I"m back with no hope

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by WMNancyinCA, Jun 18, 2010.

  1. WMNancyinCA

    WMNancyinCA New Member

    I joined a couple months ago. Posted a few things then left. The truth is I DON"T WANT TO BE A PART OF YOUR GROUP! I do NOT WANT TO HAVE A MENTALLY ILL SON! I HATE that I do! God help me I want him to be someone's else's problem.:sad-very:

    I cannot deal with this one more day! He doesn't get it and I think never will. Did I make him this way? Can I undo the damage done? The counselor isn't helping!

    God give me the strength to make it through this trial!

    You are all saints! Tell me there is hope .....
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2010
  2. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    HA! Saint, schmaindt.
    I ain't no saint. :D

    I know the feeling.

    Is your son still living at home? Regardless of his mental issues, he still needs to follow rules. You need boundaries to protect yourself, too. That means not running to his rescue every time he calls. Not even answering half of his calls.
    Not allowing him to verbally abuse you. That sort of thing.

    Did you make him this way? Highly doubtful. We have all done things we wish we wouldn't have, but one, single misstep on a parent's part is not the cause of mental illness or spectrum disorders or anything of the sort. It's typically genetic, with-environmental issues thrown in.

    I wouldn't wish my son on anyone. Then again, maybe I'm such a control freak, I'm afraid that someone else will scr*w him up more badly than I have!
  3. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    I know just how you feel!! I don't want a child with problems either!!! Heck, I don't even want a sibling with mental illness!!!

    Whatever happened, it is NOT YOUR FAULT. Period.

    You are not God. You are not all powerful or omniscient. You cannot control much of anything in this world except yourself. Often we dwell on what we, as parents - esp as Moms- did to "cause" our kids to have problems. Seems kind of arrogant to think we are that powerful, doesn't it?

    Your difficult child is 26, right? If he is not on his own then he needs to be. He may qualify for SSI or disability. He also may get help from vocational rehab. They are things to look into. If he cannot handle things on his own then you may have to encourage him to find a group home or subsidized housing. These things can be arranged though it will take some work.

    If he is blaming everything on you then he needs to be allowed to do it on his own. Often our kids are not capable of learning anything except by experience. Hearing that someone was hurt by something makes a difficult child wonder if he could do it and have a different outcome.

    You may find it helpful to read through the archives for info and ideas. I would focus on articles about detachment if I were you. It is probably the most emotionally healthy way to handle an adult difficult child.
  4. Mattsmom277

    Mattsmom277 Active Member

    First ... (((HUGS)))

    Second ... sounds like NOW is the PERFECT time to join our group. Your feelings are so normal and difficult to come to terms with. And even surrounded by loving and understanding family and friends, there is just something unique and needed and necessary and helpful and meaningful about talking with parents who have run the same gauntlet that you have and will.

    Third ... there IS hope! There is hope for your child, there is hope for you to adjust to this, there is hope that if your child has a difficult path long term (hope not) you can still learn the tools to help you balance the line between loving and worrying about and trying to help your child, vs allowing their illness and issues to absord ones life and drown one in pain (easily done, better not done!).

    I'm going to guess things are extra tough for you right now. Are you able to share a bit more so that we might offer support in more particular terms? If not, thats okay too. Just know we are all here, we've all struggled and although we all have different paths, we are all the same. We are all parents with kids who do or have struggled very deeply, who want the very best for them.
  5. Nomad

    Nomad Guest

    BUT....First of all, I"m so sorry. I can feel/hear/see your pain and sorrow. We are familiar with it.
    It is profoundly hard, but your child is of an age where it is time to let go. Chances are, you didn't cause this and you certainly don't deserve this.
    But, it is what it is.
    If he needs specialized services and it wont hurt you to provide them, you might consider doing so. For example, continue paying for a psychiatrist, a therapist and/or occupational therapist. Is he seeing a medical doctor? Might medication be of some help? Do you think you might benefit from family therapy as an add-on? These are things to be considered.

    However, at his age, he really needs to be doing what he can to move forward in life.

