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I don't know how much more I can handle

Old 06-20-2011, 09:39 AM
  # 21 (permalink)  
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Please realize, this has nothing to do with your parenting skills. We all raise our children to the best of our ability. Hopefully we give them the tools to make the right choice when they are in testing situations. We have to let go of our pride, and realize it has nothing to do with us, it has to do with them, their choices.

You have received calls from the college, and from the police. This is way over the top of any "normal" behaviors. Yes, the first time children leave the safety of our home, they may act out, they may not.

When they are putting themselves in harms way by abusing their bodies with alcohol, acting out, and being warned that this is all unacceptable behavior, as parents we either must set boundaries that we will be able to follow thru on.

By her actions she has given up certain rights., you have to define those rights. Wether it is a curfew, not going back to school, etc...and you have to enforce them.

She is testing you right now...it is your choice to pass her, or fail her.
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Old 06-20-2011, 09:39 AM
  # 22 (permalink)  
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I have posted about my daughter before & this is obviously just my experience, but here it goes.

My 19 yr old daughter flunked out of college. Too much partying not enough grades. She was a high school honor student. She moved back home. Slept all day, worked evenings, partyed til morning. After months of this and asking her to please call us & tell us when she would be home, we gave her an ultimatum. Call, follow the rules or you are out. She didn't follow the rules, stopped coming home. We tried calling & texting. We texted her that her stuff was packed & on the front porch. Several days later I came home & it was gone. But we had no ideal where she was. Couple of months later one of our high school sons heard where she was staying. It was the local party house & family. I went there & told these people what they were doing was wrong. That week we went on a search for her car. Hours later we found it, took it, & hid it. It was the car we gave her when she graduated high school. It was in our name & I didn't want the ramifications if she was driving drunk. Things progressed worse.
Finally we did our own intervention & tricked her to my sisters house by promising her car back. We gave her a choice. Rehab or never see or speak to us again.
She went to rehab. 30 days. Then she went to a sober living facility for 90 days.
She is now a self sufficient & beautiful adult. Her only problem is trying to find a stable man in his twenties who does not "party". But she has her values & won't except anything less. I am proud of her.
I do not regret putting my foot down. She expected it. And it did get worse before it got better. But I did not give up my values.
The girl (& her family) that she was living with had a major wreck & totaled her car just weeks after my daughter went to rehab. Shortly afterward she left her home & is now living on the streets.
A few months ago her sister told my son...." I hear your sister is doing great". He said yeah. She said "That's great my sister is still an addict".

I know it's not that simple. I am lucky. But I'll never forget when I approached those parents & told them this was all wrong. They said..."what you going to do about it, they are over 18"!

I had to at least honor my values & those that I had raised her by. And if that didn't work, then so be it.

Good luck, my thoughts are with you!
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Old 06-20-2011, 10:20 AM
  # 23 (permalink)  
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"No More Letting Go" by Debra Jay is a good book to read - lots of info on staging interventions, as well. JMHO.
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Old 06-20-2011, 10:27 AM
  # 24 (permalink)  
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She's 18, she's an adult. You don't have to give her a place to live, you don't have to give her money, you don't have to pay for college. Get yourselves to al-anon and start working your own recoveries. She will get better when she is ready to get better and not one second sooner.

Take what you want and leave the rest.

Edit:
BarelyHere, I liked the intervention. I am so glad it worked out for you and your daughter.
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Old 06-20-2011, 11:01 AM
  # 25 (permalink)  
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When I went through this with my D-now-20, I was told that first I had to clearly and specifically define what the rules are, exactly what behaviors are prohibited, and exactly what the consequences would be for violations. I'd never really done that. My mushiness, emotionality, and uncertainty set the framework for the chaos and power-struggles. Clarity and detail will make things easier for you and your husband and will (eventually) provide comfort and stability for everyone- parents, your D and younger kids too. Uncertainty= chaos, power struggles, emotional overwhelm, in-fighting in the entire household.

It’s not about punishment, it’s about structure and certainty and defining what really is important to the parents and what you guys will and won’t accept. Then if she defies or violates, you know what to do, you have no choice any more. As parents we can’t break the rule ourselves by not enforcing them- WE have no “out” or excuse.

If we don’t live up to the rule, WE say, “Nah, that wasn’t really important” or "But I don't want to." (Just like they do! I taught my D that! after yelling and crying first.) It was really really hard to get myself to live up to the rules and consequences.

That's the hard part- wrangling ourselves into place, setting the rules and consequences for ourselves and living up to them. I fought it like a cat fighting a bath.

(Now I realize I fought living up to my word to myself and what I believe is right with my recent XABF, too. Thank you so much for reminding me of this.)

My heart goes out to you. It is SO hard to do with a child/adult. It was easier when they were 3 years old.

If the rules and consequences are clear and solid, it is so much easier and more peaceful. She chooses whether to defy, leave, and make her own way. Simple, clear choices that she gets to make. We might not get our way. (and I hate that.)
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