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22 year old behaving like a 2 year old

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  • 21-06-2015 10:27pm
    #1
    Registered Users Posts: 146 ✭✭


    Please help, my 22 yr old daughter is living at home and doing a fas course after getting her degree in college at 20, traveling a bit and not sure where to go from here! however, the problem is, and its a big one, she treats the home like a hotel, the biggest problem is her bedroom, she keeps her door locked, but i have a second key, she wont bring down her clothes for the was so i refuse to wash for her when she does - its a weeks worth, at least, at a time, her bedroom is like a sceen from "hoarding buried alive" there is rubbish everywhere, about 8" deep!!!!!!! I keep my house clean and tidy and this is doing my head in, we have asked her repeatedly for the past 2 weeks to clean it and no success - please help I am at my wits end and my health is suffering, I am suffering from anxiety on top of having a serious chronic illness, she does nothing to help in the house and makes no financial contribution!!!!


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Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,467 ✭✭✭deadybai


    My older sister was in a similar situation with my parents around this time last year. Shes very odd and would barley speak to the family while sitting on the laptop in her room all day only coming down for dinner. She however dropped out of college in 2nd year and was kinda lost ever since. She actually did a fas course as well.

    What my parents did was encourage her to move out after the fas course was over. I would try to encourage her to get look for a job when shes finished her course and explain to her that your better off moving out if you want to progress in your life. Start doing it now to get her thinking about her options. At 22 your not really going to change her behaviors with regard to treating the house like a hotel.. If her room is filthy I would just say gently 'Would you not just pick up some of the rubbish? Its starting to smell the house out.'
    My mother wouldnt wash her clothes either and if she brings them down for you to wash. I would pick them back up and throw them into her room.
    Im guessing that she treated her house in college the same way. Just explain that your not in college anymore and you need to start growing up.
    All in all you really need her to get out of the house as much as possible and permanently. My sis eventually moved to Barcelona to get a job.


  • Registered Users Posts: 146 ✭✭karen89


    Hi, she lived at home when she was in college and it was never as bad as this! she has her degree but decided not to do the HDip, it is just getting worse and she is doing my head in, the polite approch to asking her to clean her room is not working, been asking nicely for 3 weeks! 3 weeks ago i went into the room and removed the dirty dishes and she went spare! now there are more dishes and much more rubbish!!!! we had a huge row a couple of weeks ago and still nothing!!!


  • Registered Users Posts: 6,044 ✭✭✭OU812


    There's a couple of things going on here which you need to address. Before I start, I don't even have teenagers yet, but this is personal experience, this is also going to come across as mean spirited & insulting, I don't mean it to be either.

    At 22, if still living at home, she should be doing her own laundry as well as cleaning up & making a financial contribution to the household. You need to instigate a "No Money, No Facilities" policy. Don't buy food for her, don't do her laundry & start presenting her weekly with an "invoice" for power & heat (food to be added).

    You're facilitating her behaviour. She on the other hand is taking the piss. You're her parent(s) & will always love & care for her, she's your daughter & will take as much as you give her. Cop on to yourselves & get tough. Give her an ultimatum that she has until (for example) October (three months), to either buck up & start being an active part of the family or else she needs to find somewhere else to live. You're not being mean to her or not loving her by doing this. You're teaching her the skills she's going to need to get on with life.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,467 ✭✭✭deadybai


    karen89 wrote: »
    Hi, she lived at home when she was in college and it was never as bad as this! she has her degree but decided not to do the HDip, it is just getting worse and she is doing my head in, the polite approch to asking her to clean her room is not working, been asking nicely for 3 weeks! 3 weeks ago i went into the room and removed the dirty dishes and she went spare! now there are more dishes and much more rubbish!!!! we had a huge row a couple of weeks ago and still nothing!!!

    Thats nearly identical to my mother and sisters situation. My sister was always difficult to handle and my mother and her didnt get on very well all their lifes. My mother just gave up trying and I think that was the best remedy. Dont bother any more. You just have to accept it and stop caring. Arguing isnt going to make thinks better.Really dont get involved with anything that will start a row. Just encouragement on what to do after the fas course. Leave her do her own thing. It worked for my mother anyways.


