I am back

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by Triedntrue, Oct 11, 2019 at 5:28 PM.

  1. Triedntrue

    Triedntrue Active Member

    I haven't posted on here in awhile. I feel like I don't have anything worth saying. I have been reading some of your posts and am glad to see some new people as well as familiar people.
    So update thought my son was doing better has been controlling his temper with me anyway. Had a good job but for various reasons missed too much work got fired. Got a new job even better thought everthing was going well. Lost rights to his son but ex still continues to harass him. On and off with new girlfriend. He was able to walk to work but then she kicked him out and he found a place to stay but couldnt get to work no vehicle no licence. Lost that job. Found another after a while but cant get there. The issue with me is constant favors usually involving buying him things or rides or phone bills and on and on. He is 37. I feel bad that since he is not yelling at me but i cant keep handing him money. Funny part i sent him an email telling him i was blocking him because the only thing he ever contacted me for was a favor and i had to stop so i could get my finances straightened out. His reply was that family was a support system and we were supposed to help each other out. I cant remember last time he did anything for me or his father. He never has money for christmas or birthdays for his daughter. No child support. So how is he part of the give and take. Anyway i blocked him and got a nasty email in return and feel like i have set things back. However he just got kicked out again and girlfriend let him come back temporarily. Where he was staying she said he was using. I cant call him out on that without getting her in trouble. Thanks for letting me vent.
     
  2. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    I almost laughed out loud. He does have a sense of humor.

    This is entirely ridiculous. Family support is a two-way street. It's not forcing parents to the poorhouse and using up their retirement.

    Triedandtrue. Do you feel guilty that you've stopped the gravy train? If so, why?

    This is an able bodied grown man who is living badly. He is not a child. This is a lifestyle. What can you do to change somebody who wants to live this way? Once all of your money and your health are gone, your son will find a way...I don't think you're really helping him by helping him to continue living this way. The same way I don't help my own son who is now 31 when I help him to live badly.

    I read or heard somewhere that enabling is doing something for somebody that they can and should do for themselves. Your son can and should be able to support himself, live independently, get around, pay his bills, etc. without his Mom.

    If he is living in an area without public transportation, he can move or get a motorcycle or a bike. If it's snowing and that's unsafe he can carpool. He could decide to go to Alaska and work in the fisheries and save $60,000 in a summer, and buy a house for cash in lots of states.

    Our sons don't want to. They prefer that their Moms do it for them. (I always wanted to go work in Alaska. Alas, I am now too old. But I can still go visit.)

    I am responding to say Hi. And to tell you, I am dealing with the same thing. You already know everything I have written. You don't need me to tell you. I'm just backing you up. I'm glad you checked in.
     
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    Last edited: Oct 12, 2019 at 8:00 AM
  3. Triedntrue

    Triedntrue Active Member

    Thank you copa i just needed the reinforcement
     
  4. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    I was curious where in the USA you can buy a house for less than 50k. I guessed that would be places like the deep South. I was surprised to learn that Ohio, Maryland, New York, Iowa, Indiana, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Texas, and Illinois, are among the many states where even larger cities (like Toledo or Akron) have houses for 50k or less. That would mean that a down payment could be as little as 2k to 5k. And if he worked in Alaska for a summer, or in the Shale Oilfields, he could pay cash!

    I recognize that your son likely has poor credit. But people rebuild their credit. He could at any point choose to change course. As can my own son.

    Every single thing I do to help my son do things poorly and be dependent, reinforces his ability to stay the same. Still. I help him. Why? Because just like with your son, he has changed some. And I guess I feel as if I have more power than I really do. Our help is not what gets them to change. Their decisions do.

    I know you are willing to help your son. But you are choosing to do so in ways that do not incentivize his staying dependent upon you or others. This is a good thing!! I know how hard this is, as I am trying to do the same thing.

    I am very glad you posted this thread. It's very helpful to me to think this through with you.

    PS Many people with bipolar become stable and fully functional on medication.
     
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2019 at 7:49 PM
  5. Triedntrue

    Triedntrue Active Member

    Yes we have tried so many times to get him on medications but if he starts he does so because he is forced and doesnt stay on them. I tried to tell him why i was blocking him but i guess my husband is right you cant reason. Just to remind myself( not to share,)I sat and wrote a list of recent "favors" and how much they cost and it was ridiculous. What bothers me is that is the only reason he calls. I think both of our sons feel that they are entitled to whatever we have whether or not we want to give it. I tried to provide things that he needed to work because i felt that him working was and is important but things like he needed a tool belt and 2 tools and we go to store and he has to have this and this and this. I resent this because he has lost or left so many tools behind at various places he has been kicked out of or hasnt had the means to move them. I do know that when he is working he has more pride in himself which is a good thing. I think both of us and our s.o. have tried but i have to ask myself if i didnt replace the tools would he stop leaving them behind? If your son has to do without the house will he be more thankful? The homelessness is so frightening for both of us. But if we provide the tools the house the other many things we provide does it allow them to assume that they wont have to struggle long so it makes it bearable. I fantasize that if i win the lottery i could buy him a house so he would never be homeless but when i am realistic i know he would problem destroy it or not pay taxes or let some woman move in and kick him out. Copa you and i must be a lot alike. We need to give each other strenghth to stand strong and prepare them for when we are no longer there to provide a safety net. Prayers to us and guidance for what is the right thing to do to truly help but not enable our sons. Also that we find peace with those decisions.
     
