AWOL Again...


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So it's now been 12 days since we last saw difficult child or heard from him (not replying to us in text or Facebook, not posting on Facebook). Just disappeared into oblivion. Well, we've all ridden this turnip truck before. It could mean many things. All we know is that when he disappears, it's never a good sign.

Some of my old emotions around this are similar -- disappointment, sadness, frustration.

But some of my emotions are new -- more easily detached, observing more, intermittent gratitude for the good days we did have. Wish it was constant gratitude, but at least it's intermittent. :) The more days that pass, the more my gratitude regains footing.

Re: difficult child --- Haven't tried to locate him or contact him in over a week. Not planning to for however long feels good. Got insurance matters clarified and we do not have to pay for his Intensive Out-Pt rehab (IOP). We already paid for his In-Pt rehab. Water under the bridge now. Gave it a shot. Feel good about that. Not gonna pay for it next time, though. Also feel good about that.

Re: Me --- As it's been 8 years since I've spent this much time around difficult child (except the last 2 weeks), I wanted to honestly observe/assess how it "felt" inside me to be around difficult child -- the ups and the downs. Discovered the "ups" between me and difficult child were improved a small bit (a thing to be grateful for). Discovered the "downs" inside of me were more quickly moved past (also a thing to be grateful for). However, I write today because I discover that it took 12 full days of me having ZERO contact with difficult child before I felt the "toxic-ness" of our relationship largely out of me. Good to note for reference and understanding myself a little better (regardless of whatever difficult child does).....also for certain kinds of boundaries.

Re: husband --- I knew difficult child always took a toll on husband, but over the last 2-3 weeks husband has really been expressing how hard difficult child is on him. All the years of toll it took on him. All the disappointment he feels around trying to have a relationship with our "sketchy" son. husband tends to be less verbal than I about his emotions (in general). But it's been good for husband and me to share our feelings more deeply. The best thing I ever did was to marry husband. He is the brightest light in my life. :)

In conclusion ---- Where is difficult child doing now? I dunno. What is he doing? I dunno. Why is he hiding and shunning contact? I dunno. Been here before, know this drill well.

We love him and are always keeping a prayer for his health and happiness. However, as we also value our health and happiness, we will not be following him down the rabbit hole -- it's just too bizarro of a warped reality down there.

We'll speak again when difficult child emerges and his intermittently fleeting window of sanity opens up again (it'll happen -- it always does)....

Intermittently, it was a good month after he completed rehab (our best month in 8 years -- possibly our best month ever). So we are thankful for those fleeting days -- whatever the future brings.


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I'm sorry he has done this again. You are doing a wonderful job of growing from your recent experiences...looking at them, considering them, talking about them with husband (and letting him talk too), posting. This is the stuff of strength and wisdom, of a good life, a life well lived.

You are a warrior mom. Blessings on you and your family today and all days.


Scent of Cedar *

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We love him and are always keeping a prayer for
his health and happiness. However, as we also
value our health and happiness, we will not be following
him down the rabbit hole -- it's just too bizarro of a
warped reality down there.

This is a stunningly appropriate assessment of our situations with our difficult child kids. "'s just too bizarro of a warped reality down there."

"However, as we also value our own health and happiness, we will not be following him down the rabbit hole...."

"We love him, and are always keeping a prayer for his health and happiness...."

My hope for and my wish for you, headlights mom, is that you and husband will hear soon that all is well with your son. As for me, I am thinking about copying these words from your post and putting them on my fridge.

Thank you.

I get too much into some place where I think I should have been able to help someone else not go where they are determined, or at the least, are not able to help themselves, from going.

That's how I fall into the rabbit hole.

I love the part about holding a prayer for the (adult) child's health and happiness, but refusing to follow them into the rabbit hole.

Refusing to follow is an act of will, something we must (I must, anyway) give ourselves permission to do.


Scent of Cedar *

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The never ending dance. It is wonderful and so
empowering that you are able to sit this one out.

I love this, pasajes. That imagery of the never ending dance, and of husband and I choosing to sit this particular dance out. Not forever, and not out of anger or to force the desired response from someone else, but just to sit this one, particular dance out.

This is very strengthening imagery.



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Staff member
I'm sorry HLM. We were all hoping along with you that this would be the tide changer.

As I was reading your post, I thought to myself, this is life, the sort of richness of it all, the ups and downs, the smooth waters, then the rough waters..........and you roll with it all like an expert surfer, determined to make it a good ride, no matter what. I admire your ability to stay on the middle road, it speaks to your alignment with what is. I read a line the other day which fits your post, "we suffer when we argue with what is." You stopped arguing and you move to acceptance quickly........avoiding a lot of suffering along the way. Good for you.


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"we suffer when we argue with what is."
Yes, I need to carry this with me. This is the source of my angst. I argue with what is even about myself. I am what I am. I can't force my being to be what others expect of me, even if that version would be more pleasing or successful, according to their standards. Why do I expect my son to do what I myself will not do.


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MWM -- Yes, clean for a month after rehab.

Echo -- Thanks....feeling more "Warrior Mom-ish" this morning than last night. :)

P4 -- Yep, a never-ending dance, for sure. Quite the dance marathon it is, no? :) And I'm right there with ya....arguing with myself is my biggest source of conflict, too. That's why I'm trying to learn that "Radical Acceptance" thang better. Getting there one day at a time.

RE --- Thanks so much for your kind words. difficult child ebbs and flows. So do I. Maybe it's a tide changer for difficult child in the long run. Who knows. Speculation is a moot point. But, in some ways, it's a tide changer for me and husband. So, something good has, does, is coming from it. :)

Thank you all for your kind words!


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HLM, I am sorry. I was rooting for him too. We never know when that moment of clarity will come; maybe this time he will get it.

I so admire you for the way you take everything in stride, the way you can be grateful for the good moments and learn from the good and the bad, for next time.


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Albatross -- Thanks so much for your kind words of support. And you're absolutely never knows what tomorrow brings (or today, for that matter!).

As for taking everything in stride........well, that's hit-and-miss. Some days I rock at it. Some days I struggle with it. This weekend I struggled. These weekdays, I rock. I'm growing more comfortable with my "discomfort", if that makes any sense. RADICAL ACCEPTANCE...........a work in progress!

Thing is, there's always (well, ok, usually!) a positive in there somewhere. If nothing else, I consider it a positive that our entire family is still alive and kickin'.

Hope all is well in your neck of the woods, Albatross. :)