Reaching out just in case...

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by Echolette, Mar 15, 2017.

  1. Echolette

    Echolette Well-Known Member

    My son, now 23, is getting out of jail tomorrow, after being there the better part of two years. He has had multiple discharges to mental health facilities, and he has jumped on all of them, often after as little as 36 hours. He always gets arrested again soon after. This has been going on for two years. He always says the right stuff, very earnestly, and again, from jail, he is saying the right stuff...but he always does that. I don't actually think he has it in him to stick it out. I love him, I feel sorry for him, I hope that maybe his brain has matured and he is over the hump right now, he is in a good program...but I'm pretty sure that I will have to wade through the yawning abyss again in a week or so...

    So, in preparation for that, I'm reaching out to the forum as part of my tool box, so I can deal with what comes.

    So very very stabilizing to know that you are all out there for the good times and the bad.

    Pray for him, or cross your fingers, or hold him in the light..whatever strength you have to offer. For me too.

    Echolette
     
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  2. Lil

    Lil Well-Known Member

    I'm sorry Echo. What a pity that would should be a positive thing, him getting out, is actually a source of stress and dread for you. It's hard, the waiting to see if this time it's different. You know we're all here for you.
     
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  3. Tanya M

    Tanya M Living with an attitude of gratitude Staff Member

    Echo,

    I'm sending you positive energy and my prayers, also for your son.

    I can so relate to how you feel. I have gone through this with my son too many times. My son was arrested in late Nov. for assault with a deadly weapon (knife). I have honestly lost count of how many times he has been in jail. He is wanting to represent himself. He could be looking at 16 years. The letters I've received from him are just as you describe, saying all the right things.
    I so want to believe him but history has taught me to be very careful.

    Hang in there Echo and let us know how things go.

    :group-hug:
     
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  4. RN0441

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

    Echo

    Sending you prayers for strength as you embark on this situation and for your son that he makes good decisions.
     
  5. SeekingStrength

    SeekingStrength Well-Known Member

    Hey there Echo,

    You and your son will definitely be in my thought and prayers, starting right now.

    Someone of this forum once pointed out to me that I will know my Difficult Child has truly changed by his actions. You will know within a few months if your son has taken some of these life lessons to heart.

    Does the program carry on once he is released? That can be an abyss in itself - when they are released with no re-entry program provided. If there is any re-entry help available, and your son is willing to work the program, that might make a huge difference.

    Stay close with us. I visit here several times a week, mostly to gain strength. I feel selfish sometimes, because I offer so much less than I gain.

    That old punch in the gut feeling never goes away, no matter how much experience we have with our difficult offspring. You will get through this.
    Remember: Do something fun for you these days. Each and every day. You will be able to roll with whatever comes your way and be supportive of your son, while not enabling. I have no doubt of that.

    My 35yo is heading to trial in May and may very well be incarcerated again. He has maintained his innocence since first arrested. (What a surprise.) And you know what, when we learned it was going to trial, husband and both felt that punch in the gut. Even now. Even, knowing what we know. Even, all we have been through.



    Hugs,
    SS
     
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  6. Catmom

    Catmom Member

    Hi Echo-
    Count me in to pray for you and your son. I pray for my son every night and have accepted that even though I want my son fixed now, it may not be God's timing. Patience is not my strong suit when I want everything to get better now and well...it's been 6 years and still going on...my son's court date is coming up soon in April. Not sure what to expect. One day at a time for everyone on this site!
     
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  7. Irish strong

    Irish strong New Member

    Praying for you:)
     
  8. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Light and love and prayers for you and your son.
     