  6. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    Yes.
    I sat with this for a few minutes, staring at the computer screen, because what my son does, seems different but not. When he is in the metro a few hours from me, and he runs out of money, he no longer calls for me to send money to Walmart or Western Union. He borrows from other people. But that went on years. And I did it. Sending no more than $80. Somehow he found some strength or dignity to stop asking me But I don't think it was respect for what I have, or caring that I keep my money.

    Now that he has been living with M he is running out of money every month, sometimes as early as the 10th. He's now in the street and I think he is close to having no money.

    Every month he's been back he has run out of money, with the expectation that we pick up the slack. It's horrible.

    I think about this all of the time:
    Am I putting a false bottom in his life, beyond which he will fall? Clearly I am. And am I teaching him that somebody will always be there to provide that bottom, when in reality they won't?

    I worry all of the time about when I die. And I can't keep him safe. Yet I realize that I can't keep him safe, now.

    And just like with your son, if we let him, he'd eat us alive. Not out of meanness, but because he only sees things from his own perspective. He has no sense of the whole. That everybody's welfare matters. Only his own. It's not necessarily selfishness. (Although it is. } It's egocentrism. He and his needs and desires are at the center of the world. And he sees not much else.

    I have worried these past 12 years enough for 10 lifetimes. That must be why I do what I do. When he's at home there is a bottom line in life for me.

    I guess I help him when I can't bear not doing so. There have been long periods when I could stop. For me, the longer this goes on the weaker and more vulnerable I get. Sadly.

    Take care triedandtrue.
     
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2019 at 6:48 AM
  7. BusynMember

    BusynMember Active Member

    I can only speak my experience.

    Foolishly we bought Kay three cars. The first was brand new. We thought she would have pride enough to take care of a shiny new car and get a job to pay some of the expenses. The others were old cars to get her to work.

    She had a few odd jobs when young that she never kept. She would stop going because everyone picked on her or the boss was a jerk or something was unfair. The cars were probably used for shoplifting, drugs and parties. She had terrible accidents which we paid for. Stupid much!

    Kay never ran with the perks we offered her. Now she is trying to keep a cheap apartment in a bad neighborhood. If she and Lee can't, a cousin of Lee's offered a twelve year old camper to them and they plan to live in it in California on the streets. Kay is actually excited about this. Now I get this info second hand as we are blocked but it chills me.

    I think our kids find alternative ways to make money and buy drugs. I know Kay has panhandled and shoplifted and sold drugs, even drugs she and Lee possibly don't use. Yet maybe they do use these drugs. I hope not.

    It is a sad journey for the parents so we need to stand up for ourselves and our other loved ones.

    God bless you.
     
  8. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    They call this boondocking, I have learned. Where you live for free. Usually, in State Parks, but lots of people are doing it in cities where it is prohibited. I have seen places where dozens and dozens of RVs are parked, usually in industrial-type areas of cities. Then after a while the police will force them to disperse, and they go somewhere else nearby.

    As far as Kay's welfare living in a camper, I think she will be safe. She seems to be moving more and more towards a lifestyle that reflects her interior state of being, which seems chaotic, undisciplined, selfish, and amoral. Sadly. To be able to even think about letting go a beloved child, is beyond the pale. She seems incapable of actually empathizing with him. Maybe it's the drugs. Maybe Lee has a Svengali-effect on her. Who knows? Does it even matter, the cause?

    If she does Plan B, which would mean that Jaden could go with your daughter, (with legal guardianship to protect them both), is this not a good thing, for Jaden and for the family? Would this not set the stage to establish that the parents have abandoned him, and to have a family where he is safe and secure and stable?
     
  9. Triedntrue

    Triedntrue Active Member

    Copa said

    And just like with your son, if we let him, he'd eat us alive. Not out of meanness, but because he only sees things from his own perspective. He has no sense of the whole. That everybody's welfare matters. Only his own. It's not necessarily selfishness. (Although it is. } It's egocentrism. He and his needs and desires are at the center of the world. And he sees not much else

    This is so true He doesnt care if he maxes my cards as long as he gets what he wants. They manipulate us into believing either that it is cruel not to help or that this time will change things. Busy, I also bought cars/trucks or repaired or paid insurance . He has tried recently to get me to sell him our second car at a discount so he can work. He has a suspended licence and no insurance. I told him i will never help him buy a vehicle again. He not only destroys them he drives under influence i will not be a part of someone else getting hurt. He emailed me again this morning to let me know that blocking him is an act of selfishness. He also tried to insinuate that it is my fault if he goes to hell for something he is going to do. I have not replied only prayed. He is so good at this and i am so bad. It is taking all my strength to not call and say what are you going to do. That is what he wants and what i have do e so many times.
     
