Boundaries and respecting me and my home

by Margaret

I have 2 sons, the eldest is 20 and the youngest just turned 18. We live in Australia so the drinking age is 18!!
The boys haven't had contact with their biological father in over 5 years - their choice. My partner of 10 years left us 18 months ago.
I work full time, and my ex pays spousal maintenance which covers our rent.
Since my eldest turned 18 he continually tells me 'I can't tell him what to do because now he is an adult'
He works full time as a small supermarkets duty manage, he starts work at 1pm and finishes work at 9pm, gets home has a shower goes out. I see him for about half an hour each night. He gets home after midnight and can get up the next day anywhere from 11am - 12:30pm. I ask him to do chores everyday to help out around the house but usually there's an excuse.
I have asked if just one night he could stay home and have dinner with me, but he says he doesn't get to hang out with his mates or his girlfriend - who by the way I had to ban for being disrespectful to me. His room is a pig sty, he doesn't want to hang out with me, he's never pleasant, he's always rude to me. I have recently stopped escalating and getting into as teaming match with him. I remain calm and try to talk things rationally out with him. But he talks over me, speaks disrespectfully to me, and tries to bully me by being mean and gong around in circles with his arguments and points - baffling me - he would wear me down till I usually used to give up just so he'd shut up.
I don't have siblings or parents to brain storm ideas with and must days I think that if I weren't here that they could just get on with their lives because they obviously don't need or want me around.
I understand at 20 they want to go out but if they choose to live at home with me shouldn't they be more respectful and helpful? I work full time and end spending weekends, cleaning the yard, cleaning the house doing the washing, looking after the pets. I am over it all! Got any suggestions Margaret

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I'm an adult!!
by: Sara

Hey Margaret!!

I feel you!

When my son turned 18, his big act of maturity was to call himself off school. I had to leave work and drag his sorry behind to class so he didn't get suspended. Idiot.

Today, at 27, he is a model son and hang gets better.

The brain is not fully cooked until the age of 25. (Crazy, huh?)

However, that does not mean that you become a serving wench for the next 5 years.

You have done well. The arguing doesn't work, and they do twist and turn. It's like having a discussion with Donald Trump.

I did a few things back in the day:
1. Every time he took a turn in the discussion, I pointed it out. My son was just trying to get out of the chores, and had no idea how unable he was to carry on a conversation. This awakening had an impact.

2. I set clear rules. I didn't ask or remind.

3. I did not wait on him, buy his favorites at the grocery store, etc. None of that, unless he was a good roommate.

4. Since he was an adult, I called our living situation a roommate situation. In order to continue to live as an adult in my home, he had to contribute. My house, so I decided what that contribution looked like.

5. Twice I followed through on my promises by getting the paperwork to evict him from my home. (Because he was an adult, to remove him required a formal eviction.) I showed him the paperwork, took photos of his room, and told him he could explain his issues to the judge. We didn't have to go further, but I was prepared to do so.

You can do this! Good luck!

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