have a good relationship and she let me go out, etc but lately since I'm more conscient she doesn't seem to see the whole thing. And the game specific advise: will definitely use that as a argument! Thanks for the tips!
    – CaldeiraG
    Commented Mar 15, 2018 at 21:53

I was in a similar position to you maybe just a year or two younger when I decided I wanted to manage my own money and do what I wanted with it. A large majority of the time, parents keep money as they do not trust their child with the money or do not want them buying bad things such as drugs and strippers etc...

Essentially the only thing you can do is tell your Mam how it is, that you're all grown up and that she will have to trust you some day. On top of this you should state that you find it diminishing and embarrassing that your Mam is stating such rules upon you even though you could be classed as an adult especially since this money is technically yours, she can't stop you from having it.

If this isn't going to work for you I could suggest getting a part time job and opening up a bank account just to get yourself some money and storing it away from your Mother which she has no control over at all especially since you earned it. Once I got my part time job (I know it can be hard, different topic though) my Mother started trusting me with my money as she noticed I wasn't spending it all and I was earning and saving at the same time so she couldn't really complain

  • Getting a job isn't a solution for me (my parents don't let me take a gap year and encourage me to get a degree instead).
    – CaldeiraG
    Commented Mar 15, 2018 at 14:21
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    Could you not get a job around your study? even just a couple hours here and there
    – Twyxz
    Commented Mar 15, 2018 at 14:22
  • I also got money from my school because of my good grades but still, they don't trust me and probably they suppose that I would spend it all on useless things which isn't true at all.
    – CaldeiraG
    Commented Mar 15, 2018 at 14:23
  • Not right now, actually i'm doing an internship, and after that I have lot of things to do
    – CaldeiraG
    Commented Mar 15, 2018 at 14:25

It sounds to me as though this is your parents money, not yours and when looking at it from that perspective the answer to "how can I tell my mum that I should manage that money" becomes: Don't, your parents have the right to spend their money how they want. To buy things like games or condoms you should either get a job or suffer through asking your parents.

There is a distinct difference between giving that money to you, and putting that money away safe and promising to give it to you when you are older or if you need it. From your comment "It's money that my family gave me and money that I collect for future things and can't go into my pocket" it sounds like at the time they 'gave' you the money, it was theirs (not yours) and so really they can put whatever restrictions on THAT money they want. In this case they chose to promise you that you would get the money when you are older, or where they deem it worthwhile. This money is not yours to do with what you want, it is theirs and they are letting you use it, putting that money in a box is only symbolism for how it is promised to you, and also possibly convenient so they don't have to keep track. If you want to use that money, then I do not see any reasonable way to do that other than by following the condition on which your parents promised to give it to you (convince them it is worthwhile). I don't see how this has anything to do with being perceived as childish, giving people money on certain conditions exists everywhere in the adult world.

This advice is mostly based around my personal experiences earning, spending and making money related decisions. When I was younger I even had similar agreements with my own parents. Cases of them saying to 10 year old me "if you promise to clean your room you can have this $5 to can go buy an ice cream and then bring me the change" all the way having recently moved out, and the number of students I was tutoring dropped right down so they said "we will pay your rent for one month because we don't want you to be sleeping on the street, but you will have to find another job by then". In each of these cases it is clear that the money was not mine to use as I wanted, the money was theirs and they just happened to be spending it on me.

If something that costs money is important for you to get then like everyone else you will have to find a way to get that money or suffer without. You are fortunate enough that your parents have a sum of money that they promised to give to you, and that they will give if you need. If asking them is too hard for you then get a job and earn your own money.

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    If you are earning money, and your parents are taking it and locking/holding it then my answer does not really apply. There would be a whole kettle of other problems if that were the case, my answer is really only valid if all of this money they are putting away for you was theirs to begin with
    – Jesse
    Commented Mar 24, 2018 at 14:59

I'll provide you two very different answer :

If it's your parents that give you the money, then they have every rights to ask you whatever they want to know about what you're going to do with it. I'm okay with you that sucks, but you can't do anything about it.

It seems that the way you get your money is a little more diversified, so then you need to emancipate yourself. There's no easy way to do that, sit with your mom and dad, and go for it :

Mom, Dad, I'm a grown up now, you can trust me, you can rely on me, and I'm going to do my own choices regardless of what you think of them, because this is my life, you cannot decide for me anymore. I really appreciate the shelter you provide me as parents, but I need be more proactive with my life and I need to begin to do my own choices now.

Here they'll probably ask you what you're talking about, because if they treat you as if you're 13, when you're 18, then you probably didn't show them that you were growing up. Now go for it :

That's not an ultimatum of any kind, I'd like to keep talking to you about my life and I wish to have your advices on the choices I'm going to make in the future, but you can not decide for me anymore... Well, to begin with, I really wish to manage my own money, firstly because this is a skill I'm going to need for my grownup life, but also because I believe I'm old enough to do so. And I think that I'm old enough and that you can not choose for me the time I go to bed at night and wake up on the morning. Those are very personal matters and I can take care for myself, I'm not a child anymore.

If your family is not too afraid to talk about stuff you can even add :

What if for instance I have to buy some condoms ? I should ask Mom to get my cash for condoms ? Honestly I'm not comfortable enough to ask for that on a hurry, if you know what I mean ...

I think that at some point in life you need to make things clear with your parents, but don't go too far, you need to make them know that you still need them, and that you're grateful for all they did and will do for you, even though you need to grow up a little bit more on your side.

  • 1
    Thanks for the answer! You approached the main topics and a way to tell this to my parents, will definitely keep your advice! Fortunely my family is not that old-fashioned and it could go well. Thanks, once again
    – CaldeiraG
    Commented Apr 6, 2018 at 13:43

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