Another one?

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by Sherril2000, Apr 1, 2015.

  1. Sherril2000

    Sherril2000 Active Member

    Well my 18 year old son is still in jail, waiting to be sentenced for possession of marijuana, possession of a handgun, obstruction of justice, & probation violation. This morning I received a call from the dean at my daughter's school, informing me my daughter skipped school last Thursday & was refusing to go back to the teacher's class because she ( the science teacher) "disrespected her" by telling another teacher she had skipped class. I'm just over disrespectful kids & wondering why mine are so bad. The dean told me to come & meet with- the Asst principal this morning to work out a solution so my daughter could go back to class. She still refused to go, & he told me it would be ok to take her home until he could schedule a meeting to talk things over between her & the science teacher. I asked if she could be sent to In-school suspension today instead of being rewarded by letting her go home early. He agreed & that's where she is now. Her dad & I share custody, & he told me he was prosecuting me bc she snuck out this past Friday night when I fell asleep at 10pm after working 14 hours in ICU. Never mind as soon as I woke up & discovered she was gone(@12am) & texted her & told her I was calling the police if she didn't come home. (Which she immediately did.) She tried to go to a party Saturday where I know there was weed & alcohol, so I had to change the access code on my security system so she couldn't again sneak out of the house. I'm staying strong with- this one, because she has to learn she has to follow rules or face the consequences. I really fail to understand why my ex can't just put differences aside & help co-parent this child. We are court ordered to go to a family counselor, & all he tries to do is make me look bad in front of him! He blames everything my daughter does on me. I'm praying every night that things improve, & reading a book on setting boundaries. I swear I was a loving but strict parent with these kids, but neither one of them thinks rules apply to them now. I have 2 adult children from another marriage, & they never went through anything like this!
  2. Tanya M

    Tanya M Living with an attitude of gratitude Staff Member

    ((HUGS)) to you Sherril.

    That can't be easy to try and co-parent with someone like your ex.
    It's unfair of him to try and blame you for your daughters choices (he's gaslighting you) don't believe

    Kudos for changing the code on your security system, I'm sure that your daughter was thrilled!

    It's good that you are working on setting boundaries.

    Your two children are like so many thinking that they are above it all and that rules do not apply to them. My son is the same way.

    I hope your daughter can get things straightened out at school.

    With all you have going on and working such long shifts I do hope you are taking care of yourself.
  3. Scent of Cedar *

    Scent of Cedar * Well-Known Member

    There is research out there now indicating that genetics may be the biggest determinant of behavior. As your two older children came through their adolescences just fine, it could be that your two younger kids are carrying a genetic mix for the traits you are seeing.

    And it could be too that the genetics predisposing toward this kind of behavior came from their father.

    What does his family tree look like?

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  4. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Fairly high chance there's a difference in biology. And as you were the common factor in all of the kids... it's not likely from your side.
    What kinds of challenges run in biodad's side of family?
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  5. pasajes4

    pasajes4 Well-Known Member

    I say let him have them. I bet you a dollar to a doughnut he will ship her happy butt back in a hot minute.
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  6. Sherril2000

    Sherril2000 Active Member

    Thank you all for your replies. I love the support I receive here. I'm sorry for all of you who have been through similar problems, but it's so refreshing to hear from ppl who understand what I'm going through. I honestly believe there is a genetic component here r/t my ex. He's abusive, both mentally & physically, & I tried to "help him" for 14 years before I gave up & left with- my kids. He was a drug abuser & alcoholic before he "reformed himself" @ the age of 35. His dad was an abusive alcoholic too.
  7. Childofmine

    Childofmine trying to do this thing one day at a time Staff Member

    Hang in there Sherril and stand your ground. You sound like you have a good head on your shoulders. This is tough stuff, and we're here for you.

    Keep posting. We support you.
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  8. Sherril2000

    Sherril2000 Active Member

    by the way, my ex has primary custody bc of my sons charges ( he refused to let my son live with- him & used his charges to get primary custody of my daughter.). I have to pay child support ($700 monthly), which she doesn't see a dime of. No matter how bad the problems are with- her, he won't give up that money bc he's in a band & doesn't work full time.
  9. pasajes4

    pasajes4 Well-Known Member

    He has custody but she lives with you?
  10. Sherril2000

    Sherril2000 Active Member

    No we share custody but he has primary physical. I have her every other weekend & every Tuesday, Wednesday & Friday.
  11. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    SHE is being bounced around like a hot potato, and you wonder why she has issues? I feel for both you and her. It's not your fault, it's your ex. But NOT good for the kid.
  12. pasajes4

    pasajes4 Well-Known Member

    I would be acting the fool too. Poor baby is being ripped apart.
  13. Sherril2000

    Sherril2000 Active Member

    Well while I agree she's being bounced around, she does have 2 parents who love her. My ex is a jerk for real, but I made a lot if mistakes by letting her brother take advantage of me, & I take full responsibility for that. I'm trying to stay firm now, & not let her go down the same path as her brother. It worries me that she's seen so much manipulative behavior in her life, & she's in counseling because of everything that's happened. Sometimes I feel like it might have been better & my kids wouldn't have had so many problems if I hadn't left their dad. I just couldn't take the abuse any longer though.
  14. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I'm here too Sherri. It's tough being the only level headed one in a tribe of troubled people........makes for that crazy feeling, especially when they conveniently blame you. You did the right thing in leaving your husband. Sounds as if your two youngest kids inherited his behaviors. It's hard to let ourselves off the hook when everyone around us points those sticky fingers.....however, let me say this loudly, you didn't do anything wrong. Feeling as if you did because of being blamed, is what allows the others to take advantage of you. Stay strong and keep those boundaries intact. Follow your gut. I hope you're getting some kind of support so you have someone in your corner who can guide you and offer you compassion and understanding. You don't deserve to be treated badly. Hang in there. We're here for you.
  15. Sherril2000

