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Old 04-04-2006, 10:19 AM   #1
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Unhappy What do you do with a kid that only cares about himself?

My oldest son.... I don't know what to do about him. He says he's an adult, the law says he's an adult! But, he continues to act like a 12 year old!!
We have helped him so many times and he doesn't seem to appreciate ANYTHING!!!!
When he moved out the first time, his roommate just up and left him with a month of bills, we loaned him money to help. Still hasn't paid us back.
Helped him get a job up here with me and all he does is gripe and complain about his pay and who he works with. He STILL doesn't have a license, failed the written 3 times now, much less a car, so, I'm picking him up in the mornings at a store, and then driving him all the way home, 30 minutes out of my way. When he lived with us, he would take a shower after work, leave, come back about 8 or later, sometimes after 10. Was gone the entire weekend. Blew his money. Drank with his buddies {he's only 20, get's it from his "friends"} Last weekend when we were shoveling and hauling dirt for 4 days, he was asked to come over and help since he owes us money{ btw, normally it wouldn't bother us, but, we're talking almost $500}. Couldn't on Saturday cause he had a party to go to. Told me he would come over Sunday. NO SHOW!!!!!! He called at 8pm and I didn't answer the phone, I let the recorder answer. Monday, he said he called at 12:30 and noone answered, no message. We were inside eating lunch at that time!!! He said he called again and the phone just rang as though, someone was on the other line. BULL!!! The only other time the phone rand it was MIL and NOONE beeped in!! He had to stay at his roommates girlfriends house last night so that he would have a ride to work, HE DIDN'T SHOW UP!!!!! He called in 45 minutes late and said someone stole his buddies truck!! BULL!!! He could have called me as the girlfriend only lives 5 minutes away from here. This is the first time that he has had the responsiblity to come in on his own, without me bringing him and he does this. I have sat here shaking from worry, and now, I'm so angry that I'm crying!! This is only a very small example of things that he has done in the last 5 years. I'm at my wits end and I want to tell him NO MORE!! I'm too afraid that he won't land on his feet. I don't want him on the streets, but, I can't do anything for him anymore. DH is always telling me to quit babying him. I guess he's right. I need to let him fall before he will do something and act like an adult that he says he is. But, it's SO hard!! My youngest is doing so much more and is more responsible than he is. There has always been competition between them and it's so much worse now. He feels that we do more for the youngest, and that is so not true!! He does for himself!! We have told him, why should we help him when he won't help himself.
Sorry, I'm babbling, I know. I'm just so overwhelmed right now. I can't talk to anyone.

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Old 04-04-2006, 10:31 AM   #2
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Texasgirl, so sorry to hear of your troubles. Kids break us, don't they? Sometimes the best thing for them is to let them go, let them fail (HARD!) and help them recover. Part of my morning prayer is the bless me with bigness to grant all their reasonable requests and the courage to deny them privileges I knw will do them harm. The courage is the hard part.....I wish I knew what to tell you, but I don't. Just know your friends will always listen. Hugs to you!
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Old 04-04-2006, 10:43 AM   #3
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Thank you michele and for the pm!! It is just so hard. He was always the sweet and goofy one and we moved down here, and he changed so much!!
He got with friends that smoke pot and are all drop outs and run around like idiots and their parents don't care becuase they're either on drugs or drunk all the time. We tried when he was under age to keep him away from all of them. Now, I guess, I have to let go and pray that he lives through the stupidity!! It HURT'S so much!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Old 04-04-2006, 10:53 AM   #4
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You are there to love and support him, but not to pay his way or undo his decisions.
Always try to keep away from comparisons. Your other is a different person. You have similar expectations that they make good choices, be reasonably successful, and avoid trouble. But if one is a doctor and one a carpenter, great! If one is a mechanic and one a store clerk, no big deal.
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Old 04-04-2006, 11:06 AM   #5
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my mom and stepdad had a similar problem with one of my stepbrothers, except he was on all kinds of drugs and stuff. they ended up kicking him out of the house the day he turned 18, and didn't hear from him for about a month after that. he cleaned up his act for awhile, got his GED, and signed up to join the navy. he ended up getting back on drugs again, and the navy wouldn't take him. he's 19 now, and working with his dad, off the drugs again, and taking 1 or two classes at the community college.

this is awkward for me to talk about, b/c i'm not exempt from it, but my generation has a real problem when it comes time to get out on our own. We tend to have a sense of entitlement: we think we just get to go to college, get to have an MBA, and then we are a shoe in for a BS job at a corporate office that pays us 100K a year. that was certainly my plan for life as of a few years ago.

now, struggling to pay for tuition and rent, i have real respect for money, even more than i used to. my parents made me get a job when i turned 15, and I worked all through high school, had to buy my own clothes if I didn't want my parents to pick them out for me, bought my own car, etc. But despite all that I had no idea how much rent/mortage and food, utilities, etc. all cost. I think what kids my age need is to take a hard fall once, and learn from it.
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Old 04-04-2006, 11:09 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robo410
You are there to love and support him, but not to pay his way or undo his decisions.
Always try to keep away from comparisons. Your other is a different person. You have similar expectations that they make good choices, be reasonably successful, and avoid trouble. But if one is a doctor and one a carpenter, great! If one is a mechanic and one a store clerk, no big deal.
My point was not to say that I'M comparing them, THEY have been on a competition thing for a long time. I never say anything like, your brother did this or your brother did that. I don't care what they do, I just want them to be happy and alive! I'm sorry to have come off wrong like that.

After rereading what I wrote, it sounds as though I'm comparing them. I was just saying what the other is like to you guys. Sorry.
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Old 04-04-2006, 11:12 AM   #7
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Tough love sounds like what he needs. Let him fail, but be there to support him emotionally (not financially). Let him know up front what you are doing though. Tell him he is being selfish and not acting like an adult and you are not going to enable that because you love him too much to let him make a mistake like that. Tell him he is on his own, but you are there for him to talk and stuff like that, but you are not bailing him out of the situations he is creating for himself.

I know that is MUCH easier said than done though.
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Old 04-04-2006, 11:14 AM   #8
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No I don't think you did and I'm sorry I implied it. I don't know how you can tell your son not to compare himself with his brother, but you and I know he needs to not do that and find his own success. sorry for the confusion.
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Old 04-04-2006, 11:19 AM   #9
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GB, it IS hard. I know that I have to though, or he will never know what life really is.
Robo, don't worry about it. I know he needs to stop. He is even mad that little brother, that has always been so tiny all his life, grew taller than him by 3 inches in the last year. He can't stand it!! I wish he would get a license, car and get his life going. I know he is only 20, but, if he had a girlfriend, I don't think he would be so alone all the time and he would feel better about himself.
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Old 04-04-2006, 11:20 AM   #10
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I very much agree with the "tough love" suggestion. I suppose we have all felt taken advantage of by either our children or a family member at times and have to learn to do the right thing not always the most expedient thing at the moment. You will probably be surprised how quickly he does land on his feet if you practice the tough love method. I know how it hurts to have them not act responsibly, but it is just something he needs to learn and you are probably the only person to really teach him that(as hard as it is). My best wishes are for you and it will get better, even if it doesn't seem so now.
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