Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by trinityroyal, Jan 16, 2008.

  1. trinityroyal

    trinityroyal Well-Known Member

    Hello Susan,

    In your Moving On! thread, I mentioned the list of phrases that we can use when we are trying to detach from our difficult children.

    (I hope I'm doing this right...)
    Here is the link to the post from the archive:
    Detachment phrase list

    All the best, and stay strong,
  2. witzend

    witzend Well-Known Member

    I love this list. I also always loved Dear Abbey's advice that "No is a complete sentence." And of course, Fran's always timely advice, "If you do what you always did, you'll get what you always got."
  3. trinityroyal

    trinityroyal Well-Known Member

    Witz, I too loved Dear Abbey's advice about "No."

    Years ago when I had a backbone made entirely of cotton puffs, I used to stand in front of the mirror and practice saying No until I felt like I owned it. It's made a world of difference in what I no longer have to put up with from people.

    Fran's advice is great too.
  4. Coookie

    Coookie Active Member

    I also loved the list, Dear Abbey's advice and Fran's saying and it works... one step at a time
  5. witzend

    witzend Well-Known Member

    That's the wonderful thing about baby steps for me. I seem to get so much further with them than when I try to take giant strides. And it hurts a lot less!
  6. Scent of Cedar II

    Scent of Cedar II New Member

    Baby steps are good.

    Slowly but surely, we find ourselves in a better, healthier place.

    And when I first began using these phrases? It was so hard for me to say even the most innocent-sounding versions of "no".

    I would be as hurt by the bad things that happened to difficult child as he was, and always wanted to fix everything.

    I led from my heart, not my brain.

    These phrases (which I reviewed before I ever posted about the current potential situation with difficult child) have helped me find a beginning place to practice "no" ~ which is really the first, so hard step toward practicing detachment from outcome.

    I am so glad that thread was archived.

    Thanks, Suz.

    You have made such a difference for so many of us.

  7. Star*

    Star* call 911........call 911

    Pre-Detachment and Effective communication skills I could have been called STAR - the spineless wonder.

    Now I'm dat dah dah dahhhhhhhh......THE MEANEST MOM EVER....who doesn't care.....wha!

    You should see how much I don't care. Yeah - that's it! boy oh boy!
  8. standswithcourage

    standswithcourage New Member

    Well I dont even know where to post anymore! I am going to visit my difficult child tomorrow. I havent been since Dec. 24. I kinda know what he is going to ask me. I have talked to as many people as I can on his behalf - I will say what are you doing for yourself. I will try and talk to a mental health person there also. Pray for me that I can be strong still and in front of him. Pray that I say the right things. How do I PM now? I dont see where anyone can PM me on this forum?
  9. trinityroyal

    trinityroyal Well-Known Member

    Sending prayers, Susan, that you can be strong during your visit with your son. You've already shown us that you can be strong...I think you need to show yourself.

    Be strong,
  10. standswithcourage

    standswithcourage New Member

    Thanks Trinity! I will and then I will go to my daughters hair salon and get my hair cut!!!!! Not like Britney Spears though!
  11. trinityroyal

    trinityroyal Well-Known Member


    Maybe like Posh Spice? That bob is really cute.
  12. standswithcourage

    standswithcourage New Member

    Well I tried! My hair looks a lot better. I am about ready to do something drastic! Maybe a nose job!!!!
  13. standswithcourage

    standswithcourage New Member

    Well I am just feeling so weary today. I dont know why. I just feel like I am not doing enough. My husband and I met with the ministry man last Sunday over coffee and we all agreed my difficult child needed to stay put. It makes me feel sad but I cant imagine the alternative if it didnt work out. Help me to see what I am doing is right. I have sent him some books and magazines and have written hiim 2 letters. I talked to the Mental Health lady and she says he seems to be doing ok. He is not taking his medicine. She said she was going to meet with himi and get him to sign something so she could discuss his case with me. I know he is tired of being there and most of all the other times I have put myself in his shoes and have suffered right along with himm. this time I have gone on with my life - I havent forgotten himi or where he is but I have to continue to live - it is weird. thanks for listenting
  14. witzend

    witzend Well-Known Member

    ...I talked to the Mental Health lady and she says he seems to be doing ok.

