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#1 of 19 Old 02-02-2011, 03:19 PM - Thread Starter
 
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My 19 year old son is out of control.

He is his first year in college and lives at home, well so far.

Lately he spends the nights at his 16 year old girl friends house and her parents seem to promote it.

I have a daughter myself, and would never have allowed for her boyfriend to spend the night.

Anyway, with the snow and icestorm we wanted him to be home before it gets real bad. He just came home to let us know he will be spending the night at  her house. I literally pleaded with him to not drive in this weather and he just laughed and said I can't tell him anything he is 19.

Besides the fact that I love him and hate to see something happening to him I am also missing a little bit of respect. He just laughs when I tell him something, I feel like crap.

We take care of everything for him financially, and all I'm asking for is a little bit of respect and maybe , please the feeling that he still cares about me some. I'm so unhappy right now and he is not comming home again and I don't want to loose him but I also don't want to be treated like crap all the time. It's I don't know, i don't know what to do anymore.

Please

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#2 of 19 Old 02-02-2011, 03:32 PM
 
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I think it is a hard place to be in to be afraid of losing your child by standing up to them but you do have the right to stand up to him.  So long as he is living in your house and getting a free ride, then he can't really use his age as an excuse.  He isn't acting like an adult by living off you and off his girlfriend's family.  Does he get more freedom than a 15 year old... sure, probably... but he does still need to be mindful of the fact that he is VERY lucky that he has a mom who pays for everything.

 

It isn't too much to ask for him to stay out of dangerous weather or to be respected.  You also have the right to cut him off.  He can get a job to help pay for his own things or to pay completely and move out if he doesn't want anyone to answer to.

 

He might hate you for awhile and not want much of a relationship... but he won't stop his behavior unless you give him reason to.  I was the adult by age living at home basically free and I never would have considered disrespecting my mom.  I still had to tell her where I was going, who with, and when i'd be back... and call if the plans changed.  Heck, my husband and I do that with each other too.  if one of us is really late, we have information to go off if necessary.

 

You didn't give too much information about just how disrespectful he is, but his being a legal adult does NOT mean you can't set limits and boundaries with consequences.  You have rights as the homeowner and and the person financing his life.  If he wants no one to bother him or ask questions or even tell him not to drive in weather that could kill him, he should reconsider how he chooses to live.

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#3 of 19 Old 02-02-2011, 08:46 PM
 
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I agree & disagree with the pp.

 

Yes as a person who is living off of your finances you can have some say in what he does, he has the right to disagree & not follow what you want.

 

Living on his own &having to pay his own way for everything wouldn't change his mind in going to spend time with his gf unless he had no money for gas.  It also won't fix what you see as a break in your relationship with him.

 

You want respect from him, are you giving him respect AS AN ADULT in return or are you still treating him like a kid?

 

Without more information I can't say that a kid who comes home & lets you know where he is going to be is kid who is out of control.

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#4 of 19 Old 02-02-2011, 11:55 PM
 
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At 19, you can tell him how you feel (as in "I would feel more comfortable if you didn't drive in this weather" or "I would feel better about things if you didn't spend the night at your girlfriends house") but he is an adult, legally, socially, and biologically, which means you can't do anything to try and control him. And as CarrieMF said, if you want respect from him, you have to give it to him and telling a 19 year old what he can and can't do is not the least bit respectful. It is basically telling him "I still think of you as a child I can control and not a bona fide adult who is capable of being mature and responsible.

 

You also have no right to judge his girlfriend's parents, they are different people then you and have different beliefs. If they feel the relationship between their daughter and your son is one where they are comfortable having him stay the night, it's none of your business. Their house, their rules. Allowing is different from promoting, if your DS is spending more time over there than at your house, perhaps that says something about how he feels about the interactions the two of you have.

 

I also don't see how he is out of control. He tells you where he's going, that shows responsibility. I never drove (legally blind so no licence), but I was spending the night with DH when I was younger than your son, I was living with DH when I was younger than your son. I was very much in control of my life and what I was doing.

