Struggling more and more

Discussion in 'Substance Abuse' started by AmericanGirl, Jul 24, 2012.

  1. AmericanGirl

    AmericanGirl Guest

    I've been struggling more and more. I cannot think or relax. I cry all the time. I went to therapy and to al-anon today plus went to a phone al-anon meeting and had several outreach calls.

    difficult child's trying to get an old using pal to rent an apartment near here. The kid is living with his parents now and has no car but has some cash from an inheritance. Of course he doesn't know I know this - or that he is telling people he is moving back here Friday.

    difficult child told me he looked for a job for several hours today and has an interview on Thursday. He also told me that 4 people relapsed yesterday which the sober house manager says is a lie.

    Manager has talked to difficult child several times in the last few days. difficult child is fighting with his roommate because difficult child won't clean up. Manager tells difficult child that it can't be everyone else wrong all the time - the common denominator is difficult child.

    Cell phone records show difficult child hasn't talked to sponsor in 3 days.

    Talked to my therapist today. She knows difficult child as she treated him several years. She said that after so many deceptions for so many years, that these behaviors are ingrained into his personality.

    I know I am waiting for the shoe to drop - to refuse to pay his rent, get the car back and tell difficult child to call me when he is serious. He told me yesterday he was "NOT going to live in a homeless shelter"...then again he told me he wasn't going to rehab or to a sober house.

    It's just hard - to be a single parent - with little family - and deal with this. I really need advice. If you have any suggestions - anything - I'm open. Thank you!

  2. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Awww, I am so sorry AG, I know how hard it is, and to be a single parent with little family makes it all so much worse. I wish I could gather all the parents here to come to your home and do a difficult child Mom intervention where we would all cook you good yummy food, surround you with chocolate and hugs and make you laugh with a contest of who has the worst difficult child. In the absence of that, we can continue to listen and hold you close in our hearts, send you cyber hugs and pray that you are enfolded in loving arms so that you never feel alone and scared again.

    My tricks to calm myself down when I've been in that panicked state is to take a hot bath with lavender or any relaxing, calming properties, drink some soothing tea, call a good girl friend, take deep breaths and try to find anything to feel grateful for, (which switches the brain terror onto a new path) and of course, to pray. Many of us have now gotten our brains accustomed to having the neurotransmitters go into the 'panic ditch' when our kids do things to scare us and we have to retrain our brains to avoid going down that path. I am in the process of doing that myself, just trying to NOT let those thoughts gain any control and it is HARD. It's like being an addict, but we're addicted to waiting for the other show to drop. Remember, nothing has happened yet, you're caught in the worry and fear. Right now in this moment, you are okay. Keep telling yourself that. I am sending you gentle hugs and prayers for peace and calm.
  3. Nancy

    Nancy Well-Known Member Staff Member

    AG he is sounding and doing what so many of the addicts including my difficult child did. They try to desensitize you by telling you all the people that relapsed. I never understood why difficult child couldn't wait to tell me every day who relapsed, who left and who got kicked out. She stopped calling her sponsor too and then I knew what was happening. You want his sobriety more than he does, I know been there done that. Until he wants this more than anyone else it won't work. We want them to stay sober, follow the program, make a new sober life for themselves. But then we see the subtle signs of relapse and our hearts crash. We can't do it for them AG as much as we want to. He may have to relapse and pick himself up again. It isn't the end of the world, even though it feels that way. Most addicts relapse several times before it sticks. Remember he has so much more knowledge now and the tools he needs to both get sober and stay sober. He just doesn;t want it right now.

    I understand so well. After several relapses and treatment programs and sober houses you know my difficult child left and is now living the life of an addict, in her words "having the time of her life" now that she is 21. She isn't ready to be sober. As much as I want it for her there is nothing I can do but sit back and watch and hope she doesn't die before she reaches out for help. She told me that she was never sober more than 60 days.

    I wish I knew how to tell you to get through this period but yoou just have to walk through the pain, continue to go to your meetings, read as much as you can about relapse, and begin to detach, pull back. You can't keep him from doing whatever it is that he is planning to do. It must be so hard being a single parent and not having someone to go through this with. Don't panic. Draw your line int he sand, know what you are willing to accept and hold that line. He won't be homeless. They find someplace to stay.

  4. Kathy813

    Kathy813 Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Aw, AG, I wish I had some words of wisdom. I heard those things, too. My difficult child was not going to rehab or a sober house and ended up in both. She would tell me stories about others using drugs in the sober house and I don't know to this day if it was true.

