First, a few more vital details to help all of you understand how I will base my final decisions on my son:
The amount owed to my son's apartment management is $4,000. Yes, that's right! $2K is back rent, with HUGE fines added to it. My son paid his share of the rent, and I know this-- because I was the one who bought the money when my son would give me the cash. The remaining $2K is the penalty for breaking his lease. B's ex-roommate is legally responsible, too. But, it will be a matter of tracking him down and if my son will actually go through the process of suing him. My son can look forward to having 25% of his wages garnished. Tom suggested what I already had-- and that's what my son went in to do, yesterday. He went in to ask if he could make payments on the back rent. The answer was "no". This complex is corporate business.
The free advice that my son was given, by his family attorney, was good-- the attorney said "the next time you rent a place, don't sign a lease unless you can afford to pay all of the rent yourself". Amen. My son, hopefully, will take this valuable advice to heart. Actually, his credit is ruined for many years, so he won't be able to rent from a place like that for a very long time.
My son's car-- my son could sell the car for $3500.00, easily. I am picking B up in 45 minutes to take the car into the repair shop, again. From what the mechanic says, it's the oil cooler. He's a family friend and he is trustworthy. If it's less than $200.00 to fix, then his dad is going to pay it. We'll slap a FOR SALE sign on it, and B will pay his dad back, from the money he gets for it. If the car costs more than that to fix, then it's time to junk it. It's ironic that his father is such an expert with cars-- he restores CanAm race cars and knows a lot about mechanics. Why his dad picked this particular model of car, puzzles me. I hoped my son would, instead, by an inexpensive and dependable car like a Toyota. I think B is over wanting a sporty looking car, now. This one has been a real pain.
Now then-- C and I talked about my son coming back to our home. Actually, C started the conversation, and I listened. C is afraid that B will get too comfortable, here, and overstay his welcome. He wants him to be here for a "couple of weeks". I listened, though my son needs more than 2 weeks to get back on his feet.
I read many of your comments to my husband. He listened. Two phrases, that really stood out (thank you Ron and Lisa) is that we need to decide if we are giving B a hand OUT or a hand UP. My son is also in his RECOVERY stage, and not ADDICTION. I reminded my husband that B it is apparent that he is no longer using drugs. If he was, he would NOT have paid any rent, and been evicted long ago. Plus, C has bought his own groceries and paid friends gas money to get him to work. The methadone is working for him, Amen.
Plus, I give kudos for my son for putting up with an abusive and unethical boss. B goes to work, on time, rain or shine. He works hard.
My husband has very valid concerns, and the three of us need to sit and talk about it, today. Some of C's concerns, as I understand them are:
- Manipulative behavior - mainly over money.
- Manipulating his mom into doing this for him.
- Laziness - my husband is a hard worker.
- Lies - obviously, this comes easily for drug addicts.
C has agreed that my son needs help. It looks like we are going to allow B to come home, but we need to come to some very specific guidelines. I'm the kind of person who writes things down, and my son will read it and sign it.
The reason I WILL charge my son rent is this-- he needs to have "ownership" of the cost of living. HOWEVER, 3/4 of the rent will go into a savings account. That money will be paid towards the next room he rents. 1/4 of it, will (barely) cover the cost of his living here. B will have to buy some of his own groceries-- like his sodas that he is addicted to and he drinks enough milk to support a dairy farm.
He will now be able to pay for his car insurance and gas, with what he makes.
He will pay a certain amount of his paycheck back to reduce his debt. I will make sure that happens, because he will give the money to me.
I will also tell him that since we are helping him get back on his feet, that I don't want to see a new X-Box or new "toys" with the money he is saving, by living with us. Yes, he should be able to go to a movie, or buy a new pair of shoes etc. Everyone should have a reward for their hard work and honest money. I told my son that I would resent it if my son lived off us to indulge in "things". He needs to save money and become debt-free.
There will be a cap on how long he can stay with us, though. Of course, if we find any signs of drug use, he leaves immediately.
B says he is 110% willing to comply. Of course, C is wary that my son will do that.
I understand. There is always a "honeymoon" period, when a kid returns home. Let's hope that my son has really changed enough to learn the value of integrity.
I feel bad, though, that I heard my husband get up at 4:30am. He got dressed and went into the living room to watch TV. I knew he was worried/upset about my son coming back. God help us!
I'd better get ready to pick him up. I value your feedback, advice, support and comments. Thank you.