 

Rules you can lay down with a legal adult living in your house:

 

- No SO spending the night

- No smoking/drinking/drugs in the house

- Tell me where you are going and when you expect to be back

- Supply a means of contacting you in case of an emergency

- Basically rules that control what can be done in the house or on your property. They go over best if these rules apply to all the adults in the house and not just one of them.

 

Rules that you can try to lay down, but shouldn't expect to be followed because a legal adult is a legal adult and has a legal right to make his or her own choices:

 

- Anything that attempts to control his actions or movements outside of the house, when said actions or movements are not against the law. These are the kinds of rules you wouldn't let your spouse make and expect you to follow. Like if your husband says "You aren't allowed to drive in icy/snowy weather" or "You aren't allowed to spend the night at a friends house", it doesn't matter if you would choose to or not, either way if he tried to make you follow that rule you'd probably give him a big "F U".


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#5 of 19 Old 02-02-2011, 11:58 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by treeoflife3 View Post
If he wants no one to bother him or ask questions or even tell him not to drive in weather that could kill him, he should reconsider how he chooses to live.


You can't tell a legal adult with a valid drivers licence when and where they are allowed to drive, unless it's your car they are driving. Sorry, it's not even an "my roof, my rules" issue since he's not in her house when he drives (at least I hope not, that would be murder on the carpet).


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#6 of 19 Old 02-03-2011, 04:46 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Anna222 View Post

My 19 year old son is out of control.

He is his first year in college and lives at home, well so far.

Lately he spends the nights at his 16 year old girl friends house and her parents seem to promote it.

I have a daughter myself, and would never have allowed for her boyfriend to spend the night.

Anyway, with the snow and icestorm we wanted him to be home before it gets real bad. He just came home to let us know he will be spending the night at  her house. I literally pleaded with him to not drive in this weather and he just laughed and said I can't tell him anything he is 19.

Besides the fact that I love him and hate to see something happening to him I am also missing a little bit of respect. He just laughs when I tell him something, I feel like crap.

We take care of everything for him financially, and all I'm asking for is a little bit of respect and maybe , please the feeling that he still cares about me some. I'm so unhappy right now and he is not comming home again and I don't want to loose him but I also don't want to be treated like crap all the time. It's I don't know, i don't know what to do anymore.

Please


Your son is now an adult. If you consider that his growing up is equivalent to your "losing him, then yes, you are losing him. If you think that treating him as a child will allow you to "keep" him, you are mistaken.

 

Spending the night with his girlfriend does not mean that he does not care for you. It does mean that he cares for her - do you feel threatened by that? Did you object to his driving in this weather to anywhere else but her house?

 

Just some food for thought.
 

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#7 of 19 Old 02-03-2011, 04:57 AM
 
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Idk, to me a 19 year old boy is not really an adult.  I know there are many that are, but most are still in that kind of twilight of teenager-hood.  That being said, he is 19, and you can certainly request that he do something, but he does not have to do it.  I imagine it is tough to see him so dependent on one hand, and so independent on the other.  Confusing and frustrating.

 

I guess if I were in this situation I would actually encourage him to be more of an adult, rather than less.  I think a big part of that is that he take some financial responsibility for himself.  If he wants ya'lls relationship to be more like roomates (which it sounds like he does), then he also needs to take the initiative to begin paying his way to some degree.  I'm not saying throw him out or anything, but a nominal fee for rent, help with groceries, paying his own car insurance, gas, and clothing.  A part time job would be plenty for him to cover this, make him more employable when he does graduate, and maybe in some way help to even out your relationship with him and let everyone know where they stand.

 

As far as his 16 yr girlfriend- meh.  I would rather have my kid sleeping with their partner at my home than in the back of some car or hiding out in the back bedroom at a party.  Kids are going to have sex whether we like it or not, all we can do is try to guide them to make smart, safe choices.

