Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by Skylark Matrix, Aug 24, 2007.

  1. Skylark Matrix

    Skylark Matrix New Member

    I've read the posts today about detaching, and finally the light came on -- my difficult child is happy doing what she is doing, she wants to be that way, its her choice. I really do get it. BUT then the "but's" start. Am I being responsible by letting her do what she wants, am I throwing her to the wolves????? Because of her low cognitive ability will she ever be able to make competent choices that are in her own best interests???? She was happy last year too, and told us frequently during her 9 month stint at home that she is quite capable of taking care of herself, because she is still alive. However, not having a place to live and sleeping with dozens of guys is not healthy lifestyle choice.
    As I ponder all of this I do still sort of get it -- she wants that kind of life --- just as I want a simple life, I don't have a job exactly at my skill level, I don't make as much money as I could, I don't change furniture, cars, etc. as often as say "Paris Hilton" would and the Hiltons of the world would probably have the same concerns about me (if they loved me as I love my difficult child) as I do about my child.
    Some more rambling. This is such a great site to come to.
  2. scent of cedar

    scent of cedar New Member

    If cognitive skills are an issue, have you tried simple teaching tools like a decision tree? (I'm sure you probably already have. I just thought I would ask though, in case you hadn't thought to use that tool in the life skills sense.)

    A decision tree is a simple way for her to see the results of her choices. Sort of a tool to keep around to remind her what may happen if she chooses to have sex without using physical barrier protection every time, or if she chooses to eat french fries instead of fresh veggies or whatever.

    Once you have done those things, once you have helped your child understand how to function to the best of her ability to do that, then you HAVE to step back.

    You cannot do it for her, or she will never learn to do for herself.

    We all need to learn to tell ourselves that it isn't going to be easy to do what needs to be done. Other parents are not facing the challenges we are facing. They will never understand and chances are, they would not be dealing with the issues we face as well as we are.

    We need to learn to give ourselves credit for all the things we have done right. :smile:

    And we need to acknowledge that it probably will never FEEL as though we have done it well ~ but given our circumstances, we have.

  3. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful


    I understand your worry.

    Travis' maturity level is no where near his age of 21, add in the brain damage, other dxes, plus disabilities and who knows if he'll ever be able to live on his own as a functioning adult.

    This might sound a bit strange. But after his last stroke with the polycythemia vera I had a wake up call. What right do I have to deny him every opportunity to live the life he wants?

    Travis wants his own apartment. Who can blame him? He is 21 afterall. And honestly, while he lives here his siblings and husband tend to treat him like a 10 yr old. He's not really happy. Travis is hanging in a limbo between childhood and adulthood.

    The last time Travis wanted an apartment it scared the heck out of me. I didn't tell him no, but I wasn't gung ho about the idea either. I think he gave up on the idea due to lack of enthusiasm.

    Travis with the new job has plans to move out. I'm supporting him 100 percent. The whole thing still scares me. But this is something he wants, needs, and we'll never know if he can do it if he doesn't go out and try.

    Although he doesn't know it, Travis is my one exception to the "you don't get to move back" rule. This is due to his disabilities. While I want to push him forward, I also have to be realistic. He could lose his vision completely at any time and need to move back during a rehab phase. He could suffer another stroke from the PV and also need rehab. Any number of things. So his moving back home would be decided based on the situation.

    Plus easy child is organizing her life to also be his safety net.