Update on difficult child

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by Childofmine, Jan 23, 2015.

  1. Childofmine

    Childofmine one day at a time

    Hello all of you Warriors! I say that with the utmost respect for each one of you, who is still in the trenches, trying to deal with complete craziness from someone you love so much.

    I wanted to give you an update on difficult child.

    As you may know, he got out of jail June 26. He dodged another bullet, because he was set to serve all of his sentence for his two felonies, due to breaking his probation. The full sentence was four years. He said his attorney told him to prepare for it, so he went into court ready to hear that he was going to state prison. But he got probation again. He told me he was terrified and spent the entire night before awake, dreading the court appearance.

    He went back to the street as neither my ex-husband (his dad) or myself would let him come to our houses. In September he got a job through a friend at a McDonald's and starting working 40 hours a week. Still homeless. That went on for about 6-8 weeks, until my ex-husband, his dad, called me and suggested we help difficult child get an apartment.

    I was very hesitant about that. My ex wanted us to commit to a certain amount per month. I said no. But I did, after thinking about it for a few days, agree to provide some financial help. My ex-husband was convinced that difficult child had changed. I felt there was some merit to that as I had observed a change in the way he talked, acted, behaved, but I was still hesitant. I have been burned many, many times.

    But we did help him financially and he got a studio apartment and moved in Oct. 26. My ex and his wife started talking with him about a budget. We all helped him with groceries, furniture (he has a ton), clothes, towels, etc. At that time he was riding a bike to work, and his new apartment was just 10 minutes from his job at McDonald's. They really liked him there, and you could tell that although he was embarrassed about working at McDonald's, he was proud that he was valued. That was nice to see.

    Within a few weeks, he got another job---working through a temp firm for a boat manufacturer. He works 48 hours a week---getting overtime for the extra 8 hours, at minimum wage. He works second shift. So then, he was working 48 plus about 25 still at Mcdonald's---having cut back there. Both minimum wage.

    So that has been going on for about three months. His girlfriend is living there with him. She is the one who presumably stabbed him back in the summer when they were both drunk. She was convicted of that charge but it was reduced to a misdemeanor. difficult child still says she didn't do it. Anyway...

    A few weeks ago, difficult child broke his hand hitting a wall during an argument they were having. Then, a few weeks later, I got a FB message from her saying she was pregnant, but don't worry, we will probably get an abortion. That was Dec. 13. I didn't respond and I never mentioned it to difficult child, his dad or easy child. I decided it was none of my business, and that I needed to turn it over. I also welcomed her here for Christmas and had presents for her.

    This week, difficult child called me very early one morning to say that they were leaving the hospital. girlfriend had a miscarriage. He was upset, having dealt with it all. She had the miscarriage at their apartment in the shower. They didn't know what to do, and ended up calling 911 when she got dizzy and faint. He and she were both extensively questioned by police about the situation. I understand why they do that, and I also know that both of them are well known to the police as well.

    Anyway, my son said he didn't want to have a baby and talked to her about terminating the pregnancy but she didn't want to so he didn't say anything about it again. This week he said that even thought he didn't want a baby, he was sad about what happened. I told him that was perfectly normal and understandable.

    The girlfriend doesn't have a job. I asked him about that, and he said they have been arguing about that.

    I don't get a lot of things: why he is with her in the first place, why she doesn't have a job, why they allowed themselves to get pregnant, etc. There is a lot to question.

    I also continue to work to let go of it all. My son is 25 years old. He will have to live with the consequences of his decisions, whatever they are. He is making progress, and I can only hope and pray it continues and leads him to a better place, and then another better place.

    I have come a long, long way in accepting what is. I still don't like it, and sometimes I allow myself to get twisted up about things. I am thankful that I was able to let go of this latest situation and let God do what God does. I continue to go to Al-Anon and life is very good.

    I appreciate all that each of you teach me every day on this board. Thanks to you all and I wish you peace.
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  2. Scent of Cedar *

    Scent of Cedar * Well-Known Member

    Thank you, COM. It is good to know how you and your family are.

