I am worn down...

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by WornOutFather, Sep 30, 2015.

  1. WornOutFather

    WornOutFather New Member

    As most parents on here, I could write a book as my first post describing the issues with my 19yo son. I'll shorten it as I'm just looking for some advice.

    First. He currently lives at home. He has no vehicle because he crashed his after 2 weeks and I cannot buy him another one. He can't keep a job longer than a month because, well, he's lazy and calls in "sick" all the time or just doesn't show up - RIGHT NOW, he is supposed to be at work, but I have no idea where he is, and he's NOT at work.

    He went to a few therapy sessions 12 months ago. He's a manipulator but the therapist wasn't letting it work on her. He was there for medications. She told him he probably needed anxiety medications but that she wasn't going to give me a script unless he was going to stop smoking pot so she could figure out if it was helping.
    He is self-medicating with POT, tons of it. And apparently he gets Prozac from friends.

    My son failed out of community college the first semester because he just didn't feel like going.

    Ok, so that's about HIM.

    His attitude at home is horrible. Yes, there are moments of "wow he so pleasant" but then when he doesn't get what he wants, he's calling (or texting me) bad names, cussing up a storm and is just horrible. He left home a couple times but always ended up coming back when his friends didn't want him mooching anymore. I HATE the idea of my first born son being homeless, so I ALWAYS let him back. I then kicked him out once because he got violent and threatened to kill himself (manipulation, remember). I got police involved and suicide prevention and they called his bluff. So I kicked him out. Then, 2 months later, let him back in.

    He has stolen cash and gift cards. Got into my paypal accounts and bought stuff. (we're only talking about $200-$300 but still). He will lie, lie, lie about something I have physical proof off (ya know, caught red handed) and then he continues to lie calling me an idiot.

    This morning, as I sit here after calling in sick so I could deal with this, I am fed up. He stole money again yesterday (still denies it). He broke into my email accounts for some reason. Found a bottle of prozac pills in his room (40-50 pills). He didn't go to work. I have no idea where he is.

    I am lost. I have 3 other younger kids in the house and they are seeing all of this. Mind you, rarely, rarely will I fight with my son. I have been overall calm with him, and if it was going to be heated, I would have my wife take them somewhere. But, the kids aren't dump. They know there are issues.

    I don't want him here. I don't feel bad about not wanting him here. But, we live in MN and it's starting to get cold. He has NO money, NO car, maybe still has a job, but NOWHERE to go. How can a father, a God-fearing father, kick his son out to be homeless? Thanks for listening.
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  2. pasajes4

    pasajes4 Well-Known Member

    Welcome to our little corner of the world. I won't go into details, but i found it necessary to not allow my 18 year old son to live in my house. The behavior you are describing is the same behaviors that most of us have had to deal with. Many ofvus have had to invite our young and not so young adults yo live else where.

    There are jomeless shelters that they can go to until they decide they want to live a bettrr life free of drugs.
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  3. toughlovin

    toughlovin Well-Known Member

    Hi Worn out... Welcome. I have been where you are. We kicked out son out when he was 18 because he was flagrantly violating all the rules (taking the car in the middle of the night without permission) and when I told him he needed to start following the rules he threatened me. We too had a younger child at home. It was a very tough time and it definitely got worse before it got better. So I totally get where you are coming from not wanting your son to be homeless. He probably does have places to go, although they may be with folks you would rather he not go with.... and there are services for homeless youth. More than you realize I am sure. My son did spend some time in Denver homeless in the middle of winter so I totally get the worry of the cold.

    However it is not healthy for your 3 younger children to watch his behavior and that you let him get away with it. It really isnt good for him either. So at this point your duty as a father is to your 3 younger kids.... and you dont want them getting the message that this is ok. I will say it was a big benefit to my daughter that we kicked my son out... her last couple of years in HS were peaceful at home and she blossomed and is doing very well now in college.

    Even if you do kick your son out, you can continue to let your son know you love him and will help him when he wants to help himself. We kept the door open with my son (although not to come home) and he called us when he got in trouble (several times). He is now almost 24 and finally after some times in jail, time homelss and several stints at rehab he has chosen himself to get clean and is doing much much better and we have a much much better relationship. So there is hope, although the journey is arduous.

    I wish I could say differently but continuing to enable him to stay at home, and behave this way is not going to help him. All he is learning is that you are a softie and he can manipulate you to get what he wants, and he will think he can do that to others as well. It is not the way the world works as my son had to learn.

    I dont regreat kicking my son out, although it was totally awful... and him being homeless was the worst.

    Keep posting, many of us have been in your shoes.
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  4. Jabberwockey

    Jabberwockey Well-Known Member

    By remembering that your son is an adult, not a child. There are 19 year olds right now fighting and dying for our freedom, not because they were forced to do so but because they chose to do so. Through his actions, your son has made his choice as well. You wont help him by letting him stay. Not only will you hurt him, you will hurt the younger siblings as well.

    We live in Missouri and kicked our 19 year old son out last October. He survived. Yes, we helped. Much more than we should have. You can read the threads by me and Lil, my wife for more details on the apartment fiasco.

