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TherapistMarryAnn, Therapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 5823
Experience:  Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues.
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I'm writing in reference to my older son, Jeremy, 38yo.

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Hi, my name is ***** ***** I'm writing in reference to my older son, Jeremy, 38yo. Within the last 18mos +or-, he has been going thru some dibilatiating emotional and physical times. He was always the "strong one" in the family,walking in the footsteps of his Dad. His Dad is a quadrapledic, but very postive and self sustained. We have rarely seen or spoken with him for 6mos up till Mom's day of this year-the happiest day in my life! His girlfriend of 12yrs said the other day, he lives to have the approval of his father and me. He's always known he can come to us for anything, anytime. but in his state of mind currently, he seems not to care. I had let our younger son come live with us for a few weeks recently-under our better judgement. It rurned out to be a terrible mistake, putting every under an unbelievable stress-he is 35yo, married to a 24yo, and has a baby girl who will be two and this was the 2nd time we've seen her.To make things a bit cleared, I am diagnosed with Clinical Depression for the las 5 yrs and am treatment resistent to the meds; so I tried ECT and after the 2nd treatment, I suffered 2 heart attacks, even tho I had cardiac clearence. Never had cardiace problems prior to the ECT, but with with only 2 sessions, I did feel some peace, and even my doctor recognized the same. But I don't want to die either, except a few times. The brothers have always dispised each other. He also was afraid we would think he was like his brother-well, unfortunately, we found out in the last few days, it's true, but not to Ryan's extent. The doctor told me to come home to rest, be stress free and they came to live a week after i was released from the hospital. I can only blame myself; I was SO afraid he would give my husband a heart atack(has many, many medical problems), so I was wound up the entire time. Didn't know what to do or how to fix it. Found out he was stealing our medications we need to live, even our morphine, Klonopin. baclofen, and provigil. I was devasted he would do that to us knowing our health situations. We have spent thousands of money the last few years trying to keep them afloat, mainly for the baby; it was a total waste. Everything I try to do good, turns around and ends up worse.
When Jeremy's girlfriend started texting me, I knew it had to be not good. He wasn't eating, wanted to sleep, nothing made him happy, felt self defeated, and was afraid we wouk think of him as his brother. He texted his Dad last evening and said he would be "better not being here cause all he does is hurt everyone and he doesn't know why? I freaked, because I've felt that many times, even recently. His girl and I chased him thru the woods after church yesterday, and she caught him in the middle of a busy highway median. She grabbed and wouldn't let him go till we got him in the van. He sat and cried with his head hung low, totally embarrassed. He had not been paying his bills and they were way behind and she didn't know. He's very sneaky. I told my husband and him and Pat, it would kill me if he ended up like me with the horrible pain daily and that's how I started out. We don't know what to do. Their insurance is poor and they can't afford to pay for sessions. He borrowed a large sum of money last week and even lied to her about that as well as us-my head is swimming. I've been researching options aall morning, mainly waiting for return calls. So I was elated to find you all! Guess you weren't expecting a family novel! I'm very sorry...any comment would be very much appreciated. Thank you for your time...

Hi Pamela, I'd like to help you with your question.

Before I respond, I wanted to clarify your situation. Right now, you have your younger son and his family living with you. Your older son, Jeremy, is on his own with his girlfriend. Jeremy is having financial and emotional difficulties and has just now started to tell you and his girlfriend about it. Is this correct?

My other question is about what symptoms Jeremy is having. Is he having trouble sleeping, using alcohol or other drugs, does he feel depressed, etc?

Thank you,


Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Hey Kate-appreciate the rapid reply...I could sit and cry and never stop...that's a whole different issue! No, Ryan his family, unfortunantly were thrown out about a month and 1/2 was them or us. We and Pat just found out to what extent Jeremy was lying to us. They had their phone disconnected and she works from home and need sit for her computer, almost had electricity shut off and he didn't tell the woman he's lived with for 12yrs any of this. They both have always worked, but we had to loan them a large amount of money so they could get back on their feet, but he lied to her about how much we gave; talk about hurt. He drives away for hours to hide when someone finds out the truth. He refused to talk to anyone, won't eat, wants to sleep all the time cause he doesn't have to think, and had been using strange excuses saying he's SO exhausted, in pain, hates job, etc. He got on the phone which was suposed to be a nice conversation a few weeks back and just tore me up for no reason, then slammed the phone down in my ear. His Dad said if he EVER does that to me again, it's over due to my mental state and just getting over 2 heart attacks. He's definitely depressed, however my husband doesn't really accept the whole mental health stuff. I know, been there, done that; it's not the same, but it's there.

You're welcome. I am sorry that you are going through this.

It sounds like your son is struggling with many different emotions. But the one that sounds like is bothering him the most is not living up to his expectations. He is decompensating so badly because he expected to be able to hold it all together. Now that he has not, he is acting out by trying to hide what is going on. This has a lot to do with shame and guilt. He feels if he hides it, then others won't see what is going on and he won't have to feel ashamed and guilty.

Accepting help is part of admitting he is guilty. In order to accept help, your son would need to say something is wrong. So instead of facing the guilt and shame and getting help, he avoids getting help as well so he won't have to face his problems.

The first step is getting him to understand that this can happen to anyone and that he is going to be fine. He needs to know he is accepted and that he is still seen as strong and capable. Men focus their worth on being able to provide and being the "strength" in their relationships. When they cannot, they feel worthless. Some men take this more to heart than others.

The next step is finding help. He and his wife can contact the local United Way for resources for counseling and financial assistance. There are utility assistance programs as well as help finding affordable insurance. The local community mental health center can help him finding low cost/no cost counseling so he can have support emotionally.

Once your son is willing to get help, he should start to recover. However, setting limits in the meanwhile with how he treats you and other family members is a good idea. He needs to know that there are limits and understand that while you are there and supportive of him, you are not going to accept his abusive actions.

He may also want to talk with his doctor about some short term anti depressant medication to help him until therapy starts to work. This will help him cope and work to improve his situation. Right now, he is overwhelmed and therefore unable to function well.

I hope this has helped you,

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