Feeling very grateful and...something...

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by Albatross, Mar 4, 2014.

  1. Albatross

    Albatross Well-Known Member

    difficult child is safe, has been at a halfway house and working for the past few weeks. This was very good news because we did not know where he was, or if he was all right, and we were very worried. He called to ask for his bike so he could get to his job. When he called, husband and I both sprang into action -- "You put air in the tires, I'll find his shoes! He'll need a helmet too!" "If you leave right now you can take him to dinner!" Then we both stopped in mid stride and looked at each other, put the bike with the tires still flat and his dusty helmet in the trunk, and husband dropped it off and stayed for only a few minutes, because to do anything more would be met with resentment. He really just wanted his bike.

    Why didn't difficult child think to even let us know where he is, how he is? Why does difficult child only contact us when he needs something? Why does he treat parental concern like something infective that needs to be kept at arm's length? The "normal" give and take of a relationship, the desire to share and celebrate, just isn't there. Of course I will take knowing he is safe and paying his own freight and be SO relieved and grateful! But some days I really grieve this lack of a relationship. Maybe it never was, maybe it never will be...but it really gets to me sometimes.
  2. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Albatross, (great photo!) I had to smile when you and husband sprang into action, I know that one! For me, those days are gone now. It's great that you both caught yourselves and stopped. That's how it all seems to work, we change one inch at a time.

    Your difficult child is responding in the same way to you as most of ours respond to us........whatever it is, it is part of how their brains work..........it has really helped me to NOT take that personally, all I can do is create boundaries around behavior I don't want. I feel that relief and gratitude too...........knowing they're safe ends up being so important to us..........I understand what you're saying.

    I have grieved my socks off about the lack of a "normal" relationship too..........I think we all do that...........we grieve until the grieving is over and then it is simply our new normal. I've gotten used to that for the most part but every now and again I will see a mother and a daughter shopping, having dinner, laughing, you know, the "normal" stuff and I become aware, once again, that I don't have that and likely never will. So, it is a bump periodically, but a bump that dissipates quickly after awhile. Thankfully.

    I forget how old your difficult child is. It's helpful to us if you can put a signature at the bottom of your posts, so we can recall your history and respond accordingly.

    I'm glad you're here with us. Keep posting, you're not alone, that's for sure...........
  3. SeekingStrength

    SeekingStrength Well-Known Member

    Albatross, husband and I are so right there with you. We would have reacted the VERY same way. I am learning every day from reading these posts. What you and your husband finally decided on is a lightbulb moment for me.

    I am happy you know your difficult child is safe and working!
  4. Albatross, i am glad you know where difficult child is tonight because that alone will ease the worry in your heart. Like recovering said, trying to decipher how most of our difficult children respond to things will only prolong your misery but i understand your frustration because sometimes i tend to take things that difficult child does personally. You and husband seem to be doing well in in letting difficult child handle his business so give yourself props and take each day at as it comes.

    This journey with our difficult children is really treacherous but know that you are not alone.
  5. Echolette

    Echolette Well-Known Member

    ah....so familiar. sometimes i have this reaction when I read about OTHER people's difficult child's on the board! In fact when some of the posters talk about how their difficult child's aren't getting jobs, I have to refrain from making suggestions (like bicycle delivery boy, which sounds like what your difficult child is doing, and something my son does oftern to make money to tide him over some period.), my own e version of running around in circles to help difficult children..

    So funny.

    so well done that you saw it and stopped yourself.

    I don't know why they don't see or care that it makes us crazy to worry about them...or why they don't appreciate what we do at least a little...maybe they are detaching from us with love, figuring we own our own behavior and reactions and it isn't their problem to ease our discomfort for our bad choices (continuing to help them even when it doesn't help them). New thought! Kind of a joke..but kind of not. A lot of them have detached from us. Mine has to a great extent. Yours may have too.

    You and husband did well. Yu can maybe laugh a little over the almost-happened comedy act of running around and bumping into each other. You can grieve your sons carelessness towards you together. And you can know that he is safe and looking for a job.

    Take some deep breaths, go outside. Its a good day.

  6. Childofmine

    Childofmine one day at a time Staff Member

    We're SO GOOD at springing into action! Aren't we? We really know how to do that.

    And that is a great quality to have in so many areas of life, especially business. Give it to me, I'll get it done! There, done! And done well.

    And our loving hearts just want to help so badly. I love what you wrote and I saw myself right here! Oh, you need something! I'll get it. I'll make it happen. There, now you can do what you need to do. I've helped you. Go forth, and conquer, with me standing behind you, difficult child.

    For so many years, that was my hope and my wish as I helped and helped and helped. But that second part I thought was a given...wasn't.

    I love how you two stopped and looked at each other. It's almost like a comedy sketch. I can see you now, getting it simultaneously (Sounds like you two are a good team).

    Whoops, we're about to do it AGAIN.

    It's in our DNA. That's why it's so so so so so so so hard to stop.

    You're good folks, Alba, and you're doing it. Hang in there. Have a great day today!
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  7. Albatross

    Albatross Well-Known Member

    Here I was worrying nobody would know what I was talking about. I'm so glad I found this place. I guess I really have been at a grieving point right now, coming off an extremely angry phase. But this idea of allowing the grief and the anger and whatever else comes up to just work through and moving into a new "normal" (whatever THAT turns out to be) and accepting his behavior without trying to understand it is very helpful to me. Thanks for the laughs and the understanding.