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,610 ✭✭✭shocksy


    As the poster OU812 has stated, you need to get tough, it's your house, so your rules, she either abides by them or she finds somewhere else to live.

    You have every right to go in and get dishes etc, if she doesn't like it TOUGH, let her do it herself daily.

    I would do exactly as the poster OU812 said, start by telling her that she has to contribute weekly to the household, if she doesn't don't do anything for her, she will soon cop on and if not tell her to go. She won't find it so easy away from home. I'd go as far as taking the bedroom key away from her until things improve.

    Be tough and in control.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 2,610 ✭✭✭shocksy


    deadybai wrote: »
    Thats nearly identical to my mother and sisters situation. My sister was always difficult to handle and my mother and her didnt get on very well all their lifes. My mother just gave up trying and I think that was the best remedy. Dont bother any more. You just have to accept it and stop caring. Arguing isnt going to make thinks better.Really dont get involved with anything that will start a row. Just encouragement on what to do after the fas course. Leave her do her own thing. It worked for my mother anyways.

    That is terrible advice, this is the mothers house and she is entitled to have rules, by letting the daughter have her own way means she thinks she can do anything she wants which she can't as it isn't her house.


  • Registered Users Posts: 29,071 ✭✭✭✭Wanderer78


    this is a tough one but op its your home so its your rules. you and your home deserve respect. im a little worried about your daughter's mental well being though. do you think shes suffering from some form of depression? it seems like shes not really looking after herself too well. this maybe manifesting itself in her behaviour. its unhealthy for her and all living in the home to be honest


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,029 ✭✭✭Rhys Essien


    You say she had a stack of dinner plates in her room.Put an end to that.Tell he eat at the table or else get her own food.


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,029 ✭✭✭Rhys Essien


    Another thing,is she getting any social welfare payment?.If not why not?


  • Registered Users Posts: 146 ✭✭karen89


    Hi, yep tried the thing about eating at the table, lasted 3 days! she has a lot of friends from different areas of her life, school, college, guides, drama and lots of stuff, would meet them in the evening for coffee, no drugs or drink, well, she would have a drink if she went out at the weekend - not too often, has a wide circle of friends and i dont think any of them would get away with what she does!! she is getting a payment from welfare for the past few weeks, since she started the course but isnt out enough to spend it, and no signs of it being spent, she was never into clothes or make-up ?? odd to me but thats always how she was even as a small kid, she would rather spend her money on a book than clothes! she just came in a few mins ago from the cinema and hubby told her to "shape up or ship out" he handed her a bin bag and told her to tidy her room, she stormed up to her room and there is movement so I am not sure what is happening!


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  • Registered Users Posts: 3,029 ✭✭✭Rhys Essien


    karen89 wrote: »
    Hi, yep tried the thing about eating at the table, lasted 3 days! she has a lot of friends from different areas of her life, school, college, guides, drama and lots of stuff, would meet them in the evening for coffee, no drugs or drink, well, she would have a drink if she went out at the weekend - not too often, has a wide circle of friends and i dont think any of them would get away with what she does!! she is getting a payment from welfare for the past few weeks, since she started the course but isnt out enough to spend it, and no signs of it being spent, she was never into clothes or make-up ?? odd to me but thats always how she was even as a small kid, she would rather spend her money on a book than clothes! she just came in a few mins ago from the cinema and hubby told her to "shape up or ship out" he handed her a bin bag and told her to tidy her room, she stormed up to her room and there is movement so I am not sure what is happening!

    Why are'nt you asking her to contribute towards her keep?.


  • Registered Users Posts: 146 ✭✭karen89


    to be honest I dont know, we never did, well, thats not totally true, she had a job for a few weeks, about 6, around Christmas, and when we said it to her she shrugged it off and we didnt push it, yeh I know, push overs, but what can you do??? throw her out? mind you its getting to that .... we should have insisted from day one but we didnt and now look where we are


  • Registered Users Posts: 7,518 ✭✭✭matrim


    Why is this in teens and pre-teens? Your daughter is 22 and an adult. Treat her liked one and tell her to cop on or move out.


