Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by Payla, Aug 24, 2012.
Thank you . Happy holidays to you and your family.
Thank you dear Happy Holidays to you and yours as well.
Do keep posting, it is really a blessing to be here and learn from one another.
I am new to this site and I want to thank you for creating this incredible support group. My son is 35 and I WAS an enabler until last night when I Googled "Adult son homeless what to do" and your site/forum appeared. Reading all the stories mirrored my life to a tee--frightening and healing at the same time. I'll share details and progress later, just want to thank you from the bottom of my heart.
Payla, I can so relate to your post. I, too, am struggling in my life, my soul, with a grown difficult child. It is both heartbreaking and disturbing to see a man, who has so much potential destroy his life, and as a result, allow him to take all the peace I deserve in mine. He in not in my house, physically, at the moment but I have no peace wondering what's next? I am allowing his dysfunctional life to impact me to the point of feeling scared for my mental health.
This board has helped me and I need to stay connected. Let's reach for all the support out there, especially here where so many others offer their support from their own personal experiences. Prayers and hugs dear friend.
Welcome, StrongerThanEver and Memedixie. Both of you will find more support if you create a thread or post of your own. This one is very old.
To do that, go back to the Parent Emeritus forum page. On the top right is a blue button that says, "post new thread." Click on it and it will allow you to write your own story, so that other members may comment.
Same boat with my 32 y/o son, whom I have just had to "tough love" and make the decision to NOT le t him stay with me. (Read my post...Finding Out). So sad to watch when they have so much potential, but have lied and manipulated for me to keep him together, when I am struggling to keep myself together! I will pray for you, as I hope you will pray for me. Gail
Hi I'm glad I found this forum. I am going through similar problems with my 32 yr old son. It is heart breaking. When you know that inside there is a beautiful person who just needs to grow up. Your stories sound similar
Hi Joy, and welcome. I am sorry for your troubles and aching heart for your son. You have replied to a very old thread. You will get more response if you post a new thread.
My eldest is 38 and still trying to find her potential. I cannot have her in my home due to her lifestyle and choices. It is hard, but, hopefully one day, she will see a different path and walk it.
I hope you post. It helps to sort through this reality we never expected raising our beloveds.
Hugs to you.
I'm going through the exact same place you are.It hard,but I know it's for the best.
I am new to this site so please let me know if I should be writing this somewhere else. We have a very similar situation. My step-son is 31 years old, and is asking to move in with us until he gets things worked out. Truth is he is being evicted by what was once a friend who he now owes several thousand dollars in back rent. When he was 18 he moved out to live with friends. During that year he got arrested for breaking into cars. We reluctantly bailed him out of jail, paid all of his court costs with the agreement he would pay us back. Never happened. A few months later he used the soft touch on his mom to move in with us because he lost his job. I told him it would be ok if he helped around the house, and make a daily effort to find a new job. Never helped, and lied about job search. So I asked him to leave. At 21 he is back asking to move in again. Things will be different this time. We fell for it figuring a little older, more mature. Wrong! We left him one simple job to do so we could go on vacation. Told him to show us he has grown up. When we returned home the one simple job was not done, and my liquor cabinet was empty. Once again he was told to get out. Now 10 years have passed. He has had 2 cars repossessed, been evicted at least 2 times, fathered a child with a girl that also threw him out. He is not working. Doesn’t have a car. Lies about drinking. Tells you he is trying by seeing a counselor. Happened only once when we took him. So now he is hitting up all the relatives for a place to stay. He tried in December, and everyone said no. Now 3 months later he is asking again this time because his friend gave him 4 days to get out. Too embarrassed, or for fear of hearing rejection he emailed everyone. Promising not to drink, he will find work, he will go to counseling. Desperate times! My wife is teetering with the guilt of abandoning her little boy, but my answer to that is he is not a little boy. It’s time to take charge of his own life, and check himself in to a rehab. What do you think we should do?
Note-4u, welcome. You have responded to an old thread. It would be more beneficial for you if you copied your post here and started your own thread in Parent Emeritus.
I'm sorry you are going thru this with your step son. Many of us struggle with adult troubled kids who for whatever reason don't launch into adulthood. Most of us have come to the conclusion, after years of enabling, that "nothing changes if nothing changes".....your step son has not changed in the last 13 years, so YOU and your wife need to change. Our troubled kids usually do not take the initiative to do anything different until WE set strong boundaries and insist they take responsibility for their actions. Why should they change? They have all the benefits and advantages of others taking care of them and being responsible for them, it's quite the cushy deal. My advice to you is to supply your step son with a list of local shelters. Remember the adage, "doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results is the definition of insanity." You already know how this will turn out.
You may want to read the article on detachment at the bottom of my post here. You may find information and guidance in the book, Codependent no more by Melodie Beattie. Many of us find a therapist to learn how to set boundaries, stop enabling, learn how to detach and allow our kids to suffer the consequences of their actions and ultimately how to accept what we can't change. If there is substance abuse, you may find comfort and support in 12 step groups such as Families anonymous, Al Alan or Narc Anon.
