Apprehensive

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by SarahRose, Mar 14, 2018.

  1. SarahRose

    SarahRose New Member

    Hi, my name is Sarah, and I am a new member. I am a mum of three grown children. A son and two daughters Youngest one is almost 28, and is narcissistic, has severe anger issues, is physically violent and has an extremely dominant overbearing personality. Have tried to help her in the past, but had to make her leave after she trashed my home and drove me to the edge of a breakdown, from constantly walking on eggshells around her. She then moved in with a young couple, but they couldn't live with her either, and asked her to leave. Eventually she moved in with a man, and despite her temper outbursts and bashing him and trashing his home a few times, they have struggled on, and they married last year. She is currently pregnant with their first child and not talking to me. She was rude and shouting at me, so I hung up on her because I couldn't reason with her. I wrote to her later, and explained that I will not let her talk to me that way. Because I hung up on her and set a boundary with her, she says she doesn't want my 'negative' energy around her and to please respect her space.....My daughter is very sweet when I am of use to her, but will treat me like garbage in the blink of an eye. Alas, this is how she is, with everyone. I feel constantly apprehensive, as I never know what's around the corner with her. I was so excited about the baby at first, but now I feel apprehensive that she will use this against me. (she has already threatened that my ex-husband won't see the child, because he told her not to be rude to his wife)
     
  2. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Welcome SarahRose. I'm sorry you continue to struggle with your daughter. I have a 45 year old daughter with similar traits and I went thru many years of enabling her.....which never worked out for either of us.

    My daughter was never diagnosed, she doesn't believe there is anything the matter.......however, she likely suffers from some kind of mental illness (it runs in my family).....she acted very much like your daughter when she was younger. I understand how you feel.

    First of all, you may want to read the article on detachment at the bottom of my post here. If you haven't already, you may want to read the book Stop walking on eggshells, taking your life back. It is about Borderline Personality disorder. It may not entirely fit your daughter's issues, but I believe it may be helpful for you. Another good resource is the book Codependent no More by Melodie Beattie. And, if you haven't already, you may want to contact NAMI, the National Alliance on Mental illness.......you can access them online, they have chapters in most cities. They have excellent courses for parents. I took their course and it was extremely helpful.

    My daughter used that exact same phrasing about me.......I was "negative" whenever I did ANYTHING that set any boundary. Yes, your daughter will likely.....unfortunately, use this baby as a bargaining tool, a manipulation, to get what she wants.......or to punish you for imagined wrong doings. My daughter did that too.....ultimately, when my granddaughter was 11, I went to court and received guardianship. My daughter was not a good mother and my granddaughter was suffering. It's not been an easy path with my daughter.....sounds like yours hasn't been easy either. I'm really sorry, I know how much this hurts.

    The best advice I can offer is to limit contact. I've had to do that too. It is heartbreaking in so many ways.....and yet......it is also a relief......you can stop walking on eggshells.

    I would suggest that you continue posting here.....you'll get good support from others who've been in your shoes. Keep yourself well supported. Take good care of yourself. Learn how to detach from your daughters shenanigans.....set strong boundaries. If it feels right, a therapist may be helpful as well, it was for me. It's not easy to detach from our kids. But for some of us, it's necessary.
     
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  3. Triedntrue

    Triedntrue Active Member

    I know it is not as easy now but some places still have grandparents rights. You might talk to a lawyer and see what you can do. Also you said when your daughter needed you she was sweet. I am guessing that she is going to need a babysitter at times and when she does she will allow you to take the baby. This happened with both of my ex daughter in laws. Don't get me wrong i love getting my grandchildren. If you fear that your grandbaby is in danger you can do as recovering enabler did and try to get custody if you are willing or able to do that. But if you do babysit it does not give her the right to speak nasty to you. I have a friend whose daughter can get very volatile and when she did my friend told her if you do not treat me with respect i will not watch your kids. When she had to pay for sitters her attitude changed. I hope things work out for you.
     
