Finally hit the end of my rope

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by Natsom, Jul 14, 2015.

  1. Natsom

    Natsom Member

    Hello all,

    Another newbie here at the end of her rope.

    For many years I have been trying every possible way to motivate my 20 year old son to take responsibility for his life. He has mental health issues, and I'm sure a mixed bag of other things. He has made some very unwise decisions as an adult, and is now a meth addict and has a warrant out for his arrest since he didn't show up to court this morning.

    His Father and I were giving him money for a hotel room since he has been kicked out of both of our houses. (So tired of dealing with the authorities!) I can see now, that even though it seemed like he was trying to get his life together in the beginning, it was just a scam to keep up his drugged life style.

    Now I can see very clearly that I have to cut him off financially. I'm so dreading dealing with his anger once he realizes that the gravy train is over. I'm hopeful that I will be able to maintain my composure.

    I know I need help. I live in a small mountain community, not much here. I actually moved out of Los Angeles partially to get away from him. He has no empathy and tears me apart. It's so good to have a place like this where I can see from other posts that this is a common theme. He definitely knows how to push my buttons. Got some good training from my ex.

    It's so hard when I remember that sweet little boy I once had. I'm still hopeful that one day, after he hits rock bottom, he'll be back. But I don't know. This is almost worse than if he had died.

    Thank you for listening. I know you all understand. It helps.
  2. Jabberwockey

    Jabberwockey Well-Known Member

    He will never be back. Not trying to be harsh, but nobody can ever go back to being the sweet and innocent child they were. Hope that he grows up and becomes a responsible man instead.

    There will be many who follow giving you advice but first off, read the article on detachment which is always near the top of the Parents Emeritus board. Very helpful.

    Anyway, sorry that you have to be here but welcome to our little corner of the internet!
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  3. Freedom08

    Freedom08 Member

    I am so sorry. I don't have any great advice since I'm new too but I understand the pain. I look at old pictures and wonder where did that sweet adorable kid go?. It is beyond comprehension. Hugs. You will get through this. We all will.
  4. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    Hi Natsom.
    It would be helpful to me if you described what those are. I have a 26 year old son who is on SSI due to mental illness.

    My SO does not believe he is mentally ill. I am a professional in healthcare and should know if he is or is not. I am absolutely floored when it comes to my own son.

    You are not alone. Just remember this: In pulling back you are helping yourself and your son. By continuing to support his lifestyle you get in the way.

    This does not mean we no longer love them. What it means is we do not love how they are living and what they have become.

    Thousands and thousands of people quit Meth. But they do so when and if they choose.

    You have an opportunity now to take care of yourself, to discover who you are and to become the person you need to be.

    You will get support on this site to do all of that.

    Do not feel sad that your child is not that darling and sweet little boy. Out of the bed he has made for himself he has the opportunity to grow into and become a man. Only he can do it for himself.

    We cannot do it for them. Not you. Not me.

    Welcome to the board. Keep posting. Take care.
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  5. SeekingStrength

    SeekingStrength Well-Known Member

    Hi Nat,

    I am so sorry you have to deal with this. My son is 34, yes 34. When he was 20, i was exactly where you are now. Honestly, I was there when he was 25 and 30.....okay, and 32. I still saw the sweet little boy. (and, he was. We had the best times as a young family).

    But, my adult son is not that sweet little kid and has not been for a very long time. husband and I so wish we had seen the ugly truth much sooner. Perhaps it would have helped. We cannot know that, but we wonder. The truth was right in front of us, but we kept thinking (as you will see on this forum often) more time, one more try; this time our son will turn his ship around.

    Things went very south when our 32yo son texted about 18 months ago and asked for $20 and we said no. This was before we knew he was using spice. It got very ugly, and even uglier after that - because our son asked for money a few times more and each time we said no.....and each time, he got more hateful.

    I guess we were in the early stages of actually seeing what was going on - though we were far from "getting it." We knew, yet we did not know. Still hoping.

    I believe that when we stop that gravy train, and our "kid" turns ugly, that pretty much shines a spotlight on much of the problem.

    For you, I wish wisdom and strength. No kidding, it is a hard road. When I first found this forum and posted our story, several posted wise words, to the effect: you know, you are about to hit upon a very, very difficult journey - but it will get easier. And, in most ways, it has. husband and I know this is best for our 34yo - to man/human up, get his act together.

    Has he done it? No, and recently my mom sent him $$. sigh. but, that is not our problem. It is her choice.

    husband and I have a life to live and our son has his. We hope, we pray, we commiserate, but it needs to be his journey, his dealing with the repercussions of his decisions.

    You are in my thoughts this evening, because I hate that any parents have to travel this painful journey.

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  6. tryagain

    tryagain Active Member

    I'm so sorry. We're all on here with different stories, but we all have in common DCs we love and who break our hearts with their idiotic choices. Hugs to you. You're not alone.
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  7. Childofmine

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

    As you move through this next phase of YOUR journey, and really start letting go of him, please know that there are many programs in most communities for people who are living on the street. If it makes you feel better, find out what those are in the place where he lives. He likely already knows because the crowd that our DCs hang out with are well versed in what they can get and where they can get it.

