Overwhelming Pain

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by LilaWynnter, Jul 13, 2015.

  1. Freedom08

    Freedom08 Member

    Hi all, I am new here but unfortunately not new to having a difficult child. It has been difficult since she was 5. Last week she left for another state saying she would be back in a few weeks only to find out now she's not planning on coming back. It is a very long story and I will post it once I can form a clear thought and stop crying but my question today is how do you move on?. How do you find happiness and joy again because right now this feels like total hell. She left last Wednesday's and every day we find out she's putting herself further at risk and hanging out with the wrong crowd. I know she's an adult and could have made better choices but I feel like the whole thing is my fault. I keep going back in time thinking what I could have done differently and where I went wrong. I am not perfect but I have no idea how she got on this path. All I can do is pray and even that doesn't bring any comfort.

    She tells people that we abuse her , she even set up a crowd sourcing site to raise money to get away from her 'abusive family'!. I have been just beside myself and have cried more than I could have ever imagined in the last week. We keep asking her to come home, that we will help her and I know that's enabling but I feel helpless right now. I feel like nothing is ever going to be okay again. How do you do this????? I don't want to get the call someday that she is dead.

    I have been reading the posts on this website for the last few days and everything is so familiar to me. I have to stop reading sometimes because it just hurts too much. It hits too close to home.

    She left for a few months last year but came back and things were going well, I don't know how this happened . I am just beside myself with worry and grief. I have a younger child and I know I need to be okay for him but I cannot stop crying.
     
  2. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Hi, and welcome.

    Mind if I ask a really stupid question? Is your younger child just like your older child? I thought not.
    And I don't think you did anything majorly different in parenting.
    So... no. It is not your fault.

    We - other parents on this site - "get it". We've been accused of all sorts of parenting "infractions" due to the behavior of our kids. We're not perfect either. But usually... there is something else involved.

    You say she's been difficult since she was 5, and she's an adult now. How old? (not that it makes a huge difference, but there is a difference between 18 and say, 28, in that at 28, there is even less you can do).

    Any diagnoses? Any evaluations? Ever been on medications? Drug/alcohol abuser?
    Any mental health issues run on either side of her biological family roots?
     
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  3. Freedom08

    Freedom08 Member

    She's 19 almost 20, my younger one is 14. She was diagnosed with ADD at 13 and we thought that was finally the answer. Sadly it was not. To complicate things even further is she was born a he who at first thought he was bisexual at 13 but after a few years came out as transgender. To say that threw our family for a loop would be a understatement. She was in counseling for 3 years and in my opinion should not have stopped going. We have accepted it and have been supportive but it's never been enough for her. Her pcp thinks she might be bipolar and has prescribed new medication but she hasn't been on it very long.

    I just do not understand . She is so intelligent but did poorly in school and does not want to go to college or work. She thinks she qualifies for disability and will live off of that and donations.

    The constant worry about safety is the number one thing on my mind. I cannot breathe thinking she isn't safe. She is with other transgender people but the crowd isn't a good one. It scare me to death. I called her yesterday and it didn't go well. She told me she doesn't want to come home because we've treats her like sh,,,#t her whole life. I really want to drive to where she is and pick her up and I would if I thought she would come with me. There is no peace in my mind. I cannot function. I am restless and cannot sleep or eat. It is total hell
     
  4. Freedom08

    Freedom08 Member

    My ex husband is an alcoholic and so is his mother and I suspect they both have Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD). I have anxiety which comes and goes but never to the point where I can't function, until now
     
  5. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Is she compliant with taking medications? because that's the only way they will work. From what you describe, yes, bi-polar would be one explanation.

    Lots of "our" kids started with a diagnosis of ADD or ADHD. Sometimes they are that plus other things, sometimes the first diagnosis is wrong.

    The medical system isn't very advanced at dealing with mental illness. Too often it goes undiagnosed, and therefore untreated. Which isn't fair to the person, their family, or society at large. That isn't your fault either.
     
  6. Jabberwockey

    Jabberwockey Well-Known Member

    Hello and welcome. Sorry you need to be here but you came to a good place with a ton of amassed knowledge and experience. My first suggestion would be to read the article at the beginning of the Emeritus forum on detaching. You're a mom and you want to run out and fix it, to protect your child. I get that as our son is in a similar situation except he has no diagnosis although we're fairly certain he is high functioning Aspie. The fundamental problem that you face her is that you CAN'T. And, more importantly, you shouldn't even if you could. Your daughter is an adult legally if not emotionally. Its her life, she will screw it up or she wont. Its all on her now.

