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Should I be worried? - Carers UK Forum

Should I be worried?

Tell us a bit about yourself here.
Ok here’s the thing.
I love my son. He is the best thing in the world to me. He suffers from depression and has tried to commit suicide on more than one occasion. After a litany of ‘situations,’ in his life. We finally got a phone call from him to say he had lost his job and had to move out of where he was living.
We as parents were delighted as we wanted him to leave that place anyway it was making him so miserable. I felt certain that if we got him home we could finally be given the opportunity to help him.
He returned. This is when I realised that not only was he not in a ‘good place,’ in his mind. He seems to be blaming me for it all. I am racking my brains to think what I have done to deserve this as he has not lived with us for as he says 14 years. So as you can see he is not a child but a man acting like a child.
Why do I say this. Because when he is with his father he is the happy go lucky Son we brought up. When he is with me alone. He is a nightmare beligerant man who is mean. Example yesterday he awoke came downstairs and said that he wanted his trousers mended. I said I would get around to it today. He said “I been waiting a week!” I said leave it where it is and I will do it.
I spoke to him and said that the tone he was using with me was not acceptable as I know he does not mean it but it comes across as he considers me subservient to him. That’s how he makes me feel. This lead to a tirade from him and he stormed out of the house.
I sent him a text apologising if he felt offended and could I have his trousers as I had retrieved the sewing box to mend them.
In the evening he returned and said he had ‘chucked them out.’ Then he deliberately did not eat any of the dinner I cooked and stayed in his room for the night.
I again apologised if I did something wrong. This morning I got up (usually I get up at 4 am), as hubby starts work early. Our Son was already up and accused me of checking up on him. I explained it is my usual time to get up. Later in the morning. I placed the washing in the machine. Set it to 50 mins.
My son came downstairs he specifically asked me how much longer the machine would take. I said about another 45 mins. He explained he wanted to use the machine before he went to University and I should tell him when its available.
I walked into the kitchen when he left he had deliberately turned the dial around on the machine so it would wash for over 3 hrs! I had to stop the machine and turn off the programme. Take sodding wet cloths out of it and then told him the machine was ready. He came down and saw that it had stopped. I actually heard him says that he underestimated me!
He then Washed out the machine (running it on empty). Before putting a load in. I know he did it on purpose.
This is what he does and when I finally rise to the bait. I am made to feel like it’s the world worst thing I could do as he then stays in his room and does not emerge except to go to university. Its like he’s deliberately making himself feel isolated. And all I asked him to do was to respect me a little more in his speech.
This spitefulness does not occur when his father is at home only when we are alone. The other day we had some problems and I (because I sleep with a machine), made an oxygen tent and fell alsleep exhausted. During the night someone ripped the tent and I actually heard him say. If I carn’t get a good nights sleep why should she! And I am his mother!
Am I being unreasonable. I am trying to understand honest I am. When we got him home we paid for the removal we travelled 180 miles to get him home. We told him that if he goes to university we would help and that he did not have to worry about bills etc. We are not rich but we are keeping up our end. He even got us buying his cloths and new furniture for his room. And then he goes to his relatives and then blames us for being what they term as the poor relations. He acts as if he hates us for it.
I know it’s his depression. But I am getting not only stick from him but from his dad too as he says I am expecting too much from him. And that if anything goes wrong it must be my fault. His father will agree with anything he says because he is so scared it will make him go off. I am scared too but if he wants to cope with life the last thing I am going to be is dishonest with him. He needs to consider other people’s feelings when he does things. And that compromising and help comes from those who work together as a team to achieve the goal. Not this is what I do and I don’t care about anyone else. I never gave him that philosophy when he was at home. This is what has developed in the last 14 years away from home. But I am trying to understand. It’s just when he’s mean like that even I am getting worried with how far would he take it just to get his own back for something I may have said or did that he would take offence to.
Should I be worried?
Welcome to the forum. What a dreadful situation. Ultimately, I believe we are all responsible for our own happiness, as adults. It sounds like him moving in with you is a disaster, honestly, I think he needs to move out, grown up and start behaving as an adult. Time to lay down some ground rules. It's absolutely vital that you and your husband agree on an approach. Have you thought about having counselling together aimed at how to deal with this situation? I don't have any experience of mental health issues, but I do have two sons. It is YOUR house and if he wants to live there he should respect you.
Hi mick and welcome to the Forum.

