Surely his demise can't be far away? Sorry, VERY long!

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by blackgnat, May 4, 2015.

  1. blackgnat

    blackgnat Active Member

    Some of you have read my threads about my son in Colorado. I'm not sure if I can get the links to them, if anyone wants to see the backstory...

    He is 26-spent 25th and 26th birthdays in jail. Has been in CO for about 16 months and has spent about 13 of those in jail, just going back and forth, violating probation by drinking and drugging and getting picked up for having dirty drug tests, etc.

    He got out on April 26th-got an incredible deal-has the luck of the devil-got a release, with NO probation, no requirements to check in with mental health or take random drug tests, can leave the state, etc. Amazing. He was willing to go to prison for 1-3 years if the judge gave him no parole. Maybe they just didn't know what the hell to do with him anymore, but he's pretty much a free agent.

    I talked to him in jail a couple of days before his release-he was happy at the idea of getting out, but began to express fears that he would just drink again. I said he didn't have to. He was offered a bed at the homeless shelter upon his release, but was in a bad temper and told the guy "Give it to someone else, I'll be drunk by then". The guy knew he was rattled and came back a few days later with the same offer and this time he took it (I had told him to take it so he had somewhere to sleep-he didn't have to stay there indefinitely, but it was better to have and don't need, than need and don't have).

    He went to his father's apartment when he got out and stayed the night. I had a nice long talk with him and his brother. Difficult Child was full of optimism and plans. Said he was certain he had a job at a car wash.

    Long story short, it was bull. He went to the liquor store the next day, then to stay overnight with a friend. Never took the shelter bed. His exgf's mother took him to a detox facility after he turned up at my ex's apartment a couple of days later (my ex will not let him stay there if he's drinking) and he stayed there overnight. Went back to my ex's upon his release and left early next day, saying that now he was 2 days sober, he could "focus more and make plans". Got paid by the state on May 2nd.

    Today my ex discovers that, two days later, he only has 0.84 cents left of the $200 bucks. He shows up , a little fuzzy this morning, sporting a limp. The limp is because he just walked around all night, wallet in his sock-got blisters. He told exgf's mother (who is always there to help him) that he had gone somewhere else and got on the wrong bus home. So he lied to her about where he had been, but he did confess that he had been using crystal meth.

    My ex dropped him off with a cardboard sign this morning. So now he is out of money, using drugs and I imagine will probably just get enough money to buy some booze. He WILL and has done in the past, prostituted himself for money-he is bisexual.

    My ex just texted me to say "Maybe we are being selfish-he is our son and we want him to be alive, but maybe that's just too much for him to handle." I'm starting to agree-he REALLY WILL NOT HELP HIMSELF.

    The regularity and consistency of his doing this is just absurd. There really is no solution to this problem except to let him die. He will be one of those wretched souls who is filthy, matted, malnourished, etc. rambling and crazy with his substance abuse and mental illness. Maybe beaten and robbed, overdosed, stabbed. The list goes on.

    I think I have come to a place of acceptance but it's like I have no connection to him any more. I think he is empty and has been for a long time. I know these are his choices. Guiltily, as I said in another post, I am so glad he's not around me, that I don't have to witness this horror, because I've been there, done that. But not to this extent, where I feel there is NO HOPE FOR HIM.

    And on one level, I am absolutely dead in the head. Like, when I get the phone call, I don't even know if I will feel anything. If I will even cry. If that makes sense. Have I also become a monster, a shell, soulless? I haven't seen him since last July and was planning a visit when the school year finishes. Is he going to be dead by then and I just have to say, "Yeah, I had a son that I didn't see for a year and then he died"?

    When there's nothing you can do any longer, is that just being cowardly? Have you just thrown in the towel? Become so immune to the madness that you don't give a rat's arse anymore? Because it's just business as usual? How can I live with that? I know the answer...his choices. Did everything I could and nothing helped.

    Thanks for letting me vent and thank you if you've made it this far. Not really sure what I'm asking for, just giving an update to all who have been so kind and supportive on here.

