Good morning everyone. I do have a bit of an update.
My last update had my son living with my niece and family. Interesting one of my final posts on this topic talked about my niece implying we were the problem for my son. On Boxing day that year we got a phone call from my niece screaming that my son had gotten into an altercation with her husband (hmm, hmm) and broke her husband's glasses. Well by then six months had passed and honestly we didn't really know what to do. So, i called social services, who's advice we had been taking all along and told them they had to find emergency shelter for my boy (remember he was 1800 km away from us). That turned into months of crazy. We were looking for mental health services for our son social services were trying to wash their hands of situation. (FYI, My niece eventually apologized to me saying she had no idea the seriousness of my son's mental health and that indeed she had thought it was just a parenting conflict.)
The problem we had was we knew too much had happened in the six months boy was away from us that made him coming home unsafe for our other children.
Anyway, fast forward he's been in a group home for past years, diagnosed with schizophrenia (on top of his former reactive attachment disorder and oppositional defiance disorder). We heard from him occasionally in first year but calls were very traumatic . . . spewing all kinds of vile things at us. The only two "kind" things he every said was "well one thing you were a good cook" and "I shouldn't have gone to meet (birthmother)".
That first year after his relationship with my niece ended was horrible. Like a death only we knew he wasn't dead. We kind of knew where he was but he had told social worker not to tell us anything and in our Province kids over the age of 12 have the right to impose those kind of restrictions.
Fast forward. . . .9 months ago we left the town i was born in and raised our children. We needed a new start. (Remember aside from the son i'm talking about here, we also have another boy with FASD and a whole host of specialness (but he is well attached). Honestly I can't believe my husband and i are still married through all our stress. Anyway we moved to a community we knew (at least reasonably knew) was less than 2 hours away from where we last knew our son lived.
Late November 2016 (two weeks after he turned 19) I received a text "Hi, this is (son's name". I was shocked. Like a big shock to my body. And scared. Like why now was he contacting us after years of no contact. So i responded cautiously. A few texts back and forth followed by a text the next day asking for $10. I almost died. Was he only after money. It was killing me because i wanted to continue the dialogue but my husband and I didn't know anything about him and did not want to set ourselves up as a bank for him. So after a few hours I replied "no to money but next time dad and I are in (his town) we'd be happy to take you out for a meal". So two weeks later we connected with him and invited him out to lunch. We were terrified . . . our families were terrified too but probably for different reasons. But we saw him for the first time in years. My mother's heart wanted to grab and hug him but that didn't happen. We had a pleasant meal. He is quite medicated for his mental health issues (which he readily talked about). He tried to shock us with stories of drug use and other things but we've experienced so many things with our other special child that nothing can shock us . . which actually diffused the situation very quickly. He looks kind of the same. A bit heavier. I noticed things like his nails were dirty but overall he looked pretty good.
As we left town, I texted him saying "dad and I were so happy to see you today and would love to take you out again some time." He responded with "cool. okay."
And that was the last we've heard from him.
I've texted a couple times with no response but he knows how to connect with us so I'll continue to text occasionally but the whole things seems like a dream. . . did it really happen. As bittersweet as the whole thing has been (meeting him) it was SO good to see him and a much better ending than when he got on the plane to connect with his birthmother.
So that's my high level update. (FYI the first year after he left was filled with all kinds of drama . . . if my boy only knew how much we advocated for him to make sure he was not homeless and/or hungry. . . )