Living options for soon to be evicted young adult?

Due to increasing alcohol and drug use by our 26 year-old son, which has generated complaints from several neighbors, we have started the eviction process to remove him from our home in San Francisco.   Due to his behaviors we cannot leave our home for any extended period of time for fear of who he may bring in to our home or more complaints from our neighbors.  We have offered to pay for a rehab program but he is unfortunately in denial about the extent of his substance abuse.  

Are there any low cost living alternatives for him? It is unlikely that any of his friends would let him couch surf with him for very long and we do not want him to become homeless.  

Parent Replies

New responses are no longer being accepted.

What difficult and painful situation you are in. Several years ago, when my son was 18, I asked him to go into treatment or leave the family home. As hard and painful as that was, he found a way to keep himself safely sheltered—at first couch surfing and eventually living with another family for a while. He's now 22. Although he still uses, he is functional—full time job and pays his half of the rent for a one-bedroom apartment he shares with a roommate. 

You didn't mention if your son has a job, or is on public assistance. Because he is not willing to address his substance use and his use is an issue for others, his options for relatively stable housing are limited. Any non-profit or government programs that house people will want to address the substance use. Given his age, it's probably less likely another family will take him in, but friends may. He may need to couch surf and bounce around for a while before he figures something out or is willing to address his use. He may hear of affordable options (apartment/house shares, etc.) through his network. My son eventually landed in an apartment complex in Hayward that is tolerant of his lifestyle. It has a 24/7 guard and is reasonably safe for the way he chooses to live, but it does mean he lives hand to mouth with most of his paycheck going to rent.

I hope you have support during this very hard time. If not, consider looking into an ITC, Smart Recovery, or Al-Anon parent meeting. The future is unknown, and it's clear that you love your son.

As the parent of an addict myself, my heart goes out to you, If you haven't already done so, please consider Alanon meetings -- some are in-person, some on Zoom, some both -- for parents of addicted children.  There are definitely meetings in San Francisco; if you'd like helping finding one, please contact me.  The impulse to continue to protect your son is absolutely normal. However, preventing him from becoming homeless may also prevent him from fully realizing where his addictions have brought him.  You need to take care of yourselves.  In Alanon, you will meet many, many parents who have traveled the road you're on.  Best of luck.