Son is hopeless

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by blackgnat, May 13, 2012.

  1. blackgnat

    blackgnat Active Member

    Have posted before about my difficult child son. The stories are all so similar and he's a carbon copy.

    I managed to save myself, found an apartment on my own before the eviction (which will be June 24th ish) and feeling survivor's guilt about that. My younger son, the straight arrow, and difficult child are living together until the eviction. Straight arrow has a place lined up and difficult child is supposed to be going to a residential rehab. He's court ordered to do that and instead of looking for places consistently, he's drinking (despite on his las rehab, being diagnosed with having AMMONIA on his brain) and drugging and looking on the internet at serial killers. Says he really doesn't care about is life and would like to emulate Ted Bundy, killing without remorse and cheating the system. The delusions just send me into orbit.

    He does nothing all day and is clearly mentally ill and self-medicating. I come home a couple of times a week and it just does my head in. I am trying to detach because I can't spend more than a minute in his company. He is lost without hope of normality. He has no insurance and says he can't call the county health dept because he has anxiety. Yet goes on craigslist and solicits men for sex (he's gay/bisexual) and drugs and alcohol. He is such a mess and has SO many opportunities to turn it around that I feel I just have to give up on him. That feels so wrong, yet there are NO lengths to which he will not go to steal, scam, lie etc. He will call me at all hours for money and xanax (which I occasionally take for anxiety). A complete sociopath.

    Not really sure what I'm asking here. Just I guess -is it okay to leave him to his own devices? I have tried EVERYTHING I can, for years and years. He's been in jail multiple times, rehab multiple times, put me in the ICU with a bleeding brain, been verbally abusive multiple times. It seems like every time he gets the chance to get on a different path, he messes it up. Just told me he is only living for me and as soon as I die, he will kill himself. He is 23.

    He says he will live on the streets as a prostitute if that what it takes to stay alive. What am I supposed to think of all this? Is it drama? Attention getting? Is it okay for me to want to get away and start building my own life, when nothing here changes? I have gone beyond the pail of enabling, but I still feel like there's GOT to be something I can do to save him. Is this enmeshment in its purest form? Is he a sadist, saying these tings to hurt me and elicit a response?

    I realise you all don't know him so can't answer these questions specifically, but is this typical of most difficult children?

    Would love some guidance and direction, yet again. Thanks in advance and HAPPY MOTHERS DAY TO ALL! Oh, the irony!
  2. vligrl

    vligrl New Member

    Oh my dear friend, how I wish I could help you with this terrible and tragic situation. I cannot imagine the pain you must be in and short of admitting your son in a psch ward, I don't know what else you can do besides make sure you are safe and get any counseling you have availabe. There is nothing more you can do in this situation from what I can see. I have spent the day full of anger at my son for making poor choices and not taking the time to get or make a card for me on my birthday two days ago or for Mother's Day, then I dropped the anger, felt my real feelings and couldn't stop crying. Then I read your post and it made my problems seem so small. Just hope you know your son's problems are not your fault as he seems to have real mental and psychological problems. Has he ever been admitted for evaluation especially for his thoughts of killing people? That is so scary. Please keep safe, try and live your life for you and your other child.
  3. Liahona

    Liahona Guest

    I don't normally post on this forum so I don't have any good advice. You do have my sympathy though. I was wondering if you have told the police or your son's therapist (if he has one) or anyone who could admit him without his consent about his fascination with serial killers? Preferably in writing in case the first person who sees it doesn't understand or take you seriously. I'm glad that you don't live with him anymore.

    I am so sorry your Mother's Day is awful.
  4. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Gosh, I am so sorry. Certainly understandable that you would have all the feelings you have, and yet, you've done everything you possibly can, it does not seem that there is anything else you can do. I know how devastating that is to hear, as mother's we want so desperately to help them, but he is 23 and now it is up to him. Yes, I think it is perfectly okay and normal for you to want to get away and start building your own life. You have done it all for him, you have done your best, it is up to him now. I don't know that this is typical behavior per say, all of our difficult child's are unique, however what is similar is our pain and suffering and each of us having to ultimately face detaching from them.

