Question: Dear Luise: my oldest son went to college when he just turned 18, he was very young emotionially and pretty much grew up on his own, since the university was 3000 miles away. He met and married a local girl, and developed attitudes that were not even close to how this family thought or lived, he associated with very rich families while we struggle to give our three sons what they wanted and a better life then what we had, I was a very young mother and we looked more like sisters then mother and son, which my son resented since his friends teased him by wanting to date his mother. the girl that he married had a huge effect on my son with her attitude and her opinions about me and my family since she was Catholic and we were not, my son played hockey but his wife never supported him with that career, but was resentful of his traveling and the amount of girls who were chasing all other hockey players, but she never attended any of his games when he failed to make the big league, he was so concerned about her career he forgot about his own, over the course of the next ten years, him and his wife never came to visit us once, not at any christmas or any other special occassion, but managed to make the trip to her family several times a year, which my son attended with her, she always had an excuse why she had to drive the same distance to her family but not my sons, which hurt very much, then my husband got sick and past away, they did mamage to come home for that, only because he thought he was going to get an inheirtance which he did not receive, and never spoke to me for over a year, until I finally found out why, so I paid off their two credit cards, and gave them five thousand cdn. dollars for a down payment on a house, all which included a fifty percent exchange rate at the time, still not one visit home to see me, which was very hurtful. After he bought his house and a boat, he quit his job and went back to school, getting a student loan, and with me sending him money to make the house payments and the boat payments, but of course it was ‘chump’ change when you took off the exchange rate, but to me it was a lot of money, I used to joke that I was working for my kids, since I was always going to the bank to transfer money into somebody else accounts, but they didn’t think that it was anything, I was left very little once my husband died, so unexpectly, and with the small life insurance policy paid off my mortgate and put the balance in rsp account, but with the amount of money that they cost me each year i had to cash out the forty thousand dollars in rsp, leaving me with only my house and my income to live on. I aksed why they would always come to me for money but always visit the inlaws, for the good times, why didn’t they ask the family who apparently had it all together and was a much more balanced family then mine, anyway, he never did once come home to visit me until his marraiage ended and he was fired from his job he had a severe drinking problem, which I did not know about, since I never seen him, but when he was p ennless he came home, I thought it was a new start for the both of us, get him some help with his drinking problem, etc, but all it did was enable him, all while I kept sending him more and more cash, since he felt guilty about having an affaird on his perfect wife, who refused to have sex with him, he was celebate for over five years before he started to look elsewhere, which I thought was a mircle with somebody his age, and it was no wonder there was no children but the wife refused to mix her genes with his, and told him so, there would be no children in this marraiage becasue my son was such a low life according to her, but since she was catholic there would be no divorce either, after all she had toput on a good appearance to her family at my expense for the money which she blamed my son for getting them into debt, his marraiage finally ended and he married a girl with the same drinking problems as him and then he came home, only because his grandmother past away, and it was convient for him at the time, he had no where to live nothing, so he landed up here, he borrowed money from me which he said he would pay back once he received his inheirtance, but he never did. E.
Answer: Dear E.: It sounds to me like you have been trying to make sense of the senseless for a very long time. I have no idea why some adult children have a such a sense of entitlement but it is all too common. Many of us think we’re to blame and keep trying, when we should give up.
Your son’s an adult and is deep into living with the consequence of his poor choices. They aren’t yours to fix. You didn’t make them. He may not be willing to face up to the truth but you can. Only you can put a stop to being his doormat and financing his uselessness. You deserve so much better. Give it to yourself, please. Blessings, Luise