Do you all ever think there will come a time that we don't deal with all this drama anymore?

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by PennyFromTheBlock, Jan 23, 2016.

  1. PennyFromTheBlock

    PennyFromTheBlock Active Member

    I mean, do you all think there will ever come a time that our difficult ones grow up? Live somewhat normal?

    I simply cannot fathom spending the rest of MY life always waiting on the other shoe to drop, or walking on eggshells, or making excuses for him, or .... just not being able to 'live' and not worry or wonder or second guess myself.

    Do you all find yourselves skirting around when others ask how your kids are doing? What DO you say when you have some kids who are normal everyday adults and you have your difficult one?

    Do you find that those who do know your struggles with your adult difficult children tell you "oh, he's not that bad, he's sweet Penny, etc" ??

    When my son is around I do find myself walking on eggshells and watching what I say to not help facilitate an unnecessary fight? (as in, it's not a big deal, but his perception of most comments are taken as criticism against HIM).

    If my mother were honest, she would admit that my brother fits the mold of a difficult child. He's the youngest of our sibling group- he will be 35 this summer. I don't deal with him AT ALL - speak and act nice at holidays and that's it. My mother was always one to tell ME before a family gathering (twice a year) to PLEASE be nice to "brother" and PLEASE don't ignore him.

    I see some similarities in us- but our biggest difference is I WILL tell my son the truth about himself as I see it. It gets ugly, but I will tell him when he's being an :censored2: -

    I'm just rambling tonight because since my Difficult Child has been here, I can tell my nerves are just FRAYED. I'm always waiting on 'what's next'.
     
  2. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    In answer to your title question, yes, I believe we will get to the point where we are not dealing with drama any more - at least, most of us will.

    It doesn't matter whether our kids "grow up" or not. It's not about them. It's about us. WE can learn to step back from the drama, not own it, not get involved in it. We can define our role and responsibilities on a go-forward basis. For MOST of our kids, this will eventually work. Some combination of our repetition and their maturation.

    I'm not there yet, but it's a lot better than it was 5 years ago.
     
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  3. LostSoul1

    LostSoul1 New Member

    Hi Penny...i know exactly what you mean by 'will this drama ever end'? Also the whole 'walking on eggshells'. Honestly, it has been 'one damn thing after another' for as long as i can remember. My son was always difficult...even from the first week he was born! Colicy, fussy, never slept and nothing i did ever seemed to calm him.

    If you read my thread, i stupidly agreed to let me son return home while he attends a mental health program. Thinking if he goes to the program, things will slowly improve. WRONG. It mades things WORSE.

    About a day ago i had him removed from my home by calling the police after much verbal, threats of physical abuse, and damage to my property ie. flatscreen tv, stealing my credit card.

    I haven't checked your bio or other threads....how old is your son? Does he have any mental/drug dependancy issues?
     
  4. FlowerGarden

    FlowerGarden Active Member

    I have had a brief break with my son where we weren't having any difficulties. Now I am back to going through all you mentioned. I dream and pray everyday to have all those behaviors gone again!
     
  5. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    It is possible in two ways.

    1/Your dreams come true (and they can) and the adult child decides to chug the drug life and join society.

    2/You change your own behavior and refuse to allow the drama and abuse and drugs to dictate your life. You can do this by telling your adult child to leave (if at home), by only taking cordial phone calls, by not handing out money, by demanding respect or else disconnecting the contact that is disrespectful, and by getting a life of your own that is not connected to what your adult child is doing.

    Therapy or Al-Anon, if it is drugs or alcohol, can help you detach with love and help you immensely. You can't change your adult child and often enabling their bad behavior makes that behavior even worse and causes so much stress on you that you get sick and are no good for anybody, including yourself. And YOU matter. It takes practice and I feel also outside help,but you can learn to enjoy your life and minimize contact with a disrespectful adult child...and start enjoying the rest of your life.

    Nobody should have to walk on eggshells with anybody, let alone in your own house. You can stop this by taking control and deciding what type of contact with a difficult person that you will or will not tolerate. And stick to it. I feel our homes should be OUR sanctuaries, not places where abusive adult children throw us around and make us feel uncomfortable.
    My own opinion again is to NOT talk too much to an adult child who is deliberately acting like he is a ten year old brat. It is probably going to cause less tension to NOT tell him how he is behaving. He knows he is being a *********. But if you say it, that just gives him oil to throw on the fire and he will ramp up his own abuse. I personally would not allow an abusive adult child to be in my home. And when we did meet, it would be in a public place, such as a restaurant, to minimize the abusive talk. Where the adult child can get up and leave if he gets angry at you, but you are not alone with him. This especially is true if the adult child gets violent or breaks things in your home.

