I Need some objective and experienced opinions.....

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by welcometowitsend, Jun 29, 2013.

  1. Little Update:
    difficult child is not speaking to me, husband or my parents. I don't think he is speaking to easy child anymore either because she refused to acknowledge him when we went into his work last weekend. (She was the only one he would acknowledge...she gave him the finger and walked away)
    My parents are back on board with husband and I because difficult child asked them for money, they refused and he hasn't spoken to them since.
    Last conversation I had with difficult child via text was that because I wasn't doing anything for him he saw no reason to have me in his life. Said he didn't want a relationship with me and wanted me out of his life.

    One part of me wants to give him what he wants and just leave him on his own and hope he comes to his senses and decides he wants a relationship with his family.

    Another part of me wants to continue to try having a relationship with him. He is only 17 after all. I finished reading the book When Parents Hurt by Joshua Coleman. He believes that even if they are angry, not communicating, etc. that parents should continue to pay for things they would pay for with a easy child until they are 30. So, if I am willing to pay for easy child's dental then I should pay for difficult child's dental, college, etc. Of course that doesn't mean paying for everything, just what I'd be willing to do if he was a easy child.

    husband and I have been talking and we thought about trying to meet with difficult child to discuss the possibility of working on our relationship. If nothing else we really want to see him graduate from high school. He only got 3 credits this year (at least I hope he got 3) out of 8. We were thinking of striking a bargain with him. He goes to summer school and passes and we will rent him a room on a month to month basis in a shared accommodation setting. We don't want to get him an apartment because he'll have parties but if he just has a room in someone's house then that isn't likely to happen. I don't think he's the type to destroy someone's property anyway - he never destroyed our home while he lived here.

    Then I'd like to continue paying his rent for the coming school year while he goes to school. My conditions would be that he gets counselling, individual and family (to work on our relationship) and that he passes his courses. He would be required to continue working part time to pay for his groceries and toiletries.

    If he doesn't live up to his end of the bargain then husband and I will stop paying his rent. He will be 18 in February so if he fails his first semester courses (exams are end of January) he will be on his own as of his 18th birthday. If we can work this out he should be able to graduate next year. He has 20 credits now (I hope), needs 30. 1 in summer school this year, 8 next year, 1 in summer school next year.

    Part of me thinks he is just going to use us for the money and part of me thinks he is hurt because he feels like we should be helping him because he's a kid and we're his parents. Ugh. I just want something to work with him, I want to try and help him, and I'm obviously not ready to give up. Even husband is on board with this idea because I think he is having a much harder time than he lets on. And of course he would like to see me happy about my relationship with difficult child. Regardless if he is taking summer school it starts very soon so we need to make up our minds about what we want to do ASAP.

  2. ForeverSpring

    ForeverSpring Well-Known Member

    I'm still in shock reading that somebody who wrote a books thinks we should pay for ANYTHING for our kids until age 30. It's hard to focus after reading that..lol. Sounds like the author is a real entitlement freak and thinks that you should give up EVERYTHING for an extended period of time just to get a difficult child to pretend he cares. Most of us realize that we don't hear from our difficult child's unless they want something. This rings true even when they aren't angry at us. And they love their emotional blackmail. "I won't speak to you if you won't pay my bills."

    My own personal opinion is to maybe do it up until eighteen, but I wouldn't go beyond that. Is this author addressing parents of kids who abuse us, do drugs, threaten us, routinely call us horrible names, etc? Or is he talking about kids we just had a tiff with. I don't see it helping with most of our kids. They will gladly that the money and, if they need to be nice to us to get it, they will SOMETIMES do it. But if they don't mean it, do you really have a relationship?

    I think the book's author sounds like he believes in enabling just to get a phonecall from a nasty grown kid.

    Everyone needs to deal with these situations in their own ways. You have to do what is comfortable for you, but don't think that it may help your son. The only person who can help your son is himself. You aren't giving up on him if you don't pay for him to have a cushy life while he abuses you. He's learning natural consequences. You CAN NOT FIX HIM IN ANY WAY. Only he can fix himself and you can help him, IF he comes to you with sincerity, wanting to know where to go for help, etc. You can't bribe him into being nice in his heart or to living a better, less destructive lifestyle.

