Desperately in need of a shoulder

Wendy - posted on 10/30/2009 ( 31 moms have responded )

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It is not like me at all to reach out to strangers for help but I'm at my wits end. My youngest child has decided she's in love with a boy who has nothing but her ruin in mind. He encouraged her to move out of our house to be with him even though he was homeless at the time. As much as we didn't like him before she left, we felt she was an 'adult' and deserved the right to choose her own friends. We have adopted mentor status with all 3 kids - the two older ones still live at home while they attend college. We consider ourselves mostly roommates and act accordingly with some minor rules enforced. Before she left, we bought the youngest a car for HS graduation and banned boyfriend from our home at about the same time (didn't say anything about whether she could see him, but did request that we see her at least some part of the day - usually she gave us the 3am-6am time slot). In spite of this freedom, or maybe because of it, she felt controlled by us and spontaneously moved out one day when we were on our way to our first counseling appointment with the state MHMR office (under her insurance) after she had taken off for a wild ride in the car with no clue given us as to where she was going, when she'd be back and no concern over the fact that her insurance didn't cover her nationally.

There was a period of anger after she left, especially when her older sister moved into the empty room even though the youngest didn't give any signs at all of wanting to come back. We kept the car because the youngest didn't want to spend the money to get the title transferred into her name or to get a job to keep it running. After about a month, we were already making progress on building a new relationship on the side of her new life - having the youngest join us for family activities, etc. The boyfriend still wasn't invited - doesn't work, doesn't go to school, has no interest in supporting himself much less our daughter, we simply cannot accept him under those conditions and made this clear to her in the past. Since nothing on his part has changed, nothing on ours has changed either. The youngest also doesn't want to work, almost wants to go to school and is attending classes and has a different set of lies depending on which family member she's talking to. She's been talking with her grandmother, my mother, as a means of attempting to control me with the end goal being to have us support both her and her boyfriend I guess indefinitely. My mother drove me to a near total breakdown about 3 years ago and I am still recovering (no insurance means no counseling, no time off and no meds). We had to move to get away from it and I have no new friends here yet that I can turn to. The youngest has confided to my oldest that she is deliberately using this connection as a means of upsetting me to force me to do what she wants.

The other night, knowing the ban of the boyfriend was still in place, the youngest deliberately brought him into our house after setting up her older sister for the transportation. I asked her to remove him as soon as he stepped foot in the door and then drove the two of them to their place (they still don't have a car of their own but did talk some friends into giving them a room for a while). I didn't speak to the boy all the way back to their place, to which my daughter took offense, but I thought I was doing well not to yell at them about the profound lack of respect they had shown in this stunt. Two days later, the youngest called me for a ride to school, no apologies, no concern about my schedule, just an expectation that I should drop everything and take her in the middle of a ferocious storm. Predictably, we got in a fight. Then my mother called in support of my daughter, saying I have no right to expect my feelings or rules in my own home to be respected.

I have been crying since. My other two children and my husband say I should cut off communication with both youngest and mother for a while. I don't know if this is the right thing to do or not. My mother called twice, once my husband answered the phone and talked with her for a while and another time I was taking a nap and my husband turned off the answering machine so it wouldn't wake me and get me crying again. My youngest has texted me once saying she didn't want to stop talking with me. It took me two days to see straight enough to respond to her that I will always love her and nothing will change that. I haven't heard anything back and don't even know if she got the message.

I don't know what to do, I don't know if I've done the right thing, I don't understand the profound change that has come over my previously very honest, very open, very caring and very ambitious little girl. If anyone has experience or advice, I am desperate to hear it.

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April - posted on 10/31/2009

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I am so sorry for your pain. I had a similar situation with my son. He dated and lived with a girl for close to 5 years that none of us could stand. She was lazy, manipulative, sneaky, etc. All she did for a living was work as a stripper and only did that once in a while. While my son was with her, all they did was party and do drugs. He lost jobs and became a complete slob. He became an embarrassment to me. We banned his girlfriend from our property and told our son she was to be at no family functions. I went as far as to tell him that if he married her I would not be at the wedding. I told him that any time he was ready to get rid of her, he was welcome in our home. It took 5 years, but she is gone, he has a new girlfriend and a good job. I would suggest not initiating contact with your daughter. Only speak to her when she initiates it and never speak about her personal life. You have to let them make their own mistakes, as hard as that is. If she never learns from this then you have to turn your back. I know as mothers we are not wired that way, but your mental health has to be your priority. Good luck to you.

