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I have a 25-year old son, Tommy, who has long since graduated from high school and has virtually done nothing but sit at home. His older sister, Susan, graduated from college, has a good job and is engaged to be married. Tommy has always been a bit of an introvert and not really a “go getter”. My husband and I have encouraged him to go out and apply for a job (in person, on line and knock on doors) or look into a college or a vocational program – to no avail. He says that he doesn’t want to go to school right now and is looking for a job – but I can tell from our conversations that he is way too picky with the jobs he would consider.
I have repeatedly hounded my husband to take the lead on this as he is the “man of the house”, but Joseph, my husband, doesn’t really do anything about it. It’s not like we don’t want Tommy to live with us until he gets on his feet, but he is a grownup now, and it is time for him to be a man and be responsible.
Signed – Tommy’s Mommy
Dear Tommy’s Mommy:
I am sure you want Tommy to grow up and be a man, be responsible and hard-working and have a future. For some reason, Tommy is not moving forward, and it looks like your husband isn’t going to really take the initiative. If you feel like possibly it is an emotional or psychological reason, I would make an appointment for him with a therapist. If not, then I would try to find a Pastor, or a male mentor-type role model, and make an appointment for him to meet with this individual.
I have found in my own life, I have also wanted to “jump in” and fix everything for my children or do things for them, but they will never learn to be responsible, make their own mistakes or learn to be independent. Be sure to tell Tommy he needs to set some goals, find a job, or get into a school program. Follow up – and do not let him sit around and do nothing. By enabling Tommy, you are not preparing him for the “real world” and being out on his own. I would suggest you “draw a line in the sand” and after Tommy seeks professional help, you give him two months to get into a school program and/or find work. After that, tell him he has to find a way to start paying some room and board or go back to school to further his education and to make a career choice.
Readers – any suggestions for “Tommy’s Mommy”?
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Until next time~