Another update

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by SeekingStrength, Nov 20, 2017.

  1. SeekingStrength

    SeekingStrength Well-Known Member

    Difficult Child is now 36yo. Some of you who have been around awhile may remember his dad and I (finally) stopped enabling about the time I found this wonderful forum. A year or so later, my mom started enabling, despite knowing quite a bit about what Difficult Child's dad and I and siblings had been through.

    Difficult Child has stolen and lied to her several times thoughout the last couple years. My dad has wanted to send Difficult Child on his way, but my mom has refused. She knew she could get through to him and turn his life around. She believed all the horror stories he told her. NO WONDER he was so messed up, right? Turns out his dad and I were drunk and high every night while he was growing up. (Who knew???)

    A couple weeks ago, my mom discovered Difficult Child had stolen thousands of $$ of antiques from their home. He has also taken their mini van. The local police say there is nothing they can do about the vehicle, as Difficult Child had permisson to drive it. A high school friend of Difficult Child's, who is an attorney, sent my mom an email saying that two friends would return the vehicle (never happened) and that Difficult Child asked him to tell them that he is "outa here". We will have lunch with my parents on Thanksgiving and there will probably be more details forthcoming, although, i hope to hear nothing more.

    My dad keeps saying, "You warned us. This is playing out just like you said it would." My mom is more like, "I had to try. I could never live with myself otherwise." I will not bring it up, but she is saying this after my nuclear family has suffered twenty years of Difficult Child's abuse and disrespect.

    From time to time, I offer evidence here about how continued enabling does not help. Just another public service announcement. :(
    • Winner Winner x 4
    • Friendly Friendly x 3
    • Agree Agree x 2
    • Like Like x 1
    • List
  2. Littleboylost

    Littleboylost On the road unwanted to travel

  3. Littleboylost

    Littleboylost On the road unwanted to travel

    The lies and gaslighting are so unreal. We apparently are drunk and high and beat our son too. You can’t make this stuff up.

    Thank you as a newbie here this gives me strength to carry on and detach with love. Honestly the love part is a tad more difficult than the detaching part at the moment.
    • Agree Agree x 3
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
    • List
  4. ForeverSpring

    ForeverSpring Well-Known Member

    Nope, it doesnt work to just take care of them and hope they respond and listen. If your adult child has strep throat or the flu or even cancer, TLC is very helpful and welcome by most adult children.

    Addiction and general abusive behavior (due to any reason) does NOT NOT NOT respond to our kindness and nurturing. In fact it teaches them new ways to manipulate us, abuse us, use us. It doesnt help them be better people.

    I have been here for so long...i forget. Over a decade. Not one story of a parent nursing an addict and bathing him in kindness has ended wirh the addict or borderline or narcicistic child suddenly turning it around. It is after we have gotten tough that many turn around. Our money, our homes, our deals with them, our over talking, our pushing, our suggesting, our begging, our warm food, gift cards, clothing, crying, our hearts breaking for seems to work against addicts and those with no motivation/personality problems. The more we give, the more they want.

    I bring this up too from time to time. It is in every way against our mother hearts not to nurture and help, yet usually the only time they once we pull out and stop helping.

    This doesnt mean we stop letting them know we love them. It means we 100% get out of their ways. Does it always help them?

    No. But second, third, nine chances, money, enabling etc....i have never seen it work, at least not on this forum.

    So. ..think about it when you want to "help." Think if it worked yet. If nothing changes, nothing changes.

    Thanks, SS. Good to hear from you. Sorry the news is not better.
    • Winner Winner x 6
    • Agree Agree x 2
    • List
    Last edited: Nov 21, 2017
  5. Littleboylost

    Littleboylost On the road unwanted to travel

    Holy cow SWOT this post resonates sooo much with me. That is kinda like the path I took to get here over the past 6 months. We delude ourselves because it all seems so sereal.

    If we don’t pull ourselves up out of the FOG our DCs truly don’t stand a chance.

    Thank you all for the instant FOG remover. I had to use it several times. Baby steps and progress are what matters.
  6. Albatross

    Albatross Well-Known Member

    It's always so good to "see" you, SS! I hoped the news would be better though.

    Well, at least your mom is using "had" to try instead of "have" to try. Maybe she's getting there.

