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Ask Kym Tolson, LCSW, CSAC, NBCCH Your Ow...
Kym Tolson, LCSW, CSAC, NBCCH, Therapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 251
Experience:  Over 15 years of experience as a substance abuse therapist. I am a Licensed Clinical Social Worker
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I am a 18 year old college student from NYC and I am struggling

Customer Question

I am a 18 year old college student from NYC and I am struggling miserably with my mother because she doesn't let me go. How do I declare independence?
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  Kym Tolson, LCSW, CSAC, NBCCH replied 6 years ago.
Hello Rsamuel,
Thank you for using JustAnswer! Sorry to hear you are going through this with your mother. The best way to deal with this situation is to begin setting boundaries with your mother. Here is a great tutorial to get you started. One thing to keep in mind when setting healthy boundaries is that the person may not like it at first. They may get mad or hurt but if you stick to the boundary you set they will eventually come around. If the tutorial is not helpful enough you might also want to read this book.

I hope this answer helps. Please let me know if you have any other questions or if you need clarification for this answer.

Take care,

Edited by Kym Tolson, LCSW, CSAC, NBCCH on 1/2/2010 at 2:20 AM EST
Kym Tolson, LCSW, CSAC, NBCCH and other Mental Health Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 6 years ago.

Thanks for the reply. I also wanted to know if it is healthy to feel guilty about leaving my mother to go out with friends because my mother is a single parent and it is just me and her. So when I leave, she's all by herself and I feel that she lashes out at me because I'm leaving her to be with other people. I've had this problem with my mom since I started dating my first boyfriend and since then, she's been treating me differently

Expert:  Kym Tolson, LCSW, CSAC, NBCCH replied 6 years ago.
Hi again,
Thanks for this question as well. There is a saying about guilt. If you are doing something to intentionally hurt someone then the guilt is an appropriate emotion. Do you think you are trying to hurt her when you want to leave and spend time with your friends? I'm thinking probably not, so it may be a little unhealthy to feel guilt about this. Sometimes when children grow up with single parents they get put in a role of "best friend" or even the missing spouse for the parent. Which can be really confusing and guilt producing when the child tries to leave and go on with their life. This moving on is a very normal and healthy step in your development. Hopefully your mom will be able to let go and not cause you to feel this guilt in the future.

I hope this answer helps as well.

Take care,

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