I've got situations I dont' know how to handle, or what to do....I need opinions, I need some direction.
I've got the following....
1) A severely depressed sister, who lost her son 8 years ago and her husband 26 years ago, who is on anti-depressants without any type of therapy. SHe is on the verge of a break down.
2) A severely depressed sister in law, who was abused as a child and was in a very abusive relationship, which ended tragically when her fiance died, he drowned and the body was never found (unfortunately, it ended a relationship that was violent, he almost killed her 2 weeks prior to the drowning)
3)A severely depressed nephew, who does nothing is 28 and lives with his parents and is going to cause them to divorce and refuses help
4) A best friend currently in the hospital receiving ECT after many years of therapy several times a week, and every anti-depressant on the face of the earth.
I don't know how to help them...My friend, she's getting help right now, which I think is working.
My sister....she refuses anything and thinks because her husband and son died, she isn't worthy of living a normal life and should continue sitting and grieving, and not helping herself or doing anything for herself, though she'll tell you she needs help and she'll tell you "she's done everything possible"
My sister in law....she's home now, unable to work due to panic attacks, which are brought on by a feeling of no self worth and not being able to "live up to everyones expectations"...she never got over the drowning, and though she' since married a wonderful man, who is unbelievably supportive...she still thinks the other is coming back...and she is stressed beyond belief about money, and can't work, but can't stop spending (the husband too)...I'm watching her fall apart....
My nephew...he is 28, lives with his parents, got violent las tyear with is mother, was removed from the house, I took him with us hoping to talk to him and get him to see what is going on, he went back home, couldn't go back to the hosue due to a restraining order, was living in a hotel, getting help from the state, but though is mother was not supposed to see him, she saw him daily, gave him money, food, brought him out to eat, etc...and eventually after about a month..ended up back in the house, living in a room, on teh computer all of the time, and won't work, won't help around the house, won't do anything, and my sister doesn't see it....she'll agree it isn't right, but just doesn't do anything to get him help or get on with his life. He is going to cause a divorce between her and her husband, her husband is stressed to the point he's physically sick...works constantly, won't eat....etc...
I DON'T KNOW WHAT TO DO....
How can I help?
How can I be supportive, but not encourage them all not getting help? Everytime I mention doing something, they say "you don't know, you haven't been here"....
I'm a very strong person....and they all say that, but on the other hand they all resent me for it...I was a mother at 17, married at 21, bought our home at 21, had a great job, which I left due to stress and am now self employed and doing well....kids are now almost 16 and other is 7..I do what i have to do and though I know I've been through my own bouts of depression, and gotten through them...I feel myself like I shouldn't succeed and I should fail and then maybe they will all respect me for that (my best friend is the only one who takes my advise and lets me help).
Not sure what advice to give you about helping them, but I have some advice for you I myself was a mom at 17, and my kids are now 15 and 8, so I know going through that is a task in and of itself. Don't EVER EVER EVER give up what you worked for to "help" someone else. Don't you let them drag you down. I know you want to help them, and that says a lot about your character, but if you think that failing will make them respect you more, you're wrong. It won't bring them up, it will only bring you down. I'm currently fighting an addiction, and am in no way, shape or form a pillar of success, but it wouldn't help me at all if people who were trying to help me decided to use drugs so they could completely understand what I'm going through. All you can do is offer to help them, you cannot make them and you cannot do it for them. And don't you ever feel guilty for making something positive out of your life. Just by reading your post i can tell that it wasn't handed to you, you earned that.
Your right, I have (we, my husband and I) busted our tails to do what we've done and we've done it on our own. We are resented for it, but I've let that go. I no longer "hide" if I buy something, or do something, I have nothing to be ashamed of, and I am finally now understanding that. Our kids are resented by family because they do good in school, especially our daughter, she'll be 16 soon and is a honor student and highly active in sports, where my nephews didn't have the guidance or support and aren't doing as well (we used to take our nephew to practices etc, so he could play sports before we had our son-my nephew is 15 now, and our son is 7), so that was an issue, and now I'm even feeling as though I've failed there...my 15 yo nephew says he's quitting school as soon as he's 16....while our daughter wants to go into something medical in college. It's a mess...I did what i said when I was 17 and had her.....I wanted her life to be better than mine, and it is by far better than when I was her age, I don't think I should be resented for it.
I do need to take care of myself, but it's very hard for me to just not do anything. I had said to another family member yesterday that maybe I did just need to let go, before I end up so stressed, I break down....that caused a HUGE issue, "I don't care anymore" "I think I'm perfect" "I'm giving up" but I tried to explain that i can't do it, they need to do it themselves, for themselves.
My mother was an alcoholic my whole childhood, she's now sober for 9 years, but I had to stop helping her and let her crash and eventually that pushed her to get sober, so I know what it's like, but I feel so bad for not trying to help more.
Beating addiction is very hard. I applaud you for at least trying. I don't know what it is your dealing with as to what you are addicted to, but we've got 2 friends, one on the verge of divorce (I was their matron of honor) because her husband is addicted to vicoden (had back surgery 2 years ago and on pain pills ever since), and is now doing coke, and another who was so addicted to oxy, the docs figure in 2 years he swallowed over $500,000 worth of pills (street value). The one addicted to oxy is doing okay, he's been "sober" for 2 months and has a baby on the way, and he's trying to do it on his own as he doesn't want to take methadone, he's affraid he'll get addicted to that too.
Take it day by day. I'll keep you in my thoughts....hoping for the best for you!
Siblings rivary is not abnormal but still may be you should keep a distance from your relatives who are jealos that your kids are doing better.
Jealosy is a very dangerous emotion, sometimes you shouldn't share things or keep a distance to avoid it.
In terms of helping I was dealing with people in my family the more I help then less they will do and they won't even do what they could of done if they can put it on my shoulders. In addittion to that no consideration for me what so ever and blaming me for everything what is no perfect in there lifes, pouring dirt on me if front of relatives.
m1e1b1s1 you sound like you have a bit of a toxic family. Congratulations on all of your successes! I can't believe your family had a fit for you saying that you need to let go. You've been through this before when you let your mother crash and you saw the success that followed that. You know what to do, let it go. I would keep a distance from a toxic family and not allow them to rope you into any unhealthy dramas. Take care of yourself and your family. You have done all that you can do and now you are just beating your head against the wall. Frequently when a dysfunctional person is not on the road to recovery and they get support, it is enough support to keep them off the road to recovery. If they lose the support they switch roads. Good luck to you.