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Son's g/f in crisis

Old 06-17-2015, 04:59 AM
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Son's g/f in crisis

I learned last night that my older son, who I am SO proud of, having overcome a lot of challenges in his own life, is dealing with some serious crap.

The kiddos' dad (first husband) called late last night to find out whether he had called me. Apparently his girlfriend, whose mom is terminally ill, had some kind of breakdown and disappeared. Her brother was able to determine she was driving toward the next state and the State Police there stopped her and put her in the hospital crisis unit on an involuntary hold. As far as I know there is no substance abuse issue, though she does apparently suffer from an eating disorder that has gotten worse lately.

Son hasn't called me yet, though his dad suggested that he do so--I'm sort of the emotional even keel in the family. Dad was sort of baffled at son's response when he asked if he's going up to see her--his response was, "She hasn't contacted me yet." I explained that sometimes that IS the best response--her family is dealing with it right now.

Dad was trying not to disclose anything too personal that he knew, and we decided son probably would expect him to tell me at least the basics. So I'll wait a day or two and if he hasn't called, I'll call him.

What's a shame, too, is that he was up for a big promotion (not guaranteed but he was one of two finalists)--it would have involved relocating to a different city--and he withdrew his application for it. That, too, was probably for the best. He is well-thought-of at that job, and there will be other opportunities. Sounds like he has a lot on his plate right now without adding more stress.

So about all I can do about the situation is to be a sounding board and offer emotional support. Hopefully his girlfriend will get the help that she needs. We all like her very much--she is a lovely person and they seem to have a good relationship overall.

Anyway, he's on my mind today.
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Old 06-17-2015, 05:59 AM
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I'll keep this situation in my thoughts...
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Old 06-17-2015, 08:26 AM
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Dealing with eating disorders in the family, my heart is sinking reading this.

The parallels with addiction are many, the most prominent one being the utter lack of awareness of suffering from a disease. With the malnourishment of an ED, her brain is simply not able to function well enough to make decisions for herself -- and that ability won't return until she is re-fed and has maintained a healthy weight (which is not what the government calls "healthy weight" but usually about 10+ pounds more than the top of their range) for a while.

I lived with an alcoholic for 20 years. I have to tell you that two years with a child with an eating disorder aged and wore me out more than those 20.

A lot of my friends in the eating disorder family community find Al-Anon to be helpful -- to work on emotionally detaching and staying on your side of the street. Which you are doing a fantastic job of.

If he were to decide that he wants to educate himself regarding eating disorders, let me know and I can point him to sound sources. The treatment modalities have changed a lot; eating disorders are now recognized as brain-based, biological, largely hereditary diseases that can be "turned on" (like flipping a switch) by reducing calories or by a traumatic event.

Sorry to write a novel about it but I'm living and breathing eating disorders right now and it is very difficult to find qualified care, especially for an adult who can't be involuntarily committed by parents.
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Old 06-17-2015, 08:34 AM
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Thanks so much lillamy--could you send me what you've got in terms of resources? I have a feeling he, himself, would not be too amenable to a support group for himself, but I could pass it along, as well as any info he could use to educate himself. He did a lot of therapy in his adolescence, and although I believe he benefitted from it, he doesn't think it's so hot--for him, anyway. He's supportive of therapy for others.

I suspect this is probably a bulimia situation. She doesn't appear excessively thin--at least not when I last saw her at Christmas. My ex didn't want to go into too much detail out of respect for their privacy. But know that purging is very damaging to the body, as well.

Fortunately, they are in a major metro area so there should be a lot of good places to get help.
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Old 06-17-2015, 09:03 AM
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Ugh. I am so sorry to hear this. A close friend's daughter has an eating disorder and has for years. The strain is awful for both she and her mom. It's such a shame b/c she is an absolutely lovely girl. My friend has literally exhausted every penny she has to try for help, including double mortgage on her house that she is about to lose. And it continues. So so sad.

I am glad you are there for him. He will likely need a voice of reason very soon.

Hugs to all of you!
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Old 06-17-2015, 09:36 AM
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Sending hugs and support, LexiCat.
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Old 06-17-2015, 09:59 AM
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Sending many good wishes. I'm so sorry!

It looks like you're finding a healthy balance between reaching out and connecting, and stepping back and letting others find their way. Hugs and prayers for each of you.
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Old 06-17-2015, 10:32 AM
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Lexie, what are you doing for your own care today? May you find joy in today, so that your life is full and overflowing.
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Old 06-17-2015, 10:36 AM
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(((((Hugs))))) Lexie
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Old 06-17-2015, 10:39 AM
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Lexie-

I am so sorry for the situation as a whole.

There is a fantastic ED clinic in the metro area I think your son/family resides in. It is very well respected both on an inpatient and outpatient basis and I suspect/know from friends that have had treatment there that family work is a part of it.

A book I have found really helpful in my own recovery is Eating in the Light of the Moon by Anita Johnson. I also recommend it to loved ones trying to get a handle on why their loved one may "do what they do."

Sending warm, loving thoughts to the universe for your loved ones today.
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Old 06-17-2015, 10:40 AM
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Originally Posted by keepingthefaith View Post
Lexie, what are you doing for your own care today? May you find joy in today, so that your life is full and overflowing.
Well, at the moment I'm prepping for a webinar I'm presenting (obviously taking a break). Tonight I am going to a concert--Robert Plant (Led Zeppelin) and Pixies (AGAIN--saw them a few weeks ago at my first visit to The Stone Pony). (No such thing as too much Pixies.)

I have front-row seats for tonight, and it's semi-covered. Should be cool.
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Old 06-17-2015, 11:47 AM
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Sending positive thoughts your way for both you and your son.
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Old 06-17-2015, 12:36 PM
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Good thoughts coming your way, Lexiecat. Nothing worse than your children in distress.
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Old 06-17-2015, 12:52 PM
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Sending you all prayers and good juju, Lexie. ((HUGS))
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Old 06-17-2015, 02:05 PM
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All love and prayers for you all!
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Old 06-18-2015, 01:03 PM
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Just sending lots of hugs and support to you and your family.
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Old 06-18-2015, 01:09 PM
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Oh I want to go to that concert with you!!! I hope it was as awesome as it sounded!!!
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Old 06-18-2015, 02:16 PM
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Oh, it was! A great concert, I mean. I can't believe how well Robert Plant's voice has held up over the years. He can still do that growl, and he can still hit the notes. He did a lot of Led Zep and I loved his new band, The Sensational Space Shifters (though I'm not crazy about the name).

Pixies were great too. The venue is partially covered, I was sitting up front, but it was a very pleasant evening.
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