difficult child logic (illogic) and difficult child threats...tired of it.

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by MidwestMom, Apr 17, 2013.

  1. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Need your wisdom and feedback.

    I was at the place I volunteer at today and the phone rang and I saw a strange phone number so I answered. It was a 1-800. It was my son. I don't even think he read my text messages to him about how not to call me if he was going to be nasty and swear, but he was decent to me so I figured he must have and maybe it had worked.


    He just called again and we were talking. He said something like, "If I get J. only every other weekend and once during the week, I lost J."

    I said, "You can't think of it that way. That's not losing J. It's just getting less time than you want with him. You will still be in his life."

    Son lost it: "If you EVER say that again, we're done."

    Me: Say what?

    Son: That getting J. on weekends and once a week doesn't mean I lost J. If you ever say it again...ever...we are done.

    (He has said we are done if I say this or that before. He however is a loose cannon)

    Then he started going on with the threat about what he'd do if I said it so I said, "Well, right now, I'm done with this call" and hung up.

    It's amazing how a child without a drug problem can be such an incredible difficult child. Sometimes I wonder how he'd exist if he made good on his threat. Out of all my kids, he is the one who is the neediest. After the blow up conversation last night, in which 35 was screaming and swearing so that my entire family could hear him, Jumper said, "Why do you even talk to him? He's such a baby."

    I already lost one son, so I'm a bit vulnerable to this threat, but I can't let him swear, scream and abuse me and I never know when he's going to lose it. Did what I say about not losing J. if he lost time with his son not make sense? I think so.

    Most of the time, I think of my family as my husbabnd, my pastry chef daughter, Sonic and Jumper. I always know they'll be nice to me. 35 is really a wildcard. He isn't very nice in general. That's why he got himself into trouble with custody and, although I don't like his ex, I'm sure he gave her plenty to be unhappy about.

    Should I risk losing another child? I'm tired of kissing his feet. And to be honest, when he was married, I barely heard from him and his siblings can't stomach him. They know how he treats me. What would you do if you were in this situation? I don't like having to watch every word I say or I get threatened to be put in the trash can.
  2. JKF

    JKF Well-Known Member

    If he is verbally abusive to you I would definitely cut ties with him or at the very least pull back a bit. I know he's going through a stressful period but that's no reason for him to take it out on you. YOU didn't do this to him. I would definitely focus on your husband and other children. I know it's easier said than done bc I also struggle with similar issues with my difficult child at times of crisis. I'm so sorry you have to deal with this! (((((((Hugs)))))))))
  3. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    I'm just sending some caring hugs. Those of us with larger families have to adapt to the one's who "got away", so to speak. I never imagined that some of my children would pull away from me because, like you, I gave 100% to loving and nurturing and encouraging each of them to be the best they could be. None of them hate me but the son who pulled away evidently has no idea how much pain he has caused. I received an email this week from him. It was signed "Love, X" but truthfully MWM it had not one word of caring or interest in me...it could have been sent to you!

    Your son is in crisis. I am sorry. on the other hand, he really doesn't seem to have the capacity to care for you and the other family members. His world is all he sees and his thoughts are all he hears. So sad. I think that you are doing a good job of trying to be supportive but honestly (and I am no expert) I think you should tell him "I love you Y and I want the best for you BUT I will hang up the phone when you are threatening or abusive to me." He is crossing the boundaries, in my humble opinion. You have my support no matter what you decide but if you are not comfortable hanging up you can at least zone out. Geez, who to heck ever knew how hard it was to parent? Not me. Hugs DDD
  4. Calamity Jane

    Calamity Jane Well-Known Member

    It's unhealthy for him to be both needy and push you away simultaneously. He talks to you this way because he CAN. I know he needs to vent, that's very understandable, but either he should speak properly to you, or take his thoughts to a therapist.

    It is not unreasonable for you to draw boundaries and define a healthy dialogue with 35. I'm with Jumper on this one.
  5. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    I did hang up on him.

    I'm sorry this is happening to him, but he needs to man up/grow up and deal with it. If I say he's not the only one going throught his he says "I DON'T CARE!" He is so me-centric. He is such a typical difficult child.
  6. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    You know Pam(I hope you dont mind me calling you that because its easier for me to type), I really get that your son needs to vent about his issues. Actually the idea that he might get every weekend and one night in the middle of the week is very liberal visitation but he isnt thinking clearly. That is still basically half time!

