The waiting game

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by Paighton, Oct 11, 2013.

  1. Paighton

    Paighton New Member

    My son who I will call GTG just turned 19 recently. He's been threatening suicide, so was hospitalized twice in the last 3 weeks. He lives with my ex - he was given a choice to move with me when I moved out of our home town with my job almost 5 years ago and chose to stay with Dad where he had his life long friends. His older sister also stayed as she was almost done high school. Well, over the years, Dad taught both of my kids it was ok to lie to me. I was told my son was doing well, going to school, he had NOT been going to school at all so it wasn't until he was about to quit that I found out what was really going on when I called his school due to the run around my ex was giving me. After trying to intervene and failing, he quit school at the age of 17 and with a grade 9 education. Then I was told he was getting along with my exes new live in girlfriend. Two years after she moves in, both our children dislike her and even I have issues with her after stepping on my toes (not literally - but as a Mom) during my daughters first surgery when she was 19. GTG told me that she is the wedge between him and Dad, that he regretted not leaving with me and she was making Dad choose between them.

    GTG hasn't had much luck finding work and it's almost like the world owes him a living. Dad says he has anger issues but I personally haven't seen them. He has no ability to care about anything it seems. He "just doesn't care" He was a cutter but stopped a year ago, the scars are visible. He sleeps all day and stays up most of the night. He smokes pot but his friends assure me that is all. He also has reoccurring headaches and stomachaches. Dad kicked GTG out recently so myself, and our daughter had a day and a half of threatening text messages with him saying goodbye to me several times. First day I had the police track him down by pinging his cell, he lied to the police so they took him to a teen mental health center that let him out the next day. He threatened suicide again immediately, more threats. Again he was picked up when I called the police and spent 3 forced days on the psychiatric floor where he refused all help and told me he was planning on killing himself as soon as he could get free. His nurses told me he mentioned a teacher in his past but wouldn't elaborate what had happened. He had a teacher that was convicted of child pornography the year he taught our son. His Dad and he talked I guess with a social worker at the hospital so Dad went and picked him up when his 72 hour hold was over. They argued and Dad kicked him out of his car on the way home... Threats started again. I finally convinced him to walk home and his sister heard him crying outside so they let him back in. He said he needed help and would take it. Dad said he hadn't cried in years.

    All was well for a week, he talked to the family Doctor about seeing a psychiatrist, took a job, then earlier this week GTG claims he was in the bathroom with a stomachache so Dad left without giving him a ride to work and he'd been fired. (GTG got a temp job where Dad also works but it is 30 min drive away.) GTG stuck something metal in a socket later that day and blew a breaker, police were called again where they told Dad's common law they shouldn't have let him back in to begin with. They let GTG storm out and again, a text saying goodbye arrived. I had just seen him the day before for a hug and a talk and told him the stress was killing me and he had to accept help and get himself together. He knows only he can help himself. Clear as mud yet? So after the socket incident he stayed at a friends 1 night (she sent me a facebook message) and the next night, he went back to the hospital for help. The first day he spent in the emergency ward due to lack of a bed for the floor he needed. I called last night to check on him or speak to him and they said he'd been discharged. I have no idea where he is, no one has heard from him as far as I know. His cell is dead and his charger is at his Dads. Dad said "I DON'T CARE" when I told him he was gone.

    The hardest part for me is ....knowing that I can't fix this... wishing I had forced him to move with me when he was almost 15 and I left for reasons beyond my control..... that he is my miracle baby, I was in 2 car accidents during his pregnancy.... that he hurt his relationship with my fiance of 5 years so rarely ever visited me during the last 3 years.... knowing my fiance would move out rather then watch me "being tortured" as he puts it, believing my son is just lazy and spoiled....... he is my youngest child.... I am used to taking these calls and helping people (911) not making them! It's tearing me up inside. My world feels out of control and the walls closing in. As of right now, my 19 year old child is homeless and Mom has a broken heart.
  2. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    Just want you to know that I have read your post and I am truly sorry. The situation is entirely different from mine but there are "some" similarities....particularly not being able to intervene when you believe it is in the best interest of your child. Tonight is a "sleepy" night for me so I will say no more but want you to know that I, in part, understand the source of your frustration and the frustration of not being able to at least "try" to do some problem solving. Hugs DDD
  3. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    I'm kind of tired too, but I want to add that I feel your pain, but you can't do anything to help your son. Only one person can fix him at his age and that is him. It's not on your ex or his fault or ex's girlfriend's fault and it's not your fault. He is what he is and he is making the choice not to get help. Whether he is just smoking pot or doing stronger drugs, I'm not sure, in spite of his friends telling you it's just pot. They are really going to tell you??? Also, pot can be laced with other stuff these days and some people have a very bad reaction to pot, the "innocent" drug. The fact that your son sleeps all day makes me think he is taking something to make himself that tired. My daughter did that when she used drugs.

    Will get back to you at a better time. Welcome to the board, but so sorry you had to join us.
  4. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Paighton, welcome. I am so sorry for the issues you are dealing with with your son. I certainly understand your heartbreak and worry.

    Since I have been in this world of adult kids who present us parents with these dramatic episodes, I have learned that the best first step in negotiating this territory is for US to get as much support as we can. Your son may have been molested and certainly has issues and unfortunately at his age, you can do little until he is ready to receive help. Your guilt over not taking him when he was younger is a normal response, however in the long run, that same guilt usually keeps us stuck in enabling our kids.