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Sandy - posted on 02/22/2010

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I am so sorry to hear about the issues with your daughter. I can say stand your ground. She has to learn and make her own mistakes and if you give in every time she says she really needs something then she wins and gets away with it. I fully agree with the journal, I have been keeping one for years. I can say that I feel I have raised 2 decent kids and they arent any major trouble. I do stand by you as to cutting off ties so to speak. I would leave the lines of communication open so she can contact you but refuse to get involved in her personal live. I stand behind him not being allowed in your home. The stress it causes is not worth it. I will pray for you and your daughter. Hang in there.

Rhonda - posted on 02/15/2010

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Oh my gosh you are living my life. I sometimes feel I am the only one out here with a daughter like I have. My daughter moved out the day she turned 18 with a guy that I knew was no good. I begged her on her way out the door not to go. I told her he would be the worse mistake she ever made and he was. I went through 5 years of that mess. He had a daughter from a previous relationship that made it even worse and he had custody of her. No legal job, no place to live besides his parents house. I think now it was to have a babysitter for his child. I took care of most of the little girls needs and wants, somebody had to and I adored her. His way to make money became selling drugs and then they did have a place of their own and stuff but still could not manage the parenting thing very well. It ended after she became addicted to heroin, in and out of rehab, she also had legal problems and now has felony charges that will follow her the rest of her life. I never let them live here... I would have taken her and the little girl in at any given time but not him and she would not come without him. I cannot begin to describe all the scenarios that played out almost daily. My health went downhill, I ended up losing my job due to all the stress. I thought if she could get away from him it would be okay, surely she has learned. Well they did split up and he is in prison but she did not learn anything. She is drug-free and will have been clean 3 years in March but she has found yet another loser and now has a baby with him. I ended up doing what I swore would never happen... they all live here, it was either that or his families house where they smoke dope all day so for my grandbabies sake here we are. He is unemployed, has been since she met him. Already has one son he doesn't support out there somewhere. He is 27 years old and acts like he is 12. The only perk is he does not do drugs. He has until March 15th to get a job or he is out. I have no advice, only sympathy and understanding and these wonderful words "you are not alone". Hang in there, one day I am hoping the answer will just come for both of us. One thing I do know that helps me is the serenity prayer and keep telling myself I did not raise her this way, she knows right from wrong and if she does not chose to use that knowledge there is nothing anyone can do. Mine has almost 70 tattoos on her little 5"2 130 pound frame. I HATE them and to be honest it was embarrassing at first. I have gotten to the point I don't see them when I look at her I just see my beautiful daughter that has not got a clue about life! Hang in there, distancing yourself sounds good. You can't worry about what you don't know. I did/do that quite often. They take us for granted. I hope I helped some at least.

Teresa - posted on 02/14/2010

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I am feeling your pain, It is like a nightmare that never ends. My daughter was dating a boy that didn't go to school, We were told he was home schooled, found out later he wasn't. He cheated on her twice, there were lies, fighting, etc. When she over dosed over him, We would not let her see him, She like hated us for it. I got her into council ling , She is still going, Doing so much better. Now seeing a boy that is great. my Mom lives in a apartment by us, Had to tell her it wasn't a concern of hers. I hope it works out for you all soon, Will remember you in my Prayers...

Linda - posted on 02/13/2010

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I agree with your husband. She is the youngest, and her attempts at manipulation sound typical. All I can say is, having been a substitute teacher, you have to always act like you're in control even when you don't feel you are. If you haven't had many ground rules in your household, now is the time to set some firm rules. You and your husband, together, should have a family meeting, deliver the non-negotiable rules, and advise your children that no violations will be tolerated. Change the locks on your house if you need to. She's an adult now and must suffer the consequences of her own actions. We will worry about our children until we die; if I had known that, I think I would have reconsidered being a parent.

