Feel Defeated already

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by Kjs, Jan 27, 2009.

  1. Kjs

    Kjs Guest

    I have an appointment myself for counseling today. Not the same therapist that difficult child see's. (that is the therapist husband and I saw also)

    I see his wife. But why? Nothing will change. I put down some rules yesterday. Even wrote them out. difficult child yells at me. Says how I blame Dad for everything and How mean I am. difficult child even started crying asking why things have to change. Why I start all the fights....It is all my fault. And it is just killing me that he hates me and sees me in this way.

    So, i tried best I could to tell him that 1. He does not know what is going on between dad and myself, so do not pass judgment. (then he asked me to tell him) 2. I am not going to schedule MY day around HIS. example. He spent the night at a friends. Went there about 4pm on Sunday. I called him when i left work and told him I would pick him up at 1pm. difficult child said NO. I am not ready to come home. He said he'll just call dad later and get a ride. (close to 4pm). I told him no. I will call him when i get into town, probably around 1pm. He hung up on me. When I called him he said he didn't want to come home. I told him if he does not want a ride with me, then he can walk. He chose to walk.

    My expectations are very small. Maybe - chores=30minutes a week.
    Limited time on the computer/games - no more than 4 hours a day. (that didn't go over well) Told him Homework will be done daily or he will lose privilegdes such as computer, games, cell phone, ipod. That didn't go over well either!

    Wants to know why I am so mean. It is killing me. He isn't into partying like his peers. Good kid in that aspect. Bad mouth. Disrespect.

    But why am I going to this counselor? She can't fix it. Heck, I can't fix it. And by trying to standup and do what I know is right - results in major arguments/fights. So why try. I am defeated before I even begin.
  2. ML

    ML Guest

    Well, maybe counseling can help you with setting boundaries, starting small and gaining success in one area before tackling another. It's going to be a slow process. Change is very hard but necessary. It's probably too much to expect difficult child to see that. It's enough for now that you can.

    I swear women have to really have a thick skin because as wives and mothers we are so often the target of frustration from husband's and difficult children. We are here to support you and tell you "this is NOT your fault". There are some things, actually most things we have no control over. Like reactions, behaviors, basically other people in general. We can only start with setting our own boundaries. I see you starting to do this and I am proud of you.

    Try not to get too discouraged. It is darkest before the dawn. I know you can do this.


  3. hearts and roses

    hearts and roses Mind Reader

    {{{KJs}}} There isn't a counselor alive in the entire world who can fix this for you.

    YOU (and hopefully H) need to fix this. The purpose of seeing a counselor is to help you find better awareness into what changes YOU need to make in your reaction and behaviors and attitude towards yourself and your family and the way your house runs....and then....help you recognize your own strength to make those changes. KEEP GOING!!!!
    If not with H, go alone, go together...it will be difficult and maybe even worse before it is better.

    But really, to give up is not okay...in one year from now you could be in a complete different, healthier, better place emotionally and mentally....OR...you could be exactly where you are right now, or worse.

    You've only just begun to fight for yourself.

    Of course, difficult child is going to blame you. You're rocking the boat. But he is a kid and doesn't clearly understand all the aspects of a marriage such as yours. And it's none of his business. He isn't and should not be privy to all the intricacies of your marriage, or or out of the bedroom. IOW, Tough Carp that he wants to know what the problems are - you just tell him flat out that it's an adult situation, you and H are working on it, and that he is not allowed to ask you about it anymore. Tell him you will fill him in on what you're willing to share with him on an 'as needed' basis. For now, he has to trust.

    As for the basic rules, sweetie, you are sooooo not being unreasonable. Four hours on the computer a day?? My God, my difficult child would have kissed my feet for that!! Maximum time allowed on the computer Sunday through Thursday was only 2 hours and Fri/Sat was only 3 hours. And that included homework, internet or game time. More than enough in my opinion. Four hours - I am blown away.

    Obviously, H and difficult child have gotten away with far too much for far too long and now that you're pulling in the reigns, they are balking...no surprises there, kjs. You just keep at it. It will tire you and some days (like today) you will want to give it up and just throw up your hands, and throw in the towel. Hang in there.

    You may not win the battle against them, but you will have won the battle against yourself....standing up for yourself, doing what you believe in, what you know is right and just. And it's not just about the chores for 30 minutes or 4 hours of computer time - it's about you taking a stand.