    Of course, as always, this is just my opinion.
     
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2016
  6. SeekingStrength

    SeekingStrength Well-Known Member

    Penny, this thought/question/hope/dream crosses my mind every single day.
     
  7. CrazyinVA

    CrazyinVA Well-Known Member Staff Member

    My oldest is 32 now, and there is still plenty of drama. Still poor decision making. However, over the years I have learned to distance myself from it as best I can. That doesn’t mean I don’t get sucked back in occasionally, but I work hard on reminding myself these are HER choices, not mine. None of it is for me to fix. I don’t wait on the other shoe to drop, I just let her be the one to pick it up if it falls. I will offer appropriate assistance at appropriate times, but I pick and choose carefully.

    I know it’s uncomfortable when people ask about your Difficult Child – but I tend to just answer as politely as I can, with minimal information. “Oh, she’s doing ok. Living [wherever she happens to be living at the time].”

    One thing that helps is to remember you don’t have to answer the phone, or the text, or even the door if you don’t feel up to it. Let those frantic calls or texts sit a few hours before even responding. Deliberately leave your phone in the other room so you don’t even see them. If you worry about what might happen if you don’t respond, just remind yourself about all the other times you did respond immediately – did it really make a difference? Usually not.

    As others have said, there is nothing we can do about whether or not they “grow up” and become drama free. But we CAN do something about how we deal with it, how we react to it. For me, I honestly have come to accept that there will always be issues with my Oldest. Her situation is just too complicated. But I can’t do anything about it.
    Getting to acceptance takes a lot of practice, and for me, took a lot of sessions with a great therapist. But I got there, for the most part. Some stuff going on lately that has pulled me back into the drama river a bit, but I’m working again to pull back out. The important thing for me is to separate myself from her – I had to learn how to not take all her stuff personally, as though it’s happening to me. It’s not happening to me, and it’s not because of anything I’m doing (or not doing). She makes her choices, not me. She has to deal with the consequences.. not me.

    My mantra for 2016 is “Let It Go.” (only not that annoying song.. ha) I’ve done all I can.
     
  8. mrsalmeida

    mrsalmeida New Member

    I'm new here, and I'm so glad I found this website last night. I told my husband we are not alone, but also, it looks like its never gonna end. Lol. I wonder this just about every day. I knew being a mom would be tough, but I didn't know my heart would break on a daily basis. I honestly just feel better knowing I'm not alone.
     
  9. Childofmine

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

    Hi Penny,

    I used to wonder about this all the time too and I could not fathom either living like I was living for the rest of my life. It was almost intolerable and it was 100 percent miserable.

    I think this is what ultimately drives most of us to learn how to live in a whole new way. We can't live like this because it hurts too much and it is miserable. Finally, we are motivated to learn new ways of thinking and behaving (note I didn't say feeling) and we start to work hard for change.

    I agree with SWOT who said the less said the better. I also understand your need to "tell it like it is" every now and then. What I finally got to was setting strong boundaries and even today, when Difficult Child is so much better (working, paying most of his bills, staying out of jail, not using), I still need boundaries with him.

    I try to say as little as possible and let him deal with the consequences of his own behavior and actions. That's still hard to do, and sometimes I get too involved as well. It's going to be a lifelong learning experience.

    Penny, I do believe that my stepping away and back has been a factor in his ability to start rebuilding his life. As long as I was overly engaged with him (seeing him often, responding to his calls, emails, drama, texts, etc.), he was distracted from learning how to stand on his own two feet and start dealing with life on life's terms.

    The more you can disengage, the more he will have a chance to change. It's certainly not guaranteed that he will change, but he will have a better chance.

    I think it's also about separating ourselves from our grown children and recognizing that their life is their life and our life is our life. We have to let them have their life whatever it looks like. That is much easier to do when they are not living in our homes and we are not supporting them.

    I truly like to go at least a week without talking to Difficult Child. That means he is dealing with his own life.

    This stuff is really hard and I so understand your feelings. Hang in there! We care about you.
     
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