    Good luck and keep us posted! :)
  3. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    WTW, my thoughts on the subject are that regardless of what experts or ANYONE else says, we, the parents have to follow our gut, our intuition, our feelings about where to draw those lines, we are the one's actually in the trenches with our kids, we are the ones who have to live with our choices, no one else knows the terrain as we do. Not even all the therapists and authors and experts. This ground is clearly always shifting. YOU are the expert here.

    In addition, I have found that each of us has to go to the limit we feel is right, we have to turn over every rock and try everything we feel is best, so that once all our options are exhausted and we honestly feel as if we have done everything to help our child, we can then detach and move away knowing we tried everything. I don't think detachment is possible without that knowledge.

    You have a very good head on your shoulders, you have always thought everything through well and sought out advise and counsel with professionals and your group. This is no exception, you have good ideas. Your son is young, he is still not an adult, he is still not fully formed in his brain, so all of your ideas sound reasonable and right to me. As long as he has to tow the line, go to counseling, (perhaps you might make medication compliance a part of it too, and checking in with you once a week) as long as he works, gets good grades, you are forcing him to do his part. In the absence of that, and of course, he may immediately balk at your conditions and not be willing to do any of it, you will pull your support. You are setting boundaries, you are teaching him that life is about working towards goals with actual limits on behavior, you are teaching him how to be a grown up man. If your proposals don't get accepted, if he refuses, or if he just uses you for the money and doesn't do his end of the bargain, you will know soon enough and then you will understand on a deeper level just what you can and cannot do and what you can expect.

    I support your plan. I support YOU. I think it all should be made perfectly clear, so you may want to write it up like a contract and have him sign it. They are masters at finding loopholes. "you never said that" "I don't remember saying I would work too" I know for a fact you said you would pay for my haircuts" Sigh. You know what I mean, they will play you any chance they get, so make it VERY, VERY clear without any loopholes, as if an attorney was drawing up a legal document, this way you have it written down and can give him a copy and you can refer to it when he 'forgets' that he said he would do something. Cagey as they are....................

    Best of best to you WTW, I am right there in your corner, always. Many hugs and always wishes for peace for you and your family.
  4. scent of cedar

    scent of cedar New Member

    I agree. You have thought everything out clearly. There are built-in limits and end dates, consequences and expectations. Learning detachment skills is to help us be healthy and strong in dealing with our difficult child children. When our children are still young, when there is any smallest chance we can still save them, that is what we should do. With your understanding of how to stay healthy yourself while you help your difficult child turn himself around, I think your plan is a good one.

    Nice work. :O)

    I love it that easy child gave difficult child son the finger.

  5. DaisyFace

    DaisyFace Love me...Love me not


    As a parent whose difficult child is recently out of the house - I've come to a realization:

    difficult children will manipulate those who allow themselves to be manipulated.

    So, instead of trying to control what your son does by means of contracts, agreements, deals, and bargains....you need to decide what is OK with you regardless of your difficult child's actions. Know what I mean?? IOW - if you wanted to give your son a gold coin as a present...you would do it purely because it was what YOU wanted to do - and you were 100% OK with whatever he decided to do with the coin: treasure it, pawn it, put it in a vending machine, throw it in a wishing well...etc.

    If you do not feel good about paying his rent without something from him in return - then you should NOT do it. Period.

    If you allow yourself to be used for money - you will be used. If you don't allow it - he will find another sucker. They always do...

  6. trinityroyal

    trinityroyal Well-Known Member

    WTWE, I know it's impossible to keep the emotions out of it, but just for the sake of clarity I'm going to boil the situation down to its core elements. A bit like an equation.

    Process A:
    difficult child is willing to have you in his life IF:
    1) you foot the bills
    2) all contact is on his terms

    So: IF you pay difficult child's bills AND all contact is on his terms, THEN difficult child will allow you in his life. ELSE difficult child will break all contact.

    Process B:
    You are willing to support difficult child's IF:
    1) he follows your rules
    2) he maintains contact on your terms

    So: IF difficult child follows the rules AND contact is on your terms THEN you will pay difficult child's bills. ELSE you withdraw support.

    I'm having trouble with the "Else" condition for process B. difficult child has not shown himself willing to follow your rules or adhere to contracts so far. I don't think this is likely to change with his current mind set. You're already at the point of process failure for B, and A is untenable.

