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Ironically I was just talking to a family member this morning about this, not your story but about having enablers in a person's life when they are a mess (addict, MI, etc.) and that sometimes you have to lose it all, end up homeless & at rock bottom before you see what you have to live for, and then sometimes, it's too late & your destiny is to be no longer on the planet, either way, something has to come to a head at some point & it's either good or bad.
I used to be one to blame a lot of my "problems" on my childhood (not so great), and when I was diagnosed w/ a MI, I was ashamed, as if I created this & I had this status of being "crazy"... at least that is what I "thought" people would "think"... today, MI is very real & it's come a long way to understanding that it's a neurological issue that isn't warranted/wanted & can be treated if you want to be treated. If you ignore it, don't take your meds & pretend that it's everyone else that is the problem, not yourself, then...you spiral into something of denial.
I'm so sorry that your ex is still in this situation at 50, that's half of his life, 2 kids later & still...no progress. It's a shame, as the children are missing out, and so is he. I can only imagine the anger that his 24 yr old has towards him, if she's not angry, she's exactly like him.
Like I mentioned early in this reply, I was talking about a family member that CLEARLY has a MI & abuses alcohol. She's been in & out of rehab, her DH has "tried" everything, they've lost their house, she doesn't work, he's given her at least 10 times to try to get it together. Even her brothers & sisters (she's one of 14), and yet...she still continues on this path of distruction. I told my relative "it's the false promises that she's giving you guys, and every time you give her an ultimatum of getting help, she tells you what you want to hear & BAM, back to her old self again, 10 times later, she isn't taking you guys seriously b/c you've given her 10 ultimatums & taken her back each time she's screwed up"... my relative said "what do you do? where will she go?" again... I said "sometimes you have to hit ROCK BOTTOM before you get it"...until then, it's a matter of stopping the cycle. There are half-way homes for people like herself, that will monitor your every move, make you self-sufficient & get a job etc., but to continue to support her "habit" & enable her addictions (both drug/alcohol & mental health) it's just going to end up in death. You're basically giving someone permission to die when you continue to allow them to drink & do drugs around you, they ignore her patterns & say "oh, it's a wedding, she's going to drink, we're all drinking"...or "It's 4th of July, everyone's drinking, you can't expect us to not drink at a social gathering like that just for her". Why not? If alcohol HAS to be part of a gathering in order for it to be fun, something is wrong w/ that. I am not telling the family not to ever drink again, but if they can't b/c their sister is an alcoholic, then it's clear what the decision SHOULD be...however, they don't care & they do drink & she is around it & then she gets worst. No one wants to fall off the wagon or go into a mental institution, but sometimes you need too to see what you've lost or WILL lose.
Any who... I totally went off on another area here, sorry. I am in no way saying that your child/DD is going to be sick or have a drug problem. I'm just talking about this 50 year old man who has so many issues & instead of helping himself, he'd rather screw up & blame the rest of the world. How you put up w/ him for the amount of time that you did, I don't know, but I give you credit. I am sure, for yourself, you needed time to re-group & realize that you couldn't change him, no matter how much you wanted too. Hence the reason you are no longer w/ him & he's your ex.
I'm sorry you have to deal w/ this. For what it's worth, I do understand a lot of it, both from someone w/ MI & also from a child who was raised w/ false hopes from parents who didn't give a rat's behind. I know how it can turn out & that you can get the help you need & turn out to be a well rounded person. You being so involved and so aware of the signs for your DD's health, mental & physical, you will be wonderful at directing her in the right path to succeed. One hopes that her bio-dad will someday see the light & be some part of her life, in a positive way any ways.
Gosh, your posts here really hit home for me... It reminds me of where I came from & how far I've come to be a NORMAL person regardless of the crappy life I could have fallen into w/ so many excuses too...
Chantelle, you have so much to be proud of. You've gone through a lot and are still standing. It's amazing. Your children are lucky to that you are there for them.
I stayed with my ex for so long because 1) I wanted a baby so bad & was so caught up in my fertility issues for 5 years that I didn't notice too much and 2) Once he got diagnosed and I saw what was happening, I took my marriage vows seriously. I stood in a Church before my God & said "in sickness and in health". It took me 2 years to get over breaking that one.
But I realized he wasn't going to work to get better & he wasn't going to die either So I had to come to terms with it.
Fertility issues, I can't relate to them but I can say that I've watched a close friend go through hell & back b/c she couldn't have her girls w/ out IVF, she ended up cheating on her DH after her last daughter b/c she had focused on the whole having a child thing as well. Their marriage is hopeless & sad.
God, Faith, through sickness & in health... it's so much easier said than done.
Leaving someone b/c they have cancer & can't help it, horrible & cowardly, but watching someone self-destruct & take you down w/ them after offering help & there being help out there for them, well... God didn't intend for anyone to be abused for our entire lifetime either. No one can expect people to deal w/ that for the rest of your life. That's abuse & it sounds to me like you did everything in your power to make things work for the sake of your marriage vows & your family. Sometimes, you can't do it anymore. Take's a lot of strength to say "enough" and walk away knowing YOU did EVERYTHING in your power to try & they didn't. A marriage takes two, if someone isn't willing to put in the work, the other person can't expect to do it all to make it work for the both of you either. I hope you don't feel guilty about it, I am sure you don't, but at the same time I wanted to make sure that you heard it from someone else that you did what you could, you tried & you are still trying, for the sake of your DD. It takes strength to do that.
