But, how do YOU feel?

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by BackintheSaddle, Jan 19, 2014.

  1. BackintheSaddle

    BackintheSaddle Active Member

    Hello All- I've been on here about a month (aka JakesMom) and recently went through a crisis that is continuing...I know all of you are in various stages of dealing with much the same thing...it's interesting though that any post I read focuses on the difficult child and not on you guys-- the parent...and I was wondering how you FEEL when you're going through these things? are you able to function (I just went to get groceries and it was all I could do not to sob every time I went down an aisle that had a favorite of my difficult child's that I normally would have bought)? do you go to work everyday and pretend all is ok? I feel so mopey and sad...Friday I just couldn't face work and laid on the couch all day watching 'feel good' movies...my husband (father who adopted my difficult child at age 3) is so tired of seeing me crying and moping, not wanting to cook (can't remember the last time I cooked us a meal-- I do have a roast in the slow cooker today though!)....how do you feel? when you 'take care' of yourself through all of this, what kinds of things do you do?
  2. SuZir

    SuZir Well-Known Member

    How I feel? Depends on the day. Some days quite well, some, not so. During acute crisis, like you are now, there have been moments, when just breathing in and out with some regularity has been a fitting goal for me. Nights, when four hours of sleep and only waking up three times a night for a nightmare has been considered a good night. Outside I tend to go 'stiff upper lip'-route.

    I'm functioning. I make myself go to work every day. I do smile and act 'normal.' I do make all the household chores as usual. I have my own interests and pursuits and don't give them up. So my way to cope is mainly keep going and keeping busy. And running. I run a lot. Five to ten miles almost daily. When things were emotionally really bad for me last spring, I even took into the cleaning (I'm not a fan normally, especially not arranging closets), but you can bet that by the summer there was not uncleaned place in this house (and it is an old, big house.) I didn't dare to stop, because I wasn't sure if I would have gotten up again, if I would had just let myself get immersed to those feelings.

    Right now we are not in an acute crisis (though I do have a bad gut feeling) and it is much easier to actually enjoy things.

    But everyone copes differently. What works for one, may not work for others. And I'm first to admit my coping mechanisms are not always the healthiest ones. But I'm still standing.

    I think that good universal advice would be to try to eat well, sleep well, exercise, try to do things that bring you joy or to make you forget bad things for the moment. Try to take care of sleep and eating patterns etc. And find someone outside of family and friends you can talk to (I would prefer a professionals because of professional confidentiality. Many like support groups too.)
  3. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Hi there.

    How about "dating" your husband again? Do you have any hobbies you enjoy that you could do in a group, such as rug hooking? Any interest in church? Join a Bible study for friendship. Want to take a class at school? Interested in animals? Get involved in rescue. Like kids and want to have them around? Try foster parenting little ones that will not remind you of your son because they are small. Volunteer at elementary school. Can you afford a vacation with your sweetheart? Start a workout routine, get fit, eat right and do it for yourself.

    If you really need to talk about your son, join a support group such as a twelve step group or NAMI or just a therapy group for women. Re-connect with friends who are kind to you and relatives who are not like your parents, if there are any (I have pretty nasty DNA connections so I rely on friends to be my real family).

    I also found solace in self-help reading, especially about the art of mindfulness. I meditate. I'm not great at it, but can do guided meditation and I feel wonderful afterward.

    The most important thing I was ever told (and I couldn't do it at first) was to learn to detach. It is one thing if our children are ill and it is not their faults, such as a child being in the hospital due to something beyond his control. When our adult children make horrible and even criminal decisions and/or refuse to get help, it is sometimes helpful only to detach from their drama and their mean words and deeds. You have to remember (as do all of us...not always easy) that you are not your son. What he does and if he suffers, it is due to his decisions and you can still be happy because you are not him nor can you change or control him. Getting an ulcer over him will not make things better for him and will only stress you out and you won't be good for anyone, including your son, if you are no longer healthy. He has assaulted you and blamed you for it and I'm not sure there is anything you can do to make t hat better other than to decide to engage him when he is kind to you AND not asking for things from you, and to learn to be emotionally aloof when he is deriding you, asking for entitlements for himself, or verbally/physically abusing you. When my 36 year old is nice to me, I will talk to him for as long as he likes. The minute he starts with the abuse, I say, "I'm sorry, but you have to respect me to talk to me" and I hang up and usually don't answer for the rest of the day. That gives him a cool down time. And I can go on with my life. Our kids don't have a special free pass to abuse us just because they are our kids.

