And so it goes

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by New Leaf, Oct 17, 2019.

  1. New Leaf

    New Leaf Well-Known Member

    Oh Copa, I hope you feel better. Migraines are awful. Thank you for responding although you weren’t feeling well.

    I may as well have just copied your entire post, it is the way I feel about my two. Off the reservation. While Rain showered, her boyfriend admitted that she was still using meth, but “Not near as much as she used to.”
    Sorry, I don’t think there is any amount of that stuff you could use and be normal.

    Our welfare does not factor in. If they weren’t my kids, I would not have anything to do with them. There, I wrote it.
    As I retyped those words “our welfare does not factor in” It is a reminder of this brokenness in our relationship, our blood ties us together, sweet memories of their childhood, but for now, contact is a danger.

    Agreed. 100 percent.

    It is painful to see my daughters morph into the characters they have become. Physically and mentally. I barely recognize them. And yet, I do.

    That is the hard part Copa, knowing that I can’t fix someone who does not want to be fixed. My daughters do not want to stop using meth. They continue risky behaviors.

    I have too much at stake here with responsibilities for my grands. My eldest said in a matter of fact tone, “Tutu, you have to put them on the side of your mind, they are adults. They are going to do what they are going to do.”
    Thank you Copa. I hope you are feeling better.
    Love and hugs
    New Leaf
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  2. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    “Tutu, you have to put them on the side of your mind, they are adults. They are going to do what they are going to do.” My quote thing is not working--again.

    Your grandchild is very wise. Life has made this so.

    I want to add this: that Rain has made a couple of good choices. Leaving that abusive guy and decreasing meth use if true, are steps in the right direction. There is no reason she cannot continue making better choices. She made these positive steps without your help. She does not need your help to keep doing so.
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2019
  3. New Leaf

    New Leaf Well-Known Member

    That was actually my eldest grandson who said that. Who just happens to now be in the psychiatric emergency ward for the latest explosive episode wherein he chased his brother out of the house and threatened to “put him in the ground and that will end all of my problems.” Police were called and he was taken in. Psychiatrist just called and said that he is remorseful and wants to come home. That it would be in his opinion detrimental to admit him being that he would be locked up in a children’s psychiatric ward with patients who were much worse with schizophrenia and suicidal ideation.
    My head is spinning.
    I’m going to pick him up.
    I must be out of my mind.
  4. ksm

    ksm Well-Known Member

    [QUOTE="New Leaf, post: 753008, member: ... That it would be in his opinion detrimental to admit him being that he would be locked up in a children’s psychiatric ward with patients who were much worse with schizophrenia and suicidal ideation.
    My head is spinning. I’m going to pick him up. I must be out of my mind.[/QUOTE]

    I'm so sorry your grands are going thru this. And, also, the effect that this has to have on you. Be sure that you have some help to cope with this. Are there extra benefits the children qualify for that would put an extra adult in the history me for a few hours after school or on weekends?

    Will be thinking of you. Ksm
  5. BusynMember

    BusynMember Well-Known Member

    New Leaf,bI am forever flabbergadted by the insight and wisdom I read here.

    You nailed it.

    The Twilight Zone. Perfect! Or upside down land where everything most consider normal makes no sense to them. Brains ravaged by horrible self care and drugs, even if it's pot every single day, and we don't know that it is just pot. We can't know. Can a damaged brain be fixed? I don't know. How many years of abuse can happen before the brain is actually damaged,?

    New Leaf, good for you for setting boundaries for your daughter. The grands don't need this. You are such a good person.

    Of late I have read some very jarring posts. They are not pretty. They do not indicate that our kids will do better some day and I don't believe most can or will. Kay.....nope.

    But the grandchildren can.

    The bold truth actually helps me, not hurts me. I don't feel alone in the hopeless Twilight Zone. I have friends right here who actually get where I am at and where Kay is at.

    Although I feel I am too old to raise my grandson, my daughter Kay and her Twilight Zone husband have been evicted. They will squat a while. Meanwhile my responsible daughter Amy is all set to go for custody of Jaden. She is driving to see the lawyer tomorrow, all this behind Kay's back. It is planned already. I pray for Jaden since we can't save Kay.

