In jail "again"

B&A

New Member
New to this community. My husband and I have been together over 40 years and raised two lovely children. Our daughter died of cancer 6 years ago at the age of 41. Our Son is 45 now and has been in and out of jail for dumb, non violent things his whole life. We have bailed him out, set him up, given him vehicles over the past several decades and want to draw the line here today by learning to have the strength and wisdom to completely detach from him going forward. He is back in jail now for "probation violation". Probation was given because of driving without a license (of which he now has back from our help). I feel ashamed that he is this old and still so irresponsible that he would end up back in jail due to some simple thing he was supposed to be responsible for and didn't follow thru. We have tried detaching so many times over the years but he is so manipulative of my heart I feel I have let him down by always picking him up. Anyway, don't mean to ramble but can't tell a 30 year story in a couple sentences. I have received 12 calls from the county prison today from him and have not taken any of them. I will not bail him out and my wish is to no longer be pushed in to giving him so much as one dime when he gets out all on his own (he has no money and has probably just lost another job). I will do my best to read and study "again" codependency and detachment forums. I am more ashamed of myself than of him. So am praying for strength to get thru what I need to do for the rest of his life. He is my only child now, but we do have 4 beautiful, wonderful, responsible, adult grandchildren. So we do have that blessing even though I feel I have surely lost both my children.
 

newstart

Well-Known Member
My heart and love go out to you B&A. First I am so sorry for the death of your daughter. I too am a bereaved parent losing my son at age 13 back in 1995, I cut my wayward daughter way too much slack, some of it was because I was so grieved by my son's death that I kept bailing her out of trouble and putting up with her nonsense. She even told people that since her brother died she can get me to do whatever she wanted. She took full advantage of my broken heart. My son's spirit visited me once and told me that a death date is a death date and no one or nothing can slow it down or speed it up. I needed to hear those words because I was always afraid I was going to lose her. I decided that the way our relationship was, was like an alive death and I was not doing her any favors or letting her grow by bailing her out constantly. I completely unhooked from her for 3 months when she was 28 because I could not take her crap any longer. Doing this was about as hard as burying my son. It was hard but I did it and in the three months she made some major changes, one thing that I noticed after the three months was her belligerence towards me was about gone and she worked at getting her life in better order. I believe to this day had I not cut her off completely I would still be treated horribly. Life is not easy with her now for sure but way better than before. I pray you have the strength to show your son your strength and force him to grow up. I know how hard it is but it will be best for you and for him.
 

ksm

Well-Known Member
In the Parent Emeritus forum, (where you posted this) is a post about detachment. Its always in the first 4 posts. I tried to read it every day for weeks. Best article ever! Keep reading and posting. Others will respond, too.

Also, have you ever attended A Anon meetings? Not sure if your son has addiction problems, but I think most people, who have to deal with difficult people, would find Al Anon very helpful in keeping healthy boundaries. Ksm
 

B&A

New Member
Thank you. I have read the detachment article which is very good and will reread it a lot. As far as I know has not used drugs and has not drank for Many years. He passes drug tests for never ending jobs he can't keep and I see no signs of alcohol use. He does however behave as if he were an addict in that he is very irresponsible, self consumed, unreliable and he has a hair trigger temper. I would like to give just two of hundreds of incidents as an example. He said he wanted us to give him one if our vehicles as it was "Not Fair" that we had three cars here with just me and my husband. When I advised him we would not ever be giving him another vehicle (been there and been burned more than once before) and he would need to figure out how to get one himself or use public transportation he became VERY angry. Last week he was here being "paid a fair wage" to put in a hardwood floor as we have told him he will never again be given money unless he works for it and work is complete before paid for. He picked up his Dads cup of coffee instead of his own (which is mostly sugar and cream and a small drop of coffee), my husband simply said "that's my coffee you picked up". He slammed the cup down and yelled in the most hateful voice " I'M SORRY I TOOK YOUR G*#@ D#$%&m COFFEE DAD "!!!!! and stormed out of the room. We are continually shocked and saddened by how disrespectful he us to us. The only time we see the sweet and smiling boy we raised is if we give him what he wants. So we are dealing with his rage at us now and he is back behind bars for violation of probation. Don't know particulars of why as we haven't seen or heard from him since he left here Sunday after floors complete. Except for the six or eight calls from the prison yesterday that I didn't answer. So now I pray for strength to be able to stand up to him when that moment comes and let him walk to the nearest bridge to sleep under because at age 45 he yet again has no job, no car, and no roof. All that said I must assure everyone that I do love my son more than anything.
 

