Evicting an Adult Child

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by Exhaustedat22, Mar 24, 2019.

  1. Exhaustedat22

    Exhaustedat22 New Member

    Hello, I'm brand new to this site. I'm exhausted, emotionally drained and just tired. My son, who will be 22 in a few weeks has me at the end. I just can't continue to live like this. On December 25th I served him with a Notice to Quit. this gave him 30 days to leave, well of course he didn't and of course I didn't enforce it. It was the dead of winter, I know he has no where to go, so I waited, as always hoping he would change, and as usual, he didn't change. He doesn't work, at least leaglly. i have no idea what kind of covert activites he's up to. I live on edge, on high alert, have security alarms so that I know when he's coming and going. However that doesn't stop him from stealing from me. He gooes through everything I own. He's stolen and sold a garage full of tools (his dead father, my husband), his father's wedding ring, my grandmothers jewerly, the list is so long, I'm exhausted just trying to list of the things he has taken from me. Not sure what event happened two weeks ago that triggered me to take the next step. I went to City Hall and filed formal paper work to get hm evicted. Court is scheduled for Wednesday morning. I wa sick about doing this, thinking "Geez, what kind of parent are you"? then I'm getting dressed and look for my belt, and it's gone! Really my belt? then look further and my cordless drill set is missing. My employer replaced the one he already stole months ago. That's it! I don't care that he has no place to go, I don't care that it's cold outside, I don't care if he's hungry (that's what I'm trying to convince myself). Please send me words of encourgment or similar stories.
  2. Exhaustedat22

    Exhaustedat22 New Member

    As I wait for Wednesday to get here, I'm now worried that the judge won't sign an eviction order, stating something like you have enabled him this far and he has nowhere to go (that is IF he shows up for court). I wonder if he'll want to ride with me? He has no car anymore (the 2nd one I bought, let some small time drug dealer use it, sold it, then told me it was stolen 3 times and I went and recovered it 3 times. Finally wised up and let it go last week, said he sold and gave me $50). How can I be so ingorant, gulliable and just down right stupid? Because every once in while, I see the boy I use to know. Everytime I do, I hope "ok, he's turning the corner, things will get better now". Never happens.
  3. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    Hi exhausted. I am not an attorney nor have I gone to court for an eviction. However, my common sense tells me that in a legal proceeding the judge has to follow the law. The law does not take into account enabling. Landlords all over the world can bend over backwards to be kind or tolerant to tenants, but then it is a step too far. It sounds like you are judging yourself. This is not helpful and not fair. You cannot be guilty of two opposite things at once: trying too hard, and deciding no longer to try so hard.

    This is very typical of what we do as mothers, in the situations we find ourselves. Blame ourselves for all sides. This is unkind. This is the first step. To be kind to yourself and to seek kindness from others.
    Your son is victimizing you at every turn. You are unsafe in your home. Transgressing against your property and your boundaries and your personal space are all serious. He does not have to hit you or swear or insult you. There are all kinds of ways to be unsafe. He considers all that is yours to be his, to do what he chooses, without consequences. These thefts are all violations of the law. Since this is repetitive, have you considered calling the police and filing police reports? If somebody is victimizing you criminally, there are different rules for eviction, as far as I know. I think it may be 3 days.

    I do not think your son is undeserving of due process, as a tenant would be under normal circumstances. But I believe there would have to be a paper trail. That is why the police reports are essential.

    I have called the police on my son many times. He has never been arrested. I have filed letters of trespass and I have had my son removed from my property a number of times. It is not as emotionally difficult as I would think, because I have been traumatized by how long this has gone on, and the costs to me...and to him.

    Anyway. Welcome. And good luck.

    PS I hope you do not take him to court.
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2019
  4. RN0441

    RN0441 100% better than I was but not at 100% yet


    Welcome and I'm so sorry that you have to be here.

    From what I'm reading and from my own experience, your son has a serious drug problem.

    I suggest you read the "substance abuse" forum here where you will read many, many stories like yours - including my own.

    More will be along to offer you wisdom and support.

    You ARE DOING THE RIGHT THING by evicting him. You have been his victim for long enough and it's actually enabling his disease of addiction to continue by providing him with food and shelter.

    For them to change they have to get REAL UNCOMFORTABLE or they do NOT change.

    In the meantime, I suggest some type of support for yourself. I went to a private therapist that specialized in addiction. She helped me to form firm but loving boundaries.