    That sounds good.

    If he's doing ok, then that should be a good thing.

    You had me in your corner right up until here. Why on earth would you put yourself in his shoes? Did you shop for those shoes and ignore everyone's advice that they are pug-ugly and don't fit yet go ahead and buy them anyway?

    He threw everything you gave him away with both hands. He walked into the jail with his eyes wide open. He is 24 years old, you really should not be talking to his therapist for input or advice. You should be getting on with your own life, and allowing him to fix his. Or not. But if you ever want to be happy for any period of time you have to accept that nothing you do will ever fix it for him.

    Time to do for you. Way past time to leave him be.
  15. Big Bad Kitty

    Big Bad Kitty lolcat

    Agree with Witzend 100%.

    He's tired of being there? Too damn bad!

    Susan, every time I think you are getting it...hmm...it's almost like you are afraid to jump in. You've been with us since August, and you just keep dipping your toes in the water of detaching.

    JUMP IN and LET IT GO already.

    HE. IS. A. GROWN. MAN.
  16. Star*

    Star* call 911........call 911

    I have Pug-Ugly shoes - and they are just cute as the dickens -

    Susan - if you want to PM go to any one of your posts and click on your name Standswithcourage - a box will pop up and then you can see how to unleash your PM abilities.

    I don't know why I thought your son was 21, but anyway I found some information for you about places he can transition to AFTER he gets out of jail.

    I will say this - he can thank his lucky stars he's in GVCJ because I've been to both there and RCDC - and LCDC - that place (while ominous) is a palace compared to the county jails here - I sat and watched that video thing in the foyer when we were there (9 hours) and even my son said he'd rather be back in that jail than go back to the group home he was in.

    Be strong - I think we all know what you mean when you said "be in his shoes". I don't think you want to be in 'his' shoes - you are just trying to make sense out of his life. I don't know a parent that doesn't do that to some degree, but.....at 24 things aren't going to change unless HE wants them too. Heck for mine - at 17, - at 7 things aren't going to change for them unless they want them too.

    I did a neat exercise with my son the other night - We sat down and wrote out ALL the times /days/years/months he's spent it Residential Treatment Center (RTC)'s, jail, group homes - and hospitals. We added up the days. I told him that the figure represented roughly 11 years of his life that he has THROWN away and wasted. 4015 days.....of doing what? And while I didn't think that it bothered him - today he tells me that he's stupid. That math is hard. That while everyone else was getting an education he was sleeping, being a jerk and drawing motorcycles. I said - yes, you did that. And he said "I've wasted my life." and I said - YOU have a choice - choose today to make the REST of your life count. Stop doing dumb stuff, stop making poor decisions. - then I said - Because while I'll always be your Mom - I can't mother you much more. Time for you to figure out how to do this on your own. Yes, it's hard - sure we'll support you, but we're done giving you the easy way out. Time for you to grow up.

    And I said it in a loving, matter of fact way - not with tears or begging - just like HEY - here's the deal and I walked away.

    If anyone could be in my sons shoes - I wouldn't wish his life on anyone but my x. That much he deserves. But that much good or bad - he'll never have. That's got to be enough vindication for me - and my son had a very hard /disgusting childhood.

    And while the words may come across harsh - If they didn't care about you to being with - they wouldn't post at all. So consider yourself loved.
    Lots of people read this - not many will post - but however you take the advice is up to you. Personally I'm glad anyone cares. lol.

    Hugs for your day - SENDING YOU A RHINO SKIN SUIT - for the visit.
    and of course a prayer or 100.

