Male who beat difficult child released to treatment facility...

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by Scent of Cedar *, Mar 13, 2014.

  1. Scent of Cedar *

    Scent of Cedar * Well-Known Member

    We learned last night that the male who beat difficult child has been released to a 30 day lock down treatment facility and a one year half-way house after that. This was done on tribal authority. The tribal court was held, the decision made, and the male transported, all in the same day.

    This was altogether unexpected.

    I don't know why I am posting, really. Fear is part of this. He has tried to kill her, before. Has some grand vision of killing her and then, himself. He thinks she is waiting for him now because, once she understood that he had been released, that is what she felt safe telling him. She still has no access to the trauma of the beating. Little things will set off flashbacks. Mostly, everything is sealed away. Last week it was recommended that she be hospitalized until they can figure out what is happening with her liver and the possible CSF drip. (Which isn't as big a deal as the liver, but which should have healed on its own by now.) She left AMA because her daughter cannot stay at the Women's Shelter without her. There are some physical deficits, she has no short term memory, and she is in continual pain.

    The guilt I feel at what happened to difficult child feels like a live thing. I have been able to understand that, given that this did happen and cannot be undone, difficult child is in the best possible environment for support and healing.

    But....

    The beating never would have happened had I insisted (to husband) on difficult child and granddaughter coming south with us last Fall. These are the things I think about when I post that our decisions to detach and reclaim our lives have real life consequences. That difficult child went through what she did. That she will have permanent deficits as a result.

    That I could have prevented it.


    That's the core of it.

    That difficult child would never have chosen to go back to that male had there been a clear, unconflicted welcome here for difficult child and her child.

    Though we are not addressing it, husband and I are each harboring a core amount of resentment and rage. husband because I think like this. Me, because husband's first response is resentment, is protection of his own life when my child has been hurt, and is again in danger.

    I feel such panic, such anger. Frustration and resentment of difficult child, God forgive me, for the situation. I understand I need to detach from these emotions. Feeling them is overwhelming. I do know how to do that. I will do that.

    I just need you guys to know.

    Guilt for my behavior last time, when I wanted not to be bothered with a 39 year old daughter and a fourteen year old granddaughter.

    In my heart? Though I said it was for difficult child's own good? I did not want my life to change for her sake.

    Oh boy, if I could go back to that decision time, again.

    That would have had its consequences, too.

    I don't like husband that much, anyway. Not when it comes to this. Except I do, and it's all so confusing. Really, I am angry with difficult child too. But she is the one who got hurt, who paid the price....

    FOG.

    And now, we are in that same place again. Making those same kinds of choices. Only this time, we know more about the cost of those kinds of decisions.

    It feels like I could manage the emotions and remain detached, just letting the situation unfold. Then, I put myself in difficult child's position. What that must feel like, to know such fear, and to know you have nowhere to go.

    To know there is no one in all the world who cares about you enough to help you, who cares enough about you to risk changing the easy rhythms of life.

    (!)

    That, right there, is the core of the resentment I feel for husband.

    Right exactly there.

    Interesting to note that the intensity of what I feel, which feels more like contempt than resentment...feels like my mother.

    Oh, great!

    ::::::::::::::::

    Okay. So those feelings are useless, then.

    Huh.

    They feel so real....

    Rereading this prior to posting, I realized I took the storyline away when I recognized the taste of the emotional components behind that blinding rage I am trying not to feel at husband.

    ::::::::::::::::::::::::

    I understand she is in a shelter. I am able to get it, that this is where people specialize in knowing how to help women who have been beaten as difficult child has. I get it that funding for her is most available where she is and in her current situation.

    I can't stay present at the thought of difficult child being beat like that, again ~ the horror I feel at the thought of it, the rabid response it calls in me, is unimaginable.

    But here it is.

    And I will have to deal with it, because it is what it is.

    We have a small grace period. The situation may still resolve successfully. Initially, relocation was considered. There seemed to be no immediate need as the male was incarcerated and was not expected to be released. In my calmer moments, I remember that.

    I feel cherished, supported, understood, and upheld, knowing you all will be reading and replying. Being alone with it is the worst thing. (As, my brain just reminded me, slipping into the FOG for a sec, difficult child is alone, now.)

    Ew.

    Cedar
     
  2. Childofmine

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

    Oh Cedar. I am so glad you have posted---what trust you have to post exactly what you are thinking and feeling and what humanity there is in that.

