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I can't cope

(82 Posts)
Shagmundfreud Tue 23-Apr-13 09:08:09

It all seems to have reached a head for me today. Mentally. I can't stop crying and feel completely hopeless about dd.

She does what she wants and nothing I say makes any difference. She is abusive towards me - physically and emotionally.

This morning I have found that I'm unable to parent my other two children. I feel used up and want to go to bed, pull the duvet over my head and stay there all day.

I just needed to say that.

UnChartered Tue 23-Apr-13 09:10:40


ok, your eldest DD out of the picture now (get back to her later), what makes you say you're unable to parent your other 2 DCs?

who says? have they been taken into foster care?

Shagmundfreud Tue 23-Apr-13 09:51:10

I can't stop crying.

I can't do anything. I can hardly put one foot in front of the other.

They are at school now but I will have to pick them up later. Feed them.

UnChartered Tue 23-Apr-13 09:53:42


so, all the DCs at school?

are you in bed?

TheRealFellatio Tue 23-Apr-13 09:57:25

I know how you feel. I have felt that feeling, where nothing I do/say makes any difference, walking on eggshells, and I feel utterly bereft and a total failure.

Have you had a meeting with the school? How do they find her? How old is she and what is she doing exactly? Do you have her father around to back you up?

WaynettaSlobsLover Tue 23-Apr-13 09:59:29

Why is she so abusive and are there any consequences put into place for her behaviour?

Hugs to you thanks I was dreadful to my mum sometimes and reading your thread brings home how I made her feel on many an occasion.

mindfulmum Tue 23-Apr-13 09:59:41

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Shagmundfreud Tue 23-Apr-13 10:25:56

She will be 14 in August. So young, but I feel it's over for us as a mother and daughter. She has rejected me as a parent and, like you Thereal, I feel bereft and an utter failure.

DH was away last week. Back now. She used the time he was away to threaten me, trash my room, refuse to go to school. I have done everything I can - been to CAMHS (we are awaiting family therapy to start), changed her school, stayed in close contact with her school. I've reasoned with her, begged her, pleaded with her. Yes, I've not done everything right. I have been overly critical (desperation - two years of her doing no school work and being rude to teachers, being aggressive/manipulative/bullying towards her younger brothers, disregarding every single request if it doesn't suit her to do what she's being asked) because 90% of the time I am at the point of tearing my hair out with her. She is comprehensively uncooperative with me. Every single failure as a parent - every silly comment made under duress (yesterday I made a rude comment about her friends' families being scuzzy for allowing a 13 year old to hang around at their house repeatedly for several hours after school without checking that their mother knows where they are) she will hang on to and recycle repeatedly. She repeats every single day - over and over again - that I am a shit parent, a useless mother, that other people laugh at me and pity me for having two children referred to CAMHS. She never lifts a finger to help at home. I don't think she's ever cleaned the toilet or pushed a hoover around voluntarily. She throws her rubbish on the floor and leaves dirty plates on the table. And then she repeatedly raises the fact that the house is messy and scruffy as evidence of what a shit parent I am, and how we are a failure as a family.

But what is happening now is that I find the whole thing has laid me - psychologically and emotionally - very, very low, and I feel like I can't go on any more. Today is DH's an my anniversary and I'd completely forgotten. He is angry with me for arguing with dd. He says I shouldn't engage her in arguments but he does himself when he is put in the position, as I usually am, of having to get her up for school and dealing with her when she gets home afterwards (if she's been). I'm still in the position of being responsible, legally and otherwise, to get up her to school, and to ensure her safety when she's not at school. She disappears off to people's houses who I don't know; she won't phone, she goes where she likes. If I take issue with her about it or ask her to explain herself she instantly becomes abusive. If I continue to engage with her, ask her questions about where she's been, explain to her why it's so important that she tells us where she is, this constitutes 'arguing'.

It feels like the final straw. I am so, so tired. I have an autistic 7 year old who can be very challenging and difficult. He is also obstructive and can't be easily persuaded to do the things he needs to do (like brush his teeth before leaving for school, put his uniform on, do his homework) if he is not of a mind to do it. And he often isn't - he has other priorities.

I can't imagine how we will live in this house for the next few years, with dd doing anything she likes, failing in education, being nasty and bullying to me and the other dc's, and then attacking me physically and emotionally every time I try to address her behaviour. How can we function as a family? I just can't see a way.

My head feels like a big bubble of nothingness and I can't stop crying. I'm not answering the phone and I want to go to bed and hide. I've had enough. sad

TheRealFellatio Tue 23-Apr-13 10:53:18

Oh my goodness. sad What a lot to deal with. Have to sought any help for yourself from the GP?

I'm sorry - I know being medicated into oblivion won't change what's happening but it might help you deal with it better. smile

If it's any consolation, although things didn't get to the stage where there was any intervention from outside agencies with my DS, he was pretty bloody horrible for about three years and I was blamed for everything that he felt anger and resentment about in his life. I tried everything to change things in the hope that he'd be happy, but as fast as I could change one thing he'd kick off about something else. Like you, offered to change school, etc, tried to be stricter (backfired) tried to be more lenient/tolerant (backfired) tried to ban him from seeing certain people (backfired) tried to bite my tongue and welcome his less than desirable friends into my home and make an effort to give them a chance (SPECTACULARLY backfired.) I'm afraid to say I even tried to buy him off at times, because it seemed the only time he didn't hate me was when I was buying him clothes, or giving him money in the hope that he'd spent it on going out with his 'nice' friends, which of course he didn't.

I felt such a sense of shame and confusion and failure I couldn't even talk to anyone about it, least of all on here. Only now I feel I'm coming out the other side can I even write down how low I felt.

