25 yr old son living at home, lies, steals, sneaks and cant keep a job

Discussion in 'Substance Abuse' started by TammyL, Apr 12, 2016.

  1. TammyL

    TammyL New Member

    So my husband and I have been married for 27 years. I have high blood pressure and my husband is borderline.
    We have a 25 yr old son that we are at wits end with and do not know which way to turn.
    He has 2 children, not with either mom.
    He is on probation for stealing from his one employer (still has fines he has to pay on). Cant keep a job. Will lie right to your face and even when confronted with facts and proof and will still try to make it like you are the one lying. Will steal out of my purse or wallets.
    has a seizure disorder and will skip appointments and tests. Will lie and say all went well until doctors call a couple days later and tell you he was not there.
    Last summer he decided to move out with a friend. After living with his buddy for a couple months, he called and asked about moving home. I told him, No you wanted to move out and your are 24, time for you to grow up and figure things out ( of course he lost his job again). So not being stupid, he went to his 80 some year old grandparents to see if he could move in there. Now they are no in the best of health. We then decided that instead of him putting them through all the drama and games he plays at their age that he was to move back in.
    He finally got a job, but was terminated for stealing, this when he went on probation.
    Finally got a job 2 weeks ago. Just yesterday, he was to start work at 6 am, he got up left for work at 5:20, we are thinking wow he is finally growing up, texts me on lunch that work is going good. Not thinking anything of it until I get home at 5:30. He is not home (which he has to take his seizures medications at this time) and find a message from his work that was left at 8:30 that morning, that he needs to call about his employment. Well I am not stupid, so when he finally got home at 10 at night, we said there is a message on the machine for him, he played it and then looks right at us and says "hmmm wonder why they didn't talked to me at work today". after a half hour of talking to him about it, he finally admitted he did not go into work, then half hour later, he says " yeh I did a no call no show" Uhhh wonder why they ended your employment. Now this has been the same MO for at least 4 yrs on every job he has had.
    He walks around like everyone owes him something. And doesn't care about anyone other than his own needs.
    Now we are at wits end and don't know what to do. We are actually starting couples counseling, not for our married but to help deal with all he has and is putting us through over the years.
    Any advice on what to do. Yes I know "thro him out" but how can you when he will run to 80 yr old grandparents. Cant let him put them through what he does to us.
  2. ForeverSpring

    ForeverSpring Well-Known Member

    He is using drugs? That is usually why they steal, even when they know theyll be arrested. The addiction comes first.

    Anyone else in your home who could be impacted by this young man? Siblings? Fed up spouse?

    I say that if you feel you need to put up with his dangerous behavior and nobody else lives with you, that is your choice. If you have younger kids at home, I personally feel you have an obligation to make their home safe.

    Remember that your parents, unless with dementia, have the power to tell him no. If they don't, after you warned them, in my opinion that is their choice. Likely he wouldn't last long there.

    I think your son has a drug problem, whether or not you have seen it. It is up to you what you do about it and why, but in my opinion he won't learn a thing if he isnt allowed the consequences of his behavior. He is already 25 and not working with a record. He needs to be a man, which he wont do if you rescue him from his bad behavior...easier said than done and I know you worry about your parents...but...again...they can and should say no.

    I am so sorry for your pain. Please remrmber to take care of yourself and your own health too. These are not the kinds of adults who will care for us if OUR health fails so we need to make sure they do NOT destroy us. Do you see a therapist for your own needs?
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2016
  3. TammyL

    TammyL New Member

    My husband and i have made the decision that we are going to be getting counseling to deal with all the issues our son is giving us. Our marriage is strong but we feel we need help to deal with the stress .
    No there are other children. He is our only child. So where did we go wrong.
    As far as drugs, we have no clue what is going on with him in that sense.
    We tried to talk to his grandparents and have been told, sooner then putting him in the street they will take him in but at their age, it would really jeopardize their health.
  4. TammyL

    TammyL New Member

    we would like to have him sent somewhere for help as we think he needs it but at 25 he has to enter something on his own. We cannot do it. He needs serious help.
  5. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member


    I hate to tell you this but... you had far less input into this than you can imagine.

