Ask a straight question and get a ... wall of silence.

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by LucyJ, Feb 3, 2015.

  1. nlj

    nlj Well-Known Member

    He's been drifting lately, further from eco-warrior mentality and further into anarchist mentality.

    I've been reading about the anarchy movements here. Some of it worries me. I worry that he'll end up in jail if he gets carried along with some of the dodgier elements. I've no idea how he would cope with jail. I don't think he's thinking of the consequences, he's just getting angry and seeing everything that's wrong with society and latching on to a simplistic solution.

    So I've been worrying, not knowing what he's doing, not knowing who he's involved with. For the past few years we've had an easy-ish relationship, random texts, get-togethers every few months, nothing deep just surface contact, so I know he's ok and leave him to it. Acceptance of his alternative lifestyle.

    It's been playing on my mind though, I've been researching too much. I asked him straight (via text) if he was involved with a particular group.

    SInce then ... nothing, no response, silence.

    He's not a violent person. I wonder if I've insulted him, or upset him.

    Or has he been dragged into something and has gone silent because I freaked him out? Was I too close to something?

    Who knows ... maybe I shouldn't have said anything, but it's so tiring sometimes this pussyfooting around them in case you say the wrong thing, pretending everything's fine and just saying "mmm" on the phone "love you".

    Grrrrr
     
  2. Jabberwockey

    Jabberwockey Well-Known Member

    How long has it been since you did this? If its only been a few days you might have just freaked him out but if its been quite a while, longer than normal between contacts, you may have hit close to a nerve. Take into consideration that he may not be IN said group, just considering it, and you caught him off guard with an insight into his life that he didn't expect.
     
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  3. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    or he's just being a typical non-typical... and the problem is something else entirely. The trouble is... we have no way to know the difference.

    hugs.
     
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  4. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    I have no idea. Just sending hugs.
     
  5. Carri

    Carri Active Member

    It's selfish how they can need so much from us one minute and then blow us off and leave us to worry.
     
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  6. Childofmine

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

    Lucy, I'm glad you posted about what is going on with you and with him. I have watched you and listened to you for a long time---you have been in such a good place with your difficult child.

    I do think with difficult children---if we are lucky---we can hope for long periods of calm/rocking along/not perfect but okay---but then, because they are difficult children who are untreated, things will change and there will be "stuff."

    I am hopeful for positive things but always quietly expecting this with my difficult child.

    Truly, really, what can you do? Will talking to him change anything he is going to do? I think not. It hasn't before, and it is not likely to now.

    Consequences---they either can't see them, don't care or something. Mature, well-adjusted people can look out and see cause-effect but I don't think many difficult children can or do. Their immature, sick brains live in the now---ironically, a state we who are "more well-adjusted" are always seeking.

    Yesterday I participated in a roundtable session with a bunch of people from Al-Anon who are periodically invited to meet with Drug Court participants and parents to talk about Al-Anon. This is the second time I have gone. I listened to the Al-Anon people talk about their experience, strength and hope. I watched the faces of the Drug Court families and participants. It was hard to tell if anything we were saying was well-received, tolerated or creating agitation. The Al-Anon people went on for 45 minutes, at the behest of the social worker facilitator.

    I heard truths I have come to know and believe and integrate into my life. I heard over and over again that we didn't cause it, we can't control it and we can't cure it. I heard about detachment with love, acceptance and gratitude. Accepting people for who they are, no matter how obnoxious, ugly, scary or destructive their behavior is. Offering love, encouragement and support anyway. Respecting their dignity. Allowing adults to make decisions and choices, staying out of their way as much as we can, allowing the natural consequences to occur. Live and let live. One day at a time. You may be right. It was such wonderful reinforcement for my own journey and recovery. I never can hear this too much.

    Is this hard? You bet it is. We love them so much, and we can't "save them" from themselves. We know this, because we have tried and tried and tried and absolutely nothing has worked. It's enough to drive us insane. It does drive us insane. Until finally, we are forced to say: "I give." Show me something new, somebody, anybody. I can't live like this.

    We would literally walk in front of a train for them, but there are so many trains.

    Lucy, your son's anger is not unusual in this world. Some of us feel the same, often. It's the degree to which we decide to take it. He has decided to take it further than most, and who knows? He may be right. And in his zeal, he will have to live with the consequences of those choices, as he has been doing for a long time, in the dirt, in the cold, in the mud, as you so well know.

