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Any thoughts on helping pay for stepkid to move out?

SMto3's picture

Last week I posted about SS20 having his girlfriend stay over without communicating. A little more to the backstory is that DH got SS a job at his job, and SS does the overnight shift 5 days a week. His 2 nights off are the 2 nights DH does the overnight which is how he’s been getting away with sneaking people in/having guys over to party etc. I can get how his schedule might be a little screwy and having someone over during the night may make sense. The issues have been that SS seems to be an all or nothing person, at everyone else’s expense. We moved out of a 2 bedroom apartment into a 5 bedroom house last year, and a few months after that, SS broke up with the girl he has been with for a year (she had a mental breakdown reportedly over him, was put on meds and completely changed) and less than a month later began dating current girlfriend. Except now that we have a house, and because I let him stay in the basement to follow his music dreams (he has it set up half as a “studio”), he had his gf sleeping over almost daily I suspect. There was no dating period, no introductory period, he met her and boom, she was here daily. By the time I began really catching on and trying to end it, they broke it off for a couple of months. Now here we are again. 2 weeks ago, he mentioned her and said they were “friends” again, she was here visiting the following day. Last week, I posted about how I’m sure he thought I was asleep and brought her home at 9pm. We had a long conversation with him last week after that, and I took one of the poster’s advice and told him that if he wants her to sleep over, he’s going to have to start to save up to move out. He insisted that it’s not serious with her and that they are just figuring things out. 


Yesterday he offers to cook which he hasn’t done in years and of course I had my suspicions why, but didn’t say anything. Went out to run errands and guess who is hanging out on my porch? Ss and gf. No communication whatsoever again about bringing her around. It’s  not that I don’t like her (and I don’t), but I also do not want to see this as an example for the younger 2 we have living here and also my gut says he is going  to get this girl pregnant and being that he has zero family here and BM1 has been homeless for a couple of years (as per the stepkids), I feel that this will affect me. 


I try not to be judgmental and check my thoughts but I still worry that this girl isn’t right for him; her mom is in jail for stabbing her mom in an argument, the dad works in a hospital and allows SS to come and go as he pleases, they live in a tenement building and I am unclear on if the little sisters she has are her dad’s kids, which would mean I’m almost certain she’s sharing a room with them. I say all this to say that maybe the grass looks greener to her over here; no sharing a room, not in the projects and get to be with your boyfriend all day. She has no job, and no aspirations to go to school. She did try to be a tattoo artist but that didn’t work out. She’s super nice to DD5, that I’ll give her but overall she doesn’t have much going for herself and seems content with doing nothing in the basement and just be with SS all day with no responsibilities. But I feel as though he’s gotten a taste of having a female at your disposal all day and does not want to let that go. 


I’m trying to launch him, I do not want to continue stepfamily life with no end in sight, at least not living together. It’s not that I don’t care for SS20, I just feel that he operates mostly based on what he wants for himself as opposed to what is best for the household as a unit. I want no parts of it. Last I tried talking to him about getting a place, he said he was not “emotionally or mentally ready”. He said he wants to save for a car, he does not want to move out, even though at 20, he already makes only 100 dollars less weekly than DH. Dh, who on that salary, supported his 3 kids, was able to save to buy the 2 bedroom we left (we have it rented out), and never fell into debt. Yet SS feels he can’t do it. I have this overwhelming feeling of wanting to put a small down payment on a small apartment under his own name, and move him out under the guise of a Christmas or birthday gift. I just don’t went to live with him anymore. 


DH in case you’re wondering, gives the kid mixed messages. So while he told him sleepovers are okay as long as he’s not in our space, he’s also said he doesn’t want the girl here past 6am, which I’m sure ss does (I never barge in on him and am uncomfortable to do it). 


I’ve done the math. With a small down payment, SS could have an apartment of his own and still have a little more than half his check after rent. We live in a city, so no need for a car, really, that’s more of a want than a need. Just don’t know if this will backfire. 


Winterglow's picture

Stop asking him to do things (save up, start thinkging about doing things, etc.) and start TELLING him. "You will be moving out on 1st December, start looking for another place NOW." Of course, you'll have to get your DH on board - does he want his son to be a moocher, a sponger all his life? Doesn't he want to be proud of his son's achievements? The time to get him moving is now, while he is still capable of adapting because, given another ten years of mooching, he's never going to be able to stand on his own two feet. Present it as the kindest thing, the right thing to do for his son. If that doesn't work, then try the security angle - how can you feel safe in your own home if there are random people drifting in and out?  You have a duty to protect your children.

If your SS won't leave voluntarily, never forget that you can have him evicted. 

SMto3's picture

We try and try but one of the issues is that SS does these things on days DH is doing the overnight. Granted, SS is not overly loud and is pretty quiet overall but still. The truth is I don't like strangers in my house at all. 