    It's so frustrating when we can see our DCs fooling others with their same old song-and-dance, whether it's neighbors, or family friends, or friends of friends, or parents of their latest crash buddy, or.... I can't imagine how frustrating it is to see him do this to your own parents. I'm so sorry, SS.

    I hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving, and I hope it is free of all talk of Difficult Child!
    • Like Like x 3
    • Funny Funny x 1
    • Winner Winner x 1
    • List
  7. Lil

    Lil Well-Known Member

    I'd have your dad call the lawyer friend and tell HIM to tell your Difficult Child that they are reporting the van stolen if it's not returned. They have no way to know that the cops refuse to take the report. In fact, I'd tell lawyer friend that HIS name is the one I'll be giving the police as the last person they knew had possession of the van! I'd also have them try to make the report again if the van is not returned in a day or so after that. He had permission to drive it, not to take it and keep it and leave town with it and never bring it back. If I lend my lawnmower to the neighbor with the understanding that they put it back in my shed when they are done and they refuse to give it back even after being told to do so, that's theft.
    • Winner Winner x 3
    • Agree Agree x 1
    • List
  8. Jabberwockey

    Jabberwockey Well-Known Member

    This was my parents attitude when they took our son in. Thank God they actually had a bit of experience raising a difficult child (not me! :angel3:)
    so they didn't hang on to that thinking for more than a few weeks. Even that was long enough for our son to pull a bone headed stunt and cause a rift between himself and my siblings. For those who weren't around or don't remember, he threw one of his fits of anger in front of my parents and scared them. Long story short, my brother threatened to beat his butt if he ever did that again (as he should) and sibs forced the issue and forced him out of mom and dads (they would have kicked him out within another week or so anyway) and several years later he still wont associate with them even on FB because they OBVIOUSLY don't love him or care for him. He is finally starting to let that go after, WOW! Has it actually been over two years ago now?!?!
    • Agree Agree x 1
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
    • List
  9. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    This is the part that flew out at me SS, that you and your husband were not honored and respected throughout the entire ordeal.....that you've been dealing with this for 20 years without support from your family.......another really crummy consequence with our difficult kids.......their lies and manipulations pull families apart and lesson the ability for parents to receive the much needed support from extended family and friends.

    I'm sorry SS, it sucks on a number of levels for see your parents suffer under your son's thievery and lies......and to recognize the lack of support from your parents, that they believed your son's lies over your truth. The hurts that our adult kids can create for us is multileveled......I'm so sorry.

    ......thanks for the 'public announcement'......born out of your struggles.......thanks for sharing.

    Sending hugs SS.....

    As I always say, you and your husband go out and celebrate your ability to know what the truth is and to have detached from your son and his shenanigans.......let all of this go and go enjoy life.
    Your son and your parents are in their own movie, it has nothing to do with you.....
  10. SeekingStrength

    SeekingStrength Well-Known Member


    Warrant was issued a few weeks ago for Difficult Child's arrest. He was incarcerated about a week before he bailed out. We suspect a current girlfriend, but not sure. There was the theft and a "misuse of vehicle"--or something like that, and one other charge that I cannot remember. There are definitely felonies involved.

    I visited/lunched with parents and brother today. Brother (a judge) can find out who bailed Difficult Child out, but has not asked. That is fine; at the end of the day, it does not matter. There is a no-contact order with my parents (not that Difficult Child has ever honored a no-contact order with ex-girlfriend's). : (

    Detective told my parents that Difficult Child is looking at 10-20 years in prison. If he cooperates, it could be down to 5 years.

    While my heart will always be a bit broken, husband and I are in a good place. Much of that is because of this forum.

    I will stay with you and all of you stay with this forum. We will get through this in a good way.

  11. New Leaf

    New Leaf Well-Known Member

    HI SS, I missed the beginning of your post in November. 20 years. Thats me too, with my eldest, then Tornado followed in her footsteps. Now, they are both making excuses and accusations about "why they are the way they are." It's everyone else's fault, especially mine.
    I feel the same way. Always a bit broken and effected, who wouldn't be? I am glad you are in a good place, despite your sons continued issues. Yes, CD has been and is a Godsend.
    Thank you SS, for the update and for being here with your wisdom and advice. We will get through this in a good way.
    • Like Like x 1
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
    • List
  12. Littleboylost

    Littleboylost On the road unwanted to travel


    I feel your pain and sorrow and know what are the it takes to endure this agony and move on.

