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Teen in a Controlling relationship ?

(3 Posts)
Dazed321 Mon 23-Jan-17 19:39:29

I'm writing this a broken woman but I'll try to keep it as brief as possible.

19 year old son - his father and I split 9 years ago but co-parented. Unbelievably, sons father - who had him during the week due to my work - let my son stay off school for pretty much a year. Neither said a word to me. Shamefully, the first I knew was when I got a surprise call from social services. About this time my son confessed how awful he felt about himself. He self harmed and asked me for help. Doctor , psychology followed. He went back to school and was welcomed by a core group of friends. All was well. For a while. He got a girlfriend then promptly dumped her for another girl. And then it all went downhill. The girl in question was homeless - her mother kicked her out (not for the first time), the friend she was staying with kicked her out and lo and behold, my son's father let her move in there and son and her were living together in every sense. From pretty much day one. One by one friends "disappeared". The girl my son had dumped spread malicious allegations about him and he dropped out of school.

New girlfriend lived off my son's father (and me to a lesser extent) without a care. I was the lone voice saying it wasn't right. Eventually school pulled their finger out and the local authority got her a flat within a supported accommodation block. She refused to stay on her own so my son moved in too, despite it being against the rules. Bit by bit, I saw less and less of him. We had always been close and it hurt. It turns out that she would tell him to see me then give him grief if he did.

So. No friends, distanced from me. Fast forward. She kicks him out a couple of times over ridiculous things. He starts college and she freaks out when he adds female college friends on Facebook- so he removes them. They see no one outwith the relationship. He tells me she loses it over nothing. He does the cooking and cleaning - even if he's been at college all day and she's been at home. She kicked him out because he went to college when she was feeling poorly. And because he brushed his teeth before he went...... I found his college notebook and she'd scrawled over the front of it "Don't speak to me. Don't talk to me. I have a girlfriend ". I was horrified. I tried to tell him that it wasn't healthy but neither of them were having any of it. He got a part time job that fit in with college, she started a full time job weekdays but when it turned out he worked most weekends, guess who binned their job?

Which takes us to now. 2 weeks ago my son was really poorly. I had never seen him so ill. His health had been bad for weeks, which wasn't like him, and it was one thing after another. They had been at my son's father's house for the weekend (free food) and had missed the bus to the next village on the Monday morning. They turned up at mine asking for a lift on my way to work. Of course I said yes or she'd have been late for work. My son looked dreadful and said he felt sick. I dropped her off and she was clearly pissed off that he wasn't going to walk her the 5 min stroll from the drop off point to her work (and then walk the mile to her flat). I dropped him at the flat. He'd thrown up when he got in the door. That evening he turned up at mine - it was over. She'd kicked off that he'd been too poorly to walk her to work or go to a meeting about her housing (she had been offered a council house- gold dust round here - and was creating a stink because she wanted it fully carpeted and furnished before she would move in). He ended it. He went to the doc the next day to be told he had severe tonsillitis- that was hot on the heels of a bad ear infection..... 2am the next night he phoned and asked if I could come get him from his father's house as he was really upset about the break up. I did. I'm his Mum and he wanted me. So I went (it's only 5 mins away). He told me that she was so controlling and would scream at him, tell him what a shit boyfriend he was. He admitted to kissing another girl the day after the break up because he was sad and wanted to make himself feel better. Sigh. We spoke. I told him that she had issues she needed to work through, that this insecurity and possessiveness wasn't healthy. He agreed. 24 hours later he messages her to confess to the kiss. She posts it on Facebook for all to see. From that moment on, he's become a different person. He posted the most degrading lament on Facebook saying what a terrible person he is, how she's perfect, he's awful, how he'll do anything to get her back. It was dreadful. I begged him To take it down but no.

Now her mother is involved. My son bought flowers for her mother to apologise for kissing another girl. What the actual..... He's being vile to me and his father and has told us he's moving a couple of hundred miles away to where she came from because he hates it here and there's nothing for him. We are terrible parents because all we do is drip poison about this girl. There is NOTHING we can say or do. She has isolated him from everyone. He will be moving to a strange place with two women who have a track record for irrational behaviour and kicking people out. And he apears to have nothing but contempt for me.

I'm sorry for the long post but I'm broken. I haven't eaten in nearly a week and am on tranquillisers because I work with girls like this one and I know the life he'll have. I know he has to walk his own path but he's not the person I've known for 19 years. I've let him know I will always be here for him but got nothing but contempt. Has anyone been through anything like this? She's emotionally abusive and hugely manipulative but my son feels we're manipulating him. I just don't know how to cope with the grief. I've always tried to encourage him to be his own person and he was doing well at college. But that's going to end. Please believe this isn't just an over protective mother - this girl is damaged. No father on the scene (4 kids, 4 fathers, none present), uprooted by her mother every couple of years - so I get the insecurity. I really do. From day one she quietly set out to drive a wedge between my son and I and now she has, quite spectacularly. She's the only one he will listen to now. No one else because he has no one else. I'm list.

misshelena Wed 25-Jan-17 13:27:12

So sorry OP that you are going through such a terrible time. I don't have advice really, just that you need to take care of yourself. Maybe there is someone you can talk to? Or a therapist? I really don't know what else you can do for ds... I hope he realizes soon that he needs to get out of there. I think you should periodically text him to remind him that you are thinking of him, missing him, there for him as always. Don't talk about the girl though, that will just turn him off to your message. He already knows where you stand re. the girl.

Peebles1 Wed 25-Jan-17 19:54:00

I agree with misshelena. Keep in touch with him, concentrate on your relationship with him. Try to avoid slagging her off, try to remain neutral. I've been through similar (we're both on another thread), so I'm not meaning to be patronising and I know too well how hard it is. I tried to accept that my DD was with her bf, even though I felt as you do. I had as little to do with him as possible, but if I did see him I was polite. I looked after myself, detached, felt better able to cope when I accepted the situation and faced the fact that they might end up together.

Anyway, they split up and one thing that sounds similar to your DS is that she finished it a couple of times before the final one (I hope it's the final one!! It was only 6 months ago!). I think once they've done it, it shows they know it's not right and hopefully they'll have the strength to do it again.

If you keep the lines of communication open, he'll be able to come back to you when it all goes pear shaped. You mention them both having issues, and that could be a bond between them. It was with my DD and her bf. She said they 'got' each other. I said I understood, but she needed someone looking after her instead of the other way round. It was detrimental to her own mental health to be supporting him.

Anyway, I'm so sorry you're going through this. I was so sad too, I worried about her ruining her future and wasting her teenage years. I so so hope things improve for you soon - at least in your relations with your DS if nothing else. One step at a time. And look after yourself - this is important! cakeflowers

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