Please stop this ride...I want to get off!

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by JKF, Oct 19, 2012.

  1. JKF

    JKF Well-Known Member

    Oh boy! What a morning! difficult child had his treatment team meeting yesterday so I called the group home to ask how it went. I was immediately informed that as of this morning difficult child has decided to sign himself out of the home, stop all medications, and go live at the homeless shelter. WHAT??? When I called, difficult child was in the process of packing and waiting for the police to get there and give him a ride to the shelter. That was totally NOT what I was expecting to hear! I asked to speak to difficult child and asked why he was doing this. He told me that he hates it there and being homeless would be better. He then proceeded to hang up on me. I called back, spoke to the director (actually sobbed to the director) and he told me to sit tight and that hopefully when the police got there they could talk difficult child out of going.

    Anyway, a short while later difficult child called and said he was staying at the group home but that he has nothing to live for if he can't come home. "Why bother" is his attitude. His psychiatrist has been after him to start a mood stabilizer but he absolutely 100% refuses. They can't force him because he's 18. I asked him why he's not willing to give it a try and he said because he doesn't want to and it won't help anyway! Wth?? He won't know if it works or not if he doesn't try!! It's so hard with him because even though he's 18 he has the mentality of maybe a 13 year old. I just don't know how to get through to him and sadly no one else can get through to him either!

    So now here we are at an absolute stalemate. My husband and I REFUSE to allow difficult child to set foot in our house if he's not stable and he refuses to try to get better because we won't let him come home.

    I am so tired, so worn out, so done with this emotional roller coaster! I was doing such a good job at detaching for a while but when things like this happen it drags me right back in! I am at work and was a sobbing mess earlier when I found out he was leaving. I'm so embarrassed that I actually cried like that here at work. Fortunately my boss and co-worker are amazing and they understand completely but I'm still really bothered by it.
  2. CrazyinVA

    CrazyinVA Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Oh man, I'm sorry. What a rollercoaster, indeed.

    I really think, though, that this may mean he's getting to a turning point -- you are standing firm, he's pushing those boundaries, and learning that you're standing tough, regardless. He's flailing about, pushing every button he can think of. You are doing the absolute right thing in not letting him come home. Detach as best you can and let the treatment team handle it -- they sound like they are on the ball here. I'm sure they've seen this many times. Breathe in, breathe out -- you'll get through this dip in the coaster, too.

  3. JKF

    JKF Well-Known Member

    Thank you so much! It's so hard (exhausting may be a better word) to stand firm but I have definitely been doing it and I will continue to do so. He is most definitely trying anything he can think of to make me cave. I'm tired of the drama and it starts EVERY Friday and tapers off mid week. The weekends are the WORST because he has no structured activities and there is a different staff there over the weekend. The treatment team there is fantastic though. There's only so much they can do but they are good at trying! The director was so nice as I apologized profusely for sobbing! He said they are there for a reason and if it makes me feel better to cry, then please, by all means, cry!!! Such a NICE guy! Breathing helps too!!! Thanks for the reminder!!!
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2012
  4. slsh

    slsh member since 1999

    This was my boy, to a T. Gosh, I had forgotten about that particular merry-go-round from Hades until I read this. It's an impossible conversation to have, though we tried about a gazillion times:

    Us: thank you, you can come home when you show us you can comply with rules.
    thank you: I'm not following any *($&%* rules until you let me come home.

    Later, rinse, repeat, ad nauseum.

    Every time we had this conversation, it ended up with him blaming *us* for him not living at home. For a while, I have to admit that I kinda let him lay that guilt on me, but then the light bulb went off. Bottom line, he knew what the criteria was to come home. It was what it was and that was it. If he didn't want to work the program, not a darn thing we could do about it, but I sure as *heck* was not going to be guilted about it by him, and I was not going to go back to living the way we had been living when he was here before. Told him that straight out. Next phase was an enjoyable 1-1/2 years of him not trying to do squat, lots of verbal abuse and hang ups, and eventually him losing funding (but let's face it, it's not like he was working the program in the slightest) and couch surfing/who knows what for the next 2 years.

