- 3 months ago
- Wedding: July 1998 - City, State
First time poster, long time lurker.
My husband and I have been married for 21 years and we have two daughters, ages 20 and 17.
We consider ourselves good parents. Not to lenient, not to strict. We have spoken with our daughters about how to conduct themselves. We raised them to be respectful but to also stand up for themselves. We have lived an upper middle class lifestyle but we have not spoiled our daughters. We believe that they should earn things. We have also been open about sex and have spoken with our daughters on numerous occasions about safe sex and the need to protect themselves in the event they do decide to have sex. We do not believe that an STI or a pregnancy should be a punishment for having sex.
All that said to say this. Three years ago at the beginning of our oldest daughters senior year she told us she was pregnant. We recovered from the shock, because she was on birth control. However, she wasnt using it regularly. The boy dumped her immediately. We asked her what she would like to do and that we would support her no matter what her choice was even if it meant helping her raise the baby. She opted to place the baby for adoption. It broke our hearts but she said she wanted to give the baby to a couple who was struggling with infertility. They are friends of ours. They lost three babies due to an inherited condition.
After the birth of the baby we all went to post adoptive counseling. We went to family counseling. After she recovered graduated we asked her what her future plans were and where she saw her future going. She said she didnt think college was for her but that she was thinking about a technical school or possibly the military. She got a job as a waittress. Well a year went by from the time she graduated and she still wasnt moving forward so we went back to family counseling because we were worried that something was wrong. She wouldnt save money for a car or an apartment and spent her paychecks as soon as she got them. We talked with the counselor about this and the counselor helped us form a plan where she would pay us rent and set an end date of one year to move out. Once that date came, all the money she had given to us would be used to help move her into an apartment.
Well she quit the job and the deadline came and went. She made no attempt to look for an apartment or buy a car. Then she started staying out late and not coming home at all. She wouldnt call and would be gone for days on end. I was trying not to smother her but to be honest I was terrified something had happened to her. So back to counseling we went. The counselor suggested that we give her some tough love and tell her that she could not continue to use our home as a crash pad whenever she felt like showing up at home. If she was going to live with us as an adult she had to maintain a job, save money, and at least let us know she was okay if she wasnt going to be home.
She agreed and then it kept happening. Finally in January of this year she came in the middle of the night, grabbed her things and said she was moving in with her boyfriend, who lives with his mother. We didnt even know she had a boyfriend. He is 4 years older than her and has already been in jail for non payment of child support. We dont say anything because we know that if we do say something it will just push her farther away. So we keep our opinions to ourselves and slap a smile on our faces and bear it.
Last week she stopped by to show off her new used car. She is working a part time job at a fast food restaurant. I told her I was happy that she had made forward progress.
Fast forward til today. She messages me and says she is pregnant and they are thrilled and she wants us to happy for her. She says, “you will finally get a grandbaby of your very own.” She then tells me that they have enough money to care for a baby and they will be getting an apartment next week.
God help me I am not thrilled. She is irresponsible, cant even take care of her dog let alone a baby and I mean that. She got a dog 8 months ago, couldnt take care of it, left it here when she moved out and we are feeding it and paying the vet bills. She doesnt think beyond the next 5 minutes of her life. She fell off our insurance at 18 and they neither one have health insurance, even though we paid for her to remain on birth control.
In a moment of frustration I snapped. I told her I thought she was making a mistake and that she had not thought this through. I told her that she didnt really understand what she was getting herself into because she was tying herself to this man with a baby, and while it certainly sounds like its going to be okay, kids are expensive and they require doctor visits and without insurance and steady jobs they would find themselves unable to afford a baby.
She got angry and said that this was her make up baby for the one we forced her to give away. This is totally not true. We would have gladly helped her raise the first one and told her so, but she made the choice. She then tells me that she has applied for medicaid at which point I told her if she was applying for medicaid then they couldnt really afford a baby if someone else was picking up the tab. She told me if I didnt have anything nice to say that I should not speak to her and that she would come by tomorrow and we could talk about it. In my anger I told her not to come.
I just dont know what to do. She is making a huge mistake. She really doesnt think past 5 minutes in front of her face. Worse this man has already spent time in jail for non payment of child support. She is throwing away her chance at a normal life. This baby is not a dog that can be dropped off when you get tired of dealing with it.
I feel like im a failure as a mother and as a parent. I know I shouldnt have said what I said to her, but I feel like she needs a reality check. Im angry, disappointed. The last thing I said to her was that I still loved her but not her choices.
I just needed to vent. Sorry for the length.