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Does my mum have the right to take away my computer?

Tagged as: Family, Troubled relationships<< Previous question   Next question >>
Question - (31 August 2011) 6 Answers - (Newest, 5 September 2011)
A female United Kingdom age 26-29, anonymous writes:

I'm 19, I've completed a year of university and have recently decided to take a gap year and earn money because I'm not sure if higher education is for me. My mum is threatening to take away my laptop (which she gave to me when I started uni) because she says she only bought it for my education but now that I'm dropping out, I have no right to have it. She also says that the laptop has been my downfall, and it's for my own good that it's taken away. I think she is behaving extremely unfairly; it's my life and she has no right to control it. Especially as I will be working full time to earn a living next year... Making the decision to leave university and find a job was a hard one and I am facing the consequences of this decision with as much responsibility as I can muster. I don't think my mum has any right to take my computer and I am lost for what to say to convince her. Any help would be greatly appreciated! Thank you.

View related questions: money, university

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (5 September 2011):

you have made the CHOICE to get into the real world so get real and earn YOUR real money and buy YOUR own real laptop. Real world is hard work and all must be earned...no free grants..bursaries..loans without interest..no laying in bed late...no taking time off...no popping on face book when your boss is about ..your in the real world now kid. Hope you make mum proud.

spunky monkey.

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A female reader, bunnyblueeyes United Kingdom +, writes (3 September 2011):

bunnyblueeyes agony auntIf the laptop was given to you for the purpose of university and you didn't fullfil that purpose then I thing legally she can take it back. (Check that to be sure though). As to wether she should that's up to her. Do tou need it if you're not at uni?

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A female reader, tennisstar88 United States +, writes (2 September 2011):

tennisstar88 agony auntAre you still living under your mother's roof? Her house, her rules. She can still take away your laptop, she bought it for you..and has the right to take it away if she thinks it's being misused. Even if you or her got the police involved, it's whoever paid for it and can provide proof of purchase with a receipt that will walk away with the computer.

It's best just to disregard this argument and save your money to buy another laptop.

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A female reader, CindyCares Italy + , writes (1 September 2011):

CindyCares agony aunt I think there is a bit more to the story... if your mother thinks this computer was your"downfall", probably you weren't using it moderately and occasionally and in a way compatible with the committment of higher studies. Internet can become addictive and if you were spending much time on Facebook or chatting or browsing profiles etc...it's normal that your mom thinks you WOULD be cut for higher education if you had allowed yourself less time for distractions.

Regardles... what's the big deal anyway ? You'll be working full time - get yourself another computer ! They don't cost a fortune nowadays, you can get a small "notebook " for around 200 euros. Or you can get a second hand one. Or you can simply go to an Internet point.

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A male reader, anonymous, writes (1 September 2011):

Who paid for the laptop is not the point.

She GAVE it to you as a gift. And once that happens the giver essentially signs away all rights to it.

No one likes someone who seeks a gift returned when it becomes convenient for them.

So no, o on your gap year and take the laptop with you, even if it pisses off your parents.

At some point in your life you have to start making your own decisions, irrespective of what your parents want. It's your life and not theirs. They didn't raise you to be a slave to THEIR whims and desires. They raised you to think for yourself, now show them you can.

Flynn 24

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A female reader, tennisstar88 United States +, writes (1 September 2011):

tennisstar88 agony auntIf your mother paid for it and can provide proof of purchase, then yes she can take it away from you.

The more you resist, then the more she's going to want to take it away. I would just maturely explain to her that you have uni on pause. You're unsure of your career path and need to explore more options at the moment. Point out that you don't want to waste any $ either, because of your undecidedness. Also point out it's socially acceptable to obtain a degree at any age, many people take a semester or 2 off to explore other routes...to make sure they're on the correct path in life.

If she still takes your laptop away, then fine. After you start working, then you can put back your own hard earned $ for a laptop that no one can take away.

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