    All you can do is set your boundaries and let your difficult child do what he is going to do. I think it is great that you are going to your support groups. Keep up the manta: You didn't cause it, you can't control it, and you can't cure it. Your difficult child has to do the work.


  5. pinevalley

    pinevalley Member

    AG: You have done everything possible to help and support your difficult child. You are a wonderful mother, but you should really try to think about yourself for a change. If your family does not live near by, is there a friend who you can call just to talk? I hope that you can spend a little time every day to take a walk, read a book, or do anything else that can get your mind off of your difficult child. I know how hard it is try to detach from a difficult child. I can almost make myself sick with worry over my difficult child, and there is nothing that I can do for him right now. The only way that I can get through each day without constant worry about my difficult child is to deliberately try to think about other things which will take my mind off of the mess that my difficult child has made of his life. I also say the serenity prayer whenever I start to get upset about my difficult child, and that really does help to calm me down.

    You are not alone in your journey with your difficult child. We are all on the same path with our difficult child's - trying to detach, and offer them help when they will accept it. I am sending you lots of hugs for a calmer, more peaceful day tomorrow.
  6. Signorina

    Signorina Guest

    So many words of wisdom here...and I can only add that I understand and I care. A lot.

    You've been thru so much. You've supported & cheered on your difficult child for a log time. Forgiven him, fought for him, financed him, all the while loving him with all your heart. And now (when he should be starting to count his blessings) he's looking for scapegoats. It feels futile and it hurts.

    I am hoping he is just bristling as he is coming to another lesson learned. Like baby fussing before a growth spurt.

    In the meantime, take care of yourself. Celebrate you and your good health news. {{{hugs}}}
  7. pasajes4

    pasajes4 Well-Known Member

    Stop talking to him. Get in your car and go somewhere. Turn off your cell phone or block his calls. Stay with a friend. Let him go. If he were not your son, you would stop having anything to do with him.

    We love our kids to death.....ours...our health, our sanity, our joy.
  8. Calamity Jane

    Calamity Jane Well-Known Member

    Oh AG, it's hard. I want to tell you some things, hopefully they'll help:

    We're all lonely in our own way, even if we have family, or DHs, whatever, because as mothers, we're never exactly on the same page as anyone else in our family. husband doesn't even want to listen to me most of the time when I rant on, I get a glazed look and he just sort of backs out of the room. husband is a "no drama" kind of guy, suppresses everything, goes to work long days, and doesn't dwell. I'm a dweller, so even though I have family with me, my experience is isolated, Know what I mean?? I won't even trouble my daughter with anything, because she's been through so much and I want her to live her own life. I can't confide in my SILs who live nearby, because they're ultra competitive gals with perfect adult children, and I would only feel like a loser. So you're not alone by being alone, because truly you've reached out and we're here, you go to meetings, and you're doing all the right things.
    OK, now...Thank God your scan was clean. What if it wasn't? Would you be wasting one minute of your time on difficult children repetitive journey that you have no control over, or would you be thinking about all the time you wasted and regretting it, and vowing to make the rest of your life significant from here forward? If that's the case, then do it, honey, because YOUR life is YOUR gift, and that's not selfish talk. You gave everything, you've emptied yourself, you have permission to cry this week as much as you need to, but then you have to get off this train to despair, and move along. If difficult child leaves the sober house, gets an apartment nearby, gets in trouble again, what can you REALLY do? If he does those things, he's effectively jumping off a bridge. Should you follow? I think not! difficult child has to answer for his life, and you can't get inside his brain and impart any more words of wisdom that you haven't already. Let go and let God take care of his consequences, you've done enough Ms. Atlas with the world on your shoulders. Time to put that boulder down!
    Have faith - keep praying; it seems like praying is such a little thing, but it's more powerful than anything you could think of doing. God doesn't want you to hurt like this, just give it all over to Him. It's not giving up on your difficult child, it's giving your will up to God's will, and getting out of the way, so He can do His job, whatever the consequences may be that we don't understand right now. RE's idea of a lavender bath and being grateful is terrific! Do I hear the water running????
  9. RN0441

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

    Calamity I am new here and found your response to AG very helpful to ME - when we are moms dealing with difficult child we really are alone as you said. My husband doens't understand how I feel either but is very supportive.
  10. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    The whole entire journey is a heartbreak magnified by lies and the intense hope that they are getting "it". been there done that. I am really really sorry but being a single parent may or may not make it worse. Hugs. DDD
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  11. wantpeace

    wantpeace New Member

    I'm so sorry, AG. I feel your pain because we are in a similar place. I'm a single parent to three boys, and my ex was abusive as well. Maybe it's an excuse, but I think tough love and detatching is tougher as a single parent because we are "everything" to our children. I feel the need to compensate for the fact that my boys' father chose his addiction over them. When my difficult child was giving me a rough time, his counselor said not to take anything from him that I wouldn't take from a friend. Easier said than done of course! I want you to know I've been inspired by many of your posts. You are a very strong person, and I give you all the credit in the world for getting to meetings and reaching out for help. You need and deserve some pampering. Tell difficult child that you need a break and won't be having any contact with him for a period of time. Do something nice and nurturing for yourself for a change. Sending prayers and hugs your way.