    I am so pleased for each of you.

    I wish your son, and you, continued success. I will remember the phrases "letting go and letting God do what God does" and "I decided it was none of my business, and that I needed to turn it over."

    That is a very hard thing. You have done well.

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  3. dstc_99

    dstc_99 Well-Known Member

    Well other than the unhealthy show of anger by punching the wall things sound better. The girlfriend is an issue we all wish we could explain. I swear we all had one of "those" SO's at one point. The one we knew was not good for us but just couldn't let go. Hopefully things will change and he will be able to get away from her.

    I am sorry about their loss and your loss too. I know a baby is probably not something difficult child needs to be dealing with right now. But I am also sorry you didn't get to meet your grandchild. Someday when the time is right maybe you will get to be a grandma. Hopefully that someday will be when difficult child is stable and in a healthy relationship.
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  4. Lil

    Lil Well-Known Member

    It really does sound positive overall. He is maintaining not just one, but two jobs and apparently paying his bills. That level of responsibility is more than a lot of difficult child's manage. It's touching, what he said about the baby; that he's sad even though he didn't want to be a father yet. To my mind that is a reasonable and normal emotional response that any typical, decent man would have.
  5. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    He's moving on in the right direction. Tough love does pay off eventually, if anything is going to work! You did great and so is he doing great.

    I never get involved with my grown kids relationships or SO's. If they call me to talk, I mostly listen. That is their life's path to take. I can tell you I did not like my oldest daughter's SO at first. He and she were living with his mother, and she isn't all that well-balanced, but, hey, it kept them both off the street right after daughter quit using drugs and I appreciate that. But her SO did not work for years and I started to wonder if he ever would grow up. My daughter was working hard for both of them. He finally went back to school (he is very bright) and got a computer something degree :) He was able to get a job and absolutely grew up. A better father to his little girl does not exist. He is now one of my own kids to me :)

    Kudos to your entire family. It's so great to hear good stories and this is a very good story. He can not be using many drugs if he is working that much.
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  6. Tanya M

    Tanya M Living with an attitude of gratitude Staff Member

    It sounds like he's moving in the right direction. The fact that he's working is awesome and 2 jobs!!
    Hopefully his girlfriend will get a job too.
    The fact that he got probation again instead jail time is great. Perhaps he's realizing he was given another chance and that is having an impact on him.
    I'm happy that you are continuing to work on letting it all go.
  7. Albatross

    Albatross Well-Known Member

    It is great to hear from you, COM.

    I think there is always a lot to question, even with PCs.

    What great progress he has made. I think you have done such a wonderful job of letting go and still wisely knowing when it is appropriate to provide a little hand up.
  8. SeekingStrength

    SeekingStrength Well-Known Member

    This is a sad story, but your son's life seems to be moving in a positive direction, despite the major events. I am glad you shared this, COM, because I bet it was good for you to post it.

    Your son seems to be doing SO much better than just a few months ago. I am sorry for the loss for all of you, but I remember reading (more than once) that a miscarriage is often nature's way of "taking care" of a worse scenario down the road---perhaps a baby with a sad prognosis. I am not a doctor and do not know this to be true....but I do believe things happen for a reason. Tough times for anybody, and perhaps especially a young couple finding their way.

    Hugs to you.
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  9. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Good to hear from you COM, and it does sound like your son is moving ahead, bit by bit, growing up and figuring it out. It's pretty remarkable in a way that he is supporting his girlfriend, 2 jobs is a lot. You sound good. Thanks for the update.
  10. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Great update. You have all come a long way.
    I'm so glad that he is working two jobs and really trying hard. BRAVO.
    So sorry about the pregnancy and miscarriage. I can't help but wonder if her drug use had anything to do with the miscarriage. I am glad that even though difficult child didn't want the baby, he was sad when she miscarried. Thinking something abstractly and then having it happen in reality are often two different things. He's a good man.
    I wish they would clean up the drinking and fighting, but I think that having a place of his own took a lot of pressure off, and help with any depression that came from living on the street.
    Don't know what to say about the girlfriend ... sigh.
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  11. nlj

    nlj Well-Known Member

    Hello COM

    I'm sad to hear of your son's girlfriend miscarrying. I suppose it's the wrong time for a child and these things happen for a reason, but it's still sad. Your son's mixed feelings about this are understandable.

