Hello, I haven't posted in a couple months. My difficult child (16)-- Brief recap of the past year is-- had him arrested as a last ditch attempt to have treatment mandated, he failed out of outpatient, ran from inpatient, was expelled from day treatment-- with help of day treatment therapist and PO convinced him to go to 28 day inpatient. But rec was really for a year and day treatment was highly unlikely to take him back without a year. Therapist, PO, and my idea was-- get him to short term, then talk him into long term. That didn't work. And short term was very, very mean to me about that even being my plan-- they had no intention of doing anything but keep him for their time then sending him back-- if he couldn't get into day treatment, fine, just go to outpatient…. As I just read in someone else's post: don't even bother-- like that is going to work. If he came back home it would be sure failure. I told the short term I was not on board. Sent them a registered letter saying I wouldn't be picking him up. I had my therapist backing me. They were sooooooo mean. About how he's my responsibility. About child abandonment. About illegal. But I stood my ground. CPS got involved, of course. But that was what I wanted-- I figured out that if he goes into the CPS system he would be defaulted to an Residential Treatment Center (RTC) (Residential Treatment Center)-- whereas if he went home to me it would be status quo bc he wasn't willing to do more than status quo. He's just getting older. 2 years behind in school. Using. Intermittent violence (to object) and intimidation (to me). It was a hard road. But he is now in an Residential Treatment Center (RTC) for pre-placement and will be transferred, likely to another unit in the same facility, for placement. I have a voluntary placement so I am still his legal guardian responsible for all planning and decisions, but CPS is his physical guardian. I got this arrangement via my therapist writing a note saying that *I* need space-- I am not able to care for difficult child right now due to *my* mental health. I feel very not-fair and odd about that part. Because CPS is now checking in on me to make sure I'm going to therapy. I've seen the same guy for about 6 years and the relationship isn't under-mindable, but if it was that would be the way to do it-- check on me to make sure I'm complying. And I get that that is the same thing I've been doing to my kid for the last 6 years too-- trying to make sure he gets help. I see that it doesn't feel good. But…. And…. And…. I really would be just fine parenting most kids. It's just mine that I can't handle. It's too stressful not to feel safe at home. SO. Now he is where I want him. So, mostly, great and the situation is better than it was on most levels. But there is pressure to visit him. That's hard. Do I really want to-- no. It's a long trip and I am shaken woman. But I still have that mother thing-- I want to do anything I can for him. I found out recently that I can call him whenever. He asked me to come out today. I think the place isn't going to allow it. Thank G*d. We are already set that I will come Thurs or Fri. I think I am going to choose Fri so his treatment team will be there. We had a sort of ok phone call. The dog ate x, y store closed, z's knee surgery went well. Then it sort of turned to the old-- I have to get out of here. How can I get out of here. It's all your fault. I agreed to 28 days (I feel really guilty, because he did and I used it to switch him being away into him being away long term.) The place has had some problems with him acting out. He say he has to get permission to stand. Like every time you are sitting and you want to stand, you need permission. That is sort of heart breaking for me to hear-- though I trust that an extremely highly structured environment is what he needs-- or, at least, it can keep him safe until he's either ready to want help or old enough that keeping him safe isn't my job anymore. I'm sure he's suffering from my abandonment. I want to reach out to him. I want to have empathy for his "misery" in this environment. But I don't know how to respond to questions about how to get himself out of there by saying things like-- you have to work with the system-- without sounding totally un-empathetic. It would probably help me to read up on how to validate a person, because I feel myself invalidating him and I don't like it and don't know what to do….. I don't know how much of a relationship is possible right now. I feel like I'm relating to him mostly out of guilt. I'm happier when I put him out of my mind and go about my own healing-- stay on my own trajectory. Should I leave the phone conversation when he starts complaining? Why does he he even want me to visit? Why does the place want me to visit-- (my therapist is suspicious that they have an ulterior motive-- is their motive that he wants me to visit-- does he just want me to visit so he can drag me down? what do I owe him as his mother…….) I'm sort of to the next stage. But now what? Anyone been here?