where has my beautiful boy gone?

(121 Posts)
summer68 Wed 06-Aug-14 16:43:39

17years ago I gave birth to a much wanted baby boy, he grew into a loving toddler ( always wanting cuddles) as he grew he became a bit of a mummies boy- sensitive, extremely loving and still wanting lots of cuddles. He remained like this even in his early teens. We were a very close family (dh, dd, ds and me) . THEN he changed........ He has complained that his childhood was too good, that he wants to hit rock bottom. He self harmed, talked of killing himself , ( we did everything we possible could to help him) he moved on to taking drugs, selling drugs to make money to buy drugs, then he began to threaten us with moving out ( into a squat) we've had to bend over backwards to stop him going, he comes and goes as he pleases and is rude ,often deliberately hurtful ( sometimes he leaves my dh or myself in a withdrawn state because of his hurtful comments and actions.)He stays out at people's houses who I don't know and thinks nothing of lying to us. My dh is trying his best to keep the contact going even though it means he is walked all over ( my son said his dad's a woose) I feel I can't carry on with this pain in my heart my beautiful son has gone. My darling d (18) hates her younger brother for who he has become ( they used to be the best of friends). I constantly question myself about what I did wrong. All I have ever wanted to be is a mum, what a mess I made.
Thank you if you've managed to read this far, I just needed to share in a place where people understand. I cannot talk about it at the moment to anyone because I just cry and cannot get the words out.
Thank you.x

smileyforest Wed 06-Aug-14 17:25:26

My goodness, I know exactly how you feel, I'm in counselling -learning how to 'cope and let go'. Empathy, it destroys your soul but I'm told-there is light- the lovely 'boy' will return, I have it all too, drugs, swearing, unsure what he wants, bright boy, has piercings, wants tattoos, nearly 18y ..always hated these things as a 14y old...Currently off work with stress.
Keep in touch as I'm desperate for support, I have two adult children who are fine, this generation seem to get caught up in all sorts x

I dont want to say too much and be identifiable but I have a family member who did exactly the same at the same age. It took a while but on his own he pulled himself back together, has a great life doing what he enjoys, good friends and is kind, caring and thoughtful. Im very proud of him but he did it himself as noone else could get through to him. There is hope.

summer68 Wed 06-Aug-14 17:43:45

Thank you for your replies, it means a lot. My son has pierced his nose, and wants a tattoo also, smiley forest. I try to stay upbeat and positive but it's like being on a rollercoaster and I just want to get off it now. Am I wrong to want to detach myself from the situation, my dh thinks we should just keep trying, but I feel it's killing me inside every time he rejects us. When he does want us it's only on his terms. He has changed beyond recognition .
Sorry long message again x
Very sad and tearful today.

Abilly72 Wed 06-Aug-14 17:56:12

Where does he get the money for his tattoos etc?Why are you allowing him to"sell drugs to buy more drugs"Why are you allowing him to live like this??Why not put him into care or a programme to help him see he is a wastrel causing untold harm to himself and family.Take him to a hospital and show him how people who take drugs die.Tell him there are many children in this country and millions on the Earth who would give their right arms for parents and loving sister such as he has
More importantly tell him the only person who will really suffer from the way he is,is himself as he will give away his right for a good life whilst all around him everywhere else will enjoy the life they work for.

MyballsareSandy Wed 06-Aug-14 18:18:58

Easier said the done Abilly, it's not quite as black and whjte as that.

summer68 Wed 06-Aug-14 18:31:14

If I tried that Allbilly I wouldn't see him again. I don't mean to be unkind or rude but you clearly have never been in my situation, Had I not, I would have probably have said the same as you. I cannot MAKE him do anything it's not that I'm "allowing" him to do it I have no control over what he does. I could do with someone like you talking to him though!

smileyforest Wed 06-Aug-14 18:57:12

I don't think anyone would ALLOW their son to live like this...believe me it happens to the best of families....but those families don't 'give up' and put them in Care!!
My son works P/T so earns money. I work in HEALTH....told my DS all he needed to know about drugs etc......I didn't wish this for him...nor did summer..clearly...
Summer- I'm learning to stand back and regain 'myself', Learning this isn't my fault and he will come through this,,,hopeful post from 'biscuits' xx

YeGodsAndLittleFishes Wed 06-Aug-14 19:52:24

Different situation to some extent. DD self harms, has friends (including a boyfriend) who does too. She's recovering from an eating disorder, and so tests the boundaries but wants them to be there. She is just 16 and has been talking about moving out. I wonder how much of it is wanting boundaries for the modern age, for modern living, where respect is earned and where neither total freedom nor attempts at control or laying down 'rules for living to be obeyed' make any sense.

