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Old 07-06-19, 04:05 AM
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My 19 year old troubled daughter was pregnant- and it would have been terrible.

I stuck this here because the subject covers too many things for anywhere else and ultimately it has to do with my daughter. It will be very long so I hope you can make it through because I really need to get this out. I am venting and also looking for validation and support and gentle, kindly given advice if any needs to be given.

I will try not to rehash a story in case its known but I need to give context. I have three kids: (son, 23, stroke survivor- daughter, 19 the one I am talking about and daughter, 15 who seems to be doing ok) My 19 year old has always pushed limits and boundaries. Her senior year she turned 18 and ran away. It was a horrible experience because we were helpless. In a nut shell- we shut off her phone, took away her car, tried to mediate at the school and tried to not make is easy for her to do whatever she wanted. She was living with older party girls and their derelict mother and ended up getting kicked out, became an addict and showed up on our doorstep 3 months later. She had stopped going to school. We got her in the hospital (she is BP and needed her meds) and then she agreed to rehab. She came back from rehab and lived in the rehab-sponsored recovery housing while she completed the program. She has lived in a total of 4 sober houses along the way due to either issues with the housemates relapsing or affordability. She has had about 12 jobs since she turned 18 and it seems like when the job gets good, she just quits for something else or loses it. She has always been wrapped up in boys- always having boyfriends. I am an alcoholic in recovery and use a 12 step program like her so we both know about relationships in early sobriety not being a smart thing. (in most cases)

We let her use the car once she moved into a sober house because you have to have a job. She got her own phone. We still help her out from time to time but we dont support her and yet she doesnt really support herself either. She just celebrated a year of sobriety in May.

When she was in high school I took her to the doctor and got her on birth control (the 3 year implant). I knew she was having sex and she admitted it when I told her she should consider BC. I always told her she could come to me, even about sex. Acceptance does not mean approval but still I had to go to her. I didn't want her to get pregnant due to impulsive choices- this was when she was 16.

Fast forward to 19 and she has been needing to see a GYN- she lived 45 minutes south of me and we went back and forth about me making an appointment or giving her resources and she assured me she had an appointment when I asked. The guy she is with.....*sigh* not a winner. Newly sober, no car, no job (he just got one) got kicked out of his sober living due to nonpayment. He has no education, not just higher ed but high school as well.(* let me just say that I have nothing against anyone who does not go to college or what kind of job they have. I have been in AA long enough to see someone with nothing get everything and I believe miracles happen) but this guy is not the guy you will hear speaking at a meeting having straightened his life out.
She had us meet him about 2 months ago- nice enough and I was able to find out his history thanks to us both being in recovery and he was forthcoming. He is super into her and if being into someone counts as treating them well then he treats her well. No arguing or abuse.

Last Sunday she came to tell us- with him- that she was pregnant. My husband and I were silent for like 3 minutes. He saw my face and thought I would lose it. She asked if we were angry. I'll paraphrase but it went something like
Me:" I think we are beyond the point of being angry- what is your plan?"
Her: " I am going to apply for cash assistance, section 8 housing, food stamps and WIC."
Me: " That is the plan? What about J? What is his plan in this? What about your job and any sort of education? (she managed to graduate because she had good grades and they let her finish late) What about healthcare?" ( you get the idea)
There was no yelling but we were not happy, how could we be. She lives in a recovery house, cant support herself completely and neither can this guy. She brought up my husband and I getting married and having a baby when I was 20. I said " No offense J but what you and she have is not at all what hubby and I have- not even close. We were in a completely different situation".
I began to gather stuff for dinner and they stepped out to SMOKE.
She came in and told me that I had hurt his feelings by saying that and for a hot minute I snapped : " I do not give an F about his feelings or his fragile ego. I do not give an F if he likes how we feel or not. My concern is not him, its you. Its your body-not his". That is the only time I appeared angry. They decided to leave and I said we would talk later. She texted that night about how she thought it would go differently and tried to rope me into a texting conversation but I do not go back and forth via text. I call someone or meet with them if its important. Besides, how else did she expect it to go?
We were in shock. We went to see my mother and we all talked about how unrealistic she was being. Frankly these are the thoughts I had: " she is being selfish saying she wants this baby and having no way of planning for it, she wants me to swoop in to the rescue and offer to help her through it while cosigning the BS. She knows we would never turn our back on a helpless baby or grandchild but I do not want to raise another baby. She does not want to live home and we could never trust her here-at least not for a long time. I know she got pregnant on purpose. She has always wanted a baby-since she was a little girl. She knows unprotected sex leads to babies. Of course HE is happy and supportive- right now he doesnt have to DO anything" Stuff like that.