    Have you personally considered therapy? This is JUST for YOU. All of this is NOT easy. There is no shame if the sorrow and stress gets to be 'over the top.' In the mean time, one thing you know for sure, there is hope for you. Hope to let this go, find what brings you joy and go for that....one day at a time....again, re-discover what YOU like to do, invest in yourself (you can count on YOU) and find joy.

    Check out Janet/Suz's detachment linkes.

    Meanwhile read the following:

    "Letting Go"
    * To "let go" does not mean to stop caring; it means I can't do it for someone else.
    * To "let go" is not to cut myself off; it's the realization I can't control another.
    * To "let go" is not to enable, but to allow learning from natural consequences.
    * To "let go" is to admit powerlessness, which means the outcome is not in my hands.
    * To "let go" is not to try to change or blame another; it's to make the most of myself.
    * To "let go" is not to care for, but to care about.
    * To "let go" is not to fix, but to be supportive.
    * To "let go" is not to judge, but to allow another to be a human being.
    * To "let go" is not to be in the middle arranging all the outcomes, but to allow others to affect their own destinies.
    * To "let go" is not to be protective; it's to permit another to face reality.
    * To "let go" is not to deny, but to accept.
    * To "let go" is not to nag, scold or argue, but instead to search out my own shortcomings and correct them.
    * To "let go" is not to criticize and regulate anybody, but to try to become what I dream I can be.
    * To "let go" is not to adjust everything to my desires, but to take each day as it comes and cherish myself in it.
    * To "let go" is to not regret the past, but to grow and live for the future.
    * To "let go" is to fear less and love myself more.
    Lasted edited by : Jun 18, 2010
  6. PonyGirl

    PonyGirl Warrior Parent

    Oh Nancy! So sorry you're feeling so bad. My son is not diagnosis MI. But he's an addict. I'm so ashamed of him! Well, okay, not of him, but of the rotten things he does! Day in and day out, this kid makes me so darn ashamed. I feel guilty, too. I feel like there's no hope, either. You are not alone, my friend. Look at the detachment stuff, it truly is a life-saver. It DOES get better! And, then it gets worse again. And then it gets better! Or, at least, it gets different.

    I've been on this road with my son for 10 years. There was a brief period when I thought he was really going to be okay. He had a son of his own. He got married. He had a steady full-time job. But.... then he got drunk again, and he went back to jail again, and he lost his job again, and it was off to the races once more.

    And so, just today in fact, at the latest news that he was about to go off and party for the weekend while his son is in the hospital after receiving a bone marrow transplant, well, I practiced my detachment skills once again. It doesn't make the problems go away. But it changes my perception of those problems. It puts the problems where they need to be. Their his problems, my daughter-in-law's problems. Their not my problems. I haven't been involved in my son's daily life for many years, but recently we've spent a lot of time together at the hospital. Today I was reminded of exactly why I haven't been so involved. It's too hard for me. I'm okay with that.

    Keep the faith, Nancy! Baby steps, a day at a time. It will get better!

  7. KTMom91

    KTMom91 Well-Known Member

    Many, many hugs. I understand. Though things are going well (knock wood) at my house right now, I can't help waiting for the other shoe to drop.
  8. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    I, too, understand how you feel. It just doesn't seem fair...does it?

    You are not at fault. You have done and are doing your best. Hope?? Some of our family members have seen improvements. I hope you do too. Hugs. DDD
  9. CrazyinVA

    CrazyinVA Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Nope, it's not fair at all :( Hope? The hope I would offer you is that YOU can feel better about this. I can't guarantee that your son will get better... but what I've learned is that by working on myself and my reactions to my kids' behavior, the overall situation improved and didn't drive me so crazy any more. In turn, they didn't *act* quite so "crazy" any more, at least around me. The more help I sought for myself (not for them, mind you, for ME), the better I got at detaching, and the better I got at establishing boundaries and letting them know what behavior I would and wouldn't accept. Lo and behold, they slowly stopped abusing me and taking advantage of me. Oh they haven't stopped completely, and they still don't seek enough help for themselves and make lousy decisions, and my Oldest in particular can still be pretty unstable from a M.I. standpoint, but we're not so enmeshed with each other. My happiness isn't as dependent on their stability as it used to be. I wanted them to be someone else's problem, too, and guess what? They are.. they are their OWN problem (and whatever codependent folks that choose to be around them), not mine. They're adults.

