Is it wrong to throw an adult child out knowing he'll be homeless?



Is it wrong to throw an adult child out knowing he’ll be homeless?


Hi @Dee-B - Welcome to the Village Community and to the Family Support Study. I’m glad you found this space and I hope you find it helpful.

One thing I’ve learned living with and supporting my husband through active addiction and long-term recovery is that nothing is black and white. It’s tough to say what’s right or wrong in certain situations, because every situation is different for every person. What might be the right move for one person could be the wrong move for someone else.

Are you able to share more about your story to provide more context? This can help others in the Community better offer insights and support for you.

I hope you’re able to check out your @PeerGroup12 Welcome Post (click here to view), which includes a quick tutorial of the site, and please also introduce yourself and share your story by clicking here.


Hi @Dee-B- welcome to @PeerGroup12, and thanks @momentsandlight and @alair for your contribution to Dee-B’s question.

My sense about the “on the streets” issue is that our beloved SUD people use the worst-case-scenario “on the streets” imagery to manipulate us when they are testing our boundaries, and that WE also use the worst-case-scenarios to justify our weak-will to maintain the boundary. Remember, these kiddos are ace at finding sofas, basements, and situations with others where they can crash. Of course, there are situations when someone uses all the matches in their matchbox and there’s no one else to borrow from/impose on etc.

This is an ideal situation if you’re looking from a vulnerability point of view. If you frame the boundary toward guiding toward the good that will be got, you will be in a better place when your son runs out of options- As they say, 3 hots and a cot, is better than cold and wet, you bet. Anyway- you don’t “know” he’ll be homeless, that’s for tomorrow to decide. Don’t fear- keep challenging your own thinking. :beetle:


hi @Alair , I admire and praise you for your courage to activate tough love with your son and your message oozes love and compassion in your decision. I pray that he will continue on his path of success. Before my StepD came to live with us, I drew up a contract with a similar provision that she would have to leave if she started using drugs. Thankfully, she has been clean (at least we hope so, but there is always a smiggen of doubt when she doesn’t come home at night) but we are now learning that bigger issues are her mental diseases. We are completely unqualified to deal with these. We are scheduled to see a counselor in a couple of weeks, in hope that we can learn how to better deal with this. Your message will give me hope that we can come up with wise decisions for her and us. God Bless You!


This depends on so many things. It depends on where your family has traveled on its struggles with addiction. I can only share my story. My son had been in treatment for only a short time, when he persuaded his girlfriend to pick him up. He stayed with her for a few days and then came home. When I realized he had begun using again, I followed through on the boundary I had set- that he could stay home as long as he remained clean and sober. I told him that he had to leave the moment I knew he was using again. It was the hardest, most painful, gut wrenching thing I ever had to do, making him leave. The first time he called that night, he said he had no place to go. I suggested that he would probably be safe sleeping in his car in a Walmart parking lot. The next time he called he asked what he would have to do to come home. I told him that he had left treatment too soon, and he had to go back. He hung up. Finally he pulled in to the driveway. He promised to return to the treatment center in the morning. I took him back to the center, where he reluctantly signed himself back in. It was a rough time the first week or so, but then he settled in. It has been close to 9 months since he was released. He has remained clean and sober. His brain is healing. He is beginning to look ahead, as opposed to getting through this one day at a time. I feel very blessed. And I am still afraid, but less so.
When people who love someone struggling with addiction set boundaries that are acceptable to them, you can be sure those boundaries will be tested. It could be that you find it reasonable to negotiate different boundaries. And that’s OK. But our loved ones need us to be strong enough to hold the line, when they struggle. For you, it might not mean kicking him out.
Maybe you can keep in mind that you are helping as long as you and your loved one are moving forward toward recovery. ( a life long journey, because the struggle never completely goes away).
Best wishes!


Hi @Dee-B - it’s been a few days since you posted this. How are things going? Curious to know what you think of the responses so far, or if you’re able to share a little bit more about your story?

This is a topic that others have brought up in the Village Community in the past. Check out these conversations - you might find some words of hope and wisdom there:

Am I enabling by letting my addicted child live in my home?
How to cope with an addicted child?


So actually I have 2 sons, not sure if I mentioned that in my original post _ one is addicted to heroin, the other to fentanyl. I’m now seeing a counselor on a weekly basis to Help me learn how to set boundaries. it’s a shame it has taken me 32 and 38 years to figure this out. I feel like it’s a little late and I’m really struggling with myself and the decisions that I’ve made. I know the worst thing to do is to blame myself But this is just so hard. I see the manipulation, I see how they play me, they can be fun-loving in the best mood joking around having normal conversations one minute and then the next they’re nodding off, passed out, sneaking around, stressed out because they need a fix… it is such an emotional roller coaster. I don’t wish this on anyone, not even my worst enemy! One positive point that I should make is that this new counselor is helping me with positive thinking and meditation and self-care and boundaries. I am actually seeing some light at the end of this very dark tunnel. I went apartment hunting and I am hopeful I’ll be in a situation to move out of this house and into my own home alone when my lease expires In the spring. And if this isn’t an emotional roller coaster I don’t know what is. I get so happy thinking about my own place and not having to deal with these adults in my home. My mom used to always say “out of sight, out of mind”. She told me many times that when us kids were moved out and on our own, she could sleep much better at night. I get to the point where I feel the same way but then I think about how lonely I’ll be. But another positive point is maybe I’ll finally be able to meet a significant other, get involved in my own relationship, and live happily ever after.:heart:


Hey @Dee-B, thanks for your post! It’s a good plan, if it’s still on!
I know how much I daydreamed about having a place of my own when I was younger with children at home.
Good decision to see a counselor! When my son was in active addiction I didn’t get restorative sleep for years. Every telephone call was terrifying. If it was from his area code, I was sure it was the worst news. It never was. Both of my children were taking a lot of my dream space as they moved into adulthood. They were up and away but still running on the edges of things.

I think it sounds great to get a new place for yourself. It’s exciting to look forward to a new fort!


This is great to hear @Dee-B! Seeing a therapist to get through my own struggles and learn to love myself again was the first step in my own healing process. I’m curious to know what has helped you with setting and sticking to boundaries? That’s a hot topic around these parts and we’d love to hear your perspective!


Hi @Dee-B - checking in with you today! How are things going with you and your sons?

I love this! There’s a recent thread about self care and boundaries that you should definitely check out::