Ugh... I hate having to say no

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by LettingGo_AnchoredInHope, Jun 26, 2019.

  1. So my homeless daughter texted me today asking if I had a place for her to stay for the time being. Having her live with us is a toxic situation. I told her that I love her so much and this is her choice to be homeless. I offered to drive her to the local Rescue Mission where they can provide her with a roof over her head and food if she would like. She texted me back saying, “Nope. That is fine.”

    This is so heartbreaking knowing that yes, I do have an extra bed in my house, but no, I can’t support her in that way because it is not healthy for my marriage. Up until last week, she had not communicated with me for three months because she had cut me out of her life.

  2. New Leaf

    New Leaf Well-Known Member

    Hi LettingGo and welcome to our little corner of the web. I am sorry for your heartache and understand how difficult it is to have a daughter on the streets. I have two out there. The eldest stopped asking to come home, the middle asks when she is about to be released from jail. I had a particularly hard time this Christmas season as she was calling daily and talking about unconditional love and how she would end up on the streets again if she couldn’t come home. No was hard to say. But I did say it. Then after a time she quit asking. She found a sober home that would take her until she could get into rehab. That lasted half a day. By experience I know the same would have happened if she were here.
    “Nope. That is fine.” I hear the same thing and it translates like this for me. “Nope, I don’t want to go to a shelter, there are rules, I won’t follow rules.” I then remind myself of the many times we put our two up in our home and it was okay for a bit, then things went missing, they would be out til all hours, sleeping during the day while we worked, came home to street friends lounging about, the list goes on. Toxic situation is an appropriate term. It is an awful thing to have the chaos and drama up close and personal, not to mention the attitude of entitlement and complete lack of appreciation for the sacrifices we made to accommodate their needs. As I write this, there is a huge flashing neon sign in my brain——-NO-NO-NO!
    This is familiar to me, the no contact, cutting off, then contact. Played like a yo-yo. What I’m finding out is that Tornado will burn all of her bridges out there too. They have both basically replaced family with drugs and like minded addicts. Who wants to be around a bunch of old boring straight people? Unless of course they will put you up and allow you to walk all over them.
    One of my favorite sayings is “Love says no”
    “No, you may not have candy right before dinner, no you are not sleeping over a boys house, I don’t care if you are just friends, No you cannot speak that way to me, No, I will not allow you to use and abuse me or destroy the peace in my home.”
    I think deep down they know why. They know, but they will ask, just because.
    When I have a hard time saying no and that little mommy voice in my head starts to chide me, or come up with rescue solutions, I borrow strength from mentors like Maya Angelou “What you allow will continue.” Or my Dad who would have put up with none of it, NONE.
    Im glad you stuck to your guns, LettingGo. You have given your daughter a valuable lesson. Consequences.
    It’s not that you don’t love her, her using and abusing that love is unacceptable and she needs to understand that.
    In the meantime, keep working at building yourself up. The stress of dealing with wayward adult children can be heart wrenching and exhausting. I can slide down the rabbit hole without realizing it. It takes too much effort to pull myself out of that hole, so I work hard at steering clear of the edge. Every so often, I am drawn closer. It is a battle really, we are soldiers who need to prepare for whatever comes down the path. It is a hard, sad thing that our daughters choose their lifestyles, homeless and whatever comes along with that.
    It is a choice.
    That they would put it on us is horrid.
    We suffer enough.
    I’ll leave you with this. My dear hubs passed three years ago. My two were struggling with with him, I was the bad guy. Throughout struggling with illness and hospitalizations they continued as is. On his deathbed, Tornado whispered in his ear that she would get her sister off the streets, she ended up joining her. Our grown adult children will choose as they please. They have to decide what path to walk. I for one, don’t plan to be the rug they walk all over figuring things out. Not acceptable. You did the right thing saying no. It’s setting boundaries. Good job LettingGo, good job.
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  3. Thank you so very much Leafy! I really needed to hear these great points! Setting boundaries and not enabling is all new to me and probably why my difficult daughter is 29 and still making the choices that she is with no reality of the pain of consequences. I live in the desert where it is 115-120+ degrees in the summer so this is a heck of a time for her to CHOOSE to be homeless because she doesn't feel the need to work because the universe will provide for her. You are right and I have allowed her to treat me the way that I have for far too long. Thank you for giving me the strength that I needed today! I am going to put "Love says NO" as my phone wallpaper so that I remember that one!
  4. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    Hi I don't know what these are: she is a lightworker and starseed.
    How did your daughter end up homeless?

