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Grieve the child they didn't become

Old 04-23-2007, 12:57 PM
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Unhappy Grieve the child they didn't become

I was sitting in the beauty shop today and picked up a magazine. I turned to an article about autism. While reading the story something really stuck out in my mind. The counselor of the woman whose child had autism told her that she needed to grieve the child that her son didn't become. That really hit me because I think that is what I have been doing for a long time. You know all of the wishes and dreams we have for our kids........they aren't happening. Whenever I see brides in beautiful wedding dresses, I feel pain. Whenever I see mom's and daughters having fun shopping, cooking, decorating together, I feel pain. I want so bad to have a normal relationship with my daughter. I have so much to offer. But it's not happening. I love her with all of my heart, but she is not the daughter that I dreamed of. I guess I have to grieve the loss of the daughter that she didn't become.
Does anyone feel this way?
Lo
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Old 04-23-2007, 01:05 PM
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So sad, and I think you're right on target with what makes addiction so difficult for those who love addicts. While it's my husband and not my child, I'm grieving for the relationship we could have had, for the children I'd wanted to have with him but that now I'm afraid to make, for the life I'd dreamed of...I had a connection and attraction to this man unlike anything else I've ever felt, and it's hard watching him let such a stupid, stupid thing come between us. There's a Fiona Apple song, "Oh Sailor," that has a line in it, "Oh what a thing to know/what could be instead/Oh, what a blessed curse to see..."

That line always tears me up inside. It's awful to imagine all the things that we could have done and how that powerful connection I had to him could have been such a blessing.
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Old 04-23-2007, 01:08 PM
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(((Lobo)))

Im going to tread this kinda lightly. I am the addict for my mother. I am in recovery now. But even when I was using my mom told me that she loved the moments of 'clarity'(when I cleaned up) that she would enjoy. It never got to the point for us that she had to turn away from me. But my point here is that maybe look forward to the times yoy have with your daughter and never give up all the hopes and dreams that you have of your daughter. But right now its ok to feel hurt and lonliness by the addict in your daughter. I dont really express myself the way I want to here.

Also, have you considered doing something like adopt a daughter for a day? Its spending time with foster kids who have no one. Alot of you moms and dads here have so much to give.
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Old 04-23-2007, 01:15 PM
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i agree with gwen, there is always hope, maybe where she is right now is just the path that will lead her where she needs to be. i pray for you and that you're daughter finds her way soon.
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Old 04-23-2007, 01:20 PM
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thejunkyswife.......I know you understand how it feels. You have many dreams of building a beautiful life together with your husband. You deserve to have beautiful things in your life. As long as there is life, there is hope. Where would we be without HOPE.
There is another song that tears me up........Do it Anyway by Martina McBride. It says a lot.
Lo
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Old 04-23-2007, 01:32 PM
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((Gwenmarie30))
I haven't given up on her. She is worth so much more to me than she is allowing herself to be. It seems I do all of the work to keep the little bit that we have together. I also love the moments of clarity. The ups and downs are so hard. I can't get too comfortable because it doesn't last.
Where would we be without HOPE.
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Old 04-23-2007, 02:01 PM
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Thank you for your love and prayers.......Lo
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Old 04-23-2007, 02:17 PM
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Anvilhead))
Beautiful written.........I got a lot out of that. Please understand, I don't want her to fulfill my dreams. I want good things in life for her. I don't care if she wanted to be a roller skating waitress, as long as she was a clean and happy one. She doesn't have to live up to my expectations.
My daughter also lived in LA for a while.......now she lives with me. I also have no say in her life......because even if I do, she does exactly what she wants to do anyway. I do feel old fashioned about "my house, my rules".
To that she says I am 25, you can't tell me what to do. I don't want to tell her to leave.......she doesn't have a place to go. I feel like I am between a rock and a hard place.
Your input means a lot.......Thank you.
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Old 04-23-2007, 02:31 PM
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Much love to you sweetie. We can relate. My daughter turned to drugs when her father died 6yrs. ago. Before that she was a delightful girl. She was 19yrs. old. I never really grieved the loss of my husband because I was so busy trying to fix my daughter. I lost them both at the same time in different ways. I know what is is to WAIT and WAIT and WAIT. I'm still doing it.
We can't keep making excuses for their behavior. I guess that is part of us being sick. I have raised my daughter the best way I knew how. I have always been there for her and still am. She just has to reach out. I have reached out to her but have rejected many times.
And the beat goes on............Lo
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Old 04-23-2007, 02:31 PM
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I said it to one of my first Alanon friends... "It feels like my daughter is dying!"

The grief was REAL...

She told me, "Of course your daughter isn't dying...she isn't sick and she isn't gone. The only thing that died is YOUR dream of how her life SHOULD be."


