Coming out of the fog

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by recoveringenabler, Jan 6, 2012.

  1. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Hello. I see that I am not alone. Good to know. I am a 62 year old mother of a 39 year old daughter who is now homeless. Over about 20 years I have watched my daughter's life spiral out of control and I have been there through it all picking up the pieces, paying for whatever, worrying, feeling guilty, powerless, angry, confused, out of control, in other words it's eaten up years of my life. My daughter is likely bi-polar, perhaps with PTSD as well since her husband committed suicide 12 years ago and she really lost control of her life at that point. Her 2 step daughters were taken from her by the paternal grandmother and I went to court 4 years ago and got permanent guardianship for my now 15 year old granddaughter whom I am raising. My daughter has a file with Social Services for child abuse. The heartache that my daughter has caused me, her children, her friends, her family and anyone who comes in contact with her is unfathomable. She is incapable of empathy and compassion for others; nor can she make any good decisions, think of the future, make plans, be grateful, laugh, feel joy, know love, be connected, have remorse, be responsible for her actions, make a commitment, keep agreements, keep her word, listen, be productive or recognize how her behavior impacts others. When I say I have tried everything to help her, it is an understatement of grand magnitude. On Christmas day she showed up out of gas in the car she now lives in with a dog and a cat, with a broken windshield, no money and her usual attitude of arrogance, righteousness, superiority, negativity, anger and callousness. She eats up all the air and joy in the room. She stayed overnight and her daughter, my fiancee and I did our best to not allow her to ruin yet another day. The day after Christmas the police broke into her car where the animals were staying and broke the door of her car and took the animals to the local police station. My fiancee and I had gone for a drive to vent to each other about my daughter; my granddaughter went to a friends to get away from her mother and when we arrived home we were greeted with the nasty attitude and the words "one of you has to take me to the police station to get my animals." There was something about her face and those words that pushed me over the edge. I told her to get out. I finally reached critical mass and I was done. The next day I wrote her an email giving her the websites of local shelters, the phone numbers of Doctors who can evaluate her and perhaps help to give her some psychological assistance, and other resources. When I threw her out I said if you want to help yourself get out of this mess you're in, I will help you but if you want to stay in this, you are on your own. It was the hardest thing I've ever had to do, she is my only child, and yet I feel it is the only thing left to do. I am so fortunate to be in a codependency program put together by a local hospital which is helping me not only to cope, but to find support and recognize that I cannot do anything for my daughter, it is up to her. I am powerless to make any changes. I have learned that I did not cause this, I am not responsible for it and I cannot change it. It's been a long road for me to begin to have a life without all the chaos and drama that my daughter lives for and in. I spoke with her father this morning, who got a phone call from our daughter last night saying, "if anything happens to me, I am near this address." He was flipped out. This is new for him since he has not been involved in her life. We spoke for a long time about our daughter and what has happened to her. He agreed that there is nothing we can do, she is an adult and is refusing any help. He suggested she go into a shelter and she said she couldn't because of the animals. That is her choice. That is also the most difficult thing to deal with, that her choices are so remarkably absurd and yet there is nothing I can do about it. I have been practicing detaching from her and her madness for many, many years. In order for me to find any peace, I have to set boundaries or I will go insane. The sadness, the stunning loss of hope, the grief and sorrow I have felt about this has cost me in immeasurable ways. At this point, I am relieved, in addition to all the other feelings, that I have cut the cord that had bound me to my daughter. I have no idea what her path is, I have no idea what is going to happen to her, I pray everyday that she finds her way. I don't know what is next but what I do know is that I cannot do it anymore, it is now in the hands of God. I appreciate finding this site and the opportunity to write this all down. Rereading it is strange and yet it feels right to be where I am right now. God Bless.
  2. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    Welcome. Although I have not followed your exact path I, too, have a daughter who has caused havoc on our family for many years. My husband and I have raised her first child and spent close to nine years raising her second son. When she had a third (she had sworn that her tubes were tied) I purposely never attached. I am glad that you have cut the cord. For years and years and years I'm sure you kept hoping that she would change and life would be as it should be only to find yourself emerged in abnormal living. It is wonderful that you have a local support group to keep you strong. Meanwhile I am sending caring and supportive hugs to the three of you with hopes that 2012 will bring happiness. DDD
  3. HMBgal

    HMBgal Active Member

    Dear recoveringenabler,
    I think you done real good, even though it must hurt beyond the ability of words to describe (although you did a good job of it). My adult daughter is a recovering meth addict and as I was paying for her second lawyer, moving her "stuff" from one place to another yet again, I had to say "no more." She now has two beautiful children, is divorced but co-parenting in a really healthy way, but I still feel like a gravy train with biscuit wheels sometimes for the kids' sake. Oy vey. Parenting is such a hard job under the best of circumstances and REALLY hard when circumstances are challenging.

    As long as your daughter has breath in her body, I think there's hope that she will have some sort of epiphany. Hugs, thumbs up, and much empathy coming your way from all of us, I'm sure.
  4. buddy

    buddy New Member

    Hello and welcome to another hero grandma who is providing love and security to their grandchild. You are a blessing.
  5. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Wow, thank you, thank you, thank you, perhaps you can imagine just how good it feels to be heard and to have others actually understand what I am going through, I can't tell you how much I appreciate your responses, the hugs and empathy. You are all angels traveling through mine fields which can blow at any time, and God help us all, we are surviving. My granddaughter, by the way, appears to be a normal, happy, well adjusted teenager. She went through some tough times, but she's ok. Quite a blessing, quite a gift. God bless you all.
  6. Wiped Out

    Wiped Out Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Adding in my welcome. Glad you found us; you will find much support here.
  7. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Hi and welcome here. I ditto what everyone else said, plus I have a suggestion. I would go to the Parent Emeritus forum. On that forum, we talk about our adult children who are still troubled. Huggz and what a lucky granddaughter you have!