    He wasn't going to change so I had to change.
    • Winner Winner x 3
    • Agree Agree x 1
    • List
  5. Tanya M

    Tanya M Living with an attitude of gratitude Staff Member

    Hi Exhausted. I'm so sorry for what you have been dealing with. I'm really glad you found us here.
    I think you are doing the right thing. You have tried to help your son but he doesn't want "help" he just wants to be enabled. He wants to continue to live his life the way he chooses but within the confines of your home.
    Do not feel bad about him leaving your home. You are not kicking him out, you are liberating him so that he can live his life on his terms.
    I doubt that a judge would say this. I'm pretty sure most judges get sick and tired of seeing parents having to deal with difficult adult children.
    So you did some enabling, so did I. I enabled to the point that I bought a house for my son to live in.
    We all have done what we thought was "helping" when in reality we were enabling.
    There are no easy answers for any of us as we traverse this crazy journey with our difficult adult children.

    Bottom line, you need to do what you have to in order for you to feel safe in your own home. Our homes should be our sanctuary.

    Glad you posted! Please let us know how things are going. We care.

  6. Momma

    Momma New Member

    I am being pressured by my family to buy my son and his family a home. I haven't done it but think about it. My biggest fear is that I am just purchasing a big coffin that they will be free to do drugs and die in, that he will have his drug buddies sleeping on the floor in exchange for drugs. Can you provide feedback on your experience?
  7. Crayola13

    Crayola13 Active Member

    In my city, the DA is seizing drug house property all over the place, even if the owner doesn't know what is going on inside the house. Sometimes the owner can't get their house back. Our laws are such, and I've read this is happening in other cities. I don't know how the DA has the right to take a home owner's property and auction it off to the state. The same is happening to clubs where there is drug use. Could you afford to lose a house?
    • Agree Agree x 2
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
    • List
  8. Tanya M

    Tanya M Living with an attitude of gratitude Staff Member

    To sum it up, it was a big mistake.
    At the time, my son had been in prison for 2 years. When he was released I flew to the state he was in and flew him back to our state. I knew there was no way he could live with us (too much stealing in the past to trust him) so we decided to buy a little house. The idea was that our son could live there rent free while looking for a job. Once he got a job then he could start paying us some rent. Our intention was for him to get his life back on track and be steady. If he could do this for several years, we were prepared to gift him the house. Well that didn't happen. What did happen was he met a girl and she got pregnant. Okay, so you both can live in the house. Now mind you, this house was a foreclosure so it needed some updating. My husband and I are both very handy and did the work ourselves but because we both had jobs, our time was limited. The house was quite functional but not good enough for my son. He did nothing but complain about living in a "work zone". Seriously, it was not that bad. Before he even moved in we had already put in new carpeting and painted. We were working on the kitchen but we always made sure everything was cleaned up before we left. During this time we also were not charging any rent. One day my son announces that they are moving - he just can't live in a work zone. (He also was never willing to help do any of the work)
    So they moved into a little apt. My son had a good job working in a warehouse - they started him at $12.00 an hour. He only lasted about 4 months. When I asked him why he quit he told me "because the owner is an idiot and doesn't know the first thing about running a business" Yes, he said this about a man who has the same business for over 30 years.
    My son and his wife moved around quite a bit. We helped them and her parents helped them. We did this because of our grand child. Fast forward, my daughter in law is pregnant again, I now have 2 grand children. When my grandson was a month old, my daughter in law discovered that my son had been lying the whole time they were together. He had not only been using drugs but was also seeking out women on the internet to hook up with.
    The marriage ended and my son abandoned his kids.
    So, what did we do with the house? We became landlords. We did this for 13 years and just last year decided to sell it.
    If I could go back and do it all over again, I never would have bought the house. I never would have gone to get him. Even before all of this happened my husband and I paid rent for him, I have purchased at least 3 sets of kitchen ware for him plus all the times he "needed" money and we caved and gave it to him.
    We went above and beyond to try and help our son but all we really were doing was enabling him.
    My son is now 37 and still has no desire to live what I consider a conventional life. Just a few months back he finished up parole after being in prison again. He reached out to my husband just a couple of days ago wanting money. My husband told him no.
    My point of this rambling is to say that what we think is "helping" is nothing more than enabling. When we enable we actually are hurting them as we are not allowing them to deal with the natural consequences of their choices. Yes, it's not easy to watch them struggle but it's through the struggle that they will grow, but only if they choose to.
    I have come to accept that my son will continue to live a homeless, wandering lifestyle. I don't like it but it's his life to live. I have my own life to live.

    Another problem when we continue to enable, we put our own retirement at risk. Who wants to be in their 80's with a 60 something adult child still sponging off of them. My husband and I spent tens of thousands of dollars trying to "help" our son. Oh how I wish that money was in my retirement fund.
    I have worked to hard for too many years to allow my son to continue to sponge off of me. He is my only child and has been written out of my will. My grandchildren, the children he abandoned will inherit what I have. I am blessed to have a good relationship with them and their mother.