    I think that leaves only the third option, which is to do as your difficult child wishes. Stand aside and let him sink or swim. Some people (myself included) are hard-wired to have to learn things for themselves. Sometimes the lessons are difficult and painful. Sometimes they are excruciating. But it's looks like it's the only way he will learn. I think at this point, supporting your difficult child will just prolong the misery before you come to this place again, at some point in the future.

    I'm sorry you're having to face this. There are no good options in this situation, only less horrible ones. Ultimately, you have to do whatever you can live with doing.

    Sending many hugs,
  7. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Well put, Trinity.

    It isn't about difficult child, it's about you. What can YOU live with?
    Back when GFGbro was at his worst, my parents decided that requests for help would be determined on a "need/deserve" basis, but that gifts would still be given without that filter. So, if they were giving $X this year to the "kids" for birthdays, then every kid got $X, including GFGbro. Now that I'm older, I see a bit of where they were coming from... the "gifts" required at least minimal contact - they had to know where he was and how to contact him, which gave them some peace of mind.
  8. DaisyFace

    DaisyFace Love me...Love me not

    Trinity is so right! Process A is ridiculous to even consider and Process B requires you to be able to exert some sort of control or supervision over difficult child's life, which was not possible when he was under your roof - I can't imagine it would work now!

    Also - I know you are not in the states, so the "legal" issues might not be the same - but you will want to consider the realities of agreeing to pay rent for difficult child. If he has no income / employment or even job prospects, the the person signing the lease will be YOU. And when difficult child chooses not to comply with some requirement you made - now YOU are going to be forced to "break" the lease which YOU signed - which may incur penalties, not the least of which may be a poor credit rating. Plus - if you pay, then later decide not to pay, difficult child will likely be angry and guess who will be liable for any damage / theft difficult child causes the property on his way out? YOU!
  9. witzend

    witzend Well-Known Member

    I was there when M was 17. Thank goodness he had more credits than yours does, and he graduated HS by the skin of his teeth and through making his dad and I out to be crazies and moving in with a teacher against our wishes. But I digress.

    Pay for anything? Nah. M got his clothes and some books, and that was it. I would certainly offer him the counseling after I had found a counselor that was on the same page as you and your husband. I would mediate an agreement with a counselor present, and not one minute beforehand.

    I'm not quite understanding where he would live while he goes to summer school before you get him a shared accommodation? Or will you pay for SA while he is in summer school?

    Unless your difficult child has been honest and lived up to his end of bargains in the past, I would strike no grand bargains with him. Do you have health insurance that would cover a treatment facility? That's a safe place to live, and he can do schoolwork there. (The one we sent M to was of no help whatsoever, but we had no time for research. :( )

    A big problem for you and your husband is that difficult child is 17 years old, and while in most things he is able to make his own decisions, you are legally liable for everything he does. I don't mean that he would go out and do something crazy, but even a easy child can be a teenager. Leave the water on and flood the house, and you are financially liable for that. We went to an attorney and paid $300 for a consult. It was the best $300 we spent in the entire mess. I would suggest that before you make any big decisions you consult an attorney and find out what your rights and obligations are, as well as what your difficult child's rights and obligations are.
  10. busywend

    busywend Well-Known Member

    Reading all the responses, you have been given excellent advice. But, if I put myself in your shoes, I would likely still go through with my plan. Because, if feels like the last thing I can try. And I have to because that is my child.

    And maybe that is fine. But, you just have to lay it out in your mind that it is the last ditch effort and there will be no more. I GET your desire for graduation. I think I would stand on my head for weeks if it meant my child would graduate from school.

    So, go ahead and make this last ditch attempt. Just be sure you and husband know exactly what this is and what happens if it does not work. Where do you go from there? What are the reactions you will give if it fails? Be on the same page and prepared for anything.
  11. witzend

    witzend Well-Known Member

    If you feel that you can live with disappointment one more time, this is also good advice. I hope that doesn't come across as dismissive. There just aren't any "cut and dyed" right answers for this. But before you offer, you and husband must be on the same page. Do you already see a therapist, or is there someone that you both feel comfortable with as an unbiased arbiter? I found that it helped for husband and I when we worked things out with a therapist beforehand because having been married for so long we were often willing to make allowances for the other's feelings about a "minor change". We were not as comfortable changing the deal in the middle with someone else involved. We knew we'd have to have a logical explanation rather than "I caved because it was easier at the time" or "I knew you would deal with it."
  12. Thank you all so much for your thoughts and your wisdom. It is much appreciated. I will definitely consult a lawyer before proceeding, especially if husband and I have to sign a lease on difficult child's behalf. I'm hoping to find a month to month situation for him or a short term lease so we won't be stuck paying long term if things don't work out.

