The Secret Life of Melanie O.
 
Wednesday, April 16, 2008
Letting go...
Back in the 1970's, Paul McCartney and Wings recorded a song called Letting Go, which appeared on their Wings over America album. The song was mainly about lust, but as I think about my son, Andy, whom I haven't heard from in over a year, the chorus of that song comes back and plays over and over in my mind:

Oh I Feel Like Letting Go
Oh I Feel Like Letting Go.

My son Andy has decided to sever his relationship with his family. I think it stems from the fact that he has used up his resources - no one will give him a free place to stay without him taking his medication and going to counselling and therapy. He doesn't want to follow through on a program that would require him to use part of his disability check for housing. In his mind, his disability check is like his "allowance" and he should be able to blow it on restaurants and CDs if he wants. Emotionally, Andy is still 15 years old and every day should be about being "treated" to something. He suffers from Bipolar disease as well as other personality disorders. He's 28 years old.

I have had to face facts - Andy just wants to be left alone to live life as he wants to. He doesn't want family members telling him what to do. He needs regular professional help by the mental health field, but only uses it when he reaches a crisis stage.

More than a year's gone by since I got a letter from him. As time goes on - he drifts farther and farther away. I've had to chase up his location over the past year, and I have no idea if he ever read my letters. The last letters I've written have been returned to me, unopened. He's moved again and we can only guess where he is. I'm not going to chase him any more. He just remains an evasive butterfly. I just hope that, as time goes on, he will decide to re-establish contact. He knows where we are.

I just hope he doesn't wait until it's too late. In the meantime, I have to let go.
posted by Melanie O. at 12:38 PM -
11 Comments:
  • At 2:17 AM, Blogger Cookie said…

    this just brought tears to my eyes. You have to be one heck of a mom to let go of your son that way in order for him to live his life. I can't even begin to imagine how hard that must be. Big hugx

     
  • At 6:44 AM, Blogger Karen said…

    I hope your son is able to get the help he needs and once that happens, to reconnect with you and the rest of the family.
    It's terribly difficult to let a loved one go free that way, but sometimes it's best for everyone. Especially if it's also letting go of manipulation and codependence.
    Life sure deals us some crappy hands sometimes...

     
  • At 7:28 PM, Blogger LivinginOz said…

    Thank you, cookie and karen. This has been a long time coming, so I've been through a couple of stages of mourning already - but there's only so much anyone can do. He's just too old to try and tell what to do, so I have to try to respect his choices. Yep - life can be a challenge at times.

     
  • At 6:32 PM, Anonymous David said…

    That's a very sad situation. It sounds like you have a realistic understanding of it though, and I hope that means it will hurt you less.

     
  • At 12:53 AM, Blogger Kanani said…

    I'm so sorry.
    I think we all knew this might happen one day, with the disappearances in the past.
    Yes, Andy has let go. And you must too.

    No other words to say, except that I'm thinking of you.

     
  • At 2:12 AM, Blogger Carole said…

    So sorry Melanie.
    So brave and hard.

     
  • At 2:39 AM, Blogger Mary Witzl said…

    I am really sorry to hear this too. It is so hard to keep on hoping and trying the way you have, with little to show for it in terms of your son's recovery. I think you're doing the right thing by letting go. Making yourself miserable will not help your son -- or you. Good luck and good wishes from me.

     
  • At 8:55 AM, Blogger LivinginOz said…

    Thank you, everyone. I had a horrible dream about Andy last night, so I know I haven't really let go - not deep down anyway. Of course, I'll always have a hope that he decides to contact one of us some day. You have to hope that the good memories you created in his childhood will provide some kind of impetus for him to reconnect as he gets older. I try to remember him as the child he was, not the man he became, through no fault of his own.

     
  • At 11:40 PM, Blogger Anthony said…

    I miss Andy, too. I think we are all concerned for him. I hope he's getting the help he needs. I hope he's doing better, and I wish him love and luck.

     
  • At 3:51 AM, Blogger PI said…

    There comes a time when letting go is the only answer. I hope you will find peace Of mind and be able to carry on with your life. All best wished.

     
  • At 11:32 PM, Blogger LivinginOz said…

    Thank you, everyone. Your words mean a lot to me.

     
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About Me
Name: Melanie O.
Home: Durham, North Carolina, United States
About Me: Female, American health and beauty-conscious professional who has rekindled a childhood love of dolls.
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