Adult children living at home--expectations?

karenjApril 9, 2008

Hi--I have never posted here before, but I'm looking for some advice on handling my 21 y.o. son and 24 y.o. daughter. My daughter has just started her first full time job following college, but the pay is quite low (not enough to move out) The expenses she has is her cell phone, gas money and a repayment on a college loan ($10,000). She is a wonderful person but the problem I have is that her room is a disgusting mess. She won't throw anything away and it's driving me insane. I understand her right to privacy and respect it, however, I feel that as a room in my house, it should be kept clean. My son is not QUITE the slob. He has a job that pays minimum wage. He has no expenses beside gas for the car. He went to college for 2 years, but really didn't like it and didn't do well. He's usually thoughtful and considerate, but he can be quite disrespectful at times, They both get home late (from work) and, it seems to me, that they sleep the rest of the time (I know my son stays awake until 3 or 4, and when he wakes up he's on the computer and/or the phone until about an hour before he has to be at work) I have told them both that they need to earn their keep. So what to do? How do you get adults to live more productive lives at home? I'm sick of being a nag.

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Tell them they have 3 choices.

1) Earn their keep around your house by doing things you ask of them
2) Pay you rent instead of earning their keep (but they still have to treat you with respect and clean up behind themselves)
3) Move out

Plain and simple.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2008 at 5:54PM
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My sons are 18 (almost 19) and 21. They are BOTH slobs and the mess is not confined to their rooms. (well, the 21 year old is sleeping on the couch since his room went to SD when he moved out the first time and his move back is supposed to be temporary, but he's been here six months) I'm also tired of being a nag. I told my 21 year old that he's about to come home to find a box of his stuff on the porch. The last straw was when he brought a girl to stay with him (on the couch) and her laughing woke me up at three AM. (He had come in from work after I went to bed) He's moved back three or four times and kept leaving because he doesn't want to follow my rules. This time, he was following them until a couple of weeks ago, when he started coming home when he felt like it and getting his paycheck and going to his friends until he's broke again. Meanwhile, he expects ME to take him to & from work. He doesn't have a car because the car my DH (not his dad) co signed for him, he totaled and stuck me paying for it. He hasn't given me rent or helped out much (he did mop the floor a couple of times, but says he has to be 'in the mood' to clean house) My biggest problem with him is that he's getting his younger brother to do the same things he's doing. His brother was in college and working and now he's taking one class to save money for next semester but he hasn't saved anything. He & big brother go to their friends and I suspect my older son is buying alcohol for the younger one & friends. I've warned him about going to jail and his responsibility but it isn't doing much good. They both have a deadline to shape up and the older one has to move by the end of May. The other one is talking about moving with him but I hope he doesn't. With big brother gone, he doesn't take off and waste his money. He was doing well in school and I'd like to see him finish. I know if he moves, he won't go back to school.

I know that if my son's room gets so bad, I will give him a deadline to get it clean or I am going to clean it. I then take bags and pretty much everything goes. I give him at least a week notice and I've done it twice. After the second time, he has cleaned it himself on request. I don't know what to say because at 21, I was a single mom to three and when I was 22, I got together with a guy that was a single dad to three with sole custody, so I had six kids in my care and I can't imagine getting to sleep all day. My kids do that too, stay up all night and sleep until right before they have to go to work. On their day off, they say they aren't doing work around the house because it's their day off. They don't realize that 'grown ups' don't get a day off...

Sorry this is more of a rant than helpful advice.... maybe it helps to know there are worse cases than yours??? I don't need advice, I need moving boxes and tape!!!

    Bookmark   April 9, 2008 at 7:16PM
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My DD is 21 and lives in her own apartment with two other girls.

She was complaining to me, yesterday, that the girl that was supposed to clean to kitchen did not do it last week, and this week was my DD turn to clean. She was annoyed because she had two weeks cleaning of the kitchen to do. She asked me what she should do.

I thought to myself, this cleaning deal has come full circle. She was a real slob at home, acted belligerently when asked to tidy up (over many years !). And now, she was complaining to me "its so annoying when people don't clean up after themselves" !!! I couldn't believe what I was hearing ! Of course, the lovely mother I am, I had to hold my tongue, and dutifully advised her on what she should do.

It's curious how these young adults think that when they are are home, they don't have to tidy up after themselves, but if they where out in the world they would pull their weight.

Your solution....Have some house rules, spell them out.

Are they paying you some rent ?

Really the solution is for them to move out, perhaps you could subsidise that.

My brother has his 24 year old daughter living with him, and he complains all the time about her. She pays her sister to come and clean her room on Saturday mornings, and the en-suite bathroom. So that keeps things happy.

They won't be there forever, enjoy the time, there must be good times..try to focus on them.

I wish you well, things can only get better, at least that is a plus.


    Bookmark   April 9, 2008 at 8:03PM
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Been there done that....messy rooms are of no importance! I 5 years it won't matter at all!!!!...most likely in 2 years it won't matter.
If you love and support your son and/or daughter, allow them their own space to do with as they choose...if you are allowing them to live with you and have a feeling of resentment, then by all means rail and rant about messy rooms. But resentment doesn't make for good relationships.
Neatness doesn't really matter in the grand scheme of what makes a "good person"...if they are paying their bills, not getting drunk nightly, earning good grades, not stealing cars or shoplifing NOR hanging around with people who do that stuff....why would you get your panties in a wad over a messy room? Unless it's just to show your dominance?
Don't give it a thought...close the door, ignore it and enjoy having your son and daughter living in your home.
This too shall pass....and hopefully with good feelings for all.
Linda C

    Bookmark   April 9, 2008 at 8:13PM
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Agree with lindac in a way. Young people living at home or on their own have to be enrolled in school (if 4-year college is out of the question then some type of training) and also work if they have time. I think young people can afford sleeping all day and play because they have too much free time. If you need to finish college or vocational training project then you can not stay up. DD is so exausted from being full time in college and working that she collapses at 9:30-10PM. She stays up only on saturday night. being busy keeps kids out of trouble. there is no time to drink or party if you are busy. as about messy rooms, if kids are busy with school, work and don't get in trouble then I don't care about their rooms. there are way bigger problems than messy rooms.

And if they are done with their education and only work, and they have enough time to trash their rooms and sleep all day they could get a second job? So they can save for moving out?

    Bookmark   April 9, 2008 at 9:23PM
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Linda, I am not resentful not do I wish to show my dominance and your remarks as such are both uncalled for and insulting. I did not come to this forum looking for an amateur analysis of my character. I am honored to be a mother to 4 wonderful admired and adored children, 2 of which I have finished raising, and whom I will be secretly heartbroken to see leave. I was simply looking for advice on how to foster some domestic equality and responsibility. Thank you to those with non-judgemental comments.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2008 at 9:51PM
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My dd lived home until age 26 (last summer) when she bought her own condo.

Of course, each family has to find their own path. We really cannot tell you what you should do, we can only relate how we handled this situation.

