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Decisions ....

Old 05-05-2012, 03:38 PM
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Decisions ....

Hello all,

Well, we've had a rough week with my stepdaughter. Yet again, her mum let her down, badly this time. My SD arranged to visit her mum at her home last Sunday, mum told her to go round at 11am, which she did but her mum wasn't in, or at least she wasn't answering the door or her phone. It was a foul day, pouring with rain, and the poor kid stood for half an hour banging on mum's door to no avail. Don't know if you're all aware, but mum lives half an hour away, and SD was, on the Saturday night, staying with an old school friend in mum's town, hence arranging to see her mum on the Sunday. She called us, in a distraught state, asking if we'd go and collect her, so we did. Have to say the anger I felt all day was overwhelming. I was soooo pi$$ed off with her!

So, all week SD has been saying she's had enough and doesn't want to see her mum anymore. We told her to think about it, but she seems to have made up her mind, but hadn't actually told her mum because she's scared to. We said writing a letter would be the best way, because if she sent a text (her preferred option) mum would say we'd sent it, so she drafted a letter on Friday, and boy was it harsh, but deserved. Anyway, she said she wanted to write it out neater and post it on Monday.

Today we also learned from SD's little brother's dad that the hair strand tests came back that the Court ordered for his residence case. She tested positive (of course), and it showed she's drinking in excess of 56 units per week. SD was angry about this too, as even though she knows her mum's an alcoholic, mum has been denying to her that she even drinks anything alcoholic at all.

This evening mum phoned to speak to SD. SD wouldn't answer her phone to her, so mum phoned my husband's phone. SD told my husband to tell her she doesn't want to speak to her or see her for a while, so he did. She took it okay to be honest, well she didn't rant and rave anyway. He explained that their daughter was angry with her, particularly about the let down at the weekend, and that we'd all learned how much she's drinking by the hair strand test results. All she said was 'can you tell her I'm having counselling because I'm suffering the effects of being assaulted by X (her ex boyfriend)', and that was it. Oh, she did say should she ring tomorrow, but my husband told her not to, and to give their daughter some space. He told her she would receive a letter.

Then, half an hour later she text SD and said she would ring her tomorrow!!!!!!! Hubby has text her back asking her if she understand's what he meant by 'she doesn't want to speak to you or see you at the moment' and asked her, again, to give their daughter space.

SD is feeling pretty rotten at the moment, says she feels guilty now her mum knows how she feels, but I think she'll get over it. Have to say that we were on the verge of stepping in and stopping contact for a while anyway, simply because it's not constructive and just upsets the kid. The woman gets to her, and she's sick of acting like everything's okay. I hope she sticks to her guns and doesn't allow her mother to manipulate her into feeling sorry for her.
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Old 05-05-2012, 03:54 PM
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Your SD is lucky to have your support Nix Nox. At least she knows that you are both emotionally there for her since her mother is not.
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Old 05-06-2012, 08:51 AM
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Oh, that breaks my heart to read. It seems especially hard when its a child and the parent is the alcoholic. I know how needy my teens are right now; I can only imagine how your SD must feel. Is there any programs she attends or can attend to help her learn to cope with alcoholism I am thinking of Ala-Teen but I know there are others.

So glad she has you for support. Sounds like she won't be getting it from her Mom anytime soon.

So sad...
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Old 05-06-2012, 09:49 AM
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You're right, and the teenage years are hard enough! She's having weekly counselling at school, but I'm not sure about the things the counsellor is telling her to be honest. My SD pours her heart out to her, and tells her she's furious with her mum, but the counsellor keeps telling her she must make allowances for her mum because she's ill and doesn't know what she's doing. I get that, to a certain extent, and so does SD, but when SD told the counsellor she was thinking of not seeing her mum or speaking to her for a while, she advised against it, and when SD told the counsellor she was going to write her mum a letter telling her how she feels, she advised she writes it but doesn't send it because her mum is ill and it will upset her. Not quite sure of the 'value' of this counselling, because to us she has every right to be angry and upset with her mum, because mum keeps on letting her down and breaking promises, so if she wants to write and give mum the lowdown on how she feels then she should do so. Okay, it might upset mum, but what about SD's feelings? And, even though we all know it won't actually make any difference because mum is an alcoholic and won't recognise her actions or do anything to change them, she should know how her daughter is feeling.

My husband thinks we should speak to the counsellor about her counselling methods?
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Old 05-09-2012, 11:15 AM
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I posted SD's letter yesterday, so mum would have received it today. No news so far! We are expecting major fallout, perhaps she's in shock (do alcoholics suffer from shock of that kind?). The final letter wasn't quite as harsh as the first draft, but it was very matter of fact and to the point. She told her mother 'you're a waste of tax payers money sitting on your backside all day drinking. Who do you think pays for your habit?'. She also told her mum that I am more of a mum than she has ever been. Of course I am so proud she said that, but admit to feeling the teeniest bit sorry for her mum, because I cannot imagine how I would feel if one of my kids said that to me about another woman. That said, it would certainly push me into being the best mum ever, something which sadly SD's mother is not capable of.

She ended the letter with 'goodbye mum', and then her name, no kisses.