    It's hard to have so many unanswered questions. I've stopped asking myself "why this" and "why that". All those questions used to keep me awake at night. The strange attractions between people are one of life's mysteries. Maybe we could apply those questions to ourselves - I have no idea why I was with my first husband, I have no idea how I managed to get pregnant at the age of 45... I mean... how ridiculous! Why do we fall in love with the people we fall in love with? Why does my husband love me? You could equally ask 'why is your son's girlfriend with him?' as 'why is he with her?'. I love my son, but I'm bewildered by the women who seem to be attracted to him. He smells!

    You are very open and accepting to have welcomed her at Christmas and treated her as one of the family. You didn't judge her, or them, you simply accepted her. That's lovely. I hope I would be able to do the same.

    I know there are still issues, but he's working hard, living in a decent place, committed to a relationship which, although isn't perfect, he seems happy with - and, after all, what relationship is perfect? I'm not sure there's any such thing.

    I'm happy to hear that you sound so much calmer and that you are moving towards a better place in parallel with your son's unsteady journey to his own better place.

    We know that this is just a snapshot in time, that this is an update for now, that things may change again. But carpe diem! Let tomorrow take care of itself for now.
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  12. Childofmine

    Childofmine one day at a time

    Thanks to you all for your kind and wise replies.

    Here are some things I am continuing to think on, pray on and work to claim completely:

    1. I cannot know what is best for another person. Even if it seems 100 percent clear to me. That's because any action, decision, step on the path may be THE necessary step that person needs to take, to get to another better place.

    2. I cannot know how things will turn out. Even if it seems 100 percent clear to me. How could I possibly know who another person should be with, how it will all turn out and what is in another person's heart?

    3. People are messy, chaotic and complicated. There is no such thing as a person who completely has their act together. Some appear to, but when you look more closely, you find that they have "stuff" too. Our difficult children wear their stuff on the outside for all to see but they are just like everybody else. IT IS NEVER GOING TO BE PERFECT. I capitalize that because I have to continue to claim that truth---I used to think my difficult child would graduate from college, get a great, challenging, well-paying job, settle down with a wonderful girl, have 2.5 children...you get the picture. I truly expected that. Nothing less would suffice. Wow, was I dumb. People are who they are and people are so very human.

    4. Most of what happens with my own children is none of my business. They are both grown men---of legal age---and I have to let them go.

    5. Silence and waiting and quiet are my best friends. More happens inside me when I am able to do these things, and the space and distance that is created gives other people a chance to live their own lives without my interference. Most everything does not need action RIGHT NOW. This is a complete 180 from who I used to be---the Queen of Action.

    Life goes on. People do what they do. It is what it is. There can be peace without everything being perfect or even desirable. Who woulda thunk it? It's true.
  13. CrazyinVA

    CrazyinVA Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I so get this. I have learned to step back and observe my kids' choices from a bit of a distance, and to remind myself that their choices are theirs, not mine. It doesn't matter that such and such is not what I would do in their situation, or that I find it ridiculous.. I'm not them. I find such freedom (and peace) in the "not my business" attitude these days.

    I've also learned to sit back and wait instead of reacting .. even as little 24-48 hours can change the direction of a difficult child "crisis" significantly.

  14. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I get it too COM. We cannot know any of it. People are quite "messy, chaotic and complicated", you are so right about that.



    It takes us a long time to get there, but geez, once we do, life does shift into a whole different experience, doesn't it? ........Thankfully.