Desperate Mom needing advise with adult daughter of 22 with Borderline (Borderline (BPD))

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by Desperate_Mom, Jul 23, 2019.

  1. Desperate_Mom

    Desperate_Mom New Member

    I am a desperate single mom of a 22 year year old adult daughter with Borderline (BPD). She is in denial, has been for therapy when she was cutting herself and hospitalized a few times but discharged herself. She is currently going off all medications for her bipolar which I cannot stop as in South Africa you have no say once the child turns 18. I am desperate for help and advise. She lies to me all the time and has sold all her belongings just to buy smokes and sometimes alcohol. She said she needs to survive if I can't buy her smokes. Which I have actually been but now find myself in financial debt due to all her demands and giving her money to go out. I wish I knew how to cope with her and what to do. Can anyone advise me please? She is my life and all I want is for her to be happy.
  2. BusynMember

    BusynMember Well-Known Member

    I read a book called "Stop Walking on Eggshells" that I got off Amazon. I think my daughter is borderline too. She wont get diagnosed and uses pot as therapy. She wont use anything else. She is married to a loser and has my grandson who I fear will be in trouble. Not a good situation for him.

    Now if this were me, and at one time this was me, I told Kay she can never live with us again. She had run off to marry and has never been allowed back. But to assauge our guilt, my husband and I paid for her homes and aparrtments because she would not work and her husband was and is not ambitious. I was afraid they would become homeless. It was my biggest fear.

    I am sorry we paid for them. They are in their 30s and wont talk to us now. We are almost broke from paying for their lack of ambition and we no longer pay anything and they hate us. But they need to grow up, no matter where that takes them or if they will. If they need to be homeless, God will watch over them.

    My grandson has many people willing to house him. My daughter and.Mr. Worthless have nobody left. They could become homeless. But my husband and I are in our 60s with illnesses. If Kay lived here, her attitude alone would kill us. And I have other kids who would be furious at her,and may cause added trouble with her. No more.

    Borderline is horrible. I try to block out Kay's cutting and stealing and multiple serious car accidents and never taking blame. I had to decide, with my husband, to focus on our lives and give Kay to God for Him to care for. God is a comfort to us. I know not everyone believes but we do.

    We are doing better now. Kay is not the focus of our lives for the first time ever. I read a book called The Gifts of Acceptance by Daniel A. Miller. I ordered this from Amazon too. I am a big reader. This book has changed the way I see every aspect of life. I carry it around in my car and purse and have the most helpful passages highlighted and bookmarked. I also find solace at church. Find what works for you. Find a place of peace and comfort. It may be smart to make your daughter leave. Yes, its hard . Unthinkable at first. Are you in therapy to help you cope?

    Keep posting. I received much help here. Be well.
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  3. Desperate_Mom

    Desperate_Mom New Member


    Thanks for your reply and sharing your story. I wish I could kick her out but my biggest fear is what will happen to her. She has no one - I raised her on my own, her dad doesn't want anything to do with her. She is very good at manipulating me when she wants something. I don't have the cash for therapy at the moment for myself. But you right I should focus on myself for once and find my happy place. I recently got divorced from a guy a married very quickly but he was like my daughter and between the two of them was super stressed being in the middle and in the end choice her. I just wish she would find a job, get on her feet and get your life in order. xx
  4. Acacia

    Acacia Active Member

    I am sorry for the heartache and worry you are experiencing. We all want our children to be safe and happy. My adult daughter started exhibiting signs of borderline about age 20.

    As Busy says, borderline is horrible, both for the person experiencing it and for the person on the receiving end.. I've seen it all: cutting, substance abuse, rages, domestic violence. Now at 38 she refuses to have contact with me. If I did not give her money, a place to stay, etc., etc. she wanted nothing to do with me. Contact with her was harming my mental and physical health.

    You say, "She is my life." No matter how much it hurts, she must want her own life and recovery, and it is your job to love yourself enough to take care of yourself. That is not selfish; it is self-preservation.