Winterglow's picture

Nobody likes having strangers in their home. You feel invaded. You don't feel safe. Yoiur home should be the one place in the world where you really feel safe and comfortable. You really have to get it through to your DH that your safety is in question and that you are stunting your SS by letting him sponge off of you. Have you told him that you don't feel like the house is truly your home because of this open door policy? Your SS is never going to leave if he can have it easy - who would? He's never going to "feel ready" if you let him continue like this. 

SMto3's picture

I keep getting this exact message, and I believe it. He's never going to leave while it's this easy. 

tog redux's picture

The person you need to work on is your DH  - he needs to be the one to make his son follow house rules or leave. Why would this kid ever leave when he can do what he wants all the time and not have to spend any of his money on housing or anything responsible? Sit down with DH and tell him that a plan for launching SS needs to be made and followed through on. You can't do it yourself. 

SMto3's picture

He was responsible for 400 monthly but he also had the car, got a bunch of tickets, license is currently suspended and he is paying that off. Ss says he doesn't have much left over and he's probably right so I'm afraid he'll never move out at this rate. I told him I no longer want the 400 so he can save to get his own place, and every time I mention moving out, he says he isn't ready for that.

SMto3's picture

He agrees but he's not one to actually set it in motion. I also don't like the tension in the household because DH tries to get control but because he does the overnight, he doesn't truly know what SS is or isn't doing apart from what I tell him. Which is why we (I) got a camera for his entrance. I told Dh it is for safety but it's also for him to see with his own eyes what happens when he's doing the overnights. I'm thinking I want to offer to put the down payment so that SS can move out into an apartment under his own name. Once he's out, no coming back without a plan to move back out. I think it'll also help him grow up a little faster 

tog redux's picture

You and DH sit down and make a plan to launch him and then implement it. 

#1 - he starts paying rent again. You can put it in an account to give to him when he moves out.  He also pays for anything else of his, car, phone. 

#2 - DH gives him a date to be out, and tells him that he must move out of the basement and into an upstairs bedroom immediately, until he leaves. 

You are letting your DH off the hook. HE needs to take charge of this. If you pay the down payment for an apartment, you can't make him move out and you will lose the money. Focus your upset on DH and make him deal with this  

Cover1W's picture

And write it into a formal, signed lease agreement, just like the real world. So he's "ready" for it.

Exjuliemccoy's picture

I agree with tog - SS needs to move out of the basement. That's a privilege he hasn't earned or appreciated. I wouldn't feel safe with the current arrangement.

Make him less comfortable, and make him keep paying rent. He'll start chafing at the lack of freedom and look for an alternative. Then you can give him the rent money he's paid to sweeten the deal.

Winterglow's picture

I'd say these are all excellent ideas except for one thing ... Once he's out there's no coming back, ever.

By the way, does your SS know about the camera? If he does, is there another way into his place? If there is, put a camera on it too.

ESMOD's picture

When I was younger and a bit less responsible.. I F'ed up a lovely opportunity by screwing up my first semester at an Ivy league university.  So.. home I come to my Ivy league educated parents... and my mother decided that I was going to learn my lesson.  Nope.. no sitting about and licking my wounds.. If I wasn't going to college.. I would certainly be going to get a job to live on my own.

I got a job and my parents ponied up the deposits to set me up in an apartment on my own.. where I had to pay my bills going forward.  Which I did.  I did not have a car either.. but I could take public transportation to work.  

I agree completely that your husband has to be 100% on board with the boundaries for the boy.

If no overnight "opposite sex" guests is a rule.. then it's a rule... The kid needs to understand that living there is a privilege.. and that with that come responsibilities.  Shoot.. HE may not want that girl over as much.. as she is likely there more than he wants to escape her less than great living environment.  Give him the ability to tell her that it's not allowed..

I know it's harder to walk that back now.. but he can hear that it isn't working for you guys.. and these are the rules going forward.

If you are inclined and could afford it.. there is nothing wrong with giving him a gentle roll out the door by helping to set him up in a new place.. if his dad agrees that is worthwhile doing.  That can be his other option if he doesn't like the house rules.

lieutenant_dad's picture

So SS isn't paying any rent but YOU feel uncomfortable "barging in" to rooms YOU own and pay for?

Think on that. Really think about how crazy that is. Think about how absolutely BONKERS it is that you and DH are working to afford your beautiful home, and this kid gets a free sex den complete with studio for FREE AND he feel comfortable enough with no shame to bring over people he KNOWS upset you to have over.

And instead of getting angry and barging in, you're scared/worried/whatever about enforcing the rules in YOUR OWN HOME THAT YOU PAY FOR.