I know it's hard; I have little contact with my 22 yr old son since he moved to Georgia to live with his dad, but I have to keep myself together for my marriage (this is the #1 priority for you and your children.) My stepdaughter is married but lives with another man and expects us to just accept her the way she is. We cannot; we are Christians. We speak to her and invite her for holidays, but the fact that she doesn't bring her live-in tells me that even she is ashamed. Your daughter and my stepdaughter know they are adults and do not have to obey us. They will have to decide they want to. I made a lot of bad decisions in my life when I was young, and my parents couldn't have changed anything. I had to change my mind myself.

Judy - posted on 02/12/2010

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I'm so sorry for your pain. It sounds like your mother and daughter are manipulating you and don't seem to have your best interests at heart. I would probably use tough love even though it would just about break my heart. They are both adults and need to live their own lives, as you do. You need to consider how this is affecting yourself and the rest of your family. Cut off contact until they can stop acting so selfishly. It's not worth your health. God bless you and your family.

Dana - posted on 02/10/2010

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If you want to keep your daughter, you are going to have to accept the boyfriend.

Christine - posted on 02/09/2010

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Honestly, sometimes no matter how painful, we have to let go and let our children make the mistakes and "hit bottom" if you will. It is sometimes the only way they will learn and realize you were trying to help them and not control them. I would have a conversation with her and let her know you love her and will always be there for her but you will not allow her to disrespect your rules and your home. Make sure you let her know that there is always a place for her if she decides she wants to come back home. Tell her why you do not feel the choices she is making are good ones.Ask her why she feels the decisions and actions she has been making are good ones. Let her know if she wants to move out and live with her boyfriend, then she has to take responsibility for herself e.g. her transportation, food, clothing etc as that is part of being on your own. Let her know will not play "mom" when it is convenient for her. Let her know that you only want her to have the life she deserves and the best for her and you do not agree with her decisions but if it is what she wants than you will not interfere.
I have been there, when they finally find themselves lost and alone, they will come home and when they do it is best to forgive and forget and help them make a new start. Never mention an "I told you so".
Christine

Liz - posted on 02/07/2010

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I am sorry you are going through this. My son put me through a similar situation a little while ago. He was so mean and disrespectful that my whole family, including myself, stopped talking to him. We had to let go to retain our own sanity. He has since met a new woman and married. This young lady is a very positive influence in his life. It is very difficult, but when family is destroying you, you must let go to protect yourself. I pray that eventually your daughter will come around and realize that the only true love in life comes from you. Best wishes. I hope to see that things get better for you.

Carol - posted on 02/02/2010

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so sorry to hear of all your problems. let her read what you just posted. i think you are doing the right thing. hang in there. things will get better.........
cb

Evelyn - posted on 01/29/2010

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Stay strong and determined. They have to respond for their decisions and deal with the consequences. Don't loose contact with her and don't aloud her to speak about her personal life. She has to respect your choices and decisions and you will do the same. Always let her now you are willing to help her, establishing alway your terms and remember this is part of growing up.

Linda - posted on 01/29/2010

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How is she able to text you? If you are paying for her phone, it's time to quit. I would try to get to know her boyfriend however. Maybe he would understand where you are coming from. Get to know him then treat him like a son, good or bad, he would definitely know my feelings. Good luck. I wish I had a way to make the hurt go away, so you wouldn't spend so much time crying. Then maybe you can face it head on.

Lois - posted on 01/06/2010

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Kidds need to find their own feet. She will at some point in time get tired of a boyfriend who isn't going anywhere.But it has to be her choice. As for your Mom,if all she is able to do is add to your stress ,and you are up to your neck in stressalready,then it's time to set some limets,tell her that she's not helping,and that you won't talk about it with her anymore. If she won't stop,hand up,walk away.Yes it's hard and sounds harsh,but you need some space ,some time and peace to breath in.

Jackie - posted on 12/30/2009

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Cut her off!!! She will eventually see sense and come back to you and your family......I have had much the same situation with my oldest daughter, she turned on us at the age of 16 and moved out for four years.. she has since come back, completed year 12 (in Australia) and while she is by no means perfect she does have times when she is almost pleasant to be around, Just give it time and you will have your daughter back, She will see that the guy is no good and come back to her family, Good luck and Hope you have a better year next year.

