My son is 26yrs old. He's been in and out of jail and prison.


Staff member
Thread started on behalf of new member: Being Strong

My son is 26yrs old. He's been in and out of jail and prison. He did 5yrs and recently got released. Prior to incarceration he gave me a hard time. Wouldn't listen to me, drugs, stole my car, damaged apts. Almost being evicted of both places. He got evicted from one but was still coming over. He didn't want to work. It got to the point I was struggling financially, stressed. I always kept him in prayer. But it got worse. He met this girl who totally disrespected me. Long story short. When he was away I got married and moved to a different state. Now he's out and living on the streets. We signed an agreement that no one lives here. He's not in his right state of mind. I'm stressing now because it's sad to see him on the streets. I want so much better for him. But he's not doing anything to help himself. I'm trying to be strong. I pray healing for him and everyone. I still have hope.


Well-Known Member
Welcome Beingstrong. Your story is totally typical in this community. Our children have careened out of control, they're on the streets, they use drugs, they are hostile and disrespectful, they don't take care of themselves and trash us and their surroundings.

And when they do this, WE are the ones who feel out of control. And OUR lives careen out of control, as we seek to control THEM.

We.can.not.control.them. We.can.not.improve.their lives.

We can only change ourselves and make our lives better. We do this first by changing our focus from them to us. We do this little by little. Day by day.

Yes. It is heart-breaking what is happening to them. What they are doing to their lives. What they are not doing. How they are at risk. Yes. It could keep on this way or get worse.

But the thing we learn, is that change comes from them. Not from us.

It does not mean we cannot support them. It does not mean they cannot be in our lives.

But first comes our own well-being. If they are hostile, disrespectful, destructive, of us or our property and well-being, the first thing that has to happen, is very firm boundaries to keep them away. By limiting contact and interaction, and most definitely, out of our space.

There is an article on detachment on this site. Look on the forums page. You'll find it.

All of us deal with guilt. All of us are sometimes sad. Many of us are fearful. But day by day despite these emotions we learn to put the focus back on our own well-being, and in this way we support our adult children to live their own autonomous, real lives, in the way that they can. Little by little we embrace that this is the right thing to do.
Last edited:


Well-Known Member
Thanks for sharing. It is brave to share.

Your son is doing what he is doing and you cant change him or make him be the person we all hope our kids become when they are young and we have so much more control over them. Your son is an adult now, making decisions that you can't control. Even if he is mentally young or mentally ill, society sees him as a 26 year old adult capable of doing better. He probably is capable of doing better, but at this point he doesn't want to make an effort. One day he may get clean.

Yesterday is history,
Tomorrow is a mystery.

I hope you make a strong effort to care for yourself first now, since you can change you. Sending prayers
Last edited:

overcome mom

Active Member
I too have a son who has been in prison. Being in for five years is a long time and can really change them sometimes for the better and sometimes for the worse. One of the most difficult things is when they get out they have nothing . In the state my son was in they only gave them $50 and the clothes they were wearing when they got let out. Was your son's situation different? Where did he go to live after he got out? I also was wondering what kind of contact you had with him while he was locked up? Did you think he may be different now than when he went in? It is so very sad to see them living on the streets. I know where we live that there are not many homeless shelters and they really don't let people stay for very long. Hard to give you some ideas without knowing more. I do know the pain you feel . Thanks for writing