Do you have an adult child living at home who’s driving you crazy in one way or another? Do they seem unable to do chores around the house, contribute financially, or be respectful? If so, you are not alone.

In recent years, the old expectation that kids will move on and out of the house has almost disappeared. The United States Census Bureau reported recently that one-third of young adults now live with their parents.

What are those kids still doing at home? According to the Census Bureau, not much at all for many of them. In fact, 1 in 4 is neither working nor going to school. In other words, they’re idle, going nowhere fast, and likely driving their parents crazy.

Having adult kids live under your roof can be a major source of stress in any family. Whether you’re concerned about your child gaining employment, paying their share of the rent, or contributing to household chores, a whole new set of dynamics occurs when adult children live with their parents.

“Staying in a pattern of doing too much for your child can leave him in a state of permanent adolescence, ready to ‘let Mom or Dad do it’ while he goes about his business.”

If you have an adult child living at home with you and it’s causing stress and resentment, keep reading. I’m going to tell you about ways you can help create a healthier, more respectful situation for both of you.

Get Rid of the Old Patterns

Whatever the reason for your kids being home, living together can be difficult. One of the biggest challenges is to create new patterns of behavior between you and your child that reflect the fact that your child is now an adult.

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The first thing to realize is that the expectations of your role as a parent and your child’s role as a child, have changed. Even though your child is an adult now, it is so natural to revert back to the old patterns and roles that operated when your kids were younger. These old patterns, unfortunately, will be roadblocks to helping your kids get on their feet and out the door. These old patterns will also hurt your efforts to maintain a strong and healthy relationship while they are home.

Over-Functioning Parents Lead to Under-Functioning Kids

One of the most common patterns parents and children fall back into is the over-functioning parent and the under-functioning child. This happens when you do too much for your kids, which results in your children doing too little. It’s easy to fall back into this pattern because it might have been going on for years. Every parent wants to be helpful to their children—that’s natural.

However, when you do for them what they can do for themselves, you are over-functioning. And when you over-function, your child under-functions. In other words, your child learns to be helpless which impedes their ability to move out and make their own way. And it can happen naturally—you clean up, do the laundry, and pay the bills, just like you always did. Only now, your child is an adult, and could (and should) be doing these things himself—right?

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Staying in this pattern can leave your child in a state of permanent adolescence, ready to “let Mom to Dad do it” while he goes about his business. And probably your adult child means no harm by any of this—he’s just behaving the way he always has because nothing has changed.

Over functioning for your child can be difficult to stop because it is often an automatic response. Also, it might give you that warm feeling of being helpful to your child. In reality, though, you hurt your child when you do things for them that they need to be learning to do themselves. Keep in mind the true meaning of the word helpful:

  • Is doing for your child what they can do themselves truly helpful?
  • When you think you’re being helpful, are you really showing your kids how real-life works?
  • What is your motivation for helping your kids? Is it for them? Or is it for you?
  • Are you giving in to your kids’ demands out of guilt or fatigue? Or because you want them to like you or not bug you? Or because you want to keep the peace?

Once in a while, doing things for those reasons is fine, but when it becomes a continual pattern with your adult child it ceases to be fine. However well-meaning, it’s never in your child’s best interest to take away their self-sufficiency or pride of accomplishment by doing too much for them.

How to Deal with Your Adult Child’s Disrespectful Behavior

Understand that your adult child living at home not only bothers you, but it likely bothers him as well. He might not want to be in a dependent situation. He might have expected to have a job and be on his own by now. Or, and this is common, he may be seeing his peers succeeding while he isn’t.

Your adult child might also have the idea that you would behave the way you always have—by taking care of him—rather than expecting him to pitch in more. All of these things will add to the tension of the situation. Typically, your adult child will take out her frustrations on the safest people she knows—her parents. But just because your child is frustrated does not mean it’s okay for her to act entitled and be disrespectful.

Knowing what your child is going through helps you to stay calm and to communicate with her without overreacting or getting into a power struggle. In a peaceful moment, you can say:

“Hey, Katie. I’d like to talk. I get that this living situation might not be exactly what you were expecting at this point in your life. Still, I’d appreciate it if you could express your annoyance in a polite way and help out around the house as long as you’re living here. When you come at me with an accusing tone or take me for granted, I don’t like it. If you’re going to live here, then you need to help out and learn to speak to me in a respectful way.”

When your child is being rude, disrespectful, and acting entitled, you do have a choice in how to handle the behavior. Remember, you are responsible for the kind of relationship you develop with your adult child. Don’t want to be treated disrespectfully? Respectfully tell him so. Let him know what you will and will not stand for.

Also, ask yourself if there is anything in your interaction with him that might be contributing to his disrespect and entitlement. Are you too snappy or too critical? Could he be acting entitled because you continually give in to him? Do you hold him accountable for his actions? Are you constantly “helping” him, leaving him feeling suffocated? Take a close look at yourself and how you interact with your child. Try to find positive ways to interact.

4 Steps to Restore the Peace With Your Adult Child at Home

Below are 4 steps you can take today to restore peace and sanity to the household while your adult child is living under the same roof as you. These steps will also help your children launch and thrive.

1. Set Clear Timelines and Expectations with Your Adult Child

It’s important to set expectations from the get-go, so your child will be prevented from overstepping boundaries. Your child should also let you know what they need from you, which will prevent you from overstepping their boundaries. By knowing what you expect from each other, your child can also better plan how to get on his own two feet. Ask yourself the following questions:

  • Do you want your child to move out by a certain age or when she gets employed?
  • Will you be expecting her to contribute money while living with you? And if so, how much?
  • What is the expectation about household chores?

One parent I know argued constantly with her adult daughter over chores. She decided to charge her adult daughter rent and then use the rent money for groceries and for a cleaning service for the house. It’s working out beautifully.

Don’t let feelings of guilt prevent you from asking these things from your kids even when they look and act like they can’t manage. Doing things for them will only contribute to holding them back. Just stay calm and remind them of the reasonable boundaries you have set. And stick to those boundaries. As your child begins to function on his own, he will feel better and your feelings of guilt will subside.

2. Don’t Blame or Shame

If your child is having trouble leaving, be careful not to blame yourself or them. Placing blame only increases the stress and keeps the anxiety cycle going. Focus on solving the problem, not on placing blame.

Also, keep in mind that many kids are staying or returning home because they enjoy and get along with their parents and are living productive lives, either in school or working. This can be a chance for you and your child to relish some extended time together—if boundaries are respected.

To help your child eventually move on, guide him in solving the problem of getting out within a reasonable time frame, rather than placing blame on yourself or on him for his inability to go it alone right now. The best advice is to stick to boundaries and look honestly at your own actions. Are you over-functioning for your child? Have you set clear expectations? Focus on the practical rather than getting stuck in a cycle of blame and guilt.

3. Be a Consultant, Not a Manager

Guide your child in making her life plan and help support her goals. But don’t manage and direct her. You may not agree with your child’s personal or professional choices, but you don’t necessarily get a vote in her decisions anymore. You are now a consultant to your child, not her manager. Allow her to live her own life without your meddling or judgments. By doing this, she will not regress back to a childlike role or fall into a pattern of behavior that psychologists call learned helplessness. And you will not regress back to the hands-on role you played when she was much younger.

4. Let Go

I once knew a family whose adult sons lived at home. It was in part due to a cultural norm (they were originally from a culture where adult children stayed with their parents, bringing new spouses into the house when they married). However, the parents in this family did everything for their sons, from doing laundry, to cooking, to buying their cars and paying for their insurance.

The end result was that they had four grown “boys” under one roof who could not (or would not) keep jobs, do chores, pay their own bills, or commit to relationships. Well into their forties, they never quite matured enough to be independent adults. These well-meaning parents had over-functioned and done too much for their kids—out of love and a feeling of wanting to be helpful. But mostly, it turns out, they dreaded the moment when their sons would leave. And, as a result, they never did leave.

We sometimes believe that kids who have trouble leaving home have some deep-seated problems. But often, if we take a closer look, it might actually be the parents having trouble letting go. This is a tough issue for parents to confront. But, it’s very important to ask yourself honestly if you are ready for your child to leave. And also to ask yourself honestly if you are in some way purposely holding him back.

Pay attention to subtle messages you’re sending to your child when you do things for him. Even if you say that you want him out, do you really? Is it possible that your child feels you need to be needed by him? Or that you don’t believe he can live on his own without you?

Look honestly at yourself to see if a pattern of dependency has developed between you and your child. If so, you can start changing the pattern today. Rather than focusing all your energy on your child, get the focus back to yourself and your own needs. Ask yourself what you might be avoiding whenever you over-focus on your child. When you take the focus off your child, it encourages your child to do more for himself. And it encourages him to think about letting go and moving out.

Keep in mind that if this pattern has been going on for a long time, it’s not fair to suddenly just kick your child out of the house. Instead, help them make a plan with realistic goals. One option is to make them pay rent. You can even save their rent and give it to them later for a down payment on an apartment. Have them apply for a certain number of jobs per week if they haven’t been doing so.

Remember, you can support and guide your child lovingly while at the same time letting go and encouraging their independence.

The Real Job of Parenting

Your real job as a parent is to prepare your kids to be on their own in the world. Your goal is to help them toward self-sufficiency. As hard as it can be to let your child go and make his or her own mistakes, it’s the best way to be a loving and responsible parent. To love your child is to assist in letting them make their own way.

If you feel guilty to expect more from your kids or guilty to stand up to their resistance to do more for themselves, learn to get over it. If you’re continually helping them and taking care of their needs, you’re not preparing them for the real world. The good news is that if you have a tendency to overdo things for your child and buy into their helplessness, you can change, starting today. Begin by questioning your own reluctance to stand strong for yourself and start allowing your child to do things for him- or herself.

Respect the necessary transition you are both going through and be persistent. Taking the steps described here will help your kids to spread their wings so that they can eventually fly and thrive.

Related content: Rules, Boundaries, and Older Children: How to Cope with an Adult Child Living at Home

Notes and References

About

Dr. Joan Simeo Munson earned her Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology from the University of Denver. She has worked with incarcerated individuals, families, adolescents, and college students in a variety of settings, including county and city jails, community mental health centers, university counseling centers, and hospitals. She also has a background in individual, group, and couples counseling. Dr. Munson lives in Colorado with her husband and three energetic children. She currently has a private practice in Boulder where she sees adults, couples and adolescents.

Comments (98)
  • Parent 24/7
    Sorry to say but this article and wishful dreams of boundaries isn’t realistic or helpful. For my example: we’ve created clear simple rules, like be in by 11 or find somewhere else to stay for the night. So when the kid shows up at 3am it’s -30 outside with iciclesMore hanging off his beard and has nowhere to go (there’s no shelter where we live), it’s clear rules don’t work, we won’t let him freeze. Sorry I’m frustrated over advice telling us to set boundaries it’s like the advice comes from someone who doesn’t live with this situation.
  • Frustrated

    No I don't know how old this post is or whether or not anyone will read this but I need some advice.

