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Teens: Single-Parent Households

When I was growing up the thought of getting to drive was the beginning of really growing up. A passage to adulthood, the beginning of real responsibility. That was in the 1980's, now everything has changed for all of us and our children. My mother and father were so proud of us when we took our driver's education class. For my mother it was a sign of independents for a woman. I find it hard to believe that some woman never took the time to learn how to drive. We came a long way baby! Insurance did not cost as much as it does now! Trying to give your children the right of passage will cost you a estimated 1000+ dollars a year. This is with a used car, don't get me started on new cars and new drivers at your local high school. I know there are parents that can afford this excessive amount of money for there children. But, the every day blue collar worker will be hard pressed to figure out what he or she is going to do. This is not a easy amount for some parents to produce. If you are a single parent the responsibility doubles. I know because I was a single parent. Guess what? My daughter was going to be a independent woman. I wanted to carry on the family tradition and give my child the passage to adulthood. It was not easy! Might I say numerous conversations about what would happen if she was in a wreak and the cost of said problems. My heart or mind could not wrap around what we would do if she was in a wreak. Should she or someone else get hurt! Oh My God! The insurance cost alone! The crazy thing about your child starting to drive is you are sending them to a school full of other children who are also just learning how to drive. She would come home some days telling me about the fender benders other fellow students were having. Still you must move forward, they must grow up sometime. That is why you must have the insurance. I agreed to help my daughter as long as she made good grades and kept up her school work. The insurance worked out better in monthly payments for us. Some children have a part-time job they work just to pay the insurance and have gas to drive a car. They work to drive, and drive to work. Now comes the serious topic. It is unrealistic to expect that your teenage child will not get into a wreak the first year of their driving experience. Limit as much as you can the amount of other children that ride with your child. Try to explain about the responsibility of others in the car. Now Calm yourself, realize that a wreak may happen. Hope and pray that nobody gets hurt. I got my daughter her first car, it was used, good motor, something to take her from point A and get to point B. Cost enough that if something happen it would not be the worst thing that ever happen. I could not see giving her a car that had a lot of power. I am lucky enough to have brothers that know how to work on cars for the monthly maintenance. Because, like I said they may wreak their car within the first year. I told my daughter that she would have to ride a bicycle to school if she wreaked her used car. She did so good, had some close calls and most of them was another driver that was not paying attention to what where they were going. She would ask me numerous times, mother why do you not trust me. I said it is not you that I do not trust, it is other drivers. Even if you are the best driver that you can be, following the law to the letter, that does not mean that other people will do the same. There is also the drinking and drug stories that you will hear. My daughter was so happen that she had her freedom to drive that she could not believe that other teenagers would lose it all by doing something that dumb. But it happen everyday all around America. Her Senior year! One week after she had her licenses for a year. I being the proud mother bragged about her not having a wreak. She got us to go to school running a little late, she run her car into a light pole. Driving to school she looked down to make sure she had the right books and homework. Enough time to run off the road, she over corrected and hit a light pole. I can tell you that my heart stopped, when I got the telephone call! The car was totaled, air bags came out. She cried, her nerves shot! The car centered the light pole, I could only thank God, she was all right! She even went to school that day and cried more. Later she came to me and ask, “Why are you not mad at me.” My reply, “Riding the bus to school your Senior year is enough punishment.” It took a lot of work and time to save up enough money for another car. In the end, she is now 25 years-old and a good driver, and knows the importance of insurance.