  12. AmericanGirl

    AmericanGirl Guest

    Thank you all for your many wonderful replies. Know that I am taking them to heart and using many of your ideas.

    You are right...single parent may be a blessing or a curse...just depends.

    First...a funny. difficult child called tonight. Very nice. Done what he needed to do. Asks for $10 to get food. Reasonable so I say I'll transfer cash as soon as I hang up. I do. Then I open Facebook. He actually posted, "Tired of getting threatened by my family." I transferred the $10 right back. Sent him text saying "Your transfer is reversed. I don't give money to people who insult me."

    I have a wonderful guy friend who happens to be in al-anon. We talked a long time tonight. He knows me very well and understands how I think. He also knows difficult child. He gave me a ton of great advice. We have a revised plan of action which I can live with -- however -- darn it, he asked me for several promises regarding my behavior. I promised to turn my cell off every night and not to look at it until I have completed my morning routine. He also thinks I need to set myself a regular bedtime.

    Here's what my plan is - I'm sharing it because I think some of his ideas were stellar and maybe it might help someone here.

    1. I'll pay his rent as long as he is allowed to stay in sober house. Long story as to why but basically, he's an immature, 19 year old and may need more time to grow up. If he is there, then he will make progress whether he likes it or not. If he leaves, he's gonna fail. But...not telling him I'm willing to pay rent.

    2. Pending manager's approval, going to have manager ask difficult child for rent every week. When difficult child says he doesn't have it, then manager can say he will call me. Public embarrassment of having the other guys know "his mommy" is paying again.

    3. Manager will get extra funds for difficult child's gas, incidentals, etc. Takes me out of the loop. difficult child has to ask him. Manager mentioned the other day he does this for some residents.

    4. Telling difficult child is you don't have a job by August 10th, then I'm coming to get the car. Don't care what job, where, etc. Not mentioning it again. If he doesn't, then I'll ask manager to get his keys (assuming he gets off restrictions between now and then and is allowed to keep them) and I'll get a friend to go with me. No notice...just drive in, grab the car and go.

    Anyhow, hope there is something which helps one of you.

    Side note - about the lavender baths...a friend just went through training to become a certified aromatherapist. She's taught me a lot and even made me customized bath salts and oil blends in tiny vials which I can rub on my temples. Much cheaper to do that than buy commercial stuff. Awesome effects too!
  13. Nancy

    Nancy Well-Known Member Staff Member

    AG you sound like you are in a better palce. Yay for your alanon friend, that is a good plan. I agree that at 19 they are not yet mature enough to be completely financially independent and as long as he is in sober house I agree with paying the rent. We were happy to do that for difficult child.

    Just a note of caution I did what you did when I saw facebook postings and she finally defriended me so I couldn't see her anyore. I often had to just grit my teeth and ignore what she wrote so I wouldn't lose that contact.

  14. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Glad to hear you're feeling better AG and you got to talk to a good friend. Your plan sounds like a good one. Happy you're using your aromatherapy too! :its_all_good:
  15. AmericanGirl

    AmericanGirl Guest

    Nancy, I thought about that. So, I set up a second FB account in an alias. difficult child will friend anybody. Gotta stay one step ahead. LOL
  16. exhausted

    exhausted Active Member

    I love that you transfered the money right back! Good limit setting!! You are doing so well and it helps me to seee this. I am glad you have a support person as well and the aromatherapy is great. Anything that brings joy, peace and relief!

    On the FB thing-I am not a friend anymore because I did a public blast when I was ticked. (Didn't think it through-just did it) The only thing I can do is message her. I have several of her friends, cousin and my sister who kind of let me know. My difficult child never posts about her family-always about people she is mad at or lyrics to song and swear words and..... We are not on the radar at all unless we have some cash to steal or unprotected car keys!

    Your doing great!
  17. 92025

    92025 Member

    very clever idea! I'm doing this and just got 10 friends in 5 minutes! 7 degrees to difficult child!