Struggling with my decision

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by dashcat, Apr 26, 2013.

  1. dashcat

    dashcat Member

    You know that saying that you'd better watch what you wish for? Ain't it the truth! I know that difficult child continuing to live here wasn't good for me .. and it probably wasn't good for her, either, in the long run... but I am struggling mightily with the consequences of having told her to leave.

    She's pretty much moved out and it will only be a matter of a few days before I change the locks and begin to regain some of the peace I had here once upon a time. But there's a price.

    I'm beginning to see her new situation for what it really is. She isn't renting a room from this guy. She isn't babysitting in exchange for board, either. The reality is that she has moved in with a virtual stranger. Whether or not this guy is "ok" is really beside the point. The point is that she is that impulsive. When faced with having to leave here, she saw this as her best alternative. What will do when (and I do mean when) this falls apart? The only things left in her room are her bed and a couple piles of clothing. She took every phothograph, her box containing all the cards and letters she received when she would go on church retreats, her adoption scrapbook I made her and she has moved them all into a stranger's basement.

    She spent the night here last night and I'm pretty sure that she will be leaving tonight after work for good. I thought I was scared when she was here, but it doesn't compare to how scared I am right now for her.

  2. SuZir

    SuZir Well-Known Member

    Have you offered her the box to keep some of her things in your home? Because, "I understand you have not room for everything in your new room and if there are things you don't need but want to saviour, I could keep a box here for you." And offer to help her have certified copies of any paperwork she really needs and safe keep those (or original and give copies with her.)

    Telling her to move was likely best for both of you. Even when her decisions are impulsive and immature. And yes, this first living situation will not last, but she will find another one and she will learn. Slowly. It will be bumpy, but she is smart and she is capable to working and does work, she has very good chance to make it. But yeah, she will likely leave her stuff behind more than once first, so helping to keep things safe would be a big help for her. (Even though she probably doesn't see it like that right now.)
  3. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Oh Boy Dash, I so hear you. Each step of their remarkable life of bad choices is yet another step for us to let go........sigh.......and the worry and fear is right there stuck in your chest and stomach................I know.

    I can't dispense of that fear for you, but I can tell you that with each step, as you get used to it a little, as she moves through it a little, you can breathe and let go a little. Over time, you adapt, amazingly, and get used to her living in these strange circumstances with these odd characters that reside in the land of gfgdom. She will likely move again, and again, and maybe again, as the reality becomes clear and connections break apart. I don't know how they do it, but somehow they always find somewhere to land.

    I hope she learns something and finds that this is unacceptable and that she becomes willing to get help and change. Our fears for their safety are profound, I hear you........... all I can tell you to do is to pray, surround her with your love, repeat the serenity prayer, go to one of your groups, keep breathing................ this too shall pass. Sending you so many warm, caring wishes and many gentle hugs..............
  4. dashcat

    dashcat Member

    Thank you. It's so hard. RE, I pray that it does get a little easier. Right now, if I could turn back time, I would take it all back. I know that isn't the answer, but it's where I am at this moment. I'm going to go out in the yard and work furiously in hopes that I can harness this grief. I don't want her to see me upset. Suz, I can try, but I don't think she'll bring the stuff back. I might be able to get her to bring back the adoptions scrapbook so I can scan it at least. I know I really need to let go of this, though. If the things are not sentimental to her I can't protect them. I can't protect her,, either.
  5. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Oh man I recall thinking that exact same thing, turn the clock back and say something different that has a different ending.........yikes...........we all go through so many of the same awful feelings.................yes Dash, it is SO HARD, as I've said here a hundred times, it is the hardest thing I have even done.................and yet here I am, sometimes I am just amazed that I lived through that 18 months of letting go.................Good Lord, no one should have to go there, but here we are...................just breathe through your day, work in the garden, work hard, get support, have a glass of wine, go to dinner with a good buddy, geez, focus on you, on what will make you happy, what nourishes you, what feeds your soul and your spirit, what just feels good to do.................and do it all......................much love to you Dash............
  6. Dash - Oh do I know how you feel right now. Asking our difficult child (16 at the time) to leave was the hardest thing I've ever done. It was also the most surreal. I couldn't believe I had done it, couldn't believe I'd had to do it, couldn't believe he forced our hand so we had no choice. It was so awful. And when he ended up homeless in December, sometimes staying in a shelter and sometimes staying in an ATM vestibule I just about caved in. I kind of did, really. I told difficult child that if he felt he could follow our rules he could move back home. He just smiled and said he liked the ATM vestibule - it had a great heater and he was toasty warm. Sigh. That is difficult child thinking.

    RE is right - your difficult child will probably be much like the rest of ours - she'll land on her feet despite making more than one bad decision. And RE is right about there always being someone willing to hear their sob story and rescue them. difficult child is on home #3 since November. Well, I guess it's #2 because the people that kicked him out in December have now taken him back in after he got kicked out of his second place - so he's bouncing around.

