A ittle vent

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by Nomad, Jun 18, 2013.

  1. Nomad

    Nomad Guest

    Haven't posted about my difficult child in a long time. She is 24, adopted and has bipolar disorder...which started when she was a toddler! She was diagnosis'd around 6 years of age. Anyway....things have basically been the same. Not as difficult as what many of you are experiencing. I know things could be worse.

    (Bottom line: I suspended her phone service....finally get to the point at the bottom! LOL!)

    She moves OFTEN...like every six weeks on average. Sometimes she gets evicted, but in recent times, it is for other bizarre reasons (an improvement...I dunno).

    About six months ago something happened that I don't want to go into...but it was very upsetting. She got involved with some really creepy guys that fooled her and did something bad, yet she was the only one who got into trouble. The only good thing that came out of it is she agreed to go back to her therapist and has been going regularly.

    She just moved (what a surprise!). She claimed the new neighbor invited her to dinner, but then kept on inviting her. Later, the lady asked for money to compensate for how much she ate. So, difficult child gave her groceries from her food stamps to compensate. Then, very quickly she was out of food money. She made up all sorts of stories, before she came up with this story...which also might be a lie.

    husband and I sometimes give her a food card the last week of the month and ask her to have her food stamp money last for at least three weeks each month. She gets very little FS Money and has a big appetite. I think it is very generous of us. For the longest time, she never made it the three weeks, but actually lately...she was doing ok with that. Then...this happened and she came up short fast.

    So, husband and I went shopping and spent a very reasonable amount on food and got difficult child a week's worth of groceries and kept the receipt and sat down with her and showed her how you can, when careful, only spend x a week on a week's worth of groceries. But, two days later....she said she owed another neighbor two boxes of sausages and wanted us to buy them for her. WTH. So, we said "no way."

    Weird stuff going on...
    Sunday was father's day. husband does a lot for difficult child. She did not send a text to husband. She did call. But, no attempt to get him a card, etc. We took her to dinner and she was a little rude and very demanding of husband. I told her on Father's Day you should be respectful and accommodating. husband had a heart attack last year and she could give a rat's axx. Anyway, at least, she calmed down after that. She insisted he take her shopping because "after all," she had a job to start.

    So, she started a PT job as a dishwasher yesterday. Seemed legit. So, she asked husband to take her to kmart to buy some things for the job...special non skid shoes and a few things like razors. Well, she lasted on the job 3 hours. She called me screaming saying that it was too hard. That her back and feet hurt, etc. Then, she went to kmart and returned some of those things and took the cash and bought candy and cigarettes. How do I know? I get a receipt in my email. I called her and she lied and lied about it.

    I know for a fact she was at the therapist two weeks ago, but I started thinking that perhaps she decided to stop going (just a hunch).So, I texted her and simply asked "Are you still going to the therapist and when is your next appointment?" She did not respond. I texted again. Eventually I said that since we pay for your phone and I'm just asking a simple question, I think you should respond.
    husband called her and asked her what was going on. She said that she told him when she was going next to the therapist and therefore she doesn't have to tell mom. He said he forgot and that mom (me) had no bad intentions asking the question, so it was rude to not respond. She said that I might call the therapist. husband said that I wouldn't. I haven't done that since she was a child. So, I texted her and said that I would NOT call the therapist. But, I was concerned about her and expected her to be polite and text back. She refused both husband and myself. A bizarre and stupid power play.

    In fact, she rarely responds to my texts. So, then we said that we might suspend her phone for at least a few days if she doesn't answer my text and gave her about 25 minutes. She did not respond. We suspended her phone until further notice.

    husband says that he is fairly sure she has someone living with her AGAIN. Likely a homeless or down and out person AGAIN. And this is why she has no food AGAIN. She had stopped doing this as well...but there are signs she might be doing it again. Sigh.

    We are going out of town at the end of the month and I'm a little scared. How desperate might she become???

    Well, honestly, I WILL CALM DOWN. I ALWAYS DO. I TRY NOT TO LET MYSELF STAY UPSET FOR MORE THAN 30 MINUTES. I can't afford it physically, emotionally or spiritually.

    Got NO idea when I might reinstate her phone, etc. We manage her Disability money for her and help her out here and there (very limited) + pay for the phone! Don't know if I did the right thing (suspending the phone) but she seems to have no clue about cause and effect. Just hope I did the right thing....but again, no clue when I should reinstate her phone! ??? As we all know, the phone is sort of a lifeline. She must be with someone who has a phone?

    Thank you for listening. I have days I find difficult child VERY frustrating, sad, hopeless...
    Lasted edited by : Jun 18, 2013
  2. scent of cedar

    scent of cedar New Member

    You did the right thing, Nomad.

    It is so hard to know what to do.

    The love you feel for your child shines through every word of your post.

    This is what Recovering posted to me once, and it helped me. "Pray for your child, and envision placing her in God's hands."

    This helped me on two levels, Nomad. I could envision my child, safe. For just that one, fleeting moment, the terror I live in over whether difficult child is living or dead, whether she is being beat, and by whom, whether she cries for me, for the safety I represent, when it's happening...all those feelings are calmed, just for an instant, just long enough for me to pick up the burden myself, again. And thoughts of God, of mysteries we don't understand and purposes we cannot comprehend...helps me trust, helps me believe that maybe there is some purpose to all this.

