Our expert says:
Dear Carol, Hello again.
Your frustration is entirely understandable, and you've had really bad luck with the way your two boys have chosen to approach life. As you're realizing, a priority has to be leading your OWN life and enjoying it. It's fine to be helpful to the boys to a point, but especally at their ages, they must take responsibility for their own choices.
If G makes unnecessary trips and runs out of petrol --- leave it to him to sort out that problem. If he needs to borrow money to get emergency petrol to bring the bike home, then subtract that from his next petrol money. He should not be allowed to use your computer at all, until he has bothered to learn how to do so without messing it up.
Make it a condition if he wants to sit in the sittingroom or elsewhere with you adults, or even to share a meal, that he must be clean and sweet-smelling. The point is that he is free to choose not to bath --- but not to fail to wash and then to expect others to put up with his smelliness. He must understand that all choices have consequences, and if you don't like the consequences, try making another choice.
You can make it clear that you love him, even if you understandably and naturally, don't love some of the things he does. Being "a teenager" is no excuse for what he's ben doing. But if he finds the consequences of not helping himself unpleasant enough, he'll help himself. So long as he can assume that you'll always step in and rescue him from the meses he's making, why bother to help himself ?
You've handled a long and really difficult series of problems in life with courage and fortitude. let him find his way of doing likewise.
The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal
advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.