The gut punch of motherhood

brokeninside

New Member
A punch to the gut. That is what it feels like right now.

My son is basically homeless again. His drug of choice is marijuana and I don't think vaping helps. It seems to really affect his mind negatively.

He has clearly developed some mental issues over the last few years. Getting mental health help for him has been NEARLY IMPOSSIBLE, Every practice, since the pandemic is fully booked, we go on waiting lists and nothing ever comes of it.

Over the last year and a half, we've reached a breaking point in my house. He is 25 and basically refuses to work a regular job. I've spent half of my retirement over the last year and a half helping him. He was so disrespectful to my husband (his step dad), calling him every nasty name in the book and everyone around him. He would vape in the house, bring marijuana into the house; etc. We finally had to throw him out. Since then he has couch surfed but now has no friends left. When we do let him back in, it has gotten physical. He gaslights - it seems to be his favorite hobby - and we don't feel safe when he is here. I also have a teen daughter with my current husband.

Then there are times when he is sober and he is his regular self and it is like visiting with my child that doesn't have these problems. I say he is acting like "the regular (name)". It's great.

The car drama has been unbearable - he had a nice car that we cosigned a loan on and he totaled it, He has tickets upon tickets. It was around the time of this accident that I noticed him starting to get really out of control. I bought him an $800 car to hold him over so that he could work and save to buy a new car and he ran it into the ground - never getting his foot hold to save for a new one. He has no car for months and would say, "I can't get a job without a car". Enter $3500 volvo. The car was a lemon, but there was a used car shortage and I was desperate. It ended up having a gas leak!!!! I felt so foolish. Threw in so much more money to fix it and he totaled it.

This is where he began to hit rock bottom. He was staying with some questionable friends, I think they were throwing him out and he fought back and one punched him and broke his jaw. When the fight happened, he called me to pick him up but I said no. He had cried wolf too many times and it was 2 am. I didn't know it was broken. He went two days and didn't get medical help and wouldn't. I finally facetimed him and said he needed to go to Urgent Care immediately, I took him to urgent care and they determined it was fractured. We ended up in the ER and it ended up being the best case scenario for this situation - no admittance, no surgery and his jaw wired shut for two weeks. Again, a small fortune for me.

Of course I took him back in to help him heal. He did not want the pain medications - refused them - which I thought was strange bc I kept wondering if he was into harder stuff. I made his liquid diet, I said just rest, sleep, chill out in your room, I was in enabling heaven. Would this help get my son back? It got ugly one day when he wanted me to drive him to get marijuana and that he needed it for pain. It is legal in my state and readily available. We argued, It became physical. He thought I was calling the police on him and he called them! The nicest officer in the world came. Tried to talk him into going to the hospital to get mental help, He said OK. We got into the car and he refused to go. I've read many reviews for the help at the hospital crisis center. It is abmismal. Every review said you wait hours and hours and hours and they send you home with nothing. They send suicidal people home. It's just awful. While things calmed down, it was clear that he couldn't stay with us. He stayed until we had the wires removed and for about another week then my sister let him come visit for two weeks to give him more time to let his jaw heal.

My niece happened to be selling her car for $2500. My husband and I thought this might be good because he is going to be homeless. At least he would have a car to sleep in after he left my sisters?? We bought him the car but we told him his Grandmother paid for it and he had to pay HER back. We thought he would be more likely to honor the agreement if it was with her. The car was old - a 2000 honda but at least he could get a job and if worse came to worse, sleep in it. We bought him a gym membership so that he would have access to a shower. We did it for guilt for him and for our own conscience.

After he left our home and went to my sisters, I gave my husband my word that I wouldn't let him back into the house. My husband is starting to have health issues and he has been through enough with my son.

After my sisters, he was couch surfing again, but he was out of favors from friends. A sort of a Hail Mary pass was thrown his way from his uncle. He had a roofing job in Texas that would begin in a few months and maybe my son could work it. He would have housing and a job. He asked me for my advice. I gave him a big talk about laying low, not driving the car a lot because it's old, finding a job until the Texas thing worked out, maybe chilling in his car if he needed to instead of bugging friends.

The very next day,without saying anything to me about it, he drove to his friend's house in TEXAS. 1700 miles away!!!!!!.

(We pay for his cell so that we can see his location. I stopped checking his location because I needed to detach, but my husband keeps an eye on it bc he doesn't want him showing up here and starting something.)

About an hour outside of his destination, the honda died. RIP. It was done. He had the car for 27 days and managed to kill it.

I was done. I folded. He was stuck in Texas with no way to get home. I said, 'this is your life, figure it out" The friends let him stay 3 weeks before they had enough. I think they tried to have him get a job and he wouldn't and they were like, "go home". They helped him scrap the car and got him an airline ticket back. These are boys from our town that I knew in middle school. They must have been angels to put up with him this long.

NOW he's back in our area.

I said I'm done.

Another Hail Mary came to him, HIs friend is a painter working on a house flip. The man that owns the flip let him work and sleep there for the last two weeks.

I saw my son for the first time in a month yesterday. He came out and was carrying a bag and looked homeless. My heart is broken. I am devastated.