DH and I were not really set boundaries or given much parental advice or guidance. That worked OK then, but 30 years on it leaves this generation with too many choices about things that can harm them. My parents gave a choice of strict religious advice or I was on my own. DH's were more 'whatever makes you happy' as long as it doesn't hurt anyone.

I don't think that is why DD has had problems, but she finds it more helpful that I'll talk about my thoughts and feelings about moving out/having sex/smoking/cutting/tattoos/piercings etc. Her dad is less comfortable, will just stick with 'whatever makes you happy as long as it doesn't harm anyone' or 'whatever your mum says' which leaves too much to chance.

I do try to emphasise that her body, what she does with it, what others do to it, what goes into it, that is down to her...but that doesn't mean she has to choose to do harm to herself to have that control, even if that is what it feels like. Recovering from MH illness means she's listening to that just now, but another bad day comes and she rejects it all again. I respect her rights to make choices about her body, but that doesn't mean she has to do things for the sake of it, or that I'll help her do things which I consider harmful.

It can be so tough to be a parent of a teenager, so tough to be them too, so many are caught up in this.

CeliaBowen Wed 06-Aug-14 19:59:22

I saw something somewhere that said it is SO hard living with a teenager but even harder living without one.

Have you spoken to your GP (You probably have)? Theycan refer you to a local parenting course for adviceand support, such as "triple P parenting"

Good luck.

hagarthorne Wed 06-Aug-14 21:02:09

I am so sorry for you. We are in a very similar position. We tried so hard, but it all went wrong. Everyday I see lovely boys and think how did his mum manage it?

I am so sorry.

Stepawayfromthecookiejar Wed 06-Aug-14 23:38:50

Oh ladies, these posts are so new we are all sitting here on this hot August night with the same heavy hearts and similar problems. Yes, the gremlins have got in to our family too and the sweet affectionate little boy is an unrecognisable angry young man. I am scared of his hatred for me (I get told in no uncertain terms) and bewildered by the sheer brick wall you meet when trying to talk and offer support and comfort. Ours is an older teen, but no sign of the anger and topsy-turvy lifestyle abating yet. Asleep all day, in and out all night!!
Yes, he has been working but things keep going wrong and jobs are hard to come by. A terrible couple of days has revealed there may be a drugs connection, makes sense, I don't know why we were so naïve.
Stressed to the eyeballs!!!

smileyforest Wed 06-Aug-14 23:43:29

Omg....stepaway...yes I was naive....oh it is so horrible..my DS does not appear to like me anymore....(:

Stepawayfromthecookiejar Wed 06-Aug-14 23:47:28

Hi smiley.......the only time my DS talks to me is to tell me how much he hates me (sometimes on a good day it's just doesn't like) heartbreaking isn't it. We've tried so hard, I wish I knew where I'd gone wrong.

If I can comfort any of you-

I am 22. 4 years ago my male friends were all a bit...ahem...off the rails.

There is not a single one who is not now a lovely, charming, caring and delightful young man.

I know it's trivial and doesn't help - but honestly, it is not forever. Weather the storm and things will be alright. smile

I'm female but was a bit fucked up at that age. Tried some nasty drugs.. Sank into depression. Got piercings and tattoos, treated my parents like shit.

I'm now depressingly normal. Pulled my finger out my arse, went to a great Uni, did well and now have a good job. I have grown up MASSIVELY since I was about 19/20.

Hope that helps even in a small, trivial way.

thanks

(Btw - would never ever ever blame my parents/friends parents for our ridiculous late teen years!)