    The most common major inputs into how our kids turn out (short of us being the source of significant neglect or abuse) are:
    1) genetics
    2) the school system
    3) peers

    If we are fortunate, we MIGHT come 4th.
  6. TammyL

    TammyL New Member

    thank you for the input, helps to know it is not something we did as parents raising him. But still don't know which way to turn now.
  7. New Leaf

    New Leaf Well-Known Member

    Hi TL and welcome to the forum, so sorry for your need to be here and your heartache. It is hard when our kids grow up and do not grow up. Especially with a health condition. Then it becomes extra hard. Then the whole thing about him imposing on his 80 year old grandparents. UGH.
    This is a good start for you both. A therapist will be able to guide you and share possible resources.

    I know that his grandparents are adults, and will do as they please, but there is also advocacy for the elderly. Perhaps when you go to the therapist he/she may have some ideas on this.

    Your health is at risk. Keeping a disrespectful, out of line, lying, thieving adult child at home is not an option. Believe me, I know, been there, done that. It is awful.

    PE forum has a good article on detachment, that will help strengthen you. You may even want to share it with the grandparents.

    If they refuse to listen and will take him in, that is on them, not you.
    It is not your responsibility to take in your adult son.
    You have raised him.
    He is not appreciative of your help.
    He is dragging you down a slippery slope with him.

    I know the frustration of this dear, stay with us and keep posting. You are not alone. There are many parents here who have experienced much the same. I am one of them.
    Do not despair there are answers, one of the biggest ones is to take care of YOU.

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  8. toughlovin

    toughlovin Well-Known Member

    The added worry of the grandparents adds a difficult layer to this difficult situation.
    However I agree with Leafy.... Assuming the grandparents are of sound mind they are adults and can make their own decisions. I think you could firmly tell them that he is 25, is not doing the things he should be doing, and is stealing from us and we are not willing to live like that anymore. We do not want or expect you to take him in but we understand that is your decision. If you choose to take him in, do not be surprised if he steals or takes advantage of you, and if he does that and you want to throw him out we will back you up.

    And like Leafy said there are protections for folks over 60 so if he moves in with them you might want to call elder services at some point and ask them to check in with your parents.

    This is hard situation, but letting him live with you while he is not holiding down a job and taking advantage of you will not help him grow up and be a responsible adult.

    And yeah this is absolutely not your fault. Got to let go of that one.
  9. RN0441

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

    TL - glad you found this forum. There is sound advice here.

    We had trouble with our son for five years, since he was 15. On and off drug use, failure to launch. We gave him an ultimatum to go to rehab or a shelter. He chose rehab and now is living in Florida (we are in Illinois) and working and actually seems to be growing as a person. He's our youngest, and it was VERY hard for us to do this. The hardest thing in the world and we learned that it doesn't mean we don't love him; it means we want him to be a responsible adult and it was never gonna happen with us around. I'm not saying that your son is using drugs but something is not right.

    As I learned on this forum "nothing changes if nothing changes". You have to change how you handle him because he's comfortable - he isn't going anywhere. A good therapist will help you see that. Good luck and keep us posted. As you can read here you are NOT ALONE!
  10. TammyL

    TammyL New Member

    wow I am so glad that I found this site....thank you everyone for all the advice and support. This is just what I need. I know my husband wants to go for counseling but I have felt that I have going this battle alone and he has been turning the other cheek. Finally my husband is seeing the light and is willing to do something.
    I will keep everyone updated on the progress and hopefully the counseling will really help my husband to see that making our son move out on his own is the right choice in making him "grow up" and become an adult.
  11. TammyL

    TammyL New Member

    Please don't anyone take me wrong, he is my son and I do love him very much but enough is enough.
    At his age we were married and raising him. We were responsible adults.
    He is acting like a child in an adult body
  12. RN0441

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

    TammyL - we get it.
  13. toughlovin

    toughlovin Well-Known Member

    Tammy..... Hopefully some joint counseling will help. When my husband and I got to the point where we had to kick my son out of the house (when he was 18) we did go to some joint counseling so that we would be on the same page. I have always been the tougher parent, and the kids could get away with a lot with my husband who just doesn't like the conflict. It really helped us get on the same page and my husband has been with me along the rest of our journey. We are currently in a situation where we are going to have to hold our ground with our son and this is harder for my husband than me.... But at least now he recognizes that.