  4. SarahRose

    SarahRose New Member

    Thank you for these replies. I'm not used to this forum yet, and had no idea anyone had replied. So thank you very much. You've given me a lot to think about, and it's very timely as I was just starting to think that maybe I was being too judgemental of my daughter. I felt disloyal for talking about her (here) behind her back. After some weeks of her not talking to me, I'd started to think she's not that bad. I had a VERY abusive mother (a very cruel woman), and I don't want to be like her.I guess this is what drives me. So, I keep trying to find a way to make things work with my daughter. Of course, right now, I can't do anything towards mending the relationship, as she simply won't talk to me, as I have 'negative energy'......Reading your comments helps immensely, as I live alone and it's very easy to lose perspective......You are right that my daughter will probably try to exploit me, when the baby comes. A year ago, she announced haughtily that she did not believe in childcare, and that the mother should have a career and the grandparents should mind the baby each day.....I balked at that, as I already have a serious illness and am on disability. I said to her that I didn't object to minding the baby sometimes, to help out, but not every working day. She got huffy then, and said that she was sure her dad would want to help with the baby (he runs a business, so I doubt it).....My daughter and her husband both have a high paying jobs, own their own home, pool, expensive cars, have expensive holidays, etc. But my daughter has expensive tastes. She told that isn't going to change.....So, yes, I suspect she will try to use me, so she can continue living a lavish life..................On the other hand,I do worry about the child, as my daughter is moody, and ill-tempered, and I worry about that.....I will look up those books Recovering Enabler mentioned, too. For now, I've decided to just have limited contact with her (once she is talking to me again.) Typically, she does No Talkies for 3 months. Every time I let my guard down, and let her fully into me heart, she breaks it again. I can't keep doing to that.
     
  5. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    I would not agree to take the grandbaby every day with her treating you like this. No way. Many of our difficult daughters take those grandchildren away from us to punish us for various things they think we did after we have really emotionally invested in those kids. Plus kids are hard when you get older. If your daughter intermittently cuts you off she will do that with her child too and you will not legally be able to stop her. Except for rare circumstances in all states grandparents have no rights....I was told this is due to a Supreme Court ruling. So this is all up to a very unstable daughter.

    I have very good relationships with both of my daughters but I want to do what I want to do now, including travel. I would not be able to full time care for beloved grands even.though both my daughters are kind to me. If your daughter doesn't want to pay for daycare even though they make good money she can stay home. I did when everyone worked and so does my own daughter and they are of modest means. Your daughter likes money? She should not have had a child. They are costly monetarily and need Mom time. And most working mom's with health challenged parents pay for daycare. Oh well.

    You are not going to be able to please this daughter. It will never happen. She is not respectful or kind to you. It is impossible to be at peace all the time with an on again, off again person. My sister was intermittedly nice then would cut me off and called the cops every time she was mad at me (you can't make this stuff up). My Dad is gone now...I have no reason or desire to play that mean/nice game again. I am done. as your daugter will break your heart. And no matter what SHE wants you have to take your own needs and health into consideration. Don't let her bully you just because your mother, like mine, was abusive.

    Your daughter is abusing you like your mother did, not the other way around. Don't let anyone abuse you again. Be careful with your heart. Nobody else will. Have you ever been in therapy? I personally found therapy a good stepping stone for living my own life without harming others. I learnied that saying no is not abuse or selfish. I learned to take care of me for once. I learned (and this was hard) that putting myself first is healthy, not selfish. I finally believe it. And I still can't always do it. But if someone isn't nice to me I can do it now. My sister is gone from my life. I can't give her any more chances and my hub and kids saw this way before I did! I realize it is harder by far to cut off a child. I never would completely unless they harmed me,but I have taught my oldest and hardest to respect me or I will not communicate with him unless he is nice to me. This worked really well with him. He is usually very careful how he speaks to me now because if he starts the anger, I say "I will talk to you again when you are able to speak nicely. Love you." Then I give him three days off. He likes to talk to me so it has been very successful.

    . You may want to read Codependent No More by Melodie Beattie and Boundaries by Townsend and Cloud. The latter book has a Christian slant bit if you are not a Christian you can skip the religious chapters....the rest of the book will work for anyone.

    Do you have other kids, a significant other, other family or good friends? Family is who loves you. DNA has little to do with it. Three of my four kids are adopted and I would not trade them for my DNA, in fact my DNA relatives mostly aren't/ werent nice.
     