    Sherril2000 Active Member

    Thank you so much. Yes, I do have the support of my older daughter & the family counselor. That's another reason I came to this board, it really helps to have the support of others who have been through this. When I feel myself backsliding & feeling guilty about enforcing the rules, I come to this board & re read some of the posts.
  16. pasajes4

    pasajes4 Well-Known Member

    I would not second thoughts about leaving the ex. Things would have been damaging all around. Daughter is a young teen which is a hard time period. You are doing the right things in setting limits when she is with you. It would be great if dad were on the same page. She is getting mixed messages going from dads lax rules to having limits. Throw in teenage boundary pushing and you have a very troubled teen. If the counselor is allowing your ex to bash you during sessions and not putting a stop to it, maybe another therapist is in order.
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  17. Scent of Cedar *

    Scent of Cedar * Well-Known Member

    It is good to take responsibility for things we can change. The trouble spot is in trying to figure out that thin line between taking appropriate responsibility and blaming ourselves for things we did not do and could not have changed.

    That was a biggie for me, too.

    Way big.

    Especially given the father's history and profession (or lack thereof :O), I think the incidents in which you are blaming yourself for having been too lenient were actually the side-effects of your child's escalating drug use.

    It is important for you to make that distinction, Sherri.

    Drug use changes our kids. If we are going to help them, we need to name the problem correctly. We need to stop blaming and punishing and pivoting on the issue of how we might have done better as parents. If we had not been sterling parents, we would never have found this site, or posted to it. (Which takes a certain amount of courage.)

    Marijuana and a concealed weapon are not things that happen as a result of lenient parenting.

    I did that too, Sherri. Take responsibility for everything that went wrong, I mean. And for a time, seeing myself that way destroyed me. I did not know what I had done, but I kept trying to find and address it. I was caught in a vicious circle of self accusation, spiraling down and down with every unbelievably bad thing that happened next with my kids.

    It did not help my kids, for me to do that.

    I don't know so much about levels of addiction, but I do know that drug use changes our kids. Their morals are affected, their behaviors and standards of dress and cleanliness and self respect plummet. If our kids were responding to the things we taught them as children, they would be spiffy nerds attending the best schools we could afford and coming home on weekends to see us.

    Please learn to view yourself with amazement for your strength, Sherri. None of this is easy. Our hearts break, our children are lost, our lives are in shambles and still, we continue to meet every day with integrity.

    That is who you are.

    A loving parent and an excellent role model.


    As you read with us, you will find that our children have been brought up in every way possible. Some of us are divorced, some married two or three times, some married only once or never at all. Some of us worked, some were moms at home. Some families were strictly religious, some agnostic, some atheist. Some have cash and education and some of us do not. The one thing we all have in common is that our kids, raised in all these different ways, are self destructing.

    Though mental illness may be in the picture somewhere, the biggest similarity in these self destructive children raised so differently is drug use.

    You did nothing wrong, Sherri. You were a wonderful mother. I can read it in the tone of your posts.

    Your son made poor choices alright, but he made them on his own.


    I think the father is punishing you now because he can.

    The children have nothing to do with it.

    Abusers abuse because they abuse. That is who they are. They do not change.

    But you are here with us, now.

    We have been where you are.

  18. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    I'm sending support.
    I agree with the others.
    Looking up "gaslighting" right now ... :)
  19. Sherril2000

    Sherril2000 Active Member

    Bless you for your reply. My ex has always blamed me for everything that went wrong in my kids lives, & after a while, I started believing everything was my fault. It really helps to hear from you , because not only have you been through similar problems, but your opinions are unbiased. My ex went so far as to go to the kids' school & lie to the staff, telling them I allowed my son and his friends to do whatever they wanted in my home when nothing could have been further from the truth. He would even talk trash about me to all the other parents at my daughters softball games. I really love my kids, & despite having to be the breadwinner for years, I was always there for them. It broke my heart when my ex got physical custody because my son decided he didn't want to go to school & started skipping classes when I had custody of him. After his dad got custody, he refused to live with him, & ran away multiple times, cutting off house arrest bracelets 6 times. His girlfriend's family (mom & step dad are drug addicts) harbored him. He learned how to survive with- them by stealing, & was finally caught and put in Juvenile detention for 13 months. He got out 12/22, & went right back 1/14. I keep hoping he will put his life back together when he gets out, but I'm keeping my rules in place & he will have to respect them or find another place to live. The judge had ruled in favor of me getting full custody of my daughter back, but my ex filed an emergency petition for custody when my son violated his probation. This has all been very hard on my daughter, & I believe that has a lot to do with- why she's acting out. I'm there for her & trying to be as supportive as I can be while still enforcing the rules. I'm praying she doesn't continue to act out.
  20. Scent of Cedar *

    Scent of Cedar * Well-Known Member

    What role did this male serve? Where would he dig up even one tiny shred of self-esteem at the childrens' school or among other parents, had he not painted you as the ogre and himself as the savior, as the good guy, as the male who sacrificed his own career to protect his vulnerable kids from you? A grown man without a job is not a pretty thing to be.

    This is a dishonorable male.

    You can safely believe nothing he says.


    You are doing the right thing.

    Your son will be able to recover his sense of self respect through your strong statements on right and wrong.

    You are his mother. No matter what the father says about you, you cannot be replaced or tarnished in your children's minds permanently. When they realize what the father has done, they will turn away from him.

    I am sorry this is hard. Your children are worth it, and so are you.

    Good job, mom.