There is no more helpless feeling in the world than being the parent of an adult child.
We raise them, we let them go. Sometimes they fly and sometimes they crash and die. Our human instinct, however, does not