Letting Go Takes Love


100% better than I was but not at 100% yet
To let go does not mean to stop caring,
it means I can't do it for someone else.

To let go is not to cut myself off,
it's the realization I can't control another.

To let go is not to enable,
but allow learning from natural consequences.

To let go is to admit powerlessness,
which means the outcome is not in my hands.

To let go is not to try to change or blame another,
it's to make the most of myself.

To let go is not to care for,
but to care about.

To let go is not to fix,
but to be supportive.

To let go is not to judge,
but to allow another to be a human being.

To let go is not to be in the middle arranging all the outcomes,
but to allow others to affect their destinies.

To let go is not to be protective,
it's to permit another to face reality.

To let go is not to deny,
but to accept.

To let go is not to nag, scold or argue,
but instead to search out my own shortcomings and correct them.

To let go is not to adjust everything to my desires,
but to take each day as it comes and cherish myself in it.

To let go is not to criticize or regulate anybody,
but to try to become what I dream I can be.

To let go is to not regret the past,
but to grow and live for the future.


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Love this ... so needed!
I printed this and carried it around all day, re-reading it many times - on the bus, in store line, at my desk, walking the dog, washing dishes and more.

Letting go is never done. We just don't let go and it's gone. Letting go is a moment by moment / day by day process, and a moment by moment / day by day growth toward freedom for both ourselves and our difficult children.
Thanks, RN.


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Th anks RN. This is good..... I think my struggle about letting go is somehow is my not helping him going to hurt him? But on my walk this morning I came to the conclusion that right now for me I need to give up.... not give up on him.... but give up trying to help him. I need to give up on the idea that I can help him. I think for my son to get into recovery he really needs to want it and to be willing to do whatever it takes.... and I think by being such a safety net for him he has not had to do whatever it takes... when it gets hard he stops doing what it takes and does what he wants because he knows i will help him pick up the pieces. So when and if he calls my plan is to tell him I will always be there to love, listen and talk to him but I am no longer a source of income.

so ready to live

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TL there's a saying "sometimes you have to give up on people, not because you don't care but because they don't".
I need to give up.... not give up on him.... but give up trying to help him.
This is where so many of us are.
So when and if he calls my plan is to tell him I will always be there to love, listen and talk to him but I am no longer a source of income.
Sounds strong, I like it. Aspire to peace for yourself, I never want to say something is best, (who am I to know) but this makes the most sense to me. I, like many of us still journey on, in this huge maze. It is good to not feel alone, isn't it? Keep sanding off the rough edges, you'll get this. We are strong. All. Prayers.


100% better than I was but not at 100% yet
My husband sent me this poem by text yesterday at lunch. Naturally I was teary when I was reading it; luckily I was alone. I actually had to relook to see WHO sent it. This is not like him; he doesn't do the feelings stuff.

He then called me and told me he just had lunch with one of his sales representatives who sent it to him. It turns out they started talking and this guy had a huge problem with drugs and alcohol starting at age 16. His parents were very affluent. He spent many years in and out of many rehabs. His mother was going to NA to learn how to "deal with his death". She was sure he was going to die from his addiction. He is now 29 and the job he has working at the company my husband works at is his FIRST job. He is engaged to be married. His fiancee drinks socially but he does not drink or smoke. He's fine with her drinking. He is doing very well and is already getting promoted.

He got sober when his parents STOPPED. Stopped giving him money and stopped enabling him.

My husband told me we are doing the right thing. I wanted to share this with everyone here.


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And, from my own experience and reading here for years, it is basically when we stop all our resources to help them that they get desperate enough to quit.


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Thanks RN for that story. I needed to hear that reminder today. And I am doing ok.... The not hearing from him is helpful really. I dread that next phone call which i expect will come soon but hopefully he is working and figuring things out and is finding out he doesn't need to depend on us. I can hope for that anyways.


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So proud of all of us! We have learned so much through our pain. This is a great poem with so much truth and it's wonderful that your husband is in unity with you. HOPE= Hold On Pain Ends


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is my not helping him going to hurt him?
"sometimes you have to give up on people, not because you don't care but because they don't".
To me these two quotes above embody the crux of the matter, for them and for us. Does letting them go, in free fall bring them to the point where they use their own wings to fly or do they crash to the ground?

And I do not think there is a pat answer. I think it depends. We all know or have known people who lived in the gutter, whose lives were an unremitting fall. My own father was such a person.

But there are people who are left alone to their own devices, to sink or swim, and they swim. I am such a person.

Except to be honest, nobody gave up on me because I was self-destructing, but because it was time to live my life--and maybe there was a little bit of indifference to whether or not I was ready or able.

Our kids here on the forum are all of them different. Some of them are unable to do it alone, and will require the assistance of social or parental supports for the rest of their lives. My own son may well fall into this category. I have been slow to accept this.

But it is really hard to know the capacity of somebody. M has said that my son has changed hugely over the last year. But not enough. M also believes he can change more, but not until he wants to.

So I guess I adhere to both sides of the coin--that of TL and RN. That I have to be ready to do both. To let him go--and to bring him back.

So, I do not think we are in two camps, necessarily. I believe that some of us need to go back and forth between letting them fall, and giving them a place to land, to stabilize themselves and to re-launch.

It is messy and difficult, because we go on faith. In ourselves and in them. I do not know another way to do this.
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I loved this.

I'll go a step further. We can't give up or not give up on another person because their life is in their hands, not yours. Having hope is for you, not them. Regardless of how much you cheer them on and hope, it affects your well being...it does not affect whether they do better or not. Our attitude doesn't matter for them. Their attitude matters for them. And our attitude matters only for us.

I don't do anything on faith. I am a realist. Faith is hope. Of course I hope others will do better, but I don't have faith that they will..until they do. I look at what is...I radically accept what is. I'm not an
optimist or a pessimism. I am a hardcore realist. I look at a blue sky and don't think it will rain because it is blue. I lltalk to my often mouthy son and don't expect this to change. If it does then that will be a nice surprise. But it is what it is for now.

I believe that if we do things for them because of our fear then I feel that we that for us. Good for you for sending your son food money. You feel better that you did it. What he does with that money is no longer your concern. I believe it is good to help ourselves feel better...and be realistic that we may have wasted our money. If we know and accept that, Good!

I think disabled kids should be able to come home, if they are polite. I would not try to help a drug abuser who has a good IQ and an able body because I don't think it works to keep setting them up while they fail.But if another parent has the need to try again and has the means, I think it's A-ok to do it for that parents peace of mind.

I'm BECOMING About US AND DOING what makes us feel better. We really can't help somebody else do better, bit we can make itit easier for us to survive the path by doing what we feel we must do
And we are all in different stages of life too. We can change and have every right to do so.

Best wishes to all and to all of our adult kids.
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Copa I am with you! For me it is a balancing act between being there and being there too much. Right now my seems to want to work and somehow managed on his own the last couple of weeks and is paying his own rent.

For me giving up is really giving up the idea that anything I do will change his course.... I think I have just realized he can be the only one to change his direction or his course and so my job at this point is just to love him.