    It wont be easy. Get help through group therapy, a counselor, CODA, or whatever you have available in your area. Read the article near the top of the Emeritus board on detachment. But stick to your guns. Just remember that if he were not your son you would have had him arrested and kicked out long ago. Being your son doesn't give him a get out of jail free card from responsibility for his actions.

    Our son has been on his own (yeah, right!) for almost a year now and has had nothing terribly catastrophic happen to him yet. He has survived. Your son will survive as well. Time to take the training wheels off of the bike and let him fall a time or two.
  5. Lil

    Lil Well-Known Member

    I'm so very sorry you have to be here. I'm struck by the similarities in your post and our situation. My husband, Jabberwocky, just posted, I see. Other than you having other kids and your son wrecking the car, our stories are virtually identical.

    We did put our son out for stealing when he was 19. He was in a local homeless shelter for a time and then we co-signed the rent on a cheap apartment because he found a job working nights. He promptly quit and we paid the rent for six months to protect our credit. He's currently at an aunt's house and working, hopefully things will change, but we're not optimistic.

    Trust me when I say that throwing our son out with nowhere to go and no money and pretty much nothing but a suitcase was the single hardest thing I've ever done. How do you do it? Because there aren't really any more alternatives. He stole from us while we were supporting him, even buying him cigarettes and giving an allowance. He went to community college, flunked out (never attended) and when he came home we warned him, ONE thing goes missing and we call the police.

    $700 went missing.

    We did not call the police, because I simply couldn't face it. And it was cash; impossible to prove. But we did put him out.

    I think the question becomes, is keeping him home in any way helping him? Is he more reliable? Is he more responsible? Is he growing up? If the answer is no...then it's time to leave the nest. Hard as it is, it becomes the only choice.
  6. New Leaf

    New Leaf Well-Known Member

    Welcome WornOut, I feel for you and your dilemma. It is the most difficult place to be. I have removed my firstborn several times from our home due to reckless, obnoxious, disrespectful behavior. Her downward spiral began in Middle School with pot smoking and our relationship eroded from there. She only wanted to party, was terribly moody, resentful and unmotivated. I do believe that the music of the 80's played a big part in her downfall. I did not allow rap in my home, but she and her friends managed to fill their heads with it elsewhere. She chose peers who wore rags, partied, drank, smoked pot. She lived to party. I showed her the door after a booming argument, and way too much crap taking when she was 18. I lowered myself to a point of anger so deep- my parting words to her-shamefully- Get the "F" out. I don't normally swear, believing there are better words, but this fit the occasion. She took to "gypsy" living, drifting, found a "gangsta" boyfriend who ended their relationship by placing a dead kitten in her bag. UGH. He later was gunned down in California.

    Not a pretty picture for my first born-but her choices.....That was 18 years ago.

    I hope I won't come on too harsh, because I am in anger mode.
    Why on God's green earth should you buy him another car?

    Therapy will not work for him unless he is willing to change. You on the other hand are here on this site. You are looking for answers and are possibly ready to change your response to his drug induced, infantile, disrespectful, unacceptable, tantruming, all by the way, being witnessed by his younger siblings. How they turn out depends a whole lot on how they see their Father respond.I encourage you to seek counseling, to have a professional guide you. Please continue to search this sight, and read the article on Detachment- very informative to addicts behavior and our response as parents.

    WornOut, would you stand this behavior from anybody else? Horrible doesn't begin to describe this, there is no excuse, no reason. We have said "It is the drugs that make them act this way" . It is our adult children, choosing to do drugs, abusing and using us as parents. We had to learn to stop looking at our first and third born as the children we raised. They are adults. Adults under the terrible influence of drugs. Invasion of the body snatcher. This is your addicted Adult son abusing you and disrespecting you. It is up to you to change how you respond to his unacceptable behavior.

    Kicked out by his actions-his choices, these are his friends we are talking about-big billboard sign WornOut it reads
    " I am so despicable in my choices and sponging that my own friends can't stand me anymore, but hey there's Dad-he will take me back!"
    Been there, done that. It is my husband that allowed our firstborn back, I became the bad guy. Bad, bad Mother, how dare I want peace in my home. How dare I demand respect? My adult children played us over and over.

    BEST move- BRAVO WornOut!

    OOOPS, BAD move. We have been through this so many times. It took a lot of years of the revolving door for us to realize having our adult difficult children at home did not work for us or them.

    "Only $200-$300" please WornOut do not minimize his thieving. It is the ultimate disrespect for a child to steal from their parents. The more he does it, the more emboldened he will be to do it again.The more he will disrespect you, because you are allowing it to happen.

    Please WornOut, hang on to the fed up feeling, do not give in to your worries, see it for what it is, an impossible, ugly, heart and gut wrenching, unacceptable REALITY. This is your son. This is your life with your son on drugs, living in your home.

