Although not a bad driver, her inexperience and crazy other drivers scare me silly which is why we’ve enrolled my daughter in private Driving Lessons.
When I was in high school we had to complete mandatory professionally instructed behind-the-wheel training before we could apply for a driver’s license. Not so anymore in Florida. The behind-the-wheel training requirement is now on the honor system as long as one passes the DMV driving test.
Further, the DMV doesn’t even care if you can parallel park anymore!
And forget about learning to drive a stick shift, which I personally believe is one of those life skills that everyone should have. A skill which came in handy while renting a vehicle in Nicaragua a few months ago.
After many hours of screaming, inhaling sharply, pumping my imaginary brake on the passenger side floorboard, and death gripping the “Jesus Bar,” I decided I probably am not the most patient driving instructor for my daughter. So private lessons it is.
Of course, being the detailed oriented mom that I am [daughter’s translation: “anal mom that I am”], I have other prerequisites to her obtaining her driver’s license too, like:
- Signing a Teen Driving Contract (many are available free online)
- Running a tracking app on her phone so I know where she is at all times (Life 360 has a free version)
- Running a No Text & Drive app on her phone which prevents her from texting while driving
Like most moms, I try to walk that fine line of protecting my kids while also allowing them more independence and freedom as they mature. After all, my daughter will be off to college in just two years and I want her to be mentally and emotionally prepared.
But as a teenager still living at home, I, the MOM, still get to set the boundaries of my daughter’s independence.
As parents, my estate planning clients also have to decide how much control they want to maintain over their kids from the grave.
For some clients, continued control over their hard earned money after they pass is very important. For others, continued protection for their kids from themselves, potential creditors or predators, is a priority. For yet other clients, they’re ok with their kids inheriting outright, even knowing their kids might not manage their finances the way they might want them to.
There’s no right or wrong answer. It boils down to the priorities of each client.
Though in my estate planning practice, I counsel towards practical, effective solutions that don’t micro-manage a child’s inheritance unnecessarily, as a mom of a teenage driver, I guess I’m still a bit of a control freak. Sorry, Daughter.
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