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#8 of 19 Old 02-03-2011, 10:23 AM
 
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Is it his car? How does he pay for it?

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#9 of 19 Old 02-03-2011, 12:01 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Anna222 View Post
I am also missing a little bit of respect. He just laughs when I tell him something, I feel like crap.

We take care of everything for him financially, and all I'm asking for is a little bit of respect and maybe , please the feeling that he still cares about me some.

 

when you put it that way, it sounds like you feel you are paying him to be nice to you.

 

I think you need to set some boundaries on what you pay for (for me that would be: tuition and books YES, car and spending money NO) and realize that just because you are doing your job as a parent, it doesn't make it his job to meet your emotional needs.

 

On a totally unrelated issues, he is an adult and if he doesn't speak respectfully to you or the other members of your household, there's no reason for him  to live there. Boundaries Boundaries Boundaries.

 

he treats you like a door mat, but you allow you. You can stop playing your part in the drama, and the drama will be over.

 

 

 


but everything has pros and cons  shrug.gif

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#10 of 19 Old 02-04-2011, 08:17 AM
 
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I have to agree that rules do kind of change once your child becomes an adult. I don't really see that your son is "out of control". However, I WOULD check your state laws regarding age of consent (as well as the consequences if he's in violation), and also remind him that should his g/f get pregnant by him - he WILL be having to go out and get a job to support his child.

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#11 of 19 Old 02-04-2011, 09:27 AM
 
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What happens, actually happens, in your home is something you have a right to make boundaries about. Respectfully, one would hope. So like MusicianDad said above, it's fine for you to say "I'd rather there be no alcohol or smoking in this house." etc etc. However, I think him staying with his girlfriend often is not your place to govern. You can certainly share your feelings on the matter, but the decision is his. He is 19. (In the interest of full disclosure, my 17 yr old stays the night w/ her older boyfriend so that's my perspective naturally ...)

 

Have you mentioned to him that you sometimes feel disrespected or dismissed? Is it really his behavior that gets to you or the fact that he's not really a child anymore and can basically do as he pleases? It's a tough transition sometimes.


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#12 of 19 Old 02-04-2011, 11:13 AM
 
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Originally Posted by UnschoolnMa View Post

 However, I think him staying with his girlfriend often is not your place to govern. You can certainly share your feelings on the matter, but the decision is his. He is 19.


I totally agree. Having a conversation with him about using birthcontrol that he controls (i.e. always wearing a condom rather than trusting that his girl remembers to take a pill at the same time every day) is where I think your place ends.

 

He is an adult. His sexuality is his business.

 


but everything has pros and cons  shrug.gif

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#13 of 19 Old 02-05-2011, 03:39 AM
 
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My brother is a very immature 30 y/o. He has many issues and sometimes ends up going back home for a while. My parents thought it was their right to set rules. Some I agreed with, but others I thought were too much for a 30 y/o man. One of the rules was to be home by midnight. My brother of course broke that rule daily. I guess what I am saying is at 19 he IS still a teenager and all those wires in his head are NOT connected properly. (There are studies showing this!) On the other hand he is 19 and thinks of himself as an adult and wants to be treated as an adult. I think it is time to gently tell ds that as an adult you expect a little rent money. Even if it is $200 a month. Also tell him, you will pay for college and put money on one of those cards for college food. You could even give him a prepaid gas card, making sure to figure out the exact amount he will need to drive to and from school and not a penny more. If he runs out of money for gas before the month is up then that is a situation an ADULT has to plan for. He will have to get a p/t JOB. Another thing that ADULTS have to do.

 

Then explain that as two adults living under the same roof, you both need to show each other respect. If he were living in college he would have to share a room with a stranger and have to be respectful. Tell him that as an adult he has the right to drive at any hour and under any condition, but as his mom, you expect him to show you some respect and at least consider your warnings of danger. You care about him and don't want to end up having to identify his dead body. It would be nice if he did drive in bad weather, that he at least text you when he arrives safely.