  17. witzend

    witzend Well-Known Member

    I agree with everything Star said. Except about the shoes. Pug-ugly is just plain pug-ugly! ;)

    It seems to me that your son is doing relatively well where he is. There isn't as much opportunity for drama, and it sounds as though he has lightened up on the begging for drugs? I hope that you will start to take control of your life. What I see from the outside looking in is that even from jail your son is in control of your family. I hope that you will find a way to invest in yourself and your husband and your difficult child.
  18. standswithcourage

    standswithcourage New Member

    You are right but sometimes I just feel plain guilty for not going to visit him every week! I dont know why. I have been spending time with my daughter since her husband is out of town. Of course we havent talked about her brother. I was talking to a co-worker of mine today about her cousin that was addicted to drugs and killed himself. He followed the Grateful Dead and was on LSD and all that. He killed himself in prison. That scares me to death but I know it is always something that could happen. I just hate thinking that way. Thanks
  19. Star*

    Star* call 911........call 911


    If I could sit here today and predict the future - and tell you scenario #1 is =

    You stop going to jail on a weekly visiting schedule
    You cut back your visits to one time a month
    You get up and LEAVE the visitation window if he starts his junk
    And then don't go back for a long time -

    And that would dramatically change your sons life, he would get out of jail, realize he messed up, start treating you like a human being, a mom, someone he respects - never do drugs again, be able to come home, sleep on your couch, started getting up at 6:00 am and left by 6:30 to work with workforce or any place that would take him, bring home his check and give you 1/3, help you around the house - get a permanent job - go to AA or CA for the rest of his life - find a girl, treat her great, buy a house, marry her - have children and be a blessing to behold -

    I would tell you to stop going to the jail - stop feeling guilty - stop trying to predict his future because I already told you what would happen IF you stopped going and took a stand =-

    But sadly - None of us have any idea what our kids are going to do. I too worry about my son and suicidal tendencies - he's had 1 1/2 attempts. I worry every day that I just may say the right thing in the wrong way and set him on fire, have fallout and loose that time together - I worry now that my son is 17 and looking at 6 years in adult state prison - I worry that everything I've done up to now as a Mom and advocate just did not stick.

    But I don't feel guilty - about choices that he made IRREGARDLESS of WHAT happened to him as a child - and I can tell you that few here have ever had to endure what he did.

    So while I'm not guilty about his decisions, I still allow myself to feel bad because no one wants to see their children suffer in ANY way - but sometimes the suffering is what THEY need - it's like THEIR gift FROM God - it's HIS wake up call to them saying "Look child - your MOther did all she could and you still insist on being a jerk so HERE is what I'm going to do for you. I'm going to put you in county jail and let you get your feet wet in the justice system and HOPE that you call on me and HOPE that you see - it CAN get much worse."

    No one wants it to get worse - but it HAS to be up to him to see his own reflection in the mirror and not like what he sees, and STOP blaming you, but YOU have to stop doing it too.

    Hugs for your hurting brain and heart - I know this is hard. For us - jail is like the cherry on our road kill sundae. We avoided jail at all costs - it was for the bad bad bad guys - it wasn't something that we ever thought would happen to us - and when it happens to our kids - we'll do any and everything to keep them out. But sometimes - not all cases - but sometimes - it's just what they need to get a straight, non-alcoholic, non drug view of their lives.

    If you can't go to the jail - tell him it's too hard on you -
    If you can go - go when you can - and tell him you love him -

    In the mean time - take this opportunity of NOT having to worry where he is or what he is doing or if he's alive or dead - and invest some in yourself, your hubby and your other kids -

    They deserve you too Stands - really they do.

  20. standswithcourage

    standswithcourage New Member

    I am Star. My husband and I are going on a weekend trip tomorrow. I just second guess myself all the time. It is just not knowing that drives me crazy. My own mother always said I liked to have a plan - everything needed to be planned out for me - a schedule - well it is not. I was the doting mother, a good mother and I tried everything I knew how - I feel like I even chased him down the road a time or two - everything - the coworker I was talking about said that her cousins mother felt guility for him commiting suicide because she wished she had tried more to help him - I started to think about all the things I had done and I couldnt think about anything else I could have done - I havea been to everyone but the Governor and I have talked to so many people - maybe I didnt see the other signs but we had him evaluated many times and sent to doctors, etc. - he would only use them for what he wanted and I would pay sometimes $200. only to see nothing change. Thanks for emailing me back. It helps to vent to someone who understands. I have been reading your posts. Can you PM me to where that place is? I know the area. I sure am glad Dude is at home. How is it going?