I finally faced one of my biggest fears and called APS in Illinois for my parents. I wrote out what to say and included examples. I was super calm and concise. I'm a writer so I feel like I did a good job telling the facts of the story. In the end, however, they told me there's nothing they can do unless my dad is physically abused (he is verbally abused) by my mom. Or neglected (hes actually fed, etc.). Is it true that verbal and emotional abuse does not constitute abuse? Anyway, they're sending me resources but they said as long as my mom can make decisions, there's nothing to be done. I said, "Well, what do you mean by make decisions? Because I'm not so sure she is making good decisions." And they said, "Basically, even if they say 'no' and make bad decisions, they still are capable of making decisions." They were nice. And thanks for all the advice here (I'm sure I'll be back). I'm so glad I called because I tried. I'll continue to send them water and food. And maybe visit briefly here and there. But I'm done letting them live rent free in my head and affect my marriage. And now...I'm going for a cheap massage.
It was a giant step. OK, it did not lead anywhere (yet) but still has much value.
Educational: you know what APS will do, what they don't, how they operate a little better. There is an 'initial contact' on file now.
You can move *calling APS* from the One Day column to the Done column.
I found as I moved things from One Day to Done it brought me some relief. It went from future anxiety.. to well, I've tried that.
Eg a councillor asked me had I done everything I could?(about LO's unhealthy eating habits)? I thought about it. Can't control the shopping list or do more than advise.. then I decided I could help arrange a Dietician!. Once I had done that, I really could, mentally, let go of that particular thing. It really was past the limit of what I could change. Now I am relaxed about it.
Peanutty, that is a minor thing of course compared to your Mom yelling etc at Dad.
The Social worker told me;
- Do what you can, let go the rest.
- Advise change of mind to accept more help is OK.
- Then await the next crises.
- Be "Ready to Roll" (ie have your notes, paperwork etc in order)
I picture sitting in a tank out the front of the house, observations all noted down & collated neatly in a field notebook. Helmut on. Just waiting..
Join me 😁
Once you relax some.. park the tank where it is, go about your own daily life. Know that at any time you are READY for that call-up. Ready to place your hard hat on & swing in to battle. Know you can always chat here too 😊
I didn't tell you before, because my calling was super beneficial for me, I got the same response, except they did go visit.
It didn't matter that my mom and stepdad were living in filth, she was verbally abusive and decisions were awful. I was told that people can live anyway they choose. As long as they had food and utilities there was no intervention. It helped me reassess my expectations of what is acceptable. That was freeing, I didn't have to worry about how things were, the "authorities" determined that they were fine as is. Okay, have at it.
I am so happy you are starting self care and stepping back.
enjoy the massage!!
You have taken the first step towards detctching--congratulations!
Have a lovely massage.