Nervous and Sad


Well-Known Member
I think the last time I posted Difficult Child had just been arrested and was begging me for bail money. I said no, he was in jail for a week and then released. He went back to living on the streets shortly before moving in with a friend and the friend's girlfriend. He's been there about a month now, maybe 6 weeks but I believe that situation has now come to an end. During that time he was staying there he wasn't in touch much. I'd only hear from him maybe once a week if that. However, the last few days he's been slowly increasing contact and texting me. Yesterday he said he had a question to ask me when I had time. I asked him what he wanted and he asked if I could buy him a bus ticket to Florida. I said, no, I don't have the money. He then texted me back later to say his friend bought the ticket and he was leaving today but could I please buy him a bicycle. Again, I said no, I don't have the money. Today came and went and he hasn't left. He just called to say he and his friend are taking the bus from the town he's living in (only 2 towns over) to our town because he's going to see his uncle before he leaves for Florida tomorrow. He then commented that he'd like to see me before he goes to Florida because "it's been at least 6 months" and "we don't make an effort to see him very often and that makes him sad." I was honest and told him that I refuse to see him like that and that's why I haven't made an effort to see him since February. I said it's beyond difficult for me to see you as a homeless person and I just can't do it anymore. I said it doesn't mean I don't love you, but that in fact it means I love you so much that seeing you in that lifestyle crushes my heart. He was actually calm when I said that and said he understands but that he's been doing much better lately and he'd really like to see me to say goodbye before he goes. I think part of that is true but I could tell he was also trying to tug at my heartstrings and manipulate me into letting him come here tonight so I simply ended the conversation at that point and said enjoy your visit with your uncle and for him to call me in the morning. If he's in the area I will stop to say goodbye to my son and bring him some sandwiches for his trip but under no circumstances is he to come to or near this house. I said it to him verbally and also text him the same thing after we hung up because I want it to be extra clear that he can not just show up here.

I'm so unnerved right now. It's been a long time since I've felt like this. I feel threatened. I moved my car into the driveway and locked all the doors and windows. I haven't had to do that in a long time. I know some of you might remember a few years back when that was a CONSTANT fear of mine. Difficult Child showing up at my house. I don't think I slept in my bed for 6 months at one point because I was always on watch at night and would often fall asleep on the couch and keep guard there. I'm also very sad right now because I would like to see my son before he leaves the state. He's my son. I love him so much. It feels like someone has punched me in the gut. It's one of those nights where I will need to lock myself in the bathroom and sob and cry my eyes out because the sadness of the situation is physically hurting me. The thought of him just showing up here freaks me out but the thought of not seeing my son before he moves to another state devastates me. I'm all over the place tonight and I know sleep will not come easy. I'll be up in fear all night that he will be out there lurking around or trying to break in to the house or the cars or the shed where my husband keeps his motorcycle and expensive lawn equipment. I'll also be kept awake out of guilt for not allowing my child to sleep under my roof for one night before he leaves to start his new life in a new state where he knows no one. It's truly a no win situation. I think I'm going to try to calm down, perhaps do some rock painting that I've been working on, read a book , have a cup of tea, and try to breathe. Try to let it all wash over me as COM has often said.

Sorry for the rambling but I'm so tired tonight and needed to get this off my chest. Thanks for always being here for me when I need you all the most.


Active Member
It's so hard, isn't it? Doing the right thing, protecting ourselves, loving them but not trusting them...Your story resonates with me. Reading your post reassured me that I'm doing the right thing with my son too even though it feels so detached, so unnatural. Thanks for sharing. Who knows, he may not even go to see his Uncle or even to Florida? Waiting and wondering can be exhausting. Distracting yourself with a book, etc is a great idea. Hugs-Carri


Well-Known Member
Hugs JFK,

We understand.

If you want to see your son, I think you should. And, taking sandwiches & snacks is a very loving thing to do.

It does smack of manipulation (I know only from experience), but there is nothing wrong with meeting him in a public place and giving him food for the trip and telling him you love him. No money, no gifts, just simply letting him know you love him. Period. Nothing more....except I think the food gifts are a sweet gesture.

My son? He would throw the food on the ground because he really wanted money.

But, I do not think most Difficult Offspring go that far.

Please stay with us. I hope, hope, hope you get a good night's sleep and can hand this over to a Higher Power and trust it will all work out in the end. Not necessarily on our time schedule.

And, then, do something fun and/or special tomorrow, even if it just a trip to a coffee shop or a walk through a park. Start planning it now.

You are in my thoughts tonight.


Tanya M

Living with an attitude of gratitude
Staff member
Hugs to you JKF. Such a mix of emotions you are feeling. If he really wants to see you before he goes then he should be agreeable to meet in a neutral place.
I know that fear all to well. For so long when I would get up in the morning and would draw the drapes back on our back patio door I was always afraid my son would be standing there. It's terrible to feel that way.
I'm glad you posted, it is good to vent and get if off your chest.
I hope you will be able to see him before he leaves. I hope you will be able to feel some calm. I hope you are able to get a restful nights sleep.
Let us know how it goes.


