Monday, January 9, 2012

Six Feet Under

Bulldog and I are reeling.  DJ has been attempting to hide how depressed she feels for a number of months now, and we finally got to the bottom of it.  She checked into a facility that can support her and help her get back on her feet.  Thank GOD for professional people who care, genuinely care, about our girl.

Bulldog and I take turns falling apart.  It's hard to see our daughter reach this point where the pain is so unbearable that she just can't bear it anymore.  The tiredness we saw in her face was simultaneously disheartening and encouraging.  When a person is tired of fighting something in the only way she knew how, and is ready to give up, then she's also ready to deal with the pain instead of avoiding it.  Then, maybe, just maybe, she can control the pain somewhat instead of the pain controlling her.

Bulldog at one point mirrored back to me exactly what I had been thinking:  what happens to the kids who don't have resources?  Our kid has a good support system in the form of her parents and family, her therapist and her doctors and she still folded to the overwhelming pressures of society's non-acceptance and shunning.  Granted, I would have folded a long time ago, so I am not negatively judging DJ for finally succumbing to the rejection.  But what the hell happens to the kids who don't have any support or resources?

We know what happens to many of them, don't we?  There seems to be no way out because in their world, there truly is no way out.  I do not advocate suicide-ever- but try to explain to a 15 year old who has no acceptance at home or out in the world that if he/she can just hang in there until she's an adult, that everything will suddenly be ok.  Seriously?  No wonder suicide seems like a viable alternative.  Again, I do not advocate suicide-EVER- but we are fooling ourselves if we don't recognize how attractive an alternative it must seem to be to people who spend nearly every waking second of their day on the outside looking in.  OH.  MY.  GOD.  When the implications of that truly sink in, it's overwhelming to contemplate.

So, parents, if you're struggling with accepting your kid, let me remind you again of what you may face if you can't find a way to overcome your struggles:  you can lose your child to a desperate act of violence that your child takes against him or herself.  Instead of spending, or borrowing, thousands of dollars for college tuition, or a car, or the deposit on an apartment, you could be spending that same money on a funeral and a headstone that will sit in a cemetery getting rained on, and snowed on, and neglected when you're not there.  THAT will be your future with your child.

We have done nearly everything parents can do to love and accept our child and STILL the pressures of non-acceptance out in the world invaded the safe place we attempted to create for our beloved daughter.  We're lucky because we are pain in the ass people who are compulsive about our kids so not much gets by us.  Our jobs out in the world have prepared us to look at our kids under a microscope, thank goodness, so we recognized what we saw almost as soon as we saw it. That, and the fact that DJ has a best friend, Sister Chromatid, who alerted us as soon as she knew DJ was in trouble. (We love, love, love Sister Chromatid.  She's a tiny package full to the brim with love and exuberance.) And even with all that in place, the world still got to DJ.  We're here to catch her and she will be ok.  But what about the kids and the adults who don't have the safety net?  Where do they end up, oftentimes?  Six feet under....

So, to repeat information on resources:  please check out the links on the blog.  PFLAG has support groups that meet monthly in many places.  That once a month meeting could be your kid's lifeline.  If you or your child are at the end of your rope, or will be soon, try the TREVOR HOTLINE at 1-866-488-7386.  They are wonderful.  Can't get to a meeting?  Go online to Laura's Playground for online chat rooms.  Don't have a computer, consider going to the public library.  If not, call the TREVOR HOTLINE as a minimum.  Anyone interested in becoming part of an online support group that maybe we can establish?  I can try to learn everything I can to get this thing up and running-we need to be part of the solution folks.  We have to find a way to add to the pot of resources for those who have limited access to resources....Please help.