    Here is where you need to have some very firm and strong boundaries. My suggestion is this, when your family pressures you, kindly tell them "I appreciate your concerns and suggestions and will give it some thought" This way you are acknowledging them but also not giving in to them. If they continue, tell them that you have decided not to purchase a home for them and is not up for discussion. If they continue to pressure I would then tell them that if they feel so strongly about it that they can purchase the home.

    I've had pressure from family and friends. Again, you need strong boundaries. Don't let anyone push you around. They have not lived in your shoes. You have a right to have peace not only in your life but your home. You also do not owe anyone an explanation as to what you choose to do.
    • Winner Winner x 4
    • Agree Agree x 1
    • List
  9. BloodiedButUnbowed

    BloodiedButUnbowed Active Member

    I am sorry to hear of your situation. Ours is very different but I do wonder if there will come a day when one or both of my troubled stepsons will expect us to maintain them as your son expects to be maintained. If it happens I hope my W and I will be on the same page as to how to proceed.

    I believe in providing a helping hand, but when it comes to adults, it's too easy for what we intend as a temporary stopgap emergency measure - to intervene with love and support during a trying and difficult time in their lives - to become status quo. Our adult children know how to manipulate and exploit our weak spots where they're concerned, as well, making it even harder.

    Nothing can soothe your aching mother's heart, because this is a horrible situation that every parent dreads, and it has no easy solutions. But from a legal perspective, I believe you would simply have to follow your state's eviction procedures.

    The hard part, if he refuses to leave, is what to do next. Some parents have moved themselves. I know of a parent in just that situation at the moment.

    Keep posting, we're here for you.
  10. Tired out

    Tired out Active Member

    I hope you kick him to the curb. My son pulled a lot of the same things as yours. stole from us, went through our things. no remorse. His dad called him out, he swore at his dad and walked out said he wasn't coming back. He came back the next day (actually tried to call me all night but I had turned my phone off) when he came back we had already packed his stuff and had it all boxed up. Told him NO he could not be here. That was almost a year ago now. He lived at a 'friends" house for a few weeks then he and his girlfriend got an apartment. I hear from him when he needs something. Now that I have refused any further monetary help (he can work, he has had good $$ jobs that he messes up) I may not hear from him. His rent is coming due and he may be short due to another job change, that's his problem not mine. He will have to work it out. eviction? late fee? who knows. Not my circus, not my monkeys.

    So from me.. kick him out. take your life and your house back. Period. the first few months will be hard on you. come here. type, talk, let it out. I hope you have real life friend that understand and support you too.
    • Agree Agree x 2
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
    • List
  11. New Leaf

    New Leaf Well-Known Member

    Hi Exhausted, sorry for your need to be here, you have come to a good place where folks understand your frustrations. So many people here have gone through much of what you are experiencing. Me too. Stuff missing. Lots of stuff. I began to think I was losing my marbles. Of course, “no one took it”.
    It hurts and it is entirely mind boggling and extremely stressful. Not good for our health. Fortunately, I didn’t have to go through an eviction process, but I would do it if I had to. It’s no way to live, having to put up security cameras to defend your property from your own adult kid, who you graciously allow to live in your home. What the heck? How do they stoop so low and live with themselves?
    I am sorry for the loss of your husband, and your son going to the level of stealing his father’s tools. There are definitely no boundaries in his mind, that’s impossible to live with.
    Before my hubs passed, we had a revolving door with my two, whenever they were around we took to locking our wallets in our cars and sleeping with the keys. As I type that, I can’t believe we put up with that, but we did. It was my son who at 13 asked the obvious,“Why do we allow people to live here who we can’t trust?” It woke me up, got me thinking. Something had to change. They weren’t going to suddenly respect or appreciate living at home. Out they went. I vowed never again to house them.
    It hasn’t been easy, I don’t believe in rock bottom anymore, they have been out there for a few years now. One would think that living life in a park would get tiresome, that they would seek a better way. One thing I do know, in my home, we were all on a downward slide along with them. The chaos and drama overtook the very air.
    It’s been a long road and my two are still out there, drugging and living in a park. Well, one is locked up, supposedly my fault because I won’t allow her to live here. Balderdash.
    I have come to realize that I cannot fix them, they are destructive to the peace and sanctity of my home. They are capable adults who would rather do drugs and be houseless, than live a conventional life. Yet, they wouldn’t bat an eyelash at the chance to live in my home, lounge about all day while I go to work and pay the bills, steal whatever they could and pawn it for drugs, invite street friends over to party while I work.
    Just no.
    You have value and worth. Your home is your sanctuary. Your son is taking advantage of you every which way. You are not a bad parent putting your foot down and allowing him to spread his wings and helping him understand the consequences of his choices. That’s called life.
    I deal with two adult kids off the rails with the help of God. I pray for them to wake up and realize their potential. Their drug use and the consequences are much more than I can handle. I know that I cannot rescue them, that having them in my home does not help them, it only makes it easier for them to continue using, using drugs and me.
    Please know that you are not alone. Keep posting, it helps, a sort of journal that answers back. We are not experts, just parents like you who have battled this, all on the same journey at different stages along the path. Take what advice works, leave the rest. Keep working on yourself, strengthen yourself, build your toolbox. Honor your feelings. Rest when you need to, cry when you feel down, then pick yourself up again.
    You’ve got this, there’s a whole bunch of us standing beside you knowing how hard it is.
  12. Beta

