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bugme
Sep 13, 2010 5:24 AM CST
Name: Sharon
Barnesville, GA 8b
Fast forward about 18 months and lots of legal battles (strange how the prospect of $$$ causes this) later!! Wow, having just re-read all of these posts I'm amazed at the pain and strengths shown by everyone. Although the "sound of silence" is still too loud, life has gone on and caused even more "wrinkles" in my face.
In Sept. last year my youngest son was slapped with legal problems (of his own doing I might add) due to trying to take shortcuts in his business............seeming to forget every lesson we'd taught him during life, was incarcerated for a time and the case(s) will be going to trial late this year. A few months after that my daughter (37 at the time) admitted to being an alcoholic and was in rehab for some time and my SIL did his best holding things (3 children and a business) together, however, he had to declare bankruptcy because his business was tied to home building, well need I say more?? She is now doing much better and hasn't had a drop since, however, the damage done during all of this, who knows? How can people hide these character flaws for so long? I will say that there was alcoholism on both sides of the family and perhaps the tendencies are passed on. My life has progressed much as a "soap opera" during this time so, I hope someone else will chime in and make me feel not so "strange".
Approaching the 70th year I'm beginning to empathize with all of the "Maxine" emails sent to me.
Imagebsavage
Sep 13, 2010 9:31 AM CST
Name: Brenda
Dolores, Colorado
Hi again, Sharon. It is good to hear from you again. I recently heard an actor on a soap opera say in an interview that soap opera's are the 'dumbing down' of real life, in that real life is 'too unbelievable' sometimes. You're not strange... you are just living life. It is good that your daughter is recovering and doing well, and good for your son in holding things together. Any business connected to home building has at best, suffered, and at worst... ceased to exist. As I've probably mentioned somewhere here before, my husband's company was grading for new home construction, which served him and us very well for many years. However, we were an early casualty of the recession, and that business no longer exists. So, things change... time moves on, and we find other things that seem to matter so much more... quality of life, friendships, community, family. Always there are challenges, I can't think of a time when there weren't some kind of challenges... but strength and perserverance lead us to new blessings.

Wishing lots of new blessings to you... and soon!

Brenda
Imagetomatofreak
Sep 13, 2010 10:08 AM CST
Name: Alma
Phoenix & Cottonwood, AZ
USDA zone 9b, Sunset 13 & ??
Sharon, how fortunate you and your family are that your daughter admitted to alcoholism. That is a very hard admission to make and so many don't, leading to ruined health and lives. I'm lucky that it doesn't run in my family; however, I've certainly had my share of grief from it. I married one alcoholic and had several others in my life in one way or another. I hope your daughter is 'working the program' and stays healthy. Best wishes for a family recovery, too; I'm sure there's lots of hurt there.

Take care of yourself during the difficult times ahead. Your son's trial(s) are sure to be stressful on everyone, but you are not to blame. Our children are not our clones - and that can be a good thing or bad.
Alma
In matters of style, swim with the current; in matters of principle, stand like a rock. – Thomas Jefferson
ImageLouC
Sep 13, 2010 12:28 PM CST
Name: Christi Gibson
DeSoto Texas
zone 8a
I must agree with the actor. Must be the reason I don't go to movies or watch tv. DH was 70 yesterday and we had a small "tailgate" party of very close friends and watched the Cowboys do their usual. I am not a fan but he is and lives and dies by their games. It is a way of escaping for just a short while. We sold the Pace Arrow a couple of weeks ago and I am so relieved. It was an encyclopedia length list of "to do" items and dogged us everyday. It has been so terribly hot here this summer that my garden suffered. Going out in a jiff to do more damage control. The creed of the optimistic gardener "There's always next year."

Before my two grandsons foray into the drug world I was fairly sheltered. Not anymore. Am waay too familiar with several surrounding jails and courts. Even know the police by first names. We all have trials that we could never have imagined and yet, we continue. God had a plan for each of us even before we were conceived. We are being molded into His likeness by our reactions. I am trying very hard.

God love and bless each of you. I continue to pray for you and thank Him that He has put us together.

bugme
Oct 24, 2010 5:00 AM CST
Name: Sharon
Barnesville, GA 8b
The latest scene: My "rock" the oldest son, has moved to Florida with his family and I'll miss him greatly, however, another place to visit!! My daughter is still dry although her life is none too pleasant right now what with her own husband's business failing and declaring bankruptcy. He has depended on family to bail him out and so far, it has worked, but, there comes a time to admit defeat and move onto something else. Unfortunately, he has tried to "lay a guilt trip" on those he feels has not helped enough - namely me! Also staying away from us and not calling, in otherwords "shunning" us. She is caught in the middle and all I can do is continue to call and leave messages for her or keep sending "snail mail" and pray a lot! Thanks for listening.
Sharon
Imagetomatofreak
Oct 24, 2010 9:19 AM CST
Name: Alma
Phoenix & Cottonwood, AZ
USDA zone 9b, Sunset 13 & ??
Ah, the Blame Game. Sometimes I think it's America's favorite pastime. It's a self-defense mechanism. "I couldn't have been that ______ (fill in the blank: stupid, wrong, crazy, etc.); it's his/her fault." It's tough to face up to failing. It's harder still to see the 'failure' as an opportunity to learn, start over, the seed of future success. Maybe all the family 'help' really didn't help, but now your SIL feels entitled - and angry. However, you must realize it's not your fault.

