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Old Nov 10, '11, 8:05 am
RLSnTexas RLSnTexas is offline
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Join Date: November 10, 2011
Posts: 4
Religion: Catholic
Default How do I deal with disrespectful adult children?

I have two sons (26 and 22). Unfortunately, they are from a broken home. I was divorced from their dad eleven years ago. Since then, I have remarried. The boys lived with me most of the time before they moved out on their own.

They disrespect me consistently. When I say something about it, they either get mad or laugh at me like I am stupid. I have helped both of them financially since they have been out on their own, even though it caused hardship for me. Most of the time I just gave them money, but on the few occassions it has been a loan, it was never repayed. If I asked them about it they would get mad and stop coming around. They never remember me on any special occassions such as birthdays, Mother's Day, etc. I recently moved my elderly parents here and they use them for money also.

I know I need to do something but I just don't know what to do. I have tried everything I know and failed miserably. I think a lot of this has been from the negative influence from their dad but they are adults and should know better. I can't bear the thought of losing them but the way it feels, I already have. Please tell me what you suggest.

Last edited by Michelle Arnold; Nov 10, '11 at 1:33 pm.
Old Nov 10, '11, 1:38 pm
Michelle Arnold's Avatar
Michelle Arnold Michelle Arnold is offline
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Join Date: May 3, 2004
Posts: 5,123
Religion: Catholic
Default Re: How do I deal with disrespectful adult children?

I think you already know what you must do. You must stop giving your sons money, and you must protect your parents from being exploited by their grandchildren. What it sounds to me that you need is the authority and self-confidence to refuse to be used by them, and the willingness to risk being abandoned by them (while knowing that such "abandonments" usually are temporary, however hurtful they are in the immediate moment).

I don't have any quick, simple answers for gaining the authority, self-confidence, and self-respect you need to stop tolerating your sons' exploitation and elder abuse. But I do recommend that you seek counseling from a qualified mental health professional. The Pastoral Solutions Institute may be able to either offer telephone counseling or a referral to a counseling provider in your area.

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