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22 yo stepson

(11 Posts)
Jo1960 Fri 24-Jul-15 10:21:29

Hi, I would like some help with a situation involving my partner and her 22 yo son.
I’ve been living with her for just over 5 years and while our relationship is generally good, her sensitivity to anything to do with her kids (22 yo son and 12 yo dau) causes a lot of tension between us. I’ve found it very difficult not least because I have a 16 yo daughter from a previous relationship who I don’t see very often and ideally, would like to spend more time with. This feeling is accentuated when I see her kids behave in ways that I think are very disrespectful to their mother who as a single parent before we met tried her very best to ensure that the kids got everything they could possibly want – new clothes, iphones, laptops, u name it. She doesn’t seem to get much back except demands for more and more.
J, her son, recently graduated with a good degree which, to be honest, surprised both of us as almost all his time at home was spent laying in bed until 3 or 4 in the afternoon and going out 6 nights a week. We since found that his student loan was overpaid and he realised this but instead of paying it back, he spent it. Now, having gradated, he stays at home, doesn’t get up til 3 or 4, says he’s applying for jobs but only seems to want door to door sales as this fits in with his sleeping arrangement…

We have both tried to motivate him by sending graduate job links, I even found a link to his uni’s career advice centre which he had never heard of, but still after 6 weeks of being at home, he is ignoring the help he is being offered, the dirty dishes pile up in his bedroom and he doesn’t do a single thing to help around the house. He cooks food at 2am, filling the house with the smell of bacon and eggs as his lifestyle is totally out of sync with our working and school days.
I am soon to face redundancy myself and the thought of my making the best of this by working in the home while looking for another job fills me with foreboding as I will be doing this against a background of someone with every opportunity to get a good job, but who really doesn’t try. I dread the thought of spending more time at home and listening to him get up to make breakfast at 4pm...
Yesterday my partner tried to get him up, as they had previously agreed, to go to town and buy some books, but he yelled at her and she fled in tears. This was 1-30 in the afternoon.
I am wondering if the better option for me is to face my own redundancy in another place and try and help and provide more support to my daughter as I seem to be on a hiding to nothing with my partner and her children.
Has anyone else experienced this sort of total demotivation? My partner loves her son dearly and his attitude depresses her but as an adult, I think he really needs to get his act together and the present situation is just allowing him to do what he wants with no regard for others. As I'm not his father, I feel very constrained as to what I can do – his attitude when we talk is just “yeah yeah” but then he resumes what he has been doing…aaargh!

Melonfool Fri 24-Jul-15 12:00:07

Where is his father in all this?

What are the home arrangements, do you own a house together or do you live in 'their' house?

I wouldn't put up with it but I am dreading that age as dss [14] already lays in bed until midday in the school holidays and does very little round the house. Where is he getting money from?

I would be insisting on a contribution to the household, out of his JSA if he gets it, and if not, I would be telling him to get money by working and if he doesn't - he's out.

Supporting youngsters who are really trying is one thing, but supporting lazy gits is something else. So, he either gets a job or goes back into some kind of education.

Presumably he has to pay back this overpayment - how is he going to do that?

Jo1960 Fri 24-Jul-15 13:26:01

Hi, thanks - my own feeling would be to set a deadline, but it isn't my house, its his Mums. His Dad lives in the ME and has never had any interest in him.

Its v difficult to talk about this situation at home as his Mum/my DP, is racked with guilt about "not providing a father" and is something of a soft touch for any pleas for money. If I raise my resentment at what's happening (for the 2nd summer in a row), it'll end up in a row between us. She works extremely hard and, to be blunt I think he's an ungrateful selfish git...

No idea whatsoever how he will pay back the loan. His Mum would prob pay it if she had the money but thankfully doesn't. I am a tad nervous she might ask me to pay it off with my redundancy payment - but I wont do that. Sorry if that sounds a bit unsupportive, but I think its plain wrong. I fear a longterm standoff with him arsing around for months if not years. We can't even take advantage of his being at home and take a break for a few days as I know the dogs wont be fed or exercised or cleaned up after while we r away. Really don't know what to do.

Melonfool Fri 24-Jul-15 15:47:31

Well, you can take a break with the dogs.

You do need to tell her but he's not alone in being a feckless 22yo and neither of them are alone in showing disrespect to their dm, this happens a lot I think.

Definitely don't pay off his loan.

Kkaty Fri 24-Jul-15 16:39:31

YES I most definitely sympathise with you. I am at home with younger kids and one of my DSDs is 19 and going to college next year - with few hours she will be around the house a lot and I am absolutely dreading it.

My OH, likes yours, just lets her be rude and walk all over him and she is seethingly resentful of anything that I do - can hardly be bothered to say thanks for dinner even. I do her washing, help her with all sorts, but I'm the one she targets any of her anger at and I don't think I'm willing to do his anymore.

So yes, I know it's awful giving ultimatums, but you can't be expected to 'cope' with a grown adult. No matter who's house it is - really it is both of yours, you and your OH and you should both be able to have peace of mind. Once they've reached adulthood then staying with you is something that boy should be grateful for and be accepting any of your 'rules' - and be actively making his own plans. Your OH is probably, like mind, taking the easy route by not challenging her son - tell her how close you are to leaving - you don't have to put up with this!

florentina1 Fri 24-Jul-15 20:43:18

Sharing a house with adults is always hard. When one of them refusing to act responsibly and behaves selfishly without regard for others it becomes impossible. It seems this no longer feels like your own home.

Is it possible to tell your partner, without accusation or acrimony, that for the time being you need to be apart from this family dynamic. She won't be forced to chose between her partner and her son and you could all get a breathing space to reassess your living arrangements.

paxtecum Sat 25-Jul-15 07:09:14

Find accommodation that will take dogs and have a break.

Jo1960 Sun 26-Jul-15 15:04:45

Thanks for your good thoughts and wishes, folks smile

Wdigin2this Tue 28-Jul-15 21:39:22

I really feel for you in this situation and very much understand your dread of being home more with...let's face it, a lazy and thoughtless adult who is basically sponging off the other adults in the house! My advice, do not under any circs pay off his loan, sit your DP down explain exactly how you feel and ask her whether she can see that she is enabling her son's behaviour, and doing him no favours, if she can't then you probably haven't got a future together...sorry!

thepurplehen Wed 29-Jul-15 07:04:58

It sounds like she agrees with you about her son and apart from her financial generosity is on the same page?

What would you like to see her doing to deal with the situation?

I'm sure she wants the best for her son but ultimately he's a grown man and there's only so much you can do.

If you can talk about her son in a way that sounds supportive, she might be more receptive and you could come up with a plan together.

Jo1960 Wed 05-Aug-15 11:46:53

Thanks, I have sat wth both of them but it hasn't been as helpful as I would have liked. His attitude to bth of us is "yeah, yeah" and very dismissive. I don't think anything is going in there at all. She will say things like "you must take your dirty dishes out of your bedroom, you're 22 and an adult" but 2 days later the dishes are piled higher. I think she knows she is enabling him, but always says "He knows I wont throw him out".

He is off to London today for a job interview but last night was very negative about it the last interview he had he told them that he didn't really want the job, he wanted to be a standup comedian...he doesn't have any ability in that area, (sorry). Fingers crossed he will get some work soon. Its been almost 2 months now - just the same as last summer, but at least we knew he would go back to uni last year...

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