As Sarah and I drove the long haul back home from Charleston, I found out that my son had arranged with his massage therapy school to take a leave of absence. He had skipped class all week (while we were traveling), but had pretended to be at class every night, going out around 5:00 and returning home at 11:00 on Tuesday, and at 1:30 a.m. on Wednesday and Thursday.
He was only a month away from finishing and couldn’t stick with it for one more month. I was furious. He said he’d arranged with the school manager to finish the clinical portion of the class starting in January and finishing in February.
I had never been so angry. He was lying to us once again, not meeting his obligation to himself and to us, and, on top of that, drinking again. I told Mike he should throw him out of our house immediately, but he said our soon wanted to finish the course and he wanted to give him the opportunity to do it. In my eyes, he was a liar and unreliable, and I thought he simply didn’t want to finish the course and actually have to work for a living. I believed he just wanted more time to laze round doing nothing and drinking. I didn’t believe he would actually ever finish the course (I would prove to be right). I told Mike I was going to start looking for a job abroad, maybe Saudi Arabia, just so I could move out. I said it would be either our son or me.
After hanging up the phone with Mike, Sarah and I still had a long drive ahead and I was boiling over the whole way home. We hardly said a word to each other. She said she could see Mike’s side and my side. I said Mike keeps enabling our son and thus he has no burning desire to start taking responsibility for his life.
I didn’t want to take it out on Sarah, but I was so angry I couldn’t think about anything else. I told Sarah I was cancelling our Thanksgiving plans, that I refused to do anything at all.
After dropping Sarah off in Richmond, I seriously considered getting a hotel in Fredericksburg and not going home at all. I drove around in Fredericksburg for a while and then got on the phone with Mike.
I said it never mattered what I thought, that I had no voice or say in what happened. I didn’t want to live in the same house with our son anymore, so he would have to go, or I would. I said I was going to be utterly silent when I returned home. I wasn’t going to speak to either of them until he was out of our house.
I was yelling on the phone. I hadn’t been so furious in years. Finally, I decided I’d go ahead home. When I walked in the house, our son was out (likely drinking with friends) and Mike was sitting on the couch reading. I took all my stuff upstairs without speaking to him. I stayed in my room the rest of the night and we never spoke. I only asked Mike where our son was, and I said, “So you’re allowing him to be out drinking? It’s so ridiculous.”
I was so furious, I must have taken two Valium over the course of the night. The tension in the house was thick and dark. I tried to figure out how I could leave.
Mike had apparently told our son I wouldn’t be speaking to either of them. I didn’t have a voice in the house anyway, so what was the point?
Earlier, Mike had told him I was considering moving out. Our son said he didn’t want me to move out or he just looked sad about it, I don’t remember which.
This week in Charleston, which was supposed to be a nice relaxing escape with my daughter, who I mistakenly thought enjoyed my company, turned out to be one of the darkest times in my entire life. I realized that not anyone in my family cared about me. Sarah didn’t enjoy being with me. Our son hated me and would always hate me and Mike didn’t give a shit what I thought about anything. He made unilateral decisions and didn’t care about how awful and miserable it was for me to be trapped in the house with our son day after day. Nothing I felt meant anything to anyone. I felt withdrawn and isolated from everyone in the family.
It had been a long time since I’d had such a bleak outlook on life and felt so hopeless and disconnected.
On Sunday after I returned, I wrote to all by siblings: “Hi everyone. I know I threw out an invitation to host Thanksgiving this year. I’m not sure anyone planned to come anyway, but I think it’s best if I cancel the invitation. I’m sorry to say I just don’t have the heart for it this year. I hope you all enjoy your holiday! Love you all!”
My sister wrote to ask what was up and I said “Problems with A. What else?” As they asked for more, I said “The same old issues ad infinitum. I don’t think they will ever end.”
What a miserable week. I’ll forever think of Charleston as a dark and gloomy place, a microcosm of the misery of my life.
After I returned home from Charleston, South Carolina, I wrote a number of posts about my trip:
- on journey: an encounter with edward hopper on the way to charleston
- on journey: a drive from richmond to charleston
- charleston: fort sumter & king street
- charleston: the battery, the old slave mart museum, & magnolia plantations
- charleston: the charles pinckney national historic site
- charleston: fort moultrie, sullivan’s island, & a shopping spree on king street
This was one of the most miserable travel experiences of my life. Lately it seemed I couldn’t go anywhere without my son and his problems following me.
*Friday, November 15, 2019*
I don’t know what to say, I just feel so sad for you all. It’s a year ago, and I know much water has passed under the bridge since – but still … I wish you all well.
Thank you so much for your good wishes. I don’t know what will become of our son, but he’s still in Nicaragua for now. He seems to be rather uncommunicative but that’s fine for now.
Let’s hope no news is good news.
I hope so! Thanks, Anabel. 🙂
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So sorry to hear about your challenging experience. Best wishes, and hope things have been looking up.
Thank you so much, Katie. Yes, it’s been a multi-year challenge, and I’m glad to have a break for now as our son is in Nicaragua. He doesn’t communicate much, but hopefully he’ll find his way and we will hear from him when he’s ready.
A sad time in your life Cathy. Like Anabel it is hard to know what to say. You have had another bumpy year too with the health issues and your both your sons making some difficult decisions, but at least you seem to have made up with Mike and had some decent holidays. Wishing you a better and more harmonious future, though at the moment it is looking a bit iffy on the election! I’m not sure how much more of Trump you can take…
There’s not much anyone can say, Jude. It is a tough situation and there isn’t much we can do. He’s an adult and we have no control over him. The only control we have is to NOT enable him, and that is what Mike and I argue about. For now, it’s good he’s in Nicaragua as we don’t hear much from him. I enjoy the physical and emotional distance!
As for Trump, he’s been voted out but as you know, he is still not conceding and is trying to hold on to power. He is a disgusting piece of sh!t! What I cannot fathom are the 72 million people who voted for him. That sickens me and makes me ashamed to be an American.
I really hope Trump goes, he’s evil. And like you I can’t understand why so many voted for him. There are a lot of stupid people and seeing them protesting armed to the teeth makes me worry about the state of your country. Let’s hope Biden can bring some calm, if he lives long enough.
He is evil incarnate, and we can’t get rid of him soon enough, in my opinion. There are so many stupid people in America. I worry too, Jude. I keep thinking, where can we escape to if he somehow holds on to power? Even if Biden doesn’t live long enough, we have Kamala to back him up.
It’s so cold up there….. I’d so much rather live in Europe!
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More difficult though. Still now that Biden is in charge (he is isn’t he?) things may be better in the US. Hope you are keeping well and that your family are too.
I’m sure it is more difficult for us to live in Europe. As for Biden, no he is not in charge, not until he’s officially sworn in on January 20. We can hardly wait for that day, because Trump is trying every possible trick to overturn the election. We are becoming a banana republic here! We are counting the days: As of right now: 48 days, 6 hours, and 58 minutes! We’re keeping well; just tired of the last four years of hell, and the last year especially….. Thanks, Jude. 🙂
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