Find your voice in this. Put your foot so far up DH's behind that he tastes the soles of your shoes and tell him that this crap ENDS. You're willing to compromise time for SS to move out. You're willing to put the deposit on an apartment. But SS goes, or both he and SS go. No discussion. That's how it is.

You've been polite and kind for too long. SS is PURPOSEFULLY bending and breaking the rules because he has no respect for you and his father, and the home that you've graciously allowed him to stay in. SS knows he has a sweet deal, and he knows he's wearing you both down to where he'll get to live rent-free with his flavor of the month who can devote all her time to him. Nothing about this seems genuine, to you or her or even himself. 

So, get angry. Find your voice. End the chaos in your home. Get rid of your problem(s).

SMto3's picture

Way too long. I'm actually feeling more and more at peace with the idea of getting my piece of peace. I think it's time for doing. Ss is very "nice", but in that niceness, I feel he takes advantage. As per your advice last week, I did speak to him, let him know that she shouldn't be a "dirty secret", that if he wants to be in a relationship living with someone, I support it and would help him find his independence. His response was that he is figuring things out and doesn't know if he wants a relationship. But then brings the girl again yesterday, and I'm sure she slept over. He's taking advantage, again. Doesn't want commitment, doesn't want responsibility but wants the freedom to do what he wants without paying the price for it. He needs a "gentle" rolling out as per the poster above. If not, DH is going to have to figure it out with him. I don't want this around my kid. I know for some it might be benign but I just feel like I'm carrying a burden I shouldn't have to. 


ESMOD's picture

It looks like per your other blogs.. this has been just progressing since much earlier this year.  At this point, he needs to hear the truth about how his repeated pushing of boundaries has made this living arrangement impossible going forward.

1.  You don't want your other kids to see defacto "living together" with your latest interest is allowed in the home.

2.  You don't want a parade of people that are not known to you in and out of your home. side chicks.. fellow musicians.. ne'er do well friends..   It's only a matter of time before one of them ends up stealing or destroying something in your home.

3.  He makes enough money to sustain himself and if he wants to ACT like an adult and make decisions like who gets to come and go.. he needs to be making those decisions in his OWN home.. not yours.

So... here is the deal/offer  He moves in the next 60 days.. and you will pay up to X amount towards deposits and start up costs ( trip to walmart for plates and towels.. etc...)  He must find a place... or agree to a place you find within 30 days.. and then move within the next 30 days after that.    While he may "like" his current deal.. it is no longer an option for him.

I guess the only possible back walk would be that he could stay with ZERO guests over that aren't pre-approved for every visit... like a set schedule where he has band mates over etc.. You would then install security cameras and alarm stuff to monitor that he doesn't breach the rules.

tog redux's picture

You shouldn't have to carry this burden -  your DH should be dealing with it. They are both taking advantage of you by being nice and helpless. 

Let DH know that you expect SS out by January 1, and he can decide how he wants that to happen, but it's happening. DH wants to make you the bad guy by claiming he can't do anything because he doesn't see it happening? That's utter BS. He can call his son and say that you told him what's going on and it needs to stop. He can move SS up to another bedroom and put a lock on the music studio.

Why are you afraid to make DH do what's his responsibility - parent his kid?

BethAnne's picture

You can't sign a rental contract on behalf of your ss. If you end up doing all the leg work and getting the rental set up for him without him also being on board with this plan and signing the contract himself, you will be liable for his rent. 

If you can afford it I would seriously consider this option. If money can solve a problem and you have the money available, sometiems it is best just to spend that money. The problem is that you also need your husband on board with this plan and your ss either on board too or your husband willing to follow up with consequences if ss does not agree. You also need your husband to commit to not covering ss's rent should ss fall short some months. 

As a side note, I am not sure a little under half income for rent is afordable. I have always been told that a max of a third of income should be put towards rent to make it afordable. I am not sure what is normal these days but when I was in my 20's I never lived alone, it was out of reach financially for me so I had room mates (or shared with a boyfriend) and we split the rent. It sounds like a one bed appartment might not be affordable for your ss right now. So either a studio or living with others may be better options. 

SMto3's picture

Like I knew was the case, gf slept over and SS text DH to tell him that she couldn't go back home until 2pm because her father is at work and she forgot her keys at home. I just told them the plans, told SS that he is going to have to move out and I will help him find a place. He had no other choice but to agree. His face looked stressed and sad but I just can't do it. I see what this girl is doing and I don't like it. Either he's a good actor or he's even more ignorant than  I thought. DH was present and upset also and didn't say much to what I said. He told him that he didn't want this to be the case and we've already spoken to him. I told DH on the side in private if he can't get a handle on this and launch him out, our marriage is in for some issues. I even asked now why she can't go to her father's job and get the key. I suspect she's lying, she just doesn't want to go home. 

lieutenant_dad's picture

She doesn't want to go home and SS doesn't want to move out because that makes the responsibility "real". I hope SS sees "oh, you mean I'll be responsible for her if I move out and she follows?" However, I have a friend much older than SS that didn't see that with his GF (now wife). She slowly moved things into the house, would be "too tired" to go home, would drink so she couldn't go home, etc. She "worked", but he was working two jobs because he owned his home and paid the bills. She got a job for a bit, but now they've had kids and she's a SAHM. He's back to working two jobs to pay for them.

