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#117400 - 05/06/07 11:47 AM Rules upon return?
Dotsie Offline

Registered: 07/09/08
Posts: 23647
Loc: Maryland
Okay, last summer it was wild in our home. All three kids were here and came and went until the wee hours of the morning. Because there are three, it seemed like every night, at least one of them was up or out late. By the end of the summer, hubby and I were exhausted. I can't tell you how much we have enjoyed the empty nest evenings. We can go to bed early and never have to consider who is still coming and going, who's in bed, and who is still out. Nor do we get the late night phone calls asking if so and so can spend the night, etc. I love it. It's peaceful! And I'm in to peace at this stage of the game.

But here's the scoop: our oldest is coming home to live for a few months to work, save money and then eventually get his own apt.

I am considering laying down some rules. I know I can't make him be in his room by 10 on week nights like we did when he was in high school, but out of respect for us, I do think we could have some kind of rules for week nights.

Any thoughts? Is this doable with 22 year-olds?
Founder Emeritus of Boomer Women Speak and the National Association of Baby Boomer Women.

#117401 - 05/06/07 11:59 AM Re: Rules upon return?
Mountain Ash Offline

Registered: 12/30/05
Posts: 3027
My son returned and we had all changed. Possibly the hardest work was me working between Dad and son...explaining to each the perspective.e.g. food choice (son garlic Dad not liking the smell)more than that we soon adjust to getting our own way and living together takes time.
I managed (very few hiccups) we learned from each other and life is rich.
Mountain ash
PS I always get phoned at what he is doing...late/early.
this was after one of the hiccups

#117402 - 05/06/07 12:52 PM Re: Rules upon return? [Re: Mountain Ash]
TVC15 Offline

Registered: 09/03/04
Posts: 2538
Loc: North Carolina
At that age it's hard to lay down the law. My son is 24 and almost out of the house now. He's got a place that needs a bit of work. When he returned home about a year ago (after a year in his own appartment) to do the same thing as your son, save for his own place, I didn't give him any curfew but like Mountain Ash said, a phone call is always appreciated. He was always good about telling me where he was going to be and he still is. I asked him to let me know if he would be home for dinner and most nights he's good about that too.
He's responsible for his own laundry and bills and it's been working out very nicely here.
I guess my suggestion is just to sit down with him and explain that you need to know where he is and when he'll return only because it worries you when you don't know, not because he's a baby who needs his parents looking out for him. I find that if I know in advance that he will be late, I can sleep better. It does take some getting used to though. I used to get up in the middle of the night to check if he were home but now I am sleeping right through.
Good luck!
Where I've been lately

#117403 - 05/06/07 01:16 PM Re: Rules upon return? [Re: TVC15]
Louisa Offline

Registered: 07/11/04
Posts: 2132
Loc: MA
It is harder and you do have to adjust some rules, but I believe you still have to have some. After all it is your house. They still need to respect your rules. I always went by the old "You're under my roof, you go by my rules." For instance, if they smoke and you don't want smoking in the house, they can't smoke in the house. If you can't lay down a 10 p.m curfew, then have something that states, no coming in late and making noise and upsetting those who have to go to work in the morning and no overnighters without letting you know so you aren't aup all night worrying. They should have to let you know ahead of time about meals and if they are going to be there or not. Simple things that boil down to respect. You'll be fine, Dots. You have a good relationship with your kids so I am sure you will all adjust fine.

#117404 - 05/06/07 01:57 PM Re: Rules upon return? [Re: Louisa]

I think paying rent and/or chores along with ground rules are very acceptable. Also, perhaps a curfew or giving a heads up so the parents are not awakened in the middle of the night is a responsible measure.

#117405 - 05/06/07 02:15 PM Re: Rules upon return? [Re: Louisa]
Edelweiss Offline

Registered: 06/05/06
Posts: 4136
Loc: American living in Europe
If you mean a curfew, Dotsie; I don't think you can do that with a 22 year old.

We lived through that on and off for about 6 years with our son. It was hard...very hard. In the end, we tried to keep out sanity by pretending that we were still living alone. His door to his room remained shut...I couldn't stand the sight of his room;...messy is not way to describe it.

We ate our meals alone. If he didn't specifically say he would eat with us, then we didn't cook for him. I agree with Louisa about the respect thing...but sometimes they are awful bitter at that age about even living at home. So we shut our eyes and just tried to grin and bear it.

I got to add that we now have a wonderful warm loving relationship with our son. So it isn't worth ruining what you have because of a temporary situation.

#117406 - 05/06/07 03:14 PM Re: Rules upon return? [Re: Edelweiss]
Mountain Ash Offline

Registered: 12/30/05
Posts: 3027
what I realise is that one day (if he has family) he (and my son) will see the reason beyond our actions.
I think its wonderful our children wish to return .Must be in our life story to have a few more years altogether.
Mountain ash

#117407 - 05/06/07 06:40 PM Re: Rules upon return?
mrs_madness Offline

Registered: 09/29/05
Posts: 217
Loc: Moscow
Our kids are 19 and 24. There is no curfew.

They know not to bang around and slam doors at 4 in the morning. Besides that we know that they've learned how to live for themselves and be responsible for their own comings and goings.

I think that it's unrealistic to set curfews for grown children. I know it's hard when you spent decades as The Mom looking out for your kids and making sure of where they were, and who they were with, and what they were doing, but that just isn't how it works anymore when they grown up. It's really really hard to do, but you've gotta let go of some of the mom stuff and let them be.

Atta girl Mom, it gets easier over time. You'll get more used it. You raised them well and they'll make good choices on their own.

#117408 - 05/06/07 08:55 PM Re: Rules upon return? [Re: mrs_madness]
Louisa Offline

Registered: 07/11/04
Posts: 2132
Loc: MA
I didn't really set curfews, but neither of them stayed out all that late anyway. I didn't set a many rules, and again, my situation was different, but the rules I had were kept or else. I feel that if they don't want to abide by the rules of the house, then they darn well better be ready to be on their own. I also agree with their paying rent. They need to learn there are no free rides. When my daughter was in college and couldn't afford much, I only took a stipend from both of them. But, she did a lot around the house and he fixed things for me. Later, when he lived there on his own, I charged him enough rent to cover the utilities. He took care of the property for me, replaced broken water heaters, had the house painted. (He is a contractor)

#117409 - 05/06/07 10:05 PM Re: Rules upon return? [Re: Louisa]
ShirleyValentine Offline

Registered: 04/29/07
Posts: 21
Mine's only 17 coming up 18, so he still has rules, like what time does he plan coming home, and how, and I will usually wait up (italian mamma mode) but then I am a night bird myself, so it's no hardship.

No doubt stuff will change once he goes away (and out of this country) in September, but on his return for holidays I will continue to expect to know times of return and how he is getting back, mostly because I hate mopeds and mopeds are the thing here, and I do not want him taking a ride on one from a friend.

I long ago stopped trying to keep his bedroom tidy: if he wants to live in a mess, let him.
By the same token I have stopped ironing for him, as he wears stuff once and then throws it in a ball somewhere. Sorry chum, I'm not that type of mum

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