DD, getting her career started, didn't have enough money to get the kind of place she wanted, so she stayed home. But regardless of how little she was making, I ALWAYS expected her to pay board. By the time they're in their 20's, they should realize and accept that they have to take financial responsibility for themselves. Now, in our case, we didn't really need DD's money to pay the bills, so I quietly put it in a separate account for her. When she had found and purchased a condo she could afford, I handed her a passbook with over $12,000 in it as an emergency back-up fund.

As to the room? It's their room. Just shut the door if it bothers you (that's what I used to do. Funny thing--now that DD has her own place, it's a showplace!). I simply cannot see the value in getting all upset and excited about something so ultimately unimportant in the grand scheme of things.

Hours/schedules? They're young adults, and have the right to set their own hours, at least in my opinion. My dd lived the same way. Often out until midnight or later, but it was her life. And she was way too old to be subjected to Mommy giving her a curfew or bedtime.

Now disrespect? Absolutely not acceptable. That would be the one thing that was non-negociable for me. If they
want the MAJOR financial benefits of living home in Mom's Bed and Board, the least they can do is be respectful and polite.

Now, I will add one thing. Yours are still young. In just a year or so, I imagine you'll see a huge difference in them. All of a sudden, they grow up and become very nice people that you really enjoy having around. And then they get their own place.... and you miss having them around so very much

    Bookmark   April 10, 2008 at 7:31AM
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I think having some firm categories helps. Either they are:

A) - Kids. Mom and Dad pay the bills and make the rules. Kids follow them, go to school, do a reasonable amount of chores. Kids have curfews and must call in.

B) - Adults. Adult kids pay rent and live according to their own schedules. If they eat with the family, they have the responsibility to let the cook know if they will be home for a given meal. Adults are responsible to be good tennants and polite citizens. Adults can also have sex.

C) - In between. A minefield of limited duration. Must be individually and specifically negotiated with the needs of all parties in mind. Should have a firm expiration date.

It might be worth talking to your adult-kids to see where they view themselves and where you'd like them to be.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2008 at 7:52PM
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In our home, my husband and I set the boundaries, and that's what works for us.

Our son, soon to be 21, is undisciplined (& has ADHD but won't get help) and didn't do so well in school last semester after being on notice from the 3 semesters before that by us parents (not school.) We are choosing to decline financial support for his college this year. He is free to do as he wishes, including return to school and take out loans (which we will not co-sign at this time and he is ineligible for need-based grants because of our income and scholarships because of his grades.) So he is choosing to take a year off from his ivy league school and return to our home town and he would like to live at home.

He is at home for his summer internship, which was planned prior to the grade situation. And he is already messy and it spills out of his room and into our lives. As with many of you, he stays up really late and unless heading to work, sleeps until 2-4 pm. His business. Late hours and people coming into our home at 2-4 am disturb the sleep of my husband and me, so while he lives here, he must be in before 1:30 or stay out all night (without the car we provide for him to use.) That would be our business.

As he has not responded to my requests for what I want and need from him in cleaning up after himself, I think we will now need to lay down firm rules and limitations and he will get to choose whether he stays or goes while he sorts his priorities out this year. For us, to just put up with it wreaks havoc with the peacefulness of our home and I think enables him to continue the dysfunctional lifestyle that contributed to his poor school performance. He just may need to "clean up his act" elsewhere if he is unwilling to help maintain our home and enjoy the way we like to live.

    Bookmark   June 9, 2009 at 12:47PM
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Expectations? To move out in 3 months or not move in at all. No rent, help with chores one person can't do alone.

    Bookmark   June 9, 2009 at 3:10PM
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Definitely you need some groundrules. If the kids didn't have their own expected set of chores beyond cleaning their rooms, it may be hard to get them to change, but you need to try or you get these 'kidults' who just won't grow up, and, in boys' cases especially, go looking for a new mom in their relationships who will look after them like mom did.

My stepson moved in with us for over 2 years and did not stick to his end of the bargain at all, did not clean, did not cook for others, could not 'see' the filthy taps, counters etc he'd leave after using the kitchen, did not pay rent (we agreed he didn't have to pay whilst he was studying, but he's been in and out of his uni studies a lot, it will take him almost ten years for his batchelor's at this rate, but that's his choice and since he's paying his way I accept this)

What was a biggie was when debt collectors started calling, something I've experienced myself and did not want to repeat, and, in his case, was entirely unnecessary.

If they're unable to pay they certainly need to contribute chores-wise, and willingly. SS was incredibly passive and would not do anything unless asked, and would say "just ask me" (not that he would do much, and wouldn't do anything he thought didn't fit in with...whatever) but I think at age 25 or so, you ought to know what needs doing and just do it.

He had an infected foot at one point, we didn't know what happened but we learned the other day, it happened when he was living with us, he stepped on a bbq brush (yes we had his used dirty bbq in our basement family room til I moved it out to our shed, it's been in there unused for over two years now) which was underneath his clothes or other junk!

My biggest issue was how he took advantage of his mother's good nature, and walked all over her. Unfortunately you can't tell him anything, he's driving around on his $1000 snow tires, and it's June.

Stick to your rules, if they don't like them, they can move out. You are doing them no favours by bending to their whim.

    Bookmark   June 10, 2009 at 2:49PM
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I wont go on for long but I am the other side. I am 33 and have lived with my parents all my life(Dad died 2 years ago but thats another whole story). I pay the house payment and buy ALL my own food and do a lot to make sure the house is as it should be. Mom NEVER has to worry if the grass is cut or snow is taken care of. Anything that needs doing I do or help her do. I may not be a clean freak but I make sure that house is picked up and that everything is clean and neat. I dont bring people over in the middle of the night and make a bunch of noise. I dont want that and even though Mom says it is ok to bring friends over I respect her enough not to ruin her peace. If the kid cant pay that that become a whole different set of ground rules. Hopefully you all understood what I am trying to say.

    Bookmark   July 31, 2009 at 4:25AM
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I am a 23 year old college grad who is living at home my first year out of college because of taking an unpaid year long internship in my home town. IT was a great opportunity and after discussing it with my parents -- we all agreed it would be no problem. I did not have to pay rent but I did have to pay for food, gas and car insurance.

It's been a bit of a bumpy road. I am used to coming and going as I please in college. And suddenly -- my Mom has started waiting up for me to come home at 2 in the morning!

I'm a good kid -- I drink socially very often but limit it to one beer so I NEVER get drunk. My job is very demanding so most of my time is spent working however I have the occasional week lull that I like to take advantage of and sleep in when i can.

My job is VERY different from my parents. Some days I work from home -- some days I spend 12 hours in the office. It just completley depends on what's going on and often -- my parents thing I'm not doing anything because I'm still at home.

Things have come to a particular head when I started dating an old friend from high school. Our schedules are quite opposite and so we often end up having a drink after work around 11 and will then either watch a movie or we love going for walks late at night. It's enjoyable. I'm not getting trashed and running all over town. However my my mother is fed up with me coming home late and has finally said either move out or be in before midnight.

I am at a loss...

I clean up after myself. I should be cooking more however I never expect a meal to be made for me. I should absolutley be doing more chores and have had it too easy but after a discussion I've agreed to step it up.

Chores and daily house things -- I am happy to change and adapt but having a curfew as a 23 year old adult trying to transition into the real world -- it seems a little absurd.

