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What would you do?

I am a 56 year old mother, married for 35 years, with twin grown sons, they always seem to need things. One lives with the mother of one of his kids he has 3 kids and struggles financially and I keep giving money with their constant requests and babysitting which takes up most of my time as they can't afford babysitters, they really do need the help financially but it is hard to keep helping them.

The other twin is living at home now and keeps moving back home, he is now working full time again, was downsized at previous job and working towards moving out, but he has a drinking problem which does not affect his job as he only drinks on off days, but he causes stress in the house when he drinks.

I love my sons but I am at wits end and totally stressed and with them, mentally and financially. I have systemic lupus and the stress of it all is starting to aggravate my illness. I can't seem to stop helping them and I feel sorry for their situations and feel if I don't help or keep allowing the one to come home something bad may happen to them and then I will really feel bad, I worry about them all the time.

My husband is also at wits ends, and has been threatening to put the son living at home out of the house with no place else to go at this point.

Help, anyone have thoughts to share or words of wisdom? All and any comments are encouraged. Thanks a Bunch.


Asked by 1coffeeplease at 3:00 AM on Jan. 21, 2011 in Adult Children (18+)

Level 4 (31 Credits)
This question is closed.
Answers (11)
  • Tough love is the hardest thing about being a parent! It goes against all our instincts to love and nurture our children. I think I became more able to allow my children to stand on their own when someone pointed out to me that God loves his children more than we humans could possibly imagine and yet He allows us to fall and experience the pain of our own mistakes. He doesn't rescue us from the pain even though he loves and forgives. What He knows that we don't is that pain teaches us better than anything else what NOT to do. Every time we fall and get hurt, we learn a lesson that we couldn't have learned any other way. When we save our children from their own actions, we also stop them from learning the lesson that their actions would teach. Therefore, they continue to do the same things over and over again. What is going to happen to them when we are no longer there to rescue them? What would God do? Questions to ponder.

    Answer by mamahartt at 12:54 PM on Jan. 22, 2011

  • Sometimes harsh love is best. I think it's time to cut their financial reliance on you. I also think it's time for the grown son to move out.

    No offense at all to you, but you two need to worry about yourself and handle yourself. The last thing you want is to drain yourselves completely dry. Assuming you are retired, that could really make or break you. Best of wishes.

    Answer by Anonymous at 3:13 AM on Jan. 21, 2011

  • I would talk wih both of your sons. Give the one living at home a list of house rules and a set date for him to move out. Let the other son know that you love him and his children but you just cant do this anymore. I feel your pain I have autoimmunes and had to tell my stepson I cant watch his two kids everyday anymore. Its okay to set limits with our adult children who continue to make bad doesnt make you a bad parent. It makes you smart in saying enough is enough :). Good Luck momma.

    Answer by mistynights234 at 6:48 AM on Jan. 21, 2011

  • You have to quit giving them money that you cannot afford to give them! They are adults and need to stand up on their own or even fall on their own. While throwing someone that isn't quite on his feet out of the house is harsh, you can tell him that he needs to hit an employment agency or temp agency and start working. He also needs to be in either Counseling or AA. And you should also look in to Al-Anon for your self.
    Your other twin - he's the one that had 3 children - quit giving him money - provide free babysitting, but only when they absolutely need it, like for work. He needs to figure out how to provide for the children he created. You provided for your children when they were young. It is now time for them to provide for themselves.
    This from a fellow mother of adult twins. I have one married who is in college part time and working part time. The other is looking for a full time job while temping.

    Answer by twinsplus2more at 12:23 PM on Jan. 21, 2011

  • Hon, I just had my fill of this same problem. Do you remember the drug abuse program that says, "Just say no!"? Well, that's what we have to start doing. It's hard but once you start and stick to it it feels so good! At our grown childrens ages they need to be on their own. And forcing them to be is the best thing we can do - for them and for US! My 84 year old Mom told me best...she said "if you keep handing your hand out to them they'll keep taking from you". So now I just say "no". "No, I don't have the money, no, I don't have the time, no, I'm not going to be available, no, not today, no, not tomorrow - NO!" And for us we have to tell ourselves something too...No guilt! We've done our part to get them to be adults. Now it's time for them to act like adults. Right? ♥

    Answer by remomingit at 10:14 PM on Jan. 21, 2011

  • I think you are right, I have to be strong and stop worrying about doing that. Thank you so much for sharing

    Comment by 1coffeeplease (original poster) at 3:40 AM on Jan. 21, 2011

  • i also have 2 grown kids, 20 and 21. my son is self-sufficent (Army) but i do have to help my daughter with emergencys (car repairs, medical visits) no grandkids are involved. i think sometimes we create little monsters out of motherly love and then they turn into big monsters with spouses and little ones. it will never end for you unless YOU change. i would not make suden changes. no throwing people out of home. i would sit down with your hubby and decide on a plan for both boys, weaning them off your support. then sit down with each individually and tell them what the plan is. then DO IT! i'd never be able to allow my grandkids to do without and i once heard on a Dave Ramsey show him give advice on this. we will never allow kids to go hungry and if the parents lose their home we offer the KIDS a place to stay, the adults are to be self sufficent. look into Dave Ramsey's advice on older kids. good luck to you.

    Answer by lillie70 at 9:19 AM on Jan. 21, 2011

  • I know this answer you are not gonna like, but listen... in my opinion , you try your best and work so much for this kids, gave them education and raised them well...but enough is enough ... u got to show them tough love... give them a time to get out of your place and learn the word of noo..when they ask you something to do or want , say noo.... they might not like you and they might not even call you or go to see you.. but they have to learn to be on their own....

    Answer by clarasusana at 2:00 PM on Jan. 21, 2011

  • Main thing .You need to take care of your self. If you don"t look out for your self no one else will. Your son that lives with mom and dad needs to try a little harder. Your life does not have a swinging door attached. Stay or go but you make a responsible final decision.


    Answer by Linda702 at 6:41 PM on Jan. 21, 2011

  • I would stop giving them money...they will find a way to get through..I know I have been in their place before. As far as watching their kids/your grandchildren is a hard one for me to answer because I don't have any grandchildren yet. Since they can't afford to pay for a babysitter they need to re-think their plans or do something that they can bring their child. You need to make yourself unavailable...find something to do with your husband or even some friends. I am not sure how to handle a son with a drinking problem.

    Answer by mcarlson94 at 2:11 AM on Jan. 22, 2011