It is an unfortunate part of life though, that when our children become “adults” and I am going to define that state of “adult” as the time when they declare independence of us, when THEY make the decisions to cut the apron strings and declare that they will no longer abide by our rules, but will make their own rules and that we are powerless to stop them. That age may be 12, 14, 16, 18 or older.
The younger children who declare their “independence” of course want you to still provide clothes, the clothes they want, and a car of course, and a roof over their heads and spending money, because they are not able to provide these things for themselves, and you are “obligated” to do so because they are still minors and the law obligates you to provide basics for your children.
The fear and frustration felt by parents in this position, is awful. You are attached to that child, you love them, you have done your best in the past to teach that child right from wrong, manners and respect, and now you realize you can’t watch that child 24/7, and you can’t physically over power them. You don’t want to turn them over to child services and get involved in that mess.
Eventually maybe junior gets involved in drugs or theft or fighting or all the above, and the law knocks on your door, or he gets thrown out of school, probably no big deal he was flunking all his courses anyway or skipping most of the time. Your frustration grows. The arrogant attitude of Junior is so frustrating.
With the arrogant attitude on Junior’s part, it isn’t long before he has go go before a judge, and depending on what Junior has done, maybe be tried as an adult. By now, though, he may be crying to you “Oh save me mom or dad, I’m so scared, I’ll never do anything again.” I’ve been in that very spot.
I did take him home when the judge released him. He totally ignored his probation regulations and curfews, and was right back to his old tricks.
Then it was a case of “rinse and repeat” with the criminal behaviors and lies….I turned him in to the police and he’s back in juvy court again.
Fast forward a few months, and he’s 18 doing five years for a home invasion. Did two in prison, of course the “Mom I’m sorry” didn’t last long and it was only translated into “send commissary money”
Her was released with a 3 year parole, but didn’t change his behaviors, only escalated them, criminal activities, felon carrying a gun (a felony in itself) joking about how he isn’t going to follow parole rules. Rules are for others. Continued to steal.
After he murdered Jessica Witt, only about five months after being released on the home invasion rap, he cried “I’m innocent” but of course in my heart as much as I wanted it to be true, I knew it was not.
My Junior has been in prison now except for another a total of 12 months on the street since he was 17. While he has been in prison he has violated rules there and even tried to have me killed.
I read a letter Patrick wrote to a minister we know crying to the minister how we owed him (my son) UNCONDITIONAL LOVE and we were not even talking to him (much less sending money) and therefore we were not “good Christians”
Jesus says in
Matthew 18:15-18 Moreover if thy brother shall trespass against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone; if he shall hear thee , though hast gained thy brother, but if he will not hear thee, then take with thee one or two more, that in the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established that and if he shall neglect to hear them,, tell it unto the church but if he neglect to hear the church, let him be unto thee as a heathen man and a publican. KJV
The apostle Paul restated this same and also added, “not even to eat with him.”
Treating someone as a heathen (unbelieving foreigner) or a publican (tax collector) was the ultimate shunning. Jewish people would not eat with these people though they might be forced to do commerce with them.
This description on how to deal with a BROTHER who had trespassed against you gives the abuser a chance to repent, quietly without anyone else knowing, but if he doesn’t repent, then the victim is to take witnesses and talk to the man, try to get him to repent, if that doesn’t work, the victim and the witnesses go too the community and lay the story before them. If the man still doesn’t heed the friends and community, he is essentially banned, both from his friends and from the community itself.
Love is more than just an emotional feeling that melts our heart when we see the face of the ones we love, it is about action. Kindness is love, caring is love, whether you even know the person, but the concept of unconditional love in my opinion is reserved for an infant or small child. Adults and those who declare them selves emancipated from your control as a parent, are no longer entitled to Unconditional love from you when they lose that right by abusing you or others.
Letting go emotionally of someone who has abused us, and who we loved with all our hearts is difficult, but if they don’t repent and change their ways, we really have no choice in the matter. I think that Jesus’s advice is the way it should be handled. I did it with my son Patrick, with my mother, and a lot of other people I am NC with.
Taking Jesus’ words to heart and realizing that we do not have to endure abuse at the hands of anyone if they are not going to change that behavior will save us from future abuse from that person.
The story of Joseph and how he had “forgiven” his brothers who sold him into slavery (gotten the bitterness out of his heart) but he did not TRUST these men until he had severely tested them to see what kind of men they had become since he had last seen them.
It hurts when we must separate ourselves from someone we love because they are offenders and have little or no intention to actually turn their lives around. Sometimes they, like my son Patrick, will tug on our heart strings like him claiming “I didn’t do it mom” LOL