My fiancé and I were supposed to get married last fall but postponed because of issues with my son, who is lazy and whom my fiancé thinks is absolutely worthless. My son works part-time, keeps a messy, gross room, and doesn’t clean up after himself. My fiancé’s idea is to just kick him out, which I can’t do. I went to counseling through work, but it didn’t help me figure out a solution. I love my fiancé and want to be with him — we are hoping to be married this fall before we go on vacation — but I have a hard time with his attitude towards my son. Do you have any advice for me? — Protective of My Lazy Son
Sorry, I’m with your fiancé on this one. If your lazy 22-year-old son is destroying your relationship by living with you, you kick him out (or at least give him a deadline for when he needs to move out — say six weeks from now). Unless there’s something physically or mentally wrong with him, then, at 22, he really doesn’t need to still be living with his mother, especially if he’s disrupting her life like yours is. You’ve described a young man who flunked out of college, only works part-time, and doesn’t clean up after himself in the home he gets to live in for free (assuming you aren’t charging him rent). I don’t blame your fiancé for not being impressed by this behavior. And if I were he, I’d be frustrated by your enabling this.
It’s time to give your son some tough love — not just for your sake, but for his too. He needs to take responsibility for himself, and YOU need to make your life a priority and quit pushing it aside to enable to your able-bodied man-child to continue taking advantage of you. If you simply cannot fathom kicking your son out without some sort of safety net, offer to pay a security deposit and first month’s rent on an apartment for him. But beyond that, he needs to start making his own way. Flunking out of college shouldn’t be an invitation to move home and sponge off Mom indefinitely; it should be a wake-up call to get his shit together and start behaving like an adult.