  • Registered Users Posts: 146 ✭✭karen89


    Hi, matrim, I hope all stays well for you in your little bubble, but teens turn into 20's and I am going my best and finding it tough and need help - feel free not to follow
    matrim wrote: »
    Why is this in teens and pre-teens? Your daughter is 22 and an adult. Treat her liked one and tell her to cop on or move out.


  • Registered Users Posts: 146 ✭✭karen89


    Hi, matrim, I hope all stays well for you in your little bubble, but teens turn into 20's and I am going my best and finding it tough and need help - feel free not to follow
    matrim wrote: »
    Why is this in teens and pre-teens? Your daughter is 22 and an adult. Treat her liked one and tell her to cop on or move out.


  • Registered Users Posts: 146 ✭✭karen89


    Hi, matrim, I hope all stays well for you in your little bubble, but teens turn into 20's and I am going my best and finding it tough and need help - feel free not to follow
    matrim wrote: »
    Why is this in teens and pre-teens? Your daughter is 22 and an adult. Treat her liked one and tell her to cop on or move out.


  • Registered Users Posts: 146 ✭✭karen89


    Hi, matrim, I hope all stays well for you in your little bubble, but teens turn into 20's and I am going my best and finding it tough and need help - feel free not to follow
    matrim wrote: »
    Why is this in teens and pre-teens? Your daughter is 22 and an adult. Treat her liked one and tell her to cop on or move out.


  • Registered Users Posts: 146 ✭✭karen89


    Hi, matrim, I hope all stays well for you in your little bubble, but teens turn into 20's and I am going my best and finding it tough and need help - feel free not to follow
    matrim wrote: »
    Why is this in teens and pre-teens? Your daughter is 22 and an adult. Treat her liked one and tell her to cop on or move out.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 7,108 ✭✭✭Jellybaby1


    I just saw this and was prompted to reply even though I have little advice to offer you. I have sort of the same situation but it is my son. Its worse because he is several years older than your daughter and it has been going on since he was fifteen. He rejected our kind of life, education, career, prospects, planning/saving for the future. His teenage years were sheer hell for me and its not over yet. He dropped out of secondary school, had a few jobs, went travelling using his own money to keep him, arrived back in time for the recession, he was broke and unemployed then for several years, then did a Fas course and drifted from one job scheme to another until at long last he got a full time but low-paid job but at least he is working now which is a relief. But this living and eating in the bedroom, and its a tip is extremely difficult for me to live with. No-one is allowed to enter the room or move even a scrap of paper or there would be a horrendous row. He doesn't speak to us and prefer to be left alone. He spends his time with TV, computer games and football. Thankfully he does his own laundry and doesn't eat that much of our food. Its embarrassing and I avoid having anyone to visit because of it, and would be unable to have anyone to stay either. I have gone through all the 'throwing him out', 'giving ultimatums', even sitting down and discussing it where everyone ends up either in tears or another row, all to no avail. He did attend a few counselling sessions but honestly I felt he was much worse after it. He is in a relationship now and I am hoping it will be good for him and help him to improve, however, having tried everything, I feel totally powerless. Telling a son or daughter to move out is impossible when they don't have any money. You have to be renting for six months before you will be considered for rent allowance, so that means parents have to fork out rent for a flat for a child who can't pay it themselves, which for me is out of the question.

    The only thing I can suggest is that your husband and you request she sit down with you for a discussion about the situation, ask her what exactly is bothering her. You must tell her you love her but her behaviour is making life impossible for you and she and you both deserve better. Maybe it might work for you. The response all depends on the person themselves. Maybe deep down she wants help but is stubbornly refusing to be the first to face up to the problem. It could be depression which needs delicate handling. If alcohol is involved it just creates worse depression. Sadly, nothing has worked for me but I have read about stories of success. Good luck.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,232 ✭✭✭alroley