    None of us our family can stomach the little guy, who may have autism, living in an old van in California which is Plan B for Kay. Kay and Lee already have police incidents for domestic violence and who knows what else.

    We are in soldier mode.

    Thanks for your post, New Leaf.
  6. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    My son does not threaten me or anybody else, but he makes suicide threats. I thought they largely had stopped, but no. When he feared I would kick him out (again) a week ago he said he'd hang himself. He said he had already tried it and it doesn't hurt. Later, he said he only meant that if I had finally had my fill of him, and no longer had hope, rejected him totally, and no longer wanted him in my life, that he would want to die.

    Last year in the same kind of circumstance I had the police bring him to psychiatric emergency and he was admitted, voluntarily. I had told him to leave, he ran into the garage for an electrical cord, and ran to the park with it.

    My son is almost twice the age of your grandson. But he has a history of trauma too. So do I.

    I think that people like us, children like your grandson and I, and those who grew up like us, have dark places in them without words. Their emotions when they are triggered, terrify them. They are impossible to mediate or to manage in their intensity. (But there are ways to learn to calm oneself.) Any language that we use when we are triggered (to ourselves or others) can be so violent, so extreme, so cruel, that the consequences are even worse.

    There was no intent there. Your grandson is not murderous. He is suffering. You don't need me to tell you this.

    You are not out of your mind. Although you are in a situation where mind alone cannot handle it. Mind is equipped to handle routine, repetitive, orderly events--and to label them, categorize and to respond to them. We are in situations where mind is over its head. Our children's minds can't handle what they experience, either.

    I know the children are in therapy. I am wondering if they are in therapy with people who have been trained to deal with extreme childhood trauma.

    You had to do what you did. Your grandson needs a strong boundary. Not that he would necessarily hurt his brother. But he has to know that there are stops. Until he is able to learn to build an internal refuge, instead of turning to violent ideation or action, in response to overwhelm. Until he learns those stops for himself, you will have to be that. And you were.

    Is there equine-assisted therapy by you? There isn't by me, but I wish there was. Horses, assisted by trained therapists, help children and adults learn to calm and center and settle themselves.

    Whether or not we can have hope for our adult children, that they will ever change, has been a central axis here on this forum. Some parents need to feel their children are hopeless. It's a coping mechanism. Nobody knows what will come in the future, over which we have no control. We come here needing to disabuse ourselves from the idea that anything that we do or don't do will have any effect.

    There is lots of hope for Rain. But that hope come's from her.

    I don't know how closely grandson's meltdown came after her visit, but I wonder if they are connected. You wrote that you thought that Rain being around loving family would have a positive effect on her. I wonder if the opposite happened. If the children were triggered by being around Rain and her boyfriend, were reminded of their parents and their lives before they had you. If so, clearly they can't handle it.
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2019
  7. BusynMember

    BusynMember Well-Known Member

    I mean no disrespect nor do I think you are wrong. But keeping hope alive is all so a coping mechanism and not a bad one.

    We can all change our minds or be pleasantly surprised. So far I don't see Kay changing. If she does, I will be over the moon.

    But there is no.reason for me to think of her with hope now. She is willing to put my grandson at risk. I see no hope for her, but a lot for my grandson. And he is our focus. Kay is an adult. Jaden is a child. And she cares not at all about the welfare of her son.
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    Last edited: Oct 27, 2019
  8. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    Busy: "keeping hope alive is all so a coping mechanism." My quote thing is not working.

    Yes. My very strong value is that every parent here who chooses to hope, is supported to do so, not discouraged. I have no right to take hope away.

    Some parents who have posted here, have felt it their duty and right to decide whether hope was warranted or not, for other parents to have about their adult child. That feels very bad, to me. I'm not saying it is bad, I'm saying it feels so, to me. It is the thing that makes me want to leave this forum, that and gratuitous cruelty and judgment.

    I have been in an ongoing conversation with myself whether or not it is the right thing for me to remain on this forum. Sometimes I feel as if I am using my body/mind to stand in the way so that others are not hurt. If this is so, this is very wrong of me to do to myself, and to others. It recreates my mission and role in my family, of a rescuer and a protector, which was a fantasy, and led to sadness and pain, for myself and my family. And it is wrong and dangerous to others, whose business it is to develop their own ability to protect themselves by discerning how they feel and what they want. And developing the resources and voice to do so.

