Saturday, October 1, 2011

What Do I Do?

I want answers that I am going to have to get for myself: being a parent is really hard.

What do I do? I am asking myself and my husband that all the time. Do I play endless taxi? Do I give them $? Do I let them spend the night? Have friends spend the night here? Go to the mall? Skate City? Take a nap? Wait to do homework or chores until later? Get on facebook or youtube? Hang out?

My anxiety and panic have crept into all of my once strong parenting nooks and crannies and have me questioning EVERYTHING. I want to raise strong, independent, resilient, creative, and humble children. I know that if I give them everything they want, I am taking so much away from their learning, but somehow I still get left with so much guilt.

Right now with Destin I feel like my decisions are so life or death, literally. He has been experiencing more depression than usual and was pulled out of class on Friday because he seemed "down." Further conversation with the teacher revealed he has been having some suicidal ideation and thoughts of worthlessness. We found out earlier in the week that his smoking cigarettes is causing his red blood cell count to be elevated and his blood is thicker than normal, putting him at greater risk for heart attack, stroke, or blood clots. This was very distressing information for him- as well it should be- he is only 13! Some of his thinking was: If I am going to be sitting around waiting to have a heart attack, maybe I should just kill myself so that I know when its going to happen instead of being in fear of death all of the time.

Proof to me that his mind is not mature enough to be processing some of the choices he is making and it makes me very afraid for him. I am afraid that at this low time in his life, that either the unimaginable worst could happen; he could succumb to his depression and take his life, or he could think life is already as low as it can get, why not try A,B, or C substance and see if it makes me feel better and end up abusing a substance to make him feel better.

So now I am walking around on eggshells, afraid for him and unsure how to help. I am checking in with him, and on him frequently. I am trying to balance his time with friends and with us, and reassuring him he is very loved and needed and that we are here for him while he works on feeling better. I am asking some questions about what he is up to, but not making any judgmental comments. Most of all I am just worried ALL of the time and afraid I could say or do the wrong thing that could make his situation worse.

Having all of these intense feelings during such a hard time for the family is really hard on me, especially because I have my own symptoms of panic and instability. I also have an 11 year old daughter who is interested in boys and is testing every boundary there is, and a busy 3 year old that both need my time, attention, good judgement, and parenting. Oh how I wish I had a parent or grandparent to pick up the phone and call and ask for help. Instead I just keep finding myself asking, "What do I do?'



  1. You are doing great with destin. you'll get on with it, i believe. All the best.

  2. Please get some professional help for your son!

  3. My son is already regularly seeing a psychiatrist and a therapist. He is medicated and he has been meeting with a substance abuse counselor as well. We just completed 2 months of intensive home based therapy with two counselors spending 8 hours a week with our family. Short of Day treatment, I am not sure I can get him much more help.

  4. Bless your heart! I hear you. Today I have no advice....other than follow your heart. It sounds like you are a wise mom who knows exactly what to do....buts its not always easy to *just do it.*

    Also, thank you for your wonderful comments on my blog. I so appreciate hearing from you! It is huge to know that none of us are alone.