I’m new and lost.

Mitch2454

New Member
Hi everyone, I found this group after googling about throwing my son out of the house. I’m at a loss. I have a 19 yr old son, for the past year he has been through countless jobs, lies about everything, drinks, smokes marijuana and is just plain lazy. We gave him an ultimatum that he had to work a 40 per week job and help contribute to the household if he was to continue living with us a couple of months ago.
He came home one night after being fired from his latest job and said he was joining the Navy. We were happy for him. He went through the process, kept a little PT job until his ship out date which was this past Monday. We just kept putting up with his crap because we knew he was leaving and the Navy might be a good thing for him. We dropped him off on Monday, told him how proud we were, family came to see him and then I get a text yesterday that he was on his way back home. He backed out and told them he never wanted to join and that he had an ongoing medical problem. He lied about the medical problem. He doesn’t have one. He tried to lie to us about why he didn’t go but his recruiter called us upset and told us everything.
At this point, I’m done. My son hasn’t apologized for what he has done, nothing.

My husband wants to throw him out and i don’t disagree. We gave him until this Friday at 5pm to be out. At this moment, he is laying on the couch in the basement, watching TV. Doing nothing. My son has no car, he trashed that until it no longer runs, he has no job, no money and supposedly all of his friends said he cannot stay with them.
I feel like a horrible mother putting him out in these circumstances but I also know if he stays he will think we don’t mean business.
Im sorry this is so long, I needed a safe space to vent. I don’t know what to do.
 
Last edited:

JMom

Well-Known Member
Hi Mitch,
Your son sounds a lot like mine at 18-19. You are doing great with giving him a move out date. He has to be responsible and accountable, otherwise you take on all the consequences for his couch potato behavior. Welcome to this site, you will be amazed how quickly others come along with support, love and kindness. I too googled "I bought my kid a tent today, who does that?". I found this site. That was 7 years ago. You can follow my story if you like by going to my profile. I wish I had found this site BEFORE my son went hard core off the edge with drugs and homelessness, BUT I learned to take control of my life, take care of myself and let my kid control his life and take on the consequences.

It is good that your son's friends are not helping him. This will force him to work if he wants to eat and have a car. If he grows during this time, it is his choice. If he doesn't get his act together it is his choice. You are NOT a horrible mother. I had enough with my kid and bought him a tent, sleeping bag, some food, toiletries and dropped him off in the woods. This was AFTER paying for several rehabs, tickets, jail bail outs, dragging him to school and the like. I asked who does that?; and someone in this group very graciously replied "You did what a mother does, you offered food, shelter, clothing and let him go".

It was the right thing to do, for us. My son is now 25 (sorta kinda) sober, working the same job for 4 years and has his own place. He is not completely sober (still smokes weed) but his drug usage is in HIS house on HIS terms and bought with HIS money and my family is safe and my things are not being stolen, I think you can save yourself more guilt feelings down the road and avoid any enabling that might follow.

I agree with you that your no should mean no, otherwise you are in for a long journey of "no, but, maybe this one time". I know the Navy thing is very disappointing but it probably would have happened anyway and ended with is dishonorable discharge.

I would like to recommend the book Codependent No More by Melody Beattie and perhaps counseling or meditation. Get ready to feel supported.. this group is FANTASTIC!

Hugs,
JMOM
 

Mitch2454

New Member
Hi Mitch,
Your son sounds a lot like mine at 18-19. You are doing great with giving him a move out date. He has to be responsible and accountable, otherwise you take on all the consequences for his couch potato behavior. Welcome to this site, you will be amazed how quickly others come along with support, love and kindness. I too googled "I bought my kid a tent today, who does that?". I found this site. That was 7 years ago. You can follow my story if you like by going to my profile. I wish I had found this site BEFORE my son went hard core off the edge with drugs and homelessness, BUT I learned to take control of my life, take care of myself and let my kid control his life and take on the consequences.

It is good that your son's friends are not helping him. This will force him to work if he wants to eat and have a car. If he grows during this time, it is his choice. If he doesn't get his act together it is his choice. You are NOT a horrible mother. I had enough with my kid and bought him a tent, sleeping bag, some food, toiletries and dropped him off in the woods. This was AFTER paying for several rehabs, tickets, jail bail outs, dragging him to school and the like. I asked who does that?; and someone in this group very graciously replied "You did what a mother does, you offered food, shelter, clothing and let him go".

It was the right thing to do, for us. My son is now 25 (sorta kinda) sober, working the same job for 4 years and has his own place. He is not completely sober (still smokes weed) but his drug usage is in HIS house on HIS terms and bought with HIS money and my family is safe and my things are not being stolen, I think you can save yourself more guilt feelings down the road and avoid any enabling that might follow.