We shall see what happens I guess.
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Old 05-09-2012, 11:58 AM
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I agree with you NikNox, the time for making allowances for mum's illness has long past.
The emotional damage she inflicts on your SD every time she talks to her cannot be taken back.
Yes, your husband and you should find a counselor who understands that alcohol is no excuse for her behavior.
I am a (recovering) alcoholic mother, I had to quit drinking to keep my children after I graduated from rehab. Otherwise, the Army would kick me out and put them in foster care. I could have got them back eventually, but I was NOT going to let that happen.

No, I do not think she is in shock, I think she is having a pity party. More reason to drink. Not your fault, not SD's fault, not her ex-husbands fault, she has had plenty of direct nudges to change her life, and she chooses not to do that.

SD finally had her say, and thank the HP she did that. What a release for her.
Just keep reminding her, a drunk drinks and it is not her fault, never was, never could be.
Bless your heart for being there, and her dad for backing both of you up on this.
I understand if dad wants to minimize his role, but he might have to get in between them if mum insists on being a manipulative, whiny, tantrum throwing drunk.

Thank you from this ACoA,
Beth

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Old 05-10-2012, 04:55 AM
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Thank you Wicked, very much. We do reiterate to her, all the time, that her mother's alcoholism isn't her fault, and that it started way before she was born. She understands this, thankfully. But, you're right, we've given mum plenty of chances and nudges (after she let SD down, again, the Sunday before last, I sent her a text and said she was on the verge of losing her daughter if she didn't buck up her ideas, and have sent similar texts over the past 10 months to her, not nastily, just trying to make her realise that her daughter was gettng to breaking point) to try and improve her contact with her daughter, but she's not taken any notice. She probably thought I was just an interfering bitch, the bitch who has taken her child away from her, and why the hell should she listen to me? I get that. She has reminded me over the months that SD is NOT my daughter, and has told me on numerous occasions that the 'bond' between them is 'unbreakable'. I always wanted to reply with something like 'who are you kidding?', or 'you haven't got a clue have you?', but never did because I always knew she would find out for herself, the hard way.

All we can do now is support SD through whatever her mum chooses to throw at her, because she will, guaranteed. She may be silent at the moment (still haven't heard anything), but that won't last long simply because she's not the type to just stay silent. Sure, she's wallowing in her self-pity at the moment, she's very good at that, but she'll hit out eventually. We are half expecting a threat of suicide, something she seems to like doing whenever she's sussed out and cannot deny truth when it's been found out. She did that when her son was removed from her by Social Services to live with his dad, told him that if he kept their son she would hang herself. He said 'fine, just make sure you tie the knot properly then'. She attempted (well I say attempted, half-heartedly) suicide every time my husband tried to leave her by taking overdoses, and when he left her for good she would overdose at least once a month and would ensure he knew about it. This however, is much more heartbreaking (surely?) as her daughter has basically told her to stay away from her. I have to say that if she were to try suicide and were successful, I don't know how we'd cope with that, let alone my stepdaughter
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Old 05-10-2012, 04:47 PM
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If the bond between them were a rope, with a bunch of twisted strings, the drunken one has been breaking this bond over the years.
Mum holds the scissors, and every time she lets her daughter down, she cuts a thread.
Misses a call, snip, calls her a name, snip misses a visit, snip, misses a holiday, snip snip.
The last few threads might be there, but she is to busy convincing other people that the bond is unbreakable to notice she has been cutting the threads all this time.
If ever someone was hanging by a thread, it is this woman's relationship with her daughter.
She is incapable of seeing beyond her own nose.
Good God, if she were successful, (if only by accident cause she is bad off) how to deal with that?
Maybe talk to the a counselor about that, to prepare SD for the worst. That woman. I do not like her. I am using the British ability of understatement. But, you cannot see the steam coming out of my ears! Maybe I should go have a cuppa? lol
Your daughter will come out stronger for this, maybe she could help others when she is ready. But, we must stay in the now, it is the only time we have control over.

Beth
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Old 05-12-2012, 02:39 PM
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You are so right Beth. And I don't like her either. Actually, I hate her. Sorry, I know she's 'ill' and all, but jeez. She is the epitome of how NOT to be a good mother! What she's done to this child is inexcusable, evil, cruel, despicable. And, we have not heard a word from her since she received her letter. I have to say I'm surprised, because I know for a fact that if one of my kids was so pissed at me that they wrote me a 'goodbye mum' letter, I'd be straight over to speak to them, heart to heart, cards on the table. No way would I just not do anything. We were talking about it today, my husband and I, and discussed that we reckon she hasn't said anything because she cannot deny her drinking anymore. Each time SD has confronted her about her drinking, she's said she doesn't drink, has sworn on her children's lives she doesn't drink. Now there are hair strand test results which categorically refute that, and we think that she knows if she did come to see her daughter to talk, she wouldn't be able to tell her she doesn't drink, and she clearly doesn't want to admit, face to face that she does, so she's staying away. In some ways I guess it's a good thing, but in others it's causing SD to think that her mum really doesn't care about her. I do believe that somewhere in that woman IS love for her children, but because the drink is all consuming and all powerful in her life, they cannot come first, ever, or until she realises her problem and deals with it.

If she had topped herself, we would know by now, and I think that if she was going to do it it would have been when she got the letter, as a kind of 'I'll show you' action, knee-jerk to the spite spat at her from her own flesh and blood, spite she truly deserves, but she'll never see that.

SD seems okay. She has asked, every day, if there's anything in the mail from her mum, so she is hoping her mum will contact her. Poor kid.
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