    We have not offered difficult child anything so far. We did meet with him on Sunday afternoon at a local restaurant. He paid for his own meal even though we offered to pay. 1 point for difficult child. At first he seemed to have his angry bad attitude but that melted very quickly. I think he realized he missed us. I think husband being there was so important to this whole thing. He and difficult child have not spoken in 7 months. We just expressed that we respected that he no longer wanted to live at home but that we didn't see any reason why we couldn't have a relationship and all get along. The hard shell seemed to melt very quickly and at one point I thought he was almost overcome with emotion because he didn't speak for a minute and had to look away.

    He told us that he has a plan to graduate high school (apparently he can do some accelerated courses) and he wants to take a hospitality/bartending course at college. it's a 1 year course. We're just glad he has a plan. It's not up to his potential at all but he has a plan to get trained to do 'something' and if he can make a living and be happy then we are happy too.

    He also has a new girlfriend. Apparently she has graduated high school and is looking for a job. She is older - 19 in August. She could sign a lease herself, I guess. They are planning on moving in together. Sigh. Of course we haven't even met her yet and they have only been dating a few weeks, I think. So, I don't know how that is going to pan out.

    We didn't offer to rent him a room or anything yet. He was asked to leave his last place of residence a week ago. He stayed in the homeless shelter for a week and is now staying with a friend whose parents are out of town on holidays for the next two weeks. After that he'll have to go back to the homeless shelter unless he can find another sympathetic friend. I really don't want that for him but husband and I decided to wait on offering to pay for anything. We have a bit of time before school starts in September and he says he's not doing summer school. I guess we want to see if difficult child is sincere in his desire to have a relationship with us without any strings attached.

    If we do pay for a place for him to stay it will be on the same terms that we would pay if he was away at college. I am more than happy to help support a college student that is going to school and making decent grades. If that doesn't happen then it's time for the student to find his own way in the world. Does that make sense? I said to husband, maybe we should look at this next year of high school as if it were his first year of college. A trial run so to speak.

    Anyway, I'm cautiously hopeful that things will get better and difficult child will find a way to have a relationship with us that isn't hostile. easy child even spoke to him for a little while. Not sure how she feels about the whole thing - we haven't had time to have a sit down and discuss it yet. I wanted to give her some time to process things first.
  13. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    If your difficult child is a "typical" difficult child (is there any such thing?!)... he may need a few years to "ripen".

    I know quite a few kids who went to university "later", and put themselves through by working in the hospitality industry. A good barkeep or bouncer (he's better off being the barkeep) makes a pretty good wage for a student, and the hours are mostly evenings and weekends. Just sayin...
  14. ForeverSpring

    ForeverSpring Well-Known Member

    You do realize that if you support him in any way, that is partly why he is allowing a relationship with you? He wants the money? The rent paid?

    As long as you stay clear and don't make yourself think it's all hunky dory and it is like it used to be, then you won't be disappointed in him. The girlfriend sounds like another impulsive, bad move, however that's the definition of a difficult child...lol.

    Good luck and while you are doing this, please go to Al-Anon or Nar-Anon. I'm assuming he uses drugs or drinks. This group helps you stay in reality and also helps you look out for yourselves. You both need to take good care of yourselves, not just difficult child. In the end, you can't help him forever. He will be alone one day.
  15. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I'm glad you were able to have lunch with difficult child, it sounds like you saw some real feelings in him and it was good to have husband there. You know WTW, this is just my view, but I feel it's less about all the ins and outs of what you do or don't do, or how long you do it or what you pay for, for me it's really to go as far as you feel is appropriate and fits with your own feelings and beliefs........to go that distance, no matter how far and then at a point you decide on, you stop............... We as parents walk a very tight rope on this detachment line, and we move ahead and back and sometimes we fall off completely. But in the final analysis, we all just put one foot in front of the other and do the best we can, always out of love for our kids and with the best intentions.