I agree with you that your no should mean no, otherwise you are in for a long journey of "no, but, maybe this one time". I know the Navy thing is very disappointing but it probably would have happened anyway and ended with is dishonorable discharge.

I would like to recommend the book Codependent No More by Melody Beattie and perhaps counseling or meditation. Get ready to feel supported.. this group is FANTASTIC!

Hugs,
JMOM
Thank you so much. I feel so alone right now. I know I’m doing the best thing i can do for him but gosh it’s hard.
 

JayPee

Sending good vibes...
Mitch,
Welcome to this site. Stay with us and read other posts. There is so much wisdom to be gained here. We all come here broken and hurting. We feel like no one can understand what we're going through but the people here can. Just knowing others have survived and are surviving these difficulties relieves a little of the burden. When you don't feel alone in a problem and it is brought out in the open, I feel personally, that's the beginning of healing.

My youngest son who is 27 joined the Marine Corp. , graduated boot camp and then wanted out. He got out on a "medical" discharge too. Since then, which was 9 yrs. ago now, he has occasionally had a job, and for the last three years since our family broke up after divorce, he has lived in his car. In the beginning, as a "professional enabler" which comes from living with an addict, I supported him financially to the tune of thousands and thousands of dollars. Cars, gas, food, hotels. You name it.

There is no easy way out of this but the most important thing is for you to find the support you need to find healing for yourself. If you are broken you will not be strong enough to stand up to the begging, pleading and unkept promises that will happen over and over again. We become like a human emotional punching bags. After a while that gets old.

You've got to want a better life for yourself as much as you want that for your son. It feels selfish at first because as Moms we always put our children first. But there comes a time that we have to push through that feeling and take care of ourselves. You are doing no one any good by getting sick with anxiety and worry. I'm not saying I'm "healed" but I'm better and by the grace of God I know there's a better way for me as well as my son.

Someone on here put it nicely one time to me and they said "you can't care you son into changing". Those real long lasting changes will have to come from him.

Keep with us and hang in there.
 

Mitch2454

New Member
You are all right. I told him through text if he didn’t figure something out i would drop him off at the homeless center of his choosing if he needed it. He didn’t respond but I hope this makes him realize I am not backing down.
 

Helpless29

Active Member
You are not alone. This site has gotten me through my toughest times.I was just like you googling to find answers. My son is 17 teen & currently in Juvenile Detention , I don’t know what to do ,bring him home or let him stay there till he’s sent to a group home.He’s been to many behavioral centers & got kicked out or ran away. He is begging me to come out & I’m faced with such a hard decision & the guilt if I say no is killing me. I feel for you & I know the guilt and hurt you feel. There are many people on here who give such great advice. We are all here for you. I wish I could give you good advice but I am here still struggling, but just know you are not ALONE. Keep posting and vent , it will help you.
 

Mitch2454

New Member
I had a rough night last night. Right now, I am doubling down on work to keep my mind busy. The deadline for tomorrow is getting closer and he appears to be doing nothing other than lay around the house or watch his younger brother play video games. I am majorly struggling with the thought of having to drop him off at the homeless shelter tomorrow with no food, money, car or a job. I feel like I failed him even though I shouldn't. My husband, his father is not as emotional as I am but its definitely bothering him. He is more stronger than I am though and knows this is the best decision for Blake.
 

JayPee

Sending good vibes...
I'm sorry you had a rough night. I still have difficulties myself. Setting and keeping boundaries are healthy but also are a very, very difficult thing to do. I found the quote that "New Leaf" posted one time that I refer to often.

"We have no control over another's choices and we can't "over-care" our loved ones into action. In other words, we can't care about their situations more than they do. That just continues to shift the consequences from them to us."

A lot of our suffering is our angst, anxiety, hurt and pain over wishing things were the way we wanted them to be. Sometimes, the plans for our loved ones don't even remotely resemble what we have envisioned for them and us. But if you have faith, trust and believe that maybe this difficult, troubled road they have to travel is exactly what they need in order to come through this journey of life on the "right side" of things.

We want things to turn around quickly because we want to experience peace, happiness and joy with our children but we need to realize the time it may take our children to get to a better place could be a whole life-time. In the meantime, we can't put our lives on hold, holding our breath until they are better. That's not fair to us. Learn to grow through this difficult experience. Make it worthwhile so that lives are not being wasted.
 

Mitch2454

New Member
I'm sorry you had a rough night. I still have difficulties myself. Setting and keeping boundaries are healthy but also are a very, very difficult thing to do. I found the quote that "New Leaf" posted one time that I refer to often.