    I have been living with my girlfriend now for several years and to start with things were fine. Then one day a couple of years ago I was told that her adult son was moving back in. Whilst I am able to get along with and occasionally have a laugh and a joke with him, living with him is not a pleasurable experience and is causing me quite considerable stress.

    He is 25 and still lives like he did at university. His bedroom, which you can only call it because there is a bed in it, is filled with empty packets and bottles, and I am sure he hasn't actually seen the carpet since the day he moved back in.

    Despite being asked by both his mother and myself to keep the room tidy, help out with the shopping, the cleaning and the cooking all he does is lay in the pit that the room has been turned into.

    The smell alone makes me gag everytime I go upstairs.

    My girlfriend knows that the living arrangements are such that I have to take a handful of tablets every day just to try to sleep, something which I do not enjoy doing, especially seeing as he has absolutely no concept of volume control and will play videos on his phone at full volume at all hours of the night. It has been 2 years of this hell and I am not sure that I can see any silver lining or light at the end of the tunnel. He said he would only be here for 6 months. It's looking like an even longer 6 months than anyone had hoped for.

    I understand that he is my girlfriends son and that he always will be, but she sees what living with him has done to my health and well being and simply will not take my side in trying to set any kind of rules for him in my house.

    Other than physically throwing him out and ending my relationship I do not know what else I can do.

    Any ideas?????

    • I feel for you

      Hello Frustrated,

      I was going to use the same name for my comment. I am a mother of a 21 year old child. I am married to a wonderful man who is suffering and has been frustrated since my son turned 18. I have spoken to my ex-husband and told him to please take his son out of my house. But nothing works. My son promised that he would be out of the house at 18 and since he turned 16 I stopped enabling him, he has to wash his own clothes, clean his room and make his own food, I don't let him bring friends over and we constantly fight because he makes a mess in the kitchen, bathroom, dining room and does not clean up after himself, I do not allow him to bring girls to the house, for this he has been resenting me and he said when he turns 18 he would leave. Well, he is 21 and making my life and my husband‘s life a living hell. He stopped washing his clothes years ago and the stuff piles up and his room stinks. And even with the door closed we can smell his room from outside the house. He has a job and is soon to be done with school. However, my husband has become physically ill from the stress and anxiety that my son‘s presence is causing. I am on top of my son daily about him moving out. I have also made life difficult for my son in the hopes that this will get him to leave. I shut off the power in his room and restricted internet use... I can go on. I want my son out and I don‘t do anything for him and there is no reason for him to be here. So I agree with you that this article is not helpful. Whoever wrote this article has no idea what this is like. I love my son but I am not afraid to say that I cannot stand him. He is also verbally disrespectful to me. I wish I could give you advice but all I can say is that if your girlfriend loves you she should be on your side. I am 100% on my husbands side and I choose my husband over my son any day. My husband tells me that he loves me and would never leave me but we are both counting the days until my son moves out. If the roles were reversed and I was becoming ill from the living situation and if this was not my kid and if my husband was not taking my side I would leave. Best of luck to you..

  • Thank you!

    Where was this advice 30 years ago!

    The advice I am being given is all going recommending I ho for a non molestation order ,go into a refuge and worse.

    This advise is much more sensible and safe!

    Spread the word mord please! Especially to the authorities!

  • Jojo

    I have two adult children . They are like night and day . The older responsible and the younger one is 19 and thinks she is entitled to everything. She lives at home and does nothing . Her room is a mess and laundry not done . She even has the nerve to have her boyfriend sleep over sometimes . We don’t accept that and she ignores us . My husband and I are ready to kick her out because she won’t follow our house rules . We know that is not the thing to do but we need help !!!

    I told her being 19 does not make her an adult . Everything goes in one ear and out the Other.

  • Beth
    This article makes me feel less guilty about my anger. My son is employed full time and goes to college part time. He lives at home and for his 24th birthday my husband and I made him sign a living agreement. The agreement includes chores, rent andMore house rules. I’m anxious about how this is going to work out because he always “forgets” the rules and then I have to get after him about it. My husband is a great guy but pretty hands off about things. So, Agreement or not it’s the same thing. Now he has a new girlfriend, who is 19 and lives with her parents. Last weekend I found that she stayed the night with him in his bed, next door to ours! I was livid because we’ve had the talk about overnight guests before with the bottom line being that there are no overnight guests, male or female. My house, my rules. He agrees. During the week he brings her over and takes her home at 3am. See, she didn’t stay overnight! Again, we had the conversation that all guests have to leave by 1am. He forgot. Yeah right. He didn’t forget he just wanted to see if he could get away with it. Then there is the staying out all night (when he has to go to work in the morning) and waking me up at 3am when I need to get up at 4 to go to work. Last night I told him if he does it again he can sleep in his car or pitch a tent in the back yard cuz I’ve had it. I’ve tried appealing to his health. Lack of sleep will lead to bad job performance blah blah. He says “I’m fine”. *sigh*. I’m exhausted, frustrated, love the kid, but I can’t wait for him to leave. His lifestyle is killing me.
  • Angie
    My daughter who is turning 26 in a few days, complains about everything, is disrespectful, and just plain doesn't like the way I am. I'm paying for her college, phone, car, insurance until she finishes college. She threatens to quit college if I keep complaining about her tryingMore to live above her means, afterall she does not work. She becomes belligerent, calling me names, I'm tired, but want her to finish school which she will do in the fall of 2019.
  • Sakib
    Have a grown-up kid with their own tyke move in and following 9 months they have no activity and not even in school it is difficult to deal with and I am at lost what to do. They are inconsiderate and discourteous and don't help with anything. I need theMore best for them Suggestions??
  • Salman

    1. You will contribute fiscally to this family unit. You can call it lease, or food and lodging or notwithstanding living expenses. In any case, in all actuality, something must get hacked up every week and it has little to do with the undeniable truth that everything increments with each warm body that is planted in a home. Nourishment, water, electric, link, everything. That is an easy decision. The more essential purpose behind pitching into the family unit is on the grounds that you should, that is the reason. In case you're not buckling sufficiently down to fork over cash every week, at that point you're not buckling sufficiently down. That is all. Toss in a couple of home cooked dinners and access to clothing and you'd be up a brook in the event that you needed to REALLY pay for so much stuff outside of this home. Be upbeat to hand over a negligible yet sensible sum. You don't see it now, however this ridiculous and unreasonable interest is building character and a gratefulness for what things cost, of which you really have no clue.

    This is my home, accordingly it is MY room. You get the chance to rest in it. You are welcome to appreciate proceeded with protection in this space is secured under my home loan installment, inasmuch as you regard this space. Foul scents leaving it render your protection invalid and void. The identification of wet towels, sustenance things or ANY doubt of lead unbecoming additionally invalidates the terms of your security.

    2. We are your family, not your flat mates. Grabbing after yourself is an indication of regard for the individuals who live among you. Not doing as such is an obtrusive indication of youthfulness which demonstrates you basically don't comprehend this. Nobody needs to see hairs in a sink, advance on toenail clippings or discover nourishment, utensils, blood, body parts or schmegma in the restroom. On the off chance that individuals can make sense of what you've had for breakfast in view of the remaining parts left on the kitchen counter, you are being impolite. The house keeper is unreasonably bustling pruning the cash tree out back. Put stuff away and dispose of your own chaos. Regular kindness, there's nothing more to it.

    3. Principles are set up for regard, not deride. We get it. We were there once, as well. You're not the main child to come back from school just to yell about all the embarrassing treacheries of your folks. In any case, in the event that you've been given a check in time, it's presumable on the grounds that you've given us motivation to give one. In the event that you've been given cutoff points on the auto you're driving, similar remains constant. The most straightforward fix for this is to begin doing what's asked for of you, comprehend the significance of demonstrating your development through activities over words and procure OUR regard. Need to go back and forth at your very own relaxation? Just purchase your very own auto and pay your very own protection.

    4. Being more than 18 doesn't make you an adult. If it's not too much trouble Quit stepping your feet, confirmation close by, and shouting that you're a grown-up now. It just makes us chuckle. The main thing you've achieved to date is overcoming secondary school. Enormous challenge. It's the 21st century, loaded up with innovation that for all intents and purposes peruses the books for you. You guessed complete secondary school. Whatever way you're on right currently doesn't bring down the truth that you are by and by living with your mama and daddy and you won't – can't – be viewed as a grown up under these interesting conditions. Until the point that you are monetarily free you are determinedly NOT a grown up. Try not to be distraught. Try not to sulk. What's more, never be stupid enough to think the grass is greener somewhere else. I resist you to locate a living circumstance superior to here (yet on the off chance that you do, I will definitely enable you to pack your things). My inspiration is exclusively love. I am doing my part in setting you up to be a decent spouse, mother, husband, stellar representative, upstanding subject or under-the-radar detainee.

    You. Are. Welcome.

    Love, Mom

    • Sameboat60
      Love this! Well said!
  • FedUp

    I'm very frustrated and disgusted... adult son in 30s still home, has been abusive and aggressive, no job, rarely does chores. IF he does, acts like is really doing a favor or it gives him license to misbehave. I'm over 65, widowed. He's primarily verbal, emotional with some physical.

    At one point he caused a pretty major injury... he has yelled in my face, spit, grabbed and twisted my arms, pushed/ pinned, blocked me, put me in a headlock. I was knocked onto the floor at least once. That happened near the top of stairs, I feared I could fall down them. He has held my head against sofa by pressing his hand on my forehead.

    He at times disabled the phone (home) and blocked internet and computer access. (I pay the bills.) He took my cell phone once or twice. He damaged parts of the house plus a couple major appliances and a chair.

    A few times police were called, that was a little help but not much. He was away from home a few times but later back... That seems to cause more resentment. At the same time, he must have idea he can or should get away with it because there hasn't been a long lasting consequence.

    • Lainey
      I feel your pain! I'm nearly 55 and in poor health these days. I've brought up 4 sons on my own after divorce. I've never known anything other than being controlled or physically or verbally abused in one way or another all my life. It didn't bode well for myMore future parenting skills I'm afraid. I feel a failure and weak. My eldest son left straight from school and has gone from strength to strength, my 2nd eldest took until he was well into his 20's ,but he got there. However my 2 youngest ages 22 and 28,both with kids of their own,who live with their amazing Mums thankfully,have made my life a living Hell! They're not violent towards me,but the 28 year old has been in trouble since a young age and seems to have mental health problems due to drugs etc. My youngest is a very pleasant lad,but I spoilt him and made him it seems incapable of taking care of himself and he had chosen to find his lifestyle in a way I am ashamed and embarrassed of. This advice has given me a little ray of hope and light! The authorities mean well but they want me to take out non molestation orders and move to a refuge,which is just causing me more distress. The police have been disgusting with how they've treated me. I hope like me you'll now put this advise to good use. Like I've been told when I say I'm scared to throw them out what will become of them We're actually killing them to,but with love etc. We're doing them no favours. Good luck!
    • Brooke

      I am reading your comment and crying. You are going through worse than me. I would call adult protective services to help you and keep you safe. My son is 24. Has a job. I get about 140.00 about every other month from him. He gets home from work and makes himself a 5 course meal a 2:00 am. I get woken up my the smell of barbeque in my air vents. He wont follow rules. He is getting better at cleaning the kitchen after himself. He smokes pot , has all kinds of bongs ect in his room. What I envisioned my small pitch to be it now with barbeque x.and smoker. When ever I try to talk to him about moving out, he starts yelling. I am a single mom.

