Nothing much has changed

Discussion in 'Substance Abuse' started by Elsieshaye, Jun 23, 2012.

  1. Elsieshaye

    Elsieshaye Member

    Basic background is in my sig. Haven't really had much contact with my son apart from the occasional entitled, jerky email asking for random stuff, and the call from my cousin letting me know that my son wanted to go to my tiny piece of our family farm in Europe and grow pot. (facepalm) I've been wondering how he is, and getting occasional glimpses via Facebook. He has a very nice girlfriend, and gets along with her family. He's sort of working, and getting along with his dad somewhat better. I've been fairly content with not knowing too much more, or having more direct contact with him because it's usually so fraught with angst and drama.

    So, I dreamed last night that my son was involved in drug running, and woke up this morning crying because it was just so frustrating and sad.

    A couple of hours ago, I answered the door, and he was standing there. He's up for the weekend visiting some friends, and wanted to visit me. We talked for about half an hour, and nothing much has changed with him. He's still not on-planet, but he's a lot less hostile. He was actually friendly and pleasant. I initially offered him the couch tonight, but really couldn't stand the idea of him staying here, so I got him a hotel room for one night and handed him $40 for food. I know, I'm a sucker. I just couldn't -not- do it, Know what I mean?? And he didn't ask or even hint that he wanted it. After a few more minutes, I said "well, have a good weekend and let me know you got back safely" and that was that. He also has my phone number now (although he hasn't paid his phone bill in months, so we'll see how that goes). I can always block him if he starts up with the hostile and abusive texting/calling again.

    The frustrating and sad thing is that he's so aimless. He was telling me all about how he built his own hookah at Starbucks this morning out of a tea bottle, a can of red bull and some tubing. At one point, I was asking him if he'd thought about working construction and apprenticing in carpentry or plumbing (because he was talking about how he really wanted to work in the trades) and he was telling me how he really felt that a solid knowledge of chemistry and physics would help him in the trades, because plumbing is like a big circuit made of water, and chemistry would help him understand adhesives. He's also talking about how he's been "urban camping" (aka sleeping rough). I can't fix this for him, and honestly I don't even want to watch while he works things out. I did leave an opening for continued contact, but am going to have to set up some serious boundaries. The first of which is that unannounced visits aren't going to get a welcoming reaction from me in future.

    Ugh. I feel like such a dweeb.
  2. Signorina

    Signorina Guest

    Hey Elsie, {{{hugs}}}

    Right now I am in a very similar place as you. Maybe I am projecting-but I read your post and I could totally relate. My difficult child has been around a bit also as a "guest" -- and it feels so darn awkward. I want to bridge the distance somehow. Yet I know to bridge the distance means that we would fall back into old patterns and that would be worse than the current distance & awkwardness.

    My difficult child is turning into a stranger. A polite, distant relative. And it's terrifying and yet it's also a relief.

    All that aside- I am so glad that YOUR difficult child came to you. Did the right thing by visiting his mom while in town. And that you felt strong enough to draw some personal boundaries. You've really grown & I admire your strength.

  3. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    Sending hugs your way. Sounds like you did a perfect job of "keeping the balance" during the unexpected visit. My impression reading your post is that perhaps he has other MH issues. The "random" and rather disjoined conversation sounds alot like my 21 year old who is an Aspie with Schizoaffective personality disorder. I hope he has a brighter future than anticipated....and you, too. Caringly, DDD
  4. buddy

    buddy New Member

    Not a dweeb, what were you to do? I think you held together well, didn't want to set off a big issue, got through it and now sounds like you are thinking about how to handle similar issues in the future! We do the best we can in the moment, right? So glad he didn't get like he was with you at least. I was wondering how you were, glad you checked in. Any plans for the summer?
  5. toughlovin

    toughlovin Guest


    I think you did the right thing. Your son is only 18 and I think keep the door open is the right thing to do. Bounaries are good but so are open doors, or at least doors that are not slammed shut. When we kicked my son out I told my therapist I was going to wait until he contacted me. She encouraged me to text him here and there to keep that door open and I did that. As everyone knows we have been through the wringer with my son, with him getting help, screwing up and then looking for help again. I think we have ended up being very clear we are willing to help him when he wants help, but are not willing to enable drug use. I have come to believe that in a weird way knowing we are here for him is the reason that he has survived and not totally given up on himself.

    And now a couple of years later there is some shift in him towards a better relationship. We still have a long way to go but it finally feels we are on the right track. So yes leave that door open... figure out what you are willing to do and not do... no need at all to take any abuse from him, but being his mom and offering him food and shelter makes sense to me.

  6. Elsieshaye

    Elsieshaye Member

    Thank you all. Relatively speaking, it was a positive interaction. He even mentioned that things had gotten very strained between us, which is not a full-on "I screwed up", but is a step up from denying anything was wrong or blaming me for it.

    DDD, I agree that there's something possibly going on with him beyond the MJ, but I also don't see him often enough to be able to put a finger on what it is. Whatever's going on, he's the one who's going to have to ask for help and start talking to me about it. He's still on my health insurance, and will be for as long as I can keep him there, so there's an avenue for being able to get him help if he asks for it. But, yeah, Saturday was all about keeping the door open a bit. (Thanks, TL, for reminding me that's an ok thing to do.)

    Signorina, I absolutely get what you mean by your son turning into a stranger. Honestly, I think that's kind of what has to happen in the course of them becoming their own people and taking charge of their own lives. It's painful and awkward though.

    Buddy, I'm taking a class this summer. Eventually, I want to go back to grad school, and I need to get back in the swing of having homework and long days, lol. It's been fun. My boyfriend's son just left the military and moved back home until he can figure out what he wants to do next. (The son is a high achiever in his 30s, and this is the first time he hasn't had a path mapped out in advance, so it's a bit of an adjustment for him.) My boyfriend is not used to having anyone in the house, so he's all of a sudden coming up with lots of outings he wants to take me on, lol. I've definitely got a lot more going on in my life than focusing on my son, which is really helping it not be as overwhelming as it was 8 months ago.
  7. Nancy

    Nancy Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Good for you Elsie, sounds like you have some fun outings ahead. I feel like my difficult child is becoming more of a stranger to me as time goes on. I suppose that's good in that I am not as involved with her life and it's easier to detach. It's sad but all I can do is keep the door open so that we can at least be friendly.