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#14 of 19 Old 02-09-2011, 01:25 PM
 
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I can understand that you are disappointed with the choices your son has made: to spend the night with his girlfriend and to drive in bad weather.   I would completely feel the same way.  And the fact that he laughed would really, really hurt.

 

It probably feels like you shouldn't have to talk to him about treating you kindly.  But you absolutely should.  Your perspective of him needs to change, and your expectations need to change, too.  This might change his attitude towards you. 

 


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#15 of 19 Old 02-22-2011, 04:49 PM
 
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I think if a person is an adult, they can support themselves,their lifestyles,and their decisions...... OP's son isn't really an adult till he can do those things. Till he can,he owes his mother respect,and a willingness to accomodate her rules. Sound harsh? I think not,considering he's lived with her his whole life and likely knows how his family feels about certain actions,whether it's being respectful driving in ice,etc etc.

           He is a technically not a minor,but it sounds like he is far from an adult.

 No matter if son agrees w/OP's standards or not, I believe it is 'my roof,my rules' to certain degree. maybe dialogue something like this?

Mom-"I feel uncomfortable with your tone,language and attitude to my requests. Do you feel as if you need more freedom to choose your own path?"

Kid-" yes, I do. I want to do what I want,and go with whom I want to,and since I'm an 'adult',you have no right to try and 'control' me like I'm a kid"

Mom-" I understand you feel this way,it's natural,you're grown now. however, you must understand that along with the sense of personal freedom being 'grownup' gives, it also comes with BIG responsibilties. I assume you're ready to take it all on? Job,rent,paying for school,food,cars,etc etc."

    ...Now in my imaginings, the kid either says heck yeah-goes and gets a job and an apartment,thus proving he truly is an adult.

OR...he doesn't and he and Mom hammer out an understanding of what it means to live as 'not minor child' under someones roof,and the responsibilites of such a choice. (much,much less responsibitliy than full adulthood and 'freedom'-

  

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#16 of 19 Old 02-22-2011, 11:42 PM
 
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When my young adult children are home, the rules are simple.  No drinking and driving.  Let me know if you are not coming home so I don't worry about you.  If you come in late, respect that others are sleeping. I treat them like  adults, and they act like adults. Did he suddenly turn disrespectful when he came of age, or was he disrespectful in his early teens too, and this (I'm too old for you to tell me what to do) is just a new reply? 

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#17 of 19 Old 02-23-2011, 06:17 AM
 
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I see our home as Ours, not Mine. I hope to provide a smooth launch phase for my kids so they can get the education they desire and ease into the full responsibilities of adulthood. I've never felt the need to dictate to them or control them, but I do expect them to give back the basic respect that I give them.


but everything has pros and cons  shrug.gif

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#18 of 19 Old 02-23-2011, 08:13 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Linda on the move View Post

I do expect them to give back the basic respect that I give them.
 


Yep. Like I said - the "rules" change when they get older, because they ARE young adults. You can set rules for what happens under your roof and/or when they drive yoru car. But you really can't as far as what they do elsewhere.

 

When my kids go out, I expect to know where they expect to be and when I can reasonably expect them home (yes, even the 19yo). So that I don't have to worry unreasonably. And ya know - if *I* go out, I afford them that same courtesy. If you're going to be late? Please let me know (and vice-versa). If you don't think you can drive home safely? Call me. (And I'll call you if I feel that way myself.)

 

But... I certainly don't tell my 19yo what he can and can't do when he's not at home. I have to trust that I've raised him to have some sense.

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#19 of 19 Old 02-25-2011, 04:04 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mtiger View Post If you're going to be late? Please let me know (and vice-versa). If you don't think you can drive home safely? Call me. (And I'll call you if I feel that way myself.)

 

But... I certainly don't tell my 19yo what he can and can't do when he's not at home. I have to trust that I've raised him to have some sense.


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