I'm loathe to write this, but I am a panicked/worried/stunned mother at the moment. My only son is in emotional crisis and has been hospitalized for the night. He has inherited the genetic tendency towards alcoholism, bi-polar, and depression from me. He's only 25 and this horror has almost broken my dear boy.
I really don't know why I am writing this in these forums, except that I need to express my guilt, I suppose, over passing on these insidious genes.
Of course I know it is not my 'fault', yet my heart is aching for birthing a child at all. Oh, lord, I'm getting a tad maudlin, no? Self-pity, probably...
Damn this mess.
I imagine I simply need to write to the people here who have always been so helpful...especially when I have felt to helpless.
Big hugs, girl! ((((lorlie)))))
Can't do or say anything to help make things better, other than to let you know I am thinking of you and your son, and rooting for you both.
You have a huge extended hub family here, so you need never feel alone.
Oh WriteAngled and Izzy, thank you both from the extreme bottom of my heart!
WA, you are so very right about the issues of heredity; in my sorrow last night, I neglected to mention his father, 2 grandmothers, 2 grandfathers have been alcoholics. His tendencies toward 'problems' of this nature are overwhelming. I also get the nature/nurture component (I'm a sociologist/psychologist by training), but the intellectual is currently squashed by the emotional.
Supporting him is foremost, yet he currently resistant to such help...soon, soon, I hope.
Izzy, HP's extended family has always been critical since home is in absolute chaos, as you can imagine. You've always been one of the best, and I am grateful for those lovely hugs! Right back at ya.
Feeling guilty about genes is pointless. Firstly, you are not speaking of a defined genetic lesion that can be pinpointed in an objective test and act as a basis for a decision whether or not to have children. Secondly, two people contribute to someone's genetic makeup. Thirdly, genes define only part of what makes a person.
If you look at it from another angle, you have been through the issues, which your son is now facing, and have survived them. You have the ability to understand and support him based on your personal experience.
Or, lorlie, my heart breaks for you. I've been through it all myself, and the absolute worst fears that have always taken a hold of me are that people will quit loving me and that I will be abandoned. You can't change anything that has already happened for him, but if you can be present to support him as much as possible, you are doing a mother's job. No guilt, dear friend. It is what it is, and there is nothing you can do, or could have done, to change that. Hold his hand now as often as you can. Offer him the nonjudgmental support that he needs as far as you can, and pray your head off for him. If you don't pray, ask others that you know who do to do it for you. I will.
M2C, your message is one I needed to hear-over and over...He is terribly afraid of being abandoned, as you say, and fearing loss of love is huge. Actually, he told me he doesn't feel anyone loves him at all-including his 2 1/2 year old son and his fiance.
I'm so sorry you've had to go through this, friend, but you do seem through your writing on the mend. I pray that you are.
Thanks so much for your prayers, M2C-at 3 pm when waiting at the hospital-I did 'pray my head off' gazing at the stars. Now I'm praying to the bluest of skies!
Let him know that it is NOT as hopeless as it seems, but acknowledge his hopelessness. Ask what you can do.
I am well on the mend, thank you! And it's through my husband's love and prayers.
I think he knows this will pass-IF he wants it to-and says he's hope for the future. You know, I learned that embracing depression ('owning it') helps more than trying to fight it. I know it did help me-I'd just tell myself, "Okay, I feel like shyt, so I think I'll weep for however long it takes...". It worked.
My boy hasn't quite grasped this yet, but I'm listening and gently relaying my own experience. And reminding him that depression/substance abuse, etc. is a global epidemic.
He's a very intelligent man, and I have faith that he will 'make it' if he so chooses.
Motown2Chitown-keep on mendin'!
I agree with "owning it". Meaning realizing and admitting ya have a problem! I also have a son who suffers from depression etc. It's not something that everyone understands; there's a stigma still attached to it. But my son actually sought knowledge and help for it himself before anyone else knew how to help him or was willing to! He was that bad off, yet that determined to get help.