  9. Echolette

    Echolette Well-Known Member

    Seeking (nice to see you!)

    that has been both the blessing and the bane. He had a great PD who has gotten him into multiple transition programs, stepping from inpatient treatment with frequent court followups, to transitional housing with case workers and job support..2 years worth. It is a perfect plan for him and so many others, accessible only by first going to jail. I think that is part of what makes this hard for me..I can see that this is his best possible option, but he throws it away with both hands. I do not know at all if it is his intention, as he leaves jail today, to stay with the program and then it turns out he just doesn't have the persistence in him to do something hard with delayed gratification, or if right now during sheriff's transfer he is planning to walk away tonight and go find his friends in the drug district of town. I don't know. I only know what he says, and what he says has not been what he has done (he has left these facilities the past four or five times).

    One ray of light...I was talking with him many weeks ago, and sort of hesitantly offered an excuse for him.."ya know, honey, I think part of the problem last time is that you were transferred on a Friday, no activities or structure or even a doctor till MOnday, I'm sure that was frustrating..". He hesitated. I could feel his temptation to take the little gift. Then he said "Mom, the problem is me. I have to commit and get it done. There is no other problem."
    In that brief short moment I saw the heart and soul and humor of my lovely son. Just a glimpse. Those moments are wonderful gifts, kind of like the moments when we remember their chubby huggy selves. They wrench our hearts, but they are gifts.

    Thank you all for replying. I feel bolstered for the next few days. I'm sure I will be back!

    Echo
     
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  10. bluebell

    bluebell Active Member

    I am praying for you, Echo. Please update us on his choices. My son is 20, but he has been in trouble for over 7 years now, but is just now starting to say the right things - he was very violent and angry in the past and blamed everything on us. I thought that was all it would take, but no, he goes and keeps making the same bad choices. This has been very hard on me as I was pinning all hopes on the 'epiphany'.
    I read in your signature where you have SADD and are probably transitioning right about now? Take care of yourself and find joy in something everything day, great advice from Seeking Strength!
     
  11. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I just got here ECHO and read your post. My thoughts, wishes, prayers and love go with you and your son.......I know the sea saw ride our Difficult children provide for us.......always the opportunity to maintain our own balance as they swing wildly thru the air.......my prayer for you is to maintain that balance, that point of neutrality, the 'Middle Way'.......I'm right there with you.......as always......
     
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2017
  12. pasajes4

    pasajes4 Well-Known Member

    This is a tough place to be......caught between hope and the reality that things could just repeat themselves. A wise warrior parent said, " It is their story to write, and the story is not finished yet."
     
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  13. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    This is so beautiful Echo. It says it all.

    I am so hopeful for him and for you. But the thing I always need to (and mostly fail) to remember is that it is all of it, not done on our timetable or even theirs. I really think there is the divine in this.

    The important thing I think is his spirit (and yours) wondrous and beautiful. I just love your son (and you, too.)

    This is not about one concrete step, or 2 or 6. Done today or tomorrow. It is about something way beyond. Of course we need them to DO SOMETHING. *And NOT THAT THING. But this will come.

    I am seeing this both for my own son, and for myself too.

    I once was lost but now I'm saved (are these the words). Amazing Grace. It's about spirit. Your son is amazingly kind. He has a gift.
     
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  14. SeekingStrength

    SeekingStrength Well-Known Member

    like Copa posted, this says a lot. There is hope. Definitely. Wish my THIRTY FIVE YO would say something along those lines. :(

    Your son is yet young. I feel he will get it - if not this time, soon. Perhaps too soon to celebrate, but room for much hope.
     
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  15. Echolette

    Echolette Well-Known Member

    Bluebell, I do have SADD, as does my sister and my daughter. My mother was one of the first people enrolled in the light box trials back in the 70's. The lights do help, as do all the other known things...outdoors, exercise, awareness, etc. It is hard though, and you are right, every year I am surprised at how very very bad March is. I always have the idea it is nearly over and yet...

    Thank you, RE, for reminding me of the Middle Way. I can keep my balance there. Having you with me has been a significant piece of this journey.

    So very very true. I had to pause for a moment and try to remember who wrote that...but it is possible that several of us have written that or something like it. It is indeed his story, not mine. I'll try to hold that clear in the coming days.

    my family sings this before we sit down for Thanksgiving each year. I think there are slight variations, but we sing "I once was lost, but now I'm found...was blind, but now I see." It always brings tears to my eyes.