    Parent abuse is on the rise.
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2014
  4. BackintheSaddle

    BackintheSaddle Active Member

    thanks so much!....but MWM, how do you feel when these things happen in your family? I love riding horses- we have 3- and it is awesome therapy but it is so muddy and cold here that it's not possible...I should make myself go to work tomorrow but I tend to be the person people stop by and visit to tell me THEIR problems with no concern about mine (I'm a supervisor) and their problems, frankly, ain't nothing compared to my recent ones...I have been constantly reading and have numerous books on 'difficult kids' and got one this week I really like called 'I am not sick, I don't need help' (really good stuff in it) but I'm soooooo tired of thinking about and processing it!---I have clinical depression I take medications for and usually I'm a happy, optimistic, ready to get up and go do most anything kind of girl....now I can hardly drag myself out of bed each day...
    my son emailed me today to see if I want to meet for breakfast tomorrow (after he refused to go see a therapist with me because he doesn't want to deal with family drama!)...our agreement is that if we meet once a week for a visit, I'll give him $20 for gas to and from school (I was actually betting he wouldn't contact me directly-- based on his comments, spending time with me is worth more than $20 of his time)...so is he just wanting to meet to get the money? I haven't responded but am thinking I won't for now...I'm not up to seeing him and I'm definitely not up to giving him money this week...
    I know detachment is the way to go and you have such great advice MWM but the process of doing that with your child (my one and only) seems like more than i can handle...just wondered if it was just me that gets too overwhelmed with grief
  5. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    I feel stressed and sad. But I have also learned to take care of myself, regardless. Sometimes I don't want to leave t he house. I just want to stay angry or cry like a baby. If I make myself go out, I always feel better afterward. And after a bad conversation with, say, 36, who is the grown child likely to be abusive, I used to feel hurt, but I just blow it off now (honest!). I think, "Man, he's unhappy, but I'm not going to let his temporary bad thoughts ruin my day. I have a husband, other kids, and a life to live and I won't let him bring me down with him."

    Sometimes I just get so disgusted I wish he'd never call me again, but my one promise to all my kids are...I will NEVER not speak to you or toss you to the dogs if you are speaking to me respectfully. I will never disown you completely. If YOU disown ME, I will accept it and you can expect me to behave as if I don't exist to you so don't ask me for anything or expect anything, however I will never do that to you first.

    But you do have to speak to me with respect and without just wanting something from me or else you do not get the privilege of speaking to me. 36 is, after all, 36 already. Age is not an excuse. He knows how I feel and if I don't stick to it, he is far worse. Lately, since his custody battle is over and he won, he is under far less stress and when he is stressed he is mean and scary. But he's been pretty good of late!
  6. aud

    aud Member

    I go back n forth..sometimes I can't hardly function and sometimes I push myself. I have to always remind myself my other adult kids need to see a more upbeat mom bc I finally see what all this dysfunction has done to them.

    Sent using ConductDisorders mobile app
  7. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    BITS, I understand the feelings you are talking about. My difficult child is also my only child and for awhile I felt all of the hopelessness, lethargy, sorrow and, lack of any kind of initiative or inspiration.........AND, there are certainly things you can do to make a difference with all of that..............however, the one thing that I believe is very important to address is that you are in a grieving process now............grief is something that has it's own trajectory, it's own time and it's own purpose. We live in a culture which doesn't give folks time to grieve, someone dies and a week or two later people are saying, "hey, get over yourself and get out there."

    This is a devastating blow to a parent, to have to detach from the person we love the very most and almost just as difficult, to let go of the person we so hoped and in fact planned on, him being............in other words, OUR dreams for our children.

    We also have to let go of control.

    I was in despair for awhile and I believe the only thing you can do about it is to feel it, allow it and when you are ready, to move on. Feeling it will move it more quickly through your own system, many of us push it down and try NOT to feel it, but it will erupt in other ways..........anger for instance, or low grade depression. So, cry. I cried truckloads of tears for the loss of my daughter, for the loss of my dreams for my daughter, for the relationship we don't have, for the relationships she doesn't have with anyone, for the life she lives................for all of it. It's okay to feel all of that and for as long as you need to. In fact, in order to find peace, I believe you must feel it.

