For the past six years my son has brought nothing but problems and heartache. He constantly lies, takes cannabis, and has been in trouble with courts through being out of his mind with drink or drugs, e.g. stealing. From the age of 14 so many valuables "went" from the house, it broke my heart, but that eventually stopped a couple of years ago. I've put him out of the house quite a few times but taken him back again, to my cost. His behaviour has started to deteriorate again and this past week has finished me. He blatantly denied taking a bottle of champagne I'd been given as a Christmas present until I found the cork, then merely smirked and offered to replace it; I discovered he'd borrowed �50 from a relative to fund his New Year night out, which I feel I have to repay as they won't get it back from him; his bedroom was always like a squat which I refused to tidy, but 2 nights ago I discovered a mouse running around when I gave in and attempted to clear a path through his clothes and dirty dishes, and today I've discovered he hasn't turned up for work for the past 2 days. He was on his final warning and so has now lost his job. I have tried absolutely everything possible and I truly mean everything including attempting to talk with him, "hard love", kicking him out, reasoning, exasperation, etc. Nothing has changed and I am worn out. I've gone through so many emotions over these years of failure, confusion, fear, and loss, and although I've reasoned with myself and friends have helped me understand I'm not to blame for his behaviour, the feelings of somehow causing this mess won't go away. At the time of writing, I've no idea where he is and financially he is a walking disaster and can't cope on his own. He is/was intelligent but got into very bad company when he was 13 and he seems to be hanging around with many of these people again. Therefore I can't get rid of the fear that a policeman is going to come to my door soon to tell me he's dead. Irrational I know, but it won't go away. He's been offered help so many times in the past. I'm frequently told that I should have disowned him years ago but it really isn't that simple when it's your own child. The stress is awful and as I have a high-powered job with its own stresses I feel as if my life holds absolutely nothing for me. I am not suicidal by any means, but this constant struggle just to keep my life together is soul-destroying. My apologies for using this email as a means of releasing some of this stress but it's late at night and I just felt so alone and helpless. Toni
I'm sorry you're feeling so alone and helpless. While you have good friends who reassure you that you're not responsible for your son's actions, I appreciate that sometimes you feel lonely, guilty and unsupported. Counselling could be just what you need.