Detaching from a son

by Linda
(Alabama)

I am 56 and my son is 37….. He is my only son and I believed we shared a mutual love and respect for each other. I spent 7 years in Iraq sending money home to him to build a business that he and I could profit from. My son’s wife left him for the 4th time this time telling him the 10 month old baby was not his and took him and left the other 4 children with him. No one heard from her for about a month. We all suffered from not seeing our baby and wondered if we would as my son went through steps with a lawyer to get a divorce. He told me that he may take her back to keep all the kids together since she was going to go for joint since she did not want to pay child support. I had been supportive of his grief and grieving with him but when he told me that I told him that if he decided to take her back he would have to move out of my house. That if he could not let her go I could and I could not watch the kids go through this over and over. The hated her for not telling them goodbye that morning before they went to school and she left them, for abandoning them and for cheating on them and their father. For posting pictures of her and her baby’s father and the baby on face book as a happy family for all to see. The baby father is a black heritage and the baby had darker skin but we have some in our family with darker skin and figured he took after that part of the family. But this hurt the children deeply and when other people told them that the baby was black before and the kids denied it, now school mates were making fun of them. I always told them that even if it was true it was not his fault what his mother did and that he was in a good place because we could love him no matter what. About six weeks in to this my son lets the ex come home and all of a sudden it is like they were never apart. The kids are mad and don’t know what to think. The don’t respect her or trust her and now their father has lied to them and by telling them this time she would not come back and they were not allowed to tell her or him how they felt. The week before he stopped talking to me and we have a business together. I put about 300,000 dollars into the business so I would have a retirement and he would be able to support his family. I ran the financial end and he did the marketing and running of it. He quit giving me money to put in the back and I heard from the kids he was selling the business and moving to another state. I asked him about what I heard and he told me it was true. I told him I supported his moving and getting a new start in a new place and what I expected from the sell of the business. He looked at me point blank and told me it was his business and that I was not getting anything, he needed it to get to the other state. I was shocked and stayed calm and told him that he could not leave me with nothing when I spent 7 years in Iraq to support the financial end of the business. That he had to leave me something. He had not given me money for bills that were owed and that I was there for him when he needed me and that he had to leave me something. He told me that he would and that he would makes repairs in the house so that I could rent it out or sell it before he left and would be moved in 5 to 6 weeks, the kids were already taken out of school and records gotten. (it is summer) That his wife had a job there waiting on her.
During the following week, I tried to hold my head up and let it sink it that it could not be true that he would sell all I worked for and leave me high and dry with nothing. He became more angry toward me during this next week. He wanted to use my car to take her out to clubs (which they did not do before) he did not drink and he was spending money lavishly on that and I needed money for bills piling up. He told me I would get it but would not tell me when. He got extremely angry with me because he wanted to use my car to take his wife out and when I told him no he threatened me and told me I better be careful or I would not get a thing. He would not give me the key to my vehicle and so I had to get my spare and get it. I was so hurt. I told him he could use it to take his wife to work and bring her home or important errands but not to party in. He had about 6 people piled in it the week before and I was worried about him wrecking it and then I would be in a bind. So he told me that he needed to pick his wife up from work and did not come home til 4:30 the next morning. I went to get it about 7 to take the kids to church and a ball game and he would not get up out of bed to find the keys for me and did not put gas in it. I knew then that he was really going to hang me out to dry. The next day my mother who was visiting went home and I went to my sisters. I have been sick to my stomach and looked up detaching from a narcissist. I have written affirmations and try remember them. My heart races and I feel like throwing up… I joined a small group at church this Wed on restoration and recovery from disappointments or disasters. I could not share… It is to painful. My good friend, my only son that I trusted with everything could do this to me. He has called to use my car but I remind him he as a truck to use it and he starts to threaten me and I tell him I cannot communicated with him like this and hang up. He told me last night when I went to pick the 14 year old up to take to church with my daughters 16 years old and my 17 year old nephew that she could not go (over the phone he was not home) then he called me and told me that we were not to communicate with the 14 year old daughter any more. I had called to get the password to sprint to get a new phone and still use that number since I had put that number on job applications and he told me that I would have that phone that he would not drop it since it was a family plan and only 10 bucks a month. This week I was at Bass Pro talking to HR and they went to put their number in my phone by calling and I had no service. It was disconnected. I don’t know why I believed him after all that has happened. Habit I guess.. but I have spent the past week and a half at my sisters and the past few days I have cried every day like a river that won’t stop. I really can’t afford to grieve.. I have to find a job and I can not get my mind on job hunting like I should. I am very qualified to work but am afraid I will break down and start crying and that would not be helpful. I feel so much pain and sick and tired and get out of breath easily. God has brought me through painful times before and I know I have to grieve but I can’t afford to and need to get to work. My mother said I need to separate the job hunting from the personal but I don’t know how as hard as I try. I am so very sad. I love my son so much and it is so hard for me to believe that he could do this to me. I feel used, lied to and manipulated. I could have saved money for myself and yet he always had one more thing that would would make the company better or more profitable for us both. I try not to think of the things I should or should not have done with affirmations and today cleaning my sisters frige I cried because I am tired of hurting and everything being such an effort.

