Meeting humility face to face

Back in 2010 when things with my youngest son, Charles, started to go off the rails, I had to come face to face with my parental pride.

I had to readjust, accept, and alter my expectations. I had to face people who blamed our family’s problems on my unworthiness as a parent. I had to figure out how to come to terms with being the target of a lot of gossip and learn to dismiss it and focus on that which was more important.

Before then, I wonder how often I may have blamed parents for a child’s drug problem or blamed my own son’s issues on others. Surely, it wasn’t us. It had to be the friends.

Maybe I was braggy, ignored parents struggling with the disability of a child, dismissing it as “not my problem.”  Did I consider how hard all of this would have been if I were a single parent? Maybe I didn’t really think about any of us, ask about it, or otherwise pay attention. Perhaps I was content to be in my safe, naive little bubble.

I honestly don’t remember.

I do, however, remember my decent into humility and how it changed me.  I became less opinionated, listened more and became more open-minded. I admitted to powerlessness in controlling anyone other than myself.

Nothing has been more humbling than suffering through the mental illness and addiction of my youngest child and then losing him to suicide. This is one of the gifts of surviving extreme adversity.

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Anne Moss Rogers

I am the mother of two boys and the owner of emotionally naked, a site that reached a quarter million people in its first 18 months. I am a writer and professional public speaker on the topics of suicide, addiction, mental illness, and grief and currently working on getting a book published. I lost my youngest son, Charles, 20, to suicide June 5, 2015. As talented and funny as Charles was, letting other people know they matter was his greatest gift. And now the legacy I try and carry forward in my son's memory.

4 thoughts on “Meeting humility face to face”

  1. Forgive me for using this phrase, but ” Hindsight is 20/20.” Unless you had already experienced it, how would you have known? You should never blame yourself for being naive. I personally had zero experience with drug use, so I missed a lot of the signs when my son was using. And despite some family history of depression and addiction, I sill failed to connect the dots. When another mother criticized and judged me, I truly wondered if it WAS my fault and what COULD I have done to prevent it. I’d love to tell her now, “Congratulations! You reared perfect children! Why didn’t you package that secret and sell it to the rest of us?” In a place where you have lost hope, the only thing to do is to develop patience. While this isn’t what you would have chosen, your terrible loss is helping others. Thank you again.

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