difficult child has set me free

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by KrisfromNJ, Jun 22, 2014.

  1. KrisfromNJ

    KrisfromNJ New Member

    Update: I never figured out how to set a sig, but I wanted to checkin. I have been reading and not really posting. I been trying to just take some great advice from a fantastic group of ladies and apply it. You can see my son is choosing homelessness post for some back ground.

    Well it has been three months since I decided to get my own life together and let difficult child be difficult child. I knew I had to do something drastic to take myself and my SO out of the volatile situation we were in. Therefore I changed mine and SO cell numbers and our home number.

    Because my difficult child never gives up I also changed his mailing address at the post office to a PO box that I paid In advance so I wouldn't have to deal with seeing his court notices, warrants and medical bills he would never plan to pay anyways. In my last conversation I explained to him I loved him, he is a smart guy and said you can figure it out. Right now though "we" meaning SO and me need to get on with our lives. I the gave him his PO key and told him his "new address".

    We started our lives and now three months have past, I have not heard from difficult child until last week. It appears something happened when we cut ties. He woke up "or seems" to woke up. I don't want to get my hopes up but I seen him down town passing by and he is no longer homeless. He signed himself up to an independent living program and they are helping him get a job.

    For the first time and I know this is small... He said sorry for everything I put you guys through... When I get settled can you do me a favor and come by and see my new place I live at? Well I told him I was working and busy but let's meet after this month and we will see.

    Here is hoping..... I just wanted to thank all you gals, I may not know you personally but I feel a kindred spirit when I am here and wish everyone the best. I will be checking in from time to time and posting some updates.

    Sent using ConductDisorders mobile app
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  2. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Thanks for the update Kris.

    When I was in a Codependency program, the therapists told us many stories like yours, where the kids "woke up" when the parents stopped enabling them. It isn't always the case, but they told us it was common. I'm really glad that your son is showing signs of that. And, I actually think that him saying he is sorry for what he put you all through is a huge thing, not a small thing, it sounds as if he is feeling remorse and that's part of taking responsibility for ourselves.

    Yes, here is hoping Kris, for you, for me, for all of us..........

    And, yes, please keep us posted, we certainly want to hear how you and your son are doing.........
  3. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member

    Im so pleased for you at this little bit of progress. Even one small step forward is towards hope and I think we live on that.
  4. ForeverSpring

    ForeverSpring Well-Known Member

    What a WONDERFUL message to wake up to!!!!

    We were also told that if we were serious and stopped giving in to our daughter, when she was in the hey day of her scary drug days, she would have a much better chance of changing and that our bailing her out of trouble was holding her back. Although my daughter managed to dodge jail, she was on parole twice and the police were always a-callin' at our house to ask her questions about something or another. It played with my nerves and my two very little ones would get hysterical. They even had a police dog come inside once to sniff her room.

    We finally made her leave. She called her brother, who can be a total a*****e, but is very straight and uber-religious and he allowed her to go live in his basement under a stricter set of rules we ever gave her, including working, rent, cleaning, cooking, and not even one cigarette in the house or she was out. She took the deal and things turned around quickly for her. She knew he wasn't kidding. She felt that we would soften up and relent, eventually feeling sorry for her.

    Today she doesn't even smoke cigarettes. She is almost nine months pregnant, has her own house and lives with her SO of eleven years. She is very responsible.

    I think you did a great job. It's not easy to let go. You set your son free too and now he can do what he needs to do to grow up. It appears he is taking big steps toward that. I have never understood how some people allow their 30-50 year old adult children to live at home, swear at them, steal from them, take drugs in their homes, etc. Obviously, it does not help their adult children and they totally give up their own lives and often other loved ones who treat them well.

    Big kudos to you and to your son too. I hope he stays on track!!!!

    I am a sucker for a good story :)
  5. Childofmine

    Childofmine one day at a time

    I am so glad to read your post this morning. I know doing what you did was the hardest thing you have ever done in your life, and I take my hat off to you.

