New to this site and grateful to find you

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by MaryLynne, Jul 28, 2008.

  1. MaryLynne

    MaryLynne New Member

    I am new to this site today. I have been dealing with my difficult child and her behaviour for 15 years...since she was 17. She started off running away, smoking pot, getting pregnant, keeping the child, getting married, fighting for a couple of years, then the verbal and emotional abuse of her child, a new relationship, continued abuse, another child, and now the final straw...crack cocaine and continued abuse of her kids.
    I have reported her to child welfare and they basically just give a slap on the wrist and do nothing.
    I have had 2 heart attacks since January of this year and am feeling so depressed. Went to the casino yesterday and blew my whole months having a breakdown.
    Now, I know that many people would say, save yourself, get rid of her out of your life....however, I choose not to do that. For some reason I believe that you cannot help if you are not in contact and you cannot show support and concern if you are not in their life. And, sad to say, the pain I feel now would be compounded 100 times if I didn't know what was happening.
    Of course then there are the grandchildren, I adore them. The oldest one is ok emotionally for the most part, he has found a way to cope. The 8 year old though is having so much trouble..although she has been diagnosed with ADHD, I think she also has Oppositional Defiance Disorder. She is a mean little girl, smart, very smart..reading at 3 years ahead of her age...academically bored...emtionally stunted. No social skills...talks to you in factual short bursts, never discusses feelings, like she has none...always in trouble at school...highly defiant to all.
    Omigod, I guess I just need to vent, and have not found the place. Friends and family of course are fed up with any discussion of them. So now only talk with 1 other person who has a similar situation with the drugs addiction.
    I know I cannot change anything...has to come from her..but how do I cope and not throw away the relationship? Is that a pipe dream? What about the kids? Do I have any options....Lord I hope someone out there has some advice, even if it doesn't work, it will be something to try and I have to remain optimistic.
    I am sending this out to you here and to the Universe and hope for an aid to my life. :whiteflag::919Mad: Oh ya, forgot to say, she screams and yells at me most days, the days when she doesn't she is a wonderful daughter, but cannot master it for more than a day or so.
  2. LittleDudesMom

    LittleDudesMom Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Welcome Marylynne! We do have some other grandparents here raising their difficult child's kids or seeking help for them. I must ask you first if they live with you? It kinda sounds like they do from all you have said. If they do live with you, you will have to resolve to living with drama. But it also gives you the ability to step in should your grandchildren need you.

    If they don't live with you, it would be easier to deal with your daughter because you wouldn't have to! You could call and talk to the grandchildren, you could go and pick them up once or twice a week and bring them to your house for lunch or dinner or just to spend time with them. You don't to have a lot of conflict with daughter, who just adds to your health issues and anxiety, to maintain a relationship with your grandchildren.

    Now, if you honestly, in your heart of hearts, feel those children are being abused in any way, you need to call the authorities again and again until something is done. If it is "just" a case of her being a bad mom, you have the opportunity to step in and offer the children some love and stability.

    Listen, I'm glad you are here. I hope you will find that we are all dealing with the side effects of our difficult children! You are not alone in your struggles.

  3. judi

    judi Active Member

    Hi and welcome. The desperation is clear even across the internet. I'm glad that you found us but sorry you had to if you get my drift. It is so hard to have adult kids who don't act like adults. You know what you need to do though - since you have already had two heart, your health is being affected tremendously. Is there anyway you can be there for the grandchildren but leave your daughter out of the picture? Can you pick up the kids and bring them to your house for visits?

    I stay out of my son's life per his request. However, I see my grandchildren very often and take them overnight as often as I can. That way, we are stabilizing forces in our grandchildren's lives with-o being sucked into the parent's drama.
  4. busywend

    busywend Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Welcome MaryLynne!

    You probably won't like this one, but I have to say it anyway.

    Sometimes, the things we do NOT do for our children are the best ways they end up learning the lessons. I get from what little you wrote, that you are enabling your daughter to treat you this way. As a guest on Oprah once said, and she repeats often, 'we teach people how to treat us'.

    So, my advice is to detach from the situations in your daughters life where you are enabling her. That does not mean to shut her out. Your grandkids obviously need you around. Nothing wrong with that!

  5. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Hi MaryLynne, welcome.
    Here's some iced tea and a lawn chair. Sit back and try to relax. Take care of yourself and your heart.
    Is your daughter living with-you?
    Would it be possible to take custody of the kids and have her move out? (I know, probably impossible, but it's a thought.)
    I agree, that you are enabling her. I know how painful it must be to think about not having her in your life. But crack cocaine is one of the hardest things to get off of. She cannot have it in your house or around your kids. Please call for professional help and report her.
    She will tell you she can kick it on her own but she can't. I know others who have been through this. It takes an average of 3-5 treatment programs to kick the addiction. That is, if they go at all.
    My heart breaks for you.

    As for your granddaughter, Is there any way you can have her tested? She sounds very bright and it's a shame to waste a beautiful mind. Has she been to any doctors yet?

    Can you take her to the dr with-o having your daughter there?
  6. Christy

    Christy New Member

    Welcome! I'm glad you found us. This is a great place to come for support and honest advice.

    I was also wondering if your grandchildren live with you? I always admire grandparents who step up to the plate and are willing to start over again with the all consuming task of raising children, especailly children who have the odds against them due to circumstances beyond their control. But as you mentioned in your post, your health is not the best and before you can help anyone else, you must take care of yourself! Continue to contact the authorities if you feel these children are abused or neglected, document you concerns. Don't give up.