    I'm 23 and moved back home a few months ago. I was a bit like your daughter as a teenager, but I grew out of that crap a few years ago. I guess I'm in a similar situation as your daughter - have my degree, living at home, doing a jobbridge internship(150 a week from social welfare), but I do housework at home and give financial help(not a lot, but still). Your daughter is lucky to be able to live at home rent free and having her means cooked for her etc. The LEAST she can do is bring dishes down from her room(actually she should be eating dinner at the table with her family?) and bring her dirty clothes down. You need to be stricter and enforce rules if she wants to keep living at home.
    She is 22 and an adult. Don't be treating her like a spoilt little baby. She knows she can walk all over you. You need to change that.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 1,815 ✭✭✭imitation


    I think you are on the right path, you have to show her that, while you do care and will look after her, at the same time she is in good health (more on this in a second) and has to learn how to contribute her own share, because one day she will have to stand on her own two feet. It might also be worth talking to a GP if you think she is depressed, it can happen easily as its a tough time in a persons life when they are trying to find there own way in life, and its easier than ever to into your own shell these days with the internet.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 7,108 ✭✭✭Jellybaby1


    matrim wrote: »
    Why is this in teens and pre-teens? Your daughter is 22 and an adult. Treat her liked one and tell her to cop on or move out.

    Having adult children at home later in life is a new phenomenon these days since the recession. The recession has added to the problem of depression. The OP came here for help and advice. Boards unfortunately do not have a forum to cover it. This was the next best thing.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,609 ✭✭✭irishgirl19


    I'm 23 now. Living on my own the last few years though.
    I would've been like your daughter in the sense my room was like a bomb hit it and I was lazy with my washing. After a while my mam and dad came in and woke me up at 8 in the morning every weekday to get out of the house and find a job or something because I wasn't doing sweet f all everyday while living under their roof.
    I can tell you something, it worked.
    I was still handing up my keep while getting social welfare though.
    If she moved out she would probably be in for a reality check when she has to pay for everything for herself


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 7,108 ✭✭✭Jellybaby1


    .....If she moved out she would probably be in for a reality check when she has to pay for everything for herself

    This has been suggested earlier. Can you suggest how she can pay rent while on a FAS course?


  • Registered Users Posts: 291 ✭✭cork2


    I can give an opinion from the other side. I was the lazy teen. I started fulltime employment at 16. During the first two years of my apprenticeship my parents told me they didn't want me to contribute financially at home due to apprentice rates being small. Once I hit third year I contributed against my will. I lived in my own little bubble Didn't actually understand at all, I thought my parents were loaded. I just lay on the couch, didn't cook, didn't clean just watched tv and went to the pub. I'm now 25 and back living at home. I moved out at 21 and it was the kick in the arse I needed!! I'm back at home now to save money, I work fulltime and unusual hours, I contribute 100 euro a week, do all my own cooking, all my own washing, a share of the housework and whatever else needs to be done. Encourage her to move out if she can afford a house share it will change her outlook in life and make her a more mature person. It was the best thing I ever did!!


  • Registered Users Posts: 4 fValerie


    Do you give her money? Do you buy her clothes and stuff? Maybe that's why she doesn't strive to find a job.
    As for the fact that she locks her room - well, I did so too when I was a teen. It is normal to have a private space and have things there the way you want.
    She will learn to keep her room in order as she gets older, and her friends will help her to. If she invites them over - she won't want them to see her room messy.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 12,449 ✭✭✭✭pwurple


    Jellybaby1 wrote: »
    This has been suggested earlier. Can you suggest how she can pay rent while on a FAS course?

    I moved out when I was 18 and in college. Shared a house with friends and paid my rent with money from my part time jobs. That's JOBS, plural. Night job and weekend job. What this woman is doing living in her mammies house at twenty-flippen-two is beyond me.

    What's the FAS course even in? How to pick one's nose? If her education so far has not given her a profession, she's not going to get one from a FAS course. She needs to get her arse down to the local shops or factory, start working from the bottom up, and earning her way.

    I'd read her the riot act, I really would. The room being in a mess is so minor it doesn't even need mentioning. Who gives a toss about tidyness when this 22 year old is flushing her life and potential down the toilet.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,396 ✭✭✭DivingDuck


    karen89 wrote: »
    she keeps her door locked, but i have a second key
    karen89 wrote: »
    she was never into clothes or make-up ?? odd to me but thats always how she was even as a small kid, she would rather spend her money on a book than clothes!