    And, I am so glad that your difficult child has chosen a different life. I know that isn't always the case, so we can't count on that, but I do believe when we create space and time and distance, something good can move in to fill the space, possibly, if difficult child is willing.

    I have not done yet what you have done, but I know that option is out there, and today, it is something I can consider.

    What a life, right? Who would ever have thought?

    I also commend you for taking it slow. We just don't have to do anything today. That is something I am learning.

    Big hugs for you and thank you so much for posting. Please keep us up to date. We know that things don't go in a straight line but we are all here to help and support each other when life happens.
  6. Echolette

    Echolette Well-Known Member

    I cut off all ties with my difficult child two weeks ago..he continues to call a dozen times a day, but I don't respond. Yestarday I got an email from his dad saying that difficult child had said he was going to go to rehab so that I would talk to him again. He said he is sick of living like this and wants to get better so he can "live like you and mom and (twin sister)."

    words is words and words ain't actions. but still, it is new language for him. Your son is walking a walk...I'm excited for him and for you. My belief is that even a few weeks of trying followed by relapse is better than no trying at all....

    happy for you, and maybe a tiny flicker of hope for my difficult child as well..
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  7. pasajes4

    pasajes4 Well-Known Member

    We take the good when we can get it.
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  8. JKF

    JKF Well-Known Member

    What wonderful news! I'm so happy to read this post!

    My difficult child has been back in NJ and homeless for about 3 weeks now. I've texted with him a handful of times and have only spoken to him on the phone once. I made it clear to him several times that until he gets help for his mental illnesses and gets off the streets that we can not and will not see him. It's too hurtful for us to see him homeless again and struggling and if that's the kind of life he wants to live fine - but we have the choice not to see him live like that. I'm realizing more and more that nothing will change his situation unless he wants it to change. He has phone numbers and locations for help but he always has an excuse as to why he doesn't use those resources. The place is too crowded, the people are mean, they want him to get his birth certificate, etc. Petty excuses for such a dire situation but it's his choice at this point. I can't and won't do it for him ever again.

    Anyway - thanks for the update. It makes me hopeful that I really am making the right decision by cutting ties and forcing him to take responsibility for his own life.

    Sent using ConductDisorders mobile app
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  9. Childofmine

    Childofmine one day at a time

    Wow, JKF, you sound good in your words above. Are you okay? Doing pretty well with this?

    I so get what you wrote.

    I found all kinds of information for help in difficult child's backpack when I picked it up from the day homeless shelter after he got arrested April 3. Worksheets with a community organization for almost everything in the world you can think of that a person would need.

    Completely blank. Always plenty of excuses why not. I think the real reason is this: they drug test him, and he will fail the drug test. Plain and simple.

    You and Echo both are showing me something that I am just starting to consider.

    Thank you. Please keep talking about this and how you are doing.
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  10. PatriotsGirl

    PatriotsGirl Well-Known Member

    It is a good sign when they apologize - mine apologizes and is scared poopless about the karma she will now get from her son....(insert evil laugh...)
  11. KrisfromNJ

    KrisfromNJ New Member

    Wow.. I just checked and thank you all for your kind words and encouragement. I wish everyone the best and that all our difficult child's get to the right path.

    I went to difficult child's new place, it's not a palace and I made sure to reserve my opinions and not show judgement. More like a dorm that he has a roommate with. But it was clean and definitely beats the street.

    I took difficult child out for lunch, we made small talk and I pretty much just listened, of course I bit my tongue when needed. (Trust me it was hard). Someone on my original thread said there was a possibility that he was taking drugs when I first posted and he said "I don't want to lie to you no more" during lunch. My heart sank and I was waiting for the back to reality and thinking, "here it comes" this was a dream of some sorts.

    He said, remember when I broke in the house and stole all your jewelry and computers, well it was because I got mixed up with some guys and we started taking drugs and I got hooked on them. All I cared about was the drugs. I am sorry, I am seeing someone for it and I only want you someday to be able to forgive me. I pawned your stuff for drug money and to party and it's taken me this long to clean myself up.