    Regardless of the history of our DCs they are our children/ adult children and the knees of their misdoings and impending imprisonment is very very hard on us.

    Keep coming back for support. Prepaid CD now needs a new forum for people with encarcerated DCs.

    You are not alone. And do remember you didn’t Cause this you can’t Cure it and you certainly can’t Control it. You are doing the right thing by setting and continuing to have healthy boundaries for yourselves.
  13. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    SS, I am so sorry to read about your son's incarceration. You and your husband have been thru it all with your son.

    I'm glad you're both in a good place. Who knows, perhaps a stint in jail will offer your son a new perceptive. And as many of us feel here, you may sleep a little bit better knowing your son is safe in jail away from his lifestyle choices. Sigh.

    We will circle the wagons around you and your husband......we're all here for you, as you know, you're not alone.

    Hang in there SS......sending you big, warm, caring hugs......
    • Friendly Friendly x 2
    • Like Like x 1
    • List
  14. Albatross

    Albatross Well-Known Member

    I am so sad to read this update, SS. No one wanted your son to get away with what he did, but that doesn't make incarceration for 5-20 years any less heartbreaking.

    You have been through so, so much, from both ends...both as a parent watching your child target and maneuver, and as an adult child experiencing your parents not only disbelieve you, but be victimized as a result.

    Perhaps it will provide some peace to you to know that son will at least be in a safe place...and that your parents will be safer from his efforts to target them as well.

    I surely hope that something good comes out of this...

    Perhaps your mother will finally realize it is time to STOP mindlessly "supporting" him...

    Perhaps your son, through his isolation and restriction on blindly following his impulses, will be led to some insights...

    Perhaps you and hubs will at least finally be validated for all you have been through the past 20 years...and maybe something good will come out of that...

    I'm so sorry, SS...
    • Friendly Friendly x 2
    • Like Like x 1
    • List
  15. SeekingStrength

    SeekingStrength Well-Known Member

    Thank you from the bottom of my heart. Your responses brought tears to my eyes - the first tears I have shed over this latest fiasco.

    Wish I could hug each of you right now. Okay, I am hugging you and I hope you can feel it.

  16. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    ss. i am sorry.

    i have a different take. i guess it comes from our time on the foo threads.

    first. i do feel for your mother. she is a victim of a crime. she was violated (with your dad) and her home was violated. your son is a perpetrator. your parents are the latest in a long line of his victims.


    your mother whether it is pridefulness or long held grievances against you and your husband chose to enable your son over several years. she did so knowing full well what son had done to you. she knew he had hurt you. she knew how he disrespected you. she knew what he had done to others. she permitted him to malign you and she gave consent to this by listenning to him and helping him. was there malice or responsibility here?

    it seems to me as if she enabled him to hurt you more and more. and she did so for years.

    in some ways i feel sorry for your son. because he was just being him. i am not saying he does not deserve the consequences. but really. your mother gave him the message he could do and say anything he wanted...and she would support him. until she pulled out the rug.

    i wonder, really, if your mother's intent was to help your son. or if it was always something else.

    this is a very sad story all the way around. i did not see it in november. i feel pain for you. a great deal. and actually for your son, a little bit, too.
    • Like Like x 1
    • Agree Agree x 1
    • List
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2018
  17. SeekingStrength

    SeekingStrength Well-Known Member


    Thank you for writing the above post. While difficult to accept, your thoughts are probably uncannily correct.
  18. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    seeking. i do not want to be correct about something like this.

    there has been so much confusion, frustration and hurt these past couple years as you and your husband seemed to feel essentially bound and gagged in almost a hostage video as you were almost forced to watch as your mother elevated your son and his voice.

    there seemed almost to be cruelty there.

    the thing is. i don't know what we do with this. you. i. our mothers are old or dead. our lives largely have been lived.

    but for me there is a reality to be acknowledged and acepted.

    after almost 4.5 years since my mother's death i see finally i was the victim here. and it is not wrong of me to see it and even voice it.

    your mother and son did a dance. the dance ended completely predictably. your mother will opine as she will do. you had no choice except to watch. but the reality is they are adults. this has nothing to do with you except as witnesses.

    i am sorry.
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2018