    You must remember that, difficult child or not, he is still a boy. He is a teenager. Even a easy child would be balking at a change in the rules, at more expectations. Too bad. You're the MOM. He is the KID. YOUR house, YOUR rules. It's difficult to enforce rules if H isn't at least following suit or wholeheartedly in agreement, which I know he's not - too much work for him.

    KJs - seek out encouragement any way you can. Do this for yourself and please don't give up!! Sending major hugs, support and strength!
  4. Lothlorien

    Lothlorien Active Member Staff Member

    You need the counseling for yourself. No, she can't fix it, but she can help you to figure out whether it's worth continuing with this relationship or not. Don't feel defeated. You are just starting to stand up for yourself and this is just the beginning of a new life for you. When this is over, you will realize how strong of a woman you've become and you will not let anyone walk on you again.
  5. Kjs

    Kjs Guest

    I know you are all right. Just not having a good couple days. Then to always be yelled at no matter what just makes me feel so bad. Especially when they say I start everything, and I enjoy it. I hate difficult child hating me. I miss being his mom, and not the bad guy. And I hate having to do this all alone. You are correct to say husband does nothing in this.

    I did tell difficult child that what is going on between dad and myself is not for him to worry about.

    Still, I get all the blame, i get all the yelling...Is it worth it? To have your son hate you?

    And Yes, He gets up every single morning (school days too) and goes directly to the computer to play his stupid game. After school he goes directly to the computer. husband will ASK him when he is going to do homework. I TELL him. (I am not always home)
    Then I find out that difficult child tells husband it is done and it is not. difficult child then goes right back to the computer game.
    On weekends, 8 or 9am he is playing on the computer. Sometimes for 8 or more hours.

    He is sad because all his friends go to the district school, he is feeling left out. They all make plans with their little group, but difficult child is not included. Different school, out of the loop. Then he cries. I DO feel bad, but sitting infront of the computer for 8 hours a day is NOT going to make things better. Plus he has put on a lot of weight since last summer.

    As for husband - I can't even think or come up with how I think about him. Not now. But I DO need my son. The harder I try to have a structured house, the more he hates me.
  6. hearts and roses

    hearts and roses Mind Reader

    Kjs, this is how it was (is still at times) with my difficult child. It's so difficult, I think we all understand a bit about the struggle of being a parent and feeling like our child hates us. I know I do. In fact, I get to see it in writing on the computer in her IM's that she leaves up with her loser friends...about how much she hates me. Me, the one who is always in her corner, fighting for her success, praying and supporting her every step of the way; the Mom who cried at nearly every PPT and IEP meeting, fought for her....etc. I know what that feels like - a giant SLAP in the face. I keep plugging along. I have days that I want to just completely give up, and I have to some extent (after all my difficult child is 19 now), but my Mommy heart still aches to have a close loving relationship. It's hard. I'm sorry that you're feeling so crummy about it all. I hope that you feel better today. Hugs~
  7. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Kjs, have you been living in my house? In my brain?
    Sheesh, I could have written your note.
    And ... difficult child is home today. Again. Sigh.

    Many, many hugs. I KNOW the frustration.
  8. Star*

    Star* call 911........call 911


    I think in laymans terms -your home would be called "under crisis". Think right now (what do you see happening) into your families future. If you and husband allow things to progress as they are? Where do you see this relationship in say - a year? Without some continued help do you think there is a chance that things will get better? Do you see them staying the same? Do you want your son to be the same way with his wife and friends that your husband is currently with you and would you want to see your sons wife treat HIM like you treat your husband?

    Ask yourself what kind of foundation are you and your husband laying for your son's future? Hard question to ask as a friend, because I'm not criticizing - merely asking you to look at the life HE has. All the behaviors you exhibit will be the foundation for how your son treats the world. These behaviors will perpetuate into the next generation unless you work NOW to fix it.

    I've told you before, as my psychiatrist told me - YOU ARE NOT A PSYCHIC...you can't predict what other people will do. Change is never easy. Your sons behaviors can actually get worse before they get better. But if you do nothing? Nothing will happen.

    One of the biggest misconceptions I had when we started therapy 13 years ago with Dude? One visit would make dramatic differences. Two? Heck two visits and we should be cured and by the end of the month? Well - with four visits under our belt? Our entire family would be healthy. I think a lot of people think that too. It took us/me 13 years. I KNEW then that MY FAMILY was worth saving, worth fixing, worth having a future. Why should everyone else have a chance to be happy but me and my son?