I Took him for food and took him to the house flip to stay at. Everyone said don't go pick him up, it's a trap. I even felt it was. He got in the car and he tried to manipulate, make me feel guilty, etc. My husband was not happy I went. I took him to the house flip and he said the guy didn't really want him staying there anymore. I didn't know what to do. I just went in with him and he showed me the work he had done and we talked and I left. Three hours later he called and said the guy wanted him to leave and the guy was nice about it, but basically said, when you get your head on straight, you can work with me, but work it out with your parents. I said I'm sorry there is nothing I can do. He went to another questionable friend's house.

When he went to Texas I gave up. His real Dad lives in Florida and hasn't been responsible with his life. He was an alcoholic when we were married and was just never there for my son. He is no longer drinking. He recently found out he might have cancer. Now he wants to help my son, Unfortunately, he doesn't own a home and can't have my son live with him. It wouldn't work anyway as they are both hot heads and my son gaslighting. HOWEVER, he has lined up a job for him in Florida that starts in two weeks. My son said he can stay with a friend - but we know how that works out. He said he wants to go but I can tell he is scared. Scared of failure. I feel like he doesn't want to go but has no choice. It is going to be cold here soon.

My husband and I don't know if we should help him for the next two weeks and also to get settled in Florida. He has a better chance of success if we help. His real Dad has no money to help but at least got him the job. and it is a pretty decent one.

It's 6 am here and I've been up since 4 am. Not an unusual night of sleep for a mom whose child is basically on the streets.

I can't stop shaking. I'm sick to my stomach. My heart hurts. I can't eat.

No one in this situation has done more self care than myself -
- I've read books, "how to have boundaries with your adult child" - basically a manual on detachment and followed it
- Read the stories on this board to know I'm not alone.
- Keep a copy of the conductdisorders "detachment" article in my inbox to read when I'm feeling weak
- Watch countless videos on detaching, motivation, self care
- meditate (the calm app),
- work out at the gym,
- cut back on alcohol,
- go to my check ups (my head won't work if my body doesn;t),
- I tried the FA zoom but got scared and left. I wasn't able to be open and raw with anyone.
- took a trip to Europe this summer and found myself again - I wanted to keep on LIVING before it was too late.I can honestly say that was the best detachment that I've had in this hell. I jumped into the mediterranean sea and just let everything go.
- Planning a trip to Greece next summer but already feel GUILTY as heck - how can I go to Greece when he is homeless? I have to put my life on hold again? What if I run out of time? We are only promised today after all.
- Do journal exercises by writing but, after I'm finished writing it, I rip it up and flush it down the toilet so that I can write whatever I am feeling and know that no one will ever read it - it is very therapeutic.
- Made a list of all of the enabling behaviors that I wouldn't do and read it when I'm weak and I'm weak.

He had a very promising future, Accepted to a good college, a trip to Europe before college began, girlfriends, jobs, etc. In college he and his roommates

tha decided to be the pot dealers on campus and his roommate put all these get rich quick schemes into his head - day trading, stocks, bitcoin, not working a regular 9-5 and that, coupled with pot, has just ruined his brain.

As I type this, I see the sun has come up. I look outside to the beautiful sky. Is it a sign of hope?

Thank you for listening.
brokeninside
 

BusynMember

Well-Known Member
Hi there. Sorry that you have to walk the same path as most of us.

Nothing got better for us until we closed The Bank of Dad and Mom. It took ten years and our marriage on the rocks and my other children very upset with our enabling behavior. We joined NarAnon and got into therapy. Addiction is a family disease and we were sick. Very sick. While there was and is nothing we can do to change our daughter we learned how to detach with love and to work on ourselves and my horrible enabling, in particular. Kay cut off contact when the bank closed but not until she saw that we were truly, truly done spending our retirement on her. She kept testing us but we were done. We gave her not a penny and if she tried to manipulate us out of money, we ended the phone call.

Kay is not better and.not worse. She lives ub a dilapidated old moterhome on the street with her useless husband. They both managed to get SSDI from the government with includes Food Share and Meficare%Medicaid plus a case manager that yhey can call but never do call for assistance.

My family, minus Kay, are happy and finally peaceful. Most of what helped us came from Nar Anon. There are Zoomeetings now. You can find meeting times and numbers on the internet.

These are the three Cs of NarAnon:

"I did not cause it, I can not control it, and I can not cure it.".This is all true. We have no power over our addict. We can't control another person or do anything to help. Help doesn't help. We can control the behavior and reactions of one person in the world....us. That is the limit of our power to change anything. Your son will only get well if he wants to. Abuse grim him is not okay. It is domestic abuse. Your son will not succeed ibecause you save him temporarily from the cold and homelessness. He will only succeed by his actions...and only if he wants to. All your help hasn't cured him yet. It won't. You will just go broke. And he will take, take,btske and still not get help until he wants to. Or not.

Wishing you peace and big change in your behavior towards your addict. Recommend Nar Anon! You can listen without talking.
 
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Blighty

Member
Man, you have been through a lot. I feel your pain. Not knowing whether to stick by your boundaries or try one last time what could be a life changing situation for your son. There are no right or wrong answers. Perhaps this time he will have some respite if can start the job with your support. Perhaps he won't. Perhaps it will be even worse than before. There is no easy answer. What ever you do, you will learn from it, and perhaps will know more surely what is the right thing for you to do next time. No one here is going to judge you, which ever choice you make. You have a really difficult situation to deal with over these years. It's heart breaking. You are not alone.
 

brokeninside

New Member
Hi there. Sorry that you have to walk the same path as most of us.