Stepawayfromthecookiejar Wed 06-Aug-14 23:58:16

Awww, thank you greyhound, that does help! And can I say well done you without sounding too condescending! But sometimes the light at the end of the tunnel for us oldies does seem a long way away, especially when all the other problems of middle age are crowding in.
Thank you again, maybe I'll get a smidgeon more sleep tonight.......

summer68 Thu 07-Aug-14 01:21:25

Thanks Hagarthorne, I look at others son's too and try to analyse what I did so wrong. I also find it incredibly painful seeing mums out with their little son's, it feels like grief.
Step away, thank you for your comments, I understand.
Yegods, -my son was dating a girl who was self harming - diabetic and not taking insulin or eating - her parents were understandably besides themselves.
Greyhound thanks for chipping in - any advice on what might have helped you and your friends at the time? Maybe I should ask your parents as you've now obviously become a very caring person.

smileyforest Thu 07-Aug-14 07:31:43

Greyhound, comforting to hear x

hagarthorne Thu 07-Aug-14 09:09:19

I don't know why this thread has given me a bit of hope, perhaps Greyhound (thank you Greyhound). DS is nearly 22. We had given up hoping.

Might he ever be our friend again? Do you think this nightmare might end? He was always a difficult boy. Jealous of dd. We had a drugs battle when he was 15 and it's been bad since. But there were many happy times, and family jokes and games and pets and adventures. He has forgotten it all now though.

Yes summer, it is a grief. Such a loss. Few people understand that it is like the child you loved had died. That's sounds dreadful, but it's true.

It's 21 years work gone wrong. It's such a failure.

Summer, thank you for starting this thread. I would love things to get better for you.

So sorry hagar - give it time - I'm not 'there' yet completely, in that I don't feel emotionally settled or 'grown up'. thanks

summer in terms of advice, it's difficult to say. My mum is an oldest child and I'm an oldest child - I think she tried to empathise as much as she could. My dad sort of kept out of it. My mum is also really, really practical (and not emotional enough IMO) so she sort of dealt with me by just sorting things out. I knew they were always there for me, though, which they were during the many crises those years brought!

I think there tends to be a lot of focus on difficult early teens - around puberty - but I actually found it much harder to anchor myself and rationalise from about 17 onwards. I do feel like a totally different person now.

I will have a ponder more today as that was just a ramble really! But am thinking of all of you I know it must be really tough.

Preciousbane Thu 07-Aug-14 09:33:34

I am just struck by your comment that he says his childhood was too good. My DH and his sister had a lovely childhood, he is fine but she has dabbled in drugs a lot and destructive relationships.

She still went to University and has always had well paid jobs but seemed hugely ungrateful for her lovely stable upbringing. Mine wasn't at all so I don't get it at all. Just that MIL who is a really caring person said recently after a bout of bad behaviour from SIL that she wonders if she is like this because she never had to strive for anything and she did too much for her. I'm not one for chucking dc out on the streets and absolute tough love but when he disrespects your DH and calls him a wuss do you ever argue back or are you too scared?

Abilly72 Thu 07-Aug-14 12:35:08

Sorry to cause such reactions to my post...however...my questions were not answered.Where does he get the money from? and why do you condone or allow his illegal activity with the drugs?As a responsible adult you should report him to the police.His drug acticity is affecting other peoples dear sons and daughters.You may lose him [in your terms] by being more direct and taking action but if you dont stop him you could lose him in a much more cruel way and he may drag others down with him.All he is doing is by his choice and you should tell him that...none of it is your choice.You have no blame for his choices .

CeliaBowen Thu 07-Aug-14 13:35:33

I saw something somewhere that said it is SO hard living with a teenager but even harder living without one.

Have you spoken to your GP (You probably have)? Theycan refer you to a local parenting course for adviceand support, such as "triple P parenting"

Good luck.

Stepawayfromthecookiejar Thu 07-Aug-14 23:09:45

Celia, I will look into the parenting courses as any advice is more than welcome, but I might be trying to shut the stable door after the horse has bolted.

Does anyone else wonder though, is it parenting, is it the kid's personality, the influence from their peers.......which part is the weak link? I am the worst parent in the world (according to DS) but the other offspring (DD) seems to have weathered this terrible childhood quite well actually!!

Abilly, it would be interesting to hear of your own situation. Have you turned a beloved son into the police? Thrown one out on the streets? Managed to get a six-foot testosterone enraged 18yo taken into care?Did things work out OK in the end?

No-one here condones drugs, stealing, bad behaviour or attitude for one nanosecond. That's why we're here asking for advice. It really isn't that easy to sort out.

Greyhound....great insightful comments.

CeliaBowen Thu 07-Aug-14 23:57:32

step please do look into the parenting support. You are still their parent, for the rest of your life, whatever the relationship.
Here is the link for triplep. It is an international website but you can fill in the form on the website and they will put you in touch with someone local to you who can help.

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