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  • New to this forum and need some help

    Hi I am new to this forum and I have a problem. I am currently 16 and a Life Scout. I am dealing with a problem which is most likely a popular problem among scouts, but more obviously less important to adults. I am dealing with the no license till Eagle Scout rule. Now some people might now start asking, "Why don't you just get eagle", or "What did you do that make your parents want to withhold your license." Well that is my problem, I am working on my eagle, but it is not a do it in one day type of thing. I am not a spoiled brat, I don't expect my parents to buy me a car, or gas, or anything like that. I always buy my own stuff and my parents trust me a lot. When I asked my parents why, they said that they wanted to motivate me to get eagle. I have until I am 18 and I am starting to work on it right now. It would give me more motivation if I could get my license already. I just need some advice to see if I can get my license. I am in 10th grade and I have always been a little older then everyone else, and I couldn't wait till I was 16 to get my license. Now every one is getting theirs and wondering why I don't have mine, and I have to explain that I am not in trouble I just have to get Eagle. I really need some advice, and please don't give me the just get eagle, or the talk to your parents. I have tried talking to them, I just need some good reasoning for me to use. Also please don't give me the, "They are probably scared of you driving." They are not, I have ridden 4wheelers for years by myself in the woods and with friends, they are fine with me driving.

  • #2
    Your parents need to learn to let you do things on your own. If they have to hold your license over your head to earn Eagle, what will they hold over your head to finish your college degree or go to work? Eagle should be something a Scout earns because he wants it. Not through bribery.


    • #3
      I agree! This is something I do want! I want to get Eagle, I just wish I could get my licence also. I could understand a little more if I was 17 and I hadn't even started thinking about Eagle. I am though, I started the process with my scout master and I have an idea picked out.


      • Sentinel947
        Sentinel947 commented
        Editing a comment
        When I was working on my Eagle project 3 short years ago, I found being able to drive myself was invaluable. Not having to factor my parents availability into meetings with the beneficiary or my project coach was nice.

        That being said my parents took a hands off approach to my Scouting. If your parents don't, there probably isn't much you can say to convince em.

        Best of luck on your project. Keep active in your unit.


    • #4
      As a guy who worked on his Eagle project 35 years ago, without a license, here's my take: if you want your license, obey your parents and finish Eagle first.

      Yes, I know that is precisely what you said you didn't want to hear. But it's the only answer, and one you must accept gracefully, if you are going to live up to the Oath and Law.

      I've met several adult Eagles (and one Gold Award) over the years who were under the same parental requirement. All of them said the same thing: they didn't like it at the time, but with time came wisdom, and they grew to understand what their parents were trying to impart.

      Parents have their reasons. You may not agree with it, but you must obey and respect it.

      Your ability to drive four wheelers in the woods has little bearing on your ability to drive on the road. Over the years, I've been to waaaaaay too many funerals of teens and 20-somethings that thought they were bullet-proof and invincible on a motorcycle or behind the wheel of a car.

      Part of being an adult is learning to accept the word "no" with dignity. Not an easy thing to do. But it's an invaluable skill to learn, because you'll hear it throughout your life, even in the pursuit of things that are right and proper and for the benefit of others.

      There are times you work thru "no" (or the second or third "no") and times you just accept the facts and move on. In this case, if your parents say no, the only answer is yes sir/yes ma'am, keep your poise, zero carping, and knock out that project and those last MBs (citizenships, I presume?).

      Best wishes.
      Last edited by desertrat77; 01-30-2014, 11:40 PM.


      • #5
        Not knowing your parents, on the surface It sounds to me that you getting your eagle is more important to them than to you (hey everbody!! lookit MY kid, he made eagle!) That said, perhaps not having a license will help you be better prepared to succeed with limited resources.


        • #6
          There probably is a middle ground. Make a plan listing what advancement related tasks you'd like to do when. A few of them might involve driving to visit a MB counselor or going to a project site. You may need a buddy or an adult with you. Ask your folks if they can be that buddy and ride with you on your learners permit to do scouting. Earn their trust. Demonstrate your skill. In a few months, they may relent. If they don't you'll have accumulate some precious hours with your folks that you will cherish years down the road.


          • #7
            From the little info given, there may be nothing you could tell them to change their minds on this point. Parents can be stubborn. Your biggest argument is going to be that Eagle is important to you to acheive, you've already started the ball rolling to that goal. You can point to that fact. Your license is also important to you, tell them that too. Just because you have a license doesn't mean that they need to let you drive, but I agree with qwase about the middle ground. See if they'll let you get your license when your project gets approved, it'll make it easier to run around and get the things done for your project. If your progress stalls, they can always revoke your driving privelages. Good luck!