  2. pasajes4

    pasajes4 Well-Known Member

    :group-hug:My mommy heart is breaking. I can not imagine the pain you are feeling. You have done everything you could. That does not make it hurt less. Please come back as often as you feel that you need to vent.
  3. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I remember your story Blackgnat....... and the anguish. I am so sorry. I have no idea what the appropriate thing to do is. He is fighting for his ability to stay stuck and he makes the same choices.......mental illness and substance abuse is a powerful toxic brew for some real negative behaviors.

    You aren't a monster, a shell, souless,a coward or someone who threw the towel in.........what you are is powerless........what you are is burned out on trying to help someone who doesn't want your help............what you are is depleted and exhausted and out of things to try.........what you are is at the end of your appears that there is nothing left to do........he is an adult..........realistically what can you do? Even if you bring him home, the pull of the need for the alcohol will bring him to the next poor choice. You don't get to choose where his life is going. Only he does.

    When I am faced with those voices in my head spinning around crazily trying to come up with options for saving another, what has worked for me is to pray and to let go and to put that person in the hands of what my perception of a higher power is........I don't have that kind of power to save another.........don't blame yourself, you didn't do anything wrong. It isn't about you. It's about your son.

    Repeat the serenity prayer:

    God grant me the serenity
    To accept the things I cannot change;
    Courage to change the things I can;
    And wisdom to know the difference.

    Sending a big hug Blackgnat........
  4. Kathy813

    Kathy813 Well-Known Member Staff Member

    blackgnat, I am so sorry that you are going through this. I understand, though. You are not soulless . . . just reached the point where you truly understand that there is nothing more that you can do. You can't help someone that doesn't want to change.

    I remember when your Difficult Child first went to Colorado and you lined up so many services for him. He walked away from all of it. At that point, what can you do?

    So you have set boundaries and gone on with your life. That doesn't make you a monster. It makes you pragmatic and unwilling to be sucked down into his life choices.

    I get it. We all do.

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  5. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Hon, you have done EVERYTHING one can possibly do to help an adult child. You went to CO with him, set him up with services, and his father will give him a bed if he will not drink and now he is using drugs. What else CAN you do? What can ANYONE do?

    If you have not been going to an Al-Anon meeting, I highly suggest it. There is a feeling of companionship there that I couldn't find anywhere else. If you don't like Al-Anon, please seek help for yourself elsewhere because the numbness will wear off and you need to learn coping skills.

    This story is very sad. It caused me to tear up. I can't imagine...but I can feel your heart...and your numbness that is protecting you from the pain and I'm glad you are being protected for now.

    Try to just live in the moment. Right now he is not in a good place, but he is still alive. Nobody knows the future.

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  6. Sherril2000

    Sherril2000 Active Member

    I'm so very sorry for your pain and the heartache this is causing you. My son got out of jail, & went back in 8 days later for 4 counts of armed robbery. I know the sadness and worry all this causes. I know you hurt for him when he's locked up. But, at least then we know know where they are. My heart breaks for you. I know you have done everything you can, & still nothing helps. I'm praying for you and your son. May the Lord keep him safe, & give you peace and strength.
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  7. Tanya M

    Tanya M Living with an attitude of gratitude Staff Member

    Blackgnat, Your story sounds very familiar to me because it mirrors so closely to my son, right down to him being in CO.

    You are not a horrible monster you are simply a mother who's heart has been broken into a million little pieces by her child. You are numb. I have been there. You get to a point that you are just so tired, so drained emotionally that you have nothing left, you are just numb. It's not that you don't love your son you just have been drained.

    My son has been in and out of jail/prison more times than I care to count. He likes his drugs and alcohol and has no use for authority let alone having a job. He has two beautiful children that he has abandoned. He is homeless / couch surfs. It's been 2 months since I have heard anything from him, which is not unusual. It does however make me wonder if "this is it" is this the time that he died somewhere and I may never know. I have dealt with these types of feelings for closer to 5 years now.

    I have come to acceptance that I may never hear from my son again, that he could have died and I may never know. This is my truth, this is what I have had to come to accept. It hurts, my heart aches for the child I used to have.

    Over the years my husband and I have afforded our son so many "second" chances. We have tried to help him in everyway we could but in the end we had to accept that our son did not want our help, he only wanted our money, he only wanted us to keep enabling him.
    He does not want to make the changes that we think he should. He wants to live his life on his terms, he's 33 years old, he's not a child so I have had to accept the choices he makes, the way he wants to live his life, I have to let it go.

