Adult son really edgy, tense and nervous - meltdown!

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by Estherfromjerusalem, Sep 26, 2009.

  1. Estherfromjerusalem

    Estherfromjerusalem Well-Known Member

    I find it difficult to believe that I'm writing this. difficult child, after spending a month in Thailand (for me it was a wonderful month with him away) is back at home, looking for work, has broken up with his girlfriend and is being a pain in the neck. But still, there is always some sort of limit on his behavior. When he gets really edgy and tense and nervous, I normally get out of his way and he works it through by himself and calms down, or goes off to a friend or something.

    Well, this Friday afternoon he had a complete meltdown. He was annoying me with his nasty comments and I was in the kitchen and because of the approaching Sabbath I just couldn't get out of the kitchen, there were things I just had to finish on time. He was washing the dishes because he had offered to do it and when I wanted to do it he said, "No, I said I would do it, don't you dare," so I left it but deadline time was coming nearer and nearer and I admit I put a bit of pressure on him to get on with it and do it "now." So he did come into the kitchen and was washing the dishes but speaking really nasty and he wouldn't stop, until I lost my temper and screamed at him to shut up. easy child son (aged 24) came running (he was scared for my health and my bad heart) and they almost started a fisticuffs fight, so husband came to separate them, doors banged shut and difficult child just completely lost control, screaming and lashing out (but not actually managing to hit anyone). All this time, a girlfriend of mine who had come to stay for the weekend was cowering in the living room. She told me afterwards that she was sure there would be actual blows.

    After that, difficult child just disappeared. He drove away. I don't know where he is. It is now Saturday night, and we haven't heard a word. husband has tried phoning him but he isn't answering any calls.

    This is so disappointing. We have come such a long way, but every time, he slips right back. I know that compared to many others, our situation is good, but honestly, he just doesn't know how to count his blessings, and he always manages to sabotage every situation, and I wish I had the strength to throw him out. But I can't and I won't. I know he will come back home. Maybe he will do it within the next day, and ask to be forgiven (since it is our Day of Atonement on Sunday night and Monday, which is the time to ask for forgiveness and to be forgiven). And maybe he won't -- I won't hold my breath!! easy child son is getting married on 1 November, and when he leaves then difficult child son will be the only one at home.

    And just to make matters worse, older difficult child (aged 39, single) came for Friday night supper, and he also started to behave in a difficult child way, being rude to my husband, and I spoke up and said that that was unacceptable, and he gave me a look that I haven't seen for many years, full of anger and hostility, like he used to when he was a teenager and in his early twenties. It was a pretty miserable atmosphere in our household last night, that's for sure. However, by the time he (older difficult child) left things were better between us. Even so, this is all rather upsetting.

    This is not the sort of update I would have liked to write, but still I wanted to share it with you all. I don't think I will tell my sisters. It's like going back several years. Quite honestly, I'm embarrassed.

    Love, Esther
  2. Fran

    Fran Former desparate mom

    Esther, it is demoralizing to see gfgness shine out of their eyes. It's almost worse now because you have periods of calm and normal and almost hope that they find their way.
    It is unfortunate that both were acting up.
    I understand your need to not toss him out on his own but then you have to know you have to live with it until he thinks it's his idea to move on.
    I hope difficult child comes to you on your holiest day of the year and asks for forgiveness.
    Hugs. Don't make yourself sick over his behavior.
  3. GoingNorth

    GoingNorth Crazy Cat Lady

    I'm sorry Esther. Tho' I am non-observant, I can still imagine how heartbreaking this must be to have happen during the time of year when we try to reconcile our difficulties with people and things from the previous year.

    For the Gentiles, the start of the Jewish New Year is when we look back at our previous year and try to make amends to those we may have mistreated/hurt. We then promise to do better in the upcoming year.

    It's sort of different from the usual New Year in that we don't make resolutions to do specific things in the new year (go on a diet, etc).

    Just having it happen on Shabbos is bad enough, let alone during the Days of Awe.

    Unfortunately, the solution of having difficult child move out on his own isn't as easy as it would be over here.

    Traditionally, Jewish children stay with their families until they actually marry and then move away.
  4. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    Esther, it's both boys who should be embarrassed, not you. You didn't behave inappropriately, they did.

    Not fun, at all. And it's disappointing when you see them take a step backward.

  5. Estherfromjerusalem

    Estherfromjerusalem Well-Known Member

    Thank you for your replies. It's so good to unburden here with the "family" who don't judge me but just accept me the way I am. I appreciate what you have written. I am a little bit worried not to have heard from him at all. I presume he is OK, but I would like to be certain.

