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How to Get Addicted Adult Children out of a Parent's House

by JanetB

It's hard to watch your children suffer, no matter how old they are. If your child is now an adult, and is suffering because of an addiction, it's hard to know what you should do. On the one hand, you want to take care of your child and solve all his problems. On the other hand, his presence in your home is destructive to him and to the rest of your family. Getting your addicted child out of your house can lead him to the help he needs and provide peace for the whole family.

Set rules of behavior for your addicted child while still living at home. It's your house, not his. You have the right to demand respect and set a code of conduct. Make it clear to him what the consequences are if he violates the rules, and follow through on those consequences. Do not allow him to exercise his addiction around the house, and remove or hide securely any temptations in the way of alcohol, prescription drugs, and the like. Insist on zero tolerance of any addictive behavior.

Prepare a back-up plan if your child violates your house rules and succumbs to his addiction. Find a treatment facility that will take him on a moment's notice if need be. Don't let him stay in your house once he's violated your rules regarding his addiction.

Seek a support group of other parents who are going through or have already gone through the same dilemma you are now facing. You need support when you have to say no to your child or when your child breaks promises made to you, and parents who have faced similar situations will give you comfort and good advice.

Set a deadline for your child to move out. Be realistic about the steps he needs to take, which may include finding a job, seeking help for his addiction, and finding a place to live. Also, be realistic about the time these steps will take. But set a deadline and don't change it.

Help your child meet the deadlines you have set. Work through the steps toward moving out with him. Make sure he takes steps toward moving out on a daily basis.

Don't give your child spending money, which he will likely use to feed his addiction. You may choose to advance your child money to help pay rent, insurance, utilities or other expenses, but make those payments to the vendors directly rather than giving money to your child. Make sure the rules are very clear about what you will and won't pay for. Set up a repayment plan for your child to undertake once he is working and making money; you may choose to forgive all or part of the debt later.

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