    Keep posting.
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  5. Nomad

    Nomad Well-Known Member

    Somehow I think you need to get yourself to the place that you personally don’t feel so desperate.
    True, it’s a very difficult situation.
    Do you have any support for yourself?
    Consider setting up some important boundaries. What is most important to you?
    No more lies?
    That she take prescribed medication?
    Get help for yourself if at all possible as this is extraordinarily difficult.
    It will be ok, but you need some support and strength.
  6. Desperate_Mom

    Desperate_Mom New Member

    Thanks all for the advise. You right I need to look after myself first and the only kind of support I currently have is on forums as people experiencing the same as me or had in the past seem to understand more than friends and family as they just say thank goodness I am not you. The first thing I need to do is set boundaries on lying to me and emotionally abusing me and disrespecting me. And at the same time not just focus on her but myself too.
  7. Tanya M

    Tanya M Living with an attitude of gratitude Staff Member

    Welcome! I'm glad you found us here. I'm so sorry for what you are going through.
    I understand that you love your daughter deeply but it's imperative that we, as the parents do not define our own lives by our children. Your life is so much more than just your daughter. It's very easy to slip into the role of "child's mom". It is so important to make sure you are doing things for yourself. Getting involved with groups or activities that are just for you.
    You will never be able to change your daughter or force her to seek therapy. What I can tell you is that enabling her behavior will only make things worse in the long run. Trust me on this, if money and enabling could solve the problem of a difficult adult child, I would have solved my sons problems ten of thousands of dollars ago.

    Have you reached out to NAMI? If not, I would suggest doing so. They can offer you some direction.
    Here's the link

    Again, I'm glad you are here with us. You are not alone in this. Keep reading and posting.

  8. strangeworld

    strangeworld Member

    I'm so sorry you are going through this. I have a daughter that exhibits most of the symptoms of Borderline (BPD) and she herself said she believes she has it. She had her "first" psychiatry appointment today, not really her first but first in many years. It can be a nightmare when they rage. It's all about her. She is refusing to grow up. She's living in our home and we set the bar so low it is basically as long as you don't rage at us you can live here. We witnessed her raging at her boyfriend the other day then running after him begging him to stay. She had obviously been drinking. Anyway, I'm not trying to make this post about me...sorry about that. Just wanted you to know you ate not alone. Borderline (BPD) is treatable and manageable if they want to help themselves. I'm really struggling with liking my daughter these days. Everything about her just makes me sad and then I feel guilty for those feelings. There's no effort to move forward on her part. If I had not made the psychiatric appointment it would not have happened. She was obnoxious today in the car on the way there and when we arrived. She makes me feel depressed being around her. I realize I don't have the loving relationship other mothers have with their daughters and I am experiencing what I feel is grief over it. I know it's only a matter of time before she will be asked to.leave unless a miracle happens and she actually decides to leave on her own. She has another physical illness that requires stability and twice weekly injections so I want her to allow her to live with us during this time. It's so hard knowing what the right thing to do is when mental health is involved.
  9. Desperate_Mom

    Desperate_Mom New Member

    Hi, thank you for sharing your story about your daughter, yes I know exactly how you feeling about her. I have the same feelings about mine which is quite sad. But I have come to realize it's all about her and she doesn't care about anyone else. How old is your daughter? Mine is going off her medications and believes she is not depressed anymore. She doesn't want to go to therapy which her doctor suggest. I can't force her being 22. I can't kick her out either as she has no one to go and her dad is not interested at all in her. After her last episode of selling things, which I have now asked the shop to not buy anything from her again she just expects me to get over myself as she put it last night. I have decided whether I can do it or not is another story that I am going to focus on myself now and find out what makes me happy. I actually met a guy and married him but she managed to destroy that too where he made me choice between her and him so divorced him. Although I think he was very much like her so was really stuck in the middle with two liars, similar personalities draining me. Are you married and have your husband's support? Anyway you are not alone either - I am here if you ever need to vent about her - we can relate. All the best.
  10. Desperate_Mom