      I'm in very extensive therapy for depression. Most if the time don't want to come out of my bedroom.

    • Glasmom
      That sounds really terrible and really dangerous. You owe it to yourself to take action. I stongly recommend speaking to the police (go to the station - not during a crisis) to ask if they can advise you about pressing charges, restaining orders, legal aid, etc. Or call an attorney,More if you can afford it. Or call a woman's crisis line. They deal with domestic abuse and should be able to point you toward help. In spite of the fact that this is a parent-child relationship, this is domestic abuse. My advise is to kick your son out, change the locks (and your phone number and wifi password, if necessary) and let him know he will not be allowed back. I also recommend finding a therapist who can support you emotionally during this. It's really important to have someone trustworthy provide perspective. Is there anyone at church or work who can support/help you? When you doubt yourself, think of how you would advise a daughter if her boyfriend treated her like your son treats you. If you're worried about how he will care for himself, please remember he's an adult and should be able to care for himself. After you're gone, he will HAVE to support and care for himself. You're his mom and may feel responsible; but you aren't helping him by allowing these ABUSIVE behaviors to continue. If you think there's even a remote posibility of him physically harming you when you kick him out, enlist the aid of the police. Be safe!
  • rone dee

    In my case... I have 3 adult children 24. 28 & 30 that have moved back into my home (each had been on their own w/significant others for up to 5 years). One works full time, and is transgender. The 2 others work sporadically when the mood, and/or lack of spending cash moves them to. All three went to college, and were helped by my wife and I. All 3 don't contribute a dime, or a finger to any chores. They are not very communicative about anything. They are actually very apathetic, and indifferent to us or anyone (except to each other!). We could blame this on any number of things? i.e. their inability to live on their own, displeasure with themselves, their social life, society etc. My wife feels the "deep" desire & need to diagnosis, and repair their problems. That's been her job for 30 years! I, on the other hand had/have the burden of supporting all of them, including my wife, and 3 kids under 18 y/o. Recently, I stated (calmly) an ultimatum to the 3 oldest that they would need to find "good" jobs, and leave my home within the next 6 months. My wife went (in my opinion) crazy about my "ultimatum" and is leaving me! aka divorce. She feels that I have lost all respect for her, and any love I had for my kids. I'm 60, and would like to retire at some point before I die. Now, I'm between a rock and a hard place, back paddling to try and repair my marriage, and the popular perceived notion that I am a cruel jerk of a dad that won't help my wife "fix" my older kids various "phobias and hard luck" they've been through.

    This is more of a warning, or "a word to the wise" than a search for answers or sympathy. Parents need to be on the same page in raising their children. Too late I'm now finding, that we were NOT. Please talk about this type of situation early on. Like before you even have children! If I could see what has happened now in a crystal ball? I may not have had kids, or maybe even not have gotten married in the first place. YOU BOTH NEED TO BE ON THE SAME PAGE! And then TOGETHER stick to your guns. The parents' home should never be a destination for an able, adult child. Only a safety net for them to: regain, regroup & re-enter. Period

  • Fred

    Hello,

    We have 5 children, 4 girls and a boy ( 4 women & a Man to be exact ) 3 living at home.

    The 3 eldest `girls' ranging from 33 down to 22 are nothing but trouble, as is our son.

    Yes we have helped them all countless times over decades.

    Both my Wife & I loved our parents & grandparents NATURALLY ( without being prompted)

    Yet all our children are self centred, hard, without a care for anyone except themselves, takers, never put themselves out in the slightest for us or any other family member.

    However for their boyfriends, girlfriends family, they can't do enough, they are filled with love for their whole family they have become associated with.

    The `other' families are nothing special just ordinary people.

    I can't emphasise enough, that our adult `children' lack any sort of natural feeling Eg: We look after my wife's mother ( who is 98 and lives alone ) cutting a huge lawn, shopping, and many other duties, as well as running our side of things. We mention that to our children and they say "she's your mother/ mother in law" I went around 5 months ago.

    Superficially to a stranger, they might come over as if they care, but in reality, they don't give a dam.

    They live their lives totally separately from us, never telling us anything ( or very little ) about their lives, whilst socialising with the other families

    Cold fish, without feeling for us.

    At 65 I have had enough, but my wife is a mug, and laps it all up, taking whatever emotional scraps are thrown our way, this in turn causes me problems, as I can't take it any more

    Your advice is needed, please help

    • Rebecca Wolfenden, Parent CoachEP Coach
      I hear you. It can be very difficult to look at your adult children, and wonder how they learned such different values than the ones that you tried to model. The truth is, your children are now adults, and have the ability to make their own choices andMore determine their own values. At this point, it could be more effective to focus on your own responses and boundaries with your kids, rather than trying to make them behave a certain way. I also encourage you to keep in mind that people are not static, fixed objects, but rather constantly changing and dynamic creatures. As long as we are alive, it’s never too late to change. You might find our blog, "Where Did I Go Wrong?" How to Handle Feeling Disappointment with Your Adult Child, useful as you move forward. I hope that you will write back and let us know how things are going for you and your family. Take care.
      • Fred

        Thanks for your reply:

        "wonder how they learned such different values than the ones that you tried to model"

        ** In a nutshell, that is what eats me away, not knowing! ***

        We live in Britain, I feel that in the USofA there MAY STILL, be places were communities support traditional values ( that's perhaps more of a hope, than based on fact ), Britain, Europe, is a sterile, lost place.

        As you say `people aren't static, things change', but having suffered over a period of 10 years, with no change in sight, I am nearing the stage of no return, well its already past.

        ALL our girls suffer from blind total devotion to ` the other families' no matter how low their standards are.

        EG: second eldest girl ran off down the road ( literally, and out of the blue ) at the age of 21 with someone, that openly, and in front of our whole family stated he had no commitment to her ! spent 4 years with him, until he kicked her out. When we talked about it, she said " His Dad ( our daughters friend ) was so abusive to his wife, she tried to commit suicide, but out of the two of them I liked the Dad " Yet my daughter set very different values for me, continually bickering about very slight problems I had with her.

        This is true of ALL our children, no matter how low, how base, or just plain average the `other family' are they are god like compared to us.

        Its HATE they have for us, and its driving me mad not knowing why.

        Eg: Our eldest daughters very first serious boyfriends mother, really befriended our daughter, taking her for drives in her sports car, my poor old wife used to do her best to be nice, asking what the family were like, and what she had been doing on the weekend. A typical reply would be thus, " you wouldn't like his mother, she's 3 years older than you but has wonderful skin, she looks half you age, you wrinkly old hag"

        Why, OH why, I need to know

        • Tree
          I live in the United States and it is no different here. My youngest son has had a personal tragedy which led him to some bad choices. i.e. prescription drug addiction. 2 times in prison for non-violent offenses. Possession without a prescription. My son is normally a very loving, sensitiveMore person. A prison record made it hard to get a good job and so on. I've taken him to ER more times than I can remember for overdose. I've never, never tried to make him feel less of a human being, and lovingly tried to lift him up by praising his strengths. But, at the end of the day, he hates me for it. And strange as it may seem, I understand why. He feels like less than a man because of all his mistakes. He lives on our property when he used to own his own place. We've laid down rules so we can co-exist which makes him look small to his friends. BUT, I won't back down when it comes to HIS friends coming to my home and I don't know who they are. He wants to still feel like a man of means, great, we don't have much, but we've worked hard to carve out a home and pay for it. My husband I have the right to say we don't want a woman to move in with him, or people don't know coming in our home to socialize with him. He is a guest here, but has mistakenly gotten the idea this is his place as much as ours. He blew up on me tonight, and I've just gotten out of the hospital after 8 days and now I am having treatments in home. He scares me, and I am afraid he will hurt me someday because he has so much anger and hate at everything but lays all the blame on me. I am raising his youngest son, my sweet little autistic grandson, and he hates me for that. He was in jail when he was born and the mother was an addict. Yes, I could have looked the other way and pretended the child didn't exist, but I'm not made of stone. I felt I did the right thing for this child and I love him. He hates me for that. And I know why. Because I am able to do what he can not. Does this help at all? It's not a positive answer, it is a very sad answer. But it's the only answer that I could conceive of why he hates me.
  • Feeling unappreciated

    I have my 19 year old niece living with me for the last 2 years. I also have 3 grown sons all living and working on their own. The boys are not happy with my niece living with me and my husband (their dad) as they feel she's taking advantage of us. Basically she grew up with no rules and total freedom to do whatever she wants and come and go as she pleases. She has a full time job and pays us $300 rent which we started charging her a couple months ago. The problem is she is basically using the house as a place to shore change, store her clothes, etc. I don't have any chores or responsibilities that I expect from her. When she's not working she's either hanging out / partying with her friends or staying at her boyfriends.

    Am I wrong to have a curfew for her? I feel she's only 19 and should not be staying at her boyfriends every night (he lives with his parents) and coming back to the house to shower and go to work. I feel a curfew of 1:00 is fair...am I out of touch?

    • Fred

      No you are NOT wrong, but in my experience, they won't listen to your advice, and when things go wrong, you will be stuck with their problems as well.