Nothing got better for us until we closed The Bank of Dad and Mom. It took ten years and our marriage on the rocks and my other children very upset with our enabling behavior. We joined NarAnon and got into therapy. Addiction is a family disease and we were sick. Very sick. While there was and is nothing we can do to change our daughter we learned how to detach with love and to work on ourselves and my horrible enabling, in particular. Kay cut off contact when the bank closed but not until she saw that we were truly, truly done spending our retirement on her. She kept testing us but we were done. We gave her not a penny and if she tried to manipulate us out of money, we ended the phone call.

Kay is not better and.not worse. She lives ub a dilapidated old moterhome on the street with her useless husband. They both managed to get SSDI from the government with includes Food Share and Meficare%Medicaid plus a case manager that yhey can call but never do call for assistance.

My family, minus Kay, are happy and finally peaceful. Most of what helped us came from Nar Anon. There are Zoomeetings now. You can find meeting times and numbers on the internet.

These are the three Cs of NarAnon:

"I did not cause it, I can not control it, and I can not cure it.".This is all true. We have no power over our addict. We can't control another person or do anything to help. Help doesn't help. We can control the behavior and reactions of one person in the world....us. That is the limit of our power to change anything. Your son will only get well if he wants to. Abuse grim him is not okay. It is domestic abuse. Your son will not succeed ibecause you save him temporarily from the cold and homelessness. He will only succeed by his actions...and only if he wants to. All your help hasn't cured him yet. It won't. You will just go broke. And he will take, take,btske and still not get help until he wants to. Or not.

Wishing you peace and big change in your behavior towards your addict. Recommend Nar Anon! You can listen without talking.
Thank you, Busynmember-
Your posts and responses are some that I've been reading and have gotten me through the past few months. It is like having a glimpse nine years into the future and knowing the only person we can help is ourselves. I just want to pick him up and bring him home where he is safe but it would mean the end to my marriage and an unstable environment for my daughter. It's not fair to either one of my husband or daughter. or me. but it doesn't stop the pain of loving my son and it doesn't stop me wanting to help him. I am a 17-year cancer survivor and I still think this is the difficult thing I have gone through - they are at least tied. Thank you for listening and for your guidance - it is appreciated much deeper than you know. I will try NarAnon. Thank you.
 

brokeninside

New Member
Man, you have been through a lot. I feel your pain. Not knowing whether to stick by your boundaries or try one last time what could be a life changing situation for your son. There are no right or wrong answers. Perhaps this time he will have some respite if can start the job with your support. Perhaps he won't. Perhaps it will be even worse than before. There is no easy answer. What ever you do, you will learn from it, and perhaps will know more surely what is the right thing for you to do next time. No one here is going to judge you, which ever choice you make. You have a really difficult situation to deal with over these years. It's heart breaking. You are not alone.
Thank you, Blighty - it means a lot to have someone to "talk" this through with and it has helped me a lot. Ultimately, I know that he has to make this happen. There will be ways that we can help. I have miles that are going to expire that I can use to buy him an airline ticket. I can help him get car insurance coverage for a non-owner vehicle, so he can drive the work truck or rent a car while he saves for a car. We could help him get housing initially. Some clothes (again), but he has to be the lead on this or it will just be another frustrating exercise for us.

My biggest takeaway from seeing him yesterday is that I'm going to take another attempt at getting him counseling. maybe pay out of pocket for something online that he can do from where ever he is from his phone.

I just need to be gentle with my heart and give myself a break for a little bit.

Thank you for listening, helping, just being there.
 

Fairy dust

New Member
So very very sorry you are going through this. I agree with the others that your son will only change when he wants to. We as mothers want so desperately to save them, but the result is that the enabling behaviour creates even more toxicity. We too provided money, education, condo and it was all destroyed by his entitlement, addiction and mental illness. family dynamics changed forever but it wasn’t until I finally detached things changed. I realized I had to love myself enough to let him go. Yes, love myself enough to let him go. We would never put up with this abuse from anyone else. I was tired of being a victim….his victim. But then I realized I had put myself in this position. Lots of therapy, lots of help from the few friends left, this site, spirituality, ever seeking my way. When I finally did, guess what? He started to change, take accountability, seek help. please get yourself help. You owe it to you and your other family members. Read the article on detachment hourly if need be. And please show compassion to yourself. Love yourself enough to let him go and trust that he will find his way. Hugs.
 

Nandina

Member
Hi Brokeninside, and welcome. This is the club that no one really wants to belong to, but here we all are, with children in different stages of drug addiction, mental illness and in general, just being off the rails.

As parents, we’re all in different stages as well with what we are willing to endure in support of these kids. Everyone here has been through similar experiences with being the victim of their kids’ disrespect, being taken advantage of financially, and pretty much feeling trampled on.

Many of us have reached the point where we have said, “no more.” Others haven’t reached that point yet, and may never or perhaps it will take some more time. It would be wonderful if we didn’t have to reach that point, but unfortunately for most of us it becomes necessary. We all have different tolerance levels and there is no judgment here, just understanding and support because we all have “been there.”