    Blackgnat, if you feel in your heart that you have done everything you can, and it sure sounds like you have, then all that is left to do is let go. Let him go to whatever your perception of a Higher Power is, surrender him to his destiny and do everything you can to take care of yourself and get support through this. I wouldn't look at it like "giving up on him" instead, I would see it as accepting that you've done all you can, that these are his choices, you have no control over his life and this is what is. The Serenity prayer can be helpful in these difficult moments. Gentle hugs to you and hopes that your path becomes easier and you find peace.
  5. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Blackgnat I dont know that I remember your posts well so forgive me if I welcome you again. I am so incredibly sorry that your son is causing you so much pain and heartache. It sure doesnt help that it is on Mother's Day. I honestly cant see that you can do anything else for him. It sounds like you have gone above and beyond.

    Sad as this is to say, I have met people like your son in my life and I dont know where they are today. None of them were living at home. All had left their homes and I thought that was a bit odd at the time but now I understand why.

    Other than alerting someone to your son's interest in serial killers, I dont know that there is anything else you can do. I am also not convinced that that is anything other than a manipulative tactic. How much more shocking can one get than saying I wanna be the next Ted Bundy?
  6. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It


    You have gone SOOOOO far above and beyond what ANYONE can expect of a parent in your situation. There truly isn't anything that you can do other than truly letting go and letting him live with ALL of the consequences of his choices. until now he has had you to keep him from living on the streets for the most part, from dealing with a lot of the consequencs of his choices. So he really hasn't had to choose a different path because you were there to help him.

    There isn't any way to lock him up because he is interested in serial killers. Unless he is caught or turned in for a crime, he has the same rights as anyone else. It sounds like the threat to kill himself when you die is manipulative.

    If he is court ordered to go to residential rehab, the only thing you cn really do is to tell the courts he isn't gong to go. Other than that, he needs to be left to his own choices and devices.

    PLEASE spend some time in therapy and alanon/narcanon and work hard on your relationship with your easy child. Most pcs feel they are pushed side and/or forced to give up their lives/goals/$/resources/parents/parents' love for the difficult child. We feel we worked dang hard to do all the right things, the things that were expected but all the attention went to the difficult children because they were always in trouble/crisis and we could 'wait' or 'be trusted to do the right thing with-o supervision'. It is something that parents don't really see that they are doing, but that needs to be worked on when parents can see this. Let easy child know that it is OK to close his door to difficult child, to not let difficult child into his home, to not share his resources, and to not answer the phone or call the cops if difficult child is t the door and won't go away. Having a difficult child sib takes a HUGE toll on a easy child, esp when one or both parents just keeps giving and giving tot he difficult child and expecting the easy child to care for the difficult child also.
  7. blackgnat

    blackgnat Active Member

    Thanks for all the replies and loving advice. Today he had an appointment to go to an Oxford House at 5:30, so I came at 4 to collect him and asleep on the couch. I woke him up and it was obvious he was drunk , so I called the place to say we wouldn't be coming. I guess I am just waiting for the cycle to repeat itself-he goes on benders, which produce a kind of psychosis and then he gets very physically ill and needs medical attention. Or he commits some kind of crime and is hauled off to jail. Then he gets sober, is full of remorse and wants to build a good life for himself. Takes no real action and off we go again.

    Except this time it's a little different because he won't have this house to come back to-just as well, as it's a very toxic place for him...

    He doesn't have a psychiatrist as he has no insurance and won't call the county. Thing is, after his last rehab and the ammonia on the brain discovery, he had failed to show up for a court date and he actually TURNED HIMSELF IN! I felt enormous hope because of this mature decision. He even had a bed waiting after a couple of weeks, but by this time the rot had set in, which is where we are now.

    Because he is so manipulative (I suspect Borderline (BPD), though his diagnosis is bipolar) I suspect that he is waiting until the very last minute to get into a residential rehab, and until then, he will continue on his debauched lifestyle. Part of me wonders if there is just that criminal space in the universe that some of us are destined to occupy...

