The Washington Post

Helping an unemployed college grad organize his life

From elsewhere in The Post: When a college graduate struggles to find a job and shuts his family out of his life, his parent asks Marguerite Kelly for help.

“When my husband and I last spoke with him, we asked him to tell us why he isn’t applying for a job, what his girlfriend is like and what he wants in life. His answers were:

I don’t want to be rejected;

I don’t want to talk about my girlfriend and

I don’t know what I want in life.

It makes me very sad that our son will not communicate with us,” says the letter writer.

Depression may be preventing this young man from succeeding, says Kelly. “Tell the doctor about your worries and ask her to give your son a thorough physical and a drug test, too. If she can’t find the cause of the problem, she may think he needs an antidepressant and talk therapy, the combo that works best for depression.”

She also reminds the parent that young adults in their 20s are at a critical point in their lives. “Suddenly, they realize that they need to know things that couldn’t be taught in school, such as what kind of careers they should have, where they should live and if they should move in with their girlfriends and boyfriends or marry them or move on,” Kelly says.

Encouraging his good ideas and listening to him without giving any advice, says Kelly, will help him pull his life together.

Marguerite Kelly will be online today at noon for her monthly Web chat. Submit questions now.


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