"We have no control over another's choices and we can't "over-care" our loved ones into action. In other words, we can't care about their situations more than they do. That just continues to shift the consequences from them to us."

A lot of our suffering is our angst, anxiety, hurt and pain over wishing things were the way we wanted them to be. Sometimes, the plans for our loved ones don't even remotely resemble what we have envisioned for them and us. But if you have faith, trust and believe that maybe this difficult, troubled road they have to travel is exactly what they need in order to come through this journey of life on the "right side" of things.

We want things to turn around quickly because we want to experience peace, happiness and joy with our children but we need to realize the time it may take our children to get to a better place could be a whole life-time. In the meantime, we can't put our lives on hold, holding our breath until they are better. That's not fair to us. Learn to grow through this difficult experience. Make it worthwhile so that lives are not being wasted.
Thank you. All of your words make me feel so much stronger, and help me to remember this is the right decision. I’m so glad I found this group and I’m not alone.
 

AnotherMom58

New Member
Welcome abroad. I’m pretty new here myself, and I found a lot of wisdom in this group.
The basic problem in our situation is that doing the right thing goes against our maternal instincts. We want, naturally, to make things easier for our children - to enable them- but that’s exactly what should not be done in situations like this. You are not a bad mother. You’re just living through a very difficult situation.
My son joined the army out of high school, got injured overseas, was medically discharged and then became addicted to heroin. I used to give him and his girlfriend a lot of money. Because I wanted to protect him. It was only much later that it occurred to me that I was making it much easier for him to afford drugs, and that’s when I stopped giving them money. I felt like the worst mother in the planet, but now , I find a lot of comfort in that decision. My hard earned money will not be used to hurt my son by feeding his addiction. This clarity comes with time. I hope it will get easier for you too. (Not easy, mind you - nothing about this is easy - but easier). Take care.
 

skittles

Active Member
Hello Mitch and welcome!
This community is incredible. I come here periodically over the years, i originally did frequently now whenever i feel my resolve slipping or get overwhelmed. I put my son out at 18, i know exactly how you feel. I gave him the phone number to the local youth shelter and said thats where you live now. Its such a hard thing to do and because you feel guilty i guarantee youl find other ways to ‘help’, like a phone or money or cosign an apartment etc.., Our difficult children are masters at manipulation so be careful that you don’t just fall into other patterns of enabling bad behaviour. my son is now 34, hes had Periods of homelessness couch surfing five years in prison and on again off again girlfriend in which he produced five children and my enabling over the years have now and emeshed me with his ex-girlfriend due to the kids. It seems like it is a never ending battle, The hardest part but honestly the most liberating is when you come to the conclusion that they will never be what we hope they will be. that’s when you are finally able to start to step back live your own life and let them live with the consequences of their’s. Good luck and stay strong
 

RN0441

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

I have to pitch in and say that I bet that when you and your husband gave him that deadline, you would have been open to him coming to you and saying that he had a plan on how to turn this all around. By him just ignoring it, it would make me madder now that I have been there and know how manipulative my son was and can be. It's like he didn't care about us at all. It was so shocking for me to face that fact but when I did I got mad. I got real mad and that is when I was able to better protect my heart.

I think you have to stand your ground with him or else you will be like the boy who cried wolf and that would be the worst thing you could do. They say to be very careful with your threats because you MUST follow through no matter what.

Your son is young and struggling to find himself perhaps, but he isn't THAT young. Like my son, when they continue to make BAD decisions it's not our JOB to fix it or to fix them. I'm sure you and your husband set good examples for your son while he was growing up and he may just be plain spoiled, like my son. I begged my son to stop the madness more than once. Begged.

However I think the root of my son's issues were his anxiety and the fact that addiction runs in our family (like most families). But no matter what, he has to learn how to deal with it just like we all have to deal with what life throws at us. For many of us we have been through the mill before even having to deal with our adult boys that behave like spoiled brats.

You have come to the right place. You will get great advice. Yes, it goes against every grain in your body having to deal with these off the rails adults but you have to get real tough real fast or they will run you down. I am still going at it 9 years later but it's much better.

Hugs and stay strong!
 

Beta

Well-Known Member
Welcome Mitch2454. I am so sorry for what you're going through and, like everyone else here, I am so relieved you found this site. I would not have been able to survive if I had not had the compassionate, wise people who come here.

