Juist when things were going well

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by SearchingForRainbows, Apr 16, 2013.

  1. SearchingForRainbows

    SearchingForRainbows Active Member

    husband and I got a message while on vacation from difficult child 1 telling us to call him ASAP. When we called him, he told us that easy child/difficult child 3 was in the psychiatric hospital - We never in a zillion years saw this coming! difficult child 1 said easy child/difficult child 3 called him, told him where she was, asked him if he would come see her. He left work, picked up his girlfriend, drove for over six hours, and went to see her. He told us she wouldn't tell him what happened and he wasn't able to get much info from staff. difficult child 2 and his girlfriend spent the weekend at a friend's who lives near the psychiatric hospital. We were on a ship floating somewhere in the middle of the ocean, unable to make more then one call to difficult child 1 because that one call, that was no more then 10 minutes, cost us over $70! We communicated back and forth with difficult child 1 through email. Although difficult child 1 spent as much time with easy child/difficult child 3 as he could, she refused to talk about why she was there, wouldn't talk about anything personal.

    Two days later, as soon as we were back on land, we called the psychiatric hospital. Since easy child/difficult child 3 is over 18 years old, would not give permission for us to get any information, we couldn't even find out if she had been discharged. We explained that we had no way of reaching her, she wasn't answering her cell phone but that didn't matter because she is legally an adult. However, after a few minutes, the nurse said she would have the social worker call us.

    The social worker called us a couple minutes later and all she could tell us was that she thought easy child/difficult child 3 was suffering from a depression probably triggered by being away from home during her first year of college and from a recent break-up. She said that she was going to try to get easy child/difficult child 3 to give permission for us to talk to the psychiatrist. She also said that although easy child/difficult child 3 was probably being discharged the next day, they couldn't be certain that there wasn't anything else going on. easy child/difficult child 3 refused to let the psychiatrist talk to us. easy child/difficult child 3 phoned us, we asked the social worker if she would please have her call us, but wouldn't talk about anything except that she was never going to return to such a horrible place ever again. She told us not to worry, she was fine.

    I told her I would buy her a plane ticket so she could spend the weekend with us. She refused. I also told her I would come see her. She refused that too. We spoke with her as much as she would talk to us but she still refused to tell us anything personal.

    Then I got a phone call a few days later from her. She said she was in a rush but wanted to know if she could spend the summer living with us. (Originally she planned on renting an apartment with a friend. She also had several jobs lined up, one which offered paid training and a good salary once the training was completed.) I told her that of course she could live with us for the summer but we expect her to work while here. She's been going through money like water and needs to come up with some cash to supplement her student loans. I also told her that while I do not expect her to pay rent, pay for food, I do expect her to help out around the house by keeping the kitchen, bathroom, her room clean. I also said we expect her to be considerate of us by letting us know when she'll be home and whether or not she'll be having dinner with us. She said that these things were reasonable but then went on to ask a long list of questions. She said that if she didn't like answers, she wasn't coming back. Most of the things she wanted, or a better way of putting it, demanded, I didn't have to think about, they were fine. The things that weren't fine have been (hopefully) resolved.

    Since that phone call, I have only spoken to her briefly. I asked her when she was planning on coming back, how she was getting here, what she was doing with her belongings, etc... Another time she phoned and when I said hello, she immediately asked for husband. When husband got on the phone, she asked him if he would do her taxes for her, she was having trouble. When he said he would do them, she thanked him, got immediately off the phone.

    She is icy cold, on the verge of being nasty, even when she is trying to be pleasant. Just about every other sentence out of her mouth contains the "F" word or another equally inappropriate one. This is so out of character for her! She also has been drinking and by what little she's said, it sounds like she has probably been doing some drugs too. I'm very worried about her, especially because both of her brothers have mood disorders.

    I know there is nothing I can do if she continues to refuse to talk to husband and I or go for counseling while here. I know I need to practice detachment more then ever but a part of me is just heartbroken... She will always be my "baby girl." I can't stop thinking about all the wonderful memories I have of her growing up, how much fun we had together, the long lazy days we spent at the beach, etc., etc., etc... I never ever, even in my wildest dreams, thought that she would become my most difficult child, especially at a time when I can no longer try to help her unless she allows it.

    I also feel guilty. Guilty and angry at myself because during her junior year of high school I sensed something was wrong, sent her to counseling. The counseling wasn't doing much good, we weren't happy with the person she was seeing, she wasn't happy with her either, and we let her stop going. There were a zillion things going on at the time with the economy being as bad as it was, our decision to put our house on the market, our decision to put difficult child 2 into an apartment with supports in place, our out of state move, etc., but, still this is no excuse! I always did what had to be done for difficult child 1 and difficult child 2 no matter what else was happening. easy child/difficult child 3 honestly didn't seem that bad in comparison to her brothers... husband and I took the easy way out - We effectively buried our heads in the sand...