    Recent threads have served to help me with this ongoing internal conversation about whether it is time to go, or to pull back even more than I have.

    In my family I was the one who as an adult decided things were hopeless. That relationships were hopeless. That I lacked the strength and will to tolerate triangulation, self-indulgence, addiction, and sadism. I decided I could not protect myself by my own will, alone. And I doubted the will and the potential of others to want to and to commit to change. And I retreated based upon those beliefs. This cost me a great deal.

    I was probably right, looked at objectively, but that doesn't mean it was the right thing to do. My parents and sister were my beloveds, as is my son. As are your own children.

    Still, I don't know how to keep open to the possibility of love and healing when the objective circumstance is indifference to the effects on others, of cruelty, twistedness, irresponsibility, and self-indulgence. But I have committed myself to learn.

    I think that for me this is my life work. To try to be open-hearted and safe in the face of the possibility (or reality) of danger and harm and rejection. I realize that this flies in the face of how many of you here on this forum think and feel. I realize I am the odd man out.

    This forum, where almost all of us, have been so harmed by our love, and wanting to love, may no longer be the place for me to be. Because despite my woundedness, I want to be open to love and to loving, my son and everybody else. I yearn to love. I don't want to close down. Not to anybody. Most of all to myself.
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    Last edited: Oct 27, 2019
  9. New Leaf

    New Leaf Well-Known Member

    Ksm, thank you so much for your insight. It is hard. I feel a failure at times. I do have help from my youngest daughter Hoku, the kids look up to her and do not cross lines when she is around. I am thinking that after this incident, my grandson will qualify for more intense therapy with home visits. We shall see. It is hard for me to get a break. Friends who have offered assistance have disappeared off the radar. My well children have busy lives of their own.

    I know for sure with my two that it is way more than pot. This has been ongoing for over a decade. It’s horrible but I have come to the point where I know nothing I do will stop the madness.

    Thank you Busy. I have thought about the negative affect being around my two has on all of us. So, no more notions of family connection, at least until there is evidence of change. Big change, like rehab. I have to focus on my grands.

    I am so sorry for your aching heart Busy. I know where you are at because I have
    been there. Many, many times. Watching the terrible choices my daughter made, trying desperately to get help for my grands while they slipped between the cracks in the system. I am glad Amy is ready to step in. My feeling is the same for my daughter, she is an adult making bad choices, my grands got stuck in the quicksand of their parents addiction. I am hoping the resiliency that helped them survive that, will kick in and help them process the trauma and have productive lives.
    I’m so sorry Copa, that is so hard to go through.

    How awful.Thats the hard part in all of this craziness, that the burden be put back on you. You have tried for so many years to help him.

    I am sorry Copa, I did not know.

    It is blind rage. That is what is so frightening. I can see it coming. I try to stay calm, but it is hard because of his size.

    I know Copa, thank you for this. But, that is also what is so frightening. This was an ordeal that built up then exploded into an attack on his brother. His brother did nothing to provoke it. I saw the idea click right before me. It was a complete about face from rage that he could not go off on his own to “I am going to get my brother.” Thankfully brother bolted out of the house and hid. He knew enough not to try and stand up to the madness. We were running around the house trying to stop my eldest, yelling for brother to stay away and hide, waiting for the police to come as eldest continued to scream for his brother to come out so he could “put him in the ground.” I honestly don’t know what would have happened if he found him. That there was no intent, yes, but he was so far gone, like a spooked horse, he could have done some very real damage without even feeling it.

    I talked for awhile with nurses, emergency doctor, then psychiatrist. They remarked at how calm and charming my grandson was. This did not surprise me, because he has some amount of control to switch off. To beguile. So what is at work here? The psychiatrist mentioned that he felt remorse, but he has never apologized for his explosions. In fact, he makes jokes about it. I picked him up and hugged him and told him I loved him. Flat effect. Silence in the car. My thinking was that I would not try to discuss anything until there is a cooling off period. To let him start the conversation. I will wait a bit this morning to see what happens.

