Daughter 24 stole from me

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by Devasted Mom, Feb 21, 2016.

  1. Sister's Keeper

    Sister's Keeper Active Member

    I don't want this to sound harsh, please don't take it in that vein, but, perhaps, you are looking for something she doesn't have. Answers.

    Your daughter is early in the therapy process, she may not, yet, know why she did what she did. From what you have said she seems to be remorseful for her actions and she seems to be trying to make amends.

    Playing devil's advocate, she may be embarrassed and ashamed of her own actions. I realize you feel hurt and betrayed, that is only natural, but what are your plans going forward in your relationship with her?

    If your plan is to rebuild a relationship with her, and granted it may never be able to be the same relationship you had, violated trust is a very hard thing to overcome, you are going to need to find a way to move past this incident. Is it possible for you to attend therapy sessions with her, or on your own, to help you cope with your feelings toward her?

    If your plan is to detach from her, and I don't get that feeling in your posts, then maybe you need some individual therapy to help you do that. It is very difficult to do, and I would imagine even more so with a child. With my sister, it is a very superficial relationship at this point, and it has to be that way, and she is aware of it. I send occasional cards, pics of the kids, but emotionally, I have to be very distant, but my sister is a drug addict and in prison, and she knows that the only way that we can ever try to rebuild a relationship is if she has an extended period and a real commitment to sobriety.

    With your daughter (and I am not sure how to word this so I don't sound horrible) it sounds more like you are punishing her rather than detaching from her. Maybe she doesn't, yet, have answers for you about why she did what she did, maybe she is too ashamed to talk about it. Sometimes the shopping thing is related to bipolar mania, but a lot of times it is more related to trying to fill an emotional void in her life with material things.
     
  2. GoingNorth

    GoingNorth Crazy Cat Lady

    The thing with personality disorder treatment is that you are asking the person to literally change their personality, which is VERY hard for anyone to do.

    Also, you have no idea how or if the new "healthy personality" will want anything to do with you.

    I had this happen when I lived in Germany. A "friend" with borderline underwent a grueling treatment program for a year.

    I called her after she graduated and asked her if she'd like to go out for dinner.

    She informed that she'd learned in therapy that I was toxic, and that she never wanted to see or hear from me again!

    Last I heard, she is successful in life, is married, and a grandma. Not things that would've happened without treatment.

    I am happy she succeeded and is living a good life, but I do wish she'd told me WHY I was toxic as that's the first and only time I've ever been told that.
     
  3. Devasted Mom

    Devasted Mom Member

    What I don't understand though is it a real addiction, but when you get caught you stop. I hope the person who has dealt with this sees this and can englighten me. I do hear and understand what you are saying but absorbing it is what I cannot seem to do
     
  4. Devasted Mom

    Devasted Mom Member

    I don't plan to detach from her I love her more than life, however I do feel as if I want to punish her and I am ashamed to say that. I am trying to move forward but I find it is very hard to do. I am not badgering her I am going along with the program but I feel like I am faking it.what troubles me most is we have always had a very close realtionship yet her choice was to choose me to steal and deceive. I would definitely consider therapy ,she has just started so I don't want to overwhelm her with my feelings. This bipolar thing is what the therapist is saying but I don't understand this. You just develop it out of the clear blue. It just turns on and off???? These questions consume me. A child I never had any trouble with and now 24 years old and now this!!!!
     
  5. Devasted Mom

    Devasted Mom Member

    She is trying to continue the realtionship as it was before yet I feel like how is that at all possible to just act as if nothing happen. Trusting her seems like something I will never have for her and that kills me
     
  6. Devasted Mom

    Devasted Mom Member

    The emotional void is another thing I have a problem with. We are not rich but she has never done without private schools, cars, dance cheerleading always part of the popular groups. Seemingly happy. Now in a realtionship with a successful young man who works hard and has his own business. What is the void!!!
     
  7. Sister's Keeper

    Sister's Keeper Active Member

    Those are things, people can have all sorts of things and money and still not be happy. As an example, Robin Williams was a very rich man, beloved by millions, with a very successful career and he killed himself. Look at rich and famous celebrities who still continue to shoplift when they are able to buy anything they want. Maybe there are life circumstances or events you don't know about, maybe it is just something inside of her.

    Truthfully, no one, maybe not even your daughter, know why she did what she did. I am very sure that very, very difficult to deal with such a breach of trust, especially when you were very close.

