Single parent with adult child

Discussion in 'Substance Abuse' started by SingleDad47, Oct 8, 2012.

  1. SingleDad47

    SingleDad47 New Member

    I am a single dad with a 19 year old son living with me. I just found out he is smoking pot and is drinking. He is pretty good so far at covering his tracks because I have not found any physical evidence, noticed any change or smelled anything. I know he is doing these things because he is posting pictures and I just happened to find the postings. Not real sure what to do. I have never used any of these things...
  2. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    First off, what is his behavior like at home. Is he respectful? Does he go to college or have a job? As the mother of an ex-substance abuser, I tend to go by whether the adult child is doing it once in a while or all the time so that it makes them lie, steal, abuse us, flunk out of life etc. My daughter's life was such a disaster that I truly wondered if she'd end up in prison or dead. Are you sure your son isn't doing more than just smoking pot?

    Having said that, you can tell him he can't live with you while doing illegal activities. You can cut out the money you give him too.

    Whatever the case, your son is very foolish to post this on the internet as employers check these things when hiring somebody these days.
  3. Nancy

    Nancy Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I would start by having a conversation with him and asking him about it. You really don't have any idea how much he is smoking or drinking at this point and even if it is a concern or just a phase trying to fit in. Is he working or going to school? If you haven't noticed anything different about him then this is probably not something that will be a huge problem. But, and this is a big but, you need much more information about what is going on and so do we in order for us to even talk about your concerns. How are his friends? Are you concerned about who he is hanging around with and what they are doing? Are these the same friends he has had growing up? How is your relationship? Does he continue to do things with you or does he want to be alone or with his friends? Are his grades slipping if he is in school or is he having problems at work?

    We really need a lot more information about the situation. It could be nothing or it could be the slippery road to serious problems. In any case you are right to be concerned and seek out help.

  4. SingleDad47

    SingleDad47 New Member

    He is in broadcasting school and doing good. He works at mcdonalds and recently they moved him to a trainer so as far as that so far nothing has happened. Based on what I have read this is happening with friends here as well as one or two friends around where he lived with his mom. She and I only live about 45 minutes apart so the commute is easy. My son and I get along good. He works late into the evening usually 5 out of 7 days so his sleep pattern keeps us apart a little.
  5. DaisyFace

    DaisyFace Love me...Love me not

    I think that how you handle this depends upon how you may be affected.

    If your son is going to the occassional party and smoking and drinking once in a while - you may choose to turn a "blind eye".

    If, however, your son is doing anything illegal in your home or driving a car you own and/or insure - you are going to have to lay down the law. He could be putting you at risk legally and financially. Let him know that continuing these behaviors will result in the loss of the car and/or the use of your home.

    Good luck!
  6. Kathy813

    Kathy813 Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I think Daisy is right, many kids at that age smoke pot and drink. Most leave it behind after their college days are over. Unfortunately, there are some like the children of the members of this forum that become addicted and it ruins their lives.

    I suggest that you have a good talk about what you have found out. Point out that if you have seen the pictures, future employers will also be able to see the pictures. I would also make it very clear that you do not support underage illegal activities and that you do not want alcohol or drug use in your house.

    I would also worry about the liability of him driving a car under the influence. Is the car in his name and covered by his own insurance policy?

  7. FlowerGarden

    FlowerGarden Active Member

    Welcome to the board. I agree with what Kathy posted.
  8. SingleDad47

    SingleDad47 New Member

    Well we sat down and talked last night for probably 2 hours. I got myself ready mentally so I would be able to continually tell myself to remain calm and not get overly mad. After all the talk, how he was going to change around the house, consequences if he got caught...etc...the only thing he kept saying was "everyone does it" and "i dont see what the big deal is".......

    He did mention a few times that he is nearly 20 and should be able to make his own decisions. I told him anytime he wanted to he could pack his bags, go find his own place to live, pay his own way and then he could make all his decisions.......I said in this house I will not tolerate.......Then when I ended the conversation as tempers were on the verge of really flaring up (on both sides), he is not sure whether or not I was kicking him out. I left the den and went to my room; when I came out about an hour later he was just sitting there kind of staring not really knowing what to do. I just left it like that so he could think about it over night.......

    Not really sure what to do next...
  9. PatriotsGirl

    PatriotsGirl Guest

    Gosh this is going to sound awful, but, I wish my difficult child's problem was pot. It really does sound like you have a good kid. I envy you. Mine is a homeless drug addict criminal that has been out of the home for over two years and not a dang thing has changed. While you certainly have the right to not allow it in your home, he sounds like a typical teen. I certainly wouldn't throw him out over it. But this is an opinion coming from a mom that has been through sheer hades over the years...
  10. Calamity Jane

    Calamity Jane Well-Known Member

    Hi SingleDad,
    I just want to lend my support to you. It's very good that you tried to stay on point and calm, and you stopped talking when things began to escalate.
    It's a fact that most people at your son's age, and even older post stupid pictures of themselves drinking, smoking, etc. In their world, exhibitionism is a given, and this can be problematic when they decide to search for a grown-up job, etc. They truly don't know what's wrong with this FB activity, as everyone does it, along with the partying lifestyle. If he drives a car, you have every right to be concerned.
    Ultimately, he is an adult being given the privilege of living in your home. I think you need to make sure he knows you love him, and are only interested in what will be best for him in the long run. You are acting like a parent, not a buddy, and he's probably in shock, because hardly anyone does that anymore. Even if you did overreact, and he only does this stuff once in a while, he's keeping good grades, working, etc., he will know that you have limits and perhaps will recognize that it's time to grow up and act like a responsible man. I think you're doing the best you can in a tough situation. FWIW, my husband would have buried his head in the sand and acted like it never happened, and would hope it would just "go away" on its own!
  11. SingleDad47

    SingleDad47 New Member

    Wow....Im sorry about your child........I just want to either get him through this or be able to stand back when he does get into trouble (and if he doesnt stop he will) and say im sorry...i tried everything I you will just have to deal with the consequences........

    Still talking to him when we are home together, but he has blocked me off his online stuff...(facebook and instagram) I know he has not stopped.......I do have a friend that is a sheriff, so may see if I can scare him a little
  12. BKS

    BKS New Member


    God Bless You. My husband and I (going through our own struggles with our son) have said multiple times how difficult it would be to deal with a difficult child as a single parent.

    That said, we thought our son was not doing drugs. In high school we asked him about it and he would say, "NO WAY!". He was drinking, smoking marijuana, had tried sniffing heroin, and ingesting cough syrup. (This is all we know about.) During the time that he was using in high school, he was not making good grades (altho he really never did.)

    It may be an experimentation phase with your son - kind of a right of passage. It doesn't sound like it is worth throwing him out of the house for. I know it is uncomfortable but if the rest of his life is together (and not declining) you may be best to actively watch for any signs of growing use. Just my 2 cents.