Manipulation

Discussion in 'Substance Abuse' started by Helpless29, Sep 16, 2018 at 6:23 AM.

  1. Helpless29

    Helpless29 Member

    I called my son last weekend been missing him a lot.We talked and he was excited to tell me how he’s been doing better in school . We talked about how his grades were A’s & B’s now and how he was excited to join the b-ball team. I was feeling good , I told him I would take him to get his haircut.I don’t buy or give him anything unless he is doing good. So for his good grades I agreed to pay for his haircut. I gave him $20 dropped him off at haircut cut place watched him walk in and then left , he was suppose to call me when he was done. Well turns out he never got his cut,& spent it on whatever drug.He showed up at his grandparents at 9 & his dad picked him up. I feel hurt, used & mad at myself for trusting him. I want to see him today but if I do he’ll think it’s ok what he did to me & if I confront him for what he did , it will be a fight. Feeling confused & hurt.
     
    Last edited: Sep 16, 2018 at 6:33 AM
  2. B’smom

    B’smom Member

    My children are still going, so this is something I haven’t had to deal with yet. I don’t have any advice to offer. I just wanted you to know that you’re not alone. That I completely understand why you are feeling confused and hurt over this situation. sending you hugs and comfort on this journey.
     
  3. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Never give a drug addict money. Pay yourself in person. Walk in and pay the barber. They will use every dime on drugs. Every penny. It takes at least one sober year and being on track to trust addicts. He should be able to pay for his own haircut. One good week or even month means nothing to a drug addict. Reward them with love all the time, not money and material things. Love has no price. Money is dangerous to them.

    Dont get upset at yourself for loving your child. Just maybe learn better skills and boundaries. Therapy or Al Anon can help.

    I recommend reading the book Boundaries by Townstead and Cloud. It is Christian but I am spiritual, not Christian, and I found the non religious part of the book extremely common sense and helpful.

    Codependent No More by Melody Beatty is a great read.

    Love and light!
     
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    Last edited: Sep 16, 2018 at 7:15 AM
  4. Elsi

    Elsi Member

    Seconding what SWOT said. Also I’ve found I get better results when I skip the angry confrontation but hold firm to logical consequences. As in: “we both know what you did and it’s done and over now. But as a result, I will never again hand cash to you for any reason, until I am 100% sure you are sober. So don’t ask me. I’m not going to get angry, but you lost my trust and will have to earn it back over time.” Repeat as needed when he asks again for money. Ignore any resulting emotional outbursts. “Sorry you’re upset. This is what happens when you break someone’s trust.” And move on.

    Don’t be angry with yourself. Wanting to trust those with love is a normal human thing.
     
  5. Helpless29

    Helpless29 Member

    Thank you, I never thought of handling that way. Great advice
     
  6. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    I like Elsi's advice. The only thing I would change is I would not explain so detailed. Less is more. Give him as little as possible to argue over. Speak calm, no matter what.

    "No more cash for anything until you are sober for a year."

    "Huh?? Why?"

    "You are smart. You know." Dont elaborate

    When he screams you immediatally interupt."i have to go. Talk to you when you are calmer." Disconnect call. Dont answer him for at least a few days.

    If he still lives with you and gets violent call the police. You dont have to press charges. But you must be safe.

    Too many words backfired on me.
     
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    Last edited: Sep 16, 2018 at 7:37 AM
  7. B’smom

    B’smom Member


    Sorry that was supposed to say my children are still young*
    I’m not sure how to edit it
     
  8. Helpless29

    Helpless29 Member

    Thank you, I have given his dad full custody, if I don’t reach out to him , he will not call me.He did this last weekend & I’m not sure when is the right time to reach out to him, I mean is today to soon ? Do I wait? Or is there any right answer.
     
  9. Elsi

    Elsi Member

    What do you want, if you’re honest with yourself? Do you really want to talk to him or just feel like you should? I would give yourself permission to let go of shoulds here, especially if the conversation isn’t likely to have a positive outcome. You don’t have to call to confront him on this. It can be as simple as waiting until next time he asks for money. ‘Yeah, remember last time? I don’t think so.” Or maybe if you feel like you have to reach out do it by text. I don’t think there is one answer.
     