    First, I am so sorry that your daughter was ever hurt by this man. I know that happened before I came to this board and I don't know the details, but there is never a reason for anything like that and I am so sorry.

    And Second, sit with this, Cedar. These initial feelings are going to pass (again) and all that you have learned is going to start flooding in.

    I can imagine your fear that he is getting out. I can see that would lead to all you have written here, your feelings and reliving all of it. That is what I see in your post, reliving the past horrors.

    Oh Cedar. You are focusing on one moment in time and the fact that you were not there to stand between him and her and somehow protect her. That is what I believe you really mean here. Because...instead of this one moment in time, we could also go to to the day she met him and say, well, if they had never met. Etc. Etc. Etc. So many little decisions that lead us right where we are, to today. If only. If only. If only we could turn back time.

    But as I am often reminded, I believe this to be true: Wow, you must be the most powerful person in the world, if by your actions or inactions, you cause things to happen to other people. Every time I am reminded about this fact, it hits me full on and I get it. It brings me right back.

    Cedar, unless you performed the violence yourself, how in the world can you be responsible? I don't see it at all in any way.

    And thus, how could you have prevented it? Your 39-year-old daughter has made many decisions in her life that landed her right where she is today. I hope that doesn't sound harsh. I don't mean for it to. I would never want her or you or anybody to be hurt like I understand that she was.

    Cedar, you are such a giving person and so full of welcome. But remember, you got here with difficult child one minute, one day, one month and one year at a time. Inch by Inch of hard-won ground, Cedar. This---not allowing her in your home---did not come easily at all by any stretch. It did not, Cedar. It came when you learned you could not live with that, and Cedar, you cannot save your adult daughter from any of it (as you know and as I am just reminding you here).

    Oh husband, I am sorry for his response, right now, but I understand it. He likely can't go back there, Cedar, as you cannot. If we surrender the hard-fought ground we have won, then how does that help anybody or anything? Then we are all a complete mess. We are all crazy again. We all all miserable again. And IT. DOES. NO. GOOD.

    "Bothered"? What????? I cannot and do not think that was the case at all. Your love for her would be all-encompassing and welcoming if there were anything to be gained for her---and for you---by your sheltering and protecting and taking care of and enabling (yes, that too), Cedar. You are thinking old thoughts here, I fear.

    Because YOU and your life and your serenity and your peace are just as important as HERS, Cedar. It is not about her only---it is about the both of you. We can only do what we can do. And when we learn something new, then we must do something new.

    Living with our unrecovered or untreated difficult children is like living in the pit of hell. They are much better not to be with us---those whose buttons they know how to push so very well---and we with them. It is not a healthy dance that the two of us dance Cedar. It is better for them to dance with almost anybody else than us. I believe that. I am not good for my difficult child right now and he is not good for me. We can't live in the same house. And we should not, as we are both adults and we have to make our own way, each of us. The birds out of the bird nest. The cat with the kittens. It is the natural order of things. If we don't define this, we are crippling them. We are truly doing greater harm.

    There IS someone in the world that cares that much and that is your difficult child's parents---you and husband---and when she can turn, and walk in a new direction, there is no one like you two who would be there, Cedar. You would come alongside her. You would support her hard walk of change in tangible ways. Cedar, your signature says she continues to get into abusive relationships. That is a choice she makes, isn't it Cedar? That would never be your choice for her, and you cannot live with that type of decision-making under your roof every single day, nor should you.

    I know I am stating the obvious facts, and facts will come later for you. I am stating them for you and for me, Cedar. I sat and imagined for a few minutes how I would feel if my precious son were beaten today on the streets of my town.

    I can only imagine the Mother Rage that would roar through every cell of my being. I would want to kill that person with my bare hands and after that, after all of it, I would start retracing my steps to find the million ways I can blame myself for not protecting him. And I would come up with a lot of ways.

    But today, in the clear light of reality, I know, I know, I know that I cannot protect anybody from anything. I didn't stop my sister from dying, I didn't stop my mother from having a stroke, I didn't stop my marriage from disintegrating, and I didn't stop my son from becoming a drug addict. I wish I could have, so much.

    We are not given that kind of power, Cedar, by God. He only has that kind of power and he has decided not to give it to each one of us. We have to somehow live with the helpless pain, grief and despair of loss and hurt. It would be better, we believe, if it was US that was hurt, and not THEM, the ones we love so much. Somehow, we could handle that better.