Don't ever be sorry you had your son! I wouldn't give mine up for anything, no matter how bad his problems are. I know you wouldn't either; I'm just saying that every person has a purpose for being here; and every person has something good to contribute to life and society even if it's just revealing their emotions in a way that causes others to be compassionate. So don't be sorry you had him! I know he's hurting, and you don't want him to hurt, but you can help him deal with it just by being there and understanding, letting him know that no matter who else doesn't understand, you do. Many people who have a tendency toward depression etc., have the most loving and softest and purest hearts in the world, like my son has. And something else I've learned by experience-------he's not alone; there are many people who claim to not have any problems, but they do and yet won't seek help for them; they call themselves "normal" but will criticize people who actually admit they have emotional problems. Encourage him about his self-worth and his worthwhile place on this earth.
Eh......I really didn't mean to get this personal. But your situation just compelled me to empathize. Bringing this issue into open discussion is one of the things that will break the taboo, so-to-speak, about mental/emotional problems that so many people have to face these days......
Brenda-you've truly spoken to my heart. I thank you. Your son sounds amazing in his determination, what an incredibly courageous young man. Give him my love!
Yes, I do understand about the stigmatization of mental illnesses-I believe this is due to fear of the unknown. At least that's my perception.
Last night I was so insane about the situation that I wrote about regretting birthing him-that was self-pity, because that son of mine is so precious I cannot begin to explain it. He is my heart.
He is a very private person, wears his happy-go-lucky persona in social situations, then he comes to me personally weeping, sobbing that he needs help.
My poor sweet boy-as he (and yours, I'm sure) will always be.
He's an amazingly intelligent, kind, and compassionate person, yet he can't see these qualities in himself at this time...
It's wonderful to me that you've been personal, Brenda...oh, boy, so have I!
Take good care
Thank you! Talkin' with you has made my day. I hope and pray for you and your son's days to get brighter and brighter as time goes on.
Just hang on in there and be there for him........luckily you understand the problem............but also take good care of yourself ........thinking of you
Hang in there. You are not alone--nor is your son. This is no one's fault. If he has been hospitalized, they will give him the care he needs to become stabilized. We are going through the bipolar roller coaster with our 15yo daughter. When she is spiraling downward, it is scary, frustrating, and a whole mix of other emotions. I have had the same thoughts you are having about whether we should have had children with the bipolar so strong in my husband's family. But don't think about that any more. As you know, your son as a whole is so much more than bipolar or depressed, which are only parts of him. Our daughter's psychologist reminds us and her that the bipolar is like having a cold: some of the symptoms, like suicide ideation, pop up from time to time. The trick is to recognize these as symptoms that will pass, just like the sore throat of a cold eventually passes.
Lorlie, I don't know what to say except that I'll keep you and your son in my thoughts and prayers. Like I said to hubby just yesterday, seeing your kids go through bad times is far worse than going through them yourself. Stay strong - your son needs that. Sending big hugs your way!
Oh, habee, your words mean the world-I am happy to see that you have responded; haven't we been friends here for, what, 3+ years?
Thanx for the thoughts and prayers, much needed...
I know, kids are such a thrill and an amazing trial through their lives.
I am strong, yet oddly numb-suppose that's the mom he needs at the moment.
lorlie my heart and prayers go out to you, I know we haven't been in contact much lately but be steadfast and by his side. I know, I went through a troubled teen between 15 and 18 and I was losing him to drugs and gangs. Through perseverance and dedication, I knew I needed to save him and we faught off the demons together, I was not going to lose my youngest son to drugs and gangs who wanted to absord him. All I can offer you my friend are my prayers. FIGHT FOR HIM, BE WITH HIM NO MATTER WHAT, HANG ON TIGHT AND NEVER LET HIM GO IT ALONE, BE VIGILANT. I just know that your God is watching over the both of you. Hugs my dear friend and PLEASE PEASE don't blame yourself, continue to lift the both of you up, YOU TOGETHER as mother and son can and will make the difference.
