1000 Miles Is The Only Thing....

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by Scott_G, Dec 29, 2014.

  1. Scott_G

    Scott_G Member

    .....that has managed to keep my marriage in tact and my wife (hopefully) on the road to detachment. Right now our son is living in Miami over 1000 miles away from us. I am so happy to see him gone and I really think this is the only way he stands a chance of making it on his own. Things got so bad at one point that I gave my wife an ultimatium-learn what detachment is and practice it right away or I will file for divorce. That was cause for some tense times, and at one point my wife actually told me that she thought we should split up. Finally she seemed to come to her senses and decide her marriage was more important. But when push comes to shove (he shows up on our doorstep cold, hungry, and homeless), history has shown her to always cave in. When he first left, she cried every day for weeks. This drove me nuts, but eventually she started to get over it. With time, and most importantly distance, I really believe she is starting to see the situation for what it is. She has acknowledged that her son is indeed a grown man and that there is no longer anything that she could or more importantly, should do for him. He needs to learn to swim, or sink, all on his own. With the distance between us, there is no more mommy coming to his immediate resuce. He will need to sort out his day to day problems on his own. I also think for my wife, there is a definite aspect of out of sight, out of mind. When he was around here, she was constantly worrying if he was okay. There were even times when she would drive around looking for him if she hadn't heard from him in a few days and he wasn't answering his phone. I also think that now that she is no longer in the middle of the drama, she is more open to listening to advice on how to handle him.

    For now he is sleeping on a friends couch. He has managed to secure a job as a bus boy at a restaurant in MIami Beach right on the water. He also claims that he has kicked heroin. He says he is saving up money to get an apartment on his own. For the holidays we decided that it was too soon for him to come here and we weren't paying anyway. Honestly, the holidays were very happy without him and his drama. For Christmas we actually ditched the entire family thing and it was just the two of us. Best Christmas in a long time, epecially after the Christmas we had last year.
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  2. in a daze

    in a daze Well-Known Member

    Thanks for posting, Scott! What a nice update! Thanks for reminding me and all the "mommies" on this site (that is, those of us who need reminding) that our sons are grown men and not little boys any longer.

    I was talking to my cousin last night, who has a difficult child sister. Last year, she told her mother, "I am giving you a choice. You can either keep giving money to difficult child; in that case I am signing over POA to her and she can handle your's and handicapped brother's affairs, at which case I am DONE with you and I am cutting off all ties. Or, you will stop giving money to difficult child and I will continue to help and support you, provided that you show me your bank statement every month. I will be back at the end of the day and you can let me know of your decision."

    This was last spring and my aunt was in the hospital recovering from surgery. She chose to stop giving her daughter money, and has held to that. Daughter is doing just fine and surviving somehow (at least according to her Facebook posts!)

    This is similar to what you did with your wife, Scott. I don't know if I could do it, but it was certainly effective! Drastic symptoms call for drastic actions...
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  3. Tanya M

    Tanya M Living with an attitude of gratitude Staff Member

    Hi Scott, great post. I can so relate to the 1000 mile barrier. My difficult child is 1100 miles away from me and there is much peace that comes with that. I don't have to worry about him showing up my doorstep (not that it couldn't happen) but unlikely.

    I'm grateful that my husband and I never got to the point that an ultimatum had to be presented but it sure came close. I was the one who said NO MORE while husband still wanted to give. My difficult child will be 34 next month and still has yet to get his life together and I'm just glad we stopped the money train years ago.

    Happy New Year to you and your wife. I wish a peace filled year.
  4. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I remember the year you had last year Scott and I am so happy that it has worked out for you and your wife. I am glad your son is far away, that is usually much, much easier on us. Happy New Year to you Scott, I hope this is a terrific year for both you and your wife.......get out of Dodge for awhile, take a celebratory sort of honeymoon together.......celebrate your marriage........
  5. Albatross

    Albatross Well-Known Member

    Great update, Scott! I am glad that some distance gave you both the calm you needed to put the focus back where I think it belongs -- on the two of you. Your son is living his own life now and will figure it out when he is ready.
  6. Scent of Cedar *

    Scent of Cedar * Well-Known Member

    It helps each of us to hear the success stories, Scott. It is good to know your marriage is intact and that your son is doing better on his own than would ever have happened had you continued taking responsibility for him from him.

    This is stellar.

  7. Childofmine

    Childofmine one day at a time

    When we are physically separated from them, we can rest, recoup and recover from living inside a tornado. Then, we can start to think more clearly. We start to feel more peaceful as the days pass and all of our worst fears do not come to pass---what??!! They are actually surviving??!!---the momentum begins to build and we start to heal.

    Having physical separation has been a huge boon to me and my own recovery. It was very hard when he was homeless and it was cold but I have learned that I cannot----and I will not---live in the eye of the tornado anymore.

    My house is my sanctuary today. I need that space and peace and I deserve it.

    Scott so glad to hear that you and your wife are still together and you had a good holiday with her.