Comments for Detaching from a son

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Jun 17, 2012
More Detaching
by: Judith

Linda, I have read your story here again and think your son may have begun substance abuse too. It's because of the sudden change in his mood towards you. Becoming angry, and threatening. I fear he could hurt you physically too. I know it's hard and painful but you must stop doing for him and giving him anything. He has to know with 100% certainty that he can in no way disrespect you .. It's a price he has to pay. You on the other hand must stay strong and vigilant in your affirmations. It is for his own good and yours in reality.

I pray I will live to see thim change before I die....ever hopeful, but realistic he may never. He didn't even acknowledge me on Mother's day. As in the past he always waited until the end of the day to call me ...like it was a burden to have to. The same with my birthday and chirstmas. He told me he didn'tlike to have to do things because society set up that you should. Take, Take but never give but very little back. I saw him through Juvenile hall when younger, picking him up from jail for traffice offense, and seeing him in jail for spousal abuse. Helping pay the bills for traffic tickets and rent money needed, and car payments needed.
He blames me for all his problems. I told him I wasn't the one who made the bad choices. I get no respect for all of the all the worry and helping him when he needed so I will not help anymore.

His birthday is coming up next month and I will not send a card or money like I used to. I'll let him see how it feels to feel forgotten or unimportant to someone. It's a battle and once in a while Ifind I go back to thinking the old way and fell anxiety over his situation but I have to remember those names he has called me more than once and then I become strong again. I even had the tumblers changed on my doors. Costs about 50.00 per door. It's worth the peace of mind . I don't fear him but I will not let him have the key to my door eer agin. I am completely alone and will try to do things without ever having to call him unless I get so sick that I have to.

I love my son and cry for the loss . I am the disappointed parent of a selfish, abusve narcissistic man/child.

We must put peace and order back in our lives. The tail can't wag the dog.

Take care Linda. Stay on track.

Jun 17, 2012
detaching from a son
by: Doreen England U.K.

Dear Linda,
I am sorry for what you are going through with your son. I am going through an ordeal with my son and feeling like dying and then I read your sad story.
Like the other response said. Get a Lawyer and fight for your rights. Don't walk away with your son winning.
You need to set boundaries. Don't let your son intrude on your space. Get key people in place and get as many people standing with you so your son sees you have support and he can't bully you.
I am facing the loss of my husband of 44 years and also my son who walked away on the day of the funeral due to unresolved family issues. My story is too long and this space wouldn't accept the length of my story so I have had to delete this. Most families have unresolved issues and they always surface at a funeral causeing chaos and then all the kids want is the material things that are left. I am left all alone with my pain. No husband to share the pain and not wanting to go on another day with it all.
I do know some of the places I went wrong, but can't resolve my pain. I carried too much of my son's pain when he had 2 nervous breakdowns, and I did too much for my children. I gave all of me to everyone whilst also nursing a husband with cancer for 3 years 39 days which wasn't a problem for me as I loved him to bits and would do anything for him. But I am depleted. I am tired. I have nothing left in me to go on. I have to sort out a whole garage of goods Steve did not get time to sort out because he was too ill with cancer. Plus I have to sort out all the details as Executix so it is a mountain I am finding hard to climb even it is one step at a time it is nevertheless a mountain.
As a parent Linda you also gave too much of yourself. As parents we do. We don't know we are injuring ourselves but we don't realize till we are injured. I get the impression you are all on your own without a husband or male role model e.g. brother, brother-in-law, uncle or anyone who could stand up to your son. Son's try to rule the roost (home) they dominate, and manipulate because they can. Make sure with support your son CAN'T. Best wishes for the future and I hope it all works out for you with the correct people in place helping you as you should not fight this battle on your own. DON'T QUIT. You will get your strength back and your dignity. Not to mention also your RESPECT.

Jun 16, 2012
Me Too
by: Judith in California

Linda, what a horror story! I feel for you . I too had to do that with my son but under different circumstances. What he is doing is Parental Abuse in the worst form. He threatnes you and manipulates you through intimidation. Get tough and realize you did your best and like my son no matter what I did it was ever going t o be enough in his sociopathic, narcissistic mind. He called me the most vile names (B & C) I had to finally tell him one day "leave ! because I will not tolerate the verbal abuse from you or anyone else ever again! You will not tell me what you will or won't do in my house ever gain. You will show me the respect I'm due for what I've done for you, sacrificed for you and gone through for you OR you can stay away from me Period".Love be damned! I told him I was done with doing anything for him. Done paying his phone minutes, done helping with food and gas money. Done buying him anything . HE is a grown man of 48 and he will do for himself from that day forward. We have not spoken since and he has dropped all e-mail and Skype accounts so I don't know if he is alright or not but He mad a choice too.

It hurts but I lost my husband of 35 years 21 months ago and my son said "get over it Mom he's dead and I'm glad. He thought I was going to let him live with me since he is staying rent free in a friends home. I told him there is now way we could ever live together under the circumstances. I pray for hm every night but I will not let him in my house again unless he can be respectful.

A lawyer should be involved in the selling of the busness and making sure you get what is rightfully yours. Do NOT LET YOUR SON RUN THE SHOW LINDA! He is not going to rip you off. GET A LAWYER NOW! IT's just good business sense. Get all your records of evidence together of your finacial dels and call that Lawyer.
Tell your son you don't respond to threats or manipulation.
I know it's hard but you fought for our Country now fight for yourself just as hard.

Please go online and download "Letting Go of Our Adult Children" by Arleen Harper.

I will pray for you and hope you take heed to what I've said here.

Your Son has to be dealt with as a business partner and the selfish abusive person he has become.

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