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ASK MERRILY/Merrily Preston - MY 19 YEAR OLD

Merrily Preston
By Merrily Preston
Posted on Oct 14,2008
Filed Under Personal Development , Opinions,

My 19 year old was wonderful all through K-12. He never got in trouble, he got good grades, he was popular. But for the year since he graduated, he sits around the house explaining why no one will hire him for a job he would want and why he doesn’t have to do chores and how he needs a ride someplace. I am so tired of yelling at him and I bet he knows every script I have ever tried. I'm ready to call the cops and have him thrown out of the house. Are there options?

Dear Options,

Legally you are no longer required to provide a home for a child after his 18th birthday.

Here is an option you may not have tried.

If you are willing to continue to allow him to live in your home, establish boundaries.   These can be communicated quietly but firmly with no need for yelling or a script.

Refine the following examples to fit your own situation.

Beginning on the 1st of next month you will owe $X.00 rent every month for your room, and you will have to make provisions for your own transportation.

Here is the list of household chores.  Please check at least (x) that you are willing to assume on a regular basis.

If these conditions are not acceptable, then find place to live where there is no rent, a free chauffeur is provided, and the home can be kept up with no chores needing to be done.

Enforce the boundaries if necessary.  

I know this sounds tough, but you are doing favors for neither him nor yourself as you choose the victim role. 

Merrily Preston is an Intentional Life Facilitator, who lives in Woodbridge. Her column is exclusive to the Alexandria Times. Email questions to,  or fill out an online form at .

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