    When he used to have meltdowns when he was younger, I was also younger and stronger and could cope with it better. But these days my husband and I have got used to a calmer way of life. difficult child sort of comes and goes and we try very hard to just carry on with our lives and accommodate him in such a way that it doesn't disturb us any more than necessary. Occasionally there are good moments, but usually we just sort of pass each other at different moments during the day, and that's how we all manage to get on. I feel a bit sad at the moment. I don't understand what drives him to be like this. He is intelligent, good looking, healthy, has friends. He hasn't studied anything at all, yet he has a very good general knowledge, reads a lot. He just can't hold down a job, and in any case any job he does is no challenge -- he delivers pizzas or washes down large milk trucks or stuff like that. When he was saving up to go to Thailand he held down a job because he was truly motivated. I just can't understand that sort of mindset. I know that if I work, I have money. If I don't work, I don't have money and we cannot cope. It's as simple as that. I suppose in his eyes I am some sort of sucker. I really find it hard to understand him.

    Anyway, thanks for caring and for the hugs.

    Love, Esther
  6. ThreeShadows

    ThreeShadows Quid me anxia?

    Oh, Esther, at our age we sure didn't think the difficult children would still have such an impact on our golden years, did we?

    I am so sorry. Why can't they understand the concept of respect and dignity?
    God bless you and keep you well.
  7. Estherfromjerusalem

    Estherfromjerusalem Well-Known Member

    Three Shadows, you are so right! I didn't think the day would come when I would wish for an empty home, but I yearn for peace and quiet, and I suppose it is my "golden years" working on me. I certainly didn't think we would still be having meltdowns at this age (he is 23 now).

    Late last night my easy child came home and told me that he made inquiries and found out where difficult child is, but that difficult child doesn't want any contact with us. That's fine with me, so long as I know he is OK. He has a very very good friend in another town whose family are just wonderful to him (and he probably behaves wonderfully there, too). I'm sure the contact will be renewed when he realizes that he really needs something from us. Sad, but that's the way it is.

    Oh well, I suppose I can look at the full half of the glass and be grateful for the good things about difficult child as well, but at the moment it's difficult. I'll think about all the rest of my huge family and be grateful for them.

    I'll be out of touch for a couple of days -- I'll be back tomorrow night after fasting.

    Love, Esther
  8. Kathy813

    Kathy813 Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Oh Esther,

    I'm so sorry to hear that you difficult child is up to his old tricks. It is harder when they show their difficult child side after you have had peace and quiet for a while. It's like they take the hope that is building inside you and smash it to smithereens.

    Can you tell that I have been there done that?

    Enjoy the respite while he is gone and have a blessed holiday. Hatima Tova! (I had to google that . . . I hope that it is correct).

  9. Suz

    Suz (the future) MRS. GERE

    I'm sorry for your pain and frustration, Esther. You are entitled to peace. Do not be embarrassed for something you didn't do and have no control over.

  10. Estherfromjerusalem

    Estherfromjerusalem Well-Known Member

    Katya -- yes, Hatima Tova is spot on! It means a "good inscription" and means that one hopes to be inscribed for a good year by the powers that be!

    Suz, thanks for your empathy.

    Well, the fast is behind us. No one likes to go into it with bad feelings, including difficult child apparently, because about one hour before the fast started he phoned us, said sorry and that was his reaching out to "make good" again. I am thrilled that he felt he could do that. Fran, that is what you said you hoped would happen, and it did!

    And this evening (after the fast is over) he is already here. Of course, no more peace and quiet! But it's better this way, for the time being. I do believe that the time is soon coming when he will find somewhere else to live, but he has to be organized first of all with a regular job. He really does want to work, but so far it isn't happening. He has all sorts of small jobs, but nothing regular, and he is well aware that it can't carry on like this. He is looking. The economic climate isn't good anywhere in the world at the moment, and that includes Israel. But the axiom still holds true, that someone who is determined to find a job will find work and an income. So we will have to keep a spark of optimism, although I must admit that I am really tired of it all, but I have no choice. As Going North said, traditionally Jewish boys don't usually leave home early, before they get married. Although I certainly wouldn't object to breaking with tradition on this one!!

    So we are back to the old situation again. I see that he is trying to behave well with my husband which is good.

    Oh, and by the way, old difficult child was with us to eat before the fast and then again after the fast, and he slept here last night (very rare indeed). He couldn't have behaved better, so I presume his lousy mood on Friday night was a transient thing and not the beginning of some nasty episode. Oh, one has to be so patient!

    OK, that's it for now. Thank you all for being there.

    Love, Esther
  11. Nomad

    Nomad Guest

    My thought too...doubly heartbreaking to have this going on during a holiday. I'm so sorry.

    Holidays can be mind boggling painful for me and I'm sure all of us. (Hugs)

    Please be aware that for some reason, certain times of the year seems to bring out difficult child 'stuff' for many of our kids.

    In our situation, early fall...usually some time in October is a problem and then again in the Spring.

    As best as you are able, I would limit any adult kid's time living in your home and continue to encourage work.
    Also, remember never to tolerate any abusive behavior toward you.

    Just read your second note....sounds like your son is trying his best...just really not sure of himself.

    Again, I'm so sorry for all of this.

    Please nurture your husband...pray (ask) for wisdom and comfort.