    I am glad you posted. Please sit with this, be extra kind to yourself today and in the next days ahead, wait, pray and meditate on this, Cedar. You are good. You have done all you or anybody could do. I am praying for you and for husband and for your precious difficult child and for her daughter.
     
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  3. Scent of Cedar *

    Scent of Cedar * Well-Known Member

    Okay.

    I am doing better.

    What I am projecting is the guilt (and deep regret) I feel over what happened last time. At some level, my brain leaped into that place and identified those feelings with NOW. Now is a different place altogether than where difficult child was when these terrible things happened.

    Though there is confusion, regret, a deep kind of rage around the issue of husband refusing to take difficult child and granddaughter in before this happened...there was also, in that time when the decision was made, a sneaking sort of relief that he did not.

    I still have some work to do, there.

    I would have taken difficult child and granddaughter. That would have been a whole other ball of wax, maybe. Or maybe, she would be alright, today.

    In any event, as we go forward from this time, difficult child will not be in that exact place she was, again.

    The area I need to work with then, is fear.

    Projection.

    Old resentments, present blame for husband (and for me).

    So, in a way, I am processing emotional remnants. Guilt, regret, unresolved resentment over being in that position in the first place.

    I see now that this is all fear. Nothing real. Real as it feels, there is nothing real, here.

    A storyline.

    Nothing has changed.

    Expectations of safety have changed. But difficult child and granddaughter are in the safest place they could be, already. Bringing them here immediately would reinforce the fear. Living with eyes open. That is all that is required for right now.

    Fear can be used to excuse so many things.

    In this instance, fear of my own emotional state ~ the fear that I feel anticipating what it felt like, last time ~ might have justified arranging all of our lives around fear.

    And it would have been fear of something that has already happened.

    Cedar
     
  4. Scent of Cedar *

    Scent of Cedar * Well-Known Member

    Child, thank you. Your post is so strong and wise. I read through it, but am on my way to Tai Chi and cannot respond right now.

    You stood up for me to myself.

    Part of this is that I am ashamed of myself for not ~ for everything. For having a difficult child. For never being able to stop anything that was happening to us.

    We hold ourselves to the standards we would have if our children were normal. You were right, Child. We all got here a day at a time, and there were definite reasons for every decision, for all those resentments. That feeling that I should have known, should have been a better mom, a better person, that certain belief that this will all happen again...these things you have posted, coming from your strength and hard won understanding, have helped me.

    Thank you, COM.

    Cedar
     
  5. Oh Cedar, coming back to the forum and reading your post brought tears to my eyes because i can feel the sadness and regret that you are feeling. I am so so sorry that you are feeling these emotions and more so that your daughter had to endure such a horrible thing. In addition i am very mad on your and daughter's behalf that somebody who violated your her in such a inhumane way will only get a slap instead of the severe judgement that he deserved. But you really have to know that nothing that happened to your daughter was your fault. She and your grand daughter could well have come with you and husband to Florida and still difficult child might still have found a way to see his abuser. I somehow understand your regrets wondering had you been more involved with difficult child probably she would not have gone through this because i catch myself doing this now and then. Since my difficult child was taken back to jail for violating his probation, sometimes i wonder whether i could have prevented it if i was more supportive or kinder to him but then i catch myself and stop when i remember that only he could have prevented this from happening. I did all i could that i thought was best at the moment and saying that to myself over and over is helping me move forward.

    I know others will come by to offer better advice but i wanted to let you know that i am sorry your feeling this. Please be good to yourself and your husband and know that you are not alone. I will be keeping you and your family in my thoughts and prayers cedar. You did what you thought was best at the time so please rest your mind be kinder to yourself.
     
  6. Albatross

    Albatross Well-Known Member

    Cedar, I read your first post earlier and was trying to put words to what I wanted to say to you. COM has so beautifully expressed everything that was going through my head, so I will just add that I have been thinking a lot about you and difficult child daughter and this latest unexpected development. I agree that difficult child daughter and granddaughter are in the safest possible environment right now. I also think it is human nature to try to connect THIS to THAT, especially when THAT is so unimaginably emotionally charged, but none of these connections we try to make are that simple, and they all CAN'T lead back to us. We just try to MAKE them lead back to us, because it is the only place we know to put all of our pain and fear.
     
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  7. Echolette

    Echolette Well-Known Member

    Cedar,

    I so feel your pain and fear and anger, all the way down into my bones.