Wow, it's incredible that you, my dear friend Vincent, came by this thread! We sure have been traveling our separate paths recently (not much contact as you point out) but I think it's now been confirmed (in
my opinion) that we have very similar life experiences. Some great, some terrifying-like this one. Your tdetermination to help and save you child must have taken incredible courage. And a love so very deep. You're incredible.
I must admit that when I read this,
"FIGHT FOR HIM, BE WITH HIM NO MATTER WHAT, HANG ON TIGHT AND NEVER LET HIM GO IT ALONE, BE VIGILANT."
you wrote exactly what I needed to read and absorb. So, "Thanks, I needed that" (haha-since we appear to have lived groovily through THAT era .
I am too intelligent, I think, to truly blame myself, but the genetic predisposition I've passed down to him tends to really f*ck with my head, you know?
My God is always with me, and I'm sure He's with my boy, but I do become discouraged in the face of such crises.
So...I MUST have faith.
My daughter also suffers from addiction/depression. I think that as the mother of an addict it is our nature to feel guilt. Whether or not it's a gene that contributes to the disease or environment, it's impossible not to feel guilty! I often wonder where I went wrong, how or what could I have done to spare her from this disease. Unfortunately knowing the reason or were the gene came from doesn't change the facts and does nothing to lighten the grief. All we can do is be supportive without enabling and never give up on them. I wish there was a better way and if anyone has one, I'd love to hear it! I'm barely hanging on myself!! I will include your son and you in my prayers tonight that your son and my daughter can find the peace they desire. Thank you for sharing this difficult time with all of us. Keep us posted!
wildove5, I suppose we are sisters at the moment, unfortunately. But your daughter will certainly be in my prayers now (it's the next day, of course). We do seem to be feeling the same ambiguity/horror/helplessness, etc. so I feel for your situation as well.
Do you think...I'm sorry to even say this...think of Sylvia Plath? As a writer, I've been mulling over and over on her tortured soul and the result. I can't even say the word. Sometimes I think I can see that terror she must have felt in my son's eyes, but that's probably my confused perception, I don't know. Probably shouldn't have written that...I don't want to send you any more nightmares.
I suppose I am just rambling out of helplessness. Fear. Sorrow. All of it!
Take care, dear woman...I really think I can empathize. ;(
I don't know you, but as a mother and hubber on many versatile topics, I know all too well the world of guilt, depression and other such things. take the pain and write! Write for him and all of the words that spring to mind.
gwilliams, thanx so much-I am trying and do know this is not only my problem! I appreciate your concern.
ALUR, a mother's love is so universal, no? Thank you for your support and suggestion that I write...though it's hard to find the time while 'taking care' of him. I get sooo exhausted. But I think your words have gotten through-time to pull out the journal.
PS: He drank again tonight-thinks he can do the sobriety thing himself. Such denial. My hubby and I are babysitting him and trying to convince him to go to rehab. He MUST move away-yes, he's returned to our house, with his fiancee and 2 1/2 year old baby. I'm torn about 'kicking them out'-if it were not for the child, I would.
Damn, it's all so ugly...
Oh we have so much in common. My daughter has a three year old. If it were just her, the 12 step phrase, " Let go let God " would be so easy. When your grandchild is involved, well, there is no letting go! I too know well the "torn" feeling your speaking of. I want to take custody of my grandson, but know doing so might be a double edged sword. On one side it wakes her up, and the other side, she will go further into a depression and never return! There is no easy answer! I did however send my daughter to live with her father a year ago. While her father puts his head in the sand most of the time to her ill's, at least her and I are not at each others throats in front of my grandson all the time. I also take him as often as possible for my own enjoyment and sanity. Keep me posted, if I learn anything helpful, I will pass it along here. I wish I had great words of wisdom for you girlfriend, but I am also at a loss!
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