Encouragement for Parents in Pain

by | Aug 17, 2016 | Helpful Resources | 2 comments

“I can’t do this. I don’t know how much more I can take.” “I think I’m going to have a nervous breakdown.” ” I never 057knew someone could cause me so much intense heartache. This feels unbearable.” “To tell you the truth, I’m so wrecked over my child I’ve been thinking about ending my life.”  My husband and I talk to hurting moms and dads all the time. Comments like these are common. I’ve thought them myself. What about you, dear parent?

How is your heart today? If your child has an issue that’s impacting you: alcohol, weed, heroin or some other drug, repeated self-harm, addicted to pornography or video games, incarcerated, starves or binges with food, has a mental illness or struggles with suicidal thoughts, then you’re in pain – agonizing pain.

I’m a mom who can empathize. One of the things that has helped me the most is reading good material. The informative, encouraging, hope-giving kind. It might be a book or something I found on the internet, like a devotional email. My favorites were written either by other parents who’ve been in my shoes or by people who have learned from some form of suffering. Their journeys took them to dark places where they found priceless treasures of wisdom and insight. I wanted to glean from their experiences. I needed to, so that I could survive. Maybe you do, too?

These are 7 of my favorite quotes. I hope one of them will help you.

  1. God does not give us overcoming life: He gives us life as we overcome. – Oswald Chambers
  2. Forgiveness is a process that requires time for our emotions to come into agreement with the decision we have made . . . Staying stuck in protest over the hurts your prodigal has caused you will not get you the peace or joy you want. Releasing resentments not only frees your child to start again, but it also releases you from the bondage of hatred and fear.  – The Hope of a Homecoming, p. 177, O’Rourke and Sauer.
  3. Relapse is to recovery like white is to rice. It is almost an expectation, particularly the first time the addict attempts to abandon the lifestyle . . . During these times our support systems rise to the occasion and carry us through the hurt. Cherish each day as you revel in the laughter and joy of sobriety. We don’t know what tomorrow holds, and our joy may end in grief. Live one day at a time with great expectancy and hope in the One who holds our loved ones in the palms of his hands.  – Praying for Your Addicted Loved One: 90 in 90, Day 46, Sharron K. Cosby.
  4. To let a child fall on his or her face is, in my opinion, the most loving gesture a parent can make toward a child . . . This doesn’t mean that a parent should neglect the child in any way, or even refuse to offer help when necessary. It simply means to learn when that offer of help is necessary.  – Don’t Let Your Kids Kill You, p. 61, Charles Rubin
  5. For me, healing started when I made the choice not to be a victim but instead to be responsible for me. As many families have found, we don’t have to wait until our loved ones start to get better before we can begin our own healing process . . . “Healing is about us, not about our addicts.”  – Addict in the Family, Conyers, p. 139
  6. For each of us there comes a time to let go. You will know when that time has come. When you have done all you can do, it is time to detach. deal with your feelings. Face your fears about losing control. Gain control of yourself . . . free others to be who they are. In so doing, you will set yourself free.  – Codependent No More, Beattie, p. 82
  7. 022When God seems most absent from us, He is doing His most important work in us . . . When dreams shatter and God disappears, we don’t need to get mad at Him, to be afraid of Him, or to obey Him from a distance . . . We need rather to realize that He vanishes from our sight to do what He could not do if we could see Him. I know of nothing so difficult to believe. But it’s true.  – Shattered Dreams, Larry Crabb, p.158


  1. Martha Sue Pritchard

    So here I am looking for words to encourage a friend with a difficult daughter outlaw ( not married to her son). I am 26 yrs sober by God’s Mercy & Grace and my friend and her son are also in recovery programs. I was encouraged by these offerings. Thanks for all it took to put this together. Your efforts blessed my day. Now I can pass it on!!!

    • Tom and Dena Yohe

      Thank you for letting us know that something you read on our site encouraged you. We all need more of that, don’t we!? Have a good day today as you continue to walk the road of recovery! And bless you for seeking to help your friend. I hope what we offer will continue to be a source of strength for them.