Michelle - posted on 12/30/2009

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thank you for that you have giving me hope for the future with my daughter

Wendy - posted on 12/30/2009

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Thank you to everyone who has responded to this post. I don't feel so all alone anymore even though you all are somewhere out there in cyber space rather than right in front of me. Between my mother and my daughter and her boyfriend, I think I was on the extreme edge of a total breakdown. With your kind words and shared experience, I felt I might have the strength to survive just one of them. I reduced contact with my mother to email except on holidays and that forced her to think more about what she was saying. Her accusations and attacks stopped and I was able to deal more appropriately with my own feelings in a journal which was extremely helpful and a suggestion in this panel. My daughter opted not to speak to me for several months, but through email my mother let me know that they were still talking every day by phone so I knew she was alive and still had contact with the family. When my daughter got kicked out of her apartment, sooner than I had expected actually, my mother flew down, collected her and took her back home with her, giving her an ultimatum. The current plan is that my daughter will live in a dorm room my father will provide and go to school for the spring semester and not have interaction with the boyfriend (nothing more than phone) for at least 6 weeks. It has been a bumpy ride for them this holiday season as they allowed the boyfriend to visit and my mom now has a much better idea of what I was dealing with even though her experience was tempered by a small time frame and new fear of what might happen if the kids don't follow the rules. Mom even apologized, something she very rarely does with any conviction. My daughter has talked to me a few times, she's being friendly right now because she wants me to pick up her furniture and other stuff at her apartment before it all gets thrown out. Its still a large guessing game as to how things will turn out, but I am feeling much more capable of dealing with things now than I did when I first wrote. I am glad to see that the post also seems to be helping other moms deal with these kinds of situations. I don't know what works, if anything, to get a kid back on track, but I have learned that talking with other moms, keeping a journal where you can pour all your tears and frustrations into (and read back to see where patterns and flawed logic occur) and focusing on real love (where both you and your child are respected by the other as full individuals with the right to make their own decisions) can do wonders to help you keep your sanity through the adversity. Even when my daughter doesn't want to recognize that my rights should be respected as much as hers, I can stand firm because I know she needs the example of how to love yourself even when it means crossing someone you love who is not behaving with love.

Triny - posted on 12/30/2009

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Michelle, it sounds like you really need someone to talk to. What a shame your daughter is treating you this way. It sounds like you are a good mom and love your daughter. Your daughter has some issues that perhaps you as a mom cannot help her with. She is so young - 19 years old and with a baby. She still has alot of growing up. All I can tell you is to be patient, keep showing your love. Although, you need to set ground rules and demand respect -you are after all her mother. Respect is only given when the other person has earned it. Good Luck. I too have a 19year old daughter. Relationships betweed daughters and mothers can sometimes be strained but at the end of the road it is the love and the bond you have for each that will keep it together. Good luck.

Michelle - posted on 12/30/2009

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hi i hope you are feeling a bit better i too am going through the same experience as you my 19 year old daughter has took her 16 month son and went to live at her boyfriends parents house. i was raising her son most of the time and now hardly get to see her or the baby. she gave up her friends family and college for him and took the baby out of playschool. although i dont think much of her boyfriend i havent stopped him coming to my home coz i want to see my daughter and grandson so badly but like your daughter she tells lies and makes out shes hard done by and that i would keep her here if she visited so she doesnt people told me to be harder on her and take away the power games and ive tried although its almost impossible it seems to get better resultsand more contact ive let her know that i love her and always will but will no longer beg i also have a 7 year old who is devastated by this so i hope it gets sorted soon. i am praying for you and me and hope we can both be strong. i too cry a lot of the time so dont feel weak for doing so good luck with it

Nedra - posted on 12/11/2009

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I have to tell you that I've been in two similar situations, once with my son and once when I myself was in a relationship with a man my family couldn't stand. The best thing I can tell you is that the more you fight against the relationship, the more you'll push her into his arms. Don't offer her assistance without offering the same for him. Every time you do that, you're showing her that you cannot accept him and that makes her believe that you're not accepting her decisions. Give her the freedoms to make her own decisions and she'll find her way out of it. We, as parents, don't have to agree with the choices our kids make, but it's our job to support them regardless. We do our best to raise them well, with honor and integrity, and we have to allow them the opportunity to make their own mistakes and learn from them. It's a difficult road and one I wouldn't wish on anyone, but you have to keep them near you so you can help when they fall. This will not end well for her, but with the ones who love her close, she'll have people to turn to when it all falls apart. I wish you the best in all of this, whatever you choose to do. Just remember that this is your child no matter what!

