Please bear with me, this will be long altho I'll try to shorten it. I'm new here. Glad to have found this site. I am 56, & the grandma of an Aspie 16 year old grandaughter (GD for short). I have legal custody because her parents are addicts & abandoned her. Her mother, my daughter, has been in & out of her life, mostly out. So I have raised my GD along with help from my mother who also lives with us (89 yrs old but still with it mentally). I didn't know anything about aspies until a year ago when I saw a movie about it. I had an aha moment & realized there is a name & a condition for my GD's weirdness. She has most of the symptoms so her dr. diagnosed her with it. School has been a complete nightmare, forgetting to do homework, not turning it in (still is a problem). I won't go into all the ways I know she is an aspie, just the ones that bother me the most. To back up, my daughter has given birth to 3 other babies that were adopted out. (I refused to raise all her kids, just the 1st one). They all had diff fathers, she's a prostitute, etc. My GD was too young to be upset by the other adoptions but this last one happened just a few months ago. My daughter came to our house pg, I didn't want her living there with us with a baby because I knew she'd leave & I'd be stuck raising the baby. GD was angry at me about that, wanted her little sister to be with us. It was hell with my daughter living here (4 generations of women living together!!) She was rude to me & didn't appreciate anything. My mother even sided with them & they all ganged up against me. I had to leave for 3 weeks to preserve my sanity. At the time I left I told them all I wasn't coming back. But I did & I relented & said my daughter could live with us & my daughter ended up leaving anyway 2 weeks B4 the baby was born. Baby was born addicted & put in a medical foster home. I took GD to see the baby several times. Then baby was adopted out. Parents have kept in touch with pics & are coming to visit us. So at least GD still has baby sister in her life. My GD & I used to get along great until this all happened. Now she is angry all the time, resents me, treats me rudely most of the time & denies being rude or ungrateful. I've called her an ungrateful little brat (which she is) but I should not say things like that. Our home is a landmine. We walk on eggshells trying to never ask GD any questions or be in the same room she is in because she gets angry & rude. Mostly it's just snubbing us, not cussing at us or anything. But hard to live with. Then she expects money & favors all the time. We have NO -- ZERO cooperation in our home. I can't talk to her about school or anything else. We tried counseling for 6 months, the counselor said she is a closed shell, she could not get thru to her & my GD hated me more for taking her to counseling. She refuses all activities except going to the mall or movies with her 3 only friends & only when THEY initiate it. Otherwise she stays in her room all the time. I tried making her go to church with me, youth group too, it made my life more of a living hell than it already is. I have no idea what she feels, thinks, does. I'm not allowed to get close enough to her to smell her breath or see her pupils but I am 99.9% sure she is not doing anything bad. She just isolates all the time. I feel so bad, I feel like I should be teaching her about life, she won't let me teach her or tell her anything. She is taking drivers ed, took the test & we went & got her restricted license (which I paid $48 for & she treated me rudely all the way there). She had to have it for her class or I would not have done it. I said I would like to take her out driving, she said she doesn't need that & she certainly doesn't want to do it with me. I am a frickin nervous wreck 24/7 with this kid. I sooo love her & want her to be happy & successful. She is in denial that she has any problems whatsoever & she gets angry that I am in touch with her teachers & trying to help her get thru school. I need my freedom when she turns 18 because I've spent my life trying to help & take care of everyone else -- 1st my addict daughter, now my elderly mother & grandaughter. My siblings can help with my mother, I've done my part but I am so very concerned that my aspie GD will not be able to get a job & support herself or live on her own although she thinks she is capable of that. I have not told her this. Her wish was to be a vet & due to her grades in school the guidance counselor told her she would not get into college. I could never see that happening either although I never told her that. I do encourage her to think about other aspects of animal jobs, like grooming or vet tech or vet assist which she is taking in high school. I plan to FORCE her to volunteer at the animal shelter this summer to get experience in working with people, them giving her direction & chores to do, and then I am hoping & praying that one day they may hire her. I feel like I'm not doing my duty of teaching her about life (she is 16 but about 10 or 12 in development mentally & emotionally) but she won't let me. She desperately needs a mentor but is very disagreeable to meeting anyone new & doing that. She doesn't want to go to tutoring because "people breathe all over her" stuff like that. Yet the teachers tell me she is all over the boys in school. She doesn't treat everyone this way, she is respectful to her teachers & to other family members & adults in her life -- but me, the one who takes care of her, loves her, cares about her, wants the best for her & wants her to succeed, well I'm trash & nothing. There is NO affection in our home, no words of encouragement or comfort because she does not want to hear them. She is an isolated island & I am so afraid for her. I am also embarrassed to say I am afraid for me because I cannot keep living like this & I WON'T. I'm not living with ANYBODY who treats me this way. I don't see it changing. I don't even know if she will be able to drive a car by herself. She knows NOTHING about the world & refuses to learn or go to classes or anything. I am going to find an occupational therapy class or a life skills class & MAKE her go. I am also hoping that once she gets a car, if she is even able to drive, she will feel more free & independent & maybe she will then treat me better but I doubt it. I can't live this way... I won't. I love her but I'm not going to live this way any longer than I have to. I have written her deadbeat dad who is in prison until April but who sounds like he is doing well & he writes her all the time, and I told him he needs to step up to the plate when she's 18 because I'M DONE.... I've tried being nice, I've tried being strict, I've taken things away, I've refused favors, I've gone overboard with favors, I've tried counseling & church, I've tried everything & I cannot reach this kid.... now I'm trying just staying in my own room & doing my own thing & letting her figure her own life out. I don't ask about homework anymore, it is just too stressful for me to even talk to her. So we all just sit in our rooms & isolate & there is little to no communication with her.... so very sad -- I miss our relationship & the fun we had together -- it is gone forever. Too much damage has been done on both sides.. I was blamed for my daughter's addiction (you were too strict) now I'm afraid I will be blamed for my GD's life however it turns out. I'm grateful she is not drinking, sex, drugging, smoking etc. I thank God every day for that. I think I should be happy she is home & isolating herself instead of out running around & pg like my daughter was. But I feel so bad for her & I worry how her life will turn out. I also worry about mine ... thanks for listening, I guess I want to hear you say "leave her alone, let her figure it out, try to stay peaceful, and when she's 18 take your freedom". That seems to be the only thing left to do.... I am in CODA meetings & they help alot. But I don't try to control my GD so much as just help her get thru school & learn to live independently so she can go live her life & I can go live mine.... now that I've written this all out I think the answers are there -- find classes that will help her learn life skills & independence & force her to go.... at least I will feel like I've done SOMETHING to help her... what do you think?
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