    I'm going to differ a little in my opinions from the others that are being offered here, because there are a few things about your posts which I feel haven't really been addressed, and they relate to what I feel you yourself could be doing better.

    Your daughter's behaviour is objectionable and unacceptable in many ways. Keeping her room in a state out of character with the rest of the house is unfair to the other occupants, and refusing to contribute to the house (at least in terms of help and effort if not financially) is another. This is definitely bad behaviour on her part.

    However, there is nothing wrong with her wanting to keep her room locked, and in my opinion, you having a key to this lock and using it is a violation of her private space. Also, I find the fact that you refer to her preferences (having more interest in books than clothes/make-up) as "odd" a bit unsettling, and I think might be illustrative of a greater problem which is contributing to your daughter's unacceptable behaviour.

    Maybe she doesn't feel like understood, or a proper part of the family, which is why she eats alone and doesn't feel the need to contribute? This is not an excuse for her behaviour-- but it might explain it, which would lead to finding a way to correct and improve it.

    Basically, it sounds like the two of you don't understand one another very well, and may have very poor communication as a result. To make matters worse, she is behaving in a childish manner, and so you are treating her like a child. Both the childish treatment and the poor communication don't seem to be helping the situation, so perhaps it's time to try something different.

    My suggestion is this: spend some time alone with your daughter, and talk. Acknowledge that she is an adult now, and tell her that from here on you will respect her privacy. Ask her why she is bringing food to her room instead of eating with the family. Ask her if there are things that could be done to make her feel more comfortable living at home. (By which I mean in terms of atmosphere, not "do all my laundry on command at a time of my choosing".) Ask her if she is feeling comfortable with her life trajectory, and if not, if there's anything you can do to help her adjust it. As another poster has already suggested, if she says or implies she's very unhappy, discuss the possibility of depression, and the potential of assistance from a GP.

    Then tell her that while you are happy to support her as much as possible, as an adult, her behaviour isn't acceptable. If she is to remain in the house, she can't be separate from it entirely, and needs to fall in line with the "house rules", such as no hoarding plates, no allowing rubbish build-up, no laundry-on-demand, etc. Explain that you feel it's fair that she muck in with washing-up or cooking or vacuuming or whatever tasks you feel would be helpful to you. Adults living together requires fairness, and give and take, and you expect this of her and believe she is more than equal to the task.

    Back this up by saying that you would like to get to understand and know her as an adult, but that part of that requires her to display an understanding of adult responsibilities and duties in turn.

    There is a middle ground between putting up with bad and inconsiderate behaviour and "You're out by Tuesday". Maybe this could be one way to getting there. I wish you and your family the best of luck.


  • Registered Users Posts: 5,641 ✭✭✭Teyla Emmagan


    I would take the lock out of the door so she can't lock the room anymore. She is not a lodger, or living in a houseshare. She is your daughter and that is your home. There shouldn't be any room in your own house you can't go in to! And that might make her understand she is still part of the family, not living independently. She doesn't seem to appreciate how lucky she is unfortunately.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 1,162 ✭✭✭Wyldwood


    Karen89 & Jellybaby, my heart goes out to you both. I've was where you are now with my son during his late teens but thankfully all is resolved for many a year now and he is now an extremely pleasant, helpful adult.

    Karen89, does your daughter have siblings? If so, how does she interact with them? Your daughter sounds like she has no self respect/esteem if she is prepared to live like this in her 20s. I think her apparent arrogant behaviour at home is covering other issues. You think there is no drink/drug problem, which is good, but there are definitely other problems bothering her. You MUST keep the line of communication open between you and your daughter. I know it's very, very difficult when you keep hitting that blank wall that ends in tears and arguments.

    I feel you are passed the point where simply trying to reason with her is going to help and I urge you to speak to your GP, both for your own sake and your daughter's. There is a good possibility that there are some mental health issues at play here, given her current unwillingness to be part of the family, and the sooner these are addressed the better.

    I wish you the very best of luck and sincerely hope you have a quick resolution.


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