    Once again, those thoughts leave me feeling just a little stronger. Just strong enough to keep going.

    Hugs, Nomad. We are all part of a mystery we don't understand.

    We have to have something to hold onto.


    We only have each other.

    And that has to be enough.


    P.S. Sending special thoughts for your husband, too.
  3. Nomad

    Nomad Guest

    Thank you very much Barbara!
    I literally will do what you said...placing my child in God's hands in my mind's eye.
    AND safety was what this was largely about. She doesn't seem to be in her right mind this moment AND as we all know here, the telephone is a life line.
    However, I just got confirmation that I did the right thing. She borrowed a phone...had moments to talk. Unfortunately, she is lying much more than usual of late. She said that my last text came in after the phone was turned off at 1 p.m. Hmmm. However, I texted her at NOON and said that I was seriously thinking of turning her phone off if she did not respond to my question. Then at 12:35, I said that we had decided to turn the phone off at 1 if she didn't respond. Then, at 12:45, I said to make sure she had access to a phone for safety reasons, because if she didn't respond, we were turning the phone off at 1 and we were already making the arrangements...bottom line...she technically was warned one hour before and my husband said we were seriously considering it 1.5 hours before. SHE KNEW...SHE LIES. The lying is sad and also concerning.

    husband and I talked briefly. We are going to tell her it doesn't go back on until she agrees to 1) Return all calls and texts in a timely manner. Even if she is busy (she doesn't work...soo...) at least text and say that she is busy and will text back asap...and then REALLY do so and to not do this often and 2) be respectful on the phone and return calls/texts in a timely manner and 3) stop the lying.

    We'll see. The phone is just a very hard thing to negotiate with...a matter of safety. But difficult child's are thick headed and risk their safety. It is so very sad and scary.
  4. FlowerGarden

    FlowerGarden Active Member

    I like how you are handling the phone situation. Sending hugs your way.
  5. Star*

    Star* call 911........call 911

    I was thinking just the other day after taking a barrage of calls from parents on a Monday whose adult children who do not work, can't keep a job, either live with them or are supported by them well into their 50's ----were all calling and trying to find out "HOW TO HELP" their "kids" .....On some occasions you can hear them in the background cursing out the parents who are seriously at the end of their ropes and after living the "LIFE" it runs through me like a knife. The words, the stress, the desperation, the 10 second or blow up bomb choices. The madness, the crying, the stress, the arguing- the yelling, the sickness and the whining in the parents voices. And BLAM....I'm right in it again. I felt like a crane prize. Ever play those crane games - YOU KNOW its about 90% sure or more that you're going to drop your hard earned money into the machine and play the game and loose - but the WHAT IFs are so dangerous in a somewhat controlled environment that you drop another .50 and another .50 and that one last time the delicate jaws reachdown and pick up the ridiculous over priced teddy bear and you almost......almost get it to the slot to claim your prize and BONK......it jumps right back into the prize box with the rest of the looser bears......and you think what? STUPID bear you could have had a great home with me but you chose to jump off the hook, or stupid jaws....you LET my bear go back with the other looser bears? or STUPID GAME....I wished I had never played you at all!!!!! Or OMG look at how much .50 cents I spent....whose the dummy now? Or all of the above? ?????? It's like you get so frustrated.....you don't know WHO to be mad at.....and all along????? YOU HAD a choice. WALK AWAY.

    I keep thinking about Dude like that in some respects. NOT that he's a "looser bear" but me going to his rescue (the crane machine - or him calling me to his rescue) and me trying (dumping money into the slot and trying) is like me doing and doing and doing and doing.....over and over and over...and hoping each time I'd get him to the exit. The prize guys make those dang things look so inviting huh? So do our kids with their problems.......Your my parents.....you're supposta fix this,,,,,,,I'm handicapped, I'm mental, I'm ......yours. YOUR going to be in a bad place if you don't start figuring out how to do this on your OWN.......If I keep stepping in .......until your 34 and FIXING THIS. So I asked MY SON.........at what age do I .......get to live according to YOUR lifestyle. ?????? I wanted a sincere answer. I was a teenager, I was in my 20's I made stupid mistakes but Poly want a cracker......I NEVER EVER called my Mother and said.....OMG I'm so screwed up, I really messed up....I need bail money......I'm sorry......I need money for food, I need money for clothes, I need money for rent.......for this for that. My mother????? ROFMFAO......My mother would have said......WELLLLLL You got yourself INTO this ------you had better get yourself OUT. I already KNEW not to call. And the involvement I have with Dude at this point????? INFURIATES her to no end. I keep trying to prove that he's not a lost cause and he keeps proving me ----WHAT? Wrong?????? (operative words here are KEEPS PROVING ME) ..........
    So about a year ago......I cut ties. I stopped texting, I stopped calling.......and he made a real muck of his life. Then it was .......I NEED YOU. I said YEAH for what? Bail you out again.....fix this? YOU FIX it///// lets pretend I'm dead......and you have to figure something out for your own life......what would you do? Who would you ask? How would you ask it......because any advice I have given you - I wasted my bloody time in giving as when I have given it? You've done the exact OPPOSITE......and now you really are in a quandary.....so MY advice will now not be given freely. I will do things for YOU because IT MAKES ME feel good and that's all.
    And that's where I am right now. If I have to ask myself.....Is this right? The answer is -----don't do it. If I have to say ----COULD HE DO THIS ON HIS OWN? Then he'd better get busy writing people and calling people and asking for help.....because I am nearly 50......I have worked my whole life......I survived.....and when I die......he's going to HAVE to do this on his own so he better get a running start on learning how to take care of himself. I think it's good sound advice. I wouldn't let a person off the street treat me like crud......I'm no longer going to let him do it and when he does????? I pull back all hands and offers.......and I can disappear just like a teenager........I was one once. I can somewhat behave like one again. Only this time I have a little money and I can stay out as long as I like. Fortunately for me? This plan is working better than I expected.....
    and those people that he thought were the best friends in the world???????? They're where? Yeah.......no where. That speaks volumes when you have NOTHING, NO cash, no job, and oh......NO MUMMY to give you food, and clothes. THEN you REALLY start to take off the rose colored glasses about who the people in your life are that LOVE YOU......for who and what you are......and SURPRISE SURPRSIE SURPRISE (like GOMER PYLE) it's your parents. GO FIGURE.