    Just writing about this is making me cry. Here I am, saying so many times how I think I've finally learned to detach, and then this happens. Rationally I know what I need to do but putting it into practice is harder then I ever imagined it would be...

    If you've made it this far, thanks for listening... SFR
  2. HaoZi

    HaoZi CD Hall of Fame

    *HUGS* hon.
  3. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    SFR... instead of focusing on getting her talking when she's home, can you try and just "connect"? Spend as much time together as you can, doing things you both enjoy? Work on the "attachment" side of things... sometimes it's the key to other things falling into place later. Don't "punish" her for going through a rough stretch, nor for not telling you what is happening. Continue to "be there" for her, so she knows she can come to you when she is ready.

    (not easy to do...)
  4. lovemysons

    lovemysons Well-Known Member

    Hugs SFR,

    I completely agree with InsaneCdn,
    My easy child is a very independent young woman. To try and connect, I take her out clothes shopping, lunch dates, and manicures. She reveals quite a bit on our drives together. It can take some of our kids awhile to open up but I think they really do want to tell us what is going on...just when they are ready.

  5. Calamity Jane

    Calamity Jane Well-Known Member

    It sounds to me like she may be doing drugs and/or drinking, esp. because she's burning through money, and her personality and behavior have changed so dramatically. She is also at the age when mood disorders, etc. can emerge, and using certain drugs can exacerbate mental disorders. Combine that with stubbornness and secretiveness that comes with someone her age, and their resistance to support, and I can understand why you're feeling helpless.
    She is NOT behaving this way because you made her slip through the cracks. You are offering help NOW, and that is what is important. I'm concerned about your letting her live in your home IF she is using drugs - not a good idea if that's the case, JMO.
  6. SFR - That sounded horrible and gut wrenching. I can't imagine being so far away from one of my children and not having a clue what was happening or why. Awful.

    I am glad that she is out of hospital and seems to be working on future plans - always a good sign.

    Do NOT beat yourself up. If you'd have thought difficult child 3 was as bad off as 1 or 2 you would have walked on water for her, you know that in your heart. You didn't think she needed what 1 and 2 needed or you'd have found a way to do it.

    But she does need you now and Insane had great advice. Don't pry or ask big important questions. Just talk about nothing. Stuff that is outside of her life, your relationship with her, the recent events. Talk about the news, talk about the weather, a pretty dress you saw that would look nice on her. Rebuild that comfortableness that she will need to start opening up with you. Then, when she is ready to open up you can have the more important conversations.
  7. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Oh SFR, I can understand how much your heart is hurting right now..........sigh........, all those mixed feelings are so hard on our mother's hearts. It just must have been such a shocker to get that phone call while aboard a ship. Your daughter does sound as if she may have slipped into a mood disorder exacerbated by a break up and/or drug or alcohol use. I'm sorry, I know how difficult it is to feel so helpless. I completely agree with IC, trying to connect and build a bridge seems important while at the same time practicing your detachment skills, boy a tall order. But, it's also the time to be doing that too, given her age, your relationship is shifting into a different phase, your mothering is transiting into a more detached place anyway.

    I don't know if this is already the case for you, but it may be a good time for you to get support for yourself, in whatever form feels right to you. Nurture yourself, take good care of yourself, make sure you have a support system in place where your needs are met. I don't think there is anything you should feel guilty about, we always do the best we can, this didn't happen because of anything you did or didn't do, it just is and now requires you to show up in a different way........., which you are, so don't add beating yourself up to the mix. Be kind to yourself. Detachment is the hardest thing any of us has to do, you sure are in the right place to say that................I'm sorry you have to be where you are.............I wish you peace and send you caring, understanding hugs...........
  8. tryagain

    tryagain Active Member

    SFR, your situation with your difficult child 3 sounds so much
    like what I am dealing with with- my difficult child daughter. It is so hard.I had been dealing/detaching pretty well
    till she showed the same old meanness to me 2 days ago. I have refused her calls and texts because I want her to realize how disrespectful and profane she was to me. You always hope that they've changed. She has
    not. :(
    Hoping that things look up for you and me both soon.
  9. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

  10. trinityroyal

    trinityroyal Well-Known Member

    SFR, everyone else has already given you great advice. I'm just offering support and hugs. I'm sorry that you're on the difficult child roller coaster again.
  11. SearchingForRainbows

    SearchingForRainbows Active Member

    tryagain, So sorry you're dealing with similar issues! in my humble opinion, the easiest time we have with our children is when they're newborns, lots of sleep deprivation but, in the scheme of life, sleep deprivation is just a drop in the bucket... I think the early years slowly help us build the strength we need for what lies ahead... I used to think once my difficult children were out of the "nest," life would return to what it was like before I had difficult children. I was so naive!! Hoping your difficult child does a complete turn around soon...

    Hound dog and trinityroyal, Thank you so much for the support and hugs! It's nice to return here and "see" you. Just wish none of us had to be here...!