    There are similarities to our story. My mentally ill son is 30 and has been homeless off and on for 7 years. He is currently paying rent to live in a garden shed in somebody's yard a few hours from me. I have been wanting him to come home. But like you, it is hard for us to sustain living in any kind of a cooperative way. I do have a rental house where he can live. One issue we have had is his excessive marijuana use. There are other issues as well.

    My son has an obsessive interest in ideas that I consider bizarre, such as Illuminati. He believes over and over again that transformations (either catastrophic or wondrous) will occur, which will transform life as we know it.

    I have changed over the years on how I feel I should approach our situation. I was the one who insisted my son leave. He would not accept treatment. He would not work. He would not go to college. Or one other thing to help himself, except to lay around my house. (He had been working but quit his job.) I could not accept that I sustain and support this lifestyle.

    Over and over again I ask myself if I had options. If I did I still do not know what they were.

    Still, I believe that my son needed help. And still needs help. Which is why I bought the other house. I recognize that is not an option for most people.

    What I suggest is trying to get into some kind of communication with your daughter. Psychotherapy together, would be one idea. Suggesting she go to Mental Health. Meeting her for coffee on a regular basis. Or even suggesting that the two of you meet at a public place one time and seeing where that goes.

    The thing is, she knows on some level why she can't live at your house.

    If she is so ill, she needs to have a record of treatment so that she can successfully apply for SSI. My son receives SSI. It is his lifeline. I am not in love with it that he gets it, but it gives him options and a sense of independence and autonomy.

    These beliefs your daughter has (if they have no basis in reality) could be psychotic delusions. While treatable this is a symptom of a serious mental illness. I did not see mention of drug use. This could also be related to drug use.

    This is one thing that has given me pause: If we give safe harbor to our children that use drugs, especially if they are mentally ill and not seeking treatment, do we enable them to continue this dangerous situation?

    I am changing now with respect to my son. Because he does not use hard drugs, for one. He is not violent. I see him changing somewhat. He is more stable and seems a bit more motivated to keep it together. And suffering on the street just subjects him to unrelenting degradation. It does not motivate him to get better or to rise to meet his challenges in a better way. He just stays living in garden sheds, and he is victimized by people. This is unbearable for me. My son is not tough and he is not a predator. And I can't bear for him to be prey. And that it has come to this.

    I hope this has been helpful. I believe that sometimes are kids do need a hand. They may not be able to live with us, but there are other options, if we search for them and keep working towards them.

    Take care.
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    Last edited: Jun 28, 2019
  5. Thank you @Copabanana for sharing your experience with your son.