    I think I would tell him you are more than happy to listen to his thoughts if he will put them all down in emails to you in one each day. He can save them as a draft during the day so he can keep adding his thoughts during the day as he gets enraged over different things then send that email at the end of the day. Now honestly you really dont have to read that email. Send something soothing back later on like you know how to do. Dont even mention custody. I think that is just a hot topic.. I would find the Father to Father custody group online for him to join. They are normally fairly anti-woman and will listen to him rant. LOL. They can probably also give him tips on custody in his state. I would find some way to lesson the actual verbal contact but still let him rant to you because he sees you as his safe person and I wouldnt take that away from him at this time. You dont have to actually process all of it but do give him somewhere to vent to.

    *Just my two cents.
  7. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    He wanted to be heard. He didn't want you to say that he was wrong in what he said, he just wanted you to hear and validate his feelings (understandable) that he would "lose" his child if he only saw him every other weekend. I can imagine feeling that.
    But you are not his therapist, you are his mother, and you made a comment meaning it to be helpful. It wasn't, no, mature or "right" of him to react like that. As always, his reaction had to do with him, not you.
  8. Bunny

    Bunny Active Member

    Your son made a comment that he was "losing" J, and you tried to point out to him that he is not losing him. You were doing what a mother does. If he is going to get nasty and make threats about being done with you, I think that you need to pull back a bit. He's an adult and regardless of his difficult child status, he needs to learn to speak to you like he would speak to another adult whose shoulder he was crying on.
  9. busywend

    busywend Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Obviously, nothing anyone says will change the way he thinks....so dont bother. Tell him you agree to disagree on the topic of custody....dont want to discuss that topic anymore and leave it at that.
  10. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    You misunderstand. I wasn't clear enough :) I don't blame you. Or criticise you. Your response was quite reasonable and your son's was not.

    I was just saying that he wanted to be heard. And we do all want that, whether we are 6, 35 or 92!
  11. MWM (Pam)- I think you were more than justified in hanging up the phone on Mr. 35. Allowing him to rant and swear at you is only going to encourage more of the same. It may take a long time and it may never happen but if you continue to demand respect from him then maybe eventually you will get it. If he wants to continue a relationship with you he will eventually learn to control that behaviour around you and be more rational.

    Hugs to you. It is very unfair of him to treat you this way because it sounds like you have tried everything you can and been as supportive as a parent can be for his whole life. Take joy in your husband, Sonic, Jumper and PastryChef. Deal with Mr. 35 as you have to and try to let it go immediately afterwards. Vent here and then get on with enjoying the rest of your family.
  12. scent of cedar

    scent of cedar New Member

    To all the great insights you have received from the others of us, I would add this: Though your son is an adult, it seems to me that in his mind, you are still the magical mother. He loves and trusts you, or he would not share his uncensored self with you. If you were to reply honestly to him, just as you would have had he indulged in this kind of behavior toward you as a child, I think he will take your words to heart. He needs you to love him, and to teach him a better way. You know intuitively how to help him do this. Setting boundaries by telling him the way he phrases his communications is hurting you might be a good place to start, I think. Just say that, and let him think it over on his own. Sometimes, our sons don't think we CAN be hurt by what they say, because they know they love us and don't mean it. Your goal is not to punish him, or to keep him from you or to stop contact with him. Your goal is to help him see a better way to express himself without blaming others for his understandable frustration with his situation.

    Blah, blah, blah. Too many big words. :O) I know you will get the general drift of what I am trying to say.

    My son is the same way. It's almost like he still needs me to say, "I don't think that is what you mean." or "This must be so frustrating for you."

    Or even, "I know you will figure this one out, honey." Or, "Boy, that must be tough."

    That kind of thing.

    But if you could hear what comes out of his mouth sometimes? You wouldn't believe it.

    Here is a for instance. This morning, I was talking to my son. He was starting to be angry about something to do with work. Here is what I said (pretty much). "Well, you're going to have to get this all taken care of pretty quickly, honey. You need to be up and running so you can help your sister."

    Sounds goofy, right?

    But it changed his mental gears from anger / blaming to seeing himself as someone others can depend on.

    I didn't hear another word about work.

    Is this son of yours really bright, and very funny, as well?

  13. Tiredof33

    Tiredof33 Active Member

    My difficult child son is the same. When he calls and asks for my opinion he gets angry when I don't agree with him. So why call and asks?

    I felt like I was being used for a dumping ground and the calls are stressful. in my opinion they need anger management classes and we both know that is going to happen.

    A counselor once told me that they treat us like that because they know we will not leave them. In other words, we let them. Well, I want to be treated with respect and I am sure you do too. I would not let a friend or even hubby talk to me the way difficult child does so I let him know that and he hung up.

    They are adults and they need to act like it!
  14. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    I can handle anything except his threat to disappear. I don't think he could do it, but it already happened to me. Don't mess with Mom by saying those words. Them's fighting words. Then you've lost me.