Personally, I have had it with my son, at least for now and I wish to maintain this position for a good while. I need a break. He chooses drugs, thugs and misbehavior over responsible behavior given every opportunity. He is younger than your son, 21, but has been homeless and becomes unhinged when he does certain drugs. His drug of choice is also marijuana. It’s not legal here. When it wasn’t available he would smoke meth for a cheap high.

He committed a felony under the influence and spent 6 months in jail. He is a child who was raised as an only child after the other two left the nest, and he had many opportunities and advantages—good education, camps, sports, medical care and every therapy imaginable because he had behavioral issues from the time we took guardianship of him at 3-1/2 years old. (bio mom abused drugs/alcohol while pregnant with him)

We have paid for drug treatment three separate times in two years and each time he gets kicked out due to attitude and behavior. We once had an apartment all ready for him to move into that he blew due to drugs, paid for a lawyer to help get him out of jail after he had a psychotic break there and begged and pleaded that he knew he needed treatment and “this is the last time” and guess what? He doesn’t give one whit about the money we’ve spent for these things nor does he care to be accountable for his behavior or for the promises he’s made to us. He just wants what he wants when he wants it and to hell with everyone else. I think that‘s pretty much the definition of entitlement.

I’ll take Busy’s advice and not waste my retirement savings and 10 years on this endless cycle of abuse!

You know all the right things to do with regard to self-care and it sounds like you really work at it. It’s so very hard! I’m glad you found us but wish you didn’t have to.

If I can provide one piece of advice it would be not to spend money on vehicles for addicts/alcoholics because most often they will total them, not to mention the danger in letting them drive. My son doesn’t drive. Until he does, he’ll have to live close to a bus route. I would worry about liability as well, if you are providing insurance for your son on your policy but every state is different.

I hope you will take Busy’s advice and check out Nar-anon. I think it will help ground you during those moments of weakness we all experience and certainly understand.

Hugs to you.
 

Nomad

Well-Known Member
Broken inside…My heart ached reading your post. So many things. I’ve had such a similar situation. Many of us have. It’s overwhelming and so over the top insane, at times it’s hard to share with others and even if you want to, they may not “get it.” Heck…often times it’s VERY hard for us to “get.”

Our adult child broke rules, was chaotic, unkind, moody, impulsive …lacked empathy, manipulative, refused to take an ounce of personal responsibility , often showed little to no remorse , ungrateful, argumentative …you name it.

She could do a bit better with a few good friends. And at times briefly with us if she wanted something.

But with us her family…well…always unkind etc.

To say it was extraordinarily tough is an understatement.

It culminated with something so big it became crystal clear to us she did not want to change nor would she. It did not matter how much we gave her …in terms of necessities or help , professional assistance…whatever.

And after she caused humongous problems…horrible stress, chaos and sorrow for us ….little to no remorse and a boatload of ugliness directed toward us yet.

Similar to you…I’ve read a ton of books, definitely educated myself on mental illness, practiced self care etc.

(by the way, was thrilled to see that you said you practiced self care and travelled. Plus reading the detachment piece. Super good stuff. You are a wise and strong woman!!!)

I know for me I missed some huge things. She doesn’t want to change. She doesn’t want help. She doesn’t acknowledge for some reason that life isnt working out well for her and she needs help. And hurting us is absolutely not a motivator. Nada.

It’s been hard as HECK, but we are moving on. We like the literature at Families Anonymous. Although it’s a tiny bit different since fortunately drugs are not an issue in our case (recognize that sadly this could change…of course we hope not). Oddly, the behaviors seem the same.

Those three C’s are powerful and true. And so is that detachment piece. I have found prayer comforting too.

Please keep posting here. Lots of wise folks here.

Sending good thoughts.

Blessings.
 

brokeninside

New Member
So very very sorry you are going through this. I agree with the others that your son will only change when he wants to. We as mothers want so desperately to save them, but the result is that the enabling behaviour creates even more toxicity. We too provided money, education, condo and it was all destroyed by his entitlement, addiction and mental illness. family dynamics changed forever but it wasn’t until I finally detached things changed. I realized I had to love myself enough to let him go. Yes, love myself enough to let him go. We would never put up with this abuse from anyone else. I was tired of being a victim….his victim. But then I realized I had put myself in this position. Lots of therapy, lots of help from the few friends left, this site, spirituality, ever seeking my way. When I finally did, guess what? He started to change, take accountability, seek help. please get yourself help. You owe it to you and your other family members. Read the article on detachment hourly if need be. And please show compassion to yourself. Love yourself enough to let him go and trust that he will find his way. Hugs.
Thank you so much for responding and sharing your story with me. I recently read a quote that resonates with me, "What got you here, won't get you there....The same set of circumstances, beliefs, actions, that got you to a moment won't get you to what comes next. If you a different outcome, you have to behave differently. That you have to keep evolving". I really like what you said about love yourself enough to let him go <3
 

Nomad

Well-Known Member
“I realized I had to love myself enough to let him go. Yes, love myself enough to let him go. We would never put up with this abuse from anyone else. I was tired of being a victim….his victim.”

Thank you Fairy Dust.

Powerful. Beautiful. True.
 

brokeninside

New Member
Hi Brokeninside, and welcome. This is the club that no one really wants to belong to, but here we all are, with children in different stages of drug addiction, mental illness and in general, just being off the rails.

As parents, we’re all in different stages as well with what we are willing to endure in support of these kids. Everyone here has been through similar experiences with being the victim of their kids’ disrespect, being taken advantage of financially, and pretty much feeling trampled on.

