What is my responsibility???????

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by standswithcourage, Mar 23, 2009.

  1. standswithcourage

    standswithcourage New Member

    I did a dumb thing. My difficult child called and drove me crazy saying he needed $10.00 to have a place to live! . So I gave him $10.00 not to be used for that but of course after I gave it - I kicked myself. This situation is just not getting better. I did go away for the weekend with my husband and had a great time. Turned my cell phone off and everything. I am reading more literature about co-dependency. I want to do something so someone will know what he is up to but need to keep hands off. I just wonder what to do next. Actually I dont think it is my responsiblity! he has an appointment. at Voc Rehab this Thursdday at 10:00 in the morning. I would have to take off school to take him to it. He made the appointment. so I think it is his responsiblity. However I really think he needs to go and he said he wanted to - so I guess he will figure out how to get there. But what do you do when you think something should be getting better? I think maybe we need to take a restraining order out - or not let him get into the car.
  2. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    Ok, Stands, you slipped. It is normal and natural. It was a $10 slip - not the end of the world. Chalk it up to learning and go on. TRY not to do it again.

    When he keeps calling and bothering you - block his number. You can call customer service at your home and cell phone co and they will teach you how to block a number. You can unblock it later when you are feeling stronger. It is NOT a permanent cut off, just a way to give you a break. The repeated calling is HARRASSMENT. he does it because he thinks it will give him what he wants.

    If you make it so he can't call you for a few hours, or even a day or 3, it is not the end of the world. You can call and check in with him when you feel stronger.

    Just because you have a phone does NOT mean that you are obligated to speak to anyone who wants to talk to you anytime they want your attention. You have the right to not take any call you don't want to take - for ANY reason. You don't even have to give the reason. Tell him you are in heavy traffic, taking a bubble bath, getting a massage, screaming into a pillow, or tell him nothing at all.

    As for the car, is he forcing his way into the car and refusing to get out? Drive to the police station or call 911. That is NOT safe and is something that can end up with someone HURT. You will need to tell 911 that your drug addicted son will not get out of your car and is pressuring you for $$ or a place to stay or whatever. Tell them that you are afraid to leave him alone in the car because he may damage it or steal it (both could happen. he may even have keys to the car taken while he lived with you or visited you - I know several addicts who have done this. They have taken keys from anyone's car/home they could get their hands on. Then if left alone in the car they drive off with it. They say that it was "loaned" to them and they have a key to prove it!!! So don't leave him alone in the car.)

    A restraining order is an option if he refuses to follow your requests regarding contact. If he comes into your home and refuses to leave you have a real problem. In some areas if you let him stay even ONE night he can them claim that he has tenant's rights and you would have to formally evict him. Not in every area, but another member had this problem at one time.

    If you get a restraining order be SURE to talk to your daughter and other son about it. You want to give them the info AND let them know you will support them if they choose to do this also.

    You have made some great progress in breaking the codependent and enabling cycle with difficult child. I know he is trying harder than ever to control you, to keep you in that enabling pattern, but you are really starting to think things through and act purposefully - rather than just reacting to difficult child's behavior. You should be proud of yourself, it has been a real struggle for you.

    What ever you do, be sure you have your cell phone in your pocket. Especially around the house where you get comfortable but he may show up and refuse to leave. You need to practice excusing yourself to the bathroom in a way that will not make him suspicious. Then you can phone 911 or husband for assistance.

    Remember - Progress, not Perfection. You are doing a great job!
  3. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    At least it was a 10.00 slip and not a 100.00 or 1000.00 slip. Don't beat yourself up too badly over it.

    But your right, it's his responsiblity to get to appointments. You have your own life and it's not like he's to the point of really giving it his all.

    Might be better to try when difficult child asks for money.

    I'm sorry dear, I don't have the cash on me.

    I'm sorry dear, I'm broke.

    I'm sorry dear, I spent my last dollar getting my nails done. (LOL)

    You get the idea.

    I get *hints* from K all the time how tight money is and how bad they're hurting. BIG hints that I either ignore or tell her that I'm tapped out at the moment. I got enormous hints to pay the way for Kayla, Alex, and Evan......not to mention their parents to go to the circus because OMG they'd never had the money to go and all their little friends were going and that made K feel like the worst parent in the world. It didn't work. No guilt here. MY kids went to the circus once during their childhood....using their Dad's birthday money...a gift from his Mom. When you're that poor, you don't go to the circus. sheesh Even if I'd paid their way in, there is all that other extra stuff you have to pay for to enjoy it!

    So see? Lot's of kids pull the same routine. Not just yours. I've also been getting hints about them coming here to live.......which I've flat out ignored. I know times are hard, but at 29 and 40 at least one of you ought to be able to find a job, even if it's McDonald's. And I know her husband is not working or even looking for a job.

    Adult children can be a royal PITA at times.