Well-Known Member
The thought of him just showing up here freaks me out but the thought of not seeing my son before he moves to another state devastates me.
You are very strong and clear, JKF.

You know you want to see your son, but only if he respects your boundaries. You have been traumatized. Your son has traumatized you. It is very hard to stay in the here and now when these feelings are triggered. Yet, you are doing so.
I'll be up in fear all night that he will be out there lurking around or trying to break in to the house or the cars or the shed where my husband keeps his motorcycle and expensive lawn equipment.
It is too late tonight, but are there steps that you can take that will allow you to feel safe in future nights? An alarm system? Motion Lights? A dog?
I'll also be kept awake out of guilt for not allowing my child to sleep under my roof for one night before he leaves to start his new life in a new state where he knows no one.
There is no need for guilt. You know that. Your son created the situation, not you.
It's truly a no win situation.
I think there is a win. You are clear. Sandwiches in a neutral place where you feel safe, is a win.

You told him the truth. With integrity and clarity. I love you too much to have it be easy to see you like this. But you are overcoming your own pain and reaching out to me. To me, that is a way.
I think I'm going to try to calm down, perhaps do some rock painting that I've been working on, read a book , have a cup of tea, and try to breathe.
This is a win, too. All of this.


one day at a time
JKF we are with you this morning as well. As RE says circling the wagons, putting our protective care and concern and understanding over you.

I hope you were able to get to a calmer place last night and this morning.

I am glad you will see him today. Lay eyes on him and hand him those sandwiches and hug him hard and look into his eyes. I am glad you will be able to do that.

They teach us how to respond to them over time JKF. He has taught you and you responded as you needed to. It is so sad and so very very hard when it is your precious son.

He is going to Florida for the winter. That sounds like a good thing for him and a decision he is making. Perhaps it is true that he is better. I so hope so.

And JKF I believe if and when they do get better it is usually when they are away from us that it begins. That thought and belief gave me comfort when I did not see Difficult Child for a long long time. I saw that a daily or weekly relationship was not good for him or me during that time. I had to let go just like you have.

My heart is hurting for you right now because I well remember all you have been through. I praying that seeing him today will be good for your heart, though hard, and after that, tomorrow and in the coming days, you will fell a new relief and can go forward even more.

We are here for you. We care so much. See those wagons? Feel them? They are us.


New Member
I hope you got some rest last night. I wish I could hug you!

I think your plan to see him in a neutral location is perfect! And the sammies for the trip are sweet and loving.

I will hold you in my thoughts today and, along with everyone else here, send you strength. Big hugs!


Active Member
Oh, I SO relate to your post and your feelings!

I just want to say that I'm sending love and support to you. This way of parenting is unreal-the pain, the fear, the anxiety and impotence just grind us down.

I've been posting so much about my "impending doom" feelings, that I am all cried out and drained, but wanted to let you know that there's yet one more here who understands and wants peace of mind for you and serenity and safety for us all. Hugs...


Well-Known Member
Staff member
I remember those nights a couple of years ago JKF, I was fearful for you then.

I am sorry. Most of us know the devastating heartbreak to be in the place you find yourself. It's a terrible place for a mother to be. My heart goes out to you.....I've been there too.

You've done a stellar job of boundaries for all this time. I admire your strength and resolve. And, it is a very difficult journey we are all on.

Today is the day to be very, very kind to yourself. Shift the focus off of your son and place it on you, your other son and your family.

Sending you big hugs and prayers for all of you......


Well-Known Member
Thank you for your comments and support. I didn't get to see Difficult Child to say goodbye before he left on Wed. He left before I had a chance to meet him. He called me continuously throughout his trip though and has been calling me NONSTOP since he got there.

So, much in the fashion of difficult children, he impulsively went to Florida without any money and without a plan. Yup. Just thought he'd arrive there and everything would be magically different. He went to see the girl he ran away with to PA 3 years ago when this whole homeless thing began. But guess what? She's no where to be found. Won't answer his calls. Isn't on Facebook. Basically ditched him IF she even knew he was coming in the first place. I wouldn't doubt that he just decided to go "surprise" her without her knowing he was coming but who knows. It very well could have been planned and she just ditched him.