    Detachment is a process, it takes time and effort and a commitment on our part to stay the course. It is extremely sad and brings up all sorts of feelings that are difficult to articulate. There are few who understand so we are pretty much alone with all our feelings. It's all okay BITS, it is the nature of this process............I always say it was the hardest thing I have ever done............ever. But, here I am......I walked through that fire, like a lot of us here on the PE forum................it just takes time. Where you are is part of the detachment process.......it is very much like grieving a death. Generally, we follow the "5 stages of grief"...........denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance. (http://grief.com/the-five-stages-of-grief/) Not in a linear fashion, any of those feelings can surface at any time in any order. Give yourself time..............

    While I was in the midst of the worst time, I enrolled myself in an 18 month long codependency program in a huge HMO here in Northern California, lead by therapists. I had weekly therapy and a weekly support group with other parents who were also devastated and grieving. It was a life saver, probably the single most important thing I did for myself. I attended CoDa groups as much as I could and continued to tell my story and get feedback and support. I went to acupuncture once a week which significantly reduced my stress and worry. I upped my exercise. If you can get out there for at least 11 minutes, just walking, you will change your brain chemistry and feel a tad better. I took a very good quality Omega-3 supplement which has been studied extensively to assist with depression and is excellent for the whole body. I avoided sugar, alcohol and anything which promotes inflammation in the body, and concentrated on eating a very good, healthy diet. I made sure that everyday I did something kind and comforting for ME. I made every attempt to put the focus on myself and take it off of my daughter. I read books that others recommended. I meditate............which if you can do for just 10 minutes a day will change much in your life and bring more of a sense of peace. I made peace of mind my goal...........and acceptance.

    I have read that the average length of grief, generally speaking, is 2 years. My own process of detaching from my daughter, the intense part, was about that. Not to say I was in the pits all the time, I had fun and played and laughed and lived............but that looming sorrow was always there, lurking in the background of my life.......ready to come forth at any time...............and then, after going through all of that and thinking it would really never end, it would just be my life from now on.................it all lifted one day................

    I think now that we just have to go through it. My therapist used to say, "you'll get through it when you get through it." It takes the self blame or self cruelty away, the part of us that says, "I should be able to be over this now, what is wrong with me?" There is nothing wrong, this is one helluva devastating process which unless you are going through it yourself, folks just don't know what it's like. There are few supports for us...............so we can torture ourselves on two fronts......................one, I'm detaching from my kid and two, what's wrong with me that I can't get over that? Geez. Since most of us are enablers and NOT kind to ourselves anyway, we can now use this against ourselves too. Don't do that. Rest calmly in the truth that this is probably going to be the hardest thing you ever do............cry, make room for all of your feelings, hang out with people who will look at you with empathy and compassion and hold your hand without judging you.............do very kind things for yourself, have your nails done, get massages, go for long walks, appreciate the beauty in your life...............start a gratitude journal............go on Youtube and search for guided meditations for solace and peace and listen to them everyday.............get foot rubs.............pray..........put one foot in front of the other on those bad days and know that this too will pass............and then one day, you will wake up and feel pretty good, in spite of all of the circumstances.............you will have found acceptance of what is...............which changes everything.

    We're here for you, you're not alone.............hang in there, you'll get through this. We'll help you.
  8. Terryforvols

    Terryforvols Member

    When i finally detached from my difficult child who is 29 and has a drug issue AND got used go it i felt a lot more peace. I have had long term depression 24yrs and prozac stopped working this spring during a down time so saw a psychiatric and got changed to Lexapro and Adderall XR which helped immensely. Also have a great therapist who i see prn.

    I also work in a small md office with wonderful friends. My job and those people have been lifesavers! When i do have down crying spells they encourage me and keep me going

    Most of all my faith in God has saved me. He gets me and husband thru bad days which have been many recently. Our 17 yo nephew was killed Nov 1 in a car accident. It really put in perspective our pain with difficult child and the pain my brother in law and sister in law are in. He was a great kid a true easy child. At least we still have difficult child. Believe me i had a lot of guilt bc i always felt difficult child would die of an od but not him. That has been a struggle again leaning on faith.

    The housework.......well my motivation there is ????? :)
  9. Scent of Cedar *

    Scent of Cedar * Well-Known Member

    Detachment feels like letting go of guilty, terminal, unending, responsibility. It feels like understanding there is a way to retake control of my own life, and that I will get there. To do that, to be able to let go of responsibility, I am learning to accept myself as a mother whose children are not doing well.

    I don't know how to do that.

    That is the source of my continued enabling, of my depression. Who am I, what kind of mother, of person, of grandmother, am I, when my family looks nothing like what I wanted and worked for.