    I do know that the kids have bonded somewhat with their therapists. We have a new social worker who ordered evaluations. I have called for results but received no info yet. I think after this incident that CWS is requesting more intense in home therapy. I will advocate for that.

    Thank you Copa. I had to be that. It’s hard, because the policeman was able to get him to calm down. They wanted to leave him at home. I pushed for them to take him in. For his sake and ours. His tirades are escalating. He will not be allowed another chance without severe consequences. That’s what CWS expressed. He will be removed and go to a group home. I don’t want this to happen, but he cannot endanger this household.

    I was just looking that up this week. I don’t know if therapists are involved. I will look into it further.


    I wondered that myself. Contact has a way of leaving
    one feeling depleted, frustrated. That was poor thinking on my part. Clearly it cannot happen again.
    This is where I am at Busy as far as focus on my grands.
    But, I still hold hope in my heart for my two, I just need to regroup and let go of any thought that I can be a catalyst for change. It has to be initiated through them. They are toxic for my grands, they have suffered enough in their young lives.
    Thank you so much sisters for your kindness and wisdom.
    Day by day.
  10. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    New Leaf: The psychiatrist mentioned that he felt remorse, but he has never apologized for his explosions. My quote thing is STILL not working.

    I think your grandson must compartmentalize what happens. If he connected with the place with the extreme rage, he would have to connect with the extreme pain and fear, and beneath that, the nothing space.

    My understanding of Equine assisted therapy is that the providers are not necessarily licensed therapists (but can be), but they are trained and certified to be therapeutic providers in this context. In equine assisted therapy the horses are the therapists.

    I would also look for child trauma therapists which is an emerging field. If you want to private message me, I could try to google your area and we can together try to find this kind of resource. (I've been looking but haven't found anybody/anywhere that seems to rise above the rest.)

    In California there is a growing focus on what are called ACE's. Adverse Childhood Experiences. There is a whole lot on the internet about this. The practitioners that come from this perspective work to help children deal with the effects of trauma and to build not just coping but resiliency. There is the growing sense that all of us hold trauma in our bodies. And this might be another reason that grandson does not speak of his outbursts. His pain is living in him outside of words.

    Your grandchildren experienced lots of ACE's. Online there are simple quizzes that we can take (for us or our kids) that let us know how critical our exposure has been to traumatizing events in childhood. It's eye opening.
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2019
  11. New Leaf

    New Leaf Well-Known Member

    Hi Copa, I am notorious for Googling (it’s my university for now) and discovered the research on ACEs awhile back. My grands are at a 9. Hubs was too, which gave me a lot of insight into why he was the way he was. I always felt he had so much bottled up inside. It is upsetting to know the effect on brain growth with trauma, considering how high on the scale my grands are. But, the good news is that the plasticity of the brain means there is an opportunity to create new connections that help the brain function and calm down the constant stress traumatic events create. Going from 0-10 does not even apply as high ACE scores mean kids are operating on high anxiety and stress mode as a baseline. Knowing this has helped me switch from a consequence driven discipline to more positive affirmation to help build resilience. It is hard for an old fashioned mind set to see through the behaviors as cry’s for help, to find different strategies to work towards healing. I am so very grateful for your research and help. I have ordered some books through Amazon and am pouring over them and highlighting key points to help me remember that calm and steady is the course. Hard to apply in the heat of things but I am trying. Like you, I am thinking that perhaps this is my life’s journey, to find and redefine my own self, by helping my grands.
    Much love
  12. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    Dear New Leaf (Now, my quote thing is working??!!)

    Can you give me a few references, that you are finding especially useful? I am pretty new at this. Thank you.
  13. BusynMember

    BusynMember Well-Known Member

    Copa you and I don't have the power to give hope or lack of it to other people. We don't have happy endings right now ourselves. I hope we do one day. The only person I feel hope from is RN. She is my one person who can give me a bit of hope, but we will think the way we think.

    I never discouraged hope if it is there. I wouldn't.

    I am at "it would be nice." I don't call that negative. But I don't believe I have power to influence the other strong, smart mothers and I am posting how I feel.

    Some have hope. Some don't. Some are in the middle. I have nothing happy to share right now and I can't fake hope that I don't feel. I want to express how I feel. That is, I understand, what we do here.