    I am going to hold your face now, so that you can't look away, you can only look at me while I tell you

    You did not cause your daughter's beating. You could not have prevented it. You didn't do it. You didn't place her in danger. A million little steps lead to that..any of them could have derailed it. Maybe if you had taken her in he would have become enraged and come and beat you all, or killed you, or waited for your granddaughter outside school. If a butterfly beats its wings on the other side of the world, a hurricane forms somewhere, right? We cannot know cause and effect...ever.

    Our difficult child's put themselves in danger all the time, through their actions, their lack of actions, and their choices. All the time. Every day. They pick lousy companions and friends. They trust and love the wrong people. It is their nature.

    Cedar, look at me. You did not hurt her. Her path, chosen by her, lead her there.

    I would be mad at husband too. I"m still mad sometimes at ex (you remember he is the one who pushed military school). But husband...he made you have drinks together at 5:30! He saved your marriage. He has wisdom and insight....sometimes. He may even have been wise with the choices he made around that event...we. cannot. know. We are not given to know the other path.

    So we are where we are now. and you, my good friend, are consumed with despair and rage. You have lost your center, the one you worked so hard to gain...but you know, I know you know, that the awful dark will clear a little, all but itself, even if you do nothing. But you won't do nothing, Cedar. YOu will sit with the feelings. You can hold them, in your hands, near your heart, and talk to them.

    Say, hello fear. I see you. We are old friends. Come here, I will take good care of you.
    Hello despair. I will care for you, you are safe here.
    Hello grief. I will sit with you until you are better.

    If you do that then they will kind of, I don't know...fall asleep. Lose their ability to grip you and drown you. they'll back down.

    Because at heart, the grip they have on you isn't real. Your guilt and grief...they are conjured from air, from stories you have told yourself to make sense of all this awfulness. Because if it is your fault, then you could have prevented it, then you have some control, maybe you can prevent it next time.

    But you know you can't Cedar, you know that isn't right.

    I am glad you posted you are a bit better. Child wrote you wonderful thoughts and advice and encouragement. We all love you here, we know you would find the right things to say to us, to help us see better, help us understand, help us accept. I hope that you get some of that back from us tonight.

    We are all here with you, standing strong with you in your hour of grief.

    Echo
     
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  8. SeekingStrength

    SeekingStrength Well-Known Member

    Cedar,

    I wanted to respond when first reading your post, but it was so powerfully raw, hurting and horrific, I had no idea what to say...except i immediately felt this: guilt is what i would feel. If something so terrible happened to gfg32, guilt would be the first thing I'd feel...and most likely blaming husband because he has always been tougher toward gfg32. And, it would have been misplaced, because SO much HAS happened "in between".

    Others above said such wise and true things. They are right and you know that. It is sickening that the abuser gets off so easily, and I cannot imagine letting the anger at that injustice go easily. But, the other stuff you are piling on yourself and husband....no, you did not get to the decision quickly. It was NEVER, difficult child ticked me off...not taking her to FL. It was much more than that.

    And, your difficult child IS in a different place now. Is the correctional system beholden to let your difficult child know the abuser's whereabouts? I hope so. If not, that she can get that in place.

    Glad you are feeling more centered. so sad for your family about this newest twist with the evil, sick abuser.

    You offer such beautiful, heartfelt, helpful, strengthening responses to others...after all you and your family have experienced. You are a special human.
     
  9. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Oh my. Cedar, I hope when you read this tomorrow morning you feel better, that the fear has subsided and you are back in your center.

    I am so sorry my dear friend that this fear, this guilt has surrounded you and taken you away from yourself.

    Everyone has circled you with love and compassion, please listen to what they are saying.

    You have been hijacked by the old and familiar 'shame' that states that you have the irrational yet powerful ability to control what happens to your loved ones by your sheer force of will and when you can't control it, you must punish yourself with guilt.

    Cedar, that game is over now.

    You had nothing to do with what happened to your daughter. Nor did husband. Neither of you have the power to prevent bad things from happening to anyone else. Your daughter lives a lifestyle that is like my daughter's, it is dangerous, bad choices are the norm, they hang out with people who are criminals or worse..........it is almost inevitable that bad things happen. You HAVE NOTHING TO DO WITH IT.