      Point out you care, and why you don't agree with her. Avoid arguments, and perhaps encourage her to find her own place, help her in that task, and wish her well, as she leaves

    • Rebecca Wolfenden, Parent CoachEP Coach
      We hear from many parents and other family members who have young adults living with them, so you’re not alone in wondering about appropriate boundaries and rules. Something that can be useful is to think of your niece as a tenant or a roommate rather than a family member.More What rules and boundaries would you set in place for a tenant or a roommate living with you? You can find more guidance on this in our article Rules, Boundaries and Older Children Part I. I recognize how challenging this must be, and I wish you all the best moving forward. Take care.
  • Donna
    Why is this so prevalent in our society, a child who was loved and nurtured, totally ruining our life as a parent. I have a son who is 19, has aspergers, ocd and anxiety. He was doing good his first semester in college then his second semester didn'tMore listen to anyone's advice, took too many classes, had a nervous breakdown and had to get a medical leave. Now all he does is shower most of the day, talk about being in a nursing home so he can relax and have someone help him all day, etc, etc. I feel like stepping in front of a train just so I don't have to deal with him anymore, all the doctor's appointment's med's, therapy don't fix anything. I want to live, don't I deserve happiness, I feel so trapped and isolated from fun things others are experiencing with their family. Just feel totally cheated. I pray all the time, try to think positive, only to feel like I am really dead, just not buried yet. People that have normal children have no clue how blessed they are.
    • Donna
      Having the same name and similar problems must mean something. I feel the same way you do. I have a son, my youngest, who is 26, with a low level of aspergers, ADD, and anxiety. My husband and I have supported his decisions to go to college,More leave college, return to college. I lost count how many majors he's switched to. Right now he's in an Individual Studies program and only needs 16 credits to graduate, but wants to quit. We've spent thousands with his insistence that he wanted to go to college. I think some of it was to live away from us but now he's even using a back problem as an excuse to quit. My two other children are fine. What did I do wrong???
  • Kathy
    After our 47 year old son moved back home (getting divorced), he told us he won't 'do' chores but he does keep his room neat and does his laundry. He'll offer to do house projects on a Sunday (takes anywhere from 1-6 hours) when he's around, will make his ownMore breakfast when he goes to work and puts only his dishes into the dishwasher. And that's it! He can see an overflowing trashcan in the kitchen but won't take any initiative to take it to the outdoor trashcans. He doesn't contribute to the groceries (costs have skyrocketed since his return) and doesn't pay rent. He claims his bills are too high and wants to make a dent in them. In the meantime, my husband and I are retired, have a limited income and don't want to take on additional groceries and utility costs. I have complained to my husband that we are merely a free hotel but we have had so many arguments that we are starting to erode our relationship with one another. So now I have totally shut down and just bear through it. I don't understand how a family member who is being financially taken care of won't contribute with chores that are important to us. We didn't handle it correctly in the beginning and now we're stuck. I am cook, housekeeper and shopper in exchange for a sometime Sunday project that often costs my husband and I lots of money. For example, he decided to buy new shelving for the garage to clean it out and we paid for it! Any suggestions on how to get this situation changed? I keep looking downstream and if I truly say what I feel, our family will be estranged forever. You know it's bad when I keep thinking I want to go back to work just to avoid living here.
    • Rebecca Wolfenden, Parent Coach
      I hear you. It can be really challenging when you feel stuck in your current pattern with your adult son living back at home. The good news is, it’s not too late to change if the current arrangement is not working for you. At this point, itMore could be useful to talk with your husband privately during a calm time, and try to find common ground about what will be expected of your son while he is living with you. Once you have come to an agreement, it will be important to sit down with your son, and communicate the rules moving forward. It might be useful to write up a living agreement which outlines your expectations, as well as how you will respond if your son is not meeting these. I recognize how difficult this must be for you right now, and I hope you will write back and let us know how things are going for you and your family. Take care.
  • Rebecca
    I have two adult kids the oldest is a girl and the youngest is a boy i have told them over and over knock before you come in i dont have a door right now they keep coming in anyways n i told them if i dont respond dont takeMore it that i want u to come in and if i say no dont do it anyway still dont matter and when im gone the go threw my stuff and take what they want what can i do
    • Rebecca Wolfenden, Parent Coach
      Setting up rules and boundaries with your adult children can be tricky even under the best of circumstances, and I hear the additional challenges you are facing right now with your adult children coming into your room without permission and going through your things. Something to keep in mindMore is that we all engage in behavior that works for us on some level, and we are not usually motivated to change if we are comfortable with the way things are going. While setting limits and boundaries with your kids is important, it’s also necessary to hold them accountable and make them uncomfortable if they are not following the rules. You might consider writing up a living agreement with them which outlines your expectations for their behavior, as well as consequences if they are not following the rules. I also encourage you to secure your belongings until your kids are better able to respect your boundaries. I recognize what a difficult situation this must be for you, and I wish you all the best moving forward. Take care.
  • Mamma bear
    Help, living with two adult daughter's who are taking advantage of me, older daughter has two children which I love with my life, she is going to college. I help her with the kids. Makes me feel unappreciated for all that I do for her.  The other younger daughter alwaysMore feels that I  owe her. Please need advice. 8
  • MaNaun
    We have a 26 year old son who still lives with us. He was diagnosed HIV poz when he was 22! He has became an activist and spends much time helping others who suffer the stigma of this disorder. He also has had 20-30 hospital stays because of reacurring cellulitis.More He works and is starting back to college at the end of the month. Our problem is our oldest son lives across the country and has 4 boys under 7. They really need our help, with the boys. But our 26 year old refuses to move with us. We could do well there,we r ready to retire. Please help!
    • RebeccaW_ParentalSupport
      MaNaun I hear you.  It sounds like you are really feeling torn right now between moving across the country to help your oldest son and your grandsons, and staying where you are to be close to your younger son with his ongoing health issues.  Something to consider is that youMore are all adults, and have the right to make your own decisions.  If you feel that moving is going to be the best option, you can make that choice even if your younger son chooses to remain where he is.  If you feel that staying in your current location will be the best option, you can make that decision too.  Sometimes when facing a major choice, such as whether or not to move, it can be helpful to talk it through with a neutral third-party, such as a counselor or therapist, who can help you to look at your options and come up a plan moving forward.  If this is something you might find helpful, you can start by contacting the http://www.211.org at 1-80-273-6222.  211 is a service which connects people with available resources in their community.  I recognize what a tough decision this must be for you, and I wish you and your family all the best moving forward.  Take care.
  • frustratedparentsinMN
    Our 30 year old son moved back home 1 year ago due to job loss and roommate troubles, severe anxiety and panic attacks.  He was diagnosed with ADHD at age 3, struggled through school when he refused to take any med's at the age of 16 and dropped out ofMore high school in 12th grade.  He's held jobs from pizza delivery, temp jobs and landscaping but no longevity at any of the jobs.  He refuses to see a mental health professional and has isolated himself in a dark room for most of the day and night.  He will not watch TV with us (his parents) or even eat at the table with us.  He eats after we're done eating to avoid us.  He gets agitated and defensive if we ask about him going to a Dr. for his anxiety, getting a job/supporting himself/moving out.  He will run back to his room to avoid any confrontation.  We are almost 60 and want to enjoy our upcoming retirement and we cannot afford to support our son.  We don't know where we can reach out for help since he refuses to get medical attention. We are at the end of our ropes ... any suggestions are greatly appreciated.  Thanks much!
    • RebeccaW_ParentalSupport
      frustratedparentsinMN I hear how much you are struggling right now with your son, and I’m glad that you’re here reaching out for support.  It can be so difficult when it does not appear that your son is motivated to work toward independence.  Something to consider is that, in general, peopleMore do not change if they are comfortable with the way that things are going for them.  If the way things are right now is “working” for your son, it’s not likely that he will be motivated to change his behavior.  Your son is also an adult, and has the ability to make his own choices in areas such as addressing his anxiety or getting another job.  This doesn’t mean that you are powerless, however.  You have the right to set your own boundaries, and enforce the rules of your home.  For example, you could set a deadline by which your son must be employed or enrolled in a GED program in order to continue living in your home, or consider other boundaries about the level of support (financial and otherwise) you are willing to continue providing.  You might consider https://www.empoweringparents.com/article/ground-rules-for-living-with-an-adult-child-plus-free-living-agreement/ which outlines these expectations, as well as how you will hold him accountable if he is not following through.  I recognize how challenging this situation can be, and I hope that you will write back and let us know how things are going for you and your family.  Take care.
    • LaDainaAllen
      Tell him that he has 30 days to get a job or he has to go. At 30, he's living on very borrowed time, because after 18, they are grown and are of legal age. So he needs to get on the ball.
  • troubledinmi
    I have an 18 year old son that started college this year. He lives on-campus, but he is home more than at school. We pay all the bills since he goes to college full time. My husband expects him to cut wood and other things to help out when he isMore home, which I don't feel is unreasonable. We also expect him to pick up after himself and do regular maintenance on his vehicle. He pretty much just sleeps and refuses to help out.   He does not get into trouble or do drugs and he gets all A's in school. I feel this should count for something, but I realize that we have to do something. We told him that if we don't see improvement by the end of this school year, he will have to make it on his own.  I want him to be successful and I'm very worried. My husband wants to kick him out. We fight over this constantly. I am at my wits end and I don't know what to do.
    • RebeccaW_ParentalSupport
      troubledinmi I hear you.  It can be very difficult when it feels as though your son is not doing anything to help out around the house, despite everything you are providing to him.  It’s even more challenging when it feels as though you and your husband do not agree onMore what should be done.  At this point, since you have already set the limit that you need to see improvement by the end of the school year or he will need to shoulder more responsibility, I recommend sticking with that boundary.  It could also be useful to determine exactly what you need to see him doing differently, so that everyone (your son, your husband and you) is on the same page in terms of the expectations.  After all, “improvement” is a term which can mean different things to different people, whereas stating something like, “You will cut wood for 30 minutes and do another designated chore each day you are home” is more concrete.  Please be sure to write back and let us know how things are going with your family.  Take care.
      • Sadmama
        I have a similar case as troubledinmi. So what do you do, if your kid still won't listen (or wont do his part) after so many times of talking, setting goals and expectations? Should you really kick him out so he learns?
        • Rebecca Wolfenden, Parent Coach
          I’m sorry to hear about the challenges you are facing with your child, and I’m glad that you’re reaching out. Something to keep in mind is that anything you choose to provide to an adult child is considered a privilege, not a right. This includes necessities such asMore food, clothing, and a place to live. Ultimately the choice of whether to tell your child to leave is going to be yours, and only you can decide if this is a limit that you would be willing and able to enforce. I recognize what a difficult situation this must be for you, and I wish you all the best moving forward.
  • Myhrthasmvdon
    I can't take it anymore. My 27 yr old son is so disrespectful and rude. He doesn't help out. Anything said to him along the lines of doing for himself, changing his attitude, taking responsibility, he calls being negative. And he's not listening to any negativity. He has a drinkingMore problem as well. Is selfish, inconsiderate, and likes to create problems with other family members by his drama. I live in a 1 bedroom Apt. My boyfriend lives with me. Yet, my 27 yr old son is comfortable sleeping in my living room. Doesn't feel necessity to keep that area tidy, or help with chores. Takes what he wants without asking, or reembersment. Says he has no where else to go. I'm fed up already.
    • Fedup2!

      What is it with these disrespectful, rude, selfish, always unhappy, nothing is ever enough, 20 somethings? They use alcohol to mask their problems..

      My son has so much going for him, yet complains about everything. The problem is that I have given him too much.. time to let the little birdie fly. His older brothers are pushing for him to leave as well. He treats me like sh.. even though I just paid for his 6 year college degree to the tune of $150,000. Today, these kids expect too much from their parents. His dad left when he was three, never paid child support and has done nothing. I've done it ALL and am treated like a doormat. I guess.. like father like son. He learned from his father to disrespect me.... and thus treats me the same as his father did. Time for this little birdie to fly and try to resolve his own problems, so I can have some peace and quiet.. and my own budget.. to try to save for my retirement that I, alone, am funding.

