March 2006


  family02     I feel at a loss with my relationship with Jeff. We aren’t friends, and all this time I thought we had grown into that. I don’t mean a friend in the same sense as his aged friends or school friends. I guess I expected him to have some sense of liking. I am not just his money supply, or other parental needs supplier, but a person he can share a small amount of time with. He came home unexpectedly and I was so happy. I haven’t seen him since Christmas and having him just show up out of the blue at the door was heart warming. A few long hard hugs and he was off. Off with his friends, off with his life. He didn’t stay around long, not at all. He visited with me for about an hour, and of course in that time said hurtful things (though I don’t think he noticed they were hurtful as he was just kidding). He left to do his usual kid (or young adult thing) with his friends. I knew that would include drinking but didn’t say anything other than “Remember you can’t come back here drunk, or even if you have drank.” I just can’t deal with it anymore, and told him so. I guess he did what I told him and didn’t come home. I was upset because he didn’t call and let me know he wasn’t coming home; honestly I don’t think that is too much to ask. I left the front door unlocked when going to bed because I wasn’t sure even had a house key. When I talked to him the next day (around noon) and asked where he was he responded “at a friends.” I told him he should have called to say he was staying out so I wouldn’t worry. His response, “I don’t have to call in Mom I am an adult.” Ok, so on the surface that is true. He is an adult and can do as he wishes, but really common curstesy should be practiced. A telephone call so a parent doesn’t wait up isn’t too much to ask. Even at 20 he isn’t above and beyond a phone call. I know I would call my father, even at my age (41) if I was at his home and decided to stay out or change my plans just so he wouldn’t worry. Jeff isn’t in a place where he really understands feelings other than his own, hurtful to my heart at the moment yet, but this too shall pass.

Basically he has spent a very little time with me and the time he has spent has not been exactly deep or even loving. I know he loves me and I him, but I don’t get a sense he likes me. When we talk he doesn’t want to hear what I have to say because I am the voice of reason. He is talking about things in this fantasy state of mind and I am the other side of the coin – “what if” – He sees that as negative. I see it as necessary. His choices aren’t great. His drinking is still a factor, and his accountability is even lower than ever. If something bad happens to him (i.e. a ticket for drunk in public, etc) he blames it on bad luck and not poor choices. I have to be able to let go; to really let go. I have to be ok with him saying hi and bye and knowing that his unwillingness at this time to share time with me is not a reflection on how much he loves me. I have to know that at age 20 he doesn’t want to stay home with dear old mom. I feel stupid for feeling this way, as I understand what age 20 is, and even though I was married with a child by this time in my life I didn’t want to be accountable to parents, or have to change what I wanted to do because of them.I have to let go of what I think it should be and accept what is.

believetag     It is never-ending with Jeff, or I allow it to be. Either way it reaches deep inside me and fills me with hurt and anxiety. He's 20-years-old, but doesn't act like he is responsible for himself. He's a Marine, a man out on his own, yet expect the mother to come to his rescue time and time again. I just don't know when I will say enough is enough – and actually mean it.

I wish I meant it today – I know I am not there yet. I have to believe that I will be there someday, in an emotional place to stop enabling my son, or he will grow out of this stage of life. Sadly, I don't think he will stop drinking. For some it is a rites of passage thing, for Jeff it is an alcoholic thing.