    So I am glad you are going to counseling, it will probably help you both.
  14. TammyL

    TammyL New Member

    ok so we started the "detachment" process and came home yesterday to a clean house, even hardwood floors were done. I said thank you but did not give mind or listen when he was trying to tell me any of the "drama" from his day. Instead I looked at my husband and started a conversation with him.
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  15. Kathy813

    Kathy813 Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Of course you do. Every parent that posts on this site loves their child (no matter how old that child is). Otherwise, we all would have washed our hands of the situation and wouldn't need a place like this.

    That is the wonderful thing about the CD board. As RN0441 said, "we get it."

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  16. DarkwingPsyduck

    DarkwingPsyduck Active Member

    I am new to the forum. I am not the parent of an addict, but an addict myself. 25 years old, was hooked on opiates, mainly oxycodone, for 3 years. So I hope to be able to provide insight from the other side. I lost both parents when I was 16, and then was on my own. Survived by the good graces of friends' parents, and girlfriend's parents. Did that until a few years ago, when I got in touch with an aunt and uncle I hadn't spoken to for almost 15 years. They had custody of my twin sister and I when we were around 3, until Dad kidnapped us (literally). These people are easily the greatest people I have ever known. They have done EVERYTHING for me, and then some. Place to live, food to eat, clothes to wear, money for school, etc. I adore them. This uncle is the first real male role model I ever knew. The only man I really respect. My aunt is 60, and never had children of her own. To this day, she works about 80 hours a week.

    The point I am trying to make is that, even though I love and almost worship them, my addiction caused me to do :censored2: I am horribly ashamed of. I stole from them. Lied to them. Used them. Disrespected the very few rules they have. I :censored2: all over EVERYTHING they have done for me. I knew it was wrong even while doing it, but the addiction was so strong I was able to do mental acrobatics and justify it, at least until the drugs wore off again. I simply didn't know HOW to live sober. I am 14 months clean right now, after my aunt and uncle spent thousands and thousands of dollars for a Suboxone treatment program. They did that even after the monster I was to them. So, your son certainly does love you. he doesn't necessarily enjoy hurting or disappointing you. It's just... Necessary in his eyes. He feels regret, and shame when he sobers up, which a part of the reason why he does not want to sober up. Trust me, dealing with the horrible things you did during addiction is the most difficult part of cleaning up. But it is necessary. He will need to do the same to get his :censored2: together. You should not enable his behavior in any way. But there will come a time where he will run out of drugs and be forced to look at himself. He wont like what he sees. When he dislikes what he sees strongly enough, he will need support of loved ones. I only had 2 people who gave a :censored2: whether I lived or died. Not being melodramatic, that is a fact, but I NEEDED them. You don't need to trust him to provide the kind of help he really needs. Trust is earned, and it is harder to get back every time you betray it.