    I realize that sounds very simplistic, and it really isn't ... it takes a LOT of practice. It took me years to get to this point. But there IS hope for your own sanity and sense of stability.
  10. WMNancyinCA, I can so totally relate!!!!!!!!!!!!

    I agree with susiestar... at 26 "If he is not on his own then he needs to be."

    It's a tough stand but it will help him in the long run.

    I like Nomad's "letting go" post...

    Quite often I'll take a break from visiting here... Because my kids are Legally Adults! My hubby and I get to ride out our beautiful lives into the sunset. But when I "need to" vent I'm sooooooooo grateful this place exists!!!!!!

    I figured I don't need to be staring at the empty difficult child beds with my heart breaking every day! For a while I considered closing those bedroom doors so I wouldn't have to look anymore....


    We recently bumped into an old acquaintance who moved across country to teach... it didn't work out for her... the school she was at had a mold problem and she got very ill... she needed to move back across country to a nearby town.

    I found out this woman and her special needs daughter had no beds... The minute I heard that my heart overflowed with joy knowing the empty beds that were painful daily reminders of our children's Reactive Attachment Disorder related rejection could really be a blessing to another family!!! We loaded up the van a couple of times and delivered much needed furniture to that family.

    Now I have more peace when I look into the emptied rooms formerly occupied by our difficult children! husband and I are hoping to move out of state... It feels like removing 2 bedrooms worth of furniture was the first official step toward our beautiful dance in the sun-setting years.

    In the meantime... our healthy-"attached" bio-daughter had requested that we save her furniture for her... so we'll be moving that up the next time we head her way.

    Hugs for now... and I'll be praying for you and your difficult child and all who love him!!!!!
  11. Bean

    Bean Member

    I'm with you, honey. I don't wanna be here, either. I felt like that when I went to the Al-Anon meetings. Like, do I really belong here?! I don't want to be here or there or dealing with any of this stuff. It isn't fair and it sucks. But... it is what it is. And we have to get through it. Thank God for places like this, and meetings like Al-anon, etc. because it reminds us that we're not alone in this. It's a small comfort and it doesn't change anything beyond what we have control of changing - ourselves. Great advice preceded my post.
  12. Kathy813

    Kathy813 Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Here's another wishing I didn't have a mentally ill child but we all have to deal with the hands that we are dealt. Stop blaming yourself. I like what a therapist that I was talking to today said to me. "Your child was born different but no one gave you the manual on how to raise a 'different and difficult' child. You did the best you could with what you knew." It took a weight off my shoulders.

    We are now convinced that our daughter has a borderline personality disorder. I had done research and found almost all the experts blame it on "invalidating parents." When I said to the therapist that meant husband and I were to blame, she told me to stop and back up. Invalidating parents means that our difficult child did not get the validation that she was looking for or needed but that didn't mean that we did anything wrong. The way that we raised our children worked for easy child but did not work for difficult child. She explained it as we were talking French and difficult child was talking German and we just weren't getting each other. I liked the language analogy.

    So let go of the blame game and start taking care of yourself. Our difficult child is 25 and has no place to live and is trying very hard to get us to let her come back or give her money to rent an apartment. It is very hard but we are standing our ground this time.

    Your difficult child is 26 and mentally ill. That's a fact that you can't change. Read through the links that Nomad talked about. I found it very helpful and think it is time that I go back and read them again.

    You asked for us to tell you that there is hope. Hope that your child will stop being mentally ill? Probably not. But there is hope for you to have a happy life in spite of your son's illness. Some of us have become very good at compartmentalizing our childrens' problems and not letting them spill over and take over our lives. It is something that you have to work on but can be done.