    Beta Active Member

    What you said about how enabling our child affects us personally, not just emotionally, but also financially, really resonates with me. My husband and I have "helped" our son, J, all his life but especially the last six to seven years since he finished college. I'm sure we've spent a minimum of $10,000 or more on him. I would give anything to have that money right now to put into our retirement. He has beaten us down emotionally and financially these last years. My husband said just last night, as the topic of conversation turned again to J, "Look what he's done to us. I'm done. I'm not going to let him put him in the nursing home."
  13. Tanya M

    Tanya M Living with an attitude of gratitude Staff Member

    Beta, if money alone, or love alone, or the combination of love and money could save our difficult adult children then there would be no need for this site. We each have to come to our point of "enough".
    When I finally reached my "enough" point it was hard. My son really tried to guilt me into continuing the enabling. "If you really loved me you would help me" "I mean nothing to you" "you're and evil B****" "I wish you were dead", and many other really special sentiments.
    I have accepted that I will never have the kind of relationship most mothers have with their sons and I'm okay with it. I certainly don't like how things have gone but I cannot hold onto an empty dream.
    I'm 56 and not getting any younger. My husband and I have dreams of retirement that we are hoping to meet in about 5 years. WE have worked hard for what we have and will never allow our son to ruin it.
    I like you have given enough. Now it's our time to live for ourselves.
    • Agree Agree x 1
    • Winner Winner x 1
    • List
  14. Pixie Dusted

    Pixie Dusted New Member

    I've always gone with the idea that if I give my children money, even if they say they are borrowing or going to pay it back..... I do so freely and with no expectations attached. I don't want to build up resentments.

    If they pay us back that's wonderful! If they don't then every birthday and Xmas gift they get is like $100 forgiven from what they owe! JK

    With my adult children, I've done all I could since they were born and I know that they know how much I love them!

    But I wont enable! I have a daughter who is an addict and has called us names, treated us terribly, etc. But I refused to give her one penny towards her addiction!
    It's called tough love because it hurts!

    She's in treatment now and has apologized and said she's so grateful that we didn't enable her, etc.

    I pray she stays clean, and I use every second of her sobriety to again pound in her little head, how dearly and much we love her! In the hopes that if she falls off the wagon, she will remember those words.


    You did what you felt you needed to do for him. You should feel good about that, not resentful. You absolutely should take care of yourselves and not go on a nursing home! You've earned it. Regardless of what he did with the money, or how awful he has treated you. You did what you thought you should do to help.

    We are responsible for the input, not the outcome.
  15. Pixie Dusted

    Pixie Dusted New Member


    I think most mothers have gone through this at some point, I sure have!

    If my kids ever yelled at me or called me names, I would scream right back at them "OH YEAH? WELL I STILL LOVE YOU ANYWAY!" It didn't take the sting away from their words, but it helped me feel a little better.

    I remember the first time my oldest daughter called me a B*TCH. I turned around and went right up to her and said "You say that like it is a bad thing....". Then I walked away.

    She broke out laughing and honestly when I am called that it is a very nice compliment in my opinion.

    But when things get tough for some reason I often break down with humor or something funny. I don't know what else to do!

    Ok, time for this insomniac to try and sleep.
  16. Tanya M

    Tanya M Living with an attitude of gratitude Staff Member

    Yes, I agree, most parents have dealt with this. I was used to it when my son was still living at home as I attributed it to "being a teen".
    What I have absolutely zero tolerance for is when I received these ugly remarks on the heals of telling him no, I would not give him any more money. I will not put up with that kind of disrespect.