View Full Version : Paid to leave town

08-27-2007, 10:17 AM
And here is yet another thing that weighs heavily on my mind this week and now that I'm the only one of the three alive I feel more free to discuss this.

Years ago when I was just a couple of years out of high school and before I joined the service I was working a full time job and living at home. Granted my full time job was fast food, I was working though. I had been going to school full time (including the summer) and I had let my Pell Grant expire without renewing, so I didn't have the money to go back to school.

About this time my Grandmother and my Uncle approched me with an offer. Basicly the offer was that they would bankroll me $1,000 if I would move out of town and get a job somewhere else. There were some stipulations applied to this money. One was I had to move more than 100 miles away and the other was I couldn't come back to town for a min. of 1 year. If any of these stipulations were violated I had to pay the money back.

At 19 this is a helluva deal. So I took it without a second thought and signed their handwritten contract to seal the deal.

This was a major turning point in my life. This is where I almost lost my way to the wrong way, this is where I almost lost my life in a car wreck, this is where I never finished my education, but this is also where I joined the military and turned it around.

So you see this was the time I went from being a boy to being a man, right or wrong this was it.

I had never talked to anyone in the family about this before but after Grandma's funeral me and my sister talked about it. She didn't know that I was given money to leave town and not come back. She said that she had always wondered why I left at that time, esp that during this time was when my Mom was having serious problems with depression and was spending weeks at a time in rehab center for depression. Basicly my sister and myself were left at home by ourselves. So she never understood why I left and why I've always had some bitterness toward Grandma.

You see this $1,000 would have paid the next year at school easily (just a two year tech school) and I would have had my associates degeree. But instead I was sent away by myself.

I will never know the real reason behind the decission to offer me money to leave town and I suspect I will always be a little bitter about it.


Andrew Craig-Bennett
08-27-2007, 10:21 AM
Well, that certainly goes into the category of Great Mistakes in Handling Adolescents.

08-27-2007, 10:27 AM
Maybe they thought your mother would be better if she didn't have to worry about you?

What did you do with that year?

08-27-2007, 10:29 AM
I will never know the real reason behind the decission to offer me money to leave town and I suspect I will always be a little bitter about it.

Interesting. Do you have any guesses as to why they wanted you out of town?


Leon m
08-27-2007, 10:29 AM
Sorry for your rough times Chad...Life can be hard...But if thats what has made you the good man you are today, it was all worth it.

Domesticated_Mr. Know It All
08-27-2007, 10:32 AM
Everything happens for a reason Chad.
I think you turned out fine.
Your experiences make you who you are.

Phillip Allen
08-27-2007, 10:42 AM
I have thoughts about this but they are unorganized at this time...Adults NEVER seem to understand that children are more aware, smarter and have longer memories than anticipated! This includes all of us...i include myself! I try very hard to remember that things done in my childhood by the adults around me (that they counted on being forgotton) ARE remembered and that the adult's intended lesson may not be the same lesson as that learned by the child!

08-27-2007, 11:13 AM
You ask what I did in that year. Well I took a job working construction and spent all of my money on partying. Even took a second job working third shift to help pay for partying. Crashed my car and bounced off the windshield and joined the Air Force the next day hoping that this would straighten my life out.

I look back at all the wrong turns made during my life and realize that these wrong turns got me to where I'm at at and I"m happy here.

Why did they do it? I'll never know for sure being as both have passed away. I suspect that it had something to do with trying the shotgun method to make me grow up.

I don't think it was done to ease the pressure off of my Mom, being as Grandma and Mom were not the best of friends.

I don't really know. I do know that $1,000 would have helped me continue my education (which is still not finished).

I was the eldest of the grandchildren and I marvel at how each was handled differently. I was the one that was given the tough love and the youngest was just the opposite. In fact he lived with Grandma up until his mid to late 20's and was even recieving finacially support from her up until her death, now he has the rough road and is having to really be on his own for the first time in his life. Glad I learned that lessson sooner rather than later.

She used to defend her actions to me about him. She would say that his Dad had died when he was young and he needed her. Of course the fact that my Dad died while I was young didn't figure into it. I was the same age as him, but she said I had a sister (she was younger than me) to help me.

Sorry if I ramble on, I just wonder about this and how it has affected my life and now I will never have any answers.


jack grebe
08-27-2007, 08:11 PM
Did you ever thank your grandma?

Did you ever think that maybe your grandma saw something in you, something that would never come to fruitation if you stayed in the life you were leading? Did she see that you needed to get out to have any chance to become what you needed to be?

08-27-2007, 09:52 PM
My mum used to make and wrap my lunch for me.
I left home when she wrapped it in a road map.
I can take a hint.

The Bigfella
08-27-2007, 09:58 PM
I didn't need a hint. I jumped on the train to Sydney the week my final high school exams finished.

08-27-2007, 10:13 PM
Some of yoiur posts make me feel extremely fortunate to have had the parents that I had. I still have my mother.

Wild Dingo
08-28-2007, 03:01 AM
not to make light of your situation back then Chad... but brother I wish some buggar had offered ME $1000 to buggar of back then!! Heck 100 would have done the trick... instead I hitched a lift on the back of the wool truck with a packet of tabacco some papers a bag of sandwiches and a waterbag... a quick nod from my uncles and a wave from my sisters and gone

But you know something mate? The best thing that ever happened to me was getting on that truck and getting away... unlike you I was just on 14 totally uneducated and all in all it created in me a desire a yearning to LEARN everything no matter what or by who but to learn!

I returned and was kicked out more times than not simply due to mums changing life at the times... too many mouths to feed no spare beds or room so she would pack my bag and stick it on the verandah with a note "see you later son" and it was time to buggar off again... gave me the utter shytes most times as I felt like the black sheep that no one gave a flying rats bum about... but it was the best thing for her the others and for me in the end took a bloody long time for me to work that out though

Your okay in my book Chad so take it easy on yourself eh? an on your memory of the olds okay?

So tuff love is good love... they did the right thing mate

Henning 4148
08-28-2007, 01:02 PM
Assuming your Grandma had some sense in her. In that case, I guess she sent you away because you were going nowhere the way you were going then. From what you write, it was all partying, probably alcohol, bad company, perhaps drugs, whatever. She may have seen people going down this road before, when she was younger. Also, you had managed not to have the money for the new term available (although you probably could have), so you were doomed to drop out anyway. What would have followed might have been unskilled jobs, lack of self confidence, alcohol, sinking fast.

Also, for some people, the place where they were raised is not the place where they fit. For these people, to flourish, they have to find a new home.

Your Grandmother may have seen all this.

Giving you money to travel, see the world and come to your senses / find your place sounds like a sensible idea in such circumstances. Nothing to get people to take responsibility for themselves than to put them at the mercy of their own wit. If she had paid for your second year, you still might have made it, but I guess her opinion was, that you were going down fast the way you were going. And you nearly sank. Something like a car crash is needed for some to collect their senses.