    Sounds easy enough, right? Yeah, not so much. On paper it's very simple but putting it in practice will take time, experience, and mistakes on your part. Detaching is never easy. You will back slide, you will scream in frustration because you can see the stupidity and pain coming from the choices she is making but again, you have to remember that they are her choices to make. You have to become a bit of a cynic, but only a bit. Don't ever lose your love for your daughter, just don't allow her to manipulate and control your life. And make no mistake, with how she has you acting right now SHE is in control.

    A couple of more things. First off, many people on this site will offer you advice. First and foremost is to take what you need and leave the rest. Just because it worked for me doesn't mean it will work for you. Second, when you feel you cant get your daughters problems out of your head just repeat this Polish proverb "Not my circus, not my monkeys!". Finally, although someone will probably add to this list, get help. Al-Anon, CODA, counseling, whatever it takes for you to survive this.

    Oh, one more thing. You may want to put a signature on your posts so you don't have to keep repeating yourself when people are trying to figure out what's going on. You don't have to have a ton of detail, just enough to get the main point across.

    Again, welcome to our crazy little corner of the internet!
     
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  7. Freedom08

    Freedom08 Member


    Thank you. I think she is complaint with taking medication. I guess time will tell on that one.

    She has had many many years of counseling and it seems to have not done any good. It's frustrating to say the least
     
  8. Freedom08

    Freedom08 Member


    I suspect Aspie with her as well. It would make sense. I have read the detachment article and will probably have to read it 500 more times but as much as I intellectually understand it my head can't accept it. She doesn't want any contact with us which should make it easy but I cannot stop trying to reach out to her. I texted her a little while ago asking if she is safe and she said she is so I guess that has to be enough for now. Who knows.
     
  9. Tanya M

    Tanya M Living with an attitude of gratitude Staff Member

    Welcome,
    I am so sorry for the pain you are experiencing. It is not an easy journey detaching from our D C's. It takes time, strength and courage. I know right now you think you don't have it in you but I'm telling you that you do. I and many others here have felt that deep darkness that you are in now. You are not alone.
    You have taken an important step and you have reached out. If you have not done so already I would recommend that you get some individual counseling. While this site is a God send and there is great support here there is really no replacing having one on one with a professional who can help you to learn how to set healthy boundaries with your D C.
    There is an article at the top of Parent Emeritus about detachment, I suggest you read it. Print it out and keep a copy with you.
    The fact that she's TG complicates things for her, I can't even begin to imagine all the emotions that she is going through. I agree, she should still be in therapy. She has made a choice to hang with other TG people and I suppose she finds some comfort in that and it's too bad they do not appear to be a good group of people. Don't get me wrong, I do not excuse her making claims of abuse but I would not be surprised if some of these people she's hanging with have fed into that line of thinking. I do hope someday she realizes how much you love her. There are so many people who are TG or Gay and their families shun them. That may be the case with some of the people she's hanging with.
    Again, I think a therapist can really help you with all of this.
    As for her making claims of abuse, you know the truth and that is what you have to hold onto. My son did the same thing, it's a common thing our D C's do.
    Try and focus on the child you still have at home. Take some time just for the two of you, go to a movie or the zoo. Also, take time to do something just for you. It's so easy to become consumed with our D C's that we forget to take care of ourselves.
    There was a time for me that I really thought I would suffocate from the darkness but I didn't and you won't either. You WILL get through this.
    Keep posting. We are here for you.
    ((HUGS)) to you......................
     
  10. Jabberwockey

    Jabberwockey Well-Known Member

    And you will probably have to read it even more than that! Just remember that detachment is a process that can take a very long time but every step forward helps.

    I know this will be hard on you but try something. Don't contact her for a week. The thing is, she expects you to contact her. No matter what she may say she is probably reveling in it because she knows her actions are driving you crazy. Odds are, she will contact you before the week is up but if she doesn't she doesn't and you've proven to yourself that you can go without contacting her for a week without your world imploding.
     
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  11. Jabberwockey

    Jabberwockey Well-Known Member

    Maybe she's doing this to be accepted by the group?
     