    We have four children after our firstborn. The two youngest are the ones who suffered the most from the antics of our first and third born.I am constantly apologizing to them for me not waking up and smelling the proverbial coffee. Not only did these two older ones rob us, they robbed their siblings of their childhood and precious time we should have spent concentrating on their rearing and future.Please look in to your three younger children's eyes, hearts and minds. If you will not put your foot down for your own self-respect-do it for your three babies!

    WornOut, we all have to hit that breaking point in our own time-even your son does. He will not do anything to get well as long as he has control over you and your household. It is good that you don't feel bad about not wanting him there. That is a BIG start. There are places he can go to get out of the cold. This is his life, his choosing. Our adult children force our hands in removing them- it is the consequences of their degraded choices. Be careful about the "IF's, and "Buts". This is yourself bargaining with the "awfulness" out there in the world. Right now, the "awfulness" is your son, on drugs, wreaking mayhem and havoc in your home.
    You said "How can a father, a God-fearing father, kick his son out to be homeless?"
    I reply- "How can a son cause so much anguish as to force a God-fearing father to kick him out of the home?"

    Please put the responsibility and consequence back where it belongs, in your sons adult lap. Only then will he be forced to look at himself and deal with his mistakes.You are doing yourself, your wife and three children a great favor, you are giving them peace by standing firm. You are doing your son a bigger favor, by showing him at an early stage in the game, that the gig is up, you will no longer allow him to walk all over you and the family.

    I am here writing this to you, because I wish we had the courage to do this. It would have saved us a lot of heart ache and misery. Maybe, just maybe my mixed up addicted adult kids would be in a better place today.

    Take courage WornOut, say a prayer for your son, and faithfully give him over to God. That is what I have finally done.Whenever I find myself pining away for my grown girls, I say a prayer for them. I say a prayer for you now, that you will be emboldened to take charge of your household and stand firm in your convictions.

    God bless you and your family. Others will come and share.
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  7. Childofmine

    Childofmine one day at a time

    Worn out father, welcome to the forum. You are getting lots of good support and thinking already. My son lived on the street through parts of several winters. He survived. I survived because I learned about all of the services available to homeless people and that is how I could sleep at night. There are almost too many services, quite frankly, providing yet another safety net so they don't have to face the consequences of their own decisions. It is very hard and we understand but there comes a day when we face that our efforts have not worked at all and it's time to set firm and clear boundaries. It sounds like you might be there. We are here for you. Please keep sharing with us. We care.
  8. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Welcome, WornOut. I hear you. I'm getting worn out, too.
    You've gotten some very good information and opinions here. Stay with us.
  9. AppleCori

    AppleCori Well-Known Member

    Hi and welcome, WO

    How are things going today?

  10. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    I want to say welcome, too. Everybody else has said the important stuff. I will chime in.

    The thing is this: If you tolerate his misdeeds, after a point, you are as if condoning them. If you have told him, and he keeps doing it, he is choosing it, unless he is seriously ill. As you say, your younger children are watching all of this. That has already put them at risk, and your authority as a parent at risk.

    The person who should have thought of the cold is your son. Perhaps if he is out in it, he may make another choice. At least the opportunity exists.

    You are aware that he is using at least some substances for which he does not have a prescription. He is undermining psychiatric treatment. He has washed out of school and work. He has crashed the car. He is insolent. He steals from you. All of these behaviors he is choosing to do, under your roof.

    The question to ask yourself is whether your support and protection is helping or not.

    We have found that changing for adult children comes from facing the consequences of what they do. It may take some time. But really, at this point whether or not he changes is not your primary worry, I think. It is your other children and you and your wife.

    What you want or what you can handle does not count in this calculation. I am sorry to be direct. But the situation must be faced for what it is. We have all been there.

    Our children can and do change if we stop insulating them from responsibility for their actions.

    It is still not that cold. You and your wife can decide to help him with a little money. Or with clothes. With addresses of homeless shelters. A bus ticket.

    Once out of your house he can enlist in the military or Job Corps. Or he can get a job or decide to keep one. Or he can get drug treatment if he needs it: Victory Outreach, for example.

    There are all kinds of positive and self-protective actions he can take. But right now he is undermining and abusing you and his mother and putting at risk your family. We support you one hundred percent.

    Understand this: You did not create this situation. Your son will become a man by learning to decide better. The way he learns how to is through cleaning up his own messes and by learning not to create more.

    Keep posting. I am sorry you have found yourself in this difficult and painful situation. You will find much support here, and wisdom based upon walking the same path.
  11. jude-in-nj

    jude-in-nj Member

    Your story is eerily similar to mine... So similar that as I was reading it out loud to my husband I stopped for a second and said "did I write this??" we have 3 younger kids at home as well and I whole heartedly agree their well being must come first. My son is almost 24 and is now in jail awaiting a court date on Friday for assault charges and violation of probation. We have kicked him out many times... Only to let him back. We realized unfortunately too late that we have enabled him for years.
    I am sorry you are going through this.. but you will find good advice here and people dealing with similar stories.
    All I can add is that they are adults (although I don't think they are mature) and the choices they make are theirs. We have guided them as much as we can and it is up to them to make the right choices.