  10. Triedntrue

    Triedntrue Active Member

    Busy said
    had a few odd jobs when young that she never kept. She would stop going because everyone picked on her or the boss was a jerk or something was unfair. The cars were probably used for shoplifting, drugs and parties. She had terrible accidents which we paid for. Stupid much!

    Sounds so familiar!
     
  11. BusynMember

    BusynMember Active Member

    If Kay and Lee become homeless, they plan to bring Jaden with them in the camper! Amy is in touch with relatives that Kay has kept on her FB page and she spills all her plans there. The minute Amy knows they are homeless, she is going to get a lawyer, already named, and file for guardianship.

    This will be tricky as Kay is already not in our state so the lawyer has to be from her state. We also plan to call her states CPS. We need to act before they leave for parts unknown. She favors California but if she gets an inkling that we suspect her new destination is California there is nothing stopping her from going elsewhere.

    We are lucky that a few cousins were willing to pretend that they are on Kay's side so that she doesn't delete them and once in a while texts them. This is all we have.

    If she succeeds in taking this baby to homeless land, we will be done with her.
     
  12. Triedntrue

    Triedntrue Active Member

    So sorry for these additional worries. When our grandchildren are involved it makes it so much harder. My sons rights to his son were terminated. His ex went into court with a court appointed child advocate who investigates and determines what is best for the child. The ex came loaded with all of his court transcripts. How she could provide a better environment and on and on . My advice is to get whatever documentation you can. Much of it is online. Facebook posts. Nasty emails . Hope this helps.
     
  13. BusynMember

    BusynMember Active Member

    Thanks. I am sorry that your son lost his parental rights to his own son. Must feel terrible, as if you lost those rights. We take it so personally and, of course, we always hope our kids eventually step up and give us a happy ending. And themselves.

    As for documenting FB, my cousins have been doing all they can. Kay posts a lot so hopefully Amy will be in an advantageous place to figure out if Kay plans to bolt. Amy has never done anything illegal. Kay has. She doesn't exactly brag about it, but she hints about her lifestyle on FB. Hints and jokes of shoplifting, dumpster diving, prostitution (shudder), panhandling. Pictures of California streets with RVs parked from corner to corner. Jokes about different drugs.

    We do hope to save Jaden, but it's not all up to us and we don't want to tip our hand early so that Lee and Kay get scared and take off too soon, before anything is planned out. Amy and Rick, my son, are willing to drive down to Kay's hellhole and grab Jaden, if necessary, and then bring them to police attention, if they call the police.

    All of this is very amateurish and we don't know if it will work.

    It is extremely hard when a grandchild is in the middle of the mess.
     
  14. WiseChoices

    WiseChoices Active Member

    For so long I believed myself to be a victim and at the mercy of my adult children's moves .We explained once that we had to think about retirement now and could not continue to support financially. We were met with scorn and egotism. I realized then that my DCs do not care (and perhaps cant) about my financial survival and only about theirs . And that explaining and wanting understanding does not work .

    What has worked for me was
    1. Shut down the attacks
    I no longer accept blame or attacks. As soon as that starts, I hold up my hand signaling stop, will verbally state that I don't accept blame or attacks on my person, and / or walk away.
    2. Work on myself. I also don't attack or blame . I realize that the only control I have is over myself: my thoughts , feelings , and actions . I use these to keep myself calm , to not react but respond , and to set boundaries even when I am scared and then stick to them even when I am scared. This builds my growing muscle.
    3. I don't explain my motives or reasons or my situation anymore .I tell them when I chose to pay for something (e.g. work pants for a new job as my contribution towards encouragement) and I tell them something is their responsibility when I feel it is.
    4. Because of No 1, I don't get flack about it anymore.
    5. I give lots of encouragement and assist with issues by offering suggestions and asking if they are desired. DC1 got $500 speeding ticket and was worried about being able to pay it, so I offered to make a schedule of money he has coming in (paycheck) and money going out (bills) with him. He did want that advice and thanked me.

    I have learned that it is my job to hold in my power which is given to me by my Higher Power and not give it away. When I give in, I give it away. When I feel obligated, I give it away. Nobody can take my power as long as I stand in God's grace and in empowerment rather than victim mode.
     
  15. Triedntrue

    Triedntrue Active Member

    It sounds like you have made a plan that works for you wise choices. My trouble/weakness is saying no in his presence i def have to work on that.
     
  16. WiseChoices

    WiseChoices Active Member

    Yes, I understand that feeling oh so well .I still push up against that all the time. The fear is there . Things get better though when I confront my fear and show myself courage. I get respect back when I show that I respect myself. It's amazing. The fear lies to me.