    I think, though, if you want to rebuild your relationship you probably need to communicate directly with her and work on that relationship. There is no way that you can move past this if you don't. You say you aren't badgering her, but, indirectly, you are. By cancelling a whole holiday celebration you are sending quite a message.

    Have you communicated your feelings directly to her? It's okay not to have answers. It's okay to tell her that you are very angry and that you are having trouble moving past this and you don't know how to handle it or what to do. Your feelings are all very, very justified.

    The thing with mental illness is it is a spectrum. Some people are very, very affected, some people more minimally. It may be an issue where she is minimally affected, in that the signs are subtle (like overspending) and easy to overlook or that she is able to hide it. Most major mental illnesses also manifest themselves in early adulthood, so it may be something that has happened in that last few years. Or it may not be bipolar at all, it may be something else entirely.
     
  8. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Therapists cannot diagnose mental illness. If she is indeed bi-polar - yes, you develop it "out of the blue", usually somewhere between puberty and age 25. Therapy can help bi-polar, but therapy doesn't solve the issue. People with bi-polar normally need medication, typically for the rest of their life.
     
  9. GoingNorth

    GoingNorth Crazy Cat Lady

    With bipolar, one usually needs to be stabilized on a good medication regimen before one can really benefit from therapy. That's certainly been my personal experience.
     
  10. Devasted Mom

    Devasted Mom Member

    I have communicated my feelings to her yet I don't want to be reptative repeating the same thing over and over again. I actually annoy myself. As far as not berating her yes you are 100 percent I guess I am indirectly doing it. My older daughter lives in my house and it just seemed to be too much pressure for all to endure with company here. And our extended family does not know about any of this so that was another added pressure. She was always the type that came and discussed her feelings. So this was like a building came done and crushed me into a million pieces. I do believe she is ashamed but I am still infuriated. I understand everything you are saying yet I still can't seem to forward. I am going to go to therapy on my own to see if that helps me
     
  11. Devasted Mom

    Devasted Mom Member

    Her next session is going to be the discussion about what medication they will be recommending for her
     
  12. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    If it is bi-polar that she is dealing with, then the situation she put you in wasn't really a "choice". She wasn't in her right mind.

    If she is accepting of the diagnosis, and is prepared to be medications compliant, AND work the therapy, she can actually have a good life.

    Just my opinion here, but if she is bi-polar, and medications and therapy compliant, that should go a long ways from her side to building back on the relationship. You may need help to wrap your own head around the issues... which is fine.
     
  13. Sister's Keeper

    Sister's Keeper Active Member

    I think that is a good idea. I completely understand the anger, it was a huge violation of your trust, especially from someone that you are very close to. Trust me, been there, done that.

    I'm really not trying to sound harsh here, truly. I also understand not trying to fake it in front of a large audience. My perception is a little off, my family, other than immediate, is small, so I didn't really think about the holiday involving a large, extended family. I apologize.
     
  14. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    Well, I have written before several times, that I am one mother who has had feelings of wanting to lash out at my child. I have been criticized for it here but I will say it again: Sometimes people want to hurt people they love. Nobody is saying this is Good Parenting 101.

    Your daughter stole, if I remember, 20k from you. You are supposed to feel grateful? The only way through this I think is to be real with yourself. You are doing that.
    One of the criteria for bipolar is spree-like behavior. This can involve compulsive shopping, gambling etc. There is an agitation that propels behavior, with the absence of the normal stops that you would think she would feel.

    But the thing is, you were the victim of a crime. Even if her behavior was propelled by an illness, who can fault you for feeling victimized? Because you were. I do not think that the feelings associated with a trauma like this easily go away. They can resolve themselves with time but it is a process. That is why I believe it is a good thing to be honest about and to forgive yourself for what you feel, and to give yourself the space you need, without judgment.
     
  15. Sister's Keeper

    Sister's Keeper Active Member

    I absolutely understand being angry and wanting to punish/hurt her because she has hurt you. It's totally natural. I would think something were wrong with you if you weren't angry. I think the people who say they aren't, or haven't been angry with their loved ones who have betrayed them aren't being 100% honest.

    What I was trying to say, and maybe I wasn't clear, is that if you want to salvage/rebuild a relationship with your daughter you are going to have to learn to put aside, or somehow manage, this anger. Hanging on to it is just going to build a barrier between the two of you.
     
  16. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    I agree one hundred percent. I think there is a natural progression of things. It takes time. To have the expectation of yourself too early is both unfair to yourself, and not helpful.

    The anger will fade. I am sure of it. You love your daughter.