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    Last edited: Mar 19, 2018
  6. SarahRose

    SarahRose New Member

    Hi Somewhere Out There...Thank you for writing to me. I have two other grown children, a son and daughter, and get along well with both of them. They are bother very gentle and easy to get along with. And some nice friends. But I try not to discuss my daughter, outside of the family. .......I know you are right, in the things you said. When my abusive daughter lived with me, she was very much a bully. And she's clever. As soon as she's verbally abusive, she immediately jumps down my throat and shouts "And don't you dare say I'm abusing you! Don't you dare play the victim!!"....She was furious at having to pick me up from the hospital a few years ago, after I'd had major abdominal surgery. (for a bowel obstruction) She was so sweet as the nurse helped me into the car, then as soon as we drove off, she started yelling at me, and driving flat out, throwing the car around corners. I had 22 staples in my belly, and felt so vulnerable, and just cowered against the passenger door in terror and silently prayed.....This is just one example of what she is like. I could give you many.....I was readmitted to hospital again, 6 weeks later, and next time, had friends drive me home. (My other daughter was living in England at the time, and my son was away).......I have NO doubt, she will use the baby to 'punish' me, and I can expect periods of not being allowed to see the baby. .....I keep reading what you said, over and over again. You are so kind....I will not let her abuse me again......Thank you also for the book recommendations. I am getting quite a list here, and will head over to Amazon and check out all the books you ladies have recommended.........Recovering Enabler, I also read your post on Detachment. Wow! Really good. .......I actually never agreed to let my daughter live with me, the last time she moved in. She forced her way in, against my will, and refused to leave. I cried, as I couldn't believe she was back again, and I didn't think I could cope a third time. But it was even worse than I could ever have imagined.......It will sound awful, but I'm actually enjoying her not talking to me right now. It's a relief. It's peaceful.......I'll check out those books. :)
     
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  7. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    You sound sweet!! Focus on yourself and your kind children who won't abuse you after you have had surgery!!

    Stay in touch. Let us know how you are doing.
     
  8. New Leaf

    New Leaf Well-Known Member

    Hi Sarah and welcome to the forum. I am so sorry for your troubles with your youngest daughter. It is tough when our d cs grow up and mistreat us. Unacceptable in so many ways.
    My eldest would get upset with me for speaking with friends on issues concerning her. Like I was crossing a “loyalty” line, sharing family secrets, etc. What it really was is that she didn’t want anyone else “up in her business” knowing what she was doing. We are only human and can only hold in so much. Who wouldn’t need to get it off our chest, some way, some how? You are not disloyal, you have a difficult relationship with an abusive adult who happens to be your daughter.
    It never ceases to confound me how people with these tendencies can turn things around to make it their victims fault. She is gaslighting you.
    This is terrible. She targets you, Sarah. To do this to you in a vulnerable time when you are recovering from surgery and defenseless is cruel. You were smart not to call on her again.
    I have been through this with my grands. I have two daughters off the rails with drugs and they can be cunning, manipulative and abusive. My Tornado has used her children as pawns, gone no contact for months, then appeared at our doorstep with them in tow needing a place to stay. It is sad for them, and was for my hubs and I. It never phased my daughter. She has since abandoned her children for drugs. Looking back, she had narcissistic tendencies and drugs have just exacerbated them.
    I have learned to continually work at removing myself emotionally from the whole mess. It is sad, but I don’t want to live the rest of my life emotionally vested in toxic people, even though they are my adult children. It does take work, they are my daughters and I love them. I don’t like their choices, wont tolerate disrespect and abuse. We are not rugs to be used and tread upon.
    As Maya Angelou said “When someone shows you who they are, believe them.”
    It doesn’t sound awful to me. You matter and you deserve to live peaceably. Your daughter targets you, is mean and controlling. Her actions in the hospital going from sweet and caring to abusive in the car, says to me that she knows exactly what she is doing. Ugh. I am sorry Sarah, it is cruel and terrible.
    The only person who can stand up for you, is you. My daughters would try to tug at my heart and try to make me feel guilty for saying no. I have had to build myself an armor and guard my heart. One quote that helps me is “ What you allow, will continue.”
    It is our maternal instinct to try everything to have relationship with our adult children. It is a tough road to travel when they grow up and are not respectful, loving and kind. If it were anyone else, we would not put up with it. I don’t think that because they are our grown children that gives them free pass to be unkind, feel entitled and mistreat is. Unacceptable.
    Please know you are not alone. Do everything you can to build yourself up. Self care is so important.
    You have great worth and you matter.
    (((Hugs)))
    Leafy
     
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  9. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    We don't really know each other. It is one thing to tell somebody who knows our kids and another to post a story here. Not one person here knows who your daughter is.To me this is not the same thing.
     