    Well that conversation ended with me finally getting some closure on a lot of reasons things happened around the house. He asked me for clothes if I could and he pay me back for them in his first check. He needed to have them for a job interview. I usually would break and do it right away but I said, give me a couple days to think this over but I want your mentor to call me first to make sure your telling the truth before I help you out again.

    I hope that was the right thug to do, it felt hard but at the same time right. Well I went home and didn't make it five feet without balling my eyes out. Of course SO said he would believe it when he sees it after I told him. Time will tell but I might be starting to heal.

    Good luck to us all, this might finally be a turning point and I am trying to stay grounded so I don't get my hopes totally up and end in a let down.

    Sent using ConductDisorders mobile app
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  12. ForeverSpring

    ForeverSpring Well-Known Member

    I think it was very much the right thing to do. With our difficult children, especially with those with a history of drug use, we can never know for sure what is and what isn't true until they are 100% clean. It was almost a year after my daughter quit before I believed she wouldn't backslide.

    One big sign of quitting drugs is that the person usually is no longer associating with drug users. My daughter spent many lonely, lonely months with nobody. She was living with her brother, in his basement, and he is stricter than us and could be a real a*** and is not forgiving. So she walked to and from work, like he told her to, and came home and didn't have much to do or any friends. She finally met her SO at work and that helped her a lot in the companionship department, but it can be lonely at first. It is the same for an alcoholic. Your buddies all go out to drink after work. What do you do? Suddenly you have to change your entire lifestyle. It isn't easy. If he does THAT, trust me, he is telling you the truth. If he is still hanging out with the same losers he always did, I would think they'd pressure him into keeping up with the drugs. And our difficult children don't exactly have a strong will and the ability to buck the crowd.

    I am wishing that your difficult child is telling you the truth and that the nightmare for you and for him is over. Hugs and prayers (prayers of your choice) in your direction.
  13. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    It all sounds promising Kris. I hope you are all starting to heal. Keeping you and your difficult child in my prayers........
  14. Echolette

    Echolette Well-Known Member

    Kris you did wonderfully!!!! You held your boundaries, you didn't judge, you detached, you were kind, and YOU REMEMBERED TO PAUSE BEFORE REACTING!! YOu did great!

    You can now move on to the 400 level course, cause we all know there is more to learn...but yay! Today school is out! You did great!!

    I would so so so love for difficult child to do this.

    those are the best steps. The small times, the little talk, when we let them talk and we hear. He told you a lot today. That must have been hard for him and for you. Its a big step.

  15. Scent of Cedar *

    Scent of Cedar * Well-Known Member

    I am going to think of this posting when I am wavering, Kris. Thanks so much for posting to us. We are all trying so hard to respond to our kids differently. We think we know this is the right path, but when we hear a great story like this one and you didn't buckle, even when your son seemed to be making progress, it validates every change we are making.

    Wishing you and your son every success, Kris. I was talking to someone once who told me that one of the ways to know whether your child is using or not is that a person still using is still blaming.

    A person who is clear of drugs will be aware of what his use cost him, and of how that hurt you, and will be grateful that you are still in his life, at all.

    Thank you again, Kris.

  16. helpangel

    helpangel Active Member

    thanks for the update Kris (also for bumping this back to top Cedar) I'm still playing catch up on the boards after taking a week off. Kris it sounds like you are doing good...

    she's right, Echo knows her stuff... it does make me a little sad that even though 12 years after finding this soft place to land I often feel like I still have training wheels on my bike. LOL JK

    Anyway so great to hear from you and keep up the good work

  17. tryagain

    tryagain Active Member

    So glad to read of this. Please let us know how he does with his improving situation.
  18. busywend

    busywend Well-Known Member

    Clothes for a job interview is a common request that many get duped with. I have seen it many times here. Check the facts, or give knowing you could be duped and just accept it and learn from it if you are duped.

    sent from mobile phone