Crazy update to wedding/friend thread


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I made up with my long term friend about not getting an invite to her son's wedding. I ordered a moderately priced gift from the registry. We are fine.

Background: it took her awhile to understand what it is like having a difficult child but, one day she tried to help difficult child and got burned. Between that and all my stories, she "gets it." And she has been very understanding, kind and supportive.

Flash forward: shortly after we spoke about the wedding "issue," she started relaxing again and let it be known that her husband was mad at me. She implied he wasn't being realistic about the wedding...but I was unsure what that meant. Kind of like blaming him. BUT she continued with that he also thinks I don't do enough for difficult child and that's why she is a difficult child! "but" she says..."I tried to explain to him what having a difficult child is really like...although he doesn't understand...."

Say what? Her spouse is going through a terrible time in his life having been unemployed for a few years....losing an excellent job, etc. BUT, doesn't that seem like a low blow????

Honestly, I don't know how much more I can take. I didn't say much, except that I'm glad she understands. Then quickly got off the phone.

Truth is stranger than fiction. I'm exhausted.i just hope our friendship can survive. Not sure if our/my relationship with him will.

Wiped Out

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I'm sorry he doesn't understand. It is so hard for people who don't have a difficult child to understand. I'm glad your friend understands. Sending hugs.


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Well, he's angry and his ego has taken a beating and I guess he has to take it out on someone!
He is totally, totally clueless.
I want to strangle him.
I guess I should wait until after the wedding ...

Calamity Jane

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Hi Nomad,
I guess sometimes opening up the clogged lines of communication works both ways. Maybe your friend wanted to resume that sort of intimate, tell-all feeling with you, and she overshared regarding her husband. I guess I'd kind of lay low for now, and keep things a little more superficial, if just to gain your bearings again. Otherwise it may lead to more "insult added to injury." Ugh...sorry for all this.

Scent of Cedar *

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I agree with those of us who have already posted, Nomad.

But I would also say that there are going to be times, and this is one of them, when we are faced with one of the costs of having a difficult child child.

Is it possible for you to remember Nomad, how long it took for you to accept the concept of detachment? Do you remember how bitterly you fought it before finally getting it that nothing, nothing you did was going to work, and the time it took after that to see that anything you did to help your child only made everything worse?

That's where your friend's husband is now, Nomad.

He is never going to understand...and he doesn't have to. In fact there is no way he could ever understand, because he does not have a difficult child child.

I think I would approach this by bringing the subject of your difficult child up the next time you are all together. I would talk about how scary it was to implement this new detachment theory of parenting, and about how well it is working

I would say something about how important it is for difficult child to learn to care for herself in the world before both you and husband are gone, and about how hard this has all been.

Though I would feel uncomfortable Nomad, I would welcome the opportunity to clarify my thoughts and actions regarding the way I have chosen to parent this troubled child.

In fact, your friend has been honest with you.

That is a rare and special thing.

If you discuss with her the reasoning behind your choice to parent using detachment theory, I think it will bring all of you closer.

You have nothing to be ashamed of or secretive about, Nomad.

Neither do I...though so often, I am.

It takes courage to share the truly horrific details of the lives our children live, and of what those choices have cost us. Not just financially, but in self concept, in self confidence, and in faith.

Only you can decide whether you value this friendship enough to share at that level, Nomad.

I'm sorry this is happening.

It is an opportunity for openness and growth...but that is a vulnerable place to be.

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To be honest I would let it go. Only because I know that no matter how understanding someone is they will never understand the reality of another persons life. Good bad or ugly unless I walk in your shoes forever I will never understand your actions completely.

Having said that. Its a shame he cant have more empathy.


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I always say what someone thinks of me is none of my business. I'm me and too darn bad if you don't like me. I have other things to do. Just smile you best fake smile at him. Don't give him any satisfaction that care one way or another.


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Thanks everyone. I'm experienced with having had to adopt the I don't give a xxxxx attitude about those who don't have a difficult child judging me. husband and I use to joke that we would not believe this xxxxx prior to having our own difficult child if someone told us these stories.

It's just that this came at the heels of the other difficult experience re the wedding and how it was NOT handled very well. I barely came up for air.

Long story...but I had to drop something off at their home.husband came with me. It went surprisingly well. I DID get the feeling that my friend spoke with her husband....maybe slowly, gently teaching him a tiny bit about gfgism.

He inquired something about difficult child and it hit me like a ton of bricks that my friend and I have been keeping him semi in the dark, as she is SURE it would be IMPOSSIBLE for him to understand what a difficult child is. She herself had great difficulty for a long time.....until she saw it first hand plus listened to my stories. per usual, I gave him the "sanitized" version of a recent difficult child incident. My friend and husband smiled at me knowingly. This is so NOT what I wish to do, but my friend wants it this way (at least for now) and I agree with her, it is VERY unlikely that he could grasp any of it.

I am freaking exhausted.

But, my friend and I are remain close and perhaps a little stronger as the result of the experience. Her husband is still able to live in a world where there are no difficult children contaminating it. Grrrr.

Bless all of you for your help. This was HARD. I appreciate the help.


one day at a time
I always say what someone thinks of me is none of my business.

I think this is the key. I remember hearing this in Al-Anon for the first time, and thinking WHAT? How can I not care what people think about me? But you know, unpack it, and it's really true.

People can think, and will think, whatever they want. It doesn't make it true. And you know what? I think things all the time that are fleeting thoughts and a lot of the time, that's all it is. Doesnt mean it's true or it even stays with me.

GFGland is full of friends/acquaintances/neighbors/coworkers/their former employers/people up and down the street who have an opinion about difficult child and people who have done things like difficult child has done. And they like to tell it loud and clear, that if THEIR kids ever did anything like this...blah blah blah.

They have no idea what they are talking about. I think we have to strike it up to just that.

They know not of which they speak.

I remember when I called my family, who lives out of state, to tell them ex-husband and I were getting separated. Later on, I asked my sister, what did Greg (her husband) say? (big mistake, stupid me).

She said (and I'll never forget how this struck me to the very core): He doesn't agree with it.

AGREE with it? What a thing to say. She of course, was speaking what SHE thought and out of her own fear. If my sister can get separated, could it happen to me?

That's what we do when we hear something that scares us. We pick it apart, turn it over and over, say loudly what WE would do, and then we separate ourselves from THESE PEOPLE, because we are terrified.

that's why this board is so wonderful. It's full of people who get it. Hang in there nomad. We get it, and you know what, a lot of other people just don't.

Still hurts I know, but they know not of which they speak.


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Yep. I'm experienced with this, as my difficult child is in her mid twenties. Been doing that for awhile now. I was just ???? that this kind of xxxxx came up immediately after the wedding debacle. my friend gets it, and I hoped her husband was coming around a tiny bit. But some people are VERY unlikely to "get it" ever and I suppose if they are in a bad mood etc.might try to use it as a weapon against you. However, as we all know here, they don't have a clue and I am pretty much bullet proof against it. But, it did bother me that it came up right as we all were recuperating from the sensitivity about the wedding...that was difficult to straighten out and took a lot of maturity, courage and love. This came out of left field and came at a bad time. And maybe it is partially our fault as my friend (his wife) doesn't like it if we tell him the entire truth about difficult child and her "incidents." He is likely to misinterpret it as we aren't doing enough for her, we are gossiping about her, she has unkind parents...blah blah blah. It is a no win situation with him and my friend (his wife) prefers to tell him partial truths as she slowly works on him from the sidelines. However, on the good side, my friend and I got through a very difficult time and are moving forward....:)
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