  • michellelockwood5
    My 21 yr daughter has the best intentions but horrible choices she and her son live w my fiance and I .she does not want to be here and wants her own place . the problem is she keeps coming back . she works . I baby sit for freeMore .pay for all gas cause she has no car. She always says she's gonna pay rent and and gas and help w house. butt she does not ! always has an excuse. Or twist the facts to her advantage. She and her son have no where to go.do I do tough love and make her leave or stay .she is so disrespectful and mean mouthed that I'm afraid I might hurt her. I think she is just blind to it all. What do I do to help her? help us. She is destroying my relationship w my fiancée if something does not change we may not make .I'm 41 and never been married by choice! And he supports us all mostly.
    • RebeccaW_ParentalSupport
      michellelockwood5 I’m sorry to hear about the challenges you are facing right now in your living situation, and I’m glad that you are here for support.  I hear from many parents who are struggling with the choice to allow an adult child to remain in the home, or tell herMore to leave, and the presence of a grandchild makes the choice that much harder.  You are not alone in experiencing this situation.  In the end, you are going to be the best judge of what you are able to live with, and what you cannot tolerate.  If you decide to allow your daughter to stay, I recommend https://www.empoweringparents.com/article/ground-rules-for-living-with-an-adult-child-plus-free-living-agreement/ which outlines specific expectations for her behavior, such as paying a certain amount of rent, how much she is expected to contribute to other living expenses, housework, and so on.  In addition, if you are fearful that you might hurt her, I encourage you to work on finding strategies to help you stay in control.  Our article, https://www.empoweringparents.com/article/losing-your-temper-with-your-child-8-steps-to-help-you-stay-in-control/, might be a good place to start.  Please be sure to write back and let us know how things are going for you and your family.  Take care.
      • michellelockwood5

        RebeccaW_ParentalSupport michellelockwood5 t

        Ty so much . I will def try the living agreement n def work on being more patient . ty for the links . I will  keep in touch and in formed HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

  • Nowhere to run

    I can't get my disrespectful, pathological lying daughter out of my house.  She doesn't work. She doesn't clean up after herself.  She is a slob. She doesn't help out financially. She does nothing. I ask her to do something and she mouths off at me. She disrespects me to the point of abuse. Yells and swears at me when her friends are around.  I ask her not to bring her friends to my house and she does anyway. I]ve stopped being quiet and ask them to leave and she goes nuts on me and they don't leave. Worst thing is she has a baby (whom I love with all my heart) and now I am taking care of her too,  My daughter is only interested in social media and going out to parties.  When her baby was 4 days old she was out partying all night. She sneaks out to party. Pawns her child off on anybody who will take her.  I tell her she is not going out and she sneaks out the backdoor. She behaves like a rebellious teenager.  I have called Children's Aid on her and that only made her furious at me  We had my granddaughter full time until  recently.  Now the father  takes her for 3 days one week 4 days the next.  An hour after he drops her off my daughter wants to go out. She just  isn't a good mother.  When she had a vehicle she had the baby out all hours of the night. She'd get home at 3 or 4 am. Sleep all day leaving her child in her bouncy chair.  She has admitted she has no maternal instinct. I work full time. I do it all.  I'm in my fifties and was looking forward to my grown children moving out so I could begin the next chapter of my life and now I'm tempted to sell my house and get a small apt with no extra bedrooms.  Her response to that is that I'm a terrible grandmother to sell my granddaughter's home.  She uses my granddaughter against me all the time.  She has stolen off me and others. She has forged cheques from my bank account. The police talked me out of pressing charges. Are there drugs involved? Yes! However, she denies it.   I need her out of my house but where is she going to go with no income? And who is going to take care of that poor child? My daughter needs help.  I've tried many times to talk to her hoping to work something out so that we can at least coexist but it always ends up with her freaking out telling me I'm crazy. Trust me when I say sometimes I feel like I am going crazy.  My house is a mess and overrun with baby things.  I can't do this anymore. Does anybody have suggestions???

    P.S. I have a nice basement apt in my house.  I had the previous tenant leave in April because I needed my daughter out of my space.  That lasted a week. It now looks like a junkyard and she won't go down there.  The baby sleeps in my spare bedroom upstairs. My daughter sleeps down there but that is it.  She won't even shower down there.  We fight all the time and yet she won't leave me alone. How can I get her help if she she doesn't realize she has a problem?

    • miserable mom
      i fully understand. i have a 22 yr old who lives at home, has a P/T job which she uses to go out with her friends and buy lotto tickets. she does very little around the house but the biggest problem is the way she speaks to me:More "f...off", "shut-up", "bit..". I have a graduate degree; she had a good education and I don't know who she is anymore. a lot of her problems started with the people she hung out with. low lifes. and now she speaks and acts just like them. she takes college courses but gets a "C" at best! She has no motivation, ambition or manners. If I throw her out, she has no where to go. I am torn as my home life is torturous but I feel obligated to provide a home for her. There is a constant source of tension in the house and no happiness. I am almost 65 and look like Im 80. What should I do?
    • RebeccaW_ParentalSupport

      Nowhere to run 

      I hear you.It can be

      so difficult when you not only have an adult child behaving this way, but you

      also have a grandchild to consider as well.You make a great point that it’s difficult to get your daughter help if

      she doesn’t realize that she has a problem.The truth is, people generally do not change if they are content with the

      way things are going.If your daughter does

      not have a problem with the current living arrangement, then it’s not likely

      that she will be willing to change.While

      you cannot make your daughter change, you can look at how you can make her

      uncomfortable through your actions.If

      you have not already done so, you might consider https://www.empoweringparents.com/article/ground-rules-for-living-with-an-adult-child-plus-free-living-agreement/ which outlines your expectations for your daughter

      while she is living with you.I hear

      your concern for your granddaughter as well, and ultimately, you are the best

      judge of what limits you are willing to enforce, and what you are willing to

      live with.I recognize how challenging

      this must be for you, and I wish you and your family all the best moving

      forward.Take care.

  • sportsindy

    Just got married ten months ago and my wifes 38 year old son has moved back in going on four months and no end i site. He has disrupted everything. He has taken over one of our cars, whatever he wants his mother gets for him. He will not take a job unless it pays 25.00 hour. My wife told me if i don't like it i can leave and said her son comes first. i am so hurt over this

    he is now in charge of our home

    • Fedup2
      This is truly the reason I never remarried into a blended family, nor wished to bring anyone into my home. I have enough drama with my own kids.. no room for more drama in my life. It is very hard to have stepchildren when they are younger or inMore college. When you say he's in charge, you are probably correct.
  • Mom on the edge
    I have a big problem with my daughter. She is 26, married with 2 kids one of which was conceived purposely while living with us with her husband unemployed. When they moved in there was drama from the start because I wanted her to wait one day longer than sheMore wanted to. We've bent over backwards for them and all we get is used and disrepected. Any time we complained about them not paying rent and living like slobs, there would be a big fight, they'd pay rent for a few weeks or a month, but then something would happen and they couldn't afford it and that would be it. The rooms they occupied in our home were filthy, looking like it belonged on an episode of Hoarders with literal garbage everywhere and a smell that would knock your socks off. This has gone on for three years. In that time they've gotten money enough from their tax refund to move out 3x. Something always prevented it. Either they didn't have an income or they needed a place that allowed pets or they didn't have a vehicle. They would use my car with impunity as if it were their own the times they didn't have one. They allowed their pets to reproduce so they ended up with more than a landlord would allow. Claiming not to be able to afford to get them spayed and neutered. We arranged for them to get a mobile home, but it needed work to move in. They were supposed to use their tax refund to pay for the work and some of it did, but not nearly enough and it's still not in move in condition and none of their regular income goes toward making it so. With the most recent time we stood up for ourselves they took the kids and left, moving in with her husband's parents. They've been gone a month. She wants to come back. His parents apt is much smaller than the house we own and I'm sure it's not nearly as comfortable. She wants me to tell me it's ok for her to move back but I just can't. I told her I didn't make her leave. Her inability to be a mature, responsible adult who could treat us and our home with respect did. She makes all these promises that she'll pay x amount in rent but history shows that won't last long and I just don't believe her. When I tell her in afraid things will just go back to how they were, she threatens me with losing her and the children, which I resent because I know it's manipulative and immature. I wish I had a 3rd party to tell her what she's doing is wrong because she's not listening to be at all.
  • V

    What to do about a son that moved back in due to divorce and him paying child support. Our goal was once he paid off his child support he would then move out and get his own place.

    Well his child support is paid off.

     So what does he do? Goes out and buys a $27,000.00 car and his car payments are $650.00 a month! So now he can not afford an apartment due to income to debt ratio is too high. He can not afford that car on his low income! Why any bank would give  him a car loan like that I do not know?  I feel He is using this an excuse to self sabotage any effort to move out/. He only pays 200.00 a month room and board and some times forgets to pay it.

    • RebeccaW_ParentalSupport

      @V 

      I hear you.  It can be very frustrating when you agree

      to have your adult child move back in to help him out, and now he is reluctant

      to leave.  Something to keep in mind is that if your son is comfortable

      with the way things are going, he’s probably not going to be motivated to

      change his current living situation and move out.  While you can’t “make”

      him change, you do have the power to make him uncomfortable, using the things

      you provide to him.  If you want your son to leave, I encourage you to

      talk with him, and develop a plan with a set moving deadline.  It could be

      helpful to write this down in a https://www.empoweringparents.com/article/ground-rules-for-living-with-an-adult-child-plus-free-living-agreement/ as well.  Please let us know if you have any additional

      questions; take care.

  • Chris
    I am married to an older woman with 2 adult children that live at home, 21 & 23. Her 23 year old daughter has 2 kids herself living here also. She does not really watch her children because she is always on the phone. Neither is is going to collegeMore and the son has never really worked and complains about any type of work. They dont go out with friends. Instead they want to hang around with their mom. Then get mad if they arent invited or involved in our activities. Out of all the people we hang around i am the youngest and I'm 32. Everone else is over 40. My wife does not pressure her children to do anything and tends to hold their hands instead of letting them grow up. As a parent she gives them advice and they never listen to it but she still saves them. I get that you want to protect your children but what she does is not what i believe in. I gave her my plans for the near future and they did not involve her children. I think ultimately that if she cannot let them go or pressure them to move out and move on we will be divorced.
  • Toots56
    I have an adult daughter who has been out of the home for over 10 years now, she has kind of moved back home due to not having anywhere to live at the moment, she has just started a part time job working for me, and plans to move intoMore share accommodation.  My issue is she is really hard to pin down and has left her clothes here saying she will sleep herebut staying where knows, I am wanting to try and sit her down to set some guidelines down as there are clothes everywhere and I am feeling quite frustrated with the whole thing.  Whilst I want to help her I am wanting to set some guidelines any assistance greatly appreciated.
    • RebeccaW_ParentalSupport

      Toots56 

      Setting guidelines and boundaries when an adult child moves

      back home is something that we often recommend, so it sounds like you are on

      the right track.  At this point, it could be useful to schedule a time

      with your daughter to talk about your expectations for her behavior while she

      is staying at your home, or until she moves into a place of her own.  You

      might also consider writing up a living agreement with your daughter to

      summarize your conversation.  We have a template available to download for

      free, which you can find by clicking https://www.empoweringparents.com/article/ground-rules-for-living-with-an-adult-child-plus-free-living-agreement/. 