    As a fellow former member of a dysfunctional/abusive bio family, this is an opportunity to look at this for what it really is......that part of you that has always felt responsible for the kids, for your siblings, for the feelings of all of those whom you've loved.........and let it go.........let it go for good. When you can't control what happens to others, when you can't protect them, then you can experience guilt...........guilt requires punishment Cedar, PUNISHMENT. Please, do not allow this fear, this guilt to penetrate your heart..........to wound yourself on top of the old wounding that is already there from all the other times you couldn't prevent your son or your daughter or husband from doing something that would harm themselves. It's a perpetual cycle of guilt and self punishment. You punish yourself by eliminating joy, or laughter, fulfillment, abundance, prosperity.........by not allowing yourself to experience LIFE..........to live the life you deserve.

    You are not responsible for what happens to your adult kids. husband saying NO and you secretly or adamantly agreeing did not cause this, nor would you agreeing to have her come to Florida have prevented it. This is your daughter's destiny, you are a bit player, she and the ex have been the main players. All you get to do is feel horrific about what happens to her. An awful and devastating place to be. Someone else makes a choice, they may suffer in that choice, but no one will suffer like you Cedar...........that terrible guilt will bring you down that road every single time. Where you were today is WAY worse then the beating your daughter took Cedar..............she was a victim of another's cruelty...........she can distance herself from him.............you are a victim of your own self cruelty............you cannot distance yourself from yourself.

    You have to stop thinking this way. THAT is the reason, in my humble opinion, that this came up now.............for you to see it, for you to recognize that you MUST have compassion for YOU, for all you've done, for who you are, for the pain you have gone through............Oh Cedar, please, don't go any further down this road, stop, pull yourself back and tell yourself with the utmost kindness, the most compassion and empathy that you can muster........."I am not responsible for what happened to my daughter."

    You are NOT responsible for what happened to your daughter.

    This guilt and this fear are not real as you said. This is an old pathway. Create a new one with kindness for yourself. With compassion for yourself. With love for yourself. With tender, warm, nurturing, generous care for YOU. That will change everything.

    I am pleading with you here to throw that guilt overboard........it is old stuff, it is not real, it is what you were taught to believe, by a wounded and cruel mother who needed you to take on all the responsibilities for the life she created and felt stuck in. Stop it now.

    I am saying an ardent prayer for you, a prayer for you to see yourself truly, as we do here.............and to love yourself.........as we love you here................turn all of that compassion and kindness you direct at us onto yourself..........

    All our wagons are surrounding you now Cedar...........we are all holding you in our cyber arms as you open your eyes to see the real you..........much love to you my friend..........
     
  10. Scent of Cedar *

    Scent of Cedar * Well-Known Member

    I have been repeating this to myself, Child. It brings a flash of resentment every time, but I have been repeating and repeating it.

    There is alot of heat, there.

    ***************

    We had the male in our home, Child. I taught him to make pastry and lemon meringue pie. (Cedar goes cross-eyed with anger.)

    He was a nice man. (Hopeless. Cedar is hopeless, helpless. Nothing changed. When I set the rolling pin out to teach him how to roll out the pastry, he froze. Literally, froze. He asked: "What is that?" I said it was a rolling pin, and that we were going to use it to roll the pie crust.

    He said he was beat with one of those, as a child.

    By his mother.

    Yes. True. This has to do with leading from fear; with getting it that the fearsome thing already
    happened.

    We must choose courage, we must risk, or our lives become smaller and smaller traps.

    Yes. I have to fight to think like this. I have to fight that urge to protect. When the dangers seem so extreme, I have to fight it so hard.

    I would like to display instead, the true belief that difficult child is strong, healthy, able enough to deal with these things well.

    I need to stop seeing her as weak, hapless, innocent.

    Sometimes, the banner the guilt flys under is that I taught her the world is mostly good. I get so confused around this issue. Wish she had taken years of karate instead of ballet.

    I get it that I could not know she would need those kinds of skills.

    Still, it would have been something.

    Huh.

    Okay, I see myself blaming myself? So maybe I could stop that now.


    I put this one in again because I like it so much.

    Yes.

    We have no choice.

    Thank you so much, Child of Mine.

    Cedar
     
  11. Scent of Cedar *

    Scent of Cedar * Well-Known Member

    It isn't that I wanted bad things to happen the the man who did this, Have. I loved him, too. He...I don't know what to say. He was in recovery. He protected my daughter when she lived on the streets. He kidnapped her out of there and took her far away, to safety.

    They have a child together.

