Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by scent of cedar, Aug 26, 2013.

  1. scent of cedar

    scent of cedar New Member

    Events are following their own courses. difficult child is picking up on her life, making her own decisions, and needing/expecting less and less from us.

    This is a strange, uneventful place to suddenly be, given the chaos of the past year.

    Relationships are strained, outbursts common. There is much judgment of our responses to difficult child, both now and in the past, and of our protectiveness over difficult child's kids. difficult child believes that the things that happened came about because she was being prevented from talking to her children, and resents me for the part I played in that.

    I've told her that, given the same situation, I would do the same again.

    I've told her I am watching, now.

    There is so much anger here, bubbling away beneath the surface.

    The relationship between difficult child and the neighbor continues. I am conflicted about that. Part of the conflict has to do with understanding that husband and I are being disparaged and blamed by difficult child, and that the friend's loyalty has changed.

    Granddaughter is here. difficult child is parenting well.

    I am carrying around a lot of anger over everything. I am trying to believe for the best and blah, blah, blah...but it's tough.



    Also, difficult child is furious that we did not rent she and the bad man (and who knows who else) a room during the blizzard last winter when she was homeless. I was so surprised by the rage beneath difficult child's comments that I forgot we had contacted relatives living in the city, and that they were willing to collect difficult child at any time.

    But the bad man? No Way.

    difficult child is furious too that we would not let the bad man come and live here with her once we got back this Spring. She sees that as desertion, as hateful, as judgmental of the poor bad man, who is a wonderful person and only needs a chance.

    Bad man, by the way, is still in jail awaiting trial on the attempted vehicular homicide thing.

    Writing it out has helped me understand my own position a little more clearly.
  2. Rabbit

    Rabbit Member

    sending hugs
  3. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Im sorry Barb. As I am apt to say...she can get glad in the same hand she got mad in!
  4. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Oh boy Cedar, I am so sorry. Geez. It brings to mind the time my daughter spent living with us at the beginning of 2012..........that was very difficult. Like in your situation, emotions ran very high, there were many outbursts, daughter's blame of me and sense of entitlement proved to be too much for me. All the enabling choices I made in the past came back to haunt us. All the selfish childlike behaviors of my grown up daughter came back to haunt us as well. The disparities in giving and receiving, the unrealistic expectations, the inability of my daughter to take responsibility for her actions or to see what her actions caused in the lives of others, the decades of resentments, the judgments on both sides and the lack of respect and compassion for ME became glaringly obvious. As I've mentioned before, my daughter has not changed, but seeing all of that while she lived with us prompted me to make whatever changes necessary in MY life which would prevent ANYONE from treating me in the same fashion.

    Living with someone after years of not living with them brings all the issues that have been buried underneath the surface right in your face. The bad news is it is GRUELING. The good news is that once you become aware of all of it, you can change it. If your daughter is going to live with you or next door to you, perhaps the two of you entering into a counseling situation with a trained professional can help to unravel the issues. My daughter refuses all therapy on the grounds that there is nothing wrong with her so for me, it became about supporting myself. And, for me, that worked.

    I found that as I let go of the enabling patterns and kept insisting my daughter take care of her own life, the angers and outbursts increased until she was positive I would not back down. Then as time went on and it became clear that I had changed and was not enabling her anymore, almost all contact ceased. That's where I am now. It may change, I don't know, but for now, there's little connection. I tend to believe she is undergoing all the changes without me that I went through this last year and a half, but I could be wrong, she could simply be in her own world completely oblivious to my departure. Time will tell. I am okay either way.

    I'm sorry Cedar, this is a difficult situation for you and husband. It's like a time bomb waiting to completely explode............zig zagging around not wanting to step on a mine can be exhausting.

    I recall a day when I was driving with SO all over the county trying to get daughter's car out of the impound lot while she was in was a harrowing couple of days............I just broke down and couldn't stop crying...........all the years of dealing with her just came rushing out in tears..............I don't know that I had ever cried quite like that. That day SO said to me, "it's like you're in a row boat together and you are frantically trying to desperately plug up all the holes and bucket out all the water so you don't drown...............while your daughter just keeps drilling new holes." That breakdown and then that image were a turning point for me. I didn't know it then, but that's when it all began changing.

    Sending you understanding hugs and 'boatloads' of empathy...........hang in there...........
  5. scent of cedar

    scent of cedar New Member

    Thank you, each of you. Knowing you will respond as you do helps so much.

    I am trying to look at this from a position of vulnerability aka Brene Brown. Definitely at the edge of my comfort zone, and trying to be comfortable in that. Trying to be compassionate to difficult child, too...but I think she is trying to say as little to husband and myself as possible.

    It's sort of heartbreaking, but it is what it is.

    As we understand it now, difficult child will be leaving with granddaughter to live in the northern part of the state with granddaughter's father sometime this week. That was always an option, but difficult child and husband got into it a few days ago and husband told her that, while he would do it, he didn't want her to come South. (Which is no big deal, really, because difficult child can always come down via the neighbor.)

    So, not the best solution maybe, but at least time for everyone to calm down. difficult child has been so disrespectful and scornful. It's really something.