Having to let go with love

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by Heartbroken mom, Jan 14, 2018.

  1. Heartbroken mom

    Heartbroken mom New Member

    New to this forum I know our stories are individual but the themes are helping me

    Mentally ill adult son 41 who had a pyschotic break at 30
    Was enabled by girlfriend which allowed him not to get help
    I tried to intervene got services for him he refused mental health program
    Treated early onewith anti psychotics but he did not continue
    6 years girlfriend enabled .he gets worse mental illness until she leaves
    Had not worked or left apartment for 6 years
    Again I go out get him into a program he refuses...part of his mental illness agnosoia is not knowing he is mentally ill
    He lands at my mothers house ( wont admit he is mentally ill)
    Year and half...still not treatment enabled to decline
    Finally she can't deal ..my brother sends to Florida saying start over..delusional son goes again I tried to get him in treatment ..he refused took money from brother to leave state
    Could not come to me as in delusional psychotic state in past has threatened me ...he has never been violent or had any problems with law but does has psychotic episodes ..clearly mentally ill...unstable

    Worked with Nami...I understand laws..of not being able to have mentally ill treated..my son is college educated ...so hard to watch decline and be powerless to help..systems are very difficult to navigate

    Once in Florida...of course couldn't get it together still untreated mentally ill..then brother died no more money..ended up homeless...didn't know where was ..finally found out ...pointed in directions...but very difficult there...mother swooped in and put him in hotel,after,6 months in shelter....she has been paying last

    Last 3 1/2 years in a hotel...untreated...enabled but not on street...over 400 pounds ...paranoid not leaving room....

    I have had to let go..and suffered a lot ...but recently I had connected to him as I feared my mother was going to die and what would happen...we connected ...clearly mental illness worsened ...wants me to bring him to me...I told him no he has to get treatment...all this time. Now 12 years ...he has not had proper diagnosis so he could not get disabilty....

    My mother did die ..a month ago so now support over...he is fearful which is so heartbreaking but I have told him he can't come here..he has to go to doctor...he did...next go for evaluation

    I am dealing with the fear of the trajectory of this
    And I am here so I can remember
    I have to love and let go
    Be there as I can
    But not take in...
    I have limited funds and am doing the best I can to connect him to services

    I have my own devastation as my beloved husband died only 4 months ago and I am in deep grief

    I can see how it would be easy for me to lose myself...in this grief on top of grief...

    This forum is helpful because I can see how being so vulnerable and another loss....is too much to bear
    But I need to hold onto taking care of myself ...I am putting up boundaries with love...it's a balance...
    Resting today...telling myself...I tried many times and I have to know I can't live his life even when it is mental illness..he will be homeless or worse

    I have set boundaries and he has taken Some steps for himself ...first time in 12 years...he does know how to guilt me and I can fall into that...but I know this is bigger than life ...I have support of friends but hearing from those who have done this is so helpful

    I have a therapist...but reading about the boundaries and mom guilt helps me know I am not alone In The anguish but I have enough to just care for myself now....
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  2. Tanya M

    Tanya M Living with an attitude of gratitude Staff Member

    Welcome Heartbroken mom!

    I'm so sorry for what you are going through but glad you found us here. You certainly have had a rough time dealing with your son.

    From what you have shared it is clear that you have done all you can and then some.

    I'm glad that you realize you need to take care of yourself. Hold firm on your boundaries and please know that when the guilt tries to sneak in, you have nothing to feel guilty about.
    If love alone could save our difficult adult children we would not need this site.
    I'm glad you are here with us. Keep posting and let us know how you are doing.

    ((HUGS)) to you......................
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  3. Heartbroken mom

    Heartbroken mom New Member

    Thank you reaching out can't do this alone
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  4. Kalahou

    Kalahou Active Member

    I am glad you found us here, Heartbroken mom. I am so sorry for the losses you have experienced in your family on top of the difficult situation with your son. You sound like you have a lot of clarity about the situation and your need to be strong. If you have not already read the detachment article, you can find it here. >>> Article on Detachment

    It's encouraging that you said your son has actually taken some steps for himself. You are following the right direction in setting boundaries for yourself, while offering what support you can to encourage your son to get the help he needs. Stay with us here, and keep posting and seeing others' posts, to gain their wisdom, comfort and strength.

    It is a relief to share your sorrow and pain here where people understand. It is a safe place and you are not alone.
    Take care. I am following along and welcome you to the forum.
  5. Sam3

    Sam3 Active Member

    Bless you and your son. Though he is living a difficult life, and is not accepting help, he is still lucky to have his mother’s love and wishes to ease and comfort.

    One of the more difficult things about these situations, I think, is that there are so few occasions to show them kindness, because of the risk of enabling or sending mixed messages. But i am trying to let my son know that I love him and am always here. Just that.
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    Last edited: Jan 15, 2018
  6. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Heartbroken mom, welcome. You've been traveling a rough road for a long time, I'm sorry it's been so difficult, you've done everything you can do for you son.......and then some.