My parents and I have different hours. They have to work at 6 am -- my job doesn't begin until 10 but then I'm not out until 10 or 11 -- we're just on different schedules and it is tearing us apart.

I find myself questioning whether or not I am completely out of line and disrespecting my parents or if I need to assert my independence and demand respect despite the fact that I am living at home...

This is awful.

Does anyone have advice?

    Bookmark   April 27, 2011 at 3:17AM
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2 adult children and one daughter's husband ages 27, 30 and 32. We moved out of state temporarily and the 3 were staying rent free at our home with 2 cats and a dog. The couple did not clean the litter or floor in the basement after animals urinated. They did not walk the dog regularly a neighbor came by at 7 PM to walk the dog for the first time since early morning.
After 1/1/2/ year of asking them to clean up after their pets- (the ordor in the basement permeates the house- they have 9 deodorizers in the basement, but do not clean the floor) they have neglected to clean up after their pets on a consistent basis. We asked them to leave- they are interpreting it as " being thrown out. They both have jobs anad were saving for a second home they currently own a condo. They seem entitled- never thanked us for letting them stay rent free. (Spend every week-end watching TV or in bed) I want them out in 2 months.

    Bookmark   July 11, 2011 at 7:43PM
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"Neatness doesn't really matter in the grand scheme of what makes a "good person"...if they are paying their bills, not getting drunk nightly, earning good grades, not stealing cars or shoplifing NOR hanging around with people who do that stuff....why would you get your panties in a wad over a messy room? Unless it's just to show your dominance? "

Actually, neatness DOES matter. Remember that faithful in little is faithful in much, and that maxim doesn't just apply to money, but life in general. The OP says one of her children is a slob who doesn't throw anything out. Seen an episode of "The Hoarders" lately? Sure, it's extreme, but this is how something like that gets started. Aside from the facts that it's unsanitary and can draw vermin like mice and roaches, and that an adult who refuses to keep their (free) living space tidy is being disrespectful to the homeowner (in this case, Mom), it can also be a sign of depression.
>Disclaimer: I am not a mental health expert, but IMHO Depression is understandable. You're talking about an adult with a college education who SHOULD be living in their own home, or at the very least, living with friends their own age. I realize someone posted about counseling and was immediately attacked as a spammer (and they may very well be), BUT counseling is exactly what I would recommend for both of them if they continue to refuse to take steps to resolve their situation.

It's not about showing "dominance", it's about requiring that an ADULT be responsible for themselves, which in addition to earning good grades, not getting drunk nightly, not stealing cars or shoplifing or hanging around with people who do that stuff also includes keeping their living space decently clean. (personally, this is the kind of behavior I expected from my children starting from when they were TEENAGERS - it goes without saying that a mature adult should have enough sense to know how to behave themselves)

As it is, it sounds like when she moves out, the daughter will be learning a very expensive lesson via lost cleaning deposits and potentially being sued for damages that neatness does indeed matter to a great many people, especially the ones she will be referring to as "Landlord", and "Boss". And the son is liable to discover that while barking and snapping at good old Mom is an easy way to assert his (imagined) independence, one day he's going to bark at the wrong authority figure and end up in a world of trouble.

KarenJ, I'd give them an ultimatum; clean up after themselves, be respectful and start paying at least a token amount for rent (you can put it in an account for them if you wish, but they MUST pay it), or they have 30 days to move out. I understand that neither has enough money for their own place, suggest they share an apartment, since they seem to not only have similar styles of housekeeping but also keep compatible hours and obviously already know each other well. If they end up moving out, will they be mad at you? Without a doubt, but once they are actually out of the nest, unless they are completely spoiled Paris Hilton style rotten, (which I doubt) they will learn to treasure the freedom that real responsibility brings, and they will ultimately respect YOU because you encouraged them to fly.

    Bookmark   July 16, 2011 at 6:50PM
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I am a single dad raised my daughter on my own from one year old she is now 21. She used to be a straight A student, very helpful and respectful, she was in a dance company, I sent her to modeling school. He mother came back in town about 5 years ago and things went to hell from then on.
My daughter is a total slob her room stays like the garbage dump; she sleeps all day and stays in front the TV when she is not asleep or on Face book. She does nothing around the house, pays no bills does not have a job, lies about everything. Her mother advised her that she is no one�s slave or maid and does not have to do anything. That's all good but she does not even pick up after herself, she would take dishes in her room eat, drink milk leaves it there for weeks sometimes months. When her bathroom becomes too fitly to use she would go use mines. She was in a very good school cost me $12,000.00 per semester her mother encouraged her to skip and go out with boys she failed all but one class I bought her a car paid the insurance give her credit cards but still she does nothing she cant even wake up on time for school When I complain her mom advised her that she will not die if I don't pay her school (Her mother encouraged her drop all her classes one semester so they can go off on a cruise. After months of complains and argument to get her back on track failed I have taken back everything, I don't pay for school she is not in school now I don't pay the insurance for the car, she has warrants so she is not driving she has had several tickets and wrecks.
So for the most part i agree at least she is home and I can see her on a daily basis--but I am frustrated 24 7 and cannot make progress in my own life and needs. Her mom clearly does not want her to live with her because I have given her the opportunity a few times.
So I ask; you guys are all mom's what should I do. I cannot function like this.

Desperate dad

    Bookmark   October 10, 2011 at 12:36AM
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Slovenly irresponsible kids thrive on gutless parents. You've described a textbook example. Nothing's going to happen until you grow a backbone.

30 days and out she goes, IMHO.

    Bookmark   October 10, 2011 at 9:58AM
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Asolo hit the nail on the head...this child (not a child actually, just behaving like one) needs some long-overdue "tough love".

She needs to get out or you will blink your eyes and she will be 25 or 30 and still leaching off dad.

FYI, I have a 14 year old daughter who has exhibited some of these traits, she was always a great student, never in trouble, until last year (8th grade). It was a very, very tough year for me and her mom (we're divorced, 50/50 custody). I have already started to lay down the rules for how it will work in the future...if you don't take highschool seriously, I will not spend a nickel of our college fund to send you to some party school so you can have a four year vacation. And if that happens, after you turn 18 (which would be a few months after HS graduation), then out you go you are not living at home.

Hopefully we can drill this into her head over the next few years to make her realize that the free ride ends eventually.

Good luck!

    Bookmark   October 10, 2011 at 11:43AM
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It's the nature of maturing young adults to test their limits. Part of their learning is finding out what's acceptable conduct/behavior and what isn't -- part of what parents are supposed to provide. If they don't find any limits, they learn from that too.

    Bookmark   October 10, 2011 at 12:22PM
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I have tried to bring myself to having her leave several times only to end up in frustration for the whole week and not following through with it. I know if I put her out that's a guarantee failure for her. She was such a smart kid and I don't know how to get her back on track. You are right I will blink and she will be 30 and we will still be in the same position, I guess I just have to suck it up and take my chances with the tough love route. I day is consumed by trying to find a solution, I have read these posting more than a dozen times trying to see if I missed something..the thing that sticks out at me is the statement one of you made.."at least she is home" but i am not sure if that's a valid point any more. Guess I need to grow a backbone and take my chances with tough love.

