Hey AC gang.

I’m back on here and I’m feeling a lot of things this evening. Just needed to get it off my chest to others who will probably understand!

A brief recap of the last 4 years of my life:

Dad had cancer & passed away a month before I graduated from college in 2015. I did a lot of big, exciting things that year after his passing. Lived at home with mom (narcissist, has always been physically & emotionally abusive to me) — was super stressed out living at home, and it got worse as time went on. Made a career change in 2017, and was finally able to move out last January — 2018 was a big, wonderful year of growth & self-discovery (wish I could’ve shared it with my dad). Mom took a rapid decline in 2018, notably after being laid off from her part-time job (she’s 66). I have one older brother who lives with his fiancé, and he takes care of everything regarding my mom now. I wound up with the family dog in September when mom took a nasty fall, and she’s been in & out of the hospital and a rehab facility for the last 5 months. Mental status very up & down, diagnosed with severe depression, but nothing else. There’s more stuff in there, but that’s the big stuff.

I’m okay most days, but have a hard time when I remember that I’m 25 and basically have no parents. My brother and I have a good relationship, but we live ~30 miles away from each other & don’t see each other often. We both work full time & just don’t have a lengthy phone conversation kind of relationship. No boyfriend on the horizon for me — went through a phase of just wanting to sleep around, then went through a chapter of wanting a relationship but every guy I had a connection with was only interested in sleeping with me, regardless of what I did. Needless to say, dating hasn’t been a high priority for me because of this, but I’m trying to be courageous about it this year.

There are so many times I wish I could call a parent & ask for financial help. (My brother reimburses me for any expenses for the dog, since I had no choice in taking her, but pretty much everything else is on me. Living in one of the most expensive cities is HARD.) Love my brother, but honestly, no one could ever be as excited or proud as a parent is when you share an accomplishment or something *you* are proud of. I wish I could just call a parent to talk, or whine about how hard being an adult is sometimes (which my dad would always meet with tough love, but empathize). And I miss the days when I could oh so nicely ask my parents if they could help me out — a new set of sheets, taking me out to dinner, etc.

I’ve been through so much stuff that my friends haven’t, and sometimes it gets lonely being the only one my age who knows what it feels like. I was so exhausted yesterday that all I wished for was someone to make dinner for me because that task was entirely too much for me to handle at that moment in time.

I don’t struggle like this very often, but when I do, it hits hard.

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Hi Diamond. You are 25 and that is a great age. I am proud of you for graduating college and finding a job that gives you enough financial independence to have a place of your own. You say you are on a path of growth and self-discovery. Excellent. Please stay the course because it sounds like a good one. Your mother has been abusive and she is still relatively young. Those behaviors rarely get better as people age. It sounds like you have a solid sense of self, so tune into that to guide you to your best life. Your mom may not offer the support your friend's parents do, but you are developing priceless life skills that will carry you through. Let your older brother take on the care he is already doing and step in where you feel comfortable. Remain focused on your life, taking care of your dog, growing your career and developing healthy relationships.

You're twenty-five. My Lord, I can barely remember what I was like when I was your age. But you have been through a lot. I know you don't feel it now but when you hit forty, fifty etc. you will be so far ahead of your peers. I know that doesn't seem like much now but trust me, you'll have so many coping skills that they won't have.

One thing I wish I had known when I was your age was that being your own best friend and advocate is so very important. Yes, having a strong parental figure is great but being strong for yourself is even better. I lost my father when I was four so I never had a strong male role model and I made some stupid decisions because of it. I guess I always was looking for that father figure.

Come on here and share your accomplishments. We will all be proud of you. I know it's not the same thing but having good friends counts too. Forget about the men and try to form strong bonds with other women. The men will come and usually the good ones show up when you are busy living your life.

Hey, Black; glad to hear from you! ((((((Hugs)))))))

Adulting is hard!!!!

Especially when you've grown up in as dysfunctional an environment as the one it seems you must have....crazy narcissistic mom, empathetic dad on whom you had to rely for all of the good stuff, and now...HE's gone. It really sucks, big time.

Have you ever been in therapy?

Please don't think that I'm saying this because I think you're crazy or bad or anything like that. The thing is, you've been through a lot and you CAN'T have developed healthy coping patterns. It's something that you're going to need to learn.

Look into finding a good therapist who feels like a good fit and make an investment in yourself.


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