    I do think that one thing that made it easier (cough - it's all relative, 'cuz those years were *not* easy by any stretch of the imagination) was that he did have his "family" - various street kids and difficult child's (both from his program and ones he found on his own) - that he was extremely attached to. That social connection did give me a bit of assurance about his .... well, I can't even say physical safety because I know they were drugging it up big time, but at least I didn't worry about him intentionally hurting himself. Unintentionally, absolutely, but... it's the nature of the beast.

    It's not fun, and he will try to keep you on the ride. For me, after a lot of repeating that he needed to work the program to come home and if he chose not to, that was *his* choice and not my problem, I did get a little bit of a sense of peace. A little bit. Terrifying when he left the program for who knows where, but he did survive that period of time *and* he did eventually come around.

    Hang in there. I'm so sorry - my heart aches for you because I really do remember what an awful period of time this phase was.
  5. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Oh boy JKF, you are on quite the ride! I am so sorry, it's a tough one, but I think CrazyinVa is absolutely right, he is testing you and you're doing a wonderful job of meeting those tests with all the right responses. Not to say it's easy, or that your emotional responses are anything but appropriate under the circumstances.

    Keep taking those deep breaths, recognize that you are doing the very best you can under extraordinarily challenging circumstances, that others are not judging your reactions they are being supportive of you, your son is in very good hands, and right now in this moment, all is okay. You got through the crisis and for many of us, that is a triumph to celebrate. Do something sweet and kind and nurturing for yourself, these episodes are so trying on our vulnerable Mother hearts, you did a good job, now just let go, breath and make every attempt to enjoy your day...................(((HUGS)))
  6. buddy

    buddy New Member

    Sending a shoulder (covered in lots of soft cloths) for you to cry on. Go ahead and let it out. Though for different reasons, I am on a dip too and some moments lately feel like just jumping off the ride. I'm so glad the director supported you and difficult child too. Praying he is willing to take medications at some point. Is he really competent to make medication decisions on his own? I know that is a really tricky area. Just so sorry about all this.....
  7. dashcat

    dashcat Member

    You are doing a great job holding your ground. What happened to you this morning would tax anyone to the limit. Good for you for hanging in there. We are all pulling for you.
  8. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    Just sending very sincerely caring hugs your way. I'm old as the hills and I still just don't get it. Sorry. DDD
  9. BKS

    BKS New Member


    I think you ABSOLUTELY did the right thing by standing your ground. Your son will be more secure knowing your limits/boundaries and that you are not budging. We are working with a therapist who specializes in helping kids "launch" from their home and he has emphasized this with us, recommending that we be as bland as we can be in our responses to our son (which is really tough for us because he seems to go out of his way to be as insulting and hurtful as possible.) We just do the best we can. We asked our son to leave a week ago today and each day has its own challenge. I am learning some days are better than others.

    I feel for the pain you are in and am sorry you have to go through it. Remember you are not alone. We here on the board are here for you 24/7.

  10. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    It's only a stalemate in difficult child's mind.
    He doesn't process the part that says "if he's not stable".

    So, he hears "you can't come home. period. under any and all conditions"...
    And THAT doesn't "help" him move forward.
    (Note: YOU didn't do or say thing wrong, it's his thinking)

    Sometimes - I have to do this for husband with difficult child - it helps to rephrase the statement from negative to postive. From "you can't ... until" to "when you ... you can ....". Unless there are no circumstances at all, ever, under which you would let him "come home", it might help to paint the "how to come home" picture.
  11. cher

    cher New Member

    I am new here as well, your story sounds so familiar the only thing is never held my ground and 12 yrs later I am dealing with the same thing my difficult child is 29 and is still having us on the ride only worse he is an angry man. I wish I could had the courage to bring change instead of just wishing Stand your ground because if you don't it will get worse. I have bailed my son out 2 this year and he is sitting in jail now. I will not bail him out and risk my home and I mean have to put my home up for bail. I applaud your courage, (((hugs))). I feel your pain.