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  10. SarahRose

    SarahRose New Member

    Oh gosh, thank you so much, everyone of you. I've felt so alone in this, so gagged about speaking up, lest I'm being disloyal. Every word you have said, has helped immensely. Yes, my daughter usually eventually talks to me again when she needs me. (usually she is fighting with someone else and now needs a new source of emotional support). She can never be friends with everyone in the family at the same time, and is always fighting or No Talkies with with someone. Last year, during her Engagement, she ended up fighting with, and dumping both her bridesmaids (months apart). She is still not speaking to either of them, and bad mouthed them to everyone, even though it was HER who was the issue....Her dad threw her a huge engagement party, and just 2 weeks beforehand (after he'd sent out all the invitations), she threatened him that she would not attend, and did No Talkies to him. This was because he pulled her up for being rude to his wife. (his wife is a very lovely lady). He kept trying to call her, and was obviously very stressed as to what to do, but she snubbed him to punish him, right up until 5 days before the event......That day she was abusive about picking me up from the hospital, she was yelling at me about being an inconvenience, and shouting "The whole f------ world does not revolve around you!!!!"........................The young couple she lived with, before she met her now husband, asked her to leave, as my daughter was driving the woman (who was pregnant) close to a breakdown. My vindictive daughter got back at them for asking her to leave, by running down the driveway and grabbing a policeman who was coming up the driveway on another matter, and saying she feared for her life, and that her roommates were doing drugs and threatening her life. (all untrue) She smirked about it later. My ex-husband said he went around there, and found the young couple huddled together crying....After I kicked her out for losing her temper and trashing my home, she told everyone where she worked, that her dad and I abuse her. (no one has every abused her).............. Gosh, even the doctors receptionist copped it. We were waiting to see the doctor and he was running a bit behind, so my daughter jumped up and started shouting and verbally abusing the receptionist. The receptionist quickly put her in her place, and put us in a room by ourselves, to wait for the doctor. Immediately, my daughter phoned her boyfriend and told him that the doctors receptionist had attacked her and was a psycho...... Next day, I rang the receptionist and apologized about my daughters behaviour.....My daughter is very beautiful (she could be a model) and very confident, and I think her looks get her what she wants. Even as a teen, her entire bedroom walls were plastered in pictures of herself doing the 'duckface' expression..She fancies herself an amateur psychologist and read all these Dr Phil books, and lectures and talks down to us and tells us we are 'immature'.....When she lived with me and wouldn't pay her board money and I'd get onto her about it, she'd say "When you act like a child, I'll treat you like a child". .........After she trashed my home (age 21), a neighbour replastered the huge hole she kicked in the wall. (2 feet by 2 feet) She had boots on, and just kicked and kicked, and I was just holding my head and crying. She walked into the house a few days later, while he was replastering the wall, glanced at the hole in the wall and smirked and said "Sweet."......If she wasn't my own child, I'd avoid her like the plague.....She is now 28, and she is not getting better. My intention is to set VERY strong boundaries indeed, and I already know that if I do, she will probably spend most her life not talking to me. You see, the slightest thing will make her hang up on her dad or me, and not talk to us. So achieving Low Contact is as simple as saying quietly "Don't talk to me like that"..............You know, talking it out here really DOES help. Helps me to see she really is that bad, and I'm not being a terrible mother in wanting less contact with her......You know, when she used to push her way into my home, she used to snarl at me "You're my mother. You HAVE to take me." She's played the Guilt and Obligation card so well, but I'm done..(she now uses it on her husband, who cries and apologizes for all their fights, as she gaslights him like mad).............That's what I'm giving up. The Guilt and Obligation.....I'm just done.
     