    Dealing with the grief of your mother's passing and your husband's passing must be almost unbearable......I am so sorry for your losses.

    You've done a good job of caring for your son for a long time, you've done all the right things....and I know how much it hurts our hearts when our adult kids struggle with mental illness.....

    Continue to take very good care of yourself and continue to share your story......it helps so much to be heard by others who understand, who've been there. I'm so glad you're here......you're not alone.
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  7. Littleboylost

    Littleboylost On the road unwanted to travel

    Welcome HB mom
    You have been through so much heart ache and loss.

    What really shines through in your story is the love you have for your son. Not enabling them is so very difficult.

    I am so sorry for the loss of your husband, brother and mother.

    I so hope your son seeks help for his illness.

    You are in good company here. Many people will share similar experiences with you and support you.

    Sending you a huge hug.
  8. Heartbroken mom

    Heartbroken mom New Member

    Thank you all for the support....today I told my son if he wanted support he had to go get a mental health evaluation..he agreed...it's so hard but I see him finally taking steps...praying he gets to those who can assist him and start the process towards disability which might give him a chance...
    Agree with navigating the thin line of encouraging. And enabling..but we all need to know we are loved
    Yes my grief is double time ....doing the best I can. Thank you
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  9. Heartbroken mom

    Heartbroken mom New Member

    Checking in..
    He went to Doctor...and now appointment for mental health...slow process..and heartbreaking...because there will be no easy answer here..each step is complicated and so hard to watch..services are limited and because he has been untreated so long and isn't diagnosed has to wait till 29th..the other place takes over a month to get any services...feels like a no win...
  10. Littleboylost

    Littleboylost On the road unwanted to travel

    It is a struggle...the wait....being in Limbo....hang in there. He is blessed to have you as his advocate. Those with out one get no help truly they don’t. My son was supposed to fill out his rehab intake forms by himself. Holy crap if he could have filled them out he wouldn’t need rehab. Almost feels impossible at times. My work of advice is push and question and even threaten when you have to. My son wouldn’t even be in a position for a long term rehab program if I had not done all of that.
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  11. Heartbroken mom

    Heartbroken mom New Member

    Well..he has taken some steps..saw dr...on rx...we will see...still will have to ditch soon..trying to get him connected to services and see medication helps..first time in 12 years he is finally admitting he needs help
    Walking that fine line...
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  12. Heartbroken mom

    Heartbroken mom New Member

    Not ditch..detach....maybe that's how it feels but really it is about allowing him even if he is mentally ill ...take responsibility
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  13. Heartbroken mom

    Heartbroken mom New Member

    Check in
    Finally letting go...have connected him with services but he stopped helping himself as he is so used to being enabled and just wants to continue just being paid for and wasting time on video games
    I have been thru the roller coaster again and have decided to let go with love
    I have gotten him connected to all services
    He knows where to go for help
    He really wants the cushioned hell of not doing anything but others pay
    I am finally taking back my focus to me
    I still will give text support when appropriate but mostly pointing him back to services
    I have an excellent therapist who is helping me keep my strength
    I pray for a good outcome and put my actions back on me where it can actually work
    I haven't written Here a lot but have read all the journeys and so helped me see
    Not alone
    And the detaching was the answer
    Prayers that he finds the help he need..that might mean in a hospital
    But it is his journey and he has shown he is quite capable when he has to be
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  14. wisernow

    wisernow wisernow

    My thoughts are with you. You have done ALL that you possibly could! It is now up to him. Whether he chooses to get help or not is in his court. Please focus on you ! You have been through far too much. Sending you hugs and hope that you can find your way to peace and calm!
  15. New Leaf

    New Leaf Well-Known Member

    Sending love and light HBM. We are in similar situations, with exception of contact. My two are out there somewhere wayfinding. I have no idea of status, they have gone into the shadows for months now. Prayer helps to fill the void that can overcome me with grief, if I allow it to. It is not an easy path for us all here, but with understanding that there are just some things we have no control over, and hope that our beloveds will one day stand up and find their true potential, we can learn to live our own lives with peace. It does take work, I am so glad you have a good therapist. You are worth the effort, you matter. Keep keeping on and live well. Thank you for sharing your journey and the strength you have to find your way through.
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  16. Heartbroken mom

    Heartbroken mom New Member

    Thank you for support...he is in shelter..will see..he asked me why I hate him...I told him I love him...it is so hard even if it's his only real chance ...I am so grateful for all of you...tears but holding strong...letting go with love quite a challenge...
  17. New Leaf

