I'll admit it, I still live at home with my mom. It's not where I thought I'd be when I was 25 (almost 26) years old, but it is what it is.
I should clarify that I don't just live there rent-free. I pay room and board, buy my own groceries, do my own laundry, etc.
I needed a cheap place to live while I paid off my student loans, bought a car, and now while I save up to buy a house.
My mom has repeatedly told me she loves having me around, and I can't say I hate the arrangement, but I'm well aware that it cannot be a forever thing.
Unfortunately, Michael Rotondo is not under the same impression.
30-year-old Rotondo has been living at home for the last eight and a half years, after spending just over a year in his own apartment. He's found it to be extremely comfortable, which is the issue.
Rotondo is still living at his parents's house, though he clarifies it's in his own bedroom and not the basement, and doesn't pay any rent or do any chores.
He does insist that he does his own laundry and buys his own food, but his parents clearly don't think that's enough.
Mark and Christina Rotondo, his parents, have decided that it's time for their son to move out, but Michael doesn't think he should have to.
The Eviction Letters
In an attempt to get their fully-grown son out of the house, the Rotondos have written their son multiple letters and eviction notices. They even offered him money to help him find a place.
In an interview with Daily Mail, Michael said that his problems with his parents relate to his own son, whom he lost custody of in September of 2017.
He wouldn't elaborate further than that, or disclose the age of his son, only that the child now lives full-time with his mother, whom Michael was never in a relationship with.
Michael filed an appeal with the court for his custody case, listing himself as a "poor person" so that his fees would be waived. He claims this is why he can't get a job, because otherwise he'd have to pay for his court costs.
According to Rotondo, his parents tried to seek visitation of their grandchild, and it was two days after that court hearing that they "decided he had to leave the house immediately."
Rotondo currently can only see his son in "therapeutic environments" if it is approved by the courts.
ANYWAY, that's a story for a different day. Back to the eviction!
When it became clear that their son had no intentions of leaving, the Rotondos took their case to the local court to see if they had any legal grounds to evict him.
Because the case involved family, they were told it would have to go through a Supreme Court justice.
The family went to court, and the parents' lawyer, Anthony Adorante, sought out a court order with a specific date of eviction, which could be enforced by sheriff's deputies if necessary.
Michael Rotondo was adamant that he was entitled to more time at the family home.
Though he admitted that his parents have tried to evict him multiple times, Rotondo said their lawsuit was "retaliatory" and that he was entitled to six more months at home in order to find a new place to live.
Rotondo did his research, and found a similar case which granted the defendant a similar timeline before eviction.
The judge, State Supreme Court Justice Donald Greenwood, listened patiently to Rotondo's argument, and even applauded his research.
Rotondo said it was barely research, just a quick Google search.
Greenwood pointed out the flaws in Rotondo's case, however, and even suggested he try talking to his parents, who were sitting just a few feet away from him in court, to try and work something out.
But the 30-year-old stay-at-home-son wasn't having any of it. He tried to get the case adjourned due to an incorrect room number listed on the court notice. Greenwood noted that Rotondo made it just fine, so it wasn't a factor.
Though Greenwood recognized Rotondo's extreme research, he ultimately ruled in favor of Mark and Christina Rotondo.
He ordered Michael to move out of the home, and even ordered that adult protective services investigate the situation, citing that the proceedings were concerning.
Greenwood instructed Adorante to write up an eviction order that he'd sign, so long as it gave Rotondo "reasonable" time to vacate.
Michael called this decision "outrageous," saying he couldn't find a place to live without six months notice. Greenwood, exasperated with the entire ordeal, suggested Airbnb.
The 30 year old asked for at least 30 days, which he believes is enough time for him to file an appeal which would delay the eviction.
You could make a fairly decent argument that the only reason Michael Rotondo is doing this is for the attention. During the court proceedings, he was called up to the judge's bench by Greenwood.
However, realizing that the microphones from news reporters were only on his defendant podium, Rotondo tried to bring the podium with him so he could speak into the mic.
After the trial, Rotondo called over all the TV camera to meet him outside the courtroom for an interview.
There, he did a lengthy Q&A, which is when he clarified that he lives in a bedroom, not the basement, and that he doesn't totally depend on his parents.
He also said he doesn't speak to his parents despite living under the same roof. Even still, Rotondo said he is not ready to leave home.
One reporter asked Rotondo if he works, and he said he owns a business. As for what kind? Well apparently that can't be said.
"My business is my business," Rotondo said.
Speaking with Daily Mail on a separate occasion, Rotondo admitted that he never finished his engineering degree at Onondaga Community College because he "couldn't hack the math." He switched his degree to business.
As you can imagine, there has been a lot of reaction around this case online. Most people think Michael Rotondo should be packing his bags.
"This loser is a prime example of the 'everyone gets a trophy generation'," one user wrote, "This idiot can research the law and sponge off his parents but he can’t get a job and support his child. Pathetic."
"He's a GROWN MAN not willing to do anything," another said. "This guy hasn't lived any of his life, but carried on the back of his parents! (Whom he has disrespected!) My heart goes to the parents."
"This guy should feel ashamed and embarrassed for himself..wake up and grow up..this nonsense has caught the attention of the media and not in a positive way."
However, others suggested that perhaps there's more to the story than we know.
"This situation is profoundly sad. Yes, there is an entitled millennial attitude here, but that's only surface material. The underlying reality is that Michael Rotondo is most likely an Asperger's-autistic spectrum individual. Very regrettably, he is not as high functioning as one might hope. His narrow, inflexible thinking has got him into a corner."
"Having viewed the video, I fully agree. this man is definitely on the autism spectrum. Very intelligent but unable to think of anyone but himself. He fixates on things. He might have missed being diagnosed in school because his age might have placed him before those tests were regularly done in school."
this kid has some mental health issues . Address that first. Kicking out .. He'll be homeless. #jmo— débb (@olfashdeb) May 22, 2018
His parents are how he got that way 🙄 I'm going to guess they made about 50,000 half-ass suggestions about him leaving before it got to this point instead of being firm in the first place. Not saying it isn't his fault but uh, I don't feel bad for his enabling parents.— Miss H (@hael_moro) May 23, 2018
"Regardless that he's 30, we don't know his situations, maybe he tried to find a job, maybe he was looking for an apartment.. don't forget the economy isn't the greatest in Syracuse."