    There is no map, not one kid or circumstance is the same, although, they do tend to act out of similar scripts! I've found that each time we move ahead, we learn something, we get stronger, we have more resolve, we know the landscape better, we feel safer and more assured. Then one day, we just know what to do, we know the right road. There is a lot of doubt, a lot of fear, a lot of just plain not knowing how to proceed.

    You have a few new pieces of the puzzle to consider, he has a girlfriend, he has a place to stay for now, he has a plan, he paid for his lunch, he seemed touched to see you guys and he is still a difficult child. I imagine it isn't quite black and white for him either, there are shades of gray in his independent, bullet proof teenage world.............I'll bet he does miss you, but the other part of him is bigger............it's rarely all or nothing or black and white, that's what makes it all so challenging. If there were a "right" road, we would all take it! Instead there are all of these 'possible outcome' roads.............sigh..........and, geez, he is so young..........and yet, he made these choices he's living with now.........

    I think you have a good plan, wait and see. Next time you see him, you may have another piece of the puzzle. Each time you'll know more. Each time you can put out a call for help to all of us and get a truckload of choices and opinions, all valid, all good, so you can sift through and find the ones that fit for you.

    This crazy difficult child world is so odd, none of us know how to do this, but look around, we're all doing it.............I have no happy difficult child ending here in my own world and yet life does go on..........and I'm okay.........your ideas all sound valid to me, they sound well thought out, and yes it makes sense to support the student making good grades and if that doesn't happen, he finds his own way. I agree with that thinking. At any point he could shift, or not............in the meantime you are there for him in small ways and possibly big ones............when the next step shows up, you'll know what to do. I just talked to my therapist about this last week................how we recover from the enabling and one day we trust that we are doing the right thing, even if it's weird, even if it looks like we're rescuing them, it goes up and down and all over the place, it clearly isn't black and white, but we make the choices out of love, and I think that's the biggest point of all. And, sometimes, we love them and ourselves enough to let them go...........

    You're following your heart and your head and listening and waiting, all good healthy signs. Keep up the good work.
  16. Insane - That is pretty much what I said to husband. It's a living for a young person and if he is a late bloomer then he can pay his way through college/university by working evenings as a bartender and going to school during the day. :)

    MWM - I agree that the girlfriend is an impulsive move. He's a teenage boy. I think that's par for the course when it comes to difficult child boys and girls. To my knowledge he does not do drugs. He was tested 3 times last year and came up clean. He does drink occasionally but I don't think it's become a problem, I think it is more teenage parties type of drinking. I could be wrong, I'm not in his life enough on a day to day basis to see it.

    Thankfully we do have a support group and I've signed myself up for a 10 week family course through our version of NAMI (it starts in the fall).

    I do see the point that part of his relationship with us involves his desire for us to pay for things. I think that is typical of most teenagers though. It is a tough line because most teenagers still need their parents help financially but struggle so hard for independence and autonomy. I guess the difference between a difficult child and a easy child is that a easy child wouldn't base the relationship on whether or not the parents could pay, a difficult child probably would.

    At this point I am willing to help him for a couple of reasons. 1) What we were doing was only making things with difficult child worse. 2) He is only 17 and while the law sees him as independent (if he chooses to be) he really is still a child. 3) If he were heading off to college and living independently husband and I would be happy to support him and pay his living expenses. Many of his 17 year old friends who are only 2 or 3 months older than difficult child are off to college in the fall (by virtue of the fact that they started school a year earlier because their birthdays fall before Dec and difficult child is after). I know this is still high school and we shouldn't have to pay but we don't always get things to work out the way we want. If all he is doing is a 1 year college course instead of 4 years of university then, financially, I don't have a problem paying for this year of support through high school. If that's all we end up paying for then we're getting off cheap.

    You have a few new pieces of the puzzle to consider, he has a girlfriend, he has a place to stay for now, he has a plan, he paid for his lunch, he seemed touched to see you guys and he is still a
    difficult child
    RE: That is the summary of our recent visit - and the last part made me laugh, because it is so true. :)

    You are so right about the different paths, choices, options, decisions. There are so many scenarios and so many different personalities that it is impossible to have a hard and fast perfect answer for our difficult child's. Oh, if there were our lives would be so much easier, wouldn't they?

