- The Washington Times - Sunday, June 28, 2009

Dear Ms. Vicki,

I know this is my fault, but my husband and I allowed my son, who was 28 at the time, to move in with us after his divorce. This was to help him save money, get back on his feet and complete his master’s degree. Well, it’s been three years, and he still lives in our basement.

He completed graduate school two years ago and has no steady job. He was behind on his child support payments, so we pay for him. When his three children visit him, we do the cooking, cleaning, take the children shopping and assume the responsibility for them. He is now dating, and wants his girlfriends to spend the night with him in our home. He says he can’t afford a hotel and doesn’t want to stay at their homes because it’s not comfortable for him.

Can you believe him? I won’t belabor the point, but as you can guess, my son does not pay any bills, doesn’t buy food and does not clean. I am the one who cleans his area for him.

Do you think my son needs counseling? Is he depressed or something? Why can’t he get moving, get his own place and take care of himself? — Tired of my 31-year-old

Dear Tired,

Your son doesn’t need counseling, and he is not depressed. He is spoiled rotten and quite satisfied. More importantly, I can’t blame him. If I had someone to cook, clean, pay my bills, and assume responsibility for me and my family, I wouldn’t leave either. I would stay as long as the offer was extended.

Mother, you need to rescind the offer and give your son an eviction notice. I’m appalled that he also refuses to stay at his girlfriends’ houses because he’s “not comfortable” — that takes some nerve.

This is a situation you and your husband created — your offer was open-ended or at least it has become open-ended. Bottom line: Give him a 30-day notice. That’s final.

Dear Ms. Vicki,

I read your column every week and I have friends from other states who read it, too. I don’t mean to be too nosy, but are you married to a soldier who is deployed? I say no, because you seem to be handling everything too well. Please answer if you don’t mind.

My other reason for writing is to say that I was very pessimistic about deployment. My husband was on his second deployment when I started reading your column. You were always very positive and seemed to give good, solid advice. I was miserable and unhappy. I’m sure I was depressed at some point. My true friends and family live far away.

Well, I followed your advice and decided to make the deployment a challenge for myself, and I made it through. My husband has been home for six weeks now. I did it. I managed to take some college classes, worked part time and even though I did not lose weight, I did not gain weight either. Yippee!

I just want to tell all of the other spouses to hang in there. Their wives and husbands will be home soon, too. Thank you for sincerely caring.Made it through

Dear Made it,

Congratulations! I’m ecstatic that you see yourself as victorious and have a sense of success as a result of your husband’s deployment.

Yes, I’m married to a soldier — my husband is active-duty Army — and have dealt with real issues from A to Z throughout his deployments. The deployments were not easy for me and my boys and I’m sure there were days when I was depressed. Many nights my faith was paper thin. It took a concerted effort from my family and friends to keep me going.

However, I awakened every morning to a new day with new beginnings, which made me grateful. Through it all, I am still here — amazing.

Again, keep your head up and hang in there. Thanks for writing.

Vicki Johnson is a licensed clinical social worker, military spouse and mother of three. Her column runs in The Washington Times on Thursdays and Sundays. Contact her at [email protected]

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