    The plan was for them to raise their daughter, work their programs, stay away from drugs and alcohol. They were hiking, working together.

    The Tuesday before Thanksgiving, they made a huge dinner for his family.

    I don't know how to feel about him.

    When it happened, I FB his mother that we were just the moms, that we hoped for the best, that I knew she was as devastated by it as I was.

    I did that much, at least....

    It isn't that I want him punished. I want my child to be safe.

    This wasn't a beating. It was an attempted murder. I think he will keep trying.

    You are right, Have.

    You are right.

    But there is that old, helpless rage in this thought, for me. It makes me shake.

    True.

    I honestly, sincerely, believed it was the best thing, that knowing where each had been, they would strengthen one another.

    I can't even believe it happened, still.

    Have? That you have posted to me at all is an honor. We each have some healing thing to share with the other, something only we could bring.

    Your insightful comments have touched and opened my heart. This has helped me see more clearly, Have. That is what I must do.

    See clearly, mourn and clarify everything, so I can move forward without messing everything up.

    Thank you for posting to me, Have.

    :O)

    Cedar
     
  12. Scent of Cedar *

    Scent of Cedar * Well-Known Member

    I need to make breakfast for husband, now. I am going to the gallery today, so won't be back on until later tonight or tomorrow. I want each of you to know I've read every word, and have been helped by your comments and just by the simple fact of your care for me.

    Thank you so much.

    I only had time to answer two postings. Though I have already taken the healing, heard your advice, been strengthened by your interpretations, I will answer each post so you will know that I did read then, that I do appreciate the time you took to post to me.

    Thanks, guys.

    I knew you would know just exactly, precisely, what I needed to hear. You have given me so much to think about, so many different ways to see where I am.

    Cedar
     
  13. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Cedar I get it. I would have so much rage and guilt if that happened to one of mine. That is one reason Cory is where he is today. I was extremely worried about where he was living and I was scared to death someone would go in and kill either him or the baby. I would then probably end up in jail.

    Of course, none of what could happen is our fault. I also understand the resentment and even anger toward your husband. Tony and I have so much anger towards each other over Cory. I have no idea when, if ever, that will change.
     
  14. SeekingStrength

    SeekingStrength Well-Known Member

    Cedar,
    Hope your day at the gallery is a great one.

    I have read about you felt/feel about the man who tried to kill your daughter. That might complicate one's emotions....hmmmm....thinking about this. This was somebody you trusted and who had helped protect her in the past.

    Do you work/volunteer in an art gallery? Is it relaxing? Are you an art collector ? Just being nosey, and mostly picturing you have a marvelous day in a light-filled art gallery. : )


    Sent using ConductDisorders mobile app
     
  15. SuZir

    SuZir Well-Known Member

    I have a little different take of this than most. Please feel free to ignore it totally and do understand I do not write this to make you feel worse or to blame you for anything. You certainly didn't knowingly cause your daughter to be hurt, nor do you have a power to see into the future or make choices for others.

    But yes, our decision and choices have consequences. Sometimes consequences are something we didn't see coming and would had made another choice if we just would have known. And when consequences of our action are horrific, we feel guilty. Even when we didn't intend those consequences or path of actions. Things happen and we have to deal.

    But I do believe that guilt and regret are appropriate feelings after our choices or actions lead to something bad, even when we didn't see it coming or meant it. Trying to deny those feelings, that responsibility we have of our actions, is, to me, simply closing your eyes from the truth. Trying to take a easy way out. Trying to pacify ourselves and sugar-coat the choices we made. For me it doesn't seem healthy but the way to quiet down our conscience, rationalize what we did and not own it up. While wallowing in guilt and regret does nothing good to anyone, denying those feelings, natural consequences of making choices that turn out to cause harm, is robbing something of our own humanity and making us hard. Our capacity to be empathetic and grow as a person.

    Dealing with guilt is not easy or fun. And guilt may lead us to make new mistakes. And guilt is often not a good base for making new choices. But trying to rationalize that guilt away may harm us deep into our souls.

    We do often demand our difficult children to take ownership of their choices. We need to do the same. Even when our choices have turned out to have bad outcomes. And not only, or even mostly for them, but for our own good.

    Just my two cents and something I try to live with.
     