    These are our stories, which we tell from our hearts. And that is why we are here. To share our stories and individual feelings.

    I have God. He can and does help me through this. Kay has no God. She won't ask for help. She doesn't seem to want to change. I will stick with " it would be nice." Because it WOULD be nice. Hope is not something I feel right now. I trust in the intelligence of the other mothers here. And I am humble about my own power to influence others.

    Please, Moms, be honest. If you have ever lost hope because of me, please tell me. You may PM me as well. That is NOT my intention!

    Now as they say in Nar Anon....I pass.
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2019
  14. New Leaf

    New Leaf Well-Known Member

    Yay my quote thingee does that with me too. The books I ordered are geared towards foster care- I am reading “Wounded Children Healing Homes” Jayne E. Schooler

    “Reclaiming Hope” Marcy Pusey

    I am searching for books on building resiliency in traumatized children. Ordinary discipline does not work with these kids, grounding, time outs, etc. it was hard to wrap my head around it at first, but I am putting it in the perspective of abused mistreated animals. They don’t heal from harshness. They have triggers too, fast movement, sounds, hunger. It takes a lot of love and trust building to get through the protective bubble they have created to survive. Routine and affirmation, positive experiences. The same holds for traumatized children. They have a hard time letting their guard down and trusting. They also have a lot of shame and low self esteem. So, it will be a journey, perhaps into my own past as well.
    Off to get some yard work done, then food shopping. These guys chug almost two gallons of milk a day!
  15. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    I am happy for RN. But this is defining hope by a result. By something outside of oneself, over which one has no control. To think this way means that only those parents who have a child who recovers and works, can have hope. I don't agree with this.

    I think it is possible for me, and for others to be hopeful, independent of the result. To have an attitude of hope, to cultivate it, independent of outside events or outcomes. This is what I speak about.
    You are exactly right. This is one of the things we do here. But feelings are not facts. All I am urging is that I try to guard against expressing opinions about the present and future realities of peoples' situations based upon my own feelings. Our own situations (either how we feel, how we think and what we do) at the end of the day are ours alone. Of course we generalize based upon our own situations. All of us do that. Of course there are others that feel pain in the same way we do. And they can join with us in commiserating in a collective voice. But I believe the responsible thing for me is to recognize that what we I say and do based upon hurt and anger, has effects, to myself and others, and to take this into account.

    But I agree with you. This forum is a place to work all of this through. This is an open forum. A forum for open expression.

    As I said, It seems I am the odd man out, here. It seems like my own purpose here may have transitioned and may no longer fit here. It may no longer be appropriate that I post here, at least in terms of discussions such as this.
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2019
  16. BusynMember

    BusynMember Well-Known Member

    Copa... I explained.

    I rest my case.

    I think you are wonderful but I think I post fine. If anyone feels hopeless due to me, I will be told. i asked to be told. You can not tell me what to post and I would never tell you either.

    If you keep attacking my well meaning posts, bourne of my own pain, I will ignore your posts and what a shame. You add so much.

    I don't wish to be attacked by the What You Can Post and Not Post Police. Sorry, but that will not happen unless from an administrator.

    Thanks for your opinion. God bless you.
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2019
  17. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    Is there one of the two that really speaks to you, and/or is giving you resources to understand and respond?
    I resonate with this myself. Thank you for this, New Leaf.
  18. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    This is a public forum. It means we can opine and also respond. This is a conversation. So that each of us can have voice.
  19. New Leaf

    New Leaf Well-Known Member

    I like the Wounded children book, it has charts and examples, and viewpoints from co authors. It is a simple read, not too technical with medical jargon, which I can tolerate, but not now. The simpler the better.
    I am finding by studying about trauma that I am able to delve into my past and understand a bit more about myself. What makes me tick, what are my triggers, why I am so hard on myself at times, self deprecating and judgmental. That is not healthy, but it ties into what so experienced as a child.
  20. BusynMember

    BusynMember Well-Known Member

    As can I.

    Hereafter you will not be on my screen. I do not like to argue. I feel the need to ignore you and I only tell you this do you don't waste time posting to me. I won't see the words if you do.

    I suspect your comments to me are more about yourself than any other mothers.

    I do find you smart but overbearing too. I chose not to be a part of it.

    God bless you.