He's likely going to "dump her" to try and stay. Don't let it happen. You've told him to go. Now he needs to go. If she follows, that's on them to figure out. But don't let them both dig in deeper to where you end up like my friend.

tog redux's picture

Good for you for laying it out there.  Nothing will change if you keep tiptoeing around DH and SS's feelings.

justmakingthebest's picture

I would gladly pay a deposit and even help with furniture if it meant I could get a fully functioning man-child out of my home. 

It really comes down to what you are willing to pay for peace in your home. The biggest thing will be making sure that he understands that coming back is not an option.

JRI's picture

Our situation with SD59 is slightly different but I agree 1000% it is worth it to pony up to get them out.  Whatever it takes.  My blood pressure got bad enough to put me in the hospital.  DH made it clear: out and not coming back.  I made it clear to him that if he ever lets her move back, Im leaving him.

TheAccidentalSM's picture

There wasn't a chance in hell he could pay it on his own and it was worth it to get my peace of mind back.

He didn't have visitors but he was so annoying.  It was like going back to my flat sharing days but having zero choice of room mate and never being able to move to get away from a bad situation.  

If you can afford it comfortably, I think its worth it.

tog redux's picture

Her issue is though, that he doesn't really want to move out, and Daddy doesn't want to push him.  If he wanted to move out but couldn't afford it, hell yeah, pay for it. But he's not "emotionally or mentally ready" to move out, lol.

ESMOD's picture

Yeah... but he doesn't get to pick and choose what parts of being a "grown man" he gets to participate in.

Based on his response.. he almost seems like he is stuck with this girl to an extent.. who may be kind of using him to avoid a home she wants to get out of (red flag because that is the kind of situation where she might see her ticket out is to get pregnant by the SS).  Like he doesn't know how to make her leave. because he is likely a little sick of her too.. after a point.

But.. again, I would put it to him this way.. you say you are not ready.. but having your casual interests staying the night is a decision that adults get to make in their own home.. not someone else's.. so if you think you are grown enough to make that decision.. you are old enough to be in your own place.  We will help you get there.. but we are not tolerating the current situation here in our home.

SMto3's picture

So while my dh and SS went to pick up my washer and dryer I went down to the basement to talk to the girlfriend and she said she didn't realize she wasn't supposed to be staying over! I told her that we are going to work together to move SS into his own place so they can have their privacy. 

tog redux's picture

See, SS is playing you.

My SS20 is the "nice guy" kind, too. Never rude to me, always personable and polite - and manipulative as all hell using "who me lie?" as his way to do it.

SMto3's picture

My friend (and you guys) convinced me to go down and talk to the girl. "It's YOUR house" my friend said to me. "Approach her from a mom perspective". So I did. And what I found is exactly that. SS it seems, has not been honest with her about her ability to stay here, just like he's been being dishonest with us about all the things he does. He hides it behind the nice guy act but he needs to move out. His credit shouldn't be that bad, I'll start looking and giving him choices but he has to make a choice and accept responsibility because as you all have said, he has it too easy here and there is no reason for him to want to leave. H is on board with it, or so he says, so one foot in front of the other we move towards getting this man child out. 

As per the gf, she said that he says we don't understand him and that he left her because he felt himself getting vulnerable and the feeling felt bad to him (prob stems from the abandonment). I told her I've been telling him for years to get therapy but he refuses. It's not that I don't want him to be with her, I just feel like he has a lot of stuff to figure out and being with someone may prolong that process. But I could be wrong. In either case move out he must. 

tog redux's picture

Well, cry me a river. If you guys don't understand him, then all the more reason he should move out.

My SS has had ENDLESS therapy, and nothing changes, he's still the victim in every scenario. He learned it well at his mother's knee.

Thumper's picture

he said he was not “emotionally or mentally ready”.

Translation---I am going to stay here until I am order by a court to leave.

Kick him out.




Harry's picture

Look at it as a great Christmas present to yourself.  Isn't it's better to pay a few dollars and get him out. Then putting up with " The love motel "  woman who you don't know living in yout home.  Also spend money on changing the locks ASAP when he moves.   Make it clear to DH he not moving back 

SteppedOut's picture

He makes enough money to support himself, you should NOT pay for it, or he will keep coming back for more money. 

Wtf is he doing with all his money?? No rent, no car...