    Wouldn't wish that lesson on anyone.......hated it with all my heart......but it worked.......so I'm sharing. and We're still not done. Dude said it's a work in progress. But we're getting there.
  6. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    In a zillion years I never imagined how compicated and frightening and painful it could be to have a "child" with issues that could not/would not be resolved by adulthood. My personality includes a healthy dose of compassion. on the other hand I was close to sixty before I could even acknowledge that some problems just can't be solved with-o disintegrating yourself. DDD
  7. Nomad

    Nomad Guest

    Oh my. DDD and Star, your posts really touched my heart. Thank you. I understand.

    Ironically, as I was reading your posts, she called and was screaming. She said that my texts did not come in for 2.5 to three hours after I sent them. However, I have a friend with the same service we use for her, and she tells me that this has never happened to her. Additionally, I REALLY doubt texts would come in after I had cancelled her phone.

    So, I strongly, big time suspect she is lying again. Sigh. One thing she had going for her in the past is that she wasn't too big into lying and very recently this has changed 180 degrees. Sigh.

    She might be better off more on her own, IF she survives and I'm not joking. We did the tough love with our son and it did wonders. We do it to a certain extent with her...but I'm genuinely unsure if she can survive. That is why I hesitate tend to suspend phone service even temporarily, since it is a lifeline in case of emergency. I just hope against hope she can understand cause and effect logic. Sigh.

    What a sorrowful burden we have all had to endure. Detachment is key. I have my moments. Now, I'm going out to dinner with some friends.
  8. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Nomad...you do realize she could get one of those free 250 minute phones because she gets food stamps. That way even if you turn off her line with you she would have a back up in case of a real emergency where she needed help. At first she might run out of minutes fast like she does stamps if you cut off her phone but Im betting she will learn how fast they go especially if you show her in hours how long that really is. If you are looking for them...google Obama phones and FL
  9. helpangel

    helpangel Active Member

    Sorry I got no magic words of advise, just wanted to let you know your not alone. The only time I can count on any of my kids for the absolute truth is when they are in too much pain to fake being OK.

    I think you did the right thing turning the phone off, on a side note I would recommend she call the free phone people and tell them she lost it (might need to buy a replacement tracfone around $10 but they can shut off the old phone and put the service on her new phone) A friend gets those free phones I think he's on his 8th one in 3 years always losing/ breaking them, keeps the same phone # and I think they replaced the first one without him buying a phone; might want to check into that.

    I'll keep praying for you that it all works out and that I have the strength you do to finally make that push and get my 2 oldest to leave the nest (it really is getting to be about time)
  10. Nomad

    Nomad Guest

    Well...talk about mood swings.
    difficult child was contrite today and apologized.
    hmmm. She has applied for a few pt jobs and does need the phone. So, we reinstated the phone. Also, she promised to be more respectful re: the phone, answer questions promptly and stop the lying. We'll see.
    She does seem very shook up.
    husband and I have discussed reducing our help to her. We do try to keep it minimum. I certainly have no interest in even doing that if she is going to be rude and/or lie. At some point, I do want to reduce our help even more....perhaps at age thirty. Not sure. But, respect and honesty is an absolute and at least for today she knows it and agrees to it.

    *whew. Sigh.
  11. Nomad - You certainly don't need my advice and with so many seasoned people chiming in (especially Star) with great words of wisdom, mine would seem fluffy.

    Just wanted to know I read your post, I can relate and I'm thinking of you. You are stronger than I am. I haven't been able to suspend difficult child's phone at all. Just don't have it in me yet, I guess. You achieved your goal though so it was a smart move on your part. I sure hope she gets back into counselling and turns things around for herself.