It's helpful for us to NOT see our adult kids as "abandoned little boys".......that will increase guilt and remove any resolve to change.......your step son is a grown adult man, at 31 it is time to "man up" and be accountable for his actions.
I think it's time for your step son to take care of his own life.
First, click on link at top of sharings that says something like "New Members - to start a new thread." You'll get more responses.
Your story sounds like many of ours: empty promises to change, enabling, heart break, burning bridges.
I have a 32 year old son due to get out of jail, who has a child, and who blames everyone else for his circumstances. Doesn't call me Mom anymore because any boundary I set makes me mean. Every time I think from his point of view, I cave. Every time I think of how I deserve to be treated, I get stronger.
My advice is to take care of yourself, of your marriage, your physical and emotional health. You're right that he is not a little boy. He is an adult whether he acts like one or not.He must find his own way. Nothing you have done has probably helped him do that, no matter how much you love him. All the empathy you give has not been returned.
If you read any of our stories you know this is common behavior in our adult kids who won't thrive and expect to be taken care of forever. Most have issues with substance abuse. The conventional wisdom is that a 31 year old needs to live on his own and work and that second and third chances don't do any good. They don't make good their promises as you know. Why on Earth would he change now? He hasn't. And he knows he can manipulate his mother.
Words are cheap and easy and meaningless. Only actions matter. Has your son shown signs yet of being different or is this just talk?
My opinion is he is too old to live at home with you. He is not anyone's little boy at his age. Don't think of him as one. It hurts us to do that. It hurts them too. If he is able bodied there is no reason he can't get a job.
Many of us have had to see our adults homeless...it can motivate them though. My daughter quit drugs almost right away and got productive and still is 14 years later. She was 19 when we had to make her leave for drug use and now she is 34 and thriving. It broke my heart to do this but she wouldn't get help and we had two littles who were afraid of her.
There are shelters and plenty of food pantries and soup kitchens. It is hard to do this....bringing him home may be even worse. It sounds like he has worn out his welcome with the other relatives so he must have a history.
.Others will come along with their own experiences. I am sorry you had to come here but glad you found us. Maybe your wife wants to read some of these stories. Do you have other kids?
This is at the end of a long old thread. You will get a bigger response if you make your story a new thread. Good luck!
Your story is like a dejavu. Very upsetting and I know how much you must hurt.
Good afternoon. I’m new to this board however not new to the situation. I have a 39 year son that has had substance abuse since he was 16. His grandmother and his father have enabled him but now the grandmother is in assisted living and my X has ran out of resources. I too have helped with legal fees etc the past 10 years so I can’t place blame. My son literally squatted in my other sons house for a year. My son finally got him out, now my oldest son is living in his truck. I can’t sleep or go to work I’m a mess! I did end up getting him a room tonight but can’t afford anymore. Is it morally right to leave them on the street? We think he has mental issues now due to too much drugs. Is there a state funded mental health to get him the help that he needs. Then a least I know I tried. Please advise, I don’t know what I should do!
Ms Helen, you've responded to an old thread which may not be seen by the other members. Please start your own thread which will offer you more responses.
You might get some solace from reading the article on detachment at the bottom of my post here.
If you feel your son has mental health issues, give NAMI, the National Alliance on Mental illness, a call. They have excellent courses for parents which can help with support, guidance, resources and general information. Here is information on NAMI:
CALL THE NAMI HELPLINE
M-F, 10 AM - 6 PM ET
FIND HELP IN A CRISIS OR TEXT "NAMI" TO 741741
Many parents find support and guidance in 12 step groups, Al Anon, Families Anonymous, CoDa and Narc Anon. Try finding a group which can help you. You may have to check out a few before you find one that fits for you.
You can try Delancey Street Org. which provides housing and jobs for substance abusers and those who are on probation.
Here is their website:
Delancey Street Foundation - Home
A good resource book is Codependent no more by Melodie Beattie.
I am not aware of any state funded mental health organizations which can provide your son the help he requires, but you can post a thread on the Substance Abuse Forum, those folks are well versed in substance abuse issues.
Most of us come to the conclusion, after many years of enabling our adult troubled kids, that there is not much we have control over once our kids are over 18. We have to begin our own journey of learning how to let go of what we cannot control......it's not an easy path, but as you can see, you'll stay spinning around in a hamster wheel and go down the rabbit hole with your son every time.....he is the only one who can help himself.
Ms Helen, I'm sorry you're struggling with your son's addiction. If it feels right to you, start your own thread, post on the Substance Abuse forum as well as Parent Emeritus...... and find support for YOU. Many of us choose to begin our own therapy or counseling to learn tools to help us detach from our adult children's behaviors and choices, as well as to offer us support and guidance. Finding a 12 step group or some group or counseling for YOU will make a world of difference. Your son may continue to make poor choices which put him in harms way, however, with support you can learn to respond differently and accept what you have no control over....it's a tough path,.... but it is doable.....it generally requires a supportive environment for us to change the way we parent our adult troubled kids.
Ms Helen, you're not alone. I'm glad you found us. Keep posting, it helps.
Separate names with a comma.