Anyway, long story short, he is now 18 and finally I feel I can trust him to be a decent, sensible, non-obnoxious human being again. I still don't trust his judgement on so many things, he's still far from perfect, too quick to anger, etc, but we are friends again and I know he loves me and needs me, for all his bluff and bluster. He admits he has made huge mistakes and he knows now that anything I ever did/said was out of love and concern for his wellbeing.

I can't solve your problems with DD but I just wanted you to know that it is far from over for you and her. It may have to get worse before it gets better, but it WILL get better, so long as she believes that you love her. But you might have to disengage emotionally a little bit (or at least appear to) for your own sanity. If she is enjoying this power play over you then you need to starve her of the oxygen, if that makes sense. Try to get some control back being appearing more passive to what she says and does.

It will help enormously if you can maintain a united front with DH as well. If you both have a pact not to rise to the bait, and to have strategies to help diffuse volatile situations then it stops you from yelling at one another in times of frustration! (((poor you. It's shit, I know.)))

TheRealFellatio Tue 23-Apr-13 11:02:04

God, even reading that back has made me cry! I've not thought about any of it for a while, and I had sort of buried the memories of just what a shit place I was in with him, even this time last year. I never want to feel like that again about my own child, but if I do it will be because he has chosen to reject all the chances he's had and the influences of the loving, stable family he comes from. I know now that it is not, and never was my fault, and you should know the same.

Shagmundfreud Tue 23-Apr-13 13:20:26

I'm glad you're out of it (mostly by the sound) Fellatio.

I can't imagine that at the moment.

I was talking to a friend of mine yesterday who has a child who was very difficult in adolescence (he's at the tail end of it now). She said she felt that her feelings for him had been so damaged by his behaviour that she now finds it very difficult to express any love for him. She tries but she finds it very, very difficult. This is what I am frightened of. I feel dead inside at the moment. Not just for dd but increasingly for my other children. I feel hollow.

Floralnomad Tue 23-Apr-13 13:25:00

Do you have any family locally that would be prepared to take her on for a couple of weeks ,just to give yourself a break ? My son was very difficult pre teens and I used to ship him off to my mum for a couple of days and it did help.

Shagmundfreud Tue 23-Apr-13 13:28:18

She goes to my mums - when she wants to. Not when I want her to go.

I don't want her here.

I don't want to be here.

Tortington Tue 23-Apr-13 13:30:06

have her arrested for attacking you. it is assault.

you wouldn't let a stranger treat you that way - so why her?

Badvoc Tue 23-Apr-13 13:30:17

Shagmund...can you get into contact with SS?
Would some respite care help all of you ATM? For a break?
Am so sorry.
My parents went through hell with my sister (as did I) and it colours my feelings about her to this day (and she is 39 now)
Sending hugs x

Floralnomad Tue 23-Apr-13 13:32:51

If your mother will have her just get her there and if necessary take her keys off her so she can't get back in and if she comes back and causes any damage call the police . I know it sounds drastic but sometimes it takes drastic to get the help you need .

Badvoc Tue 23-Apr-13 13:34:53

Agree with flora.
She does not have the right to be physically violent towards you or anyone else.

TheRealFellatio Tue 23-Apr-13 13:38:12

Could you do that to your child at 13 Custy? I know I couldn't. I'd be scared that it was the beginning of the end. Personally I know I would avoid any police involvement until I felt there was absolutely no other choice.

Badvoc Tue 23-Apr-13 13:42:45

Read the op again fellatio...the op is very close to having no other choice!

MrsClown1 Tue 23-Apr-13 13:44:26

I really feel for you. My daughter, who is now 27, was exactly the same at that age. She tried to smash a casserole dish over my head, which was when I knew I had to contact the police and I did. She went to live with her father for a while as I really could not cope. She now lives in another town and we get on ok but I still bear the past in mind. Have you tried contacting the department of education as I did that and they sent an educational welfare officer out to see us. He didnt really do alot but it helped having someone else to talk to and know that I wasnt the only parent going through what was happening. Please dont blame yourself - THIS IS NOT YOUR FAULT, YOU ARE DOING YOUR BEST

It is so difficult for you. What area are you in OP.

Tortington Tue 23-Apr-13 13:54:25

I have started a few threads about troubles that I've had over the years- what annoys me to fuck is people commenting that do not have experience - but rather base their answers on themselves aged 13/14/15 and on..

whilst good intentions are great - there is a completely different outlook to be had as the parent of a difficult teenager.

In answer to therealfellatio's question. I absolutely would. We all have our lines in the sand and physical assault is mine.

I will not be beaten up by my husband, my daughter or my dog.

The rule I had that worked well is 'be in for x time of i'll lock the doors and windows'

and I did.

What you need to do is come to 'we are on the same page' agreement with your mum. If she is undermining you your just on quicksand

cantdoalgebra Tue 23-Apr-13 13:55:40

Being violent towards you is not acceptable - she is old enough to know what she is doing. If she stays with you must try to set boundaries with her and be strong. Does she have a phone? Who pays for it? If you do, take it away or cancel the agreement. Does she have an allowance? Stop it and only give money if and when her behaviour is acceptable. She will not take this well, but, well, tough. You must remain firm and "above" it.

Shagmundfreud Tue 23-Apr-13 13:57:54

Have been in touch with SS (they were notified the second time I called the police to deal with her violence). They don't want to know. She is not mentally ill, not depressed, is bright, has friends, has a big loving family. The consultant psychiatrist we saw (twice) at CAMHS doesn't think she needs more than family therapy.

Badvoc Tue 23-Apr-13 14:03:09

Then the next time it's the police.

Shagmundfreud Tue 23-Apr-13 14:05:29

I'm struggling, really struggling with the question - can she actually help any or all of this?

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