  16. in a daze

    in a daze Well-Known Member

    Hi Cedar,
    Please don't beat yourself up over this. You had no way of predicting this terrible thing that happened to your daughter. We can't always protect our sons and daughters from the consequences of their bad decisions, even if those consequences turn out to have a bad ending. And think of all the heroin addicts who die in their own beds despite living with families who love and support them. Something bad could have happened even if she did come back to live with you.

    In my mind, that's the main thing...the lack of control. We can just set up boundaries and hope for the best.

    I hope you had a lovely, peaceful day at the art gallery!
     
  17. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    I was thinking the same thing as InADaze, Cedar. We can not protect our grown kids all the time. We can not predict consequences that may happen. My precious Julie was raped at age eight in her best friend's house by a "friend" of the family. I had no idea anyone was going to be there and nothing had ever happened there before to her and she didn't tell me until she was fourteen...and I felt like it was all my fault too. But how could I have known this would happen? And how did I know she would feel dirty and ashamed and think it was her fault so that she didn't tell anybody even after hubby and I had sat her down many times to tell her how it is NOT A CHILD'S FAULT if an adult hurts you in any way, especially with bad touching. We thought we had planned. We were wrong. We thought she was going to a safe place and, if anyone, God help all of us, ever happened to her that she knew enough about our feelings to tell us right away. He was never arrested. She didn't know his name by the time she told us. Maybe this contributed to her drug use? She says no, but how do I know? Should I angst over this forever? She has done really well and is very strong now. Your daughter may strangely learn something from this. I believe everything happens for a reason (not expecting everyone else here to buy that, but I do).

    When we adopted Psychokid he sexually abused my two younger kids. We adopted him to give a harde-to-place child who seemed to be loving and sweet and had a stellar psychiatrist report a loving home. It turned out to be a nightmare. Was this our faults for doing it? It took me especially a few years of therapy to believe it was just something that happened that I could not have guessed and I learned, in the process, that most abused kids, even in loving homes, are so afraid of their abuser that they don't tell their parents. I had felt guilty over that too, but both of my kids tell me that it wasn't me...it was HIM.He told them that if they ever told anyone at all he would burn the house down and kill us all and that he was the Devil and he meant his threat. They, at age four and six, believed that he was THAT powerful. They had seen him do some horrible, scary things. They thought HE could hurt US and that WE couldn't stop him. Our faults? You be the judge.

    On another note, I believe that we, as survivors of very difficult adult children who mostly started out t hat way, take MORE than enough accountability and responsibility for our mistakes. I think we take on responsibility for things that are not even our faults. I don't think anyone here has a problem with refusing to accept responsibility...at least I can't think of anyone who does. I think we mostly need to learn not to blame ourselves for things that are either the result of our adult children's own poor choices or random acts of madness. I don't think anyone here ever passes the buck or is too easy on ourselves. I don't think there is any need to remind us to take responsibility for things we have done.
     
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2014
  18. Nomad

    Nomad Well-Known Member

    Cedar, I do believe I understand. husband and I are already arguing a little because when he retires, he is adament that we will be moving about four hours away from difficult child. I would like to help set her up about an hour away so that we can check up on her now and then.

    He says he doesn't care the potential outcome and he really means it.

    I understand, but have conflict.
    However, we can't watch her at all times, nor should we. And a difficult child can get in trouble at any time.



    BUT, in the end, you can NOT be responsible for the choices your adult daughter makes and neither can I with mine.

    My daughter knows she is I'll and I'm happy that she usually makes the choice to take her medications. But she could also make the choice to see a therapist and/or to check risky decisions with her one healthy friend...but right nOw, she rarely Does.

    I don't mean to be confusing or contradictory....but one thing I know for sure is you (we) are not responsible for the choices if another; in particular another adult, even our adult children difficult child's. Don't put that on yourself.

    I'm so sorry you are hurting. You are in my thoughts and prayers.
     
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2014
  19. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Thinking about you Cedar...........sending prayers and good thoughts.........
     
  20. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    For you Cedar........

    Rumi: Guest House
    This being human is a guest house
    Every morning a new arrival.
    A joy, a depression, a meanness,
    some momentary awareness comes
    as an unexpected visitor.
    Welcome and entertain them all!
    Even if they are a crowd of sorrows,
    who violently sweep your house
    empty of its furniture,
    still treat each guest honorably.
    He may be clearing you out for some new delight.
    The dark thought, the shame, the malice,
    meet them at the door laughing,
    and invite them in.
    Be grateful for whoever comes,
    because each has been sent
    as a guide from beyond.
     
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