Many of us have reached the point where we have said, “no more.” Others haven’t reached that point yet, and may never or perhaps it will take some more time. It would be wonderful if we didn’t have to reach that point, but unfortunately for most of us it becomes necessary. We all have different tolerance levels and there is no judgment here, just understanding and support because we all have “been there.”

Personally, I have had it with my son, at least for now and I wish to maintain this position for a good while. I need a break. He chooses drugs, thugs and misbehavior over responsible behavior given every opportunity. He is younger than your son, 21, but has been homeless and becomes unhinged when he does certain drugs. His drug of choice is also marijuana. It’s not legal here. When it wasn’t available he would smoke meth for a cheap high.

He committed a felony under the influence and spent 6 months in jail. He is a child who was raised as an only child after the other two left the nest, and he had many opportunities and advantages—good education, camps, sports, medical care and every therapy imaginable because he had behavioral issues from the time we took guardianship of him at 3-1/2 years old. (bio mom abused drugs/alcohol while pregnant with him)

We have paid for drug treatment three separate times in two years and each time he gets kicked out due to attitude and behavior. We once had an apartment all ready for him to move into that he blew due to drugs, paid for a lawyer to help get him out of jail after he had a psychotic break there and begged and pleaded that he knew he needed treatment and “this is the last time” and guess what? He doesn’t give one whit about the money we’ve spent for these things nor does he care to be accountable for his behavior or for the promises he’s made to us. He just wants what he wants when he wants it and to hell with everyone else. I think that‘s pretty much the definition of entitlement.

I’ll take Busy’s advice and not waste my retirement savings and 10 years on this endless cycle of abuse!

You know all the right things to do with regard to self-care and it sounds like you really work at it. It’s so very hard! I’m glad you found us but wish you didn’t have to.

If I can provide one piece of advice it would be not to spend money on vehicles for addicts/alcoholics because most often they will total them, not to mention the danger in letting them drive. My son doesn’t drive. Until he does, he’ll have to live close to a bus route. I would worry about liability as well, if you are providing insurance for your son on your policy but every state is different.

I hope you will take Busy’s advice and check out Nar-anon. I think it will help ground you during those moments of weakness we all experience and certainly understand.

Hugs to you.
Hi Nadina and thank, you - I am taking it day-by-day but have evolved so much since last year. Last year it felt like I was chasing every crisis every day - I was his SWAT team that he would call in to fight that day's emergency and there were so many countless emergencies. This year, I was much tougher...yesterday was the second time I have seen him in person since mid-June and it hurt. It was the gut punch.

Thankfully, my husband is really good at protecting us financially from devastation of his actions. He has had his own car insurance policy since he began driving. And my husband has a retirement account for us when it is time. It doesn't lesson the sting from using my little retirement account that i started as a single mom and never touched. I was proud of it. I'm angry that I touched it. At the time, I thought I was doing the right thing by helping him "get back on track", but once that train left the station, it took a lot of self reflection to realize that I can't live two lives. I have my life and he has his life. Only he can do it for himself, But not letting him in kills me inside. I'm a softie. I won't back down and will use these words I have read today as a reminder to make smart choices and don't give in!!! thank you!
 

brokeninside

New Member
Broken inside…My heart ached reading your post. So many things. I’ve had such a similar situation. Many of us have. It’s overwhelming and so over the top insane, at times it’s hard to share with others and even if you want to, they may not “get it.” Heck…often times it’s VERY hard for us to “get.”

Our adult child broke rules, was chaotic, unkind, moody, impulsive …lacked empathy, manipulative, refused to take an ounce of personal responsibility , often showed little to no remorse , ungrateful, argumentative …you name it.

She could do a bit better with a few good friends. And at times briefly with us if she wanted something.

But with us her family…well…always unkind etc.

To say it was extraordinarily tough is an understatement.

It culminated with something so big it became crystal clear to us she did not want to change nor would she. It did not matter how much we gave her …in terms of necessities or help , professional assistance…whatever.

And after she caused humongous problems…horrible stress, chaos and sorrow for us ….little to no remorse and a boatload of ugliness directed toward us yet.

Similar to you…I’ve read a ton of books, definitely educated myself on mental illness, practiced self care etc.

(by the way, was thrilled to see that you said you practiced self care and travelled. Plus reading the detachment piece. Super good stuff. You are a wise and strong woman!!!)

I know for me I missed some huge things. She doesn’t want to change. She doesn’t want help. She doesn’t acknowledge for some reason that life isnt working out well for her and she needs help. And hurting us is absolutely not a motivator. Nada.

It’s been hard as HECK, but we are moving on. We like the literature at Families Anonymous. Although it’s a tiny bit different since fortunately drugs are not an issue in our case (recognize that sadly this could change…of course we hope not). Oddly, the behaviors seem the same.

Those three C’s are powerful and true. And so is that detachment piece. I have found prayer comforting too.

Please keep posting here. Lots of wise folks here.

Sending good thoughts.

