March 25, 2008,
M.T. asks from Kihei, HI on March 22, 2008
Disrespect of a Son That Is 21
My 21 yr old lives with me while he is going to Vocational school. I also have a 19 month old. My 21 yr old is mad and he punishes the rest of us in the house hold. For example, the problem is that there are many things in life that he isn't happy with but he is telling me that he is mad because I allow another child (one of his brothers) to park in the garage a few times a week instead of letting him hog the garage 7 days a week. (HE is projecting blame where it doesn't really belong because of other things in his life that he is not happy about.)
He is cursing ALOT and loudly all the time but also when the baby is sleeping. He turns his TV up louder than normal even when the baby is sleeping. He wakes her up alot... more than he knows I am sure. He slams doors, he jerks stuff around, he walks through the house like he is Mr Big and when you talk to him, he just totally ignores you or either gives you the quickest, smartiest, yes or no that he can. I took money out of an edward jones account to help him pay for school. With some of that money in his school fund, i paid his car ins for a yr because he was struggling with money while going back to school. He never one time said thank you or even treated me like he appreciated it. In fact, the attitude that I felt from him was as if I OWED it to him to pay it.
Now he is doing things to his brothers, like instead of asking one of them to move their car so he can park in the garage, he takes a jack and jacks up their car and rolls it back so he can move it to get in the garage. If someone did that to his car he would explode on them. Yet when he does it, it is somehow justified and ok.
Everyone feels like they are walking on egg shells when he is around.
I have taken on a midnight shift job doing work of a 25 yr old muscular male (when I am 47 and not in the shape to do this hard of a job). I took it in order to help these boys out while they are in school and to put food on the table for them. The middle son and the younger son will come home and give up their own time to watch the baby for me so I can sleep since I rarely get more than 3 hr/night before I have to go back to work. The 21 yr old never helps out with watching the baby so I can sleep, he never helps with house work, he never bothers to help out with bills or even groceries. The middle son makes WAY Less than the older one does and he will stop and bring pizza home for everyone even when he doesn't have the money to spend. The 21 yr old acts like we all owe this to him ..... I often wonder where I went wrong. I know that part of it is genes and hereditary as his dad would never do anything for anybody unless it benefitted himself.
But how would you handle the situation and what would you say to him. He is so inconsiderate and unappreciative that it is driving me crazy. I do have to be careful about what I say and how I say it because I don't want him to get mad and leave because he really needs to stay in school so he can get out. Without help, like a place to live, he can't do it, yet he is not appreciative. If I make him made, he is hard headed and he would live on the streets just to show me he can and to make me feel guilty.
How do I handle this situation and what do I say to him.??????
Thanks for all of the advice in advance.
K.M. answers from Nashville on March 23, 2008
I would say use TOUGH LOVE> Kick his butt out and let him experience real life.
Do not let him ruin your new life.
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L.S. answers from Nashville on March 23, 2008
And you are allowing him to live with you because... You must stand up for the rights of you and your family. No one needs to be in an abusive situation whether it is a mate or another member of the family. You must tell him that unless he lives in a congenial atmosphere with the entire family, he must find another place to live. NO one needs to endure this behavior any longer. Whether he is a child, a teen or an 8 year old. The pack leader (and if you don't know who that is watch Cesar Milan on the National Geographic channel) or leader of the house must have all members follow their lead. You do not need to yell or scream obscenities. Simply state house rules and anyone that doesn't want to follow those rules is free to move out. Your family deserves that and your son is a MAN now, he is telling you that in so many words. I know it is hard to say to your son, GET OUT! (I have three grown sons and a daughter) but it is for the good of the entire pack (or family). Strengthen that backbone and be the woman you need to be for the good of the family. If your son is having emotional/psychological issues then you must tell him that in order to be a part of the family, he must get into counseling and sometimes it is up to the entire family to stand behind this..or he must move on down the road. Keep telling this young man that you love him, he is important to you and that you want the best for him, but there is an entire family to consider and he is not the only member. If he wants to be a part of the family, then he must fall into the routine of your family life, if not, he must leave. Be firm. Even if he leaves in a temper and tells you he hates all of you. Smile sympathetically, tell him you are sorry, you love him, but he is not following house rules. Once he is gone, do not spend your days feeling guilty, that is negative. Smile at the rest of the family, insist everyone follows the rules and continue to let your 21 year old know you care about him. Once he understands you mean business, he will either fall into line or he will find his place in his own life and all will be well. Sometimes, they will do things you don't approve of. This is their time to find out who they are...Pray for him, but do not let him disrupt everyone's life. You are in control M., not the children. You must take control of the situation or he will continue to run your life and make everyone miserable. Set up a chart that gives your children certain rules, chores and expectations you have. If they cannot follow, there will be penalties. Even the youngest can help to pick up toys, put trash in the trash can and help you. Moms cannot do it all and shouldn't have to. Don't wait until you cannot stand it anymore and then blow like a volcano. Be calm, assertive and stand by the choices you make. Reward only good behavior and for God's sake don't ignore bad behavior. Give your children consequences. Good luck and I'll keep you in my prayers. God Bless..P.S. Motherhood is a great blessing and I , too, had my last two children later than the first two. Your son, seems to be acting out in an abusive fashion and needs to deal with it. You do NOT need to deal with it. It's time for him to handle his life anyway he wants but not in your house.
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C.F. answers from Nashville on March 25, 2008
I have raise a son to the age of 22 and we went through some very difficult times. As much as this may sound strange, I had to practice tough love. I had him leave my home when he was going through that stage.
It sounds like your son is either doing drugs or he has some type of mental disorder. My ex-husband, his brother and nephews all were into drugs and had some mental problems which were untreated with normal meds.
I suggest you get him evaluated to determine if he does have a medical condition. If so, there are medications that can help - if he takes them. If not, he simply needs to get out and learn that he is responsible for his actions and you don't owe him a thing.
Good luck. I will pray for you.
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J.S. answers from Atlanta on March 23, 2008
Protect your other kids FIRST! They can't protect themselves. Kick him out and give your other children a chance before they resent you for allowing him to make their lives miserable. Talk to your other two older kids and see how they feel. Your 21 year old is being a butthole and needs to grow up. Life kicking him around a bit may be the only way to teach him that.
I'm not saying this will be easy, but he needs to learn to appreciate gifts and act like a man instead of a spoiled rotten brat. Your younger children are your fisrt responsibility.
With love, J.
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