    Hang in there - this strange situation will get easier for you to handle as time goes on. Hugs
  7. Calamity Jane

    Calamity Jane Well-Known Member

    It's hard when they're adopted difficult child's, because any attempt at reasonable boundary and expectation setting on our part looks like repeated rejection to them. The sad thing is *when* she is asked to leave this guy's house in the future, she will encounter that rejection again. And so it goes, until she faces her issues and tries to help herself. The only other option I see is that you let her stay there and live the lifestyle she wants. I know that's impossible.
    Somehow, I always found brutal decisions pertaining to difficult child easier to handle if I revisited my anger over something he did that was beyond the beyond, Know what I mean?? It's not Christian, or my nature to hold onto grievances, but if I'd let them bubble up, boy could I grow a strong backbone and see through difficult decisions. It's juvenile, I know, but for example, if you recall the "stone cold stare of death" she gave you several weeks ago that stopped you in your tracks, it may help you today - I don't know? It was a coping mechanism for me, that's for sure.
    What we want is for them to be self aware, self sufficient and functional. That will take a lot of time and help, but first the recognition that they need help and they need to change, in a good way. I hope this move, as difficult as it is, leads her on that path, Dash. <<<Hugs>>>
  8. elizabrary

    elizabrary Member

    Hi Dash- I haven't been on here in forever, not sure why I popped in today. At any rate, so sorry you are going through this. If you remember I have been through very similar stuff with-my daughter. What I want to say to you is I am a much healthier, happier me when she is not living in my home. I let Kat come back last summer after she checked herself into the psychiatric ward, hoping it would provide the boost she needs to get herself straightened out. It did not. I do not believe she will ever live what I consider a normal life, or at least not for many years. This is doubly difficult because she has my sweet granddaughter. When she is not up in my face daily I am able to detach again and focus on me. I am able to set and keep boundaries with her. I am able to hang up the phone when she acts crazy and not answer when she calls back. I am much, much, much happier when she is not in my home.

    That being said, I do worry about her and my granddaughter. I have some nights when I don't sleep well, and I probably always will. But overall I am emotionally, physically, spiritually better without her in my home. I'm not on here much because when I start spending lots of time here I get sucked back down into a negative space where I focus on Kat and her drama. It's not worth it. I'm sorry you are going through this because I know how hard it is. But once you get over the initial shock and learn to focus on your life and what makes you happy I know you will be in a better place. Sending you positive energy and hoping for the best for you.
  9. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    Hello Eliza! Nice to see you. :) ((hugs))

    That is the difference with a difficult child. We can clearly see the choices we make have consequences both good and bad. Most difficult children struggle with that........and many just plan don't see it at all.

    You're still learning to accept her choices are her choices. That isn't so easy when they're not safe choices.

    Katie does this sort of thing. It would drive me nuts if I allowed it to do so. I will admit it does tick me off. She, as far as I know, hasn't made any unsafe choices recently......other than allowing Kayla to spend the night places where she has no clue about the parents (irks me). I don't fool myself that she suddenly learned. I just try hard not to ask questions that will give me answers I really don't want to hear these days.

  10. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    Just sending a caring hug your way. So sorry you are facing such stress, Dash. DDD
  11. dashcat

    dashcat Member

    Thank you for the support and affirmations. Eliza, it is nice to hear from you again ...and I do remember your situation. To all of you who have promised me serenity when the dust settles here, please know that I am clinging to your words. The last two days have been especially difficult. I am used to seeing her daily and she has not returned my texts since Sunday (I KNOW it's only Tuesday, but I am used to more contact and I miss her.) I am not persisting in texting her. I am giving her the space I know she needs. For those who have reminded me for my reasons for doing this, I am grateful. It is easy to get caught in the vortex of grief and forget why you are there. For those who sent hugs, I have felt every one.
  12. scent of cedar

    scent of cedar New Member

    Dash, it is so hard. My heart goes out to you, to think of you trying to plan work hard enough to get you through today's pain.

    But here's the thing: For your daughter's own sake, she needed to make changes in her life, and in the way she sees herself in her life.

    This is the opportunity you provided for her by bringing things into the open. That was your ultimate intent. Hard as it is when everything seems to be caving in on us, we need to remember that our intent was to cure, to heal, to change the path of a child going the wrong way.

    Knowing what you do, it would have been irresponsible of you to have done nothing, to have allowed things to continue as they were.

    That our difficult children make such horrendously unanticipated choices EVERY DARN TIME is something we can never prepare ourselves for. What they do always seems to come from some weird, left-field place we never even considered. Though WE know that isn't what we meant to happen when we set a limit or imposed a consequence, those darn difficult children seem to take everything we intended for them, turn it around until it's unrecognizable, and run it right into a brick wall. Maybe they do it to punish us? Can they really be so naive? How can it be that nothing we raised them to believe in stuck?

    In any event Dash, you made the correct choice in forcing difficult child to take responsibility for herself. We always forget how really bad it was before we thought up a way to help the difficult child make the changes she needed to. You did nothing wrong, Dash. Your intent was to do the right thing for difficult child. She has taken it to a bad place. Unless she comes to you with a changed attitude or a different plan, there is nothing more you can do.

    Sometimes Dash, it's about survival.

    Our own.

    Make a conscious effort Dash, to take good care of yourself during this time. It is in our natures to punish ourselves if we haven't addressed and magically resolved the problems our difficult children bring us.

  13. busywend

    busywend Well-Known Member Staff Member

    The hardest parenting choices often have the biggest impact in a difficult children life. We pay the price so they have a better life.