    What made me happy? Learning my limits, learning my boundaries, and learning how to tell people NO, I will not allow this. The people around you are going to take notice. They are going to stop taking advantage of you and even more importantly? YOU are going to stop taking advantage of yourself, stop taking on the world, and stop lashing out at those around you because you won't stop taking on too much.

    Maybe right now this is too much or the wrong time in where you are with your therapy- but YOU are worth SO MUCH MORE than you are allowing yourself to have. So is your son. If your husband is willing to continue to change, and adapt and be helpful - that would be wonderful too. My marriage did not work out that way. I look back now - years later and I think about asking him/begging him to please go with me. Please care enough about our family and our marriage to do something/anything to save it. When he would not? When he would not change? I learned how to deal with HIM. I learned how to stop being bullied, and how to stop bullying. I stopped yelling and replaced it with walking away. I stopped showing my son things that I didn't want to perpetuate into HIS adult life AND most importantly HOW TO TREAT ME AS HIS MOTHER.

    Go kjs - go to therapy and keep doing it right now even though it just seems mundane and stupid and senseless with no end in sight. There is help - and I'm so proud of you for going even when you don't want to or even when your kid is yelling at you and not listening to you and when your husband is doing his broken record, broken record, broken record in his attempt to communicate his feelings to you.

    When YOU figure out how to stop letting everyone abuse you - you start to heal, find peace and that peace is reflected in how you treat others.

    Hugs -
    I REALLY hope you find a way to care about yourself as much as we do and keep going to therapy - YOU ARE WORTH EVERY MINUTE OF IT!
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2009
  9. Marcie Mac

    Marcie Mac Just Plain Ole Tired

    KJS, when I was going to counceling alone (because dex had the view that this running to a therapist was an "American" thing and there was nothing wrong with HIM) I was told flat out that the boys were going to turn on me, and to get myself prepared for the fallout when their father was asked (then court ordered forced) to leave. On some level they knew our home had become very unhealthy -dex was drinking and extremely abusive - but they were "used" to it and didn't want it to change. They were 12 and 13 at the time. It was probably the most difficult time of my life transitionwise. My boys told me I was a major "B" for throwing their dad out daily, reinforced by their dad daily. It was a struggle to gain control back over my house, even after he left. Gradually we hit an even keel (well, as even as you can get with a difficult child in the mix) It was a long drawn out painful time for all of us.

    The one thing I constantly thought about during this time was "Is this what I want to have my boys learn about relationships between what was supposed to be a loving relationship in a marriage" And the answer was a resounding NO every time. I was viewed as an agressive B -comming home from long hours at work issuing orders and edicts - were they going to look at all women who stood their ground the same way - And the answer was a resounding YES unless I changed the dynamics.

    There is no quick fix to your problems. Its going to take two people on the same page to institute any change in the house with your difficult child. One counceling session isn't going to do anything - its going to be very hard to start peeling back the layers of your marriage to get to the bottom to even see if it is savable, whether alone or together. I know I found out a lot about myself during this time, and learned a lot about why I was the way I was.

    It was a good thing even though it was painful.

  10. janebrain

    janebrain New Member

    Just wanted to say that difficult child is going to "hate" you for awhile--all teens seem to hate their parents at some point. You could do everything he thinks he wants you to do and he would still find a reason to hate you. I remember hating my parents for awhile when I was a teen--have no idea why! So, I think you have to set that aside and do what you think is right. He will not hate you forever and in fact will not only love you but also respect you when you are able to set boundaries. Keep going to the counseling, it will help!

  11. totoro

    totoro Mom? What's a GFG?