Blessings.
Nomad, you are such a good spirit. I cannot thank you enough for these words of encouragement! You've helped me put my head on straight! You hit the nail on the head with how hard it is to share and still figuring it out ourselves!! You pointing out what you missed is exactly what my mind is blind to see but deep down inside, my fears are true. I am going to read the FA literature, Prayer has gotten me through so many of my low points in life. Thank you for the hugs and blessings. <3
 

Glenna

New Member
Hi Brokeninside,

I just posted so have little strength left. Just want to extend sympathy and empathy. But it does occur to me that your enjoyment of the Mediterranean didn't subtract a thing from anyone and added something good to someone who needed it. (You.)

Guilt is not good. Nor is giving to the point of weakening ourselves of course, but at the same time I think I would have done everything the same as you did. Maybe one thing that would help would be to let go of what we do and not criticize ourselves. Take the action and let go of the result as they say in program. There is so much crazy fog when dealing with these kinds of people that we can easily get sucked into depression and even self-flagellation.

My new theory is going to be - anything, ANYTHING, such as your vacations, that brings us back to being centered and happy - which is a form of wisdom I am sure - is something to be done.

I took a course on mental illness form NAMI and asked the teacher if she had ever had a parent who was not destroyed by grief. She thought a minute and answered yes. It was a very nice man who had a strong faith. What I took from that is that he didn't feel he had to bear the whole burden himself.

Feel better and enjoy your nice family.

Glenna
 

brokeninside

New Member
Hi Brokeninside,

I just posted so have little strength left. Just want to extend sympathy and empathy. But it does occur to me that your enjoyment of the Mediterranean didn't subtract a thing from anyone and added something good to someone who needed it. (You.)

Guilt is not good. Nor is giving to the point of weakening ourselves of course, but at the same time I think I would have done everything the same as you did. Maybe one thing that would help would be to let go of what we do and not criticize ourselves. Take the action and let go of the result as they say in program. There is so much crazy fog when dealing with these kinds of people that we can easily get sucked into depression and even self-flagellation.

My new theory is going to be - anything, ANYTHING, such as your vacations, that brings us back to being centered and happy - which is a form of wisdom I am sure - is something to be done.

I took a course on mental illness form NAMI and asked the teacher if she had ever had a parent who was not destroyed by grief. She thought a minute and answered yes. It was a very nice man who had a strong faith. What I took from that is that he didn't feel he had to bear the whole burden himself.

Feel better and enjoy your nice family.

Glenna
Glenna - Thank you so much and I absolutely love this! You are so right.

Isn't it insane that Mother's can physically feel the pain of their children? It's the curse of motherhood. That it is somehow our job to carry that burden. But, I have to remember that he is not a child to be protected, but a man that lives a full and separate life from myself.

I do not want to get to the end of my life and REGRET not taking the trip or going for that thing that I wanted to do (whatever that thing is) bc I put my life on HOLD waiting for my son to get his life together. The entire world was put on hold in 2020 and we all had to WAIT to do the things we wanted to do. We can't wait our lives away.

The great thing about it was that it broke my normal walls down and gave me perspective on how crazy things had become at home. I was determined not to return the same person and I came back a much stronger person.

And, I cannot carry this burden alone. Got to give it to God.

I'm ready to jump in the water, again! Thank you!!
 

Ascending

Member
Hi Brokeninside, I am pretty new here! And just finding my way.

My son is younger than yours (20) (you can read my story if interested).

I did let my son back home. With some restrictions . I made the restrictions what I need.

That is, not that he should get counseling or whatever, but what my expectations and needs are. It is not perfect by any means, but big improvement to what situation was. I try to catch things as they start to fall back into old patterns. I Need to do that now! - I have found the book In Sheep’s Clothing by George Simon especially helpful . It is particularly about dealing with manipulative people. And being able to recognize the manipulation.

I also decided to look at things like marijuana use as a choice, not a sickness, not really an addiction problem. He chose to do it. He can choose to get over it. No one but him can make that choice. But I can choose to not accept it in my home.


He also totalled and trashed cars and spent down most of an inheritance. Seemed to think himself very hot stuff where having another and another will just happen. (He does seem to have a good luck superpower, sort of similar to your description of your son, where another and another Hail Mary keeps coming along. And kept getting blown. He also, I think, let “friends” convince him to use things he should not have, first vapes going around his high school, and then moving on from there. Let “friends” have him be the one to take his car out in snow and crash it, while theirs stayed safe and sound. Etc

If mine wanted therapy I would help him achieve that, and I did mention it. Particularly Eye movement therapy which could perhaps do a lot quickly. But that would be something he might or might not want to do - so far not. I do not need him to have therapy. And I do not want him to act like therapy is what he provides as his contribution to family. When he was younger he seemed to think guitar lessons or ice skating was a contribution he was making to my well being and to helping household, not something being given to him.

Anyway, for him to be here, I do need him to behave himself decently. To treat me well (respect, kindness, etc). And right now, to contribute to some home cleanup etc too. Especially in this week when he is between the two jobs.

If he wanted to be home, he had to stop using. Or certainly must not act like he’s using. I know that I may not be able to tell.



Getting a job was part of requirements, and he did get one (luckily my son did want to, just had had an inflated sense of what type first job he could get). ... So far with job 1, worked just briefly then quit. (It was legitimately very disorganized and even potentially dangerous due to disorganization plus tools like chain saws in use.) Now he has another job starting a week from today pending passing a drug screen which at least for me is somewhat of an unknown stressor whether he will have passed. ( And not wanting to call to ask.)