    What happened here is the question that keeps me hooked in. If I could find it I could fix it. I need to learn to let go, and I don't know how to do that, either.

    I am still not sure how to get out of this trap, how to learn to see myself as separate and okay when everything I believe about separate and okay has to do with family. It is so hard to stay present in the face of what happens.

    It has to do with seeing the kids as adults.

    There is an excellent post on the detachment thread this morning. That mom has it down clearly enough that she can communicate it to us.

  10. Scent of Cedar *

    Scent of Cedar * Well-Known Member

    I'm sorry. You didn't ask about detachment. You wanted to know what it feels like when we are in the crisis place, and how to help yourself.

    It helped me to have faith that my child was going to make it.

    "Faith is not, contrary to the usual ideas, something that turns out right or wrong, like a gambler's bet. It is an act, an intention, a project; something that makes you, in leaping into the future, go so far, far ahead that you shoot clean out of Time and right into Eternity, which is not the end of Time or unending Time, but timelessness, that old, Eternal Now."

    It helped me to learn to manage my emotions. These books are especially helpful in learning both the value and the technique.

    The Power of Now Eckhardt Tolle
    Simple Abundance Sarah Ban Breathnak

    Brene Brown has a series of books out about emotional vulnerability and staying present. I cannot think of the names, right now. If you google TED talks/Brene Brown, you will see a twenty minute presentation that will give you the flavor of her work.

    Cultivate gratitude. List five things, every night before you go to bed, that you are grateful for. This practice will change your life.

    As the others have suggested, make the conscious choice to care for and to take good care of, yourself. Whether consciously or not, you may find a tendency to feel that if you suffer enough, your son will stop doing what he is doing. Watch for that tendency. Make the conscious, determined choice to choose joy over suffering.

    Again, fake it til you make it.

    Cherish yourself. Deciding to buy the shoes or begin the exercise class or
    whatever the good thing is teaches us that we are not going to choose suffering.
    I still have a horrible problem with cherishing myself in those ways. I still think that somehow, if I suffer enough, this will all go away. I am confronted with that every time I go shopping. I wonder whether there is something like that at work when you are grocery shopping? Believing that on any level runs the continuum from the least helpful to the one of the most harmful things you can do.

    I need to work on that. I need to choose something better for myself than what I have, on so many levels.

    Understand the value in modeling health, and in modeling healthy acceptance.

    Acknowledge that what you and your family are going through is one of the cruelest things that can happen to a family. Begin to cherish your family for its strength, for the miracle of its functioning. Appreciate the wonder of what you have created. Define your family as good and strong, as healthy, high-functioning people. This is so important. How you define yourselves to yourselves will play a big part in determining the flavor of whatever happens next.

    When the times are especially hard, that old adage about faking it til you make it is excellent advice. You need to go about cherishing yourself and your life with determined intent. Loving your horses will be a wonderful way to begin that. Cherish your husband. Be so glad you have him in your life. You might have been going through this alone. Befriend him. Allow him truly to befriend you. Make a space for joy, a space for your relationship to flourish.

    Decide to come out of this better together than you would have been had you not faced down this challenge together.

    None of this is your fault. None of this is your responsibility. It may well be that there was never anything you could have done about it, even if you'd known this was coming.

    What it boils down to is deciding there is no value in suffering. You are in a difficult situation.

    There is no value in suffering.

    There is value in cherishing and in thinking well of yourself. There is value in seeing this as some really weird thing that should never have happened to you, or to your family.

    Be angry about it.

    There are so many blamers out there, all looking for what went wrong. You need to concentrate on all that is right. Again, this will be something you do by determined choice.

    In case you don't already know it, here is the Serenity Prayer.

    God, grant me the Serenity to accept the things I cannot change
    The Courage to change the things I can
    And the Wisdom to know the difference.

    As someone here once told me, read it until it works. I did that, when it was given to me. I read and reread it, as was suggested.

    It does work. It will give you a place to stand up again.

    Mostly, you will survive it through your own determined intent to survive it. When you are sad, you will need to learn to acknowledge and then, counter those feelings. Once the shock is worn off, you will need to choose whether you are going to let what has happened with your boy define your life, or whether you are going to love your boy and your life. It is as bald as that. You will have to choose your emotional reality. If you note self-destructive tendencies, you will need to choose whether and how to counter them.

    It isn't easy, it isn't pretty, and it should never have happened to you, your child, or your family.

    But it has.