            • #8
              They are worried you will be overomce by the fumes; exhaust fumes, perfumes, and the smell of money. Good luck.


              • #9
                So how long have you been a Life Scout? What do you need to complete before earning Eagle?


                • #10
                  Make a plan to get your Eagle. Yes, you have another year and a half (don't make your plan to earn it at the last minute, every plan needs some "scratch time" worked in. Chart out what Merit Badges you are going to earn and when. Chart out when you will begin the process of your Eagle Project, when the certification/verification will occur, and when the project will be complete. Chart out when you serve your position of responsibility. And include when you will have your board of review, and your court of honor.

                  Include in your plan as much specific "whos", "wheres" and "whens". Don't just say "April: Earn a Merit Badge". Say what merit badge, and who your councilor will be. (Don't plan bare minimums on the MB's, you may find that you can't complete some due lack of interest or scheduling problems with your councilor). Have your Scoutmaster/Eagle Adviser (better include their names on that schedule) review it to look for big flaws (like "Can't do a scoutmaster conference in July '15, we're going to Russia that month" kind of things).

                  If you haven't picked a project yet, then get on that schedule when you are going to research possible projects, and when you will have that project picked, and give guesses (based on estimates of how long other scout's projects have taken) on when you will propose, get accepted, and complete your project.

                  You will want to include in this plan other major things that are going on. Football Season? Major musical performance? Better know when those things will be, so you don't have them happening at the same time as when you need major things done.

                  Now, once you have your plan, add the steps for getting your drivers license. When will you take classroom training? Behind the wheel instruction? Written and BTW Tests? Practice time with your parents? slot those things in, with the goal of "achieving" the license at the same time as achieving the badge. Don't make your schedule to go against your parent's wishes (by scheduling the license app complete before the Eagle BOR). That's asking for an outright rejection.

                  Once you have a schedule, the big thing is to START FOLLOWING IT. Is your first step earning an Eagle-required MB you're missing? Then get it done when you said it will be done. A schedule is nice, but its just paper. Show your parents you can follow the schedule, and you will impress them.

                  If you've found that the schedule is hard, space stuff out. If you find that everything is light and easy, go ahead and tighten things up. Schedule "down time" (take Baseball season off from scouting, for example), to prevent burnout, if that doesn't change when your final goal will be.

                  And once you start following the schedule, and shown you have a plan for both the Eagle and the license, then you are in a position to negotiate. Got three MB's done sooner than planned? Maybe move behind-the-wheel training up a month so it doesn't coincide with soccer. Have a merit badge counselor who lives across the county? Plan to work that in with driving practice with your parent. Show your parents that having the license sooner will help you accomplish things on your path to Eagle, but give good, solid reasons. Saying "it will be easier to meet with X councilor" is not a reason, since you need a buddy when meeting a MB councilor, and your parents won't (shouldn't) let a youth drive with another youth alone. You will never be driving other scouts. But you may help with the driving on a family trip (got those on your schedule?).

                  And sometimes, the answer will still be "no". A scout is obedient. Deal with it, get Eagle done sooner if that's what it takes, (tighten that schedule down to the week), and go on with your life.


                  • #11
                    Plan it out. You've got most of the hurdles over with. Start on your project today. Don't wait until you have all the MBs done. Start on your project today. Don't wait until you've had your POR for Eagle finished. Start on your project today. Have you started your project yet?

                    At most you have ten more merit badges to do. Don't worry about them as much as your project, unless you don't have Family Life, Personal Management, Camping, Cooking or Physical Fitness done. Then start on those 5 (the ones you haven't done) while you are working on your project.

                    BTW, I'm a parent/ASM, not a Scout, but my son just finished his Eagle (9th grade and 15), and is having his ECOH on February 1. We (my wife and myself) didn't have the no Eagle no license rule, but we did encourage him to finish before age 16 for practical reasons (the older you get, the less time you seem to have). Besides the above badges, the rest are fairly simple and can be done in minimal time. Get to work. There is no easy way in life. If you're a Life Scout now, you've done most of the truly hard work. You can Eagle in 6 months if you try.

                    In your state, how long do you have to have a learner's permit before your license? Here in FL, you have to have your learner's permit for a full year (and drive 30 hrs during that year during the day, and 15 hrs at night). Ask them if you can get your permit if you say, write out the rough draft of your project.

                    Did I tell you to start work on your project?