    My daughter was doing a lot of drinking (3 DUI’s before she was even 21), as well as drugs and daily marijuana in her late teens and most of her twenties. About a year and a half ago, my husband came home to find my oldest daughter sitting in our backyard in a trance. I came home from work to shattered glass covering my kitchen floor. She calls this experience a Kundalini Awakening. After this time, my daughter is very disrespectful to me and was treating me horribly in my own house. She was also released from her job because she was treating her boss disrespectful. This was about a year and a half ago. Things just got worse after that. I asked her to move out and she found her own place by renting a room from someone. Then about four months ago, she was in an accident where someone hit the side of her car and totaled her car. She decided at that time that she wanted to travel the world. She cut all of her family out of her life and said that she would find her souls family while traveling. She used her insurance money to fly to Australia, Bali and then back to Australia. Within two and a half months, she had just about run out of money. I had created a fake Instagram account in order to follow her journey so that I knew that she was okay. She had blocked me from all social media so creating this fake account was the only way that I could still know that she was alive. She would say horrible things about me and our family in these Instagram stories. She would go on and on about how she never has to work again because she is above that in the 5th Dimension and that she wasn’t a slave to work anymore. A week and a half ago, she did an Instagram story stating that she was having suicidal thoughts. When I shared this with my middle daughter, my middle daughter reached out to her since they had the best relationship through the years. She asked if my oldest daughter wanted to come back to the United States as a home vase until she could figure out what she wanted to do. My oldest daughter said yes, that she needed help and was ready to come back to the USA. I then reached out to my daughter and said that I was willing to pay for the one way ticket back home but that she would need to figure out how to get a job, a roof over her head and food. She is fully capable of work but says that her spirit guide tells her that she doesn’t ever have to work and that she can manifest the money. She landed in the USA this past Sunday and has been homeless ever since. Her homelessness is by choice. I hate it and wish that she would realize that she needs help. She doesn’t think that she has anything wrong so she won’t seek treatment. She has an attitude of entitlement and if she doesn’t get her way, she cuts you out of her life. It is almost like she is schizophrenic with her different attitudes and her thoughts swinging all over the place. For example, she posted a picture on her Instagram saying she was grateful to be coming back home and then three hours later, she posted another picture of the local airport saying “I’m back [email protected]€^s”

    She believes that she is healing the planet with her reiki and that black helicopters are the CIA following her because she is healing the planet. She also believes that “the greys” (aliens) visited her and took some of her “flowering” and then did some kind of surgery on her. She actually has a podcast where she shares much of her delusional thoughts but yet, at other times, her podcast seems normal and just that she is on some kind of spiritual journey.

    It is too toxic to have her live with us. She chooses to not get a job or use the various resources for people who are homeless. It has to be on her terms or nothing...
  6. New Leaf

    New Leaf Well-Known Member

    This should have said close with him, not struggling. They used him for his kindness and we ended up being at odds over this. He couldn’t let go. I had had enough.

    Try not to blame yourself my dear. It was and is still your daughters choice to behave as she does. We just don’t see it until it becomes a train wreck and we are in deep. The point is to learn and move on. Forgive yourself because what mother doesn’t want the best for their child at any age? The difference is, when we want it more than they do, it becomes a challenge for us to accept their choices.

    I don’t know why these kids grow up and feel this way. It is like mine reject conventional living, but they don’t mind living off of another’s hard work.

    You deserve way better and she needs to know this. You matter, LettingGo, the rest of your life matters. I have come to believe that by our standing up for ourselves and modeling self care, we are doing the most we can for our wayward adult children, leading by example. It is what we wish most for them, that they would expect better for their lives.

    Me too, LG I must do the same.
    Hang in there. You have been through the wringer. Take very good care of yourself.
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  7. JayPee

    JayPee Sending good vibes...


    Stay strong. Keep your "tool box" close by = Good friends, this forum, taking care of yourself, exercise and/or a good walk, good books to inspire and lift you up, prayer and mediation and re-applying boundaries constantly for your own well-being.

    Prayers going up!
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  8. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    Most of this is very like our situation.
    Nobody could or should tolerate this.
    Or this.
    My son is into this. I don't get it. What are they all reading the same garbage on the net?
    I don't understand this. Where would she get the money for a place if she chooses not to work? They don't like the shelters because there are rules. And also they are upfront with other people who are homeless and they do not want to face the reality that they are the same way.
    My son believes in this too. It makes me crazy. I refuse to speak or to be around him when he speaks about this topic. My son is mentally ill. I am wondering if your daughter is too. If she is, what she is doing is not rational and she cannot easily stop it without treatment. The problem is getting her to go to treatment because they do not necessarily recognize that they are ill.