I think taking care of ourselves is critical. Not doing so doesn’t help us nor the manipulative adult child.

I think giving it to God is huge!!!

Probably giving it to God is the best thing we can do!!!
 

Crayola13

Well-Known Member
I hope the drug test doesn’t hold him back from starting the new job. There are ways to disguise a drug test with herbs like goldenseal. He probably knows all about it. I hope the living arrangement works for you both. Most of all I hope he doesn’t get mean and out of control again.
 

Ascending

Member
No, I don’t think he did know about goldenseal. I certainly didn’t. He hoped the around two weeks off would be enough for it to have cleared his system
 

YogiLori

Member
A punch to the gut. That is what it feels like right now.

My son is basically homeless again. His drug of choice is marijuana and I don't think vaping helps. It seems to really affect his mind negatively.

He has clearly developed some mental issues over the last few years. Getting mental health help for him has been NEARLY IMPOSSIBLE, Every practice, since the pandemic is fully booked, we go on waiting lists and nothing ever comes of it.

Over the last year and a half, we've reached a breaking point in my house. He is 25 and basically refuses to work a regular job. I've spent half of my retirement over the last year and a half helping him. He was so disrespectful to my husband (his step dad), calling him every nasty name in the book and everyone around him. He would vape in the house, bring marijuana into the house; etc. We finally had to throw him out. Since then he has couch surfed but now has no friends left. When we do let him back in, it has gotten physical. He gaslights - it seems to be his favorite hobby - and we don't feel safe when he is here. I also have a teen daughter with my current husband.

Then there are times when he is sober and he is his regular self and it is like visiting with my child that doesn't have these problems. I say he is acting like "the regular (name)". It's great.

The car drama has been unbearable - he had a nice car that we cosigned a loan on and he totaled it, He has tickets upon tickets. It was around the time of this accident that I noticed him starting to get really out of control. I bought him an $800 car to hold him over so that he could work and save to buy a new car and he ran it into the ground - never getting his foot hold to save for a new one. He has no car for months and would say, "I can't get a job without a car". Enter $3500 volvo. The car was a lemon, but there was a used car shortage and I was desperate. It ended up having a gas leak!!!! I felt so foolish. Threw in so much more money to fix it and he totaled it.

This is where he began to hit rock bottom. He was staying with some questionable friends, I think they were throwing him out and he fought back and one punched him and broke his jaw. When the fight happened, he called me to pick him up but I said no. He had cried wolf too many times and it was 2 am. I didn't know it was broken. He went two days and didn't get medical help and wouldn't. I finally facetimed him and said he needed to go to Urgent Care immediately, I took him to urgent care and they determined it was fractured. We ended up in the ER and it ended up being the best case scenario for this situation - no admittance, no surgery and his jaw wired shut for two weeks. Again, a small fortune for me.

Of course I took him back in to help him heal. He did not want the pain medications - refused them - which I thought was strange bc I kept wondering if he was into harder stuff. I made his liquid diet, I said just rest, sleep, chill out in your room, I was in enabling heaven. Would this help get my son back? It got ugly one day when he wanted me to drive him to get marijuana and that he needed it for pain. It is legal in my state and readily available. We argued, It became physical. He thought I was calling the police on him and he called them! The nicest officer in the world came. Tried to talk him into going to the hospital to get mental help, He said OK. We got into the car and he refused to go. I've read many reviews for the help at the hospital crisis center. It is abmismal. Every review said you wait hours and hours and hours and they send you home with nothing. They send suicidal people home. It's just awful. While things calmed down, it was clear that he couldn't stay with us. He stayed until we had the wires removed and for about another week then my sister let him come visit for two weeks to give him more time to let his jaw heal.

My niece happened to be selling her car for $2500. My husband and I thought this might be good because he is going to be homeless. At least he would have a car to sleep in after he left my sisters?? We bought him the car but we told him his Grandmother paid for it and he had to pay HER back. We thought he would be more likely to honor the agreement if it was with her. The car was old - a 2000 honda but at least he could get a job and if worse came to worse, sleep in it. We bought him a gym membership so that he would have access to a shower. We did it for guilt for him and for our own conscience.

After he left our home and went to my sisters, I gave my husband my word that I wouldn't let him back into the house. My husband is starting to have health issues and he has been through enough with my son.

After my sisters, he was couch surfing again, but he was out of favors from friends. A sort of a Hail Mary pass was thrown his way from his uncle. He had a roofing job in Texas that would begin in a few months and maybe my son could work it. He would have housing and a job. He asked me for my advice. I gave him a big talk about laying low, not driving the car a lot because it's old, finding a job until the Texas thing worked out, maybe chilling in his car if he needed to instead of bugging friends.

The very next day,without saying anything to me about it, he drove to his friend's house in TEXAS. 1700 miles away!!!!!!.

(We pay for his cell so that we can see his location. I stopped checking his location because I needed to detach, but my husband keeps an eye on it bc he doesn't want him showing up here and starting something.)

About an hour outside of his destination, the honda died. RIP. It was done. He had the car for 27 days and managed to kill it.

I was done. I folded. He was stuck in Texas with no way to get home. I said, 'this is your life, figure it out" The friends let him stay 3 weeks before they had enough. I think they tried to have him get a job and he wouldn't and they were like, "go home". They helped him scrap the car and got him an airline ticket back. These are boys from our town that I knew in middle school. They must have been angels to put up with him this long.