    Bookmark   October 10, 2011 at 6:01PM
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"I know if I put her out that's a guarantee failure for her. "

I think you've got it backwards. From your description, she's a failure NOW. Give her a chance at success by getting her out of there.

Tell her what and why and give her a time-frame. Even an allowance, if you want....but get her out of your house. Tolerating the level of carelessness and disrespect in your own home is just silly. Of course, you can help her to get started if you want....although you've already done that once and she crapped on you for it.

It's not just you. Nobody in the world will put up with the nonsense you've described. If she hasn't learned that at your house, get her gone and let the world knock some sense into her. She's going to be whatever kind of jerk she's going to be. If you've decided to live with it and it's OK with you then admit it. However, your post didn't sound like that to me. Just sounds like you don't want to lose her....except you're a little late. She's already gone. You're grieving for the loss of the daughter you don't actually have. She's using you because she's learned she can. And she will continue as long as you allow it.

You're living in your wishes....and her detritus. I think it should be reality-time for both of you. I recommend you act. I'll bet she'll shape up if she has to, although it will likely take a while. Right now, she doesn't have to do anything except play you.

Gird your loins, dad. No matter how it goes, she'll blame you for it. She knows where your buttons are and she'll go for them. Can you handle it?

    Bookmark   October 10, 2011 at 7:51PM
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I agree with a temporary allowance, but short term...maybe 3 months rent or something....preferably payable directly to the landlord, so she doesn't just take the money and shack up with friends for a while.

Also, give her a specific time frame....its Oct 11 now, tell her she has until Thanksgiving to figure out where and how she is gonna live. After allowing her to become this irresponsible, there's really no harm in letting her stay another month...but, and this is the hard part, if that time comes and she is not out, you must stick to your guns and be prepared to physically move her stuff out and change the locks.

I hope it does not come that that, but if you tell her she has to be out by a date and she's not and you let her stay, then you've basically given her a free pass as long as she wants.

Its up to you. This kid wont change until she has to.

    Bookmark   October 11, 2011 at 11:07AM
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mkroopy and I are of the same mind.

I call your attention his last sentence, especially.

    Bookmark   October 11, 2011 at 8:49PM
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Hi Single Dad

I have been through what you describe. What I have learnt is, we must set boundaries, as parents. If the child is not acting in a reasonable manner, then we should try to set them right. It does not have to be a battle. Just a sit down and choose your words.

Say something like. "I love you, I care about you, but it is time for you to take on some responsibilities. This is what I am prepared to help you with." You can then tell her how you will assist with further study, subsidise her rental if she chooses the moving out option (plan how much you will do this for and for how long). Time frame is good idea.

I would advise you to formulate what you will say, before you say it. At all costs don't end up in a shouting match, the last thing you want her to do is move out when you are both annoyed with each other.

I would advise you to look for suitable accomodation yourself, so you can suggest things to her.

Failing all that, I suggest you have a backup plan, like, if she is staying at home, then she will have to have some responsibilities relating to that. Get an agreement with her about room tidiness, meal making etc.

I don't like parents who say things like "my house, my rules". I think this is really inflammatory. The child does have rights in the house, it is their house too. But they also have responsibilities, like any adult.

I think the problem with children this age is that they want things both ways. They want to remain a child, in that they want their parents to provide for them, and they can generally just lounge about, like they did when they were younger. But it also occurs to them that they are adults, and "hey I don't have to do anything you tell me to do" attitude surfaces. It is a very difficult time for parents, I think.

I would remember that in the darkest moments when she is a real pain in the neck, she still needs guidance and goal setting from you.

I think if she "used" to be a lovely well behaved girl, that girl is still there and will surface again. Girls this age can be influenced by negative things and they are just trying to find their way in life. If you are there, as a solid rock of dignity, and love she will know and rely on that to get her through.

I hope this helps you to make a decision about your predicament.

    Bookmark   October 12, 2011 at 12:41AM
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thank you all. S has decided to become a father at age 21 while we were (are?) putting him through an expensive college. His GF is leaning towards adoption. We have been clear telling him that we will support him emotionally but nothing at all financially.This is difficult and we would never let them go hungry or without medicine but we do not think we should take on his adult responsibilites. He is, of course, angry with us as not seeing his desire for this little family.
so thanks for the clarity here and I feel unbending. We hate that he might put his own needs in front of this 19 yr old girl and his unborn child. But feel supported here in not bailing him out. Does not help that we are within 3 years of retirement. Also that my work has made me very very protective of babies needs and a kid without a college degree (that is very capable of getting) who thinks he can make it works infuriates us. sigh.

    Bookmark   October 15, 2011 at 3:21AM
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I have to say that the online parenting community is extremely supportive and straight to the point, it has helped tremendously, especially "asolo" you are correct in your assessment, "she is already a failure" and yes in someways I am morning the loss of a daughter. Worse I feeling let down in the worse possible way.

The things I have had to give up in the course of raise her; job opportunities, promotions, relationships and the list goes on. It was a clear choice I made but I can't help but feel regrets seeing the results today.

Here it is midnight and I am spending my time trying to figure out what I did wrong or what could I have done better, instead of reading a book, watching TV or just relaxing or even sleeping.

I figured I have done a lot to raise a 21 year old and it should be normal to expect to have a relaxing life style but instead I have 24/7 frustration and discomfort in my own home.

it is extremely sad what she has become in the space of 4/5 years that her mother has been back in town. Her mother left when she was around 3yrs old, and since she came back it is a constant battle with her undermining everything good in my daughter.

My daughter has warrens for traffic violations, her car needs a tire, she owes money for school but instead of her mother helping her to see what responsibility is she bought her a ticket to go to Las Vegas with friends. The worse part is they planned this about a month ago, she is leaving on Friday and my daughter just told me tonight.

"asolo" again a good point I need to give her a chance to become successful and it can't be here, like you guys said she knows where my buttons are and she is not hesitant to push them.

She does not really have to help out here or listen to me because she has somewhere to go, her mom. My daughter's level of irresponsibility will just keep getting worse, so you guys are right she needs to wake up. I don't agree with the allowance bit or paying some of her rent--I think that would only make her more irresponsible.

I recall and incident where she got her cell phone take up several times in school for texting during class. I told her if it happens again I will turn it off. Of course it did and I turned it off. Mother when and bought her a new phone on her plan. the next month her mother was complaining that she ran over her allowed text. I suggested that she turn off the text, her mother agreed, but guess what; mommy got her unlimited texting instead. And it has been this game for the past 4/5 years.

I know i rambled off quite a bit but your comments and suggestions has helped me clear the smoke and see the reality of my situation. As you guys said either way I will be blamed and I just need to be ok with that.

    Bookmark   October 24, 2011 at 12:53AM
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Hi... I'm in my late 20's, and have lived at home all my life.. My parents divorced in my early 20's and after that my dad always said I was welcome in his home as long as I wanted. Basically I think he was just as thankful for a little companionship as I was, and though I sleep in the living room we always respected each others privacy and we made it work really well... We always got along and i never even considered moving out, until I was ready to start my own family. Though I do not pay rent per se, I've always helped out buying groceries and paying the cable until i recently went unemployed and unable to do so. I also help with chores and cooking once/twice a week (my dad enjoys cooking, and im terrible at it, but i offered to give him a break). Now my dad does breakfast and my mom does dinner (yes moms here now too, more on that in a few... At least i dont have to cook anymore) Anyways, I've always kept my area reasonably clean although a bit cluttered cuz of space issues. I feel I earn my keep, and was never an issue.