    And if he takes it further, there are rules and laws and norms in society, and if he breaks those, he will have to suffer the consequences, and one of them may be jail, and somehow he will live with it, and who knows, Lucy, maybe jail would be a pathway for him---to something better.

    We can't know what is best for him. I have slowly and painfully learned to accept that. He must walk his own path, however ugly it feels and looks to us.

    It's so hard. It's so, so hard, Lucy, to watch this from someone we love so much.

    Lucy, feel your fear. Grieve this new change in him. Do what you must. It's not about perfection, and we can only do or not do what we can live with.

    You are going to be okay, Lucy. You have a strong foundation of letting go, and you know how to do this already. New twists and turns temporarily derail us, but in time, in short time, for many, we can regain ourselves.

    I am sorry he is moving down this path, for you. I know how much it hurts. Lucy, now is the time to step up your self-care, and do small, kind things for yourself. You deserve it. You are worthy of all good things.

    Warm hugs to you this day, my English friend.
     
  7. Scent of Cedar *

    Scent of Cedar * Well-Known Member

    There is not a way for you to change this for him, Lucy.

    The truth is that you know for sure only what you have always known, about this son. One way or another, he will contact you again in his own time. It was disrespectful of him not to set your mind at ease, even if he had to lie to you to do it.

    Even if he had to lie to you. You are his mother. He could have loved you enough to set your heart at ease...but he chose not to.

    Why would he do that?

    We do know our difficult child kids can be manipulative, and that they seem to take pleasure sometimes in worrying us needlessly.

    My daughter seems to like to do that. She will say or do or show me things that strip me of every defense. I don't know why she does that. When it happens, I am too shocked and broken to remember that she is, or could be, playing a game. Maybe she is playing that game out of meanness, but maybe, she is just playing that game because that is who she is.

    It is up to me to remember this about my child, and then, set about setting myself back on my own feet.

    But there is that little shiver of horror at what was seen, at what was known, at what that might mean. But until we know a thing to be true? We have a moment's grace. That is a small comfort, but I have been in places too where small comfort is the best thing, is a place of balance.

    Until we know, for sure.

    I don't know which of us it is who tells us she prays white light around her child and offers her hope and her love and her protection up to God. There are no atheists in foxholes and I have done this, myself.

    It gets to be about surviving it.

    Here we all are with you too Lucy, as you come through this. Together, we are all a little stronger and so, we heal from it.

    Holding you in my thoughts, Lucy.

    I have been where you are. I am so sorry for the pain and confusion and fear of it. Even if the worse thing is true, you will incorporate and come through it.

    You have no other choice.

    Cedar
     
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  8. Tanya M

    Tanya M Living with an attitude of gratitude Staff Member

    Lucy, Hugs to you. It is so hard to wonder and worry about what they are doing. My son for a period of time claimed to be a "sovereign citizen" now he claims to be an "Indigo Child", six months or a year from now he may be claiming something else.
    I know it's easier said than done but you have to just let it go. He is forging his own path whatever that may be. I know the hurt and worry you feel, I've been there.
    Perhaps he will contact you in a few days.
     
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  9. tishthedish

    tishthedish Active Member

    Lucy,
    Knowing or not, the silence itself is a punishment. For me, I'd like to learn not to wonder or ask questions, so my loving concern or curiosity could not be used as a weapon against me. I hope you find some quiet in an answer or lay down the worry... as that is the only thing that is in your control. You've gotten some great advice from the others. Hugs to you.
     
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  10. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Oh Lucy, I am sorry. Not knowing leaves us with all our parental fears for them........and a lot of the time, it ends up being just that, our fears for them, while they simply go and live their lives.........you don't know what he is up to, he may not have purposely ignored you, I think some of them are wired differently and don't connect in the same ways, I'm not sure there is always a malicious intent. But, whether there is or not, you are still feeling all of that fear........

    I know how you feel. My daughter periodically disappears and goes no contact. It's tough on us. What I do is start observing my fear thoughts.........once they are identified, once we see the catastrophizing we do, it's a little easier to switch our thinking over to something other than fear. There is nothing you can do now, your choices are limited. What you can do is reign in your fear thoughts in whatever way works for you. Use your "tool box" and get the support you need, do very kind things for yourself, talk yourself down off the cliff and do normal every day things to engage your mind in other things. If you have any kind of a practice like yoga, meditation, tai chi, deep breathing, taking a brisk walk, whatever can calm the mind, then do it. When I was in the throes of that fear, and let's say it was the middle of the night........I would go onto Youtube and search relaxation meditations..........put on earphones and allow the peace to return to my weary brain.