    NAMI which is the National Alliance on Mental Illness is a wonderful resource which can provide you with support for YOU and your fiance as well as give you resources for your son. They can be accessed online, they have chapters all over and offer terrific courses for parents.

    In order to be able to cope with all that is happening to your son and find a way to live your life as this all transpires, it becomes necessary, in my experience and in my opinion, to get as much support for yourself as possible. This is a treacherous landscape and most of us parents are ill equipped to negotiate it without support. Professional support through NAMI, or a therapist or a support group specifically for parents of kids with mental illness will make a HUGE difference in not only how you travel through this, but how you can find some peace in the midst of all of it as well as give you the best options for how to deal with your son.

    The most difficult part of this is the utter powerlessness we feel. The guilt, fear, anger, sorrow, disappointment, resentment and lack of control is like a tsunami of epic proportions which can take over our it becomes absolutely necessary for us to build our strength, find our own support system to learn how to ride this wave effectively and to find our own joy, our balance and our peace of mind.

    Each day make an attempt to do something kind for yourself. Keep yourself well supported. Continue to post here and receive not only support from us, but empathy because we have been there. Do everything you can for YOU and that will be the best possible help you can provide for your son because you will make much better choices for everyone concerned when you are well supported and have the internal strength, balance and courage necessary. Wishing you peace.
  5. tryagain

    tryagain Active Member

    Sending hugs....(((PAIGHTON))) I so understand. My 20 year old daughter breaks my heart on a regular basis.
  6. Paighton

    Paighton New Member

    GTG signed himself back into a hospital but only stayed about 30 hours then signed himself out. I have text him since but he has not responded yet. All my ex can seem to reply is "I don't care". I think there are better words he could use when speaking to me as he was the biggest enabler for our son. He allowed him to quit school, he allowed him to smoke pot in his garage, he allowed him to sleep his days away. That is why he chose to stay where he was. He knew I had rules. Part of me wants to drive to his city and force him to come home with me. That won't solve any of his problems and I fear it would just enable him even more, besides the fact my relationship would be over if I did that. I hate this!
  7. Paighton

    Paighton New Member

    Thank you so much for taking the time to support me. I am thankful I found this site.
  8. Paighton

    Paighton New Member

    @recoveringenabler I looked up NAMI, they are for Americans, I'll have to look for something in Canada. Thanks though.
  9. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I hate it too. Yet, here we are. My daughter's Dad said "I wash my hands of her." So, I do understand how you feel, on many levels. Yes, I agree to leave him where he is, bringing him to your home won't solve anything.

    Right now you're powerless. And, yes I know just how crummy that feels. Do something kind for yourself today. Get yourself some support. Hopefully there is something like NAMI where you live, there are a few Canadians on this site who may give you some leads. Find some way to comfort yourself, get support, this stuff is hard. Focus on you. Go have your nails done, or take a walk, any shift of focus, no matter how small, will help you. Sending hugs and warm wishes for peace............
  10. accmama

    accmama Guest

    You are not alone. I am so sorry. My own daughter is exhausting me today so I can barely come up with a decent thing to say, but I'll be thinking of you.
  11. Paighton

    Paighton New Member

    I posted a reply earlier and it said it needed approval. My next post however went immediately so not sure if my first one got stuck in cyber space.

    I looked into NAMI. It is for the United States. We live in Canada. I have an employee assistance program thru my work that I can get counseling with. I am a 911 dispatcher so there has been a time or two that I need to use the service for work related issues. They respond very quickly. I have spoken to both the teen mental health center he went to and to the hospital that held him on a 72 hour psychiatric form, they both said the same thing. He is refusing all help so until he agrees, there is nothing that can be done. I am holding out hope he will respond to my text messages and meet me this coming weekend. I won't offer him solutions but will again reinforce that I love him, and will help him get the help he needs if he wants it. I can't fix it, I've told him that. I'm really hoping he will agree to be tested for various mental health issues. I believe he is undiagnosed. I've tried for years to get him help and a diagnoses but my ex just turns his head and ignores there is a problem until it blows up in his face. I find it very off that all three of my adult children can't stand their Father's girlfriend. Something is not right. Their Father has some issues himself, I caught him having relations with men while we were separated. I told him he and our children could never be happy unless he was truthful and was with who he really wanted to be with. Men. He chose to stay in his closet. Two of our adult children know. I tried to keep it from GTG until he was 18 and was shocked when he just outright asked me if his Dad was gay.
  12. scent of cedar

    scent of cedar New Member

    Paighton, I am here, too. It helps so much to know we are not alone with the horrible pain of what is happening.

    I am glad you found us.

    I will hold a good thought for you and for your son.

    I want to say too Paighton, that we each search our children's pasts for what we might have done, or what we might have done differently, to prevent what is happening, now. It is good to do that, but most often Paighton, there are no answers. Even when we have raised our children with such happiness and love, they sometimes choose to go a wrong way. We love them, we suffer for and with them...but sometimes, there is nothing we can do. I am so sorry this is happening to you, and to your child.

  13. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Paighton -
    Fellow Canadian here...

    There is one exception to the rule that they can't help him unless he wants help: if he is in imminent danger of harming himself or others... he can be committed to psychiatric care against his will. AFAIK, that's the only override in the system. Depending on which province, police can be involved in locating and transporting, but you need evidence of intent and plan to harm.