    I agree with Recovering that we go through the stages of grief over and over as we come to peace with what has happened. To Recovering's assessment, I would add that when we have lost someone to death, there is a certain amount of community support and acknowledgment. The pain of the loss diminishes with time. For us, there is no support. Though we are grieving a living loss, there is condemnation, whether secret or overt. There is vulnerability, loss of reputation, shame.


    The only way I know to survive it is to choose to. Cold acceptance, determined intent. Once you've done that? Refuse to allow the horror of what is happening to define you.

    Laughter really is the best medicine.

    Counter the horror of with everything you have. Your son is making choices. If he was afraid, if he felt truly unsafe, if he really did not like where he was or what he was doing or who he was with, he would change it. That is how you can know he is doing this by choice. You cannot stop him.

    But you can choose to survive what he is doing to you.

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  11. CrazyinVA

    CrazyinVA Well-Known Member Staff Member

    There were times, when things were at their worst, when I felt a lot like you described. I could barely function. I cried. I felt hopeless. My house was a mess. I neglected paying bills, I started forgetting appointments. It got so bad I finally saw a psychiatrist and got on antidepressants. I also started seeing a therapist just to talk through it all. I really don't know how I could have coped without both those in place - the fog finally lifted, and I was able to find more strength to do what needed to be done.

    Work was my respite, in a way. It was tough sometimes, but it kept my mind occupied and just being away from the house full of drama was a relief. I threw myself into social outings for respite, too (sometimes too much - I just didn't want to go home after work).

    It's emotionally and physically draining - but sometimes getting that low can be the turning point for finally learning to take care of yourself. Once you have the strength to do that, it's easier to find the strength needed for detachment. And that takes enormous strength, and practice -- it took me years to develop the skills I use today. Sometimes I worry I'm so detached people take me for hard-hearted - those that haven't known what I've been through, anyway. Just the other day I cracked a joke about how there was no way I could keep my grandkids for more than a couple days, I'd go insane -- and got a strange look from someone. But, I know what I have to do (and not do) for me.
  12. Echolette

    Echolette Well-Known Member

    How does it feel...good question. It feels like drowning to me, like I am falling, like I want to die. Its awful. What do I do about it? I do have a little toolbox of self care...I light candles (and Cedar reminded me to think about lighting one specifically for my difficult child) all over the house. I put on music, which always cheers me up. I am best off if I can actually run and keep to a meditation (20 miutes/day) schedule, but often I cannot, and sometimes running turns into mental hell, where every pounding step is a self- or difficult child-accusatory shout in my head. So that CAN work but not always. And...I am a big big believer in health. REgular sleep, and enough of it. Regular meals that are healthy, no binges, few carbs with the resultant insulin swings. Lots of water. NOt too much booze (I do drink a lot). Sometimes I cry to my SO...often I read these pages. Thats what I do when things are bad. I hope that helps.
  13. pasajes4

    pasajes4 Well-Known Member

    I used to feel overwhelmed, sad, angry, guilty, ashamed, desperate, anxious, worthless, stupid.........I could go on. My son is 17 and in bad shape. I read a book that changed my life. The title of the book is THE FOUR AGREEMENTS. I do not remember the authors name. I now focus on the only person I have any control over...me. I no longer wring my hands when he choses chaos over order.
  14. Echolette

    Echolette Well-Known Member

    We can't control the behavior of other people, we can only control our own reactions. I suspect that is a trope in a lot of places..I got it through Buddhism, and it is one of the things I turn to most often when I am crazed, about difficult child or anyone else. Our difficult child's aren't the only challenges!!
  15. BackintheSaddle

    BackintheSaddle Active Member

    (I have lost 2 replies I started....ugh!)....wanted to say thank you for writing...it's helpful to hear from others to know I'm not beyond help...I'm an avid reader so will look up all your book suggestions and check into them...I'm feeling a lot better this week after telling the difficult child I wasn't up to seeing him this week (and giving him his $20 as payment) since he doesn't want to spend the effort on going to a therapist with me...I'm searching for things to do for myself-- yoga, classes, etc...finding my footing for now, though I'm sure the rocky waters will stir things up again...thanks again for all your input, it's really helpful
  16. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    It is like many things...almost gut wrenching at first, but it gets easier with time. As it continues, IF it continues, you tend to get fed up and less interested in the day-to-day drama of your grown child unless you are the type who feels he/she must put up with abuse and care for even a fifty year old child, which I find very sad...a sad life for parent and the child.

    I've been at this a long time. 36, who is by far my hardest child, was like this forever. So when he reverts back to being abusive, it is not hard to pull away until the episode is finished.