    Sorry to ramble. I started browsing this forum while still in active addiction, to get a better understanding of the parents' perspectives, and it has been a real eye opener for me. I never imagined all the ways in which I was hurting my aunt and uncle. I knew I was hurting them, just not the manner of the pain.
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  17. tbod

    tbod New Member

    Exactly, can write a book on this...but in a nut shell, saw this coming long long ago.
    The key indicators early on for my kid (19 now) was the lack in the ability to read others and adjust his own behaviors to "fit in" and start developing his own persona early on. Then,came the endless rejection from his peers and schools due to his inability to socially integrate coupled with lack of self control and ADHD. That coupled with impulsive behaviors, lack of good decision making skills, and an insatiable emotional neediness, made him a perfect target for pot, and derelicts that became his friends. So, what you get is a kid that has no real ability to focus, therefore no real development of self discipline or motivation...coupled with pot as the mode of self soothing because of the anxieties of being basically a social misfit. Unfortunately, the outlook for these types is kind of bleak in my opinion. So, the bottom line is he is completing evening high school this June, and is going to move out of my house (no choice) and will have to make it on his own. He is playing everyone to include his family psychologist and every therapist he has had. Hospitalized 11 times throughout childhood. What a racket that is. This is learned behavior by the way. He has no complex planning ability...just a short term conniving personality as that was what he learned over the years the doctors like to hear...since not having the wherewithal to have any real ability (as that would mean exerting himself), so he's developed this fast talk (without really saying anything and you can actually hear him contradict himself and lose the point he's trying to make) that he truly believes is how he will get out of trouble and jams throughout life...and make "deals". He just got fired today (his third job he's been fired from in less than two years) for fighting a co-worker. What an idiot. And is already down playing it stating he doesn't really care. He has stolen from us, lied to us endlessly, and is a complete loser who really needs to move out and get on with his life as best he can. Not going to wait for him to stabilize himself or whatever....that is a farce. Anyway, thanks for listening.
  18. ForeverSpring

    ForeverSpring Well-Known Member

    This is an older thread. You may want to start your own, a brand new one, if you want responses.

    I do have to say im shocked at your assessment of your son and a that he is an "idiot" or "a loser." No matter how hard things get, we still love our kids. Or the parents on this board do.

    And mental health is not a farce. I understand your frustration, but you really dont seem to have any soft spot at all your own child. He is 19 and should not be written off at his young age. Lots of time for him to change and grow up. Its not his fault if he cant read others. He could on the autism spectrum, which is often mistaken for the more gentle sounding ADHD. Doctors prefer to say ADHD because its not as alarming to the anxious parent. Either way, his deficits are NOT his fault. Did you ever take this poor kid for a complete evaluation, to a psychiatrist, did you fight for school interventions to help him succeed? Thats your job as a parent of a struggling minor child.

    He does need to leave. He needs to get away from your negativity toward him. JMO
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2016
  19. pigless in VA

    pigless in VA Well-Known Member

    Welcome, DarkwingPsyduck. I think you can be a great support to some of the parents on this board. Thank you for sharing your story.
  20. DarkwingPsyduck

    DarkwingPsyduck Active Member

    Wow, I sincerely hope I have not pushed my aunt or uncle this far... Your son is doing stupid :censored2:, but that doesn't make him stupid. It sounds like he does have some legitimate psychiatric issues. Not saying that is an excuse for his behavior, but it is an explanation. And ALL addicts are conniving. It is the name of the game. It gets to the point where it is almost a subconscious thing. Like, I would begin manipulations and plans ahead of time, without any immediate intention to benefit from them. We just... Set up future manipulation. We are VERY good at it, too. So good, in fact, we are able to fool ourselves. Able to justify horrible things we do even though we know they are wrong. I can tell you that no addict is happy to be in their position. They don't particularly enjoy it. They didn't set out with the intention of becoming a liar, and a thief. It's progressive. We all set these little rules for ourselves. :censored2: we are willing to do, and not willing to do. In time, however, it all goes out the window and there is very little we will not do to maintain ourselves. On the rare occasions an addict is sober (usually do to lack of drugs, not really choice), they despise themselves. They feel shame. Remorse. Disgust. Which merely provides ANOTHER reason to use. If it all sounds insane to you, that's probably because it is. Doing the same things over and over and over, despite knowing what the results will ultimately be. That isn't the behavior or thinking of a healthy mind.

    I wont presume to know you, or your whole story, but I will hope your (entirely understandable) resentment wanes for you. If your son gets his :censored2: together, or not. You still need to do you.