    I really do understand what you are feeling. I'm so sorry for your heartbreak. I'm glad you reached out and shared.

    Sending you ((HUGS)) and hoping that you will be able to find some peace. You deserve to have some peace.
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  8. blackgnat

    blackgnat Active Member

    Thank you all so much for all the supportive words-I know that this is the only place I can come to where people understand my situation completely and do not judge ...
  9. blackgnat

    blackgnat Active Member

    I wonder what you think of something that I'm kind of woolly about?

    My ex has a camper van that is very old, but it still runs, has a fridge, sink, place to plug in electricity etc. He is willing to let Difficult Child live in it, as long as he gets his CO license, pays for insurance, a place to park it (probably in a campground which Difficult Child has researched and is nearby, for just $70 a year) and pay for the title.
    They talked a lot about this while Difficult Child was in jail and while ex and I had our doubts, Difficult Child was very enthusiastic about it.

    Now, as there have been no attempts by Difficult Child to look into any of this, the ex has withdrawn the offer, at least until he is willing to get his license, as a show of good faith that he'd be willing to take care of the van. Difficult Child is royally pissed off that ex is going back on his word-HIS understanding was that ex would let Difficult Child crash in the van.

    As the soft touch, I wish that ex would just let Difficult Child sleep there, or when it's raining, or when he feels unsafe about sleeping rough. I don't think he needs to be able to drive it if it's parked in a campground. But at the same time, I feel that Difficult Child would probably just stay in it all day, probably drinking and drugging, reading, listening to music, etc. The premise was that Difficult Child would get a job and sleep in the van at night. For my own peace of mind, I'd rather know Difficult Child was in the van and not wandering around.

    I do respect my ex's boundaries, but I just wish he would soften a bit about this. Why couldn't they have an arrangement where Difficult Child would only get the keys at a certain time of night and give them to his dad when he left for work in the morning? Difficult Child went to his father's apartment last night to change jackets because it was raining and I thought, "Just let him sleep in the van, for God's sake".

    Ex says this kind of privilege must be earned and I agree, but exgf's mother feels that Difficult Child has NO coping skills and is lost-to the extent that he wants to come back to Illinois because he doesn't want to be by himself. That's NOT going to happen, by the way-there is NOTHING here for him and NOTHING I can do for him...Plus I am thinking of moving to CO-I really would like access to my younger son-and Difficult Child, on a VERY limited basis. If he is still around...

    Do you all smell a rat? Am I in total denial? I think I already know the answer, but would appreciate any input.
  10. Childofmine

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

    Blackgnat, welcome back to the forum! I am glad to see you. More later, but I just wanted to say, referencing your post above, that I would work to let go of what ex decides to do and how he does it.

    I know you would feel so much better if ex would just bend on this. I so get that.

    I have an ex too, and he and I were kind of on the same page with difficult child but still very different in how we went about things. I would wish desperately for him to relax or get tougher or any manner of I didn't have to do it...whatever it was...and so I could feel better.

    Many times he allowed difficult child to live with him...way after I kicked difficult child out and said no more, when I wished he wouldn't. I felt he enabled difficult child for a long long long time, way longer than I wanted him to.

    But I had to accept...finally...that it was none of my business the boundaries he set or didn't set with our son.

    We get it when we get it, and as you know, BG, we go back and forth for so long with our decision-making because this is really really hard stuff.

    It sounds like your ex told your son what he needs to do to be able to use the RV. And to me, those requirements do not sound unreasonable.

    If you can, just let that go. Your son knows the rules and knows what he needs to do to get access to the RV. If he chooses not to do those things, then that is what he chooses.

    At some point, we have to stop bending all the time with our difficult children. It isn't good for us or for them.

    I used to ask myself this question: Is what I am asking reasonable? That was my go-to litmus test for myself.

    It sounds like to me that the situation as presented is reasonable. Remember, it's our difficult children that aren't reasonable, 99 percent of the time, not your ex, not you.

    Let it go, let it go, let it go....that song from Frozen...if you can. I know it's hard when you're scared for him.