Your post reminds me alot of when my grown up children came back home.
One of our children, now in her thirties, suffers from mental health problems and she always blamed me more often than her dad. He did alot more for her when she demanded. The best thing for us was when she left home again, even though she lives near by, she still phones and makes demands at times, but it's easier to stepback.
Also, when one of my son's returned from university, and was looking for a job, although he was not demanding in anyway and would cook his own meals, he would stay in his room alot. We soon adjusted to that as he was used to his own personal space.
It was a very big adjustment to having him live back home and he found that as well. (He now lives happily with his partner and their children)
it worked better if I did my own thing but we too needed ground rules.

I agree with bowlingbun that counselling will help. I too found that helped me.
Welcome to the forum this must be an awful situation to be constantly living in and yes do believe that your husband has to work together with you and counselling might just be the answer to getting that goal I do not have experience of MH issues with the young however do have a 27 year old son still living at home and stand by bb on this one if he wants to stay in the family home he must have ground rules and stick by them plus respecting you in the meantime hope things get sorted and Take Care xx
No, you're not being unreasonable. Stop apologising to him, it only feeds his unjustified sense of ill-usage!

You say his behaviour is because of his depression, but I'm not sure that's a valid justification! The interaction between mental illness and 'morality' (ie, how we treat other people) is a tricky one, but in the end, he DOES have to behave decently towards other people (you included) if he himself wants any consideration or decency in the way he's treated.

Is he in treatment for his depression? I would, personally, say that is the 'condition' which has to be met if you are continue to be 'on terms' with him at all (let alone him living in your house, and you subbing him financially!).

It's the most important of the ground rules which, I agree, have to be laid down.

When you lay them down, expect a HUGE 'kick-back'! People fight FURIOUSLY to 'get back to their comfort level' (which is him feeling sorry for himself, and blaming you for his woes!), and he will resist change, blame it on you even more than whatever it is he's blaming you for, etc etc.

Does your husband truly understand how horrible your son is to you? Can you film your son on your phone when he lays into you verbally etc.

Has your husband ever remonstrated with him 'don't you treat your mother like that! You be civil young man or it's out the door you go!' or whatever.

The threat of sucide is a very, very powerful weapon of 'control' by him. It's the ultimate 'brink-manship'......BUT if you pander to it (as your husband does it seems), then you end up with the monstrous, narcissitic, self-pitying, exploitative egoist that your son seems to be!

What was your son like when he was younger? Was he much nicer as a child (I do hope so!). I'm asking because I think one of the things that counselling for yourself (Which I agree is probably essential for you to get an effective 'handle' on why your son is why he is, and how best to deal with him), may probe is whether he is 'depressed' or whether he has a personality disorder. The former may be 'curable' - the latter not.

It's a horrible situation all round, but I feel you are on the right ground by constantly challenging and 'standing up to him' - which is what he seems to object to! But it's no way to live your life, and this really can't go on, can it?
Hello Mick
I cannot see in your post what you have to apologise for? I agree it's fueling your son to be mean and disrespectful. Obviously he has issues. These issues are not your fault. Be firmer, hard as you will find it. I'm sure it will pay off. You are entitled to your life without walking on eggshells constantly.
Take care.
:geek: He is probably exhibiting good behavior in university. If that wasn't the case he would have been kicked out..... Surely he should continue the same amicable behavior at home but obviously not. Sorry to say but this answer may come across heartless but what your son is doing weather he knows it or not... Is taking out his frustrations on you and using any excuse to use you as an emotional punching bag. Take control and apply Tough Love. Help him get a room of his own near UNI and stress he has to take responsibility of his own life and grow up. Don't back down or you will get worse from him... and yes you should be worried as his behavior is eratic and unpredictable. He will manipulate you to give him another chance.. Remember you already have. So stick to your intentions .. Over time someone will pick up on his behavior and give him the help he needs in UNI. In the mean time your relationship with him will heal. But be aware that you cannot fix this living under the same roof. You must put him out. I dread the consequences..... Good luck.
oh dear, I have to agree with other posts - you are doing nothing to apologise for, it is your son who needs to be doing that.

I am watching a very similar situation first hand with my son-in-law, he uses his depression to behave just as he pleases and is unpleasant to everyone around him. He wont speak to me as I seem to be one of the only people who will not do as he bids, and of course I hate the way he treats my daughter not to mention his own parents who pander to his needs and support him financially. Recently he decided he wanted a new car, so had a full tantrum when his parents refused, shaved his head and threatened suicide (again) he got his car. He is nearly 40 and a new father.

Not saying this is the same thing, but I watch my daughter go through days like yours every day.