... man, that was harsh. Nice to see that what I felt is confirmed by others here. But also that, as straightforward as my friend is (and that trait I happen to APPRECIATE in her today), she was absolutely right.

My grief was for MY dream.
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Old 04-23-2007, 02:58 PM
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((Big Sis))
Sometimes our straightforward friends can slap us into reality. That is a good thing. It's just that we want so much more for them than they want for themselves. I do believe that our addicts want their lives to be good. I do believe that they sometimes want some of the same things that we want for them. They just can't seem to let go of the dysfunction. Even when my daughter is clean, she is still dysfunctional.
As parents we will always have hopes and dreams.........if they are not fulfilled it is okay for a parent to grieve the lost dreams.
Lo
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Old 04-23-2007, 03:38 PM
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At first I grieved the loss of my dreams for my daughter. Now I just grieve the fact that I really don't have a daughter. When she is active in her addiction, any kind of a relationship is impossible for me to have with her. I can't invite her to go shopping. She might sell the clothes for drugs. I can't listen to her problems because she is with her abf because he buys her drugs. So it is hard to listen to how abusive he is when she choses to stay there. There is no common ground for us to have a conversation. What do you talk about to someone who has absolutely no life beyond scoring and using drugs. Would I have liked my daughter to finish college, marry a nice man and have a family. Hell yes, but right now I would settle for her getting clean. I no longer have dreams for her, just hope that someday she will have dreams for herself. Marle
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Old 04-23-2007, 04:00 PM
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My son was diagnosed with Autism last spring. I know exactly how you feel. I had so many emotions, But.. YES a year later there is a but! My son has been in therapy and working so hard to be just like everyother kid. He has made many improvements with his disability! He is doing things I never thought he would be able to do. I never emagined this moment.

Your daughter.. she may recover one day. She may go for treatment. Don't loose hope. There is alway's tomorrow..
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Old 04-23-2007, 05:04 PM
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((Mavis))
Praise God for miracles. Sometimes when we don't expect things to become that good and they do......WOW we sure feel blessed and then some. You sound so happy for your son, it brought tears to my eyes. My prayer for all of us here is that we too one day can feel happy tears for our loved ones who need so much help.

"When God measures a man, He puts the tape around the heart instead of the head"
There are a lot of big hearts here.........Lo
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Old 04-23-2007, 05:13 PM
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lobo I completely understand what you are saying--sometimes it feels like I am at a perpetual funeral!!!!! It hit me too just like you a while ago--I MISS HIM--that little boy and young man who I was always so close to--I lost him-I lost him and he is never coming back......he is sober now at 27--but when you start abusing at an early age--how normal can you expect them to be?
All I ever wanted was for my son to be happy in life no matter what path he chose. I never expected that when he was 14 I would be out driving around town tying to find him--or that I would be visiting him in rehabs-detox units and psych wards.My beautiful son--the only thing in life that was mine-that I loved-would raise his hand to me and beat me.
Every once in a while I see him still--that old part of him I mean-it comes through.Don't get me wrong I am sooooo happy he is sober but I feel after all he has been through he is damaged and will never have a 'normal 'life'.It just tears me up...crying now have to stop writing...
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Old 04-23-2007, 05:14 PM
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((Marle))
I understand completely what you are saying. It seems we quit dreaming the
big dreams. Isn't it funny now that we would be happy to settle for them to be clean, respectful, self-respect, honest, kind, responsible, loving. It seems we dream of them having qualities rather than being a bride, a doctor, a lawyer, a mother,a father. Can you think of any other qualities that you would like? I think being whole sums it up........that is my new dream.
Lo
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Old 04-23-2007, 05:15 PM
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I don't have any dreams any more.
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Old 04-23-2007, 05:21 PM
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As you guys are grieving for your daughters, my husband is kind of grieving for the son that he doesn't have because of addiction. They used to go hunting and fishing together, before the nightmare of drugs. Last I heard he was on the road to recovery, (hopefully this time it will last), and maybe this time next year there will be another fishing trip with my son aboard. I pray.
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Old 04-23-2007, 05:34 PM
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((Sunflower))
My keyboard is getting wet. He will always be your beautiful son. You were chosen to be his mother because you were probably the best mom for someone like him. It's okay to grieve the little boy lost. When we were given these jobs of being moms to these kids no one said it would be easy. We also never thought it would be this hard. Look at it this way......someone had to be their moms. They are pretty lucky to have us and that is the positive in their lives.
Look at Mavis........she was chosen to have a son with Autism because she was the best person for the job. It takes very special people to have to deal with what we are dealing with. With the help of God and all of you here we can do this............Lo
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Old 04-23-2007, 05:43 PM
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Sons or daughters, mothers or fathers.....we all have the same heartache and grief. Hopefully your husbands son will be back fishing with him again. Is your son also an addict? Lo
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