    I think everyone is so right on.
    One thing I think you really have to hold onto and we our taught early on with our kids, but tend to lose sight of when we are in crisis mode is, do not engage them.
    When they are screaming at you, when they are calling you names, when difficult child is telling you he hates you. When H is telling you have caused all of this or that he did nothing, do not give any of them the satisfaction of raising your voice, deep breath, calm inside, think for a moment.
    Either walk away if it is too much or just say something like, "I am not discussing this right now" "I am not talking to you when you are disrespect me like this"
    "When you can talk to me like and equal, then I will discuss this"

    ANy of those things that will let them, especially H know that you are not playing the games.
    Why bother, right now anyway. Talk at the therapist's where it is safe.
    They are not listening anyway.
    Do not engage them.
    For now if difficult child will not listen or do what you want just say fine, walk away. But tell him to not ask for anything from you until he can start respecting you. Period.
    Offer to help him, but he needs to start listening and respecting, period.
    But you will have to let him fail, on his own. Leave it to him and H if they will not work with you under your conditions. No arguing.
    Hang in there.
  12. 1905

    1905 Well-Known Member

    I swear my kids hate me as well. Why? Because I talked, or because I didn't get the Skittles they asked for, or Skittles bag I bought wasn't large enough! But, I'm the mom. I'm trying to raise them and teach them how to act as adults, if they don't learn the easy way, it'll be the hard way. I love them, and if they hate me- I still love them. Everything I do is for their own good really ( Oh no, I sound like my mother.) One day, they'll thank us, if not-it's ok. You're doing your best, don't be hard on yourself . (((HUGS)))-Alyssa
  13. Kjs

    Kjs Guest

    difficult child loves his father. You see, dad sets no rules. no limits. On anything. Ever.
    As for me. I am the bad guy. While dad sits back and does what he does (nothing) - oh yeah, He does spend hours viewing video's. (which I took his phone away).

    I do not want to live in a house that has absolutely no boundries. difficult child runs our house. His dad will do anything he wants. I will not. Dad is the big hero here, and I am stuck working nights, missing the fun things with difficult child- like baseball. I miss the evenings.

    I really believe that difficult child would be a totally different kid if husband wasn't around.
    But husband is his hero and I am the evil monster. He chose to walk home yesterday in below zero weather rather than ride with me. And I am sure he told husband that I wouldn't give him a ride.

    I told him I will pick him up at 1pm on my way home from work. He said no. I told him to find his own way then. I called when I got closer to town and asked if he was ready and he told me he would rather walk. OK. I said walk. So, I am sure husband will lay it on me. Probably not until the next counseling session. And that isn't until next week....I think we need to go every other night! He just had no openings.

    I know you guys are right. Just so broken hearted. I feel so mean, and the one thing that means the most in this world - is what I seem to be losing, my kids.
  14. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Marcie and Jane are right. I wish I had words of wisdom like that.
    It is so true ... it's a "natural" occurance and somehow, you've got to get through it. It will be yrs before the kids realize you were right.
    You are not losing your kids. You are teaching them the right way to have a relationship. You are losing the unhealthy part of your relationships. Even in painful relationships, the other partner who witnesses the change will want you to change back, just because it's what he's used to. An old, bad habit.

    Be strong, Kjs. Keep breathing.
    We're here for you.
  15. Star*

    Star* call 911........call 911

    This kid - is a master of divide and conquer.

    The behavior is NOT uncommon at ALL in children. If Mom says no, ask Dad, if Dad says no? Ask Grandma. If Grandma says NO? You're all just a bunch of meanies.

    You know what? The first thing I would have told your husband is

    I called Son to tell him I was X minutes away and offer a ride
    He refused to go with me
    I told him he could walk home.
    He chose to walk home in sub zero weather
    I'm NOT an "at call" taxi service.

    And DO THAT BEFORE your son got home
    Have a family meeting about HOW he is to behave when at a friends house.
    NO I AM NOT READY is NOT an option - this is not a choice -
    WHAT IS a choice is -
    Either you come when you are called to leave the next time OR

    Then ask husband to back you up on that - so that HE doesn't have to trot out in the snow to get a child who REFUSED to go with his Mother when he was told to leave.

    (that's what I learned in thearpy) :tongue:

    You always have choices
    You present the child with choices when you are able
    When you are not? You back each other up as parents and let the child deal with his acting out in an appropriate manner. Telling him it's okay to be angry - as long as he expresses his anger in an appropriate manner.

    I'm just curious - because I didn't do it either when this was a situation with us ....But WHY didn't you drive to the friends house, knock on the door and tell the other kids Mom that you were there to pick up your son?

    Because - after I heard the CHOICES speech from our therapist? I did drive to the door, knock and politely say CAR.....NOW. But I could never figure out what stopped me from doing that before.