  11. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Wow. She sounds mean and revengeful in a very vicious way. Lying to the police to get that couple in trouble is a big red flag that she is dangerous, and that means to you too. I felt I had to dump any relationship with my sister largely because she would use the cops against me with bogus complaints. But at least she didn't make up actual crimes.

    I feel your daughter is fine with dividing the entire family for, what seems to be, her need for mean drama and control. in my opinion stay as far away as possible. You have two nice adult kids and they probably could stand to be distant from her too. And your ex. I'm surprised your daughters husband hasn't left her yet. Seems she has no good long term relationships.

    You may want to look up borderline personality disorder and see if she fits. People with Borderline (BPD) have a real problem having any good long term relationships. Seems like she does this to her friends and family...husband will be targeted too one day if he dares not dance to her tune.

    Please take care of yourself. This daughter sadly is not nice with good intentions and I feel badly for her future child, but there is nothing you can do about it. Please live a glorious rest of your life.
     
  12. RN0441

    RN0441 100% better than I was but not at 100% yet

    I just read your story. I am so sorry to hear that you are going through this. How awful.

    I would focus on the two children that ARE loving and good to you and limit contact with your daughter that is so mean.

    Good luck and take care of yourself.
     
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  13. SarahRose

    SarahRose New Member

    I looked up Borderline Personality, but I'm not sure that's a fit. Some of it fits, especially the uncontrollable rage, unpredictable moods that change in the blink of an eye, and a trail of unstable and broken relationships, and spends money like water and runs up huge debts all over the place.(frightening)............But she's not into self harm, does not seem to fear abandonment (she always lands on her feet and moves onto the next person, to use until she turns against them). She's not suicidal or into self harm.......I was surprised that her boyfriend proposed to her, as only the month before he'd gotten angry and said to her "I will not stay in an abusive relationship!".....For the 6 years before they got married, she had a 3 year affair (he doesn't know about it. Instead, to cover her tracks, she told him that the guy had been stalking her), she bashed her boyfriend (now husband) numerous times, and trashed his place several times . (kicked holes in the wall, and ripped all the photos off the walls and counter tops and smashed them (broken glass) all over the house. She's come to my place and tried to say he was abusing her, but he sent a photo of his arm, with a bruise the size of an orange and said she had done that to him. Then she admitted to me that he's never hit her...Then she got this weird look on her face and said "If he ever hits me back, can I go to the police?"....Her husband is just the nicest man you could ever meet, and we are all mystified as to why he went ahead and married her. I did threaten to tell him, if she didn't quit the affair. She was furious with me and did No Talkies for 3 months, saying to me "Have some respect for my relationship!" She was sitting tossing up between her boyfriend (whom she'd been living with for 6 years) and the other guy, but the day her boyfriend got a huge promotion and a massive pay increase, she decided she really did love him best of both of them....The other poor fellow, lived in another city and had no idea she had a partnerI He thought they were going to get married and have a family, and she dumped him on the spot, the day her boyfriend got a promotion. He was devastated, and she said "Boo hoo hoo. I'm not responsible for your happiness"....I DO know she shames her husband and turns things around so that he's made to feel like it's HIS fault she got so angry. He's forever apologizing. The most he's ever done is physically restrain her, because she is violent......She came home one day, in a bad mood and he was peacefully sitting on the sofa and she came up behind him with her bike helmet in her hand, and raised it to smash him in the head. He looked up at the last minute, in horror, and managed to shield himself...............Yes, she is a very dangerous person, in every way......But if I find out she is abusing her child, I will report her, and seek custody of the child. Otherwise, my intention is to avoid her. I will do what you all strongly suggest, and focus on my own life and be happy. All I want in life, is to live in peace. That's it. That's my highest aspiration.....I think my daughter is a Sociopath. :-(
     
  14. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    I was going to say she sounds worse than borderline.

    If she abuses her kid, maybe hub will leave and he would get custody first. If that doesn't make him leave, something is wrong with him too. You would think he would have left the first time she put a hole in his wall. And then the helmet and the physical violence...I wonder why he stays.

    Stay away from this daughter. You will probably pay a steep price if you don't.
     