BusynMember

Well-Known Member
I am in Nar Anon and my Sponsor is in a close relationship with somebody who has been clean 30 years. However she still goes to Nar Anon, a great free resource, because even clean addicts have certain behaviors that are the same as when they are.using and Nar Anon helps her with them. Please consider going or seeking a private therapist to help YOU live your best.life in spite if him. Many of us learn the tools to deal with it putting ourselves and our needs first. The truth is your son needs to want to change or he won't and you can't talk him into it at his age. I can't make my daughter do better either. She has to want to and seek help. Not possible for.us to get them.to.

I so know your pain and am sorry.ni send love, hugs and prayers.
 

B&A

New Member
Thank you. Yes I'll check in to area meetings. Did go many, many years ago and also to a tough love group when he was still a teen. Have also seen several therapists. Anyway, although I am familiar with the advise and tools I did lose touch with others as far as having a support group and took it on alone for too many years. That's my fault and I do need to get involved again. I'll be very honest here though, I had the same problem with a group I tried to be involved in after my daughter died. I had to stop being involved with the grief therapy group because hearing their stories broke my heart so badly I would leave crying feeling worse than when I went in. I don't know if this is normal or not to rather grieve and work thru problems alone by studying and reading all available to teach myself the tools to get by than to be involved and knowing the pain and feeling the pain of others on top of my own. I think I will try again to be in a support group for dealing with this son of mine.
 

B&A

New Member
Just took call from prison for the ridiculous fee. Just had my innards ripped out by my son when I said "no" to bailing him out. This is January and his court date is not scheduled until August. His justification for why I should bail him out are "he didn't know he took something that would cause him to fail their drug test" (yeah right), "he still has a job to go to if he could get out "now" (doubt that's true)", "he will pay me back right away" (never has before), if I don't get him out "I don't love him" What kind of Mom would "do this" to her son", "No, don't bother putting Dad on the phone, he "hates" me, he's the reason you won't help me", "if you don't bail me out I will never speak to you or see you again and you have lost your son - is that what you want Mom?" and best of all....."If you don't get me out of here "I'm Going to Kill Myself Tonight"". So staying strong enough to detach is a really, really hard and although I plan to not ever bail him out again as I have done off and on for past 30 years (since he was in his teens) I'm feeling pretty bad right now. I did find a online Nar Anon that I can join. Thanks for listening.
 
Oh you poor thing! Stay strong! My son is only 24 but I could imagine him saying things like that. He is also generally very 'clean' in terms of drugs etc but is very very manipulative. And that coffee thing is exactly him - always looking for a reason to storm out whilst uttering a dramatic statement. You have friends here and you know you're doing the right thing! Your son is a grown man, and when we say that about our twentysomethings I'm sure we feel a bit guilty - "but he's only young still!" but 45?? That's middle aged and he needs to figure life out for himself. I'm so glad you have your grandkids, live for them, focus on them!
 

overcome mom

Active Member
I know how hard that phone call can be. I have had them too many times to count. My son still tries to get me to bail him out but has stopped going so ballistic when I say no as I have followed through with not bailing him out for any reason. They say whatever they can to make you change your mind, upping the ante if you do not respond. Stick with it, he put himself in this position. He will probably calm down enough to call you for money to put on his books.
I am surprised that his court date is so far off, wondering if he just made this up? If you call the jail and tell them he is suicidal they will put him in a room by himself with basically nothing. I don't think he would want that if he is bluffing. (I agree with the outrageous cost of calls and commissary items. They make lot of money on people for the most part that don't have much.)
 

BusynMember

Well-Known Member
I feel terrible about your daughter too. She was young. I am so sorry. I lost a young son to cancer. I did not go to a grief group. I could barely get out of bed. It was different for me than my daughter. Although if I had forced myself to get grief help then I may have done better. My husband did go to a grief group and he was able to hold together better than me. But I did not go with him.

I guess that as sad as my daughter's story is, she is still alive so a Nar Anon group helps me rather than hurts. Although I do hear sad stories, Nar Anon is more about me than about Kay. The first step is that we acknowledge that we are powerless over our addict and that our life has become unmanageable. So the group is about the ways we can learn to cope with this fact....that we are powerless over another person, even if that is our beloved child. For me, a main took is God. There are many tools, not all religious.

I find Nar Anon to be a group filled with hope, at least for the parents.

So for me these issues were not the same. Not that one is worse than the other....they are both soul killing. Trust me. I know.

I hope and pray that you find help and relief. Much love.
 
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