  10. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    I think you can do it any way you feel comfortable. Does Dad stop him from calling? Are you friendly with Dad?
     
  11. Helpless29

    Helpless29 Member

    Yes we get along,he just dosent call me:/ & we don’t force it on him to call him
     
    Last edited: Sep 16, 2018 at 8:30 AM
  12. Elsi

    Elsi Member

    Two of mine typically only call when they want something. And often don’t answer or respond to my texts or calls, so I stop trying until they decide they want to talk. Sometimes I feel guilty that I’m not in closer contact with them. And sometimes I allow myself to enjoy the drama-free silence. I send an occasional text saying hey, thinking of you, love you, hope you’re well. and leave it intheir court.

    Of course, mine are full adults (28 and almost 33). Not sure how old your son is but sounds like still minor. It sounds like you want to keep the connection. Depending on the level of conflict and drama between you, it might be easier to just send texts without expectation of reply, or even letters and little gifts by mail. Let him know you’re thinking of him and open, without trying to force a conversation he’s not ready for.

    My daughter and I have gone through periods of communicating almost entirely through text via funny cat memes and xkcd cartoons.
     
  13. Helpless29

    Helpless29 Member

    He’s 15 teen & yes it’s me feeling guilty,I often find myself feeling jealous of seeing other moms having such a close relationship with there sons & wonder why not us, but I’m slowly learning to accept this is the way it is. Thank you for your advice
     
  14. Elsi

    Elsi Member

    Helpless he’s young - your relationship will evolve over time and go through seasons. 15 is natural time for sons to be pulling away from their mothers anyway, even without addiction issues. When N was that age, I called him secret agent man because he wouldn’t tell me anything about his life. C was the cave man because he only communicated in grunts. :rolleyes:

    I’m very close with N now, although long distance. I just got off our weekly video call with him and my grandsons. My relationship with C is evolving and In large part contingent on his current addiction and mental health issues. I just try to keep the communication lines open for when they’re ready, and release any expectations. Send a brief text. Or just an emoji. Or a cartoon you think he’ll like. A surprise package with his favorite candy or another inexpensive (and non street sellable) gift. Don’t expect a response. Be unexpectedly happy if you get one. Let it evolve. At his age, he’s got plenty of time to get back on the right path. And he’ll remember these gestures later, even if he doesn’t respond now.

    But don’t feel guilty if you don’t actually talk. Or if you can’t even handle talking. That’s on him right now.
     
  15. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    I wasnt even close to my girl when she used. Too many secrets. Once she quit we got close.
     
  16. RN0441

    RN0441 100% better than I was but not at 100% yet

    I was super close to our youngest when he was, well, young. When he turned 15 and started his wrath, we were not close. At all. It seems like it happened overnight. I didn't really like him anymore.

    He wanted to be close as he got older though, in between his drug use and sober times.

    He calls me almost every day now and we talk for a half hour. Some days he cannot. He also messages me on Hangout a lot. He tells me to have a good day and that he loves me. Wow. He wants to be in MY life now. BAD. He has met a lot of people that have used drugs and have no family. Or there family doesn't want anything to do with them. They are sober but they are truly alone.

    Then my other son is 31. He is engaged. He loves me but he is private but I still feel we're pretty close - for him. He never gave me any problems. Always a great son.

    What I'm saying is don't write the end of the story. I agree with Elsi and reach out in little ways and let him know you love him. Maybe send him a card every so often. No money. Or take him to lunch or dinner. Not always just to let him know you are there. I think you should be thankful he has a father that will take him. He probably needs his dad more than you at this time in his life. Who's to say.
     
  17. Smithmom

    Smithmom New Member

    Just a thought... Can Dad say no to him? If you trust Dad with custody... Can you tell son that you gave Dad the reward money? Then let Dad handle how its spent? I ask because if Dad is taking control maybe avoid manipulation by letting Dad be in charge of everything? So give Dad the cash and walk away from it. Both son and Dad know who has the cash and what its for. This avoids son's ability to get haircut money from two people. To play you and Dad against each other. To avoid Dad getting angry with you for making mistake. Maybe its a win win for both you and Dad?
     
  18. Nature

    Nature Active Member

    Hi,
    Such great advice you're received. I really can't add to what was suggested other than nod my head in agreement to what was said.