Recovering is helping me stay the course regarding enabling in a post on Watercooler. I am going to post that question here too, because that is the essential question with kids like ours and I need to hear your answers and opinions. Thank you in advance. Before beginning the discussion: husband and I enable one another to enable the kids. Is this happening to you, and how do you deal with that? It seems wrong to complain about helping your own kids. Though we don't give alot all at once, it adds up really fast. Since husband retired and I stopped working twelve years ago, we have been bled regularly and have nothing at all to show for that money. We have learned to live in a kind of fearful expectation of what the next crisis will be. Part of the reason we do this is to keep the kids from coming to live at home. I feel a little shame at that. It seems we should help. I know that other parents welcome their children home for as long as they need to be there. They have come home before though, and I am so fricking glad they do not still live with us it isn't even funny. They are overwhelming, their problems are overwhelming, never-ending, totally engrossing. **** I understand the concept of detachment. I know what I want to do regarding the kids, but I cannot make myself do it. When we say no, we don't stay with that position. The money gets to seem inconsequential compared to the dire consequences ~ or the threat of the adult moving home, which would be the gold ring for both my kids. The thing is that the money adds up, it is never enough, and no matter how much we give, it never does anything more than prevent the immediate bad thing. There is always another, even worse bad thing, around the corner. And that is why the kids say we do not give enough. When husband and I do tell them no (as we told difficult child daughter no regarding renting a hotel room for she and the bad man during a blizzard last winter when she was homeless ~ and we still are not hearing the end of that one), we suffer as much as the kids do. It is hard to remember that they had the option of a shelter and did not choose to use it. Whatever resolve we had crumbles when the kids need something to prevent what really are dire consequences, or to get themselves back on their feet after (yet another) setback. **** How do you handle the accusations that you are uncaring parents? I don't even mean what do you say to the kids, I am asking what you tell yourselves and each other about that. I am thinking you will say that is a manipulation and that we have to see beyond it. It so sucks though, never to have anyone home for the holidays, never to have all those things that everyone else seems to have. Perhaps, they did not enable their kids. **** Verbal abuse we know about, from MWM post on that subject. It is so easy for me to spot it and advise someone else. When I finally got that, and told difficult child son that the last money he got was the last he was going to get...he asked for money without dishing out quite as many bad words. As I continue to refuse, giving him numbers for social organizations set up to help him, he has switched tactics, and begun asking for money to prevent his eviction and pay his light bill quite politely. (As opposed to the usual sort of you never do anything for me, you guys are dysfunctional, and it is your fault that I am where I am, which is desperate moments from total annihilation.) Sometimes, I figure things out pretty well just posting about it and seeing what I wrote. The above would be one indication of that. If you have been accused of this, how do you handle the "There is something wrong with our family. It is dad, or it is you mom, that set me up for the kind of life I am living." Those are my primary concerns. Please add anything you know to have been helpful to you. Cedar P.S. This morning, husband wants to give difficult child son the money.