    The issue here is that it all arrives at the same place. They are impossible to be around and to talk to. When you found glass all over your kitchen what in the world were you supposed to do? You could have called the police so that she could be evaluated by the mental health crisis team. If something happens again like that, that is what I would do. So that she begins to have a record of this behavior and these crisis events.

    The thing is she may not be able to work. I mean, hypothetically she could. If she was not antagonistic and disrespectful. Or put herself in trances, and use quantities of marijuana and alcohol or whatever....Or spout off about illuminati and reptiles (oh, that's my life, sorry) or believe the gold standard being put back will make us all rich....These kinds of beliefs and behaviors make it very hard to tolerate and conform to the expectations of a job.

    If she is mentally ill, what can you do as long as she is not tethered to reality one bit, hostile, disrespectful and destructive? There is an organization called NAMI that supports parents of mentally ill people. Al Anon, too, is helpful, especially when there have been drug and alcohol abuse.

    As parents we have a really, really hard time making boundaries with our children, and tolerating their falling into the lives that they either wish for or are capable of sustaining. I have had a hard time. My own son is no longer so hostile and aggressive. He is able to take in and comply with some of what I need (for example, consent to treatment for a chronic illness, at least sometimes).

    In my own experience this is a balancing act. Each of us differs as to how much we tolerate their being out there and vulnerable. But then even if we can't tolerate it, we can't tolerate either their abuse and horrible and strange behavior and attitudes. Which is to say we can't tolerate this nightmare. Until we can.

    That is why people here suggest practices like prayer and meditation and posting here and 12 step groups and psychotherapy. Because these things help us deal with the ongoing misery of a situation over which we have no control, and at the same time, live centered in our own lives (not only being the effect of them) with strength, heart and meaning and joy. It is hard, but we try.

    Take care.
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  9. She may very well have mental illness and I have started going to a local NAMI support group, but she does not think that she has any mental illness. My husband thinks that we should just explain to her that she should seek treatment, but I am not sure if this is the right way to go. She is very stubborn and cuts anyone out of her life who is not "supportive" of her "spiritual journey". She fully believes that she is working her way to "sovereignty".

    OMG! My daughter said that she saw lizards walking around as people in Australia!! Wow! Our kids must be reading the same websites :(

    Yes! My daily prayer and meditations are what keep me going each day! It is where I get my strength to face whatever comes my way. Al-Anon and this group is teaching me boundaries and the importance of not enabling my loved ones.

    Thank you so much for this!
  10. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    The denial of mental illness is part of some mental illness.

    I think you are right to tread lightly and not confront her. She has shown no openness to have dialog with you about any of this. This will only corner her and she will act out more. She is not rational and she is under the sway of a powerful delusion that my own son seems to share. This has got to play out.

    Little by little she will tire herself out enough to be open to you, in order to come in from the cold, so to speak (you're in a desert, right?) or she will get herself in a state where she will come up against the authorities or in mental health crisis. Or both. This is no solace to you, I know, but I think this is realistic.

    Meanwhile you cannot involve yourself with her if she is destructive, disrespectful and aggressive towards you, even if she is mentally ill. That's what I think.

    I think your instincts are good. I know how hard this is. I am glad you're here with us, and sorry you have to be. Meanwhile, I hope you keep posting. It helps. I have been here over four years. I seldom post threads anymore because I kind of know where I stand. It is not necessarily easier, but coming up against the reality of things, and accepting it, is what has made it more bearable to me. I have no control.
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  11. Albatross

    Albatross Well-Known Member

    Not to make light of a difficult situation, but Copa’s son and JPG’s daughter would have a lot to talk about —maybe you two should set them up :roflmao:
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  12. Crayola13

    Crayola13 Active Member

    There are jobs in reikei and in the things she believes, but it sounds like she has severe untreated mental illness. If she was more stable, she could train to be a reikei practitioner. I really hope she sees that she needs the medications and becomes more stable. I volunteer at the homeless shelter, and it's full of people who don't believe they have mental illness. The ones who aren't mentally ill don't see the need to live a conventional lifestyle.
  13. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    I want to add one thing. Sometimes I do think that my son is on a spiritual quest. He is trying to understand his reality and his life in terms that are quasi-spiritual or cosmological. A lot of it is nuts, I think, but as Crayola points out, there are aspects of your daughter's beliefs that are reality-based. It gives me solace (some at least) to think that my son is trying to work things out for himself. It is not only a manifestation of mental illness. It is a trying to come to grips. I see over time that some of his views are moderating and more reality based. As I study spirituality and meditate more and more we are coming together (a little bit) on how we approach the world.

