When your 30-year-old son won't move out

Filed under: Sex

Normally I don't read advice columns, because the "advice" is usually so general, and so obvious, that I highly doubt it's at all helpful for the poor, beleaguered person who's struggling with a real-life problem that has no easy answers. However, I'm occasionally drawn into Cary Tennis' column on Salon, because -- agree with him or not -- he'll give you a suggestion that you can run with.

I was especially intrigued by a recent column, in which some poor mother was living with her 30-year-old son, and can't get him to leave the house. Apparently she's living in a completely serious version of the movie Failure to Launch -- and, even though she loves her son, feels trapped because he a) can't seem to move out, and b) won't pay any of the living expenses. According to mom, "It's as if he still sees himself as a teenager with an allowance."

So what's a mother to do?

Cary writes a very thoughtful and detailed response that says, essentially: write a letter, tell him you love him, and kick him out.

It seems harsh, but I can't think of another solution, can you? After all, shouldn't this guy want to get out the house? It's only been 6 year since I moved out, and -- as much as I love my folks -- I can't imagine living under the same roof again.

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AdviceMama Says:
Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.