    I am in therapy to deal with all this and I am trying to make sure that my easy child knows he is loved and that it's his time to shine. I don't fear for him because he has been to hell and back with his brother and knows I have his back. I have admitted my mistakes in focusing so much energy on the difficult child and easy child knows I love him.

    THanks for the good wishes. Fingers crossed, right?
  8. Star*

    Star* call 911

  9. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I cant tell you how hurtful it is to me when I hear people jumping to borderline when they hear serial killers, Ted Bundy and deviant sexual behaviors. Perhaps its a possibility but as a person who has it, just hearing that, that is why I freaked out so badly when I heard that I had the diagnosis.
  10. blackgnat

    blackgnat Active Member

    Oh, Janet, I hope you didn't think I was implying anything by the Ted Bundy reference. That's just what he said and I think that is part of the psychosis piece of his mental illness-he does have anti-psychiatric drugs but doesn't take them. He seems to have all the criteria for Borderline (BPD) and acknowldeges this himself. I don't think the two (psychotic and Borderline (BPD)) go hand in hand at all. He just seems to have both and the psychotic piece comes out when he has been drinking heavily. It's definitely got worse.

    When he is clean and sober he is a great young man but that person is being more eclipsed by the psycho as he drinks. Needs LOTS of help and I will click on the link provided to see what I can do to help.

    Thanks and didn't mean to hurt any feelings. Very lost and confused and so guilty that I am seeing my child more as the monster and not the human underneath. That scares me but is that a necessary part of detachment, or am I eroding part of my soul as time goes on?
  11. AHF

    AHF Member

    I agree about the possibility of Borderline (BPD) or Narcissistic Personality Disorder which is a close cousin. Therapists are reluctant to give this diagnosis because there's so little anyone can do. It took two years for someone to diagnose Peter Pan as Narcissistic, which had been my hunch from the git-go.
  12. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Sounds more to me like antisocial personality disorder. I have borderline and NEVER thought ANYTHING like that! Ted Bundy was a sociopath. Not saying you son is...just correcting this misconception of borderline.
  13. Star*

    Star* call 911

    Okay i had a HUGE LONG lengthy thing written out and it dumped so I went back to the thing with the MAYO clinic and BORDERLINE - and I'll explain why - I didn't mean to hurt ANYONE - and here's what I was thining...and why.

    FIRST OFF - I DO NOT THINK that the TED BUNDY thing is for ANYTHING other than to get attention. PERIOD! WHY? Because I lived with a socipath/PSYCHOPATH - natural born killer. For me to explain to ANYONE how evil this man was from birth - would be impossible. IMPOSSIBLE. I can tell you - he was charming, charasmatic, INTELLIGENT, beguiling, drug addicted, sexually deviant, perverted, self-centered, antagonistic, sadistic, perverted, mean, cruel, heartless, had absolutely =and I mean ABSOLUTELY ZERO remorse for anything that he did. MANIPULATIVE to the point that if he beat you to a pulp and put you in the ICU - and left you with broken bones.....HE could convince you that YOU did something to offend HIM to a degree that YOU deserved it - time and time again. And his Mother and most of his family - generations back - were similar in nature - his Grandfather was nearly identical in genetic makeup. Cruel sadistic , but I have no idea if he was a killer. How do they get away with things? Go figure - Some of them do for years and years. Then some of them get so full of themselves eventually they get caught. Doesn't make every one of them a serial killer - but the one thing that I did see in BLACK GANTS son - was REMORSE - and a few other between the lines - that made me think ------SALVAGEABLE -

    in my humble opinion - after KNOWING Borderlines - and living with a psycho? I'd WAY rather think - Gosh this kid can be changed - with therapy - and medicaitons - in years ------than to have someone say - he's pscyhopathic. MOST psychopathics (again in my HUMBLE non-professional what do I ever know) opinion....psychopaths are born....and sociopaths are created. I think they go through stages of CD, antisocial then sociopath. without treatment. I believe this personally because my own son - was the son of a psychopath /sociopath - (after being diagnosis with CD, and streaming rapidly towards anti-social) but we got him into therapy - and changed the mapping in his head. We averted the problem by fixing things that otherwise woudl have gone stagnant. Altered the state. You can't alter genetics. Psychopaths are genetic.

