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EllieRose Offline
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What am I supposed to do? - January 19th 2011, 08:20 PM

My dad has been dealing with health problems since I started highschool.
Ever since he was diagnosed with congestive heart failure, it hit me that I'm gonna loose him some day sooner than I want to.
So I skip school. A lot. I miss at least a month every year. And I get in trouble with truency officers. And I realize what a bad mistake it was to do once I go to court because it upsets my dad, but now he's in the hospital.
He had a massive stroke...
And he might not wake up...
I'm 16 years old and my life consists of my bird raising and my pets, and my dad. I'm daddy's little girl.. I would help him every day with grocery shopping or cleaning and if I ever had a problem, I went to him with it.

Now that my dad is in the hospital, my mom is freaking out.
Me and my mom do not get along. I have a brother that doesn't help out at all, instead he drives an hour away every day to go see his girlfriend. My mom doesn't drive, so we need my brother. We need to go grocery shopping and stuff...

I had to get rid of all my birds, and they're my life.. And I miss them so so much... And I don't even understand why I had to get rid of them... They paid for themselves with the babies I sold.. And nobody takes care of them but me. And now my mom is trying to make me get rid of my dogs. That's why I can't stand her.. Every time something bad happens she blows it WAY out of proportion.

My life is falling apart and I don't know what to do... My moms grief is on my shoulders, and I hate it. And my brother just leaves..
My mom won't let me out of the house, I'm going crazy. I just want to be around people my age group, not my crazy mother... She goes to work and she has friends, I started going to a new school this year, and I don't know ANYONE there. I have no friends and I have no desire to make new friends because it doesn't matter because mom won't even let me out.

What am I supposed to do?
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Re: What am I supposed to do? - January 21st 2011, 11:59 PM

Hello, Ellie. I'm sorry to hear about what's going on with your dad, and I hope he wakes up soon. I think it would help a great deal if you could talk to him, whether it's about your conflicts with your mom or other things that aren't so stressful.

I know it's easy to see your mom as the "bad guy" in all of this. She probably is overreacting - that's a fairly common reaction when someone is under a great deal of stress. And I have no doubt that your mom is stressed out right now, just as you are. You're looking at the possibility of losing a father, and she's looking at the possibility of losing a husband. You're facing new situations, and so is she. You're both scared right now, for similar as well as different reasons.

This is the time to draw closer to your mother, not push her away. Try to understand where she is coming from, and in turn, she may be more willing to listen to you. Unfortunately, you may have to give up your dogs as well... she may not feel like the family can afford them anymore. If that is the case, rather than arguing with her and saying she's not thinking clearly, try to discuss other options with her. Perhaps a family member or old friend could take care of your dogs while your father is in the hospital, so your mother doesn't have to worry about them while she's trying to sort things out financially. Maybe your brother's girlfriend could take the dogs. In regards to seeing friends, talk to your mom about how important it is for you to feel connected with other people during this difficult time, just as your brother needs to feel connected to his girlfriend and your mom needs to feel connected to her co-workers. See if you can convince her to let you take the bus home after school, so you have some time to meet people through clubs/activities. Perhaps your friends' parents would be willing to pick you up or drop you off, so your mom won't have to stress about giving you rides when you want to hang out with friends.

Your brother is probably also stressed out and scared, which is why he's "escaping" by driving to his girlfriend's house every day. Men don't always want to talk about how they're feeling, so if you ask him directly, he'll probably avoid the question and say nothing's wrong. He can see you and your mom are struggling, though, and if you both sit down with him, I'm sure the three of you can reach an agreement as a family. It doesn't take long to shop for groceries, so ask him to set aside one hour every day in case you and your mom need to run errands. You could also ask him to pick things up from the store on the way back home.

Everyone is going to struggle with your father's illness, and everyone is going to make sacrifices during this difficult time. The name of the game is to compromise: sometimes you will have to help your mom/brother out, and sometimes they will have to help you out. In order to reach compromises, you'll have to come up with alternatives, because not everything will be so black and white during this uncertain time. You may have to convince your mom/brother to settle for something they're not entirely happy with, and you may have to do the same in return.

I wish you and your family all the best. <3

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