My daughter is in a bad predicament right now. She married a drug addict - and expected him to change. He actually did finally clean himself up but he's still the same person, just drug-free. He plays the blame game really well, blaming her for his worst actions, including leaving her and moving in with another woman! In turn, she blames me for, well, anything she can think of to explain *her* choices. I'll admit to anyone that I never won a mother-of-the-year prize, but I'm not to blame and I don't accept the blame. All I can do for her is be there for moral and emotional support as she tries to get through a divorce financially intact. I can listen as she vents, but I can't 'fix' her problems.

I've always wondered why people watch those soap operas. Is it because they're so over the top, they make us feel better about ourselves - or because they mirror our own lives and make us feel 'normal'? I don't know, but it seems that my life has been enough of a 'soap' that I don't need to watch fictional accounts.

I think you have lots of company with all that's going on in your life. And lots of understanding. Take heart. I've been estranged from my daughter, too, at times. A little distance can be good. She will figure it out and come back when she's ready.
Alma
In matters of style, swim with the current; in matters of principle, stand like a rock. – Thomas Jefferson
grmesue
Oct 24, 2010 11:20 PM CST
Name: Sue
Southeast Arizona
I agree that you have lots of company. My brother quit speaking years ago and I have never known why. Suddenly he's back. I still don't know what set him off? Guess I maybe never will. Not sure it matters anymore and having him back in my life matters less than I expected it would. My daughters have made some poor "picks" and are both single Mom's. They do a pretty good job but the $$ are hard. I have a new policy. No, I'm sorry, I don't have the $ for _____ but you know I love you and if you can't make ends meet, I have room. They consider my home the middle of nowhere and will go to any lengths to keep from living here. 2 of my DGS do live with me and go to school. I love them all but can only strech me so far! I have finally reached the point where I can say, "'I'm so sorry, if this means I'm fired, you can pick up the keys anytime!" and I try to always live by Alma's previous quote: "When you wake up, get up. When you get up, do something!"
Imagebsavage
Nov 2, 2010 1:29 AM CST
Name: Brenda
Dolores, Colorado
It occurs to me that I started this forum, and so often I have absolutely no idea what to say or how to respond. That is why I am so thankful to those that offer compassion and insight, and so often share things that might be helpful.

I can say firsthand that losing a business and filing bankruptcy (as well as losing a home that you've cherished for years... not to mention the gardens that you created and grew) is very, very difficult. I don't know anyone that handles it perfectly, and many, many of us are going through it or have already gone through it. There is a lot of shame, a lot of embarassment, a lot of anger, a lot of sadness. I think there is a natural tendancy to pull yourself within, and to not be your best self, because you are going through a huge loss. Loss of who you think you are, of how you've defined yourself, and basically, coming to terms with failure. And you know what? Sometimes you can't control the economy, or whether you keep your job, or any number of things that you had always controlled quite well. It is earth shaking, bone rattling, scary as all hell.

So, I guess I want to say that for those of you that have people in your life who may not be behaving perfectly while facing severe adversity, please, reach out and be compassionate. Or, just let them get through it. Either way is okay, but don't write anyone off because they are going through a difficult time, even if it is financial. People spend their lives working towards success in whatever way they define it, and when that success gets pulled out from under you, it takes a little while to *re-define* what success means. I know that I have found great strength and hope from some friends who just have listened, and especially from those that have understood. (Usually those are the ones who have dealt with the same or similar).

Sending hugs to you all...

Brenda
ImageLouC
Nov 2, 2010 9:48 AM CST
Name: Christi Gibson
DeSoto Texas
zone 8a
You could never in the wildest dreams be called a "failure", Brenda. Your tenacity is an example for all us to follow. My baby sister is 14 years my junior, 54. She has been nothing but good all of her life, a blessing to all that know her. Her daughter is now 34 and has been type 1 diabetic since 5 years old and is now waiting for a kidney/pancreas transplant and has lost 80% of her sight...never complains and is a professional singer for a jazz band. The son is 32 and an addict, never held a job in his entire life. She has custody of his two boys, 8 and 9 years old. The mother abandoned them when they were just toddlers. Her husband has worked for Coca-Cola for 34 years. As of last week he has been terminated. Coke has hired a hatchet man and he is "down-sizing". Oddly, only those over 50 are being put out. He is #6 in his department. Age descrimination? Hell, yes. Will a lawyer fight Coke? Hell, NO. She is now the sole support and never complains. We look exactly alike when I was her age but we don't have the same disposition. I would be storming headquarters were it me. I don't believe there is a person who could actually claim that "life is fair".
How we each react to adversity is the test God is allowing. I would say you have made and A++.
Imagebsavage
Nov 6, 2010 11:51 AM CST
Name: Brenda
Dolores, Colorado
Christi, you make me cry, in a good way. Thanks for all the love you send. Your poor sister, what a lot of trauma to be going through. Fortunately, she has you to help see her through. YOU are a blessing! Sending loving and hopeful thoughts to you and your sister and her family...

Brenda

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