    So when she says things like - HE turned himself in - (to me) this is an admission of guilt. A willingness to want to fix things? (he wants to go to rehab) I think he drinks to forget the pain of something, some memory that hurts him so deeply...maybe he doesn't even remember. I think drugs was just the next natural progression. As far as his sexual orientation and preference? Maybe some of the hurt comes from not feeling like hes understood or accepted. I have no clue. Doesn't bother me - but if he's never fully accepted who he is or what he's out there doing? Maybe it does bother him? Maybe he doesn't understand any of it. Again I don't know. There are so many places here where I live that help kids out who are gay, bi - transgendered...I can't imagine anyone NOT getting help or having like-minded friends to help you with places to go, people to hang out with, but I DO know that even in some circles there are kids that don't fit -with kids that feel they don't fit. (understand?) Anymore in todays world? He's not such an outcast. And anything that you've said about the things that hes doing? Well I'm sure there's a lot of us here that just aren't sitting here with our mouths agape. I'm not. Except for amonia on the brain. That has got to be painful - but with him? I see a lot of pain.

    Then there's that - I'm going to give up after you die Mom hmmm. AFTER YOU DIE? Well why not now. What's the connection there to you? COMPASSION.....I don't think it's TO GIVE YOU PAIN Black Gnat - I mean if he was a psychopath or a serial killer - He'd be out killing other people - and taking care of himself - they are SELFISH people. NOT WORRIED ABOUT he doesn't want to hurt you first. THEN he'll go. Understand what I'm saying? THERE would be no - gosh I can't go first and hurt Mom. He's telling you - I don't want to hurt you any more than you already hurt - so I'll wait. COMPASSION. BUT he craves YOUR attention - and you're turning a blind eye to him - so WHAT could he do that he already hasn't done to get SHOCK value ? AHhhhhh TED BUNDY.....well - he's not even the worst there was. But he's one of the most famous. Yeah - I just don't see the psychopath connection. AGAIN - it's just me -

    What I do see - is self-harming behaviors and a lot of the OTHER behaviors displayed by borderlines - THAT is why I put up the link to the MAYO clinic. To me....and apparently not a lot of others.....but to me....his personality seems all over the place. But he's got co-morbids of alcohol abuse, and drug abuse tht could alter a lot of his behaviors. In between the lines? I see what I see - or see what I think I see. Mostly I see a kid that is frightened, of loosing his Mom. HAS ZERO coping skills with the world. ZERO anger management skills.....and for as many times as he's been taught lessons - does not grasp or refuses to grasp them. - My question to that would be WHY -WHAT is he so scared of? WHAT traumatic event set all this off, and changed his life? Or what series of events? At some point he's going to have to face all of those questions IF he wants to get fixed. And I said - I don't think he's hopeless. He just has to want to come back - MORE than he wants booze, Drugs and self-destruction. TO do that? He'll need help and by help - I don't mean Mom - YOU can be support - but you can't fix him. He's past the help you can give him. He needs a therapist, A higher power.but most of all he needs willpower and want. If he can find just one of those? He's got a start.
  14. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Star... I haven't been through what you've been through... but I'm going to second 99% of what you just said. The only diff being that I still believe psychopaths are not born that way either, that it's still a combination of genetics and what happens in those early years. And Black Gnat's son isn't one of those.

    There is hope, somewhere in that picture. The challenge is for the son to find the key...
  15. Star*

    Star* call 911

    I'll go with that - but in the case of my x - he was/is a natural born killer. So i do agree. I think you can raise one. Without therapy and intervention - ABSOLUTELY. I think you can take anyone and change the maping in their brain eventually.
    I just don't get the feeling from BG that her son would get or derive pleasure from being sadistic. I feel there is a human component alive in him that is salvagable - I think it's the part that loves and wants to be loved.
  16. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    That's how I read it, too...