Watching someone you love in pain, is probably, to me, the most challenging event I can fathom. Children, mothers, fathers, sisters brothers… observing the suffering of another is never easy.. and all one wants to do is fix it! The thing is… you can’t. We are not responsable for other’s choices, and when we love that person the most heartbreaking event is letting go.
You see, last year a very close family member I will call Charles, has been diagnosed with Bi-Polar disorder type II. After a 10 year spill with alcohol and drugs, and disappearing for a week, Andy brought Charles to the Doctor (holding his hand with love) and Charles vowed to get well.. His intentions were grand.. he had a toddler to raise and a family to feed. Yet, despite all the love, support and attention Charles was receiving.. his life was falling apart and to his eyes: we all let him down…
His perception of what we were trying to do was discombobulated by guilt and shame, and he saw our “tough love” as unwelcoming love, and he shut down. How does one convince someone suffering from depression that we are there for him? Really there is no way… I’ve tried everything.. Letters, songs, support, phone calls, visits, and extending love from East to West .. North to South.. I HAD TO LET GO!!!! literally let go.
Today, I had to convince Andy to let go too. His guilt far surpasses his will to do so, but he must. I really do think once Andy lets go.. Charles will resurface and hopefully stronger than ever.
…but if he doesn’t we will know we did everything in our power to show Charles we love him unconditionally!