      Thank you for writing in; please let us know if you have any additional

      questions.

      • Mom on the edge
        What happens when the rules you both agree to just get ignored out followed for a token amount of time and then stopped?
        • RebeccaW_ParentalSupport

          @Mom on the edge 

          Thank you for your question.  When you are creating

          rules, we also recommend coming up with consequences you can use if the rules

          are not being followed.  After all, rules without accountability tend to

          be ineffective. Then, if your child ignores or stops following the rules, you

          can implement the consequences you outlined earlier.  Please let us know

          if you have additional questions; take care.

    • vls123

      Toots56  so - you already have the answer - set guidelines down - tell her if she wants to stay there or not, she still has got to keep up with the neatness - you are no longer the mother who picks up after her - she is an adult and if she doesn't want to behave like one or treat others appropriately and just do whatever she wants, then she can now, as of today, right now, find her own place to live. She is living in your house as an adult not a child to have "mom" pick up after her and/or just put up with whatever mess she wants to leave. Read the other stories here and see what happens if you do not put your foot down. 

      The write in from Mark below - not sure what all was going on there but his parents put their foot down and he resented it and said he is no longer speaking to them - he said due to the fact that he was NOT taking advantage. Perhaps they went overboard when they didn't have to but not sure what all was going on there - so stay in balance and be respectful and expect the same from your daughter.

  • Exhausted GA

    My husband and I have been together 11 years (married 8).I am from the west coast, he is from the south. He had 3 girls (9,8&7) I had 2 boys (7&5). We have raised them all together with little assistance from their respective other parents.  The boys saw their father once 10 years ago; the girls' mother has been a constant trial and even assaulted me with little legal consequences about 7 years ago. 5 years ago, she was arrested and sent back to prison (when I first came out here, she had been in prison for 3 years-she was released on parole 3 months after my boys and I arrived).

    Our oldest graduated in 2013, started working at the same office as me, bought her own car, and moved out 14 months after graduation.  2014, our next daughter got a job, got into an argument with her dad and I and moved out and into the home of her boyfriend and his parents.  It's now a year later, and she's home having quit her job, kicked out by her boyfriend,  and suicidal...she's been home 3 months and is no closer to having a job now as she was when she asked to come home. 

    This year, our youngest daughter and oldest son graduated. Within the first month after graduation,  they were both working.  

    Over the last 9 months, my husband and I have increasingly become more distant and we argue constantly.  He's more old school and tends to be more disciplinary while I am more introverted and understanding.  Coddling actually,  but not wanting to be. 

    Our oldest daughter has a strained relationship with us because we expressed our distaste with her boyfriend and our perception of his using her. Also, their mother is set for parole this month as well. 

    Our most horrible arguments stem from our kids and the issues plaguing everyone who's adult children live at home; and a very clear us and them mentality seems to be taking hold.  My husband feels neglected and disrespected by the boys and myself and I feel overwhelmed and exhausted by the constant conflict and the tearing apart that seems to be occurring.  

    I've always been able to piece us all back together no matter the issue,  but more and more often I'm just feeling torn and guilty that I understand all the sides but can't commit to anything or anyone and I feel like I'm betraying them all.

    Divorce feels eminent and when I try to talk to any of them I get the distinct feeling none of them understand what I'm trying to say and I'm actually pushing all of them further away! I could really use some guidance and advice...

    • RebeccaW_ParentalSupport

      Exhausted GA  

      I can hear how much this situation is weighing on you, and

      I’m glad that you are reaching out for support.  https://www.empoweringparents.com/article/my-blended-family-wont-blend-help-part-i-how-you-and-your-spouse-can-get-on-the-same-page/ are quite common in most families, and they can become even

      more troublesome when blended families and adult children are involved. 

      One first step might be to talk with your husband privately during a calm time

      to try to find some common ground.  Sometimes, it can be useful to involve

      a neutral third party, such as a marriage/family therapist, to help you figure

      out the most effective next steps.  For assistance locating these and

      other supports in your community, try contacting the http://www.211.org/ at 1-800-273-6222.  I

      recognize how difficult this must be for you and your entire family, and I wish

      you all the best as you move forward.  Take care.

  • MeeMoe1
    Mae Mae WHY didn't you insist that the kittens be neutered and spayed?
  • LastNerve
    Help! My daughter is 24. She has always been my hard to deal with child who had to argue with me..disrespect me...never followed the rules every chance she could. At 17 she had a baby. She wasn't ready, wasn't mature..but we gave her a chance. It didn't work outMore with the father and the responsibility kind of fell on us. Nothing was good enough..she needed more, wanted more. Blamed us for her being jobless because we wouldn't buy her a car and I wouldn't watch the baby. By the way..we were pregnant together and her sister is 3 months younger than my granddaughter. My hands were full and I had 2 others to raise. I can't tell you how many times we moved her back and forth because she couldn't/wouldn't pay her bills. She finally met another man and had another baby. I thought we were home free...I was wrong. They are broken up and she is again under our roof with my 2 grandbabies. I cook...clean...I give up my van when she needs it..buy food..watch the kids. She works now but does NOT pay anything. She shops a lot....demands my van...gives me the "oh well" attitude when I say I need it....she used my phone for long time and it's beat up and scratched...she's loud...bad language. She uses every moment off work to play XBox. She sits there for hours. She eats and stores dishes in her room then brings them to me. I wash by hand and I have found dishes with food on them in my dish water. Takes people's things..won't lift a finger to clean because she says her job is at work not home and her days off are hers. Trashes the bathrooms...throws cigarette butts on the ground outside...MESSES MESSES MESSES! My list can go on for days. I'm on Zoloft now...don't know if it's working. Found out I'm extremely anemic so I get tired and weak fast so can't keep up with this house like id like right now. Taking high dose of iron but still find myself laying down here and there which just leaves me with anxiety because I'm not occupied and left to think of all the problems. My 9 year old son doesnt like her (his own sister)and they fight like crazy. He doesn't back down, she doesn't back down I don't know what to do. I'm a good mom, but I feel my life isn't going how I want. I thought about getting a job but she has me tied down making me watch the kids and taking my van. The rest of the family doesn't fancy her because of her ways. She has little friends. If we kick her out she will be alone. But her dad and I plus her 3 siblings can't do it much longer. Im sorry im rambling. Im just lost..Any advise?
    • RebeccaW_ParentalSupport

      @LastNerve 

      I’m sorry to hear about the trouble you are having with your

      daughter.  It can be very difficult when you are working hard and making

      sacrifices to help your child, yet she appears to take your help for granted

      and does not contribute to the household.  The truth is, your daughter is

      an adult, and as such, anything you decide to give her is considered a

      privilege for her and a choice for you.  This includes things like a place

      to live, food to eat, a phone, a vehicle, internet access, and so on.  At

      this point, it could be useful to determine some rules and expectations for her

      behavior while she is living in your home, and what privileges you are willing

      to enforce to hold her accountable for her behavior.  Once you have come

      to this decision, it could be useful https://www.empoweringparents.com/article/ground-rules-for-living-with-an-adult-child-plus-free-living-agreement/ which outlines all of this.  I understand

      how challenging this must be for you right now, and I wish you and your family

      all the best moving forward.

      • mervgrif1
        Some of your problems sound similar to mine except our 27 year old mechanical engineer son stopped working one year after acquiring a very well paying job and moved back home ...roommate asked us to get him as his behavior was so odd. Scitzophrenic, bipolar...ok and he won't get helpMore take meds etc. My husband his father was so angry last summer he called the police on him and he was incarcerated for four months. Part of his release required him to move into a halfway house which lasted about 10 days then he left and came home because he got bed bugs. He constantly takes his car engine apart and leaks black oil on our driveway, touches cabinets in our kitchen with his black greasy hands, borrows our things and forgets where he has put them. Doesn't listen to us about seeking help and of course he pays no rent, no food, no utilities. I am at the point where I want to take time off work and get a restraining order and forget I even had a son. Last night whole we were at our daughters the pound called because our son just left the gate open so our two dogs could get out on the street. He forgets to close cabinets when he gets a glass out of the kitchen cupboard, never ever turns off a light, the list goes on and on. We are bring screwed and can't even claim the thousands of dollars we have spent and claim him as a dependent on our income tax. He has a part time job and does bids for a solar company but has no set schedule. He does have a girlfriend who also has mental illness and hasn't become a father. I don know how we are going to age gracefully and retire.
    • vls123
      @LastNerve - your other children are watching how you handle this - you are letting an adult - your daughter - in control of your life and the younger children are watching and learning - she will continue to do whatever she wants because you are letting her and she willMore never change because she doesn't have too
  • Snoopy21
    I married two years ago, and shortly after my wife's son and girlfriend ask to move in for 1 month before moving out of state. Now 2 years and a baby later they are still here. Now it doesn't even look like my house anymore, with toys and baby clothesMore all through the house. I hate coming home after 11 hour day at work and having to clean up after them. Son is a delivery driver and gf doesn't work. Feels like I always have to entertain them. Doesn't seem they ever want to better their situation.
    • vls123
      Snoopy21    either do something to change this situation or nothing and leave it the way it is
  • Guest 47
    Have an adult child with their own child move in and after 9 months they have no job and not even in college it is hard to handle and I am at a loss of what to do. They are rude and disrespectful and don't help with anything. IMore want the best for them Suggestions??
    • Marissa EP

      Guest 47 

      Living with an adult child can certainly present some

      challenges, and even more so when your child has a child. We would suggest

      setting up a https://www.empoweringparents.com/article/ground-rules-for-living-with-an-adult-child-plus-free-living-agreement/ with your son or daughter outlining some basic rules and

      expectations you have of them while living in your home. For some families, it

      may also be helpful to set limits on the length of stay in your home, and https://www.empoweringparents.com/article/failure-to-launch-part-3-six-steps-to-help-your-adult-child-move-out/ to their

      own place. For additional tips, I encourage you to read our https://www.empoweringparents.com/article/failure-to-launch-part-1-why-so-many-adult-kids-still-live-with-their-parents/ 3-part series on Empowering Parents. Best of luck to you and your

      family and check back to let us know how

      it’s going.

