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When to put my foot down...should I?

I have an 18 yr old son. He's a bright kid, but lacks common sense God Gave a goose(my father said the same thing about me at his age...go figure) Anyway, he doesn't pay any rent living here, nor did he finish school, he doesn't have a job that gives him a weekly paycheck, and he eats the food and uses my puter and he and my other kids father(i'm divorced) do not get along very well.

I am torn between putting my foot down and telling him to get a job and do something constructive with his life or move out. But that mom side of me that loves him dearly, would feel bad if God-forbid something should happen to him because I told him that. Am I being unreasonable in asking him to do these things? I don't want it to seem like i'm doing this because of my SO(we have issues too and i'm working on getting a job, going back to school, moving out etc..) so should i wait til i'm on my own or start putting my foot down now.

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Asked by CinderAmethyst at 11:52 AM on Jan. 23, 2010 in Adult Children (18+)

Level 4 (30 Credits)
Answers (13)
  • I guess my real question here is too how long would you let your child stay with you if you are in a similar situation?

    I mean if he was going to college, or working a job and trying to save money it'd be one thing, but I don't want to come off as a "mean mother". He's had a really hard childhood(father absent, no real male role model and i'm part to blame too here)

    Please no bashing, just some good constructive advice. Thanks. :)

    Answer by CinderAmethyst at 11:54 AM on Jan. 23, 2010

  • its not to late to show him tough love..bottom line, your house-your rules. I think you should tell him to either get a job, get a degree or move out. That is teaching him responsibility.

    Answer by nsrush83 at 11:59 AM on Jan. 23, 2010

  • Our 19 year old daughter, not get a job or continue her education she just wanted to party and have fun.  She would tell me, "mom these are the best years of my life".  It has always been difficult to say no to her she is our first born child.  Our daughter always knew how to work us and get her way.  Her father and I sat her down gave her the rules we always had for her.  This time we followed through, no JOB no cellular phone, no JOB no spending money.  We stopped buying our daughter stuff taking her places (she does not drive) and feeding into her drama.  It was difficult but how was she going to be responsible if we did not make her?? Our daughter is now working, moved out with her boyfriend (very difficult to let her go) and is being responsible!


    Answer by mommiedear at 12:18 PM on Jan. 23, 2010

  • Just keeping the current economy in mind, I'd give him a nice long time period to get things figured out with a definate date that he has to have *whatever* or he needs to find different room and board. Would you be fine with him staying on rent free if he were actively engaged in schooling? If he finds a job does he need to pay rent and how much would that be? And, lastly if he doesn't do anything make sure you're up to following through on your ultimatum.

    Answer by IrishMommaC at 12:21 PM on Jan. 23, 2010

  • My house is always open to my kids, free of rent, but I would encourage education and a job to at least pay his way, guiding him along in the right direction. But I will not tolerate anyone of them taking advantage of my generosity, they would have to at least succeed at something.

    Answer by older at 12:28 PM on Jan. 23, 2010

  • Thank you for the advice ladies. I'm just so torn as what to do. Ugh! I always heard "it doesnt get any easier as they get older" i understand why. LOL

    Answer by CinderAmethyst at 1:39 PM on Jan. 23, 2010

  • I recently went through the same thing............I had a 20 year old and 18 year old that still lived at home. The 20 year old--no job, has a girlfriend that is pregnant, wouldn't help around the house, nothing. The 18 year old--has a full time job, buys groceries for the house or helps pay utility bills, pays own bills such as cell phone and car insurance, and helps out with whatever needs done around the house. Both boys were raised the same and have the same dad. I finally had enough with the 20 year old and gave him two weeks to find a job or get out. Needless to say, he didn't believe that I would ever kick him out. He no longer lives here and resents that we continue to allow his brother to live here. Like I told him, it's time to grow up and become a real man. Or at least try like his brother is doing.

    Answer by sumtinsassy at 1:49 PM on Jan. 23, 2010

  • Wow. I have not been faced with that and am not sure how I would handle it. We are pretty strict about working here. We expected our sons to get jobs when they were in the 11th grade & they were expected to maintain 3.2+ GPA's (nothing lower), play sports & to do community service ON TOP of working no less than 12 hours a week. The older 2 were raised pre-cell phones but they paid for their own clothes & social activities. The younger 2 are 18 and 20 and they paid for their own cell phones, car insurance, clothes, social activities and put gas in their cars. We raised boys to become men, not males who remained boys in to their 20's. Parents should raise their children to be strong, independent adults who want their own space, homes and lives. Mine learned to pay bills and budget at 16-17 years old and they thank us for that. Do your son a favor and make him get a job and become a man.

    Answer by Anonymous at 4:11 AM on Jan. 24, 2010

  • Wow, thanks again for the experiences you've had with your sons. I just have this stinging guilt that i can't move past. Even a friend of mine said the same thing as all of you here. You all are right it's just not easy to do. I HAVE to do it, as I'm about to have a major upheaval in my life ...planning on leaving the guy i'm living with (after seven wasted years) as soon as I get a job. This may sound stupid and like an excuse of sorts, but if we lived in a different city it might be a little easier, but we live in a transient pathetic city here, and it's so dangerous out there.

    Thanks again, I'll keep this discussion open til this evening and then close it down in case anyone else has anything they'd like to share. are blessed, you did well with your boys you should be proud.

    Answer by CinderAmethyst at 5:32 AM on Jan. 24, 2010

  • "But that mom side of me that loves him dearly, would feel bad if God-forbid something should happen to him because I told him that."

    Ah, but you're forgetting the bad things that can happen by allowing him to live at home and do nothing and mooch. The habits that will be instilled in him, the entitlement he will feel, etc. However, doing the right thing is definitely not always easy when it comes to our children.

    Answer by whiteroses82 at 2:35 PM on Jan. 24, 2010

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