    I imagine it must be harder if you only have one child. I have often thanked the Good Lord that we decided to adopt children after 36. He could well have been my only child and I think it would have been much harder to detach from my only one. But maybe not...he can be pretty horrible and then I just don't want to hear his voice....
  17. Scent of Cedar *

    Scent of Cedar * Well-Known Member

    This is true, about learning to accept the loss of the dream child and get a little bored with what the real one is doing. We were well on the path to healing (I even, believe it or not, was able to stop coming here for a time!) before difficult child daughter's breakdown.

    Though this has been bad, it has not been the personal devastation of difficult child daughter's teen years or difficult child son's drug addiction and multiple relapses. We do learn survival tools, here on the site. I am working so hard to reach that place where I love myself enough to accept what has happened with both kids without condemnation. That is the hard part. To see what is for what it is without judging either ourselves or the kids.

    I understand that this can happen.

    I am not there, yet. Reaching deeply enough to acknowledge what is happening in a balanced, healthy way means reworking our own psychological stuff.


    It's not like we get to choose to just ignore everything, though.

  18. BackintheSaddle

    BackintheSaddle Active Member

    To see what is for what it is without judging either ourselves or the kids.

    Read more: http://www.conductdisorders.com/community/threads/but-how-do-you-feel.56256/#ixzz2rB3ymI3K

    As I was reading to catch up with the discussions today, I was struck by how many were saying they are embarrassed by their kids-- what it says about us as parents that our kids are mean, bullies, don't take responsibility for themselves, abusive, telling anyone they talk to how all their troubles in life are from their awful childhood and parents. I've been embarrassed a lot, which is why we all feel so isolated I suppose. I have a friend who has a daughter at Duke University, studying to be a physician and she tries to make me feel better by saying her and her daughter went through the same things as what I'm experiencing now. Her daughter is a easy child-- that child would never get in her face and scream at her, blame her for her own problems, not study because she can't handle the stress of thinking about the test, nearly flunking out of high school (one of my most embarrassing moments was that we didn't know until 2 days before he was to graduate that he made it!--- so I had to tell a lot of my friends he might not make it)...see, I have a PhD and most of my friends are highly educated (so their children are doctors, veterinarians, etc) while mine, I can't even live with mine. People who are 'sort of' friends (close enough I might tell them about an incident but not tell them alot of details) and I tell them any one event we've gone through with Jacob, look at me so funny-- almost like they think I must be exaggerating, making it up, misinterpreting what happened...it can't be THAT bad!....but you all know it can be...you've lived it as long or longer than I have keeping it a secret how hard life was at home...there have been a lot of days where I dreaded getting home after work, and now I don't have to worry about that anymore...another blessing today!...;-)
  19. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    BITS, I can relate to what you are saying. On my FB page are many people I went to HS with on the East Coast who are mostly high achievers who raised high achievers. Periodically, one will mention something their adult child has accomplished. One time an old friend posted an article about her son who is a Doctor who invented some remarkable technology for the medical field which will help millions and make him millions. My first thought at the time was, "great, my daughter, the same age as this guy, is perhaps sleeping under a bridge tonight or in jail," it made me feel sad. When I got embarrassed was when she posted some really inappropriate sexual stuff on FB which my mother and some of my friends could see.

    What really helped me was humor............I would mention these things my difficult child did or said to my SO (who is a very funny guy) and invariably he would have some funny, usually outrageous remark which would make me laugh and that would take away the embarrassment and sort of even it all out somehow.............as if I could really see the absurdity of all of it and then let it go. I hardly feel any of that embarrassment anymore.............and if I do, I tell SO and he can almost always think of some hilarious response which puts an end to it. Humor is such a healing salve for a wounded or broken heart..................

    That reminds me of a old friend of mine who lives in New York City and is also a very funny woman...........once when she and I were chatting on the phone about our kids, she mentioned a friend of hers who has a easy child and a difficult child and this Mom's line about her kids is "My daughter is at Brown and my son is at Rykers." And everyone laughs.............I'm sure the Mom had her moments in hell as we have, but I admired that she could make it into something which makes her laugh and others laugh too.

    Another old HS friend has one child, a difficult child and it has ruined her life................completely................

    It is what it is, we can cry about it, be shamed about it, resent it, flip out about it, have it ruin our lives..........or we can accept it and look at it differently .........it takes time, but I believe we can get through it and bring joy back into our lives...........
  20. BackintheSaddle

    BackintheSaddle Active Member