  • Sin of kids

    Adult children my daughter is 22 College living at home no job total pig my son finished 3 years of college has a job gives no money does no cleaning and he moved his girlfriend in and she's a hoarder filled up my husband's garage my husband and I are getting a divorce 29 years down the toilet because of our kids

    And they never left home I don't think I have a problem with them being here but my husband is making me choose between them and him

  • Truelysophia
    I have 3 adult sons, my middle son who is 22 has so much hate, anger, and entitlement. When he was a teenager I had so much anxiety, his disrespect towards me caused me anger and depression. He feels entitled and if things are not going his wayMore he becomes angry and negative. We get into daily arguement and this is not who I am!!! He recently lived with my parents and was doing better but still not following their rules. He had more respect for them....he recently got kicked out their house and now he's back in mine. I don't know how to let go, I sometimes feel verbally abused. I feel obligated to help him even at the stake of my own sanity. Before he moved back so much peace, it was only me and my 18 year old son who recently graduated. His own brothers will tell me to kick him out. I'm so scared for him and feel he is so lost but I can't get through to him. I'm feeling things will never change and he's only been back 2 days. I want to be happy and see my son happy. How do I get through to him without losing him?? And how do I stay strong through this?
    • vls123
      Truelysophia   you've done everything you possibly could so accept that first and know things are out of your hands
    • RebeccaW_ParentalSupport

      Truelysophia 

      I hear you.  It can be so challenging when you want to

      help your child, and at the same time, you are being subjected to his anger and

      verbal abuse.  It can be helpful to remind yourself that your son is now

      an adult, and so, anything you choose to provide to him (including a place to

      live) is considered a privilege.  While I understand your desire to see

      your son happy, I also encourage you to keep in mind that, in general, people

      do not tend to change unless they are uncomfortable or unhappy with their

      current circumstances.  At this point, it could be useful to determine

      what your rules for your son will be while he is living in your house, and how

      you will enforce those rules if he does not follow them.  I also recommend

      writing up those expectations, such as in a https://www.empoweringparents.com/article/ground-rules-for-living-with-an-adult-child-plus-free-living-agreement/.  I recognize how difficult this must be for you, and so I

      hope that you are also taking steps to take care of yourself and get the

      support you need to get through this time.  If you are interested in

      seeking out more structured supports in your community, such as counseling or a

      support group, I encourage you to contact the http://www.211.org/ at 1-800-273-6222.  211 is a service which connects people

      with resources in their local area.  Please be sure to write back and let

      us know how things are going for you and your family.  Take care.

      • Truelysophia
        Thank you for your advice and quick response. I'll keep you posted, thanks again :)
  • Avanda212
    We have a 19 yo who dropped out of college that is technically living here but we hardly see her anymore. She comes in to get clothes every once in a while. She doesn't want to answer to us anymore won't return texts or calls. We have tried everything toMore get through to her, even setting up counseling. She went once but doesn't think she needs is. My husband and I are are struggling to decide whether or not to pack up her things and store them so that our teenage son can now have her room instead of sharing with his brother. My husband thinks this will push her away further but I think since she doesn't use her room anyway we might as well put it to use. I would never kick her out and she is welcome to come home when she is ready but her room shouldn't be held indefinitely until then. I know she is safe and staying with friends. As far as I know she is working. We told her since she quit school she is now responsible for her own bills (car, insurance, phone) but since she hasn't paid any bills as of now, (5 months) we have taken the car and are shutting off the phone at the end of this month. She has had several warnings and still hasn't paid anything. I don't want to alienate her, I do want her to come home but at this point I'm at a loss. I'm trying to give her space but I don't want to lose her in the meantime. Is there anything else we should be doing?
    • RebeccaW_ParentalSupport

      @Avanda212 

      Many parents of young adults find themselves in a similar

      situation: trying to give their child space and respecting their independence,

      while also trying to maintain boundaries and house rules.  It can be a

      tricky balance at times, and you are not alone.  Ultimately, because your

      daughter is an adult, anything you choose to provide to her is considered a

      privilege, which includes having a room to stay in, or at least to store her

      belongings.  Sometimes it can be helpful to think about what you would do

      if it were someone other than your daughter behaving this way, like a friend or

      a neighbor.  If a friend asked to stay with you, then was gone most of the

      time, and refused to talk with you and follow your rules, how would you

      respond? What would you do with your friend’s belongings?  I hope this has

      been helpful.  Please let us know if you have any additional questions.

  • guest
    We have been dealing with various issues with the adult children living in our home. We have finally managed to have them working now and are finding that they are spending their money on extras instead of saving to move out.   We have sat down and helped set up budgetsMore to help them save but then they do not live to the budget and never save.   I do not want to control them but want them to move out as soon as possible.  They make enough money if they lived to their income and saved what they do not pay me in rent.   What should I do next?   Should we just give them a 30 day notice since this has been a continual issue?
    • Darlene EP

      @guest 

      This a common issue for many

      parents who have  adult children living at home. I know it is not easy to

      be dealing with. One viable option would be to give them a 30 day notice

      whether they choose to save or not. Truthfully, taking advantage of the opportunity

      that they have to save right now is their choice to make. However, you do not

      have to allow them to stay in your home indefinitely because they have chosen

      not to save.  Another option some parents have found to be effective is to

      require that they pay rent and you can put the amount they pay or a portion of

      the amount into savings for them. Either way it is probably going to be helpful

      for everyone to have a set time in place where they have to move out. And

      again, if they choose not to prepare for it and save their money for their

      move, that is their problem to solve. I hope this helps to answer your

      question. Thank you for writing. In.

  • Mark
    I moved back in with my parents for a while after my surgery and all they did was constantly harass me about everything.  I am an engineer and an attorney with no student loans or any other debt of any kind whatsoever.  I had to do all the chores aroundMore the house while my next door neighbor's 17 year old son was "too good"  to mow the lawn, clean the house or anything, etc.  They always questioned me about coming and going, how many beers, etc.  They talked to me like I was so stupid, but I knew I was smarter.  I had passwords on all devices, all private social media settings, they could not find anything.  I also knew that they could not use self help to evict or throw you out the house, and I would have fought it legally if I had to.  Of course, I moved out, bought a house in ALL CASH which is more than they ever could have done, and just  got married.  I changed my phone number, and I hope I never see them again in this lifetime.
    • Fred

      Mark, I am somewhat confused, IF our son was like you say you were, I would be a VERY happy man.

      I wonder where all the drive, intelligence and independence came from ? were you adopted ? if not think again, what CAUSED your parents to act this way ? you did NOTHING wrong?

      OR were they trying to keep you `sharp' ............... what's neighbor's 17 year old son doing now ? washing cars ?

    • vls123
      @Mark    - you lived free with your parents and were able to buy a house in cash  - we had to have a job at age 16 and move out of the house upon graduation at 17 - there was no living at home back then - at allMore - unless you had a disability
    • heaven help mom
      Your parents helped you which is why you've been successful. There is no such thing as a self made man. Life will teach you some valuable lessons Sir that no University ever could...SAD
  • RB85
    My daughter is 21 and has a 3 month old baby. And they both live at home with me. She is still dating the father of the baby. Neither one of them has a job. When I found out she was pregnant I asked that she look for a placeMore to live because I have a small house and I didnt want to be put under the stress of being woke up by a baby all hours of the night. She moved out for 2 weeks but then was evicted when the baby was 3 days old for not paying rent. She doesn't help with any bills, housework. She smokes all my cigarettes, wants to drive my car every day with her boyfriend just driving around and wasting my gas. She takes my clothes, makeup etc and has now moved into my bed room and doesn't want to stay in her room because its too cold for the baby. I feel like she is trying to take over my entire life. I don't have anything that belongs to me and I don't have anywhere to go to relax or have any privacy. Now she has found out that she is pregnant again. I told her she has until this summer to find a place to live because I can't afford to support her and two children. Its just too much. She says she is going to leave asap and I won't have to worry about her anymore. She also says that she doesn't feel comfortable living with me anyway and she feels like I don't want her there because I complain about the baby crying. Baby has reflux, colic, exzema and cries all day and all night. Of course I'm going to complain. She is now saying that I'm a horrible person because what kind of person would ask her to leave with a 3,month old baby. And I'm not going to see my grand daughter again. She is extremely disrespectful. I have bought everything for this baby, bought my daughter maternity clothes, new clothes after the baby was born. And continue to support her. I don't think being unreasonable by asking her to find a place to live--3 months from now. I need advice to try to resolve the issue. Do I apologize for my " horrible" actions and sweep it under the rug or should I stand my ground and demand that she grow up and be a mom and support her own children.
    • paddikeller
      I will admit I am in the same situation. My daughter is 19 with a 2 year old she will jot even washer breakfast dishes before I get home from work. She has good days for a bit after I become so over whelmed and just cry. I found thisMore searching for an onling support group.
    • DeniseR_ParentalSupport

      @RB85

      You’re not alone. Many parents in your situation have shared

      similar concerns. It can be tough when your adult child who lives at home has

      children of her own and the idea of making them leave can be distressing. It is

      ok, however, to set that limit. Your daughter is an adult and her child is her

      responsibility. You have given her ample time to find another place to live and

      you’re not a bad parent for wanting your own space and privacy. We wish you the

      best of luck moving forward. Take care.

  • Nina50
    @nadine  I am facing same situation and at times I feel like I am going to get a heart attack...I need help to talk to someone...can someone suggest a person.  I loved this article and I feel I may also be doing something wrong....need guidance.
    • DeniseR_ParentalSupport

      Nina50

      I am so sorry to hear that your situation is causing you so

      much distress. The 211 Helpline can give you information on services and

      supports in your area, such as counselors, therapists, and support groups. You

      can reach this national referral service 24 hours a day by calling

      1-800-273-6222 or by visiting them online at http://www.211.org/.

      Good luck to you moving forward. Take care.

