27 answers

How Can I Indirectly Get My Adult Son and His Loser Girlfriend to Break Up?

My son has been seeing a woman who is lazy, sloppy, doesn't work, and rarely bathes. She is a parasite that just uses him for the money he spends on her. She has attached herself to everything he does, and he now believes they have so much "in common". Our entire family and extended family can't stand her. I know talking to him about it won't help and may push him closer to her. So, I need some brainstorming for ideas, no matter how unethical, to get one or both of them to want to break up. Again, no ethical barriers here, just nothing illegal.

1 mom found this helpful

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I don't want to come off as a horrible person. I've been a straight arrow my whole life, and my son has no idea how I or the rest of the family feels about this woman. We've included her in all family events and have been very generous with her on her birthday and Christmas. There have been a couple of times he has said he wanted to break up with her, but the feeling passes. He's spent thousands of dollars on her, and only makes a little above minimum wage. She would ruin his life, and he can't see it because she's only his 3rd girlfriend. The disregard of ethics is the extreme I'm willing to go to protect him. He is an adult, but I can't just sit here with the attitude that he'll make his bed and he'll sleep in it. I was hoping for ideas rather than judgement.

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The only thing I can suggest is you tell him. I dated someone for 2 years my family hated and they never said a word. I wasn't truly happy but convinced myself I was and if they had been truthful with me, even if I would have initally been defensive I may have been saved a lot of pain! If you are concerned he won't hear you out or that you'll say something you don't mean, write him a letter. Pen to paper and give it to him.

And if after that he still doesn't listen trust him. Know that you raised a great man and that he'll ultimately do what's right! Whatever you don't be honest and loving and you'll be a person he can respect and love!

Good luck!

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We don't have much background about how old or mature he is, or what is your relationship with her. It may seem strange but here is my advice: Be her best friend. Shower her with love and attention (but not money). Talk to her. Remember what she likes and dislikes, her birthday...
Possible outcomes:
1) your son, as someone suggested, dates her to test you or as a late teen rebellion: he will break up because you are friends.
2) if your son doesn't feel any bad feelings anymore will not feel the need to overprotect her, be less defensive and may see her as she is, and break up
3) you may discover why he loves her and begin to really appreciate her and understand why she behaves the way she does.

It's also good to talk to your son (not being judgmental, but open, positive, caring) about what he likes in her, why he loves her, the (hidden) qualities she has...

But, as the other posts say, lying or being unethical will sure backfire.

3 moms found this helpful

Here are 2 suggestions:

(1) Don't say anything. Criticism will only drive your son further into her arms. Seriously. People cling tighter to partners their parents criticize.

(2) Be nice to her. Once your son feels that his girlfriend is accepted, he'll be more likely to think for himself and end the relationship.

Cheers!

2 moms found this helpful

If your son is an adult it really isn't any of your business who he dates. Therefore it isn't your job to break them up. If she really is as terrible as you say she is maybe he eventually see it for himself and dump her.

2 moms found this helpful

Dawn B. makes a great point, in trying to drive her away at what cost to your relationship to your son. Also, what about asking questions: watch your tone when you ask too, ask with interest like you really do want to know and care:
What do you like most about her?
What does she do that makes you feel special?
What do you feel you are getting out of the relationship?
Is this a person you feel you could spend your life with? If so why?
What do you enjoy doing together? What do you have in common?
Some things we do to our kids is point out the direction the person is going and ask if this is what they want for their future. Do you want to be able to do this? Do you think you will be able to have the same lifestyle you are used to with this person? If not, are you willing/happy to accept that change? We also say we like so and so, because we do, but we want to know if you are able to handle the differences in beliefs/attitudes/morals/behaviors or whatever it is that they differ in. Your situation is different in that your son is already old enough to make his own decisions. The best thing you can do is also the hardest thing have faith that he will eventually see the situation for what it is and that he is smart enough to make the right choice for his life, and accept his decisions.
Often, as parents I realize the biggest mistake I make is not trusting my kids enough as they are sorting through things. They are still learning and maturing daily and with that comes better decision making. I can't believe how much a year makes a difference in how much better their decisions become.

Take care and please don't do anything you'll regret. Life is too short to worry about other people's problems, that is what has caused so many heartaches in my life, worrying about what others are doing and /or what I think they should be doing, Who am I to say and judge. I have enough of my own things/issues I can worry about. I know taking things one day at a time is really helping me.

I will be praying for you, I am sorry you are going through this. It is hard to watch our kids make what we feel our bad decisions, but if we let them fall they will most likely learn a good lesson from the situations. The hard part is letting go enough to let them make their own mistakes.
Take care and God Bless,
K.

1 mom found this helpful

There's not much you can do. What ever you do, resist the temptation to bad mouth her or your son will jump to her defense. You CAN mention how well other couples your son's age are doing. Things like they had a wonderful vacation/cruise/trip to where ever (that they could afford since they both work), but don't be too obvious about it. If the girlfriend is truly the parasite you say she is, the only thing that would make her want to move on voluntarily would be to introduce her to a better meal ticket than your son is. Gold diggers will drop an old beau like a hot potato when they find a better host to clamp onto but you might have a hard time finding someone to take her on. I know you are willing to bend over backwards to save your son, but doing anything unethical could backfire badly on you.

1 mom found this helpful

Just give her the link to this question. She'll surely go running for the hills when she sees what kind of a Mother-in-Law she's going to end up with.

If that doesn't work, you could try checking with local law enforcement to see if she has any outstanding warrants (you'd be surprised at how many people do). If she does, simply provide the police with her current wherabouts and things might take care of themselves. Then again, your son might just end up bailing her out with some of his hard-earned cash....

Honestly, I don't think there are really any options available to you that wouldn't end up in a major backfire. So I would just back off, if I were you. Talk to him (as one adult to another) if you wish, sharing your concerns WITHOUT sounding petty (i.e. insulting her hygiene)...but don't make any ultimatums. Because if you force your son to pick between his girlfriend and his mother, you might not be happy with his decision.

-S.

P.S.

1 mom found this helpful

I can maybe understand you feeling bad that your son's girlfriend is no good. As a mom , you want the best for your son.
But how is it ok to do something unethical to split them up? If you do something illegal , you will be punished by law of course. But how are you going to face yourself or your son (if he finds out) by doing something unethical?
Try talking to him and maybe he will trust you and start seeing things clearly. If you are so sure that you talking to him / interfering in any way will push him closer to her , then I guess you need to handle it carefully.If you know your son already doesn't care much for your opinions , he will definitely hate you for doing anything unethical.

1 mom found this helpful

Wow, no matter how unethical? The reason he is still with her is probably because he knows how much you all cannot stand her, and it's his passive/aggressive way of fighting your treating him like a child when he's an adult. Let him go, and let him make his own mistake. Unethical behavior could lose the girlfriend, but could also lose your son to you in the long run. It isn't worth it if your son decides he wants nothing to do with his unethical family.
D.

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