YOU ARE NOT A BAD MOTHER! I know very well the guilt these kids bring out in us. If we were bad parents, we wouldn't even bother to feel bad or to seek out websites like this.
There is no easy way out of this but the most important thing is for you to find the support you need to find healing for yourself. If you are broken you will not be strong enough to stand up to the begging, pleading and unkept promises that will happen over and over again. We become like a human emotional punching bags. After a while that gets old.
You are doing the right thing by your son by requiring him to be accountable, and yes, I know how hard it is. Every fiber in our being, especially as mothers, wants to protect, nurture, and give to our children. But that backfires with kids who refuse to take responsibility for their lives and their choices and who feel entitled to be supported financially. You do not want to spend years of your life and thousands and thousands of dollars, being used as an ATM machine and emotional punching bag; only to have to make the break years from now. Do what you need to do now to help your son move toward responsibility.
 

Beta

Well-Known Member
By the way, I have learned that when these Difficult Child are on the street, they have an amazing ability to survive. They manage to "network" with others like them and somehow they survive. It's beyond my ability to understand but there you go.
 

Mitch2454

New Member
Thank you everyone for your thoughtful responses. An update from my last post- Last Thursday, my son told me that he had found a place to stay. It was with a friend of his and his wife, my son would typically go over there some weekends so he could get drunk so not the best influence but nothing I can do about that. I will admit, I felt great relief to not have to take him to a homeless shelter. Selfish of me I know, it probably would have been a good lesson for him. On Friday afternoon, he decided to walk over to his friends house instead of waiting for him to come over and get him later that night so he walked the 5 miles. I did offer to drive him but he didn't want me too. He left, didn't tell anyone goodbye but has texted me various times like nothing is wrong. No apologizes, nothing. When I asked him what his plans were for the week job wise, he said its supposed to rain all week so he will probably make a few phone calls. SMH.
My emotions have been all over the place but when I realized he left Friday, I felt a sense of relief come over me. I've taken back my basement as my office again and I don't have to walk over him to get to my desk as he lays there and sleeps and watches TV all day. I have found that while I am ok during the day, my thoughts race at night hoping he is making good decisions and he is alright so I am obviously still having a hard time with it.
 

RN0441

100% better than I was but not at 100% yet
Hi
Glad that he is staying with friends for now. Like many before him, I imagine they won't let him just lay around while they pay for everything as parents do until they get sick of it.

Hopefully he will be motivated to get out and seriously look for a job realizing he has to pay his own way - which is what adults do!

You DEFINITELY are doing the right thing. Nothing changes if nothing changes.

My son was away from us for years (see below) and I had to have a hard talk with him the other day about drinking liquor in our home. He is in school full time and works and never goes out as we are new to the state and he has anxiety so hasn't met anyone yet. His dad and I went on vacation and he took care of the dogs and our home and gardens. He did everything we asked so did not see why there was a problem. I had to give him a hard talk about being accountable due to his past substance abuse. He has been home 1.5 years and we are letting him live here while in school. We have had to "redirect" him a few times since he's been living with us but for the most part, it is going very well and he has one semester of credit under his belt. I prayed before the talk to hope that He would guide me to the words I needed to use. I'm telling you this because I still have to be tough. After the talk I took a nap because it takes every ounce of energy I can muster.

Stay strong.
 

JayPee

Sending good vibes...
Mitch, I'm glad he's found a place to stay for now but I can't emphasize enough how important it is to find tools that will help you gain a backbone and not a wishbone. It's so important for us to have firmness, confidence and peacefulness in where we stand because even though our adult children may "temporarily get a place to stay" it's usually just that and the story repeats itself. They are no sooner back at our front door begging for another chance. I'm not trying to make you worry in advance but rather to continue to get stronger about this issue and be prepared with a Plan B, C D or E.

What I've experienced is that if one of my adult homeless sons finds a place to stay,(I have two) it seems to only be temporary and the reason being in their cases is that they continue to do the same ol' same ol'. If you don't work and help pay the rent and expenses those in the apt. or home getting up every day to go to work, start to resent this behavior (just as we do). And so the circle begins again and they are back on the streets again. No matter what we tell them they just can't seem to change their behaviors and look at this as a gift and a stepping stone to a better way.

I sincerely hope and pray that your son gets busy getting a job and working towards a happier future.
 

Nomad

Well-Known Member
Our healthy son had lots of anxiety issues. It turned around with a good part time job. He liked making money and getting praise from his co workers and boss. This is why I think a good part time job PLUS seeing a good therapist or life coach regularly is something to consider depending on the circumstances. A temporary solution for some, especially if anxiety is a big issue. I never detected any laziness in our son or drug issues. But definately anxiety at times and change can be really hard. Our son took colleges classes too, got a degree and a career. It was an extremely positive thing for him. Just a thought for consideration.
 
Top