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giltridden's picture

First, I would like to introduce myself. I am a single mother of two, stepmother to 2 and loving wife to the man of my dreams. My bio children are under 10, my steps are 20 and 21. SO and I reconnected on facebook 15 years after we had dated and broken up. It was love at first sight. Again. But we had a long journey ahead of us.
The SO is Native American, and he left his reservation to come to the city to live with me, bringing his 18 year old daughter. Now daughter was royally messed up before they arrived. She was given up by her mother to SO when she was 9, with minimal contact from BM. SO's other child is a son who I knew and cared for back in the day, so he and I have had no problem with the reconnection.
Anyway, I spent the first year trying to give SD the benefit of the doubt. She had tantrums, she damaged my home, she broke my things, she stole from me and on and on.I tried to understand and respect her bond with SO. At this time, SO was really torn between his daughter and me.
About a year and half into this, SO went to Hawaii to work, leaving SD with me for about a month. Since SD moved in with my children and her dad and me, she had never worked and dropped out of high school. Anyway, with Dad in Hawaii, she was apparently seeing this guy behind my back. When dad gets home,there is a big explosion and she leaves to go live with this boy. SO is devestated. I am also devastated.
While she's with this boy, SD gets arrested for several things, shoplifting, underage drinking, stupid things like that. She starts using drugs heavily. At this time, SO is wrongfully incarcarated for an old child support case that he had taken care of. While in jail, he is able to work and go to school through a work-house type program. He does both and I am so proud of him.
So now, after weeks of SD calling me and whining to her dad that we don't do anything for her, she breaks into our house and steals a flat screen tv, a lap top and a wii. After I forgive her for that, we start tentatively talking again.
So now this weekend. SD is arrested for two warrants. She is asking me to sign a bond for her and help pay the 300 fee. If she doesn't show for her court dates, I would be out 2,000 dollars. After talking to SO, he agrees with me and we decide not to help her. He is very supportive of me and is backing me 100%
But now I feel guilty. Should I have gotten her out? I do not want to sound bitter or angry. I really love her, but since my kids are still so little, I am not sure what is the right thing to do.

emotionaly beat up's picture

You absolutely did the right thing in not bailing her out. You don't think you would have lost the $2,000 you know you would have. Sometimes the only thing that works is tough love. Where drugs are concerned when you have given all the support you can and nothing has worked, then you need to step back and let it go. She needs to hit rock bottom before she can get back up. I hope for your sake and the sake of your family SHE turns things around for herself, she has you and her dad and she knows it, so if she wants to turn this around she can. You just need to be strong enough to let HER do it for herself. You have started showing her your strength by not paying her bail. Don't worry, you helped her here, even if she doesn't know it. All the best.

giltridden's picture

Thank you for those words. They are exactly what I needed to hear. Logically, I know we did the right thing, but those emotions keep getting in the way. She actually got out by someone else and hasn't unloaded on me, so hopefully she "gets" it just a little bit more. I am confident that I would still feel okay with my decision even if she was still sitting in jail.

sandye21's picture

I've experienced the same thing with older children I adopted. Once drugs enter into the picture, they will use someone else if they can't use you. And if they can't use you get ready for false accusations. I agree with oldskool, you do not need her around your other children. Get a restraining order.

emotionaly beat up's picture

Guiltridden, someone else paid her bail Biggrin It's amazing how they always manage to find another sucker to enable them isn't it. When she doesn't pay this person back or fails to show in court, they'll learn and this pattern will just continue till word gets around. You did the right thing by her and for her, you also did the right thing for your family. Stay strong. I have a friend in a similar situation, and I know it is not easy, as a parent it is a natural instinct to pick up the pieces of our sick, injured or in trouble kids, but sometimes that is the worst thing we can do for them. I honestly believe you have shown amazing courage here and done the absolute right things.

stired_crazy's picture

No, Dont bail her out! Its her mess let her sit in it!
She will never learn if she keeps being pulled from the frying pan. I know its hard and you feel guilty,But I let my own BS sit and his bond at the time was only a 100 bucks.
They are ONLY sorry once their put somewhere like this, plus if she has a drug problem she is drying out and prolly having withdraws and thats more on her mind then what she did wrong.

ctnmom's picture

Gilt, you should feel guilty if you DO bail her out. She'll never learn or get the help she needs if you do. Try channeling your energies into convincing the system to put her in rehab instead of jail. Prayers to you, you sound like a great person.