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