    Hugs to you.
  11. Tanya M

    Tanya M Living with an attitude of gratitude Staff Member

    Your ex made a very generous offer but there were conditons attached. Ex was not out of line asking for Difficult Child to get his licence and pay for insurance. I do not blame him for withdrawing the offer. Difficult Child's reaction of being mad is very typical in that they expect others to take care of them and do not understand why they are asked to bear some responsibility. When you give them anything they will not take care of it and when they destroy it the will expect more, at least that's how it's been with my son.

    Even if your ex just gave him the van it will solve nothing for your son other than giving him a place to crash. I understand what that means for you, it will offer you some peace of mind but in the end nothing has really changed.

    My son is also in CO and I got a desperate message from him one night telling me he was going to freeze to death. I live in the Midwest now and even if I still lived in CO there would be nothing I could do. My son managed to find a place to sleep for the night and the nights there after.
    I have suggested he go to a shelter, he will have nothing to do with them as they have rules, no drugs and they have a curfew.

    I had to make a choice to let it go. I cannot allow worrying about my son to consume my life. My son has made his choice to live his life the way he wants and nothing I do will change that.

    I really do hope you will be able to let go. It's not good for you to worry about him. Worrying does nothing, it changes nothing.

    ((HUGS)) to you....................
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  12. blackgnat

    blackgnat Active Member

    Just got a text from my ex, " He smashed a window out in the van and looks like he spent the night there. WTF!!! He smashed the window out. Shattered glass everywhere. Passenger side glass gone. I'm very sad/enraged. Just saw it 10 mins ago. Police report?"

    I said yes. He must have been on something to do such a destructive and disrespectful thing. He has finally lost his marbles...maybe he is TRYING to get arrested so he can go back to the safety of jail?
  13. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Drugs lead to bad decisions. That was an "in-your-face-haha" smack at Dad, not smart when you are asking for help. Much better to act mature than like a child. Now he has burned another bridge.

    I am so sorry for your hurting heart.
  14. Childofmine

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

    Oh, BG, I am sorry. It's more likely that he saw something he wanted, and decided to just take it.

    That's what they do.

    I am glad you told your ex to do what he needs to do.

    Society tells our difficult children, when we do not and cannot, what is unacceptable. I think that is a good thing, and we have to let go of it then, as it is out of our control.

    Breaking into property that isn't yours is serious. Even if it's your dad's.

    But I am still sorry.
  15. blackgnat

    blackgnat Active Member

    I'm really in quite a bit of shock that he would do this-he and his dad seemed to be mending fences, but there he goes again, peeing all over the boundaries.

    That bus is like my ex's baby-it's a 1971 VW bus, bought in Germany, driven lovingly in Spain (for 5 years) and shipped to the USA when my ex returned here. It's like a family heirloom. Unreal.
  16. Tanya M

    Tanya M Living with an attitude of gratitude Staff Member

    Well I hate to say it but it doesn't surprise me. This is exactly the type of thing I was referring to in my previous post.

    Now that he has broken into the van it would not surprise me at all if he still thinks he should be allowed to stay in it.

    It's good you told your ex to file a police report.

    I am so sorry this happened. I know all too well that feeling of being violated like that. My son would break into our house and ransack it looking for money.

    Again, there is no help you can offer your son. Until he decides for himself that he needs to make better choices nothing will change.

    ((HUGS)) to you......................
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  17. Kathy813

    Kathy813 Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I can tell you just what your Difficult Child was thinking . . .

    "They told me I could stay here so I am entitled to stay here. I'll show them. Wait . . . you called the police?? Why?? All I did was stay in the van. You told me that I could. You hate me. Why won't you help me? "

    It is exactly how my Difficult Child thinks and acts.

  18. blackgnat

    blackgnat Active Member

    And he's back in County Jail...
  19. hopeandjoy66

    hopeandjoy66 Member

    I am so sorry to hear that. The circle continues.
  20. Tanya M

    Tanya M Living with an attitude of gratitude Staff Member

    Well at least now you know where he is and he will be forced to stay sober. As sad as it is, I always felt some relief when my son was locked up, I knew where he was and that he wasn't drinking and drugging.

    We are here for you Blackgnat.

    Sending you ((HUGS))...........