    Odd huh?
  16. hearts and roses

    hearts and roses Mind Reader

    My mother used to pull into the easement where I hung out as a teen, drive her car up onto the sidewalk, shine her lights down the easement and then get out and stand in front of the headlights and call me to her. She didn't just scare me, but my friends scattered like roaches. No question, we didn't question her.

    Why aren't we like that? I mean, I am now, but why did we have to learn that?
  17. Genny

    Genny Worlds Best Nana

    Kids (especially difficult children) take their frustrations out on the parent they're closest to. For my difficult child, it was me and her Dad; she knew that if she ever treated her biomom as badly as she treated us, she'd be disowned without another thought. She knew we'd be there for her - not that we took it laying down - but we didn't give up on her because she "hated" us. Personally, I think your sons attitude has more to do with being 14 than with you being the heavy. If it was your husband making him do homework and limiting his computer time your son would treat him the same way. Try not to take it personally.

    I'm glad you're going to counseling. No, sh won't be able to fix anything, but she CAN help you to help yourself. My husband and I went to counseling, not for our marriage, but to help us deal with difficult child. Your counselor will tell you that you are NOT a bad mother because your son chose to walk home in the cold. Sometimes it really helps to hear (from a trained professional) that you're doing the right thing.

    Hang in there!

  18. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    I haven't read the other replies, but I have some thoughts on this.

    You have EVERYTHING to gain by standing up for what you believe is right for you and your family. You are NOT being unreasonable in any way, shape or form with what you are asking for.

    Your difficult child is going to grouse and whine and complain a lot. That's tough. That's just plain tough. You are his MOM and your responsibility as a parent comes first. You are not his buddy. Your job is to ensure that he is educated both academically and in self-care. Leniency in chores and generosity in privileges teaches him nothing. You've already seen what comes of that in his huge sense of entitlement. Newsflash to HIM: The World Does NOT Revolve Around You!!!

    Kjs, your best decision is the one you've already made: to do what's right for yourself. You KNOW difficult child needs to be responsible. You KNOW that excessive computer and video game time is unreasonable. You KNOW that in life, we must all DO to GET. It's a very simple concept. The sooner difficult child learns it, the more peaceful life will be for everyone in your house.

    It's going to be hard, and it's going to hurt, but you need to detach from him when he starts to rant like that and just walk away. You don't have to sit there and listen to him carry on. Period. And you don't owe him any explanation. You are the parent and that's that. His reactivity is just an attempt to manipulate and get you to change your mind. DON'T.

    If it helps, pretend he is three again and trying to get away with something. Did you let him do it then? Probably not. So DON'T let him do it to you now. You are only defeated if you allow others to do that to you.

    Your therapist should be able to help you work some of this out, too. Give you some strategies for how to deal with the manipulative behaviors and stand your ground. It IS hard. But you have to do it or everybody loses. You lose your power and authority as the parent, and difficult child loses out on learning an important life lesson.

    Hang in there girl. It's going to be rough for a while, but it will be worth it in the end. You will have your dignity, your self respect, and your personal power. And your difficult child will have valuable life skills that will help him to function as a responsible adult, and he will respect you as his mother. It may not feel that way today, but one day it will.

    Oh, and as for Good-Time-Charlie aka Dad, eventually your son will grow up and realize that life isn't always about fun and games and getting your way no matter what. Dad's image will eventually tarnish and the cheap, superficial material that's underneath will be obvious. You, on the other hand, are pure gold because you are trying to do what you KNOW is the right thing to do. You may not be able to compete at the same level with the "fun" stuff Dad offers him now, but trust me, when difficult child is an adult he will SEE that you are the parent with substance and real value. You are the one who will have taught him what it means to be responsible human being. And he's going to be an adult a whole lot longer than he is the child he is now.
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2009
  19. KTMom91

    KTMom91 Well-Known Member

    Nothing else to add...but sending many hugs and lots of strength. You will get through this and you will be all right.
  20. skeeter

    skeeter New Member

    I was (and am) the heavy in the family, the ex is the "good time" guy.

    Now that my kids are older, while they love both of us, guess who they call when they need advice and such? Yep, me. Who knows of the surprise visits my son has made home to his wife when he didn't want anyone else to know so he could spend time with her? Yep, me.

    Our job as a parent is not to be "liked" - although if it turns out that way, that's great. Our job is to raise self sufficient, contributing members of society (if it's at all possible).