I need advice. I have this kid who’s 23 years old and has been out in the streets because I kicked him out. The thing is, he’s back home again and he thinks he’s the man of the house. He doesn’t wash his dish after he eats and is disrespectful towards his mom in some ways. I see things I don’t like but it seems my hands are tied. I wish I could just get up and go, go far away. Maybe it would relieve my headaches and my temper. It’s hard being a good father.
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When an adult son or daughter returns home after being away it is hard on everyone. In this case, it must be even harder because he was living in the streets. That is difficult to understand. At 23 years of age, he should be an able bodies man who can work and support himself. The fact that he lived in the streets makes me think that, perhaps, he was and is abusing drugs and/or alcohol.
The tone of your email makes it seem as if you are helpless to deal with your son. Perhaps that is because your wife does not want him living in the streets again. What is most important is that you and she work together in handling your son and his problems. For example, if he is living at home he should be required to obey house rules. Those rules should include cleaning up after himself, helping with household chores and contributing to the rent or mortgage. If he cannot do those things because he refuses then he must move out. The two of you must agree on all of this and present him with a united front. It is also important that, if he is drinking or using drugs, he must get help for himself and not use around the house. Neither you or your wife should provide him with any money. In fact, he should not be given money under any circumstances because he should be working.
As for your anger, it is important that you get it under control. One way to do that is to go for a type of counseling called “anger management.” By losing your temper, and I assume that is what happens, you accomplish nothing except to give yourself a bad headache. Also, before you express your anger, take a pause and ask yourself what the result of your anger be? Is it worth it to argue and yell? In reality, it never is. So, take a deep breath, wait, ask yourself if it’s worth it and walk away.
Best of Luck