  • cmb823
    I am a single mother of a 29-year old son.  I retired after 26 years from the USAF in 2011 and am currently unemployed because I decided to utilize my GI Bill for school, which I just completed this past September.  I receive retirement pay + disability from the VA, I am very gratefulMore to be receiving both as it has allowed me to complete school, now however, since I am done I no longer receive the GI Bill money and recently my landlord raised the rent.  Anyhoo, my son left when he was 19 for a five year enlistment with the Navy and was stationed on the other side of the country.  While there, he had many behavior issues and often got into trouble.  He had been with the same girl for nearly seven years and finally got married in 2010 after he completed his enlistment and moved back east, and without him having a job... All the time they were together it was only after he was married that he decided to screw around and got caught and kicked out.  He came to stay with me (for a short time until they got stuff straighten out).  Well, that was over three years ago and now the girl who broke them up has been living with him in my basement.  I finally found a place (albeit renting) that I could set-up and decorate the way I like and now have lost my family room and my 55-inch tv.  It is so disgusting in there I am depressed every time I have to go into the room.  She had a rather large friend over who broke the toilet in the bathroom down there (seat and seals below) so the water was constantly running and besides the monthly water bill, the water was leaking and he just used rages to soak it up and not tell me, so my water bill grew to $50.00 more a month than normal and I couldn't understand why.  I even had the water company come out and they checked the connections outside.  They leave bags and bags of trash out on the back deck, which the wildlife have been getting into.  There's always garbage downstairs and they leave dirty dishes out down there for several days, then ultimately bring up a load right after I've just washed a sink full.  They both do horrible jobs washing the dishes and I ALWAYS have to rewash them if they do decide to do it.  My son has not driven his car in over a year and a half because he had tickets and the registration & inspection expired and he couldn't get the registration taken care of until the tickets were taken care of (I used to pay his ins as well, but stopped after this because the car sat in disrepair).  So now, he's got no license or vehicle and I've been driving him around ever since.  Not to mention, I used a chunk of my VA Comp back-pay money to pay off tickets for him in CA ($1300.00) and come to find out they weren't even the tickets that he needed cleared for his driving issues here.  He got a job at Starbuck's and she has a job at a doggie day care/boarding facility and of course they NEVER offer to pay for anything and I have to drive him around and that is wear and tear on my car.  When I can't pick him up or I'm late, he has a meltdown and it's because he thinks I am here to cart his butt around.  I am a sea of mixed emotions, mostly depression...  I have fibro and every day is different in how I feel and often I don't even feel like getting out of bed, but I have dogs, so I must.  His father lives out west and they do not have a good relationship.  Shortly after I had my son his father got another girl pregnant and so he has a younger half-sister, plus two half-brothers and five other kids that were adopted (I usually just call him "the donor" because that's all he's ever been).  My son has long had issues with the lack of interest by his father especially after he adopted a bunch of  kids over spending time with him.  So, I guess I've always given him more allowances because of this and now it is biting me in the butt with a child that is the way he is.  I have often thought that perhaps if I were permanently out of the picture my son would learn to grow up and be a productive member of society.  I am so disappointed with his behavior and lack of motivation to get his own place as well as getting the car situation straightened out, not to mention depression and am riddled with guilt that I have such resentment for him.  This is not how my retired years are supposed to be, I'm supposed to be enjoying life and doing things, but instead I am constantly worrying and full of anger.  I have begun to really hate living in this townhouse and want to finally buy my own place, but I DO NOT want them coming with me to ruin my new home (he's caused various property damage that I will have to have fixed prior to moving out), so I've delayed moving, now financially, I'm not in a good place. After having a conversation with him he thinks I'm going to co-sign an apartment rental application for him.  He's crazy!  Besides being a slob and not taking care of anything, his credit is crap and he owes so much money on medical bills that the collectors are the only ones that ever ring my home phone.  My apologies for such a lengthy post.  Thank you for taking the time to read any of this and have a great day!
    • JacintaNickerson
      cmb823 Hello, how are you I'm 37 and I have 4 children  19, 15, 11, 8. I totally understand what your going thru.  But I just wanted to say that with all the stress and depression gone!! now. I can truly say pray with your whole heart and have aMore conversation with god. Things will get better ! God Bless You!
    • bodyandsoul77

      Hi ,first let me say I know exactly what you're going through.I also am on disability ,for severe back problems ,ddd and fibro. My husband ,the father of my 3 girls ,died 9 years ago ,and to be totally honest ,I was like you in that I over compensated ,allowed the younger two to live here with me ,and their STILL here ,at 24 and 26

      for years they've encouraged me to meet someone else ,and eventually I did .and he moved into the home.

      I have ocd like tidy Ness and order ,and he is the same.both girls have become lazy and almost entitled ,again ,we have so much in common ,as mine have been ruling the roost ,hogging the tv/ satelite etc for way longer than I ought to have allowed.

      We reached breaking point just last week ,when my new partner ended up having a go(verbally) at the eldest for not helping me enough.things got very heated and he left ,after being "told" he wasn't wanted.

      The dilemma I'm facing is twofold,I know what I need to do in regards my girls ,but financially ,both are on the last run of courses and finding another place(we're in the uk) isn't cheap..I also really love my partner ,but he's losing patiemce..,I know ,who can blame him.

      I guess I replied to you as I understood what you're going through ,and also wanted to hear of others "woes",so to realise I'm not alone in this problem,

      I don't want to lose the relationship with them ,we've always been very close ,but neither do I want to jeapordise what I have with this man ,who proves and shows he really cares.

      I also hear your pain ,mental as well as physical.mine seems to be off the scales right now.nothing like stress to screw with body and mind.

      If you'd like ,please let me know how things go on ,and I'd like to do the same.best wishes and gentle hugs ,may you get that inner peace ,once and for all x

  • Ann223
    My husband died earlier this year and he has usually been the one to make sure the children are respectful and he would make sure they followed the rules. I have 3 girls and three boys, and a grandchild living with me. Two of the boys are 22 year oldMore twins who never help with chores around the house when I ask, they're either in their rooms playing video games, eating, and one of them has a 16 year old girlfriend who he has had miss school so she can be with him doing God knows what. Once, I even smelled cigarette smoke coming from the boys' bedroom! One has had a job before, but he got fired...from a fast food restaurant! They said he didn't do cleaning correctly. How does that even happen? I don't think they have any care for getting a job because they expect to get money and shelter from me for the rest of their lives. My daughters notice their behavior too. Two have tried giving advice but it didn't work. They can't even drive, in fact, the only reason one wants to drive is to take that 16 year old to places. She is only 16 and her dad for some reason allows this! He has even dropped her off many times before. My son won't even let me know where she lives. I have tried talking to them once, but they just disrespected me and walked away in the middle of me talking. A friend of mine told me I should test them by telling them to leave, and maybe then they'll behave like their age, but I haven't done so. Should I? I've cried countless times. I don't know what to do anymore.
  • nartmc
    My son is unemployed and is a very angery man (30).  I'm stuck its so complicated I could write a book.  I'm constantly critiized for how I spend my money.  My dogs, he doesnt like them.  i'm miseable.  He disrespects me and at times has caloled me names, Ive toldMore him that he can leave and I wish he would
    • Louise Diaz
      You know I have been going through the same things of what you're going through I just recently had a big blow up with my son . He has moved back home so many times but have recently brought another mouth for me to have to take care of andMore then my husband and I did the best we could do and we are now had them out of the house but he constantly causes to have extra money for cigarettes or gas or blah blah blah and tonight we had told him that we cannot help because of situations we were in got mad exploded and hung up left me feeling disappointed hurt because of all the stuff my husband and I have gone through with him help them several times money money money money help them get a car a truck we have done so much and again I am stuck with the same problem I don't know what to do
    • RebeccaW_ParentalSupport

      nartmc 

      Living with an adult child can be

      trying under the best of circumstances, and with name-calling and constant

      criticism, it’s understandable how you would feel stressed about your current

      situation with your son.  It’s normal to feel “stuck” without a lot of

      options when you are in a tough situation, especially one involving your

      child.  The truth is, though, that both of you are adults, and if the

      current arrangement isn’t working, you can make changes.  Ultimately, the

      choice of whether to allow your son to continue living in your home is yours to

      make.  If you decide to continue to let your son stay with you, you might

      consider writing up a http://www.empoweringparents.com/parenting-living-adult-children.php which outlines the expectations you have for his behavior while

      he is living in your home.  If you decide to have him leave, I recommend

      setting a date for him to move out which you are willing to enforce. 

      Also, some communities require that a formal eviction notice be served, so you

      might want to contact your local clerk of courts to get information about the

      process in your area.  I recognize that this is a tough situation, and I

      hope that you will write back and let us know how things are going.  Take

      care.

  • burned out nurse
    I am a nurse who works night shifts, and I have a working son, 21, and student daughter 20.  my husband and their father died 3 years ago, and I have been working steadily.  i ask my son to pay 250.00 a month to pay car insurance and cell phone.More  my daughter is a student and is not working right now, so i don't have her paying.  it seems to bounce between the two which one is hardest to get along with, and recently I posted rules for living in the house.  i sometimes feel the only value I have is to provide money and shelter.  recently they have taken to air their complaints with relatives.  i am a private person and have told them I do not like this behaviour.  I am tired and fed up and there are days I would love to boot them out the front door.  i don't think they will be ready to leave until they have no choice.
  • lombardi17

    I have two grow daughters.  My older daughter is married with two children and is obsessed with the fact I own my own business and do not have time to help with her children and I try to help her every weekend and sometimes after work.    She constantly argues with me that I do nothing for her.  I also have a twenty two year old that lives home and constantly has this sense of entitlement. She drives an expensive car we pay for along with college . She also gets $175.00 a week spending money and 

    $30.00 to do the laundry.  She is extremely disrespectful to me and calls me names. I am sick of both of them and need guidance.  

    . o

    • Darlene EP

      lombardi17 

      It sounds like you have been dealing with some challenging situations with your daughters. We hear from many parents who are experiencing similar issues and are looking for solutions just like you. The fact that both of your daughters are adults definitely changes how you approach the behaviors you describe. You are no longer responsible for them; they are responsible for themselves. Anything that you provide at this point is a privilege not a right. It is about establishing your boundaries and what you are willing to do and not do and making that clear to both of your daughters. They are not likely to be happy about it, but it will help to establish some clear boundaries.  It might be helpful to set up a mutual living agreement with your 22 year old. This helps to define what your expectations are and what will happen if they are not met. The article,  http://www.empoweringparents.com/parenting-your-adult-child-how-to-set-up-a-mutual-living-agreement.php, can help you get started. Another thing to keep in mind is your daughters can only argue with you if you are allowing them to. Avoid those power struggles by setting a limit and walking away. For more on that check out this http://www.empoweringparents.com/how-to-walk-away-from-a-fight-with-your-child.php. We hope this helpful. Please let us know if you have any other questions.

  • DeniseR_ParentalSupport

    @Worriedfriend
    It’s understandable you would be concerned for your friend.
    It can be difficult to watch someone we care for struggle. Since we are a
    website aimed at helping people who are in a direct parenting role, we are
    limited in the coaching or advice we can offer you in your specific situation.
    AsMore much as you may want your friend to make a different choice in terms of the
    support s/he offers his/her children, and, as much as it may seem as though
    your friend wants this as well, only your friend can decide when s/he is ready
    to have the children move out. Keep in mind,
    many people don’t change until the situation they are in becomes too
    uncomfortable to continue. From what you have written, it sounds like you have
    been a great support for your friend during the challenges s/he is facing with
    his/her adult children. I’m sure that in itself is a big help. I would encourage you to continue to offer that support
    and friendship as s/he works through this transition with his/her children. We
    appreciate you writing in and wish everyone the best of luck moving forward.
    Take care.

  • edwartfruitman

    Unemployment is causing a lot of problems to the present
    generation because some of them are ending up with wrong qualifications that
    have no or very less demand. They need to be very careful about the field they
    choose so they don`t rely on their parent and can stand on their own feet.

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