    I always try to operate out of love and sometimes making that decision that I feel is right hurts my heart so badly but I do it anyway. I know I seem all over the map when it comes to difficult child and maybe this is normal. One day I'm detached, the next I'm a sobbing mess, the next I'm researching options, the next I'm turning off the cell phone, the next I'm thinking of paying his rent. I guess I'm still on that roller coaster.

    I am realizing that if I give this financial support that I must do it without the expectation that difficult child is going to do what we want. I must do it realizing that I can't
    harbour anger or resentment if he doesn't make his grades, doesn't get into college. I'm doing it because I want to help him achieve that goal but if he doesn't achieve that goal then that is his choice. I can walk forward knowing that I did everything I could to help him, the rest is up to him.
  17. scent of cedar

    scent of cedar New Member

    Welcome, I think you are navigating a hurtful, impossible situation beautifully. I am doing a NAMI Family to Family next Fall, too. husband thinks he is not going with me.


    We'll see.

    All the emotions we all go through ARE crazy-making. But then, we are in weird, entirely unforeseen situations for which there is no right answer. We try everything, sometimes especially if it is a different thing than the one that didn't work, yesterday.

    And it will all be worth it ~ every penny, every bit of heartache ~ if you can bring your son through this time, safely.

    Speaking from experience, knowing you HAVE done everything, every single thing, you knew or thought of or learned about to help your child will be the one comfort you have, if the worst thing happens, and he doesn't turn himself around.

    Wishing you and your son well, Welcome.

    I almost teared up myself, reading the part about lunch, and husband, and how difficult child insisted on paying for his own meal.

    Those are such good beginnings.

  18. DaisyFace

    DaisyFace Love me...Love me not

  19. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    "I always try to operate out of love and sometimes making that decision that I feel is right hurts my heart so badly but I do it anyway. I know I seem all over the map when it comes to difficult child and maybe this is normal. One day I'm detached, the next I'm a sobbing mess, the next I'm researching options, the next I'm turning off the cell phone, the next I'm thinking of paying his rent. I guess I'm still on that roller coaster."

    That quote sums it all up in my opinion. That's the landscape, plain and simple. That's what is crazy making, that's what hurts us so, that's what brings on the doubts, no one can stand on this ever moving, violent precipice we stand on and not get shaken to the core. This is not a normal environment, this is an insane environment which is wracked with having to make these devastating choices which mangle our hearts, then we must learn to absorb that hurt and then get ready for the next step. This is not the way it is supposed to be and yet this is the way it is and getting to a place where the way it is is livable and doesn't take us out, is a remarkable journey.

    All those feelings you're having WTW are part of this landscape, you really can't escape that, we have to learn to live in it and be okay in it, whew, what a huge order. You are doing what feels right to you without expectations (which may not be met), that's good, and you're recognizing just how powerless we really are and learning to accept what is, that's as good as it gets..............sending you big hugs...............
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2013
  20. Barbara - This is a good beginning. Thank you. It makes me tear up too - happy and scared all at the same time.

    RE - You're right, I am still working on living in this insane environment. And it IS crazy making.

    We had another nice moment with difficult child yesterday. It was our wedding anniversary and we were going out for dinner and invited both kids. easy child came after a little coaxing from us but difficult child was thrilled to be invited.

    A couple of weird things that put up some flags for me though. He did not want to be picked up at the house he was staying at - instead he met us in a parking lot nearby. Then when we dropped him off he insisted on being dropped at the back of the property so he could just hop the fence because he says that's the way he always goes. Well, we couldn't pull over safely and drop him off so we drove around the block to the front of the house and let him out there. He didn't know which house it was - odd. So he said he would stand on the sidewalk and call his friend. We said goodbye and drove off but I noticed in the mirror he was walking in the opposite direction of the houses that we dropped him off at.....he was on the phone. So now I'm speculating...is he really staying there? What reason does he have to lie to me? Is he staying in a tent or shed in the backyard and not in the house? Or is he just not capable of figuring out which house he was staying at.

    And oh my does that boy need a shower. His clothes looked clean enough but whew! His hygiene has never been great but when he lived with us he did shower and brush his teeth. Not so much now.

    husband and I have decided to stick to our plan and commit to helping him for the next year. If he doesn't get his diploma and doesn't take care of himself that is his choice but we will have done what we could. If he does well we will continue to help him and if he doesn't he'll have to look for full time work and take on his own lease.