    That said, I want to tell you that I think you are doing masterfully in an impossible situation. I hope you keep posting here. You have a lot to contribute on other threads too. It helps.
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  14. Tanya M

    Tanya M Living with an attitude of gratitude Staff Member

    Just because you have an extra bed does not mean you are obligated to let her use it. You are correct, it would not be healthy for your marriage, but it's also not healthy for you.

    I find this is a very common thing with our difficult adult children. When their lives are going the way they want we rarely, if ever hear from them. It's when they run out of money or other people's graciousness that they seek us out hoping we will give into their demands.

    Some of what you have described could very well be mental illness and I'm glad you have reached out to NAMI. It also may be drug induced. My son likes to use LSD because, as he claims, "it opens his mind". He has had hallucinations and also shares the idealism that he is "healing the planet", that he will never be a "slave to the man - work", he's a sovereign citizen and laws do not apply to him.
    Getting a good diagnosis of mental illness is not easy when drugs are involved.

    I've been at this a long time. My son is 37 and homeless / drifting / couch surfing, etc... I have accepted that this is what his life will be. I don't like it but it's his choice. I leave him to live his life and I move on to live my life.

    I know it's hard to go through this. I know how much heartache it causes. Be good to yourself by making sure you are taking time to do things that bring you joy.
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  15. I agree and I believe that being on a spiritual journey is important and shapes many of us as we seek truth and what our purpose is in this life. Some of what she shares is valid and reality-based. Others are not so much. For example, she said that the greys said that she is the most powerful being on the planet and that is why they visited her and did some surgery in exchange for some of her DNA.

    I am working on loving her where she is at in her journey and trying to support her as best as I can emotionally while having my healthy boundaries. I will keep posting and interacting with others posts as I do truly find value in us coming together to support each other. It does help being able to share and work through our feelings :)
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  16. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    OK. This is psychotic.

    I would question (in my mind, not necessarily by asking her) here what kinds of drugs she is using. I mean. It is not likely she would tell you, but it could be drug related. If not I would fear this could be the manifestation of a serious mental illness.

    The thing is, a number of us here have children who are mentally ill or brain damaged or both. It kind of amounts to the same thing, whether it is drugs or primarily illness, because when they are adults we have the control that they permit us (which is usually close to zero) and we are subject to their bad behavior until we stop allowing this.

    For those of us in our situation, mental illness, I think it is the hardest, because there is such a strong desire to protect, and also there is the extreme guilt that we should somehow protect them. But the long and short of it is we usually protect them best, by boundaries and the insistence that they treat us decently.

    I am softening lately. I am really not clear why.
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2019
  17. BusynMember

    BusynMember Active Member

    This to me sounds more like psychosis of some sort rather than a spiritual journey. It sounds like she believes she is part of God and not looking for a healrhy way to explain life. She believes she has been experimented on by aliens?

    My Kay has brought up many delusional ideas too. To me there is a difference between a spiritual journey and one which puts the person into the middle of importance in the universe. Like the difference in Christianity from searching for Jesus and thinking one is Jesus. I dont know if it is drug related or not. Nor can you do anything if she wont accept help.

    Kay believes she is healthy. As long as she thinks so, nothing will change. Your post reminded me of a time when she told us an alien tried to kidnap her, but she got away. Yep. It was in high school. Now she says she never said that. Maybe she forgot.

    You have a lot on your plate. I am sorry. I can relate. Im just not sure what it means.
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