    Desperate_Mom New Member

    Thanks for your message and advise. Yes, you are right I need to find out what makes me happy which right now i have no idea. Just been through a hectic divorce where he was just like my daughter, demanded my attention, full of liars and similar personality to her. Although I met him and married him quickly all in a space of 3 years. Now it's time for ME. I just find it so hard to stop enabling as she threatens me and then cuts herself and then i have huge medical bills. What I have done is told her she will go to a government hospital if she cuts herself again and I have also told her that I cannot afford to support her smoking habits as it's making me broke and being single I actually cannot afford it. So i told her she can get the cheap ones 4 a week and a little petrol until she gets a job and can get her own brand. I also told her to stop asking for money everday - I just need to be firm, she is very good at manipulating me.
  11. Tanya M

    Tanya M Living with an attitude of gratitude Staff Member

    Threats are a very common form of manipulation. The manipulator is counting on your emotions of fear so that you will do what they want.
    You mention that you have medical bills because of her cutting herself. Why would the bills be yours if your daughter is 22? I understand if she is still on your insurance and if that's the case, you might consider taking her off of your insurance. She should be eligible for government insurance.

    I think you have made a really good start here. Setting clear and firm boundaries will benefit you both. You are also sending a message to her that you will no longer allow yourself to be manipulate. I will caution you here, when we stop enabling our adult children, they will sometimes ramp things up in hopes that they can gain control again. Be prepared!!

    One of the hardest things I had to do with my son was to accept my very worst fear. When we live in fear of "what could happen" we do not live in the present time. My very worst fear was that my son could die and I would never know it. Once I accepted this, that yes, it really could happen. I was able to start moving out of the "fear" mode.

    There is a saying about living in the FOG - which stands for Fear, Obligation, Guilt
    Once we start to understand that is what we have been doing, we can then start to work our way out of the FOG.

    I encourage you to find something that will bring you joy. What have you always wanted to do?
    Step out of your comfort zone, it' okay. Maybe sign up for one of those one night painting classes.
    Go to a museum and spend a few hours just looking art.

    This is not an easy journey but I and many others are proof that you can survive having a difficult adult child and can live a happy and fulfilled life.
  12. Desperate_Mom

    Desperate_Mom New Member

    Thanks for your reply, I must say it is encouraging to hear your story and thoughts, gives me hope. You ask what I like to do - I actually have no idea what that is. I did meet a guy 3 years ago and married him pretty quickly only to realize he was just as bad as my daughter and was so stressed out and the decision to divorce him was very stressful last year. But I know now that I did the right thing. Maybe I should try a painting class or go out in nature and see what it is that I enjoy doing. Would have to switch my phone off so my daughter doesn't phone me ten times while I am out as this is what she used to do even when I was married. I feel positive and I am generally a positive strong woman, just at times I feel hopeless. Your story sounds so hectic. I hope mine does not get worse as you say one's biggest fear is they loose control and then she commits suicide. But you right her actions are her actions and I can't be responsible for anything she does and I hope to to get out of the FOG living as you call it. Thanks again for the reply and advise.
  13. Desperate_Mom

    Desperate_Mom New Member

    Yes she is still on my medical aid. It's not very good to have no medical aid in South Africa. The government hospitals are not great at all over here.
  14. BusynMember

    BusynMember Well-Known Member

    We just started blocking lour daughter from our phone. Not that she calls us. She punishes us by not letnting us see or hear about our grandson. But we don't want to risk hearing from her. She will only ask for more money. That is all she ever does. We used to do it. Now we don't and it's still hard to say no.

    My daughtrr Kay almost caused my husband her father and I to divorce. Please dont let your daughter interfer with your meeting a nice man. Few if any will put up with daughteors like ours. We do have to often choose to put them out or be alone. I believe we deserve to put ourselves first once our kids turn majority age.

    Kay was also a cutter.

