Dear Friends, Our oldest difficult child (JT) is 19 (almost 20), and the past year since he graduated from high school has been so difficult with him. He graduated from HS with honors and a 3.4 GPA. He never studied and scored a 25 on the ACT. His heart was set on becoming a high school teacher, and he enrolled at a university several hours away. This was all his idea and goal. Of course, we worried how he would handle himself away from home given his difficulties with impulse control, ADHD, oppositional behavior, and general lack of self regulation. We've managed to help him stay accountable and responsible at home with us over the years. Unfortunately, things have not been working out. Here is a chronology of events: Went to a party with his sports team days before the first semester started and drank for the first time (too much), got sick in the dorms, and then was reported for underage drinking. He received a fine and required class, along with points on his drivers license. He claimed he thought he was drinking Gator Ade, and that he didn't know the Gator Ade had been mixed with alcohol. I don't believe him. JT wanted a moped for getting around campus and the area, although it wasn't really needed. We agreed, as long as he promised to wear a helmet. The first time we visited him, we found him speeding on the moped without a helmet. He gave us his "reasons" why he didn't need to wear a helmet, despite his earlier promises. Semester 1 - He failed a class the first semester, and performed poorly to average in the other classes. He was put on academic probation, but didn't share that with us. He admitted he skipped classes and stayed up all night watching movies and promised to perform better the next semester. We were paying for the majority of his expenses. He was kicked off the sports team. Semester 2 - He failed another class and performed poorly in the rest. He decided to get a job the week of final exams, though we advised him to wait until after the semester ended. He didn't improve off of academic probation and was kicked out of summer housing and the following possible semester (this fall). He blamed the teachers for being stupid and the classes for being irrelevant. He also got mono and stopped attending classes. This summer, he decided to change his major to Fire Medic, which is fine with us, and he signed up for the pre-requisite EMT - Basic course. Because difficult child failed to submit his immunizations in time for the clinicals, he failed the EMT class. We paid for that too ($800). Of course, JT blamed the instructor and everybody and everything else but him. Since he was kicked out of summer housing, he moved to an apartment of his own. We agreed to help, but required that he get a full-time job. He got a $10/hr apt maintenance job with no benefits. He started paying for some of his own expenses. Then, he injured himself on the job with a hammer and collected workers comp for the injury from his employer. Suddenly, JT seemed obsessed with getting a different truck. He spent a great deal of time complaining about the truck we had given him a couple of years ago (cost $6,000 and was the model he wanted). Though this was hurtful to us because it was a strain to pay for and we hoped he would like it, he took every opportunity to complain about it. To get instant cash to get a different truck, JT decided to sign up for the National Guard (sign-on bonus). The recruiter told him to lie about his ADHD diagnosis and current stimulant medication usage. We told JT that it is a crime to lie on entrance to the military, but he didn't care and said he would do whatever it took if he had to. We reported the situation to a superior, and the recruiter was disciplined. With the military off the table, JT traded his truck for a 20+ year-old piece of junk truck, which he claims is SO much better than the one we had given him. In the past week, it has leaked transmission fluid and oil on our driveway, and it has broken down on a county road. Of course, JT needs us to pay the bill for the part. We're keeping track so he has to pay us back eventually. He moved out of the first apartment into another one, and only lasted weeks there when he had another accident - tripping over a floor mat and crashing through the glass doors of the apartment building on his way to a fire call (he was on the volunteer fire dept.). He needed surgery on his hand, and again, he collected workers comp (to the tune of twice his usual hourly rate) from the fire department for over a month. He didn't work, but took a week-long trip to Montana with his friends during that time. After recovering, his employer cut back his hours too much, so he asked if he could come home to get back on his feet and retake an EMT class locally. We agreed, with the condition that he live by our household expectations and that he either be successfully attending college or working toward independence by getting a full-time, decent, reliable job. We purchased him the textbook and helped get him signed up for class. Well, difficult child was home less than one week and: There has been no time spent studying for the EMT class, despite the fact that we worked hard to get him in at the last minute. He went for a welding job test, and despite boasting about his skills to the high heavens, he failed it miserably. He has never been trained in tig welding, but he has some high school welding experience. But, he is grandiose about his grand abilities (not in touch with reality). We require that he leave his lighters (supposedly used for mechanical purposes) and knives in his truck, locked because of our younger difficult child who has an autism disorder. JT refuses to do that, and there were numerous lighters in the laundry room, along with cigarettes. We don't allow smoking on our property either. Of course, JT claims the cigarettes we found in his truck and pants pockets were someone else's. We don't smoke, and he promised he never would either. Right! I had loaned him my laptop to use for his classes, and I found porn on it. He was accessing porn and also Net Flix in the middle of the night - 3 - 4 a.m., again, after being told he needed to sleep on a normal schedule. He called me ignorant and said that he and his friends and his friends' parents call me a Nazi. He jammed up the washing machine after hastily throwing in 10 pairs of jeans in one load, after I called on my way home from work, and he realized I was coming home sooner than expected. He lied that the washer had broken down in the morning and had miraculously started working again right before I came home. Yeah right! Confronted about this, he said he would do better the next day, but he repeated the same thing. I found him just getting up at 2 p.m., and then, after he mowed the lawn, he laid down on the couch to watch TV with his very dirty clothes on (another requirement I have is to stay clean in the house, especially on the furniture). He argued that he wasn't dirty, despite the fact that fresh black dirt covered the entire knee areas of both pant legs. He continued his habit of staying up all night and sleeping most of the day, despite the fact that he had jobs to do and was told he needed to get up by 8 a.m., as if he were going to work. This brings us to the present time. We have listed our expectations for living with us in writing, and we shared with JT that he can either live by those expectations while we help him as he successfully works toward an education or achieves gainful employment or he can find a more independent living situation. We think it is best if he learns to respect the household rules and consistently pursues a goal with our support, because we just don't see any good outcomes of him living on his own. He has no job and no ability to take classes on his own. JT has chosen to leave and live with his friend and his friend's mother several hours away. He was very upset that we will no longer pay for his cell phone or allow him wi-fi access due to his porn use in our home. He also claims we didn't give him enough time to adjust to our expectations since coming home from his failed year at college and failed summer "working" on workers comp. No apologies, no remorse, no truth, and no conscience. Thousands and thousands of dollars for college that he wasted, poor lifestyle choices, lies, anger and verbal abuse toward us, no care for his younger brother, and the list goes on and on. He does not care about us at all. He uses us, and his biggest concern at the moment is his cell phone and money. I read an article lately about sociopaths, and JT has almost all of the traits. No wonder he can't comprehend the rights of other people or empathize with other people's feelings. I understand from what I've read that sociopaths do not change. I feel hopeless and completely drained physically, financially, and emotionally. We have spent so much time trying to help and rescue this person, and yet, it's as though he has been a train on a track all of this time, with no other possible path. I am depressed and yet, strangely relieved that finally, it's time for JT's problems to be JT's problems and not ours. I hope there is peace ahead for us in our home. I can't live like this any more.