Gosh... if I didn't do my therapy (both emotional & Rx), I'd be a wreck & I don't know what I'd be like as a friend, mother or wife, I am sure I would be a horrible person to handle. I don't doubt that I "need" my therapies & I know that until there is a cure, this is how my life is & what I need to do to have a "good life"... My mother actually said to me the other day "can't you stop that? don't you think it's time?" Sigh... she never got it, and it's clear in her questions that she still hasn't. She's like Tom Cruise w/ the whole "anti-medication" thing & it really irritates me. It's not like I over medicate myself or WANT to take extra stuff, I do what I need to do b/c of my PCP, Psychologist & counselor's advise me to do. Obviously if an Rx isn't working anymore, I tell them, we tweak things & move to the next steps. I feel bad for my kids & my family, I sometimes feel like they deserve so much more than "me"... that they didn't ask for "me" and my "MI & disabilities" so why should they have to deal w/ me?
Then they reassure me that they love me & my quirks are what make me the strong person I am today.
I know I've totally switched this topic from a gift giving question to life, medicines & addictions (and then some).... I apologize if I've opened up stuff that you'd rather not have out there. I guess I feel compelled to speak from my heart when I care about an individual or their children, hence you & your lovely DD... which BTW, we don't have pix of her. I am sure you don't like posting stuff on-line (I am like that too which is why I use the private board to brag about my kids/family). Perhaps you could share some one day? I'd love to see some. If you feel comfy enough.
On that note, I should run... I'm always here, both on the JM boards/forums & PM's too...
Thanks Chantelle. It's ok to talk about things. I'm very open about my life now. I spent the 1st 39 years of my life hiding my family secrets. 1st my dad's alcoholism & then my husbands mental illness. My bouts with depression. I don't hide anymore. And once I started opening up to people, I found out that I wasn't alone.
And the funny thing is, all those years that I thought I was hiding my father's alcoholism was for nothing. Everyone knew. I lived in a small town. Years later, I was talking to a childhood friend who's father also worked with my mother. I decided to tell my dirty little secret. And to my surprise she said "Well yeah, everyone new." I was shocked. All that work and of course everyone knew.
No secrets now. This is who I am and what I've been through.
God I can relate to "hiding" who you are b/c the fear of the truth judging you, and others making comments that hurt. Then as you said, you open up, and you realize, you are NOT alone. So many of us have endured things. It's so easy to say BTDT, but when you talk to someone who's hit rock-bottom or you are experiencing a major life altering moment, it's weird when you do it, bricks come off & you're able to see how others really care.
I do have 1 secret that I've shared w/ very few on this board, and then deleted all of the info b/c I wasn't & still am not ready to share. I don't know why I am ashamed b/c it's not me who did anything to deserve it, I didn't partake in it, and yet, I am so emabarassed & feel like if people knew the truth, they'd view me as weak & stupid. I know I am not alone in what I've endured, but for some reason, I carry it like it's my burden. The person who should be picking up the pieces & cleaning the trash, has left it entirely up to me to do. I hate that person for that. Hate is a VERY strong word, but I do HATE this person for how they expected me to handle it & still, to this very day, they expect that I should be "okay" w/ their actions. I'll never be okay. I'll never forget. I've forgiven, but I'll never forget. I can't. Maybe it wont be as fresh of a wound in years to come, but so far in 3 years, a song, a place, a date, all comes back to me, and I see & remember it like it was yesterday. It practically had me on my butt & done, but b/c of my kids, I was forced to pick myself up & be strong. Thank GOD for my kids. Not that I wanted them to see me hurting or angry, but w/ out them, I would have given up.
With that said, I hope one day I can exhale & tell my story. As I mentioned, there are a couple of you on the forums that know this "story"... and have told me that I am strong, but I feel like they really view me as weak & stupid, but are too kind to be honest w/ me. It's like the new hair style that someone gets, and they say "how do I look?" and you don't want to say "HORRIBLE!!!" so you say "wow, makes a huge difference"... meanwhile you are thinking "HOLY CRAP, TERRRRIBLE...." KWIM? People want to be honest, but sometime that honesty cuts like a knife & hurts more. I'm not ready for that.
Last edited by Daisyfields; July 18th, 2009 at 04:33 PM.
i just want to give my opinion.
If i were in your shoes i would toss the present!. Espically since she is in a stable environment. and your DH has adopted her as his own bio child. she has mom and dad living together. I would not let my child know her father sent her a gift of hope that he still "loves" her and gets her wondering. It would bother me 100% which i see bothers you alot. Since he is abusive to top it off is not a good sign. he gave up his rights to his child and he will have to live with the decision he has made. so you both can move on. You know..i would tell him to please not to send anything because its no longer his child KWIM? just an idea.. i feel your pain though!
Single mommy to the most amazing child in this entire world!
Very true.. I am glad she handled it well!
Now u wont feel guilty also KWIM? you said you two were really close right!? you know whats best for her ..and im sure she is doing amazingly cause of you! Just remember this
Single mommy to the most amazing child in this entire world!