Now fast forward and my mom was forced to move back for financial reasons. My dad took her in cuz he didnt wanna see her on the street, and even though they don't "love" each other anymore they have remained friends. I'm not worried about them getting back together or anything, I know they're both much happier apart and neither is very happy about the arrangement, so that's not where I'm getting at. The problem is like I previously mentioned I sleep in the living room, as well as my sister... Its a very weird open-floor planned house, and technically no bedrooms -- my dad has the top loft, and the bottom loft/main floor is my room/sisters room, as well as the living room/dining room area... It's a multipurpose room. Then you have the kitchen, and the atrium when you first walk in, but seperated from the main house... its cement floored and not really finished off but my mom has been staying in there anyway(the only really private area of the house). There's no room for a bed there (she sleeps on couch), otherwise I'd offer to switch rooms (yes even in the living room, I have a full-sized bed!!) basically the issue lies where there's just too many people living in one space... I get absolutely ZERO privacy now, theres always someone else in the room... I understand its a living room, but I also enjoy my quiet time, and except for very late at night thats impossible.. My mom monopolizes the tv all day (with running commentation of everything thats going on in the show, like i cant watch it for my self if i was interested in the first place), and if i wanna watch one of my shows or play my wii or something, its a fight.. Unfortunately right now moneys been very tight for all of us, hence the living arrangement to start with, so moving out is not an option. I'm between jobs at the moment, with no $$ to waste going out, so i sit home all day making the situation worse, cuz theres just no escape.

I'm not trying to sound ungrateful, and I know my mothers as stressed about the situation as I am, but its really taking a toll on me. i was fine in the beginning, but now this has been going on for about 2-3 months, and the tension is building. I tried working out a compromise where we take turns with the tv, she can have it for a few hours, then me, then my sister... Set blocks of time where we were in charge of the tv, instead of fighting, and an hour a day of "quiet time" to give everyone a break. That suggestion didn't go well. I also suggested trying to hook another tv in the atrium, but she doesnt wanna get another cable box. I'm not sure if there really is a solution at this point, but I wish we could work out a compromise, its really hard everyone living in such small quarters... I love my family and hate fighting with them, but I'm ready to pack my bags and live in a cardboard box at this point... any sugggestions?? sorry for the rant, I just got in another fight with her earlier and so frustrated!!

    Bookmark   January 22, 2012 at 1:08AM
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Learn to do something to occupy your time that doesn't involve the TV. Who knows, it may even make you more employable.

    Bookmark   January 23, 2012 at 11:19AM
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You sit at home all day watching TV and playing Wii and that's what the arguments are about? And you're in your late 20's?

Seems to me the problem is obvious.

    Bookmark   January 24, 2012 at 2:39PM
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There's something odd about the post from EmYanks....for someone describing such an incredibly insane and ridiculous situation...his writing is incredibly good (compared to most people who post online), certainly he must be fairly educated, and thus, employable.

That post is either a big joke....or a post by someone who really needs to break away from the nest and make his own life. I'm in my 40s now...but even in my 20's, I would have stood on a street corner with a "will do anything" sign than live with my folks...and my folks were awesome...I just knew that going back home after college was a step in the WRONG direction.

Dude...if that post was not a joke....GET OUT! Fly the coup and make your own life....f*ck the TV, the Wii, having mom and dad cook for you and all that stuff...go live a life for Christ's sake.

    Bookmark   January 24, 2012 at 8:56PM
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1) I'm a girl. 2) This is not a joke. 3) I have been looking for a job, and might have 1 very soon. I don't play wii all day, I'm talking about my mom watching tv 12 hours a day, and then me wanting to play for even an hour. I asked for advice, not judgement. If moving out was an option, don't you think I would have moved out by now?? A few years ago when most of my friends were single, I'm sure I could have easily have moved out and shared an apartment somewhere, but without a job at the moment, where could I afford to go?? Do you think my mom would be living with her ex-husband if she had any choice?? Economys hard on everyone, so stop the judgement... I'm asking for advice on how to make this work in the meanwhile until I can afford to move out.. This is obviously a hard situation for all of us.

    Bookmark   January 30, 2012 at 2:10PM
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If your dad's OK with footing the bill for you two self-willed invalids, who am I to "judge"? You wrote. I responded with an opinion based on what you wrote. You call that a "judgement".

On the forums, it seems like just about everybody who gets an opinion they don't like says they're being "judged". If you can't endure the yay/nay of the medium, best not to risk posting because it will come to you both ways.

You don't get what you want in situations like you described no matter what the arrangements may be. If your mom's dug into the TV and you can't share it without creating unacceptable turmoil, read more books, or do something else. People did actually get along before there was TV and Wii.

    Bookmark   January 30, 2012 at 2:54PM
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Then I'll repeat my advice:
"Learn to do something to occupy your time that doesn't involve the TV. Who knows, it may even make you more employable."
Get a volunteer job. Sometimes they lead to actual paid employment. At the very least you will be learning new skills and doing something that will demonstrate a work ethic to a potential employer. You will be meeting other people who you can network with- and this could also lead to a job. You will be meeting other people and having conversations which will make things more interesting and having experiences you can talk about- or at least think about- when you get home.
Learn a handicraft. You can do this without a TV, and if you get good at it, sell the results on Etsy or eBay.
Join a library. Read. This gives you more to talk about and think about and also broadens your employability.
As a junior, non rent paying member of the household you're low man on the totem pole so it's useless to start a fight over who gets to use the TV no matter how unreasonable your (older) mother is being.

    Bookmark   January 31, 2012 at 8:23AM
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It's your dad's house.
Either deal with the situation or get out of the house more. Collen had some great ideas... try them.

    Bookmark   January 31, 2012 at 3:15PM
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It's hard living in a small space with a lot of people packed in, and in these hard economic times a lot of people are in your shoes. The economy has really taken a toll on young people your age, and employment is much harder to find. The situation you're in is understandable and your frustration is understandable. It's probably hard on everyone in your family.

As long as you're dependent on your dad, you're going to be vulnerable to this situation in the future. These economic times won't last forever, the economy will get better. My suggestion is to use this valuable time to position yourself to become independent and have better job security in the future. Would you like to go back to school and get a degree, or another degree if you already have one? What job skills would help you when the economy turns? Is there any type of financial aid you might be able to get to help you go back to school?

I think someone above suggested volunteering, and that is an excellent, excellent suggestion. I know several people who got their jobs by volunteering first. I'm one of those people!

If you're not already on a strenuous exercise program, now might be a good time to get on one. Vigorous exercise produces natural endorphins that help people feel better and mellow them out.

Improve your cooking skills. I think you said above you're not a great cook, but now might be a good time to become one.