  15. SarahRose

    SarahRose New Member

    I am really hoping, if she is an unfit mother, that he will leave and take the child with him. There is something very very wrong with my daughter.......Thank you for listening to me. You've all helped, more than you can imagine. And yes, I will keep my distance from her, as I have an ominous feeling in my gut, about what the future holds with my daughter, now there's a baby on the way.
     
  16. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    I am coming in on the end of this, but your daughter is VERY dangerous! If you are in the US, I STRONGLY suggest that you contact your local domestic violence shelter for some free counseling. I don't know what is offered in other countries, but I know in the US your situation would qualify. You would get help for free from a domestic violence center. This would include help for the PTSD from the things she has done to you in the past and help to realize that you don't have to put up with her behavior.

    You are FAR from a bad mother when you speak out about her behavior. If anything, you are being a proactive and wonderful grandmother. You are learning what you need to do to become stronger so that you can be strong enough to keep her child safe from her.

    Your instincts are right. Your daughter is dangerous. She is likely NOT borderline. The vile and violent things she has done just to you are at least symptomatic of Conduct Disorder if not a clear sign of being a sociopath. She sure seems to use you for what she wants.

    If nothing else, any and every time she contacts you, tell her that you won't stand for her behavior, that she is rude and ungrateful. Tell her that you won't tolerate her abuse. If you can, go to the police and tell them what she has done to you, and how she has damaged your home. Ask what you must do to get a restraining order to keep her from coming to your home.

    It is time to start protecting yourself. YOU MATTER. It really is OK to take steps to protect yourself, even if you take them before the next crisis happens. Just imagine what she will be like postpartum. What if her husband takes the baby and tells her to get out? It would be good to have a restraining order in place before she even thinks of trying to come over. Her problems are NOT yours, and it IS okay to let her figure out how to solve her own problems. It is actually very healthy for both of you.
     
  17. SarahRose

    SarahRose New Member

    Hi Susiestar. You are right, that if things go pear-shaped with her marriage, she will arrive on my doorstep with both bags packed by her side, crying and expecting me to take her in. That has already been her pattern when she and her partner fight. (all fights that she started) One time, when she was trashing the house, he locked her outside. I had to do that with her, too................... I let her stay a few times, the first few times, then realized what was going on, and started sending her home EVERY SINGLE TIME. .....She says later, that their fights just mean they have 'passion' ...............Anyway, you are right, she'd definitely turn up here, if he left or kicked her out. I need to pre-empt that happening................You women are so wise. I'm glad I joined this forum. You have already taught me so much, and helped me to move out of this place of feeling guilty, obligated and disloyal.........I'm actually in a lot of physical pain, I injured my neck yesterday (pinched nerve), so will just keep this short. But thank you. I keep coming back and re-reading everything you have all said, and really letting it sink in......Suziestar, your cat Captain Morgan sounds really cute!
     
  18. magnolia26

    magnolia26 ... the sound of an iron trap door closing ...

    I'm sorry for what you're going through. In my experience, when you know the disposition of the individual, all of the things that you're concerned about or worried about will come to pass if you allow them to come to pass. That is, yes, it is most likely that she will use the baby against you. I am sorry you're in this situation. The best you can do is to continue to keep those boundaries and not allow her emotional manipulation when the baby comes. My husband has this situation with one of his daughters and, to his great pain, it means he has to accept he will not have the relationship he wants with that grandchild.
     
  19. SarahRose

    SarahRose New Member

    Hi Magnolia. Yes, it's certainly looking that way. My daughter is already letting me know how it' going to be. She is hosting an Easter family get together at her place, to formally announce her pregnancy (not everyone in the family knows about the pregnancy yet). Everyone is invited (even her step mother whom she hates), except me. I've been coldly told to stay away. I am not welcome.
     
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  20. SeekingStrength

    SeekingStrength Well-Known Member

    SarahRose,

    Please think of something really fun that you'd like to do during that get-together and do it. If it means going out of town for an overnight hotel stay, just go! Take a book, see a movie, whatever sounds fun. I hope you think hard about treating yourself extra wonderfully right now.

    Stay with us.

    I agree with SWOT; you sound like a very sweet human.


    Hugs,
    SS