  4. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    You don't do anything.
    If he gets in your car and won't get out, yes, drive to the police. He can hurt you. He may not want to or mean to, but he's a drug addict. My daughter hit me once (quite hard) when she was using. It isn't something she would ever have done sober. Your son is probably stronger than my daughter, yet I couldn't use my arm for a week.
    If necessary, put your money on a debit card. Then you HAVE no money. Or ask, "What do you want me to buy you? I'll get it for you if it's something I feel you need."
    Say the Serenity Prayer and concentrate on the healthy people that you love and yourself.
    It's hard to watch a child self-destruct so detach because you can't stop him.
    The time to act is if he comes to you for SERIOUS help, after having made SERIOUS changes, not now. Let him hit rock bottom, several times if necessary. (((Hugs)))
  5. ML

    ML Guest

    I'm coming in new to your situation but wanted to just tell you that I know how hard it is to fight codependency. I have been a caretaker all my life. I still have "Codependent No More" on my bedside table. I go to alanon meetings which help tremendously. I'm proud of you for recognizing the disease in yourself and for trying to help yourself. Hugs, ML
  6. CrazyinVA

    CrazyinVA Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Detaching is hard, and it takes practice. A slip is inevitable, and the others are right, at leaset it was only a $10 slip. The progress I see is that you RECOGNIZE it as a slip and a mistake, where in the past, you might have made excuses for why you gave it to him. Give yourself credit for that... it's big.

    Now that you know what buttons he pushed to get you to break down and give him the $10, you can be more aware of those next time, and be a little bit stronger and able to say NO.

    What is your responsbility? Absolutely nothing when it comes to his recovery. Becuase it is HIS recovery, not yours. You are only responsible for yourself and your actions, not his.
  7. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Very good Susan! I slip all the time with a few bucks here and there. Well, I dont hand Cory cash but I buy him a pack or two of cigs, take him to the grocery store if I am going out, pick up Mandy from school once in awhile, and even buy a few groceries when they are running very low. I do this because he is trying so very hard right now. If he was being rude and obnoxious my help would dry up in a New York minute.
  8. everywoman

    everywoman Active Member

    Your responsibility is to yourself and the other members of your family who are doing what they need to do to live a happy, successful life. You are not responsible for a grown man who chooses to live life the way your son has chosen to live his. If you need to give him a few bucks here and there to help you feel better---then do not feel quilty about it. That's not enabling. Enabling is allowing him to continue to use you to help him live the lifestyle he has chosen. Enabling is allowing him to come home without a treatment plan. Enabling is putting your life on hold to take him to the dr., calling his lawyers, not going on trips with your husband, just because you are trying to control his use of drugs. You are his mother. You will always be his mother, and it is okay to love him and worry about his well-being. Learn to seperate the addict from the person. It's okay to love the person and hate the addiction. Feed the person, not the addiction.
  9. Star*

    Star* call 911........call 911

    Stands - (gonna stick with that - I get the Sues, Susies, and Suz's mixed up and don't want to)

    This is the "thing" that isnt' a tangible thing - that happens when we start to allow our kids to stand on their own 2 feet and figure out that they really DO have to start taking some responsibility for themselves because Mom and Dad are not going to. It's not that we don't want to - it's not that we couldn't - it's that we are NOT going to.

    They know this - despite their best attempts to mask it - THEY KNOW IT. And they don't like it because they were comfortable to a degree when Mom and Dad stepped in to fix it.

    Our son just borrowed a pretty good size chunk of change off us. He was floored when we asked him for the title to his non-registered car, and to sign a legal document that stated he would pay the money back by XX-XX-2009. That it was a loan - NOT a gift. It was either that or watch him go to prison for 6 years for probation violation for under paid fines.

    We KNEW he was going to need help, but didn't volunteer. We KNEW he may not ask and just allow his depression to let him be put in jail for 6 years....but we did NOT interfere. He finally came to us and in a last ditch attempt told us ALL the resources he tried, all the things he owned that he sold and all the people he asked for work. I really was a little put off by the whole thing - but in the end we drew up a loan agreement and he signed it and I will pursue it. And he KNOWS it. So loaning or giving $10 to your son wasn't a bad thing - it made you feel good - and he needed it.

    This getting into the car thing and not getting out? These are desperate attempts from a child who isn't getting his comfort zone met any longer by his parents. He's already figured out so much - but this is really desperate. If he got in the car? I wouldn't drive anywhere. I would get out, take my keys.....and sit somewhere until he got out. If he did NOT? THEN I would call the police. Once of that should do it.

    Actually Stands I know this is so hard on your heart. I am very glad you took the weekend to be with your Hubby. I think he needed his wife too. So many times with these kids we're so involved with THEM - our spouses get neglected and they too need their batteries recharged to deal with this life.

    It would be a lot more beautiful world if addiction was a thing of the past.

    Hugs for your hurting heart - Hugs for your accomplishment!

    You have come a long way! Pat yourself on the back -

  10. standswithcourage

    standswithcourage New Member

    You all are so generous with your feelings and everything. I think I should start a new thread.