  12. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    You are not responsible for the difficult life your child has so far lived. Maybe she needs to blame somebody so it's you. I wasn't there. I don't know. I do know that wondering what we did wrong is a waste of time. Half the time, they can't even articulate it.

    The only person who can control your daughter is your daughter. We have control over just ourselves, but we can learn to change our thinking and attitude and reaction to our adult children who want to "punish" us for their own reasons. Worrying about them makes us sick and stressed and does not help them one bit. Slowly learning detachment skills and how to move on so that YOU can have a life I feel works the best.

    It is always very hurtful, but you CAN learn how to live a great life in spite of your daughter. Just keep posting and reading how we do it.

    Hugs for your hurting heart. It is sad that parents of transgendered youth shun them for things they can't control, but your daughter wasn't shunned. It makes no sense to treat you as if you had shunned her...
     
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  13. Tanya M

    Tanya M Living with an attitude of gratitude Staff Member

    I completely agree!!
    Going no contact or limited contact is a very good tool in the detachment process.
     
  14. Freedom08

    Freedom08 Member

    Thank you all. This is a terrible road to walk but I take comfort in knowing I am not alone.
     
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  15. Tanya M

    Tanya M Living with an attitude of gratitude Staff Member

    You will find great comfort here. I wish I had found this site years ago!! I'm sure I could have saved my self a several years of chaos and emotional pain.
    We are glad you are here.
    :group-hug:
     
  16. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    Hi Lila

    I wanted to say a quick Hi. Your daughter is at the time of life when she is forming her adult identity apart from you. She wants to feel powerful and different vis a vis you and your family. Try to not fuel this.
    Excessive and unnecessary guilt and begging her to come home empower her. As much as you can let her stand alone. She has chosen to leave. Let her.
    None of us do.

    Even though she has left you have the responsibility to be her parent, not her victim. We all do. You will not be an effective parent if you render yourself incapacitated because of your fear, regret, guilt, anger, etc. None of us are.

    For now, let her be.
    The transgender narrative is a powerful one in the nation right now and it seems as if she is milking it. How special if she is betraying her family to further her own ends and to give her story more dramatic appeal.

    My son has done a version of this. To the extent that I let it destroy me, was a mistake. I should not have given it one ounce of thought or one tear. I felt betrayed by him. Actually he betrayed himself.

    I have been posting here for 3 months. While I am agonized about my son I have learned so much about me. Most of all I have learned that I have control over what I do and my home and nothing more. And to the extent that I give my son power over either of those things that are mine, I hurt him. I do not help him.

    My next step is to learn how to separate psychologically so the pain is not so great and so that I can reclaim my life. I will by no means forget about my son. Rather, I am learning to distinguish behaviors and attitudes of my own that are useful and constructive, and those that are not.

    I hope you keep posting.
     
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    Last edited: Jul 13, 2015
  17. Tanya M

    Tanya M Living with an attitude of gratitude Staff Member

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  18. Lil

    Lil Well-Known Member

    I just wanted to quickly say hello. I'm Jabberwockey's wife and he already told you about our 20 year old son. He's far more detached than I am. I can't even imagine how I'd be if I had a daughter instead of a son. In fact, I'd be happier if mine called me less, but that's a long story.

    Everyone here "gets it". Some may be very "together" now...but there was a time in each and every one's life when they just thought the pain would eat them up. There is great wisdom born of conflict and pain here...and comfort for your hurting mommy's heart.
    :group-hug:
     
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  19. Freedom08

    Freedom08 Member

    Powerful words from all of you. I will read and read over and over again. They give me great comfort.

    I'm not sure how I will manage at work tonight. I work from home which is a curse and a blessing. I don't have to hide my tears but if it's not busy my mind wanders. I have turned into a workaholic the last few years putting in 50-55 hours every week but I think the most I can handle right now is 40. My younger son had athletic training today and while he was there I went to Starbucks and got my favorite coffee drink and went for a drive on my favorite scenic road in our city. I can't say I feel better but it was better than staying home.

    I found her tumblr page and I'm very much wishing I had not. She's headed to NYC right now. She was always a gifted writer. Maybe this experience will make her a better writer.
     
  20. Jabberwockey

    Jabberwockey Well-Known Member

    Please PLEASE stay away from her social media. NOTHING good will come of it.
     
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