    One time I even found a voucher for an eye appointment and free glasses in my sons backpack, long expired but it was there.

    People who live on the street are amazingly resourceful and resilient. My son was homeless multiple times as we began letting go of him. The first time I thought I would die but as I learned more, I was able to survive that too.

    We have to let go of them for two reasons: to give them the space and a chance to WANT to change, and to preserve our own sanity and our own lives. It is very hard to do because we love them so much.

    Start working on YOU. Make YOU a daily focus and practice. Get tons of support. Take really good care of yourself during this time and you can come out on the other side of this as a happy and serene person regardless of what he does or does not do. And in the process, you are giving him a chance to deal with life on life's terms.

    We're glad you are here.
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  8. Lil

    Lil Well-Known Member

    Natsom, I could have written every word of this. Our son is also 20 and, while he has different issues than your son, I think you and I are very much the same. Both of us keep thinking about our little boys and wondering what went wrong.

    I wouldn't wish this pain on my worst enemy.

    Today I took all my photos of my son from my office and tucked them away so I couldn't see them. I have all kinds of photos, from infancy to high school graduation, as I've worked this job since before he was born. But I have decided that looking at all these photos of him as a cute, smiling child is not good for me.

    Welcome to our group. I'm so sorry you need to be here.
  9. Natsom

    Natsom Member

    I can't thank all of you enough for your support and understanding. Yesterday was a tough day. But it was positive in the sense that now I know what I need to do. And I know it's the right thing to do.

    I'm hoping my son gets picked up soon by the authorities. Doubtful, since he's homeless and on foot. I have a relative in the sherifs dept who's going to put in a little extra effort to find him. I never thought that I would be relieved to have my son in jail. He's a danger to himself and others.

    On top of the other problems he's created for himself, his criminal case against him is for sexual assault of a minor. There is a very high likelihood that he will be on the sexual offenders list for the rest of his life.

    I remember having a conversation with him after he was charged last year. He was clear that what he did was wrong, however he had no remorse and continues to blame the victim. This is especially painful to me since I left his father after several years of abuse. The apple doesn't fall far from the tree.

    Since I moved from the big city a year and a half ago I've been isolating myself a little bit. By the time I left my last home, just about all the neighbors on the block were avoiding me. I had the authorities at my house more times than I can count. And then there were all of those times he decided to freak out and yell at me from the front yard because I kicked him out. Not to mention the loud motorcycle and noisy friends. Not pretty. I'm sure you've all been there.

    Here's my redeeming grace. I have 25 year old identical twin daughters that are amazing. Both graduated from college. Both with great jobs. One getting married this October, and the other next year. Beautiful, intelligent, productive members of society. Guess i did something right:)

    Now it's time for me. I'm going to go to a Coda meeting on Friday. I'm going to get more involved in the community and make new friends. I'm going to join the gym. I'm going to go on more hikes. Heck, maybe I'll go dancing:) I deserve it.

    Thanks again to all.

    Found a great Polish Proverb yesterday that makes me smile. I run it through my brain when I can't stop thinking about my son.


    A wonderful day to all.
  10. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    LOL, we use this all the time.

    Believe it or not, I found a shirt online with this saying and I bought it and wear it. When people ask about it I just smile and say, "I tend to get over-involved in things that have nothing to do with me so this is my mantra." And I laugh.

    You are doing great. Concentrate, as you are, on your loved ones who are capable of loving you. Try to detach with love from son, as painful and hard as that process is.
  11. Echolette

    Echolette Well-Known Member

    Nat...welcome. You sound like you are in a good place to start building your reserves and taking control of the rest of your life. I am very sorry about your son...I too have a mentally ill son (mine is 21), a twin as a matter of fact...his twin sister just finished college and has a job. My Difficult Child is in jail for robbing two nice people who were leaving a movie theatre . I too can see that sweet boy if I look...but I don't look there, because that sweet boy is gone, just as his young momma (me) is gone, just like his sister's days of being a hideous teenager are gone...time passes on, and we are who we are today. Your son is a sex offender on the lamb, who bullies and abuses his mom. Mine is a leech on society who begs, sleeps in parks, uses drugs, and scared perfectly nice people to death. We are our actions.

    Your actions, newcomer, going forward, will be to define yourself as a whole person and a witness and bystander to your sons adult life. It sounds like you have taken some big and scary steps to get there. I"m glad for you that you are on that path.

    We are here, all day and all night. Feel free to explore your own thougts, feelings, doubts, the ugly and the good. We'll hold your hand because we understand.

    Good luck, Nat, and welcome,

  12. Natsom

    Natsom Member

    Thank you Echolette. I appreciate your thoughtful response. I'm so overwhelmed today. You helped.