We are starting to have many marital strains...
I am a stepparent of an 18 year old teen who is in his senior year of high school. He normally stays with us every Thursday overnight and every other weekend. Over the past year he has been stopped by the police and caught with marijuana in his possession. He now sees a probation officer once a month with random drug testing. He is on a probationary period for one year to try and expunge his record. Since his turning 18 in January our household is in constant upheaval every time he is here. We also have two daughters, 14 and 12, observing all of this.
He is rebellious, only wants to be with his friends, is always late when we try and set boundaries, does not participate willingly in family events, etc. He has been given much leeway in going out when he wants to with a generous curfew of 1:00 a.m. Most often he is gone from our house and really we don't actually know his friends or where he really is. I don't even know his friends last names or where they are really from.
He has had no boundaries set at his mother's house. Last night at 12:00 pm, I received a telephone call from a person I did not know telling me he would not be able to drive home because he was too inebriated. Currently he and his sister are staying with us for 6 days as his mother is in Mexico. I looked up the address the unknown person had given me in error and my husband drove there at 2:00 a.m. He was not there, nor his car. We did not hear anything else the rest of the night.
This morning my husband found him over his mother's house. We are starting to have many marital strains over this young man, we do not know what our rights are as he is 18. I am hating the exposure he is having on the other two children. I am sorry for rambling, I am just so scared, mad and lost. We are educated people and I feel I personally have tried very hard with this young man. I probably am inflexible at times with my standards and the need to set boundaries and respect lines. I do not know what to do or where to turn.
Please help me.
Posted by Mark Hutten, M.A.