    Be well.
  15. Crayola13

    Crayola13 Active Member

    What has she done from age 18-22? Anything meaningful, productive? How has she spent her time? Working, school, etc.?
  16. BusynMember

    BusynMember Well-Known Member

    I am not sure how to force kids like this to do anything other than what they want to do. I have read up on borderline. I believe Kay has it plus bipolar. If she hadnt married Lee, she would still not have worked or done anything. She doesn't even now.

    Kay did not respond to any sort of discipline. By her teens she swore at us and did what she wanted to do. Sometimes you really have no control. And, yes, I feel guilty that we could not control our own child. Or I used to. Borderlines are hard to work with and she refused therapy.

    The only thing we could do was make her leave and she saw it coming so first she ran off and married Lee. Of course we paid for them for years, but you all know that story.
  17. Desperate_Mom

    Desperate_Mom New Member


    She begged me to send her to college at the age of 16 and take her out of school as she was not coping. She did hairdressing for a year, didn't pass. Then did make up and a massage course which she managed to pass. Still no job then asked me to study child care through correspondonse which she has just completed. She stays at home and watches TV and she did aupair for a few months but that has ended now as the lady could not pay her.
  18. Desperate_Mom

    Desperate_Mom New Member


    Yes it is difficult to force them to do anything. It's hard and I can understand why you supported Kay for so long as I am in the process now. I feel sorry for her most of the time as she is all alone, has no friends and i can understand why but don't dare tell her. She is depressed and feeling sorry for herself and useless at everything. I can't make her go and get a job but I am really going to try and not give way to all her demands this month - she is very good and being sweet when she wants something then can swear and slam doors when she doesn't get her way at the same time. Crazy. I have another child too a son who lives in Dubai and is 28 and if he knew all that went on would absolutely freak out at her and probable disown her and kick her at the house. I have told her if she doesn't stop I am getting her brother involved as she idolizes him.

    Thanks for comments.

  19. JayPee

    JayPee Sending good vibes...

    You know something I have only recently figured out "for myself" and it's possible others told me but I'm only grasping it now? It's that I can slowly detach meaning for instance I've detached from paying rent and deposits, I've detached from providing food (which was huge for me), I've detached from even meeting up to buy my oldest son an ice coffee and bagel (not because I'm heartless but because the more I see him the more it pains me and the more I want to interject my help and rescue). These things didn't happen all at once and have progressed over the last couple of years. I've slipped back sometimes and probably will still do occasionally but I just realized that I have been making progress. I thought that detaching meant it all had to be done in one grand slam gesture but for me it doesn't. Each time I reach a milestone I feel stronger. Maybe this is an approach you might consider with your daugher. Baby steps and with each baby step, if we stick to what we say, we set a boundary or as recently described to me as " a line of peace" (for myself). Boundary always sounds to me like I'm building "the wall". There's still a lot of ways I have to detach (not paying gas..a big one) but I think that the less enthralled I am in every little and big problem my sons have the stronger I become because I stop placing all my attention on them. The minute I slip back into feeling their feelings is when I need to climb back out of the rabbit hole fast!

    I cannot force my sons to get a job. Gosh they've done that but then it doesn't last more than a hot minute and I'm back in my little worry hole. I've realized that getting a job and keeping a job is really just part of the big picture and if they don't want to make the changes they need to for themselves we can all be back on the merry-go-round in no time and quite honestly I've been on that ride for way to long!

    I hope you can begin to take tiny baby steps of setting your "lines of peace". Don't be hard on yourself if you slip back...just pick yourself off and remember we are all human and be gentle with yourself. Gosh, if we don't love ourselves, who will?
  20. Crayola13

    Crayola13 Active Member

    She's had quite a bit of job training. I don't blame her for not wanting to be an an pair again because she didn't get paid. But, you paid for the training, so I think she needs to put her skills to use. If cosmetology wasn't the right thing, which you also paid for, it's not like she doesn't have other training. The smoking would present a major problem if she wants to be an an pair again. Bottom line: You did the right thing by providing her with job training so that she could become a successful, productive adult. She has job skills that are in demand.The smoking itself would be enough to make me throw my kid out.