Carolyn - posted on 12/08/2009

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Sometimes it does help to just talk it out or write in this case. I do not know if what I feel about this will help? My opinion is that she needs to respect your wishes in your house, she needs to take responsibility for herself if she thinks she is old enough to leave. I would let her but not give her rides, help etc. I thought she was the one that wanted to be on her own with this guy. I would only offer food or shelter without the boy friend, you do not owe him anything. She needs a hard dose of reality. I would give her space as far as not allowing her to use you. This means no rides, no give me this or that, no to even having the boy on your property. It is your house for peace sake, if she wants him, she will have to adjust to what he can do for her. If that is nothing let her find that out on her own. It is a hard life to live with someone you love and watching her destruct herself and not even realize that she is doing it to herself. My prayers are with you and your other family members. But I think a dose of tough love is in order and let reality of true life set in. I do not think I could help her destroy herself. I would only help if she is hungry or ill and definatly not with him. If she wants him, he should be taking care of her. I know it has to be hard, I had a sister do that to my mom. After a couple of months she caught him cheating on her, he never held a job. She apologized to my mom and she moved back home. It was a growing up lesson and sometimes that is the only way. I will pray that she stays healthy and safe, until she finds her way home. Many Blessings this holiday season will be trying for you.

Triny - posted on 12/02/2009

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Gosh, I really feel bad for you. I have 3 young adult children and can't imagine not talking to them. The way I see it is that you daughter seems lost and perhaps confused. Maybe having her go to therapy will help. That could be a way for you to get her to understand that she is not making the right choices. You could go with her to therapy. Someone who is objective can sometimes help. For myself I would never give up on anyone of my children. I would do anything to stay in touch and make sure they are safe. My point is this child is yours and you need to try to help her as much as you can otherwise you will lose her. When it comes to your children - you are never the priorty. Good Luck from one mother to another.

Vicki - posted on 11/29/2009

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Wendy..............I raised 4 very hard headed, independent smart kids (3 girls and a boy). Some kids are move devious and determined to 'win' when it comes to the battle of the wills, and I think all 4 of mine were VERY difficult (on a scale of 1 to 10, they were all 10s). After having all this behind me (sort of, since they will always be my kids and they will continue to make mistakes as they learn, as we all do) I have come to this conclusion: If you have raised them right (taught them right from wrong, to be responsible, to work for what they want, they don't always get what they want and to respect authority, whether it is parents, teachers, the law.........) I believe that once they have reached the teenage years, they are either going to work within the rules or they will have to suffer the consequences, whatever they may be. I had a very controlling grandmother interferring with every move when I raised my girls. I tried remove her from their lives, but at the time, grandparents could take you to court to visitation and she did. If I had it to do again, I would have taken my family away from her control. I am now a grandparent and I believe and I think I have the Bible to back me on this one...........a grandparent should support the parents in raising their children. You are the parent. She already had her go at it, it is no longer her place to be involved at that level. She needs to butt out or deal with the consequences.....whatever YOU and your husband decide is best for you and your family. As for the kids, I think you have handled it brilliantly. You are not telling her who she can and cannot be with, but you are saying who cannot be in your home. She sounds like she doesn't have anything to loose by standing her ground and waiting you out, so you may have a while for this one to play itself out, but it will.......more quickly if grandmas opinion is squelched. I understand what it's like to not have insurance, but you are no good to yourself or anyone else if you don't take care of yourself. I was able to get support from a local church when I was indesperate need of counselling. There are also programs (eg: Steven Ministries) where trained individuals can meet with you regularly to talk about whatever you need to talk about. I personally did this and made a good friend in the process. There are community and church outreach programs that can help you with medications that you cannot afford right now. I don't want to scare you more, but I would bet that the dramatic change in your daughter is drug-related. She needs to see that her mom is willing and capable of dealing with this without loosing her mind..........and I know that can be a challenge. I have personally learned to let go of my children and trust that God will take care of them, like he has taken care of me and that my kids are as smart as I know they are and will figure this out in their own time....... My daughters are now grown and two of the three have children and can't go more than a few days without calling me to tell me the latest adventure in their lives. One of my daughters and my youngest son still live the party lifestyle, but both are gainfully employed and have their own homes and also stay in touch with me on a regular basis. I try not to focus on that part of their lives. They know I don't condone their choices, but they are adults and need to make their own choices.............and deal with their own consequences. I know that you have alread gotten some very good advice from someone else. There isn't anything that you can experience that someone hasn't already gone through.