                    • #12
                      I finished my Eagle last summer. I'm 16 and in the 11th Grade. The test to get my license to drive (without an adult in the car, solo driving) is February 5, six days from now. "No license till Eagle" didn't apply to me, I've had my learner's permit since March 2013.

                      The question you need to ask yourself is "Why do I want a Driver's License?" Is it because all your friends have one?
                      I've got a friend going to Philmont this June, and while I really want to go, I know that if I wait till next year I'll have a much better Scouting "resume" and more experience to back myself up for NAYLE.

                      The same goes for driving, the older you are, the better you'll pay attention, and the more mature you'll be (well, that's generally the case).

                      If you really want your license, start proving that your are responsible. Get up earlier than you have to, wash some dishes, do some laundry, help wash the cars, you could even cook dinner. Impress your parents by showing yourself to be an adult, and they'll give you the freedoms of an adult.

                      Like a few members said above, you need to make a plan for Eagle. Regardless of whether or not your Driver's License depends on it, and make that plan detailed.
                      Last edited by EagleScout441; 01-31-2014, 05:16 PM.


                      • #13
                        I had a boy in my last troop that was exactly in the same situation you describe. His dad was the former SM. The was a real brat, too. I told him to quit worrying about the car, the more you ignore it, the more your parents will think it is no longer leverage for the Eagle. He did take my advice and made sure that as he worked on scouting and his Eagle, he asked for a ton of rides to get here and there. Eventually they realized it was more inconvenient for them to have him not driving and he was showing good progress in Scouts and his Eagle that they gave in and he got his license a couple of months after he turned 16. By the way, he went on to Eagle, was the scout speaker at the Golden Eagle Banquet in the council and was SM trained and WB trained before going off to the US Air Force Reserves. Within a year of graduating basics, he was a flight crew chief.

                        Focus on what's really important, driving a car really isn't all that important. In the long run, you'll eventually realize that getting stuck with every errand your parents don't want to make gets old really fast.



                        • #14
                          Wow... I really feel your pain. I would never do that to my Scout...and one responder is right. This opens the door for your parents to push you any way they want, and parents will do exactly that, once they see it works...its an easy cop-out way of parenting.

                          Say you pick a college/career path they don't like ... will they withhold helping you pay for college if you don't change your college major or career idea? What will you do then? Are you willing to work at a job for the next 40 years that you actually hate, because that is what your parents wanted?

                          The reality is the Eagle isn't nearly the big deal that most parents (and lifetime Scouters) put on it. I'd never met one who admitted to it until my son got involved in Scouting. Although now that I've met a few, I am pretty good at spotting them in the crowd. It's really an unusable, unrecognized award that can just as easily go against you on a job interview or application as it can help you. (Read: Don't tell that LGBT manager about your Eagle badge, unless you don't want the job.)

                          Unfortunately, with Eagle-crazed parents, they are liable to go completely nutso if you dig your heels in. So you have to decide what is more important to you...your self-respect or pleasing your parents and keeping the peace, even though you may hate yourself in the end.

                          Incidentally, my son is 16 and I doubt if he'll even make Life....just like to camp a couple times a year.
                          Last edited by Engineer61; 01-31-2014, 05:50 PM.


                          • Sentinel947
                            Sentinel947 commented
                            Editing a comment
                            Just because your son doesn't plan to make Eagle doesn't make Eagle worthless. Just because your son doesn't intend to make Eagle doesn't make your sons time as a Scout worthless.

                            Are you a hiring manager? Have you listed Eagle as something on your resume? What's your qualification for saying it has no use and is unrecognized? What youth activities are useful and recognized if a teenager applies for a job? Please enlighten me.

                            Since graduating High School and earning Eagle three years ago being a Scout and earning Eagle has helped me in the two jobs I've held and being an Army Cadet.

                            Just because you think Scouting is a worthless waste of time doesn't make it a waste of time for everybody. Just for you.

                            Furthermore why are you counseling a young man to forget his goals because of your opinion? "Self respect or doing something he hates"? He clearly stated he wants to get Eagle and his license. He doesn't like his parents extra motivational tactics and feels they are unnecessary. "Eagle crazed parents" " go nutso". Way to judge the parenting of parents you've never met. That isn't cool.

                            What is unusable in this situation is your advice, because it's through your anti Scouting bias and doesn't apply to tonymessina22.
                            Last edited by Sentinel947; 01-31-2014, 07:10 PM.

                        • #15
                          "I'd never met one who admitted to it until my son got involved in Scouting."

                          Engineer, it's called humility.