You are young and have so much more of life to live. You have time now, and you might not in the future. So use that time to educate yourself as much as you can, get yourself in great physical shape, learn some new skills, volunteer, and hunt, hunt, hunt, hunt, hunt for a job. If you like quiet time, can you go to a local library or bookstore? Also, anything you can do to expand your network of people you know might help your job hunt. You might meet people volunteering, or hanging out in the coffee shop, or running at the park, etc. So get out and get busy as much as you can. You'll feel better and it'll help provide a valuable cushion from the irritations of too close family living.

Good luck with the job hunt.

    Bookmark   January 31, 2012 at 4:05PM
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Thanks Daisy, those were actually some great suggestions... I actually volunteer with my church already... That won't turn into a paid position, but does get me out of the house a few times a month, and i really enjoy it... and it shows on my work experience when filling out applications too... I was also considering going back to school, but im one of those that never really figured out what i want to do, and i dont wanna spend the next 10 years figuring it out lol. I do have my associates though, and hoping to get an office job of some sorts and then if its necessary take to advance take a few classes, but not where im paying for a degree i may not even use. Don't wanna waste my time on the core classes either, i wanna stay relevant to what im doing. In the meantime I might be getting a job waitressing also. I should hear back from them next week. But I also like the idea of going to the library or the park once its warmer out, free things just to get out of the house a bit.. thanks again!! normally i just go along with it, but that day i posted i was just really mad, needed to vent a bit..

    Bookmark   February 5, 2012 at 5:02AM
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I am going thru the college graduate moving home after being away for 4.5 years syndrome!
I am thrilled to have my son home BUT, he is a slob! I have been living alone for 4.5 years and my house has been very clean and organized UNTIL now! I must say he was messy from the time he could play with toys etc..I was called several/many times to come to school to clean out his desk/locker throughout his school years! He was not a neat child at home EVER even though I am very organized! This is STRESSING me out and I am beginning to hold it against him! He does not take out the trash if the kitchen trash is full...just puts the items on the counter. Water/gatorade bottles are all over the house and his bathroom which is also the guest bath is a messy..not dirty but a mess!
He works~ not in his degree field/in fact far below due to the economy. When he has a day off which is often he does not take it upon himself to do the yard/laundry/clean kitchen or anything else around the house. I work 50-55 hours a week as a Surgical Assistant so my hours are very early morning and late evening and I guess I expect some help since no rent is being paid. He goes to the gym each evening then comes home to shower and go out with his buddies. Needless to say I am becoming very resentful! I love having him home and it has always just been the 2 of us but I need to learn how to let go or ask for help!!!

    Bookmark   June 22, 2012 at 7:45PM
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Its very tiring picking up after someone else who you feel is capable of doing it themselves but chose not to because they know someone else will do it *sigh* It may seem like a small issue, but it breeds resentment because the relationship seems one sided, honestly though....maybe our children also have a hard time seeing their parents as equals, and stll see us as parents....we need to try to find a way to move into a adult/ adult relationship

    Bookmark   July 18, 2012 at 2:15AM
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Is it too much to ask my sons (22 & 23) who live at home for free, (one in college one just graduated) they have their cell phone paid, and car insurance, plus all food provided to keep their rooms clean, with no cloths thrown on the floor , bathroom clean, put their dishes in the dishwasher, and help around the house periodically and be respectful

    Bookmark   January 30, 2013 at 5:42PM
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Not at all, in fact I'd be expecting them to pay their own cell phone and insurance bills and possibly even contribute money for board and lodging.
At that age I was paying my own way and running my own home.

This post was edited by colleenoz on Sat, Mar 16, 13 at 0:45

    Bookmark   March 16, 2013 at 12:44AM
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My son was always messy--his bedroom door stayed closed from his freshman year of high school through his senior year of college (he lived at home the entire time). It made me crazy to even peek into the room, so I stopped. (It's important to mention that, throughout those years, the rest of the house was spotless). His door finally opened again when he moved out. I didn't know what to expect when I went in for the first time since I hadn't been in there for so long. I was happy that he had done a good job of cleaning it out when he left. One surprise I didn't expect, though, was a large painting of a panther he did on one of the walls. I had no idea that he'd done it, and he's says he's not really sure why he did it either. He painted it while he was in high school, and I've found that it's hard to explain why teenagers do some of the things they do. Fast forward to now: he's married,and he and his wife have two very young children and a spotless home. I, however, don't. Cleaning up after myself doesn't seem particularly important anymore. If I'm working on a project, I leave whatever mess I've made until it gets so bad that residual shame leftover from my cleaning days compels me to finally do something about it. The interesting thing is this: Now that I've entered what is considered to be elderly by the CDC, I tease my son by suggesting the possibility that I may have to move in with his family someday. He always says he's sure I'll be able to take care of myself for a longtime to come. Then he adds that he's not sure he could live with someone who's as messy as I am!

    Bookmark   March 17, 2013 at 11:29PM
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That is a lovely story Mymimitoo. I find it quite moving to think your son painted a picture on his bedroom wall in his teen years.

My son moved out of home a year or so ago, and I was dreading going in to clean - like you. It wasnt that bad ! He is now 20 and lives in his own place with a friend. I am not allowed to go there.

My DH says it is smelly and messy and they don't open the windows !

I think your posting says - the passage of time dictates that a child's mess is ephemeral - what is really important is that you love them and treasure their time with you - because soon the grow up and they are gone...

    Bookmark   March 18, 2013 at 4:27AM
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I was looking for advice about what to do with my situation at home and I came across this thread. You all seem to give good advice so if anyone has any input, please help me out.
I'm an adult living at home with my father and my sister. I am 27 and she is 29. We both moved out from our father's home when we were about 18 but we are both back now. Currently we're both in college (yes, I know we're old for college. We've made many mistakes) It's very hard to live with my sister, though. She is disrespectful to my father, inconsiderate, and extremely messy. Her room always smells like molded food, she keeps dirty dishes in her room and probably has never dusted or wiped down anything in there... and most frighteningly, she picks her nose and wipes it on her sheet until the side of her bed looks as if it were splattered with something (sorry to be disgusting). I'm pretty much the polar opposite of that, I make my bed as soon as I'm out of it, vacuum often, keep my closet clean and dust normally, I even clean my dad's room and do dishes for all of us.
The kitchen and main bathroom are the major issues. I have a room with a half bathroom that I keep pretty clean. I don't have a shower in there, so I have to use the main bathroom to shower, which I also clean. When I don't clean it, it collects dust and hair and water and is not pleasant. She has never cleaned it in two years. My dad probably has, but I don't think it's his responsibility to clean it since he works long hours and we don't. My sister says it's not my bathroom and if I don't like it then I shouldn't use it. I have to shower, so I think that's stupid. Her idea is that if it's HER room or HER bathroom, she doesn't have to clean it because it's not hurting anyone but her. But if we ask her to clean something we all share, her idea is also that she shouldn't have to clean that either since we all use it. Basically, a loopy "logic" of how she should never have to clean ANYTHING.