Claire - posted on 11/29/2009

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I'm so sorry about your daughter! Like everyone has said you need to stand strong! It is not easy to stand up against your child but it is what you feel is best for her in the long run. Sometimes they need to fall flat on their face before they realize what they are doing is wrong, it is so hard to watch them fall but they need to learn from their own mistakes. God bless you!

Debra - posted on 11/22/2009

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Hi Wendy,

I just want to say that as a mother of 2 college teens that life can be pretty trying. I am sorry to read about what you're dealing with. I believe the decisions that you made were what you thought were best at the time that you made them. I have learned that I can trust God to help me with my teens. I have to be very honest with you, I know that I have keep my sanity, by praying for God's help. We are faced with so many decisions. Our children have peer pressure, we have peer pressure. It can be overwhelming. You do not have to handle this all on your own. Counseling may not be free, but talking to God is. There is no special way that you have to speak to Him. Just like you sat at your computer and opened up to us, you can do the same to Him. He will help you. I have been at my wits end with my teens. I have wanted to just walk away and not deal with it, but we love with a mother's heart. Walking away is not an option. We can physically away, but emotionally walking away is tough. That's why we need God's help. We do have to have tough love with our kids. They don't realize how much they need us, yet when they choose to disrespect and hurt us; we have to show tough love. It doesn't mean that we don't love them, it shows that we do love them. You are a great mother. God has equipped you to be. Have faith in Him. God loves you and wants to help you. He wants to help your daughter. God doesn't want your family divided so he will help you. I will pray for you and your family.

Becky - posted on 11/04/2009

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First let me say I feel for you and your situation. I to have struggled with my child's choice of a partner, thankfully not as destructive as the situation you've described. I refuse to let this situation put a divide in our family. I accept what I can control, (my home, my time etc) at the same time keep communication open. Our life's experiences tells us they are in for a fall. Unfortunately our children need to learn this for themselves. Try not to be judgmental and be sure your daughter knows that you are there for her, even when you don't agree. Our actions must match the words we use with our children. I've said a prayer for you. Have faith in the child you've raised, she'll get back on track. In the meantime look for an underlying reason for her straying off her normal path. May peace be with you

Kathy - posted on 11/03/2009

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I am sorry you are going through this. I have not experienced this kind of thing myself, but I do have two grown daughters. I agree with April from Oct. 31, let her live her life the way she wants. Don't allow her to bring her life into your house. Tell her you will respect her choices but she must do the same for you. Agree to disagree. There is no game to play if you refuse to play along.

Laurie - posted on 11/03/2009

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Dear Wendy,
Hello. I am glad that some of the experiences I have been through may be helpful for you. I saw your plea and because I seem to be the kind of person who likes to reach out to help others (it does make me feel good to help) I just simply could not sit by. Also because I had been in my situation and had the desparate feelings of 'have I been a bad parent' or 'what could we have done different' or 'why didn't we see this coming' or 'I just have NO one to talk to about this' and then when it became an obstacle between my husband and me (similar to you and your mother), I just felt so low and helpless at the time. At times,I felt like the world would never smile on me again. I just had to write to you and see if I could give you any reassurance or relief-(based on my experience of getting through the rough times), I hope you will be able to get through your tough times and that your daughter will one day realize a few things and be mature enough to reconcile with you.
I am glad the journal has helped. I know it was and continues to be a lifesaver for me!
I did want to say if you ever need someone to vent to or such just e-mail me (las1028owl@iowatelecom.net) and I'd be glad to help you anytime. We need to stick together, life is too short. Thanks for being brave enough to post in the first place and thank you so much for responding to my post. Remember you can get through this.
Laurie

Wendy - posted on 11/03/2009

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Thank you for your response Laurie. I have taken you up on your suggestion of a journal and that is helping a great deal. I don't have very many days logged in it yet, but each day is an accumulation of several writings made whenever I feel myself slipping. I have come to realize that even when I know the facts of the situation, I have been getting upset over the accusations that are being made against me despite the untruthfulness of them. Being able to look back through the facts each time and weed out any justifications on my part helps me understand that I really had no options in some cases and in other cases, the other options were undeniably worse. Almost all of my decisions so far have been based on fact and clearly understood requirements that my daughter simply has not wanted to meet. Although she has made up stories that place her in the position of victim and me as the wicked witch (I understand a natural and practically inevitable position) and my mother has elected to believe them, this doesn't make them true. I have looked for those free hotlines you mentioned, couldn't find any, but the journal is a gigantic help. Thank you!