    I do not think it would be the right thing for her to prematurely set aside anger that you righteously feel. Even if she did this thing as part of a mental illness, she is responsible nonetheless. Society would hold her responsible. You chose to not press charges. I cannot think that any other person other than a parent, would not have pressed charges.

    Are you not entitled for now to feel anger? Of course you are.

    There are people with bipolar illness that choose not to take their medicine to control the mania because they like the way it feels. It feels good to them. They choose to not be medication compliant.

    While your daughter will do what she wants to do, and what you do or do not do, in the main is not the the controlling factor. I would think that she is best served by your not normalizing this. By that I mean, to act as if it was something that you can and should get over just like that. Because she needs to take this seriously. She could have been on her way to prison.

    She committed a crime. This is serious. Again, this is just my take but I think you are asking something that is both extremely difficult, and actually, borderline irresponsible if you ask yourself to not be angry at her.

    This just happened. It is not, like, one year. You will work this through. Do not be hard on yourself. Remember. You did not do this thing. You were the victim. In one fell swoop life as you knew it was overturned--and you lost a great deal of money. And your daughter was responsible. Allow yourself to grieve.
     
  17. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    Robin Williams it turned out had a degenerative brain disease, I believe. His suicide may well have been rationally thought through, not necessarily a product of mentally disordered thinking in the main.

    What I am trying to say here is that usually after all is said and done, things come out in the wash. It is not necessarily that a diagnosis clarifies things, but people by their own choices and actions and attitudes themselves clarify what were the causes.

    But this is done over time and cannot be anticipated.

    Your daughter may have latitude in deciding how she lives her life. Despite whatever diagnosis she may receive. People on this board and in life and especially in the mental health professions will bandy about diagnoses. They do not necessarily know. It takes time to sort it all out. Your daughter will do this by her conduct. She will show you how much control she has and how much responsibility she will take.

    There are reasons for things, yes. But sometimes it takes choosing differently. That is where parents come in. I believe very strongly that adult children can still learn from the guidance of their parents, even if it is subtle and not directly communicated.

    Some parents on this board strongly disagree with me, I am aware. So you will have an assortment of viewpoints from which to see your situation. A good thing.
     
  18. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    None of us, I think, go on anything other than our own experiences. We can only have our own point of view, which for me, is usually my gut, that which I have learned through hard-fought, hard-taught experience. This is highly personal and subjective. Not book knowledge.

    To me, you do not ever have to apologize for what you say from this place in you. For myself, i would always welcome support from that space. Because it is a true thing.

    I am new at this. I came to the board less than a year ago. I had never heard of detaching.

    I trusted one person, whose voice made sense to me. This Mom will hear in our experience a voice or several that feels right. Speaking from our truth can only be a good thing. That is what I think.
     
  19. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    Devasted Mom, you have been through so much. And it keeps unfolding. Of course there is a huge part of you that must be frightened. What is wrong with her? How will your oldest daughter and the rest of the family get through this and how will they get through this? How can this elephant in the living room be incorporated into family life? Will it ever be?

    Have you thought about Al Anon? Either as an adjunct to therapy or an alternative? At one juncture of my life I went to a 12 step group. It was extremely helpful, actually more so than therapy had been, because it was focused on this one issue.
     
  20. ForeverSpring

    ForeverSpring Well-Known Member

    I dont know what she has or doesnt have. As one who has been through the mental health system, I know that ten psychiatrists can come up with ten different diagnosis for one person. There are no blood tests. The only way to be sure of bipolar, the REAL bipolar, is if the person gets psychotic mania and then horrible depression. I have a diagnosis of mood disorder not otherwise specified and that makes more sense than bipolar anything.

    Unless one is psychotic, one can control what they do. Thats me on the soap box after being in the mental health system since 23. I spent ten weeks in the hospital then. I am 62/and still mindful of my mrntal health and pretty well educated about mental health.

    About your relationship with your daughter, take it slow. On your time. She did a terrible thing but it counts for something if she makes amends. From where I sit, it is best not to vent by name calling. Yes, sometimes we want to, but then we may say something impossible for the other to forget.If you need to vent in my opinion best to have a therapist for that. It is about what you can live with. How you want those around you to perceive you. It is not hard for an angry person to sound vindicative and crazy, and I feel, as family matrioch, I want the legacy of a strong person.it has not always been easy, but I dont rant at my kids and all four turned out to be hard working, good people. JMO.


    I hope you can come to some understanding and that your daughter keeps paying you bsck. Big hugs. Take what you like from all of us and leave the rest. Me included ;)