I talk to my dad about it, and he agrees that she is the problem. He asks her to do the dishes sometimes and then she goes on a tirade about how she does HER dishes. She does clean her dishes, after they have piled in her room for days. The problem is that my father wants us to function as a family unit and help each other. But, if he has a coffee cup in the sink from the morning, she refuses to wash it - even if she's already doing her own dishes, despite the fact that he has given her a roof on her head and food to eat.
She doesn't have a car, so we have to take turns driving her to and from school or work / volunteering. We are happy to do so, but get nothing in return when it comes to helping out around the house or even a little respect. Everyone has to walk on eggshells just to talk to her.
When I ask my dad why he doesn't put his foot down about it, he talks about how he is afraid that if he threatens to kick her out, that she will allow herself to be kicked out and just end up on the street or kill herself. She has a history with depression and alcoholism. She got on medication and came out of depression but still is disrespectful and messy. She also has cut back on her drinking but there are mornings I wake up to the sound of her puking in the bathroom that she never cleans. When my dad comes home from work, she just brushes right past him, barely mumbling a hello. When he is too busy at work to drive her somewhere, she goes off in a rage. She truly functions as a child.
I don't know what to do because my dad says we need to love each other and be good sisters for when he is gone, to look out for each other. So me talking to her is out of the question because she will get defensive and get mad at me and our relationship will suffer. But my dad won't do anything to help the situation out of fear of how she will react.

So... is this just something I have to deal with because I live at home? Or is it right to expect some change? If my dad won't do anything about it, what is the advice for me? My dad says just for me to clean everything and do everything, but I am resentful about it and feel like I am not being treated fairly. In addition to the cleaning, I also do everything else to help my dad. Obviously I'm not that great of a person - I failed in school and wasted years of my life, I live at home with dad and I'm 27. I know I'm not perfect. But I do what I can. I don't work but I do get student loans to pay my bills. If my dad asks me for money, I give it to him. I manage all the household bill payments and help my dad at his job when I can by editing his letters and memos or things like that. My dad works a lot so I have to do these things. My sister is so ungrateful and would be offended if he asked for her help. I wrote way too much so I will stop now since I think I made my point, even if I forgot some things.

Does anyone have any ideas about what I can do? I would like to know if I'm wrong for feeling this way or if I'm acting entitled. Please lend me some advice, I really need it. Thank you.

    Bookmark   March 27, 2013 at 2:30PM
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Not sure why this is on a parenting board... you are not a parent.

It's your dad's house, and he has to deal with your sister.
If you are unhappy, move.

    Bookmark   April 2, 2013 at 9:48AM
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I am the stepmother of adult children ages 21, 23, 26 and almost 28. The oldest three are female college grads. The youngest will be entering his senior year of college in the fall. The oldest works overseas for the federal government. However, she is supportive of her two sisters remaining dysfunctional. The 26 year old lived at home, but quit two jobs in a row and then moved out of state to live in a youth hostel with her 30 yr old boyfriend who has no money and a sketchy job. The 23 year old lives at home with her mother and has only been a babysitter since graduating. My husband pays allowances to all of them - he says they are to help pay the student loans for the degrees the middle two don't use. He bought cars for the youngest three. He keeps them on his insurance as long as he can, which is until they turn 26. The 26 year old did not buy health insurance to begin at 26; the day after her birthday, she ran a red light, totaled her car, injured the other driver and then pocketed the insurance payout. Her father gave her money for medical bills. His name was on the title and we got a letter from the insurance company saying we might max out the limits and get personally sued by the other driver. We asked her to repay the MRI bill from the money she received for the totaled car. She and her oldest sister said we were trying to "starve" the 26 year old and that her father needed to "let her live her own life." They stopped speaking to their father and he blames me for that, but they keep taking the allowances he transfers into their accounts. Her mother gave her old car to the 26 year old - for free.

The 23 year old then left the lights on in her hybrid car and drained the battery. Yes, daddy gave her several thousand dollars to replace it. The 21 year old then crashed his father's car, but did not total it. (All of this happened in the space of 2.5 months). His father said he did not want to get angry with him because he is a rafting guide this summer and he does not want him to lose focus.

I work full-time and my husband is working overseas for a year, supposedly to make money to pay our debts and save for retirement. Yet, we still have debts and he has given the youngest two thousands this month alone, saying, "They have to have cars." This is a man who had us save for months to take a family trip to DisneyWorld at the new year. He delayed paying the mortgage or our car payments in order to do so. At the end, two of the "girls" said to me, "make sure Dad doesn't get a timeshare here. We don't want to have to come back here." When I told him that, he said they were just trying to be frugal; they didn't want him to go to the expense again. Sure.

Last weekend, the 23 year old said she would help me move items in the house for work to be done on the floors starting Monday morning. She blew it off. I told her her behavior was unacceptable, and her father claimed he corrected her, but he then gave her yet more money to go look for an apt. In DC - where, to my mind, she would not need a car. She does not have a job, though he claims she is looking for one. I foresee us paying for her apt & car while she works as a barista, if at all.

I think my husband is ruining these kids. I told him they have no respect for what he is doing; that they have become brats and and takers who show no character by barely working, taking money he needs for bills and retirement and then not even speaking to him. He will not listen. He saves his anger for me and makes excuses for them. He is now claiming the middle two are late bloomers and that even if I want to give up on them, he never will. I take it to mean he will keep paying for them forever. I can't see any option but to divorce him, assuming I can get a division of property to reflect all that I have poured into these losers over the past decade. If you've read this far, thanks for letting me vent and for any input you may have.

    Bookmark   July 7, 2013 at 4:29PM
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Your husband _is_ runing them IMO. With his help, they will never learn to function as adults, and when he dies and the money is cut off/run through, they will be in a hole so deep they may never get out of it.
What happens when you retire? Will he continue with the largesse? Probably. If being told to "let her live her own life" didn't spur him to say, "Well, fine, do it with your own money", then why would retirement?
Since your husband is unwilling to discuss this and blows off his anger on you, it doesn't bode well. If you're serious about divorce, don't focus on division of property- take what you can get and use your freedom to build on it. I'd let your DH know this is the plan, maybe a short sharp shock will get the message through. But if it doesn't, unless you want a lifetime more of the same, it's time to cut your losses and move on IMO.

