Just feeling down tonight... difficult child is *home* again and I suspect up to his old tricks. Thinly veiled contempt underneath nearly every word, speaking in well modulated tones, not offering anything, short answers to mundane conversation attempts...bristling when dad asks "when will you be home?"... out every night, awakening us at 1 or 2 in the morning when the alarm beeps when he returns...once again the strange, brusquely polite house guest who just happens to be our son. He is working when his boss has work, sleeping when he is not out. I haven't seen him altered, I haven't found any evidence but that old familiar feeling of nauseous dread is back in the pit of my stomach. I am not liking where I sense this is heading and I am doing my best to provide a roof over his head, pleasant interactions and nothing more. I'd love to sit him down and try to woo answers out of him; but as we all know - those wooed answers are usually lies or half truths. I wish I could be the PARENT and request answers, but that didn't work out so well the last 2 times we tried. And I can't go through him storming out with all of his belongings again. And I suspect that's where we are headed. And I hate the idea that I may again be placating him = handing him the power in the relationship. I'm not going out of my way to do much for him - I do his laundry*, make dinner, stock the fridge and keep the roof over his head. He rarely helps out other than clearing the table or doing the bare minimum when H asks for help with something. We haven't given him any spending money and his car use is severely limited. (H let him use it tonight but told him to have it back by midnight, I think it was h's novel attempt to get him home at a decent hour, difficult child dropped it off at 9:00pm, he is "headed downtown" and "doesn't know" when he will be back...ugh. Maybe I am reading too much into it, but I suspect he brought it back EARLY to prove a point.) When I first started posting here in Aug '11, I thought that this "WHATEVER" would come to a climax of sort and go one way or the other or at least be more clear within a matter of months. We are approaching 18 months of the same dance and no resolution. And from what I read here, I could be dancing this dance for years. (And when you are a mom, leaving the dance hall is NEVER a real possibility. You are always there in your heart, even if its just worry; Know what I mean??) He told us that he's decided he is going back to college town apt this week - Thursday thru Sunday - may even stop to visit pc18 on Saturday (UGH). Maybe I am hormonal or overtired or blue, but I am just WEARY. I felt that his statement was another attempt to SHOW US he will come and go as he pleases. WHICH IS OK by me...I actually felt RELIEF that he wouldn't be here. I feel like he never went thru that 14-16 yo rebel phase of wanting to "make his OWN decisions" and this is some sort of regressive posturing. School? He claims he is making enough money to pay his back tuition, he will get a student loan and register for Semester 2. (still on account hold) I asked when his 2nd tuition installment would be due - if it would be after mid terms. He wasn't sure, but I did tell him we would pay the 2nd installment directly to the school *IF* he had a C+ average on his mid term transcript. He did seem thankful. Of course, that was Saturday...today he is back to being pleasant with- a sprinkling of contempt. At least in my read of it. (weary, hormonal, etc...) Told us he has his schedule set - Organic Chemistry, Spanish 301, etc - an extra heavy load; "he can handle it" . *Snort* been there done that, he's claimed this on 9/2011, on 1/2012, again on 9/2012 and here we go for 1/2013. He only actually enrolled 9/2011 and he dropped out mid semester. And hasn't gone back. The cynic in me wants to point that out. And the optimist in me wants to jump in and offer to pay his back tuition, and his 1st installment *IF ONLY* it meant that he would enroll. BUT I DID NOT DO EITHER. YAY ME. He knows if he asked - we WOULD. But he hasn't asked, and I won't offer. If his goal was an education; he could easily find a way. I suspect his goal is to save face. The boy doesn't have a shred of humility. And lest you think I am rambling in vain - I think I just realized what bothers me the most. The complete LACK of humility.Not even a soupcon of humble pie. He is safe, keeping up appearances, working, in touch with us, and has a bed to sleep in. We have (momentary?) peace. I will let that be enough for now. I don't know what else to do. (*and I do his laundry only because I DO NOT SHARE MY WASHER AND DRYER and his stuff combines into PC15's laundry, no extra loads) Thanks for listening.