My son finally got a job. That is the very good news. For almost two months, he had no job, no money, and no willingness to look for a job. Thank the Good Lord, the trust pays his rent and car payment, insurance and cell phone bill. The only things he needs to pay for are gasoline, electricity for his apartment, and food and entertainment. I've been covering for him, but at 25, he needs to get it together.
So, he started a job on Monday. Won't get paid until next Friday. Last night he came over about 10:00 pm, carrying on because he was hungry and had nothing. Nothing. NOTHING. I know he wanted me to give him money. I know that was the goal of his carrying on. I know this because on Wednesday I bought him $150 worth of groceries at Costco. When I asked how he could be hungry with all those groceries in his house, he said the food was all gone. He had nothing in his cabinets.
"Really?" I asked. "You ate $150 worth of food in 4 days?"
"You don't understand, Mom. I'm a guy. A 25-year-old guy. I have to eat."
I fixed him a hot ham and cheese sandwich and promised to buy milk and sundries in the morning. I did not give him any money.
I woke up this morning, a list of the food I bought on Wednesday running through my head. 24 cartons of yogurt, a huge loaf of bread, two giant jars of peanut butter, a vat of jelly, a package of 24 chicken breasts, a two pound bag of frozen veggies....
There's no way he's hungry. No way he ate all that food between Wednesday and Saturday. No way I can break down and give him cash. I know what he wants, and it's not milk and eggs.
I honestly don't know which of us is struggling more. I fall into cycles of worry and fretting. Make ruts in my brain trying to be sure he can't really be hungry. Argue silently, convincing him (and myself) I'm right not to give him cash.
Can he do better? Will he ever learn to manage money? Is my "necessities only" stance anything more than torture for us both? He wants cigarettes. He wants beer or other liquor. By refusing to give him money, am I merely creating a situation where he will blow every penny he gets next Friday on the very things I refuse to buy?
But if I do give him money, am I making it easy for him to continue being irresponsible? Guaranteeing this will continue?
I have no answers.