So apparently he is coming home on Wednesday

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by welcometowitsend, Apr 30, 2012.

  1. This has been the weirdest ride with difficult child. Quick recap: He moved out a month ago (he's 16 yr. old) and moved in with girlfriend and her parents. Ugh. Has accused husband and I of almost every kind of abuse imaginable. This is after months of disrespect from him, and not following rules.

    Last Wednesday he wants to meet with me to talk so I go meet him and we have a good discussion about regrets, etc. and how and where we want to go from here. He says that he wants to come home at some point but wants to talk to his counsellor at school about whether it is a good idea for him to move back in before we get some family counselling. He seems very genuine, remorseful, caring, wants to work this out. Ok, so I leave it at that.

    Saturday/Sunday night at 1:30am I get an email from him saying things are stressful between difficult child and girlfriend, he thinks it would be better for his relationship with girlfriend and his relationship with us if he comes home asap. He also says his counsellor thought he should come home asap as well. So, I'm concerned but happy because I really do want this to work and we want him to come home and get himself together so he can have a good future.

    We take him and girlfriend out for dinner yesterday to talk about when he's coming home. Now he's decided, after discussing it with girlfriend, that he's going to come home on a 'trial basis' starting on Wednesday. But he's not going to come home on Wednesday until after he's hung out with his friends. Weird and manipulative, right? If he's only packing a backpack full of clothes and toiletries then he could have come home last night - so why leave it until Wednesday - makes no sense to me.

    I really don't like his attitude and now husband and I are starting to question why we want him back home so badly. The entire meal he was flippant, goofy, never asked about his sister (she stayed home because she was sick), never asked how any of the family was. He also admitted to stealing $5 of pledge money from his 30-hour famine pledge because he only needed $50 in pledges to do it and he had $55. Ugh. He thought it was funny - I think it is sick. I will never pledge this kid again - never getting money from me for anything. Every time I see or talk to him he makes sure I know he doesn't have any money. I just ignore him. The other night he asked husband and I to lend him some money so he could give girlfriends parents money for room and board. No. If husband and I decide to give the 'rescuers' any money it will go directly to them and he won't see it.

    I'm very leary. I have a suspicion he has some other plans and he is only coming home to bide his time until he can put his plans into place. He was still talking last week of getting his own place and moving in with difficult child friend. Since then I have discovered that he has another difficult child friend that is a foster child and is almost 18 - so when he turns 18 he'll have to get his own place. I checked his FB from his sister's account and there is still conversation going on about them getting a place together. difficult child friend #1 doesn't come back to the area until the end of June and the foster child doesn't turn 18 for several months.
    I have a feeling that girlfriends parents want him out because he eats too much and he's getting expensive (we haven't given them a dime), not to mention they are going through a divorce. He might just be coming home for a while until his difficult child friends get their acts together and they can try to find a place. They might have to wait until foster child turns 18 because the my difficult child and the other one are only 16 and can't legally sign a lease.

    I guess the reason we are having him home is because we want to try to make this work. Regardless of the outcome I want to be able to look back in 20 years and say I did everything I could to make this work with him and for him. Know what I mean?? So, husband and I have a plan. We will be calm and cool. We will allow him to suffer the natural consequences of most of his actions (i.e. don't go to school - you will fail). If his actions disturb the peace in our household (and it has been very peaceful the last month) then we will implement consequences. If he can't deal with that then he will have to go.

    We will continue the counselling for a while yet - with him and without him.

    Because we don't trust him we will also be letting him know that when we go to our RV park for the weekends he will either have to come with us or find somewhere to stay for the weekends. The only worry I have here is that if he starts spending weekends away from home this summer he will likely start using drugs or alcohol as well. To my knowledge he is not using (I had him drug tested about 7 weeks ago).
    How would you handle this?
  2. DaisyFace

    DaisyFace Love me...Love me not

    Sounds to me like he has worn out his welcome at the girlfriend's house and doesn't have anywhere to go...

    I'm sure that moving back home is the LAST place he wants to be - which is why he is trying so hard "to have his cake and eat it too" by stipulating that it is only a trail basis and he needs to hang out with his friends first. If I were you - I think I might just turn the tables on him. Tell him, NO! If he's coming home, it's going to have to be under your rules - otherwise, he may as well stay at girlfriend's house. (After all - he didn't come right out and tell you he is no longer welcome there - he wants you to think he is doing you a HUGE favor by sleeping under your roof.) But that's just me....

    Let us know how you decide to play it!
  3. keista

    keista New Member

    Ditto DF. It sounded almost as if he was setting the terms for him coming home. He's coming home? No hanging out with friends first, you want him home right after school - he's got lots of chores to catch up on!

    Remember YOU get to set the rules and stipulations, not him.

    Way to stay strong with the money thing. I agree if it's gonna get paid it gets paid directly to the 'rescuers' He's proven he can't be trusted with money at all with that pledge thing. Seriously, kids seem to have no concept of boundaries these days. This is simply stuff you don't go around bragging to your parents about!
  4. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    Your house, your rules. When he is the adult AND paying the bills, he can set the rules. Untl he pays ALL household bills, not just pays rent to you once he turns 18, he cannot set rules or buck them. Period. Don't like it? Don't come home. Don't care what the therapist says. Many therapists have goofy ideas about lettng kids negotiate rules or have things their way. THis is NOT reality - the world doesn't give a dang if he likes the rules. The world just wants him to pay his way and follow the rules or go to jail/prison. Period.