    Bookmark   July 7, 2013 at 9:39PM
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Sooo glad I came across this site - helps to know that I am not alone. I too, am living with a lazy, unappreciative slob and I am about at the end of my ropes. My husband and I have provided this child with anything and everything that she could ever want or need and it is definitely coming back to bite us in the ass. The only problem is is that I am the only one who can see it. I raised two children of my own prior to my present husband ( of 21 yrs.) and I must admit that he was an excellent stepfather. But by the time he came into our lives, the first 2 children were nearly raised. And I believe I did a pretty good job of raising 2 very considerate, driven for success kids. Daughter number 3 - for me and number 1 and only for my husband - is a totally different story. I attempted to raise this one the same way that I raised my first 2 kids, but was criticized to no end by both my husband and his mother for being too hard on her (because I expected her to keep her room neat and tidy.) I think MIL thought that I should clean her room for her because that is what she did for her 3 kids!) And I can tell you that her son, my now husband, was a downright white trash slob when I married him. Luckily, he now has grown to respect my housekeeping abilities, even though he didn't want to upset the apple barrel by expecting his little girl to have to clean up after herself!!! And so now, here I am, pretty much facing the battle on my own with a very defiant, lazy and "entitled" kid that refuses to get off her butt to do anything in the way of housework. The final straw came when I finally found my voice and told her that if she did not put sheets on her bed by that evening, I was going to haul her mattress out to the curbside and have it picked up in the heavy trash day. She would then have to sleep on the floor or the love seat in the family room. She has been sleeping on her bare mattress for at least a month and on just a mattress pad for at least 2 months even though I have asked her repeatedly to get sheets on her bed. You can only imagine what the rest of her room looks and smells like! Of course, she didn't take me seriously because she never got the job done even though she had hours in which to do it prior to her softball game. When she finally returned home at nearly 1:30 a.m. and announced that she had to be up early for work (we have to get her up because she can't get up on her own) she nearly blew a gasket when I told her that she was now sleeping on the love seat. It was an ugly scene with her threatening to move out with her boyfriend and we'd never see her again. Believe me, I am soooo ready for her to move out that I told her to do what she had to do but not to go around announcing to everybody that I was throwing her out, because I was not - moving out was her choice. But the final blow came when she defiantly screamed "Screw you" to me - and her father only said "Hey, you don't talk like that." Well, this all took place last night and today daddy and daughter are just fine - she half assed cleaned her room and finally - after 3 months - got sheets on her bed. But, as would be expected, I am the mean mother that she will not speak to now - nor will I speak to her until she finds enough respect and appreciation for all I have done for her to come to me and apologize for what she said which was targeted just towards me. Just a few days ago, I told her how proud I was of her for having a true goal in life - to become a nurse. She is attending college, which her father and I are paying for along with her car expenses - minus gas - insurance, food, personal needs etc. while she pays no room and board - which I would never ask her to do so long as she is attending school and working - but I have since decided that she will now take care of ALL of her own expenses. NO RESPECT - NO MORE FREE RIDES!!! I am so tired of being used and abused by a nearly 21 year old kid that has had the best that life can give her - not just in material goods, but in my devotion to helping her succeed in whatever she needed. I am just so hurt, frustrated and confused. Would love feedback from you all who have taken the time to read my rant. Am I doing the right thing or do you have any more suggestions to a nearly senior citizen mom??

    Bookmark   August 10, 2013 at 4:51AM
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My expectations of children coming back home??? Be gone in 3 months.

    Bookmark   August 10, 2013 at 9:56AM
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Shell, you're doing the right thing _now_, pity you didn't do it sooner. Stick to your guns.
Funnily enough, when DD was living at home and then living in student digs mostly paid for by DH and me, despite my best efforts she was a slob. Once she moved to the other side of the country and was paying her own way, suddenly her apartment looks like something out of Home Beautiful. Perhaps a similar wake up call for your DD will do the trick (you can live in hope :-) ).
Personally I think your DD should be paying something towards her board and helping with the household chores: if she was in a shared household with her peers they wouldn't be letting her swan around like the Lady of the manor while they did all the work.

This post was edited by colleenoz on Thu, Aug 15, 13 at 10:57

    Bookmark   August 15, 2013 at 10:56AM
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Am I doing the right thing or do you have any more suggestions to a nearly senior citizen mom??

There are lots of ways you can approach this problem.

Here is my understanding of the issue - you really, really, really want her room to be clean. She and your husband don't care.

She is a college student, working and going to school, has a boyfriend, plays softball, and has to keep her GPA high (to get into nursing school). Cleaning her room is going to be way down on her list. She probably knows lots of college students who are absolute slobs.

From her point of view and probably your husband's, the person with the problem is you. However, I think it's perfectly reasonable for you to expect cleanliness in your own home if that's important to you.

If your husband doesn't think his little princess should clean her own room, he can clean it.

You can hire a professional house cleaner to clean her room and do her laundry, and in return expect your daughter to pay her own car insurance and cell phone bill, or pay whatever expenses of hers equal the house cleaner's fee.

You can require her to pay her own car insurance, cell phone bill, personal items, and you can clean her room and do her laundry. And pay yourself that money and do something really, really fun with it. Be sure to make it enough money to be worth your while. Then turn on some great music loud and clean her room with a smile on your face because you are going to do something great in return for that cleaning.

Whatever you decide, discuss it with your daughter calmly and politely, as one adult to the other, if you can. Give her a chance to come up with her own solution. Mutually agree on consequences that work for YOU.

When you are setting consequences for your daughter, try to make them something that isn't onerous for you. For example, when you're choosing an expense for her to pay, pick something that she can pay by herself and you won't have to be involved. Don't pick something that she has to give YOU the money and you pay the bill.

My daughter and I argued a lot during her late high school years. It's hard. Think out of the box when you're deciding consequences. We argued over laundry and putting dishes away. I got sick of arguing and finally picked my consequence of choice - if she didn't get her laundry out of the dryer by the next morning, then she had to sing "I'm a Little Teapot" complete with the motions. And I would film it on my camera.

Honestly, how could the two of you do anything but laugh while she's singing "I'm A Little Teapot"?

You can set all kinds of consequences - she has to tell you a joke that makes you laugh, she has to go have lunch with you at some middle-aged lady place, she has to look at her baby pictures with you for 30 minutes, she has to let you show her boyfriend her baby pictures. If you and your daughter are arguing a lot, maybe humor can help break the cycle.

Good luck whatever you decide.

    Bookmark   August 15, 2013 at 2:53PM
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My tears are real, as I wonder why and how my 2 children are back at home living with me yet they have a tendency to tag team both their father and me. My daughter, who is 30 years old and has 2 children 10 year old girl and 8 year old boy. They are great kids and loved by all. My youngest son moved back home last December after a relationship gone bad. He was so sad as well as depressed. He asks to come home and of course I said "Yes". Now I have my family with me and as a mother I thought what I did was what any mother would do in this case. The problem is now though my daughter feels she has no freedom so she acts out in the most horrible ways toward her father and myself. At other times, she is the same sweet girl I remember growing up in this same home. During her "Spells" She will curse and is so very disrespectful, toward me. Doing so in front of my grandchildren which is a heartbreaking enough worse yet, a very poor example for her own kids to see. Nothing I raised her to act like. I try to find excuses for her as feeling trapped and with no help from either father of her children it just seems her frustrations are pouring out on me. I do know better than to make excuses.however as hard as it is to bite my tongue I cannot permit this type of behavior in my home. I am about at my wits end. On top of all this my husband is ill and we cannot go forward with a treatment he needs because he must be stress free Due to the side effects...This is something I must find an answer to. I pray for her as well as all my family. I need the Lord's help to forgive her as well as to help me to forgive her too.I have many times yet she will have another episode as they get worse each time.I try to ask her to seek psychiatric help fro possible bipolar disorder or to have a diagnostic evaluation to find the cause of this behavior. She was such a sweet little girl and teenage years were not too bad she was very athletic which kept her disciplined But now???? I am at a loss. I do not want to lose her if all this animosity keeps building I only see things getting worse.

    Bookmark   November 15, 2013 at 11:03AM
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This is kind of serious problem but I am totally agreed with mom2emall this is actually a good option to make your child at least some kind fear from you.

    Bookmark   November 20, 2013 at 3:27AM
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