Adult Children And House Rules (Part 4)

It isn’t easy to stand by and watch as someone you love makes choices that you know will have a bad outcome, or which you do not personally agree with. As parents of adult children, you must first and foremost respect their rights as adults.

Whether they live under your roof or not, you have no right to insist upon setting rules which interfere in their right to choose for themselves what to do with their own life. You do have the right to make sure that their choices do not interfere with your home and the rest of the families security, however. For instance, we have an ADT alarm system at our house for our family’s protection, we also have a rule that it must be set by ten each night.

Exceptions

In some cases, there is true and imminent danger involved to the safety and welfare of your adult child, their children, your own underage children, or yourself. In these cases, you have every right and responsibility to act. A few examples would be as follows:

Clear child abuse or neglect as outlined by your state government. Your opinion that something is neglectful or abusive must be substantiated by state law before you have the right to intervene because it may well be just your opinion.

Clear animal abuse or neglect as outlined by your state or local government. Your opinion that something is neglectful or abusive must be substantiated by state or local law before you have the right to intervene because it may well be just your opinion.

Alcohol and Drug abuse. If their life or the life of another is at risk by all means intervene. This is where programs such as Al-Anon can help you understand the dynamics and what you can and should do. You may have to become acquainted with the principles of tough love and actually hold an “intervention” to help your adult child.

The best way to teach our children is through the example that we set. They learn far more from what we do than what we say, and they do watch what we do very closely. If we expect them to live a certain way, we must be consistently and without hypocrisy living that way ourselves. Then, if we set a good example, they may choose to adopt our philosophy and way of life for themselves. They also may choose to go their own way. The point is that it is their life and their choice, and that must always be respected.

Keep in mind that with more people coming in and our of your home, you may find that your home security can come to be somewhat compromised. Consider investing in a home alarm system from a respected company like ADT if you don’t already have one.

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