    You can push that fear away from having it take you over. It's not always easy to do, but believe me, when I was there, I would have stood on my head and spit wooden nickels if I thought that would get my thoughts out of fear...........use all your resources.........and if you have to keep using them for a week, then do it.

    It will shift Lucy, it always does. You'll return to normal reality and the fear will subside. In the meantime, do whatever it takes to clear you mind of those thoughts and breathe in peace............many hugs to you Lucy..........we're all been there............we're here for you......
     
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  11. Echolette

    Echolette Well-Known Member

    Echo was just having a self indulgent winter long cryfest...it happens sometimes...if we believe in seasonal affective disorder then I have it in spades, as does my daughter, as did my mom, and it caught me off guard in this grey grey winter.
    But no, I haven't left..I read along a bit, and now I am back for real.
    and....I had the same thought as Cedar and RE and the others...it isn't about you. He isn't being cruel, he isn't mad at you...he just...forgot you. He will re-emerge. He is living his life, his purposeful "angry young man" life. I hope he doesn't get in trouble with it (and thank goodness you live in a country where angry young men don't have access to machine guns like they do here). I hope it feels to him like his life has meaning.
    I hope as the days pass your anxiety eases, and that he bubbles up again soon.
    Fondly,
    Echo
     
  12. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    How are you doing Lucy?
    Thinking about you.
     
  13. nlj

    nlj Well-Known Member

    Hi Echo

    Welcome back.

    That's a good point about the benefits of not living in a country with a gun-culture.

    There's a dodgy thread on here about atheists at the moment that made me think of signing out permanently, but then I'd miss reading your posts!

    I hope your son is well.

    Did you enjoy your visit to this rain-soaked land? (I hope it didn't instigate the SAD cry-fest!)
     
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2015
  14. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Lucy... please don't judge the whole forum by a marginal topic. We don't get sidetracked very often... and we're mostly really nice people around here (or as nice as we can be when life is beating us up every day).
    Take what you can and leave the rest.
     
  15. nlj

    nlj Well-Known Member

    I'm doing okay RE, thanks.

    Still not heard from him - but it could be because he has no credit or no battery or any other reason. I'm thinking in a calmer way now. I also think it was a justifiable question to ask and it's a bit rich if he's taken offence, considering the number of times I've been on the receiving end of his political, philosophical, moral, ethical inquisitions!

    Yes, I'm OK.
     
  16. Echolette

    Echolette Well-Known Member

    I saw the atheist thread and skipped it, for now.

    I would miss you if you signed out permanently.

    London was quite wonderful in its wintery, preChristmas self. The Brits are so sturdy! Out in the freezing weather in the dark having fun...all the pubs completely full, could barely get in the door...I love that.

    My son is not well. It reminds me of an autistic girl my daughter used to work with...the girl got cancer, on top of her autism, and had grueling chemotherapy...she was cured of the cancer, but she got so dark and sad...my daughter would see her, and the girl would sit, crumbled, and repeat "never better, never better."

    In the end she got a second cancer, a complication of the treatment of her first cancer, and she died.

    She was right. Never better.

    I am learning to accept that with my beloved son.

    He is 21 today.

    Echo
     
  17. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Hugs, Echo. Birthdays are hard.
     
  18. nlj

    nlj Well-Known Member

    Not me, I'm under a blanket with my cat on top.

    Oh Echo, 21 today!
    Of course he's beloved.
    Share with us when you're feeling up to it.

    Sending hugs.
     
  19. Lil

    Lil Well-Known Member

    Oh that would be awful! I said there and I say now...I don't think any offense was intended and I for one have felt horrible to know it happened! People have to be so very careful talking about such subjects to not offend with blanket statements. Ever since you posted there I have watched this thread hoping to see you here!

    I hope you hear from your son soon and that he's just being..."difficult" or has run out of minutes or something. I remember saying on a different thread how easy it is for these extreme anti-government activist type groups to turn into something scary. It is good that your country doesn't have the easy access to guns we have here. From your prior posts, it does sound like he has never been the violent type though. I hope that spring comes, and as his forest home becomes livable again he gets back to the more "gentle hippie" type of crowd.
     
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  20. Childofmine

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

    Lucy Please don't Go!

    We can be clumsy in our thinking-out-loud stuff here sometimes. Please tolerate it, realizing sometimes we don't even believe what we just wrote...and of course, often we don't think it through with all of its implications.

    You are so valued, and your wisdom is needed here.

    We are here for you! Warm hugs today. Put another blanket on...or another cat.
     
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