    Right now I am about avoiding regret. There has been an epidemic of heroin overdose deaths in my fair city, as in so many places in the US. Since his MO is to walk from these (unlocked) placements, then fall through the circles of hell, to end up once again buying heroin on the most post-apocalyptic streets of our town, I am reasonably afraid that he could die. With that in mind, I don't want him to feel that I abandoned him in the last days of his life. This is for me, not for him. So I popped on over to his treatment center with a bag of toiletries..I actually saw him in the hallway in his hospital johnnie. I thought I would also go buy him some clothes, but I find that each time I think of the work of that, and the fact that the last 5 times he has left his treatment center before I even had a chance to get there with clothes, I feel bile rise in my throat...so...focusing on "helping" vs "enabling", the fact that that makes me feel agitated must mean it is enabling. So I will not do that. But here the FOG kicks in and I think...he said that he hates having nothing at these places. What if my bringing him clothes is the thing that makes him stay? I will blame myself if I don't do it and he leaves.

    But RIGHT THERE I can see it makes no sense. My bringing clothes cannot make or break his commitment. It is not on me. It is, as he rightly says, on him.

    Those are my thoughts for the day. They may have changed by tonight.

    Echo.
     
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  16. Lil

    Lil Well-Known Member

    I read somewhere - probably from someone here - that if you resent the help you are giving, it isn't help, it's enabling.

    If it's a gift out of the goodness of your heart, it's a gift. If it's something you are giving grudgingly or with trepidation, then it's not. Do what feels right to YOU. If you feel like a t-shirt and some sweat pants would be good for him and make him more comfortable there, then fine, give. If you don't. Then don't. All you can do is what seems right at the time.

    Out of curiosity though, how has he left before with no clothes?
     
  17. Echolette

    Echolette Well-Known Member

    Lil,

    I don't really know! I asked the staff what happens to people who don't have anyone to bring them clothes..they said they have some donations. Maybe he gets those. Maybe he brings some clothes from jail? I don't know. He has been on the street for 5 years, so he is pretty resourceful. He usually has clothes on! and he says, by the way, there is no reason for anyone to ever be hungry on the street, there are food kitchens and pantries 3 meals a day 7 days a week somewhere, you just have to put the effort in.
     
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  18. Albatross

    Albatross Well-Known Member

    Echo, I just logged on and saw your post and wanted to say I am thinking of you and your son tonight, and sending fervent wishes for centeredness (is there such a word?) for both of you.

    This sounds just like me. And if you are thinking like me, you will also blame yourself if you DO it and he leaves...you will think, "Maybe if I hadn't made it so easy for him to leave, if he had to ask for donated clothes, he would have stayed..."

    His acknowledging responsibility that way is very encouraging. I think once that nut is cracked, all kinds of good things can start to happen. I so hope he makes some good choices this time around, Echo.
     
  19. Carri

    Carri Active Member

    What a bunch of great writings.

    It's scary to think "here we go again" and not be afraid of the outcome. Especially after prior disappointments. I think it's like PTSD. We've learned to be guarded to protect ourselves. Think how scary it must be for our difficult kids too. They must feel very much the same. I'll pray for both of you that you can handle it one day at a time and there's a good outcome. Hugs, carri
     
  20. Irish strong

    Irish strong New Member

    I just discovered after coming home from work, my son had a few new items. Of course he does not have a job as he is disabled by his anxiety and bipolar diagnosis. I leave small amounts of money for snacks etc. but certainly not enough for these items. I know he is not out stealing as he barely leaves the house and is scared to go back to jail. I have already hidden most credit cards at my office. Of course he heard me ordering food with a card and boy oh boy he locked that info down fast! Just checked my transactions...guess what? Yep. Had to close that card too. It breaks my heart as I have spent thousands of dollars to try to help him both with therapy, doctors and legal representation. Feel duped and hurt again.