    Look forward to hearing more from you,
  7. DazedandConfused

    DazedandConfused Active Member

    Welcome MaryLynn,

    Sounds like you are hanging on by the thinnest thread after years of trauma. I'm so sorry. Having an adult difficult child must be the epitome of helplessness (My Dad was a difficult child. My childhood was an exercise in survival). Then, it's further complicated when there is grandchildren involved.

    I would also recommend the Parents Emeritus forum. It's the CD forum specifically for parents with adult difficult children. Loads of great support from people who have been, and are currently in, a similiar boat as you.

    Keep reading and posting. It helps. A lot.
  8. luvmyottb

    luvmyottb Guest

    Welcome to our world. It is clear you are very depressed and need help. First of all, you cannot take the stress of your adult difficult child actions upon yourself. Your health must come first. Easier said than done. difficult child needs help and you may not be the person to give it to her. You must try to detach from her drama for your own mental and physical health.

    If your grandkids are being neglected or abused, please contact the authorities to get them out of her care. Sometimes doing the difficult things we don't want to do is the greatest way we can show our love and concern for our children.

    I am so sorry for your situation and hope you can take any advice from the board and make it work for you. You sound very sad and alone, but you may post here anytime and find others who can help or provide comfort to you. Please take care of yourself. Hugs to you.
  9. nvts

    nvts Active Member

    Welcome! I'm glad you found us, it's a really good group here, and as Dazed said, the Parent Emeritus forum will help you a ton with your daughters issues.

    Now, let's take a look at your granddaughter! The little lady sounds like she's in need of some help (aside from the obvious!). Does she have insurance/medicaid? We don't diagnose on the board (except with each others issues! hahaha!), but there were are few things that you said about your granddaughter that kind of struck me.

    Has she ever had a neuropsychologist examination done? Here's why: you mentioned her social skills are non-existant, she's got ADHD and you suspect ODD. Academically, she's way beyond her years. Sometimes this is the way aspergers syndrome (the only reason I mention this one specifically is because my 2 boys have that one) and several other developemental disabilities manifest themselves.

    As far as your daughter goes? I watch that tv show "Intervention" on tv and they ALWAYS say at the end, if you know someone in need of an intervention, contact us. You sound like you could use them for your daughter!

    And now "the scolding": Naughty you for spending your money in a casino! ;)

    We're here if you need us!

  10. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    Welcome aboard....sorry you need to join us. It is a terrific place where you can share your feelings without fear or embarrassment. As the oldest or near oldest CD family member and a Grandmother who has been raising
    grandsons for 21 years (yikes!) due to my daughter's difficult child behavior...I do understand alot about your issues.

    Please reach out as often as you care to. Some of us have days where we post many, many times and others are always there to read and listen.
    I'll look forward to getting to "know you". DDD
  11. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    I don't know the laws for Canada, but I think there are a couple of people here who might, so hopefully they will chime in with ideas for how to help your grandkids through the Canadian Child Welfare authorities.

    Aside from that, welcome to this place. It's unfortunate that you have to be here, but it's good you've found us! The people here are truly a gift!
  12. KTMom91

    KTMom91 Well-Known Member

    Welcome MaryLynne!
  13. MaryLynne

    MaryLynne New Member

    Hey all,
    Thanks for all your good wishes. No, they do not live with me now, but has only been 2 months since they left. I have taken a studio apartment in a seniors bldg. to save myself.

    I can visit the kids, but they are strongly influenced by their mother and when she is angry with me, they follow her lead.

    My current thoughts, just this day, are to let her go and let her be. My AA friend read me a quite from one of her recovery books which said, "My children and grandchildren have a Higher Power and it is not me!!"

    Wow, food for thought right. I am not physically able to care for the kids, although I would love to. difficult child is asking me to move into a larger space with her, stating we only had problems because of crowding and bent nerves due to that. I don't think so..
    Am for this day alone, just taking care of self and not letting it all get me down.
    Thanks again all.
  14. Calgon_Take_Me_Away

    Calgon_Take_Me_Away New Member

    Welcome MaryLynne :sunny: Here's a ray of sunshine that you'll get the information you need to continue treking!
  15. Big Bad Kitty

    Big Bad Kitty lolcat

    Welcome Mary Lynne.

    Your AA friend hit the nail on the head. It is So hard to let go when our adult kids are headed down the wrong path, but it really is the best thing to detach.

    Just remember that it does not mean you don't love them.
  16. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    MaryLynne, bravo to your AA friend. One day at a time, indeed.
    I'm so glad you moved into a Sr complex. Good idea.
  17. trinityroyal

    trinityroyal Well-Known Member

    MaryLynne, your AA friend is giving you excellent advice.
    Sometimes the best help we can give our difficult children is to not help them at all.

    You might find it helpful to look through the forum archives to find information on Detachment. It's a survival skill that many of us have had to learn and it really does help. If not in getting your difficult child to turn her life around, at least in making sure that you don't get swept away by the chaos.

    Welcome. You've found a soft place to land.
    I encourage you to check the Parent Emeritus forum as well.

  18. Estherfromjerusalem

    Estherfromjerusalem Well-Known Member

    Hello MaryLynne,

    I just wanted to welcome you. I look forward to getting to know you better.

    Love, Esther