    New Leaf Well-Known Member

    It is a challenge every day. When the tears come, let them flow. It is a certain kind of grief we go through and I believe it is important to honor that and feel what we have to feel, let it out.
    My two will do the same, try to put it in my lap. “Why do you hate me.” If only they knew the hell we have been through as if their consequences were our own.
    That is also a form of gaslighting, trying to reach into our hearts and manipulate us through guilting us into believing that standing firm is rejecting them. Hating them.
    There is nothing further from the truth. We are saying with affirmative action that they are quite capable of forging their way, if they so desire. They can. They can do it.
    We will not be on this earth forever to care for their every need, nor should we shackle them by doing so.
    When my two were in my home, they brought their chaos and drama. Disrespected the simple concept of contributing to the household. Stole from us. Damaged property. Carried on with partying, then slept for days while we went off to work.
    It would be no different if it remained status quo.
    They reject the ways of society, but see no problem living off of their parents, or anyone else who would take them in.
    It is no way for them or us to live.
    When I am saddened by that void, or wonder how they are faring, I remind myself of the impossible situations when they were living in my home, aimlessly drifting in a drug haze, taking advantage of our efforts to help.
    There was no change.
    It takes a tremendous amount of love to see the black hole enabling creates for them and us, to say no more and to stand by that.
    It takes courage and strength.
    Remember that if your son utters those words again.
    Love says no.
    Love says you have it in you to find your way and succeed.
    The other side to this, is we matter too. It was awful having my two in their past and current state in my home.
    I felt a prisoner, so much stress and anxiety. They cared not, how their choices effected me, or my then ailing husband.
    It was a horrible mess.
    No way to live. It is an imbalance, the scales are tipped for their self indulgent behaviors, using and abusing any “help” they receive, looking at it with entitlement rather than gratitude, then shoving it back in our faces with indecent and unacceptable attitudes and choices.
    Not going back there.
    You have done so much for your son, made the phone calls, laid the groundwork.
    He knows where to go for help.
    You are a loving and kind mother. Your son is ill, he needs to recognize that and want to live differently. You have seen that if he wants to, he can.
    Same for my two. Addicted to meth, using it long enough to suffer the psychosis that goes with that.
    I pray for them daily, but know I am not the one to fix them.
    I am thankful for the blessed years I had raising them. They are not little children anymore.
    It is time for them to figure out what they want in life.
    While they are on their journey,we are on one too.
    That is to figure out even with these difficult circumstances, how to live the best rest of our lives.I am convinced that is tantamount to them doing well. That we be in the forefront of this battle holding our banners high. The goal being that as we continue to find our way through, we are saying with word and deed, “If I can do this thing called life, so can you.”
    The answer to “Why do you hate me?” Is.......I love you with all my heart, enough to say enough. Enough to say that I have taught you as much as I possibly could, you are an adult, find your way and your potential. Make good choices.
    In between all of that, we are not rugs to be tread upon, nor things to be used or abused.
    We are their parents. We love them, but they must learn to live their paths.
    Love and hugs to you, please know you are not alone. In your sadness, I am there, say a prayer, wipe away your tears, take deep breaths.
    Find joy in the simple things.
    We walk together, one step at a time. We may falter and stumble, but each time we get up and brush off our proverbial bloodied knees, mend our torn hearts, we grow a bit stronger, and furrow our brow of determination to march on as best we can.
    Peace be to you.
    Chin up, you are doing the right thing for you and your son.
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  18. Littleboylost

    Littleboylost On the road unwanted to travel

    Not easy and the right choices are often not the easy choices. Your are in my thoughts and I do hope he comes to realize he needs help and finds his way way to it. You have shown him the way. The rest is truly his story to write.
  19. Heartbroken mom

    Heartbroken mom New Member

    thank you...New Leaf ...I printed your answer so I can look at it when I get weak in the knees... I have done so much...It is his turn and time...letting go is hard but I know the alternative for either one of us is not the answer...holding my heart and all of those who know this journey with deep compassion....we are the ones who need the support as we are the ones who have endured the heartbreak...I will get stronger and have that banner image...thank you!!!!!
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  20. New Leaf

    New Leaf Well-Known Member

    HBM, you and I and many others here have suffered much loss on top of dealing with loved ones off the rails. It seems a test from the universe at times, just to get through the day to day stuff with everything else on our hearts and minds. When the weight of it gets overbearing, I turn to my higher power and ask for help. That is what has saved me time and again. I don’t know what is worse, knowing what’s going on with our beloveds, or not knowing. I just feel that each one of us has a purpose in this life and some come to realize that before others. We all have our challenges, setbacks and triumphs. Life is hard but there is still much beauty to be found in the simple things.
    Thank you for sharing your story and for standing strong despite everything you have faced. It is a most difficult thing to see our loved ones struggling to find their way, I am hoping that they will learn to aim higher to create a better future for themselves.
    Maybe one day, they will understand and appreciate that we stepped back, so they could step up.
    Love and peace to you!!!!