    Let him stay in discomfort at girlfriend's house for a while and BEG to come home before you let him. Until her parents THROW him out and he has been homeless a day or two in the park, he won't appreciate home.
  5. Thank you for the responses! I agree that he is likely only coming home because his girlfriend's parents are tired of him. He told me last week they had sort of given him 2 weeks to get his act together. He also told me in the same conversation that if he needed to stay with them until the end of June he could do that too. ????? Well, which is it.

    Anyway, husband and I really like the counsellor. She is good. Fair but firm. She agrees that we are entitled to run our home the way we see fit and our rules apply - no explaining or justification necessary. I like that. Don't think difficult child will but that's too bad for him.

    I think he feels like he has the control here when in fact he doesn't. I'm just letting him show me who he is and I'm believing him. For example - he stole the money from the pledges for the 30 Hour Famine. He thinks its funny - I think he's never getting any more money from me and I'd better make sure nobody leaves any money laying around the house or he'll steal it.

    Keista - you are so right about kids not having boundaries. difficult child doesn't - nothing seems to embarrass him. He went out for dinner last night with his aunts, cousins, my parents and my husband and I and didn't seem the least big ashamed of his previous behaviour or the situation that our family is in right now. If I was him I would have been mortified if I knew that they were aware of what had happened.

    As for the rules - he has agreed to the rules that we had set out before he left - so I guess I just have to take him at face value and believe him until he proves otherwise. One thing I did compromise with was the cell phone. We had taken it away from him because he ran the bill up to $260 one month and $140 in 2 other months - 3 strikes. Anyway, I agreed to let him carry the phone when he is out with friends so that he has no excuse not to get in touch with me and let me know where he is and no excuses for being late either. Otherwise the cell phone will be in my possession. So he only gets the cell phone when I need to be able to get in touch with him - I don't care if he has it to talk to his friends. And it will NOT be locked with a passcode of any sort. I pay that bill.

    Other than that husband and I have agreed to treat him more like a young adult (which he is) living in our home. Right now he probably thinks that is great - what he's going to find out is that he will have much more responsibility put on him and yet will still have to answer to us for inappropriate behaviour and disrespect. Might be a wake up call for him. :)
  6. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    Sounds like you have a plan. Just be super double darn sure to follow through with anything and everything you say - every time. It is very helpful to practice just saying no or whatever your response is to his complaints/badgering/demands. Find a phrase that is acceptable to you and practice it over and over - in the car, in a mirror, etc... until it is comfortable. I think there s a list of such phrases in the PE archives or SA archives. Someone else will know.

    Also sit down with husband and work out what the consequence for violating each rule/expectation/responsibility so that you know (and you and husband have it written down) ahead and do not have to figure it out in the heat of the moment. Parenting Your Teen with Love and Logic is a book that I think you will find super helpful. You can find it at or at most bookstores/ebay/amazon/alibris.
  7. Thank you Susie for the book recommendation - I am going to hit the bookstore today to see if I can find it - if not I'll order it.

    You always have good advice! I will definitely sit down with husband and discuss consequences in advance and make difficult child aware of them.
  8. buddy

    buddy New Member

    I sure hope this works out for you. (and of course ultimately for him, we can get upset etc...but bottom line is we love them and really just want them to grow up with good character and to be able to be decent people/take care of themselves responsibly, right?) For the cell, why not for him, just switch to a track phone or something with only talk minutes or talk/text if you prefer... then when the minutes are gone they are gone. Even if you have to cancel a phone or part of a plan you will likely come out ahead because you know it is probably just a matter of time before you get a big charge again.

    I am shocked by the tone of his rules too...yikes. I hear it all the time... I will only do this if you just let up and give me my way kind of talk. Of course that is not allowed (which then ends in verbal and at times physical aggression) and it is not like I don't compromise etc. but he is so like a toddler, wants what he wants and when he wants it. UGGG, so exhausting. I still have hope though, and I know you do too. So sending you huge hugs and support, let us know how the move goes!
  9. Bunny

    Bunny Guest

    I'm a little late to the party, but I have to say that I agree with what the others have told you. It's your house and you make the rule. Don't like it? Don't come home! And make sure that he knows that from the very beginning. If you think it would help, make a contract so that there are not questions about what is expected, both from him and what he can expect from you. This way it's all written down in black and white. There are no questions. No gray area.

    I would be very wary of his motives, though. He had no problems telling people that you and your husband were abusive to him, but now that the girlfriend's parents a getting tired of having him around he's willing to forget all about that? Sorry, but if my difficult child did something like that I would have a very hard time getting back to trusting him again.
  10. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Ditto what the others said. He has worn out his welcome. And that they're going through a divorce only makes it more stressful on them. Sigh. I guess he keeps the girlfriend occupied so she doesn't get so depressed about the divorce. I don't know.
    Is this the same counselor at school who believed all of his bs? Or a different one, whom you like?
    Anyway, I'm glad you like the counselor at this point.
    Fingers crossed. Be strong!