The next day we had a wedding to go to. As we were walking in she calls me crying and I told her I couldnt talk then and to call Mimi(my mom).
The next day Mimi told me that she calmed her down and that my daughter wasn't sure she should be with the guy and wasn't sure she should have the baby. None of us would ever tell her she should get an abortion- not our decision. (and please lets not debate the ethics of abortion, I am too worn out to defend myself right now-I personally couldn't do it but I believe women have the right to choose)

The following day we had her come over alone and had a more in depth conversation and her tune changed again. Now what she told my Mom was not the case. She did want to stay with J and they were in love and she was having the baby. So we told her we loved her and would do our best to support her but she needed to take the intitiative now by applying for all those programs and getting healthcare. What could we do? We love her and the baby would be helpless and the baby isnt responsible for its mothers' choices.

So when she left things seemed...better I guess.
That saturday she called. She had been in the hospital all night and miscarried. She was so upset and also the hormones made it worse. I was supportive and told her it just wasn't her time and that God took the choice out of her hands and there was no burdon.

When I hung up I was so relieved. Isn't that sick of me? I really believe that the choice was removed from her and made for her in her best interests. A baby would have changed her life forever and have been hard. She is not med compliant for her BP(she decides when she needs to go off them whenever she wants), she was resigning herself to poverty at the very least in the beginning. She has just a year sober and does not have her "s***" together in any sense of the word. There are a plethora of reasons why the miscarriage was "good". Not to mention she has chronic lymes disease and other GYN issues and frankly I think any pregnancy she does have with be hard for her physically.
But I love her and the mom in me wants to make it alright.
She has to follow up with the doc in a week and I offered to help her find one and suggested birth control like the implant and she was receptive but this was also when she was sobbing so who knows?

I do not know if I even need advice but I welcome perspectives. Am I a horrible mother? or person? or parents?
Did we handle it ok in any sort of way? Would handling it differently made it better or worse? Have any of you been in this situation?

I wont even begin to explain how this affected her siblings- there is not enough space to include them but they are in general hurt by her and have been for so long, this was just one more thing to put distance between them and her.
I truly ask that people be kind- even if you disagree. I feel very fragile myself and I do not want to feel worse.
Thank you all so much for reading.
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Old 07-06-19, 07:30 AM
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Re: My 19 year old troubled daughter was pregnant- and it would have been terrible.

You did the right thing to do given the circumstances.
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Old 07-06-19, 12:39 PM
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Re: My 19 year old troubled daughter was pregnant- and it would have been terrible.

I don't have any experience with bipolar, I just know this makes it hard for both
of you to communicate. It seems you are able to acknowledge your feelings
without letting them control your reactions. So I think you're doing good.

My daughter had two miscarriages and I believe when that happens it's better
because the baby would have been born with serious problems. I don't think
your daughter would be able to deal with a baby like that at this stage of her
own life.

I just hope for both of you to stay sober and stay in what communication you
are able to manage.
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Old 07-07-19, 02:31 AM
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Re: My 19 year old troubled daughter was pregnant- and it would have been terrible.

You did the best you could as a mature parent. I'd hate to go through that. Sometimes immature young people think they see an easy way out of their problems, but it's really a disaster waiting to happen. Being a parent was the hardest role I ever had...and all I was struggling with back then was undiagnosed ADHD and not being prepared for a future job. I had a husband who was qualified for a job. I hope everything turns out better for all involved.
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Old 08-09-19, 07:13 PM
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Question Re: My 19 year old troubled daughter was pregnant- and it would have been terrible.

I could never think that you are a bad mum or a bad parent or a bad person. And there's nothing in your post to suggest that eigher. I can understand that the miscarriage is a relief and in a way it might be really be the best way out of a situation that doesn't have an easy or good solution..

I might be biased but I'm.glad that she's been spared the specific pain of an abortion. I'm sure a miscarriage is very hard to deal with too so be gentle both with her but also with yourself.

Huge hugs to all of you.
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