Wendy - posted on 11/03/2009

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Thank you so much for your response. It helped me quite a lot to put things in perspective and to regain control of myself. I don't think I'm back at full equilibrium yet, but I at least have clear priorities. It was very kind of you to share your story with me to help me remember I am not the first mom to have to go through this.


 

Laurie - posted on 10/31/2009

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Wendy,

I am sorry to hear you are at your wits' end. I am not sure what to tell you other than you may have to show tough love for a bit until your youngest realizes what she's doing and/or what she's done. It sounds like she just needs to mature and this boyfriend as you know, is not helping her with that area.

I can relate somewhat with you although each family is different. My son, also the youngest is almost 19 and is in his first year of college. We had quite a time his senior year of high school and the summer before college. To make a long story short, he ended up moving up to college in the middle of the summer because my husband had reached his 'saturation point' so to speak and the two were just butting heads and egos all the time with me in the middle. I wanted to help my son but also be on my husband's 'team'. It was just awful and I too experienced times where I was at 'my wits's end' like you and spent time crying. To let you know, he has matured in many ways and is actually quite nice to be around now. Before he left home he was disrespectful, argumentative, not willing to follow our rules, not listening, doing whatever he wanted, whenever he wanted and on and on. So I think there is hope for your situation. I never wanted my son to leave under a bad situation or in anger but we all finally realized he had to do it because we all just couldn't take it any longer. I wonder if your daughter just needs to be on her own in order to understand that she can't make it without a job, money, education etc. Our son did leave our home for 6 days during high school (went to best friend's house) but on the 5th day we told him to bring the keys to the vehicle (ours) back and the next day when he had to somehow get himself to school called and asked could he come home. He realized that 1/ had no access to money, 2/ no vehicle to get around, 3/ no job, 4/ and his friends' parents were not going to allow him to stay there for very long or to help him be a runaway. I have no idea if this is anything like what you are going through but I do know you need to hang in there because it does get better. One thing that helped me was I just had to let it go and have faith that my son and husband would both figure things out and get on to the next phase. I had to turn my worries over to God and pray that He would help us get through it all. It gave me enough peace and strength to not cry all the time or be a basket case.

If you don't feel you can handle the stress and the problems, then you need to seek some help. I know you said you can't afford it but you need to find something. There are many free phone hot lines and/ or counseling or perhaps a minister or a really good friend. If you are truly feeling desparate than you do need to seek help. Do not let yourself have a breakdown over this. It is mostly just growing pains for everyone=it doesn't seem like it at the time but that is part of it. And if your mom is not helping you then maybe you do need to tell her that this is something that you, your daughter and your husband need to work out not her and your daughter against you. I have 2 daughters beside my son and I purposely did not get them very involved in the problems my husband and I were having with my son, their brother because it just creates more problems. They will want to give you their opinions but they may not know everything or have the correct outlooks because they are still teenagers or young adults themselves.

I did use one thing to help me with my sanity when things got really bad. I am type of person who needs to express things but do not like to burder or bother some people. I couldn't keep everything bottled up so I used my computer and set up a journal file. I gave my journal a person's name. When i was overwhelmed, I would pull up my journal file and sit privately and type it all out in the journal, my journal is Dear Jenny, and it helped me immensely. I got things off my chest but didn't have to be judged or lectured by anyone, I just let it all out and it helped me feel better. Later then I would read old entries and see how things had improved or not but could see the progression. I did not tell anyone about my journal. It was own private outlet for my confusion, anger, frustration etc. and it really helped!

If I was with you in person I would give you a big hug. I have no idea if this reply is helpful but i will pray that it will be and pray for a good resolution to your problems.

Very sincerely,

Laurie S.

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