NOW he's back in our area.

I said I'm done.

Another Hail Mary came to him, HIs friend is a painter working on a house flip. The man that owns the flip let him work and sleep there for the last two weeks.

I saw my son for the first time in a month yesterday. He came out and was carrying a bag and looked homeless. My heart is broken. I am devastated.

I Took him for food and took him to the house flip to stay at. Everyone said don't go pick him up, it's a trap. I even felt it was. He got in the car and he tried to manipulate, make me feel guilty, etc. My husband was not happy I went. I took him to the house flip and he said the guy didn't really want him staying there anymore. I didn't know what to do. I just went in with him and he showed me the work he had done and we talked and I left. Three hours later he called and said the guy wanted him to leave and the guy was nice about it, but basically said, when you get your head on straight, you can work with me, but work it out with your parents. I said I'm sorry there is nothing I can do. He went to another questionable friend's house.

When he went to Texas I gave up. His real Dad lives in Florida and hasn't been responsible with his life. He was an alcoholic when we were married and was just never there for my son. He is no longer drinking. He recently found out he might have cancer. Now he wants to help my son, Unfortunately, he doesn't own a home and can't have my son live with him. It wouldn't work anyway as they are both hot heads and my son gaslighting. HOWEVER, he has lined up a job for him in Florida that starts in two weeks. My son said he can stay with a friend - but we know how that works out. He said he wants to go but I can tell he is scared. Scared of failure. I feel like he doesn't want to go but has no choice. It is going to be cold here soon.

My husband and I don't know if we should help him for the next two weeks and also to get settled in Florida. He has a better chance of success if we help. His real Dad has no money to help but at least got him the job. and it is a pretty decent one.

It's 6 am here and I've been up since 4 am. Not an unusual night of sleep for a mom whose child is basically on the streets.

I can't stop shaking. I'm sick to my stomach. My heart hurts. I can't eat.

No one in this situation has done more self care than myself -
- I've read books, "how to have boundaries with your adult child" - basically a manual on detachment and followed it
- Read the stories on this board to know I'm not alone.
- Keep a copy of the conductdisorders "detachment" article in my inbox to read when I'm feeling weak
- Watch countless videos on detaching, motivation, self care
- meditate (the calm app),
- work out at the gym,
- cut back on alcohol,
- go to my check ups (my head won't work if my body doesn;t),
- I tried the FA zoom but got scared and left. I wasn't able to be open and raw with anyone.
- took a trip to Europe this summer and found myself again - I wanted to keep on LIVING before it was too late.I can honestly say that was the best detachment that I've had in this hell. I jumped into the mediterranean sea and just let everything go.
- Planning a trip to Greece next summer but already feel GUILTY as heck - how can I go to Greece when he is homeless? I have to put my life on hold again? What if I run out of time? We are only promised today after all.
- Do journal exercises by writing but, after I'm finished writing it, I rip it up and flush it down the toilet so that I can write whatever I am feeling and know that no one will ever read it - it is very therapeutic.
- Made a list of all of the enabling behaviors that I wouldn't do and read it when I'm weak and I'm weak.

He had a very promising future, Accepted to a good college, a trip to Europe before college began, girlfriends, jobs, etc. In college he and his roommates

tha decided to be the pot dealers on campus and his roommate put all these get rich quick schemes into his head - day trading, stocks, bitcoin, not working a regular 9-5 and that, coupled with pot, has just ruined his brain.

As I type this, I see the sun has come up. I look outside to the beautiful sky. Is it a sign of hope?

Thank you for listening.
brokeninside
OMG, I totally understand as I do all the self help things you do! I just joined this website today because I do not want to feel alone. I totally agree, marijuana has/is ruined my son's brain. He literally is so dependent on someone for everything. He is so capable but he will not help himself. I am broken too and you are not alone. I am not sure what the answer is.......I am a saver, a recovering codependent and a people pleaser. WE love our son's. Somehow some way they just have to figure it out......What has been getting me through is a daily mantra " I will accept whatever happens" " I will be at peace with whatever happens" - we have too because we have no control over their decisions. But I am being honest, I am not at peace and Im not accepting ......... Im trying
 

YogiLori

Member
So very very sorry you are going through this. I agree with the others that your son will only change when he wants to. We as mothers want so desperately to save them, but the result is that the enabling behaviour creates even more toxicity. We too provided money, education, condo and it was all destroyed by his entitlement, addiction and mental illness. family dynamics changed forever but it wasn’t until I finally detached things changed. I realized I had to love myself enough to let him go. Yes, love myself enough to let him go. We would never put up with this abuse from anyone else. I was tired of being a victim….his victim. But then I realized I had put myself in this position. Lots of therapy, lots of help from the few friends left, this site, spirituality, ever seeking my way. When I finally did, guess what? He started to change, take accountability, seek help. please get yourself help. You owe it to you and your other family members. Read the article on detachment hourly if need be. And please show compassion to yourself. Love yourself enough to let him go and trust that he will find his way. Hugs.
Your post is very inspiring. It is soooooo hard to detach. My husband can, I am really struggling. I am doing what you are doing, I hope in time it helps....
 

Blighty

Member
Welcome YogiLori ! Sorry you that you have a situation with your own son around drug use. I am glad you found us on this website
 
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