I am back. :(


Well-Known Member
Well, I am back, unfortunately. My son came back home 3 years ago, went back to college and is now 5 classes (one semester) away from a business degree in Supply Chain/Logistics with a 3.8 GPA. He has lived with my 92 year old mother in law with dementia for the past year a few miles down the road from us.

I have been in 'secretary' mode with his school for the past 3 years. I don't do the work but I helped him keep his due dates straight and kept an eye on announcements, he didn't want to do online classes and he's had to do far more than he wanted to because of the pandemic, so I jumped in to rescue. But it's been a struggle every semester, he procrastinates badly and it drives me nuts as I'm the opposite. And then I think he's getting a degree in logistics? But he can't handle his own? Just quit already! Well, last month my daughter and I were on a weekend trip to a spa retreat (our first trip ever just the two of us), I thought I had sent him all the info he needed for classes, but he blew my phone up when I didn't have it on me. When I retrieved my phone from the spa locker, I had several missed calls and texts telling me he hoped I die on the car ride home, etc and my daughter had texts instructing her to kill herself.

So we had the locks changed, and my husband has been dealing with son exclusively, and he ended up making all A's again. But last week, son and husband got in a phone argument over not being able to come over and get something, and it escalated. My daughter is going through a breakup with her boyfriend of 5 years (it was headed that way on the spa trip), and we have moved her back in to our home, she is really going through it. Since I wrote last, after she graduated home school she went directly to esthetician school and is working successfully in a spa for a year (after a couple of years off and on other places - but the pandemic really affected her launch). She is trying so hard to get her life back together and even though this breakup is breaking her heart, she does what we all should do and keep going to work, keep being professional, I am so proud of her. But out of the blue after the phone argument with his dad, he sends her a text (she's at work) telling her there's still time to kill herself. We kicked him out of mother in law's house last Thursday, he's been staying with friends. He says he's not on drugs but he is hanging out with some people we don't like. He ditched them for a couple of years, but a year or so ago one of them committed suicide and he got back with them for some reason. Probably boredom and lack of drugs.

I know I've made mistakes in being his secretary and we just got more enmeshed during this time. I don't know what kind of advice I want or need, but I'm just so very sad. There is just a dark hole where he used to be, I got my hopes up and now they are shattered. I'm going through issues with my marriage, my job (training for a new one), and I had to put my dad in a nursing home in March close to me, his wife just gave up and made me deal with it even though I barely even have a relationship with them, and the paperwork/finances/admin stuff of his I just got handed to me in a jumble of papers. That's what my daughter and I were trying to recover from with the spa trip, and it backfired big time. My son was living with my mother in law with dementia, but he didn't do anything for her, he was just a person sitting in a room with his door shut, but at least he was there. So now we have to figure out what to do about that and she doesn't have the money to be placed like my dad does. It's just so overwhelming I just need to vent. Thanks for listening!


100% better than I was but not at 100% yet

I'm so sorry to hear this. When it rains it pours. My son has been on my last nerve as well but that's a story for another day.

I keep praying for everything in our lives to be better and I will do the same for you because that's all I know how to do to help myself or others.


Well-Known Member
I once was a very codapendent person who thought I had to fix all my loved ones. I also knew I had to "help" everyone and please them even if I didn't want to. I did many things for many people that I really did not feel good about and the voice in my head told me "you are selfish if you don't do it."

You maybe sound like most codapendents...overworked, tired, and not appreciated. People like your mother in law and, yes, your son want people like you and me to do everything for them...to make all their problems go away. And we do our best to accommodate even abusive people. We'll, I did at least.

I had to go to serious therapy once a week plus a 12 Step Group to stop taking on the problems others threw at me. I literally never said "No." To anyone. Today I do just say "No." Not my monkey. Not my circus.

My relatives can do things for themselves or find another helper. Sure, they may have to PAY for that help, and I was always free of charge, but their problem was NOT mine! My kids...I no longer have any interest in saving my daughter Kay. I won't do it anymore. It did not work. Only Kay can fix Kay, not me. It's up to her. Or not. Whether or mot she does better is 100% up to her. My help doesn't help. I finally get it.

You did not ask for advice. I am telling you my story, what changed me. I look back now and think about what a fool everyone must have thought I was. The people who wanted the most from me didn't care one bit about me. I no longer say yes....but it is still hard. It always will be, but I am strong with God and I ruin to Him when I am at my weakest. I recommend a great book..."Codependent No More" bt Melody Beattie. Changed my life.

I wish you luck and send love!


Well-Known Member
Thank you all, and good to hear from you again RN! I am trying very hard to control my guilt that I have not done enough or what society thinks a 'daughter' (in my dad's situation) or a 'mother' (in my son's). In the end, though, I am a mortal human and I have taken to telling myself this over and over - 'I deserve release'. I would not judge anyone else on my actions or inactions, I would have empathy and compassion for myself if seen from outside myself. I am trying to feel what I feel as 'guilt' as 'grief', but that just ends up with me in a chronic sorrow state so I think I can act my way out of it, which usually means becoming codependent again. I've got to figure out other ways to get out of this sad state without jumping back into the demands of others. Gosh, this has been going on for so long now.


100% better than I was but not at 100% yet
Dang it's exhausting!! I know it.

Like I told my son, I'll stop worrying (when he says "stop worrying") when I KNOW that you will always make the right decision like your two older brothers!!

He said ok. I think he does know that he still has a long way to go...