For 2 days now he's been calling me nonstop. He has no food. No money. No where to stay. It's hot. He's starving. He's dying. If only he had a BICYCLE everything would be ok. Really?? Because a f'ing bicycle is going to solve all of your problems. Ugh! I can't!! He begged me to get him a room yesterday but I can't get him a hotel room even if I wanted to because 1) I'd have to put it on my CC and I don't trust him and 2) Even if I was an idiot and got him a room he can't check in without a credit card of his own. So that's not an option. I gave him numbers to the local shelters but he'd rather sit in front of the Walmart than go to a shelter. Every suggestion I make - Walk to the beach and swim, check out town, call a shelter, etc. is met with a reason why that's a stupid idea and he CAN'T do any of those things. I got him a $25 e gift card to Burger King because it's food and I'm always willing to feed my child, Difficult Child or not, however it's apparently useless because the BK is ONE MILE away from the Walmart and that's too far of a walk in that kind of heat. He had the nerve to say "If only you got me a Subway card everything would be fine because there's a Subway here at the Walmart." Really??!! Are you f'ing kidding me?

In the beginning I was nice and listened to his frustrations when he called because I do feel bad that he put himself in such a bad situation but now he's in panic mode and is starting to get cranky during the calls. I was finally very firm with him the last time he called because I'm fed up. I said "This was your idea and you need to figure out what to do. I've given you numbers to shelters, I've paid for food, and yet you're still complaining. Call a shelter, go get something to eat and stop with the BS. You're the one who went 1200 miles away to see a girl who has shown her true colors to you many times in the past. So stop whining and do something about your situation because there's nothing anyone else can do and you can't live at the Walmart."

He's upset and angry and near tears but what can I do? I told him from the beginning that this was a bad idea. He had it set in his mind that he wanted to go and there's no stopping him once he decides to do something. He's determined to go out of his way to "F" up his life, yet going to apply for SSI (he would have it by now if only he'd gone to his appointments) is "too much trouble because it takes a lot of time and people suck".

Anyway, I'm going to have a glass of wine and relax with my husband. I just needed to vent here real quick because you guys are the only ones who truly understand!


Well-Known Member
JKF, I am so sorry you are in this situation. Needless to say, you do not deserve it. Not one bit.

Have you thought about insulating yourself a bit from his calls? Like what COM did, only accept calls once a week or so between a specified window of time.

You cannot be made responsible for his folly, on top of the regular irresponsible M.O. of his lifestyle. It is just not fair, good for you, or ultimately good for him for you to be targeted for what he brought upon himself. And can himself solve and will solve.

My son has talked about dumb things like this. There was Montana and then Vermont. To wait for the end of the world. And the forest in Santa Cruz. To join the Utopian community there. But, at least not yet, has he acted on these hare-brained ideas.

I feel confident that your son will get himself out of this mess. Sooner rather than later. At least it is not cold there. He was seeking an adventure. He got one.

While he tries to torture you long-distance, I bet he is having some fun. He will be OK. Just take care of yourself.
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one day at a time
Oh JKF. I hate those calls! I remember them well, and I also can conjure up the sick-to-my-stomach...then angry...feelings I would have listening to all of that stuff.

You just want to scream: THIS WAS YOUR IDEA, NOT MINE. I CAN"T FIX IT!!!

Ugh. I so understand the sending $ for food. I did that too. I would do that again. I don't want anybody to be hungry.

The fact is, Florida is warm (Hot to him, right?), there are a lot of homeless people there due to the weather and a lot of services. If he chooses not to use them, well, okay. He has options. He has always had options. He just doesn't want to use them. As you so very well know.

I hope you can tell yourself, I did something, I sent him food money, that is it for today, enjoy that wine and let it go as much as you possibly can.

He has to do this in order to get to the next place in his life, whatever that looks like.

Warm hugs to you my friend. We're here with you.


Well-Known Member

Sending the BK gift card was quite generous! and if he gets hungry enough, he will walk that mile. Does not surprise me at all that he voiced a preference for another restaurant. My difficult child would so do that.


My difficult child did something very similar this week. Not as many miles, but he came to our town where he has no friends. He hoped somebody (although he has alienated every friend he had here because he has used them time and time again) would give him money (and my mom just might do that, though she says she will not). Get this. He is desperate for bus fare back to the town from whence he came two days ago. husband and I cannot wrap our heads around his thinking. Thank goodness! If we understood it...well, that might be unsettling.

These difficult child's do that! They just take off, with no plan, and think somebody will step up and give them $$, even if they have used and re-used their past connections. Though, to be honest, I have sometimes wished our difficult child would just take off to Denver or San Francisco or someplace very liberal and make a fresh start. I do not see that happening because our difficult child does not see a shelter as an option at this point. He "deserves" better.

I so understand and I am so sorry. You sent a $25 gift card, which in my opinion, again, is a major sign of love without enabling.

It is never enough for Difficult Child's, is it?

Hope you are relaxing and enjoying this short life we are given. We are given a limited # of days and it is up to us to make the most of those.

husband and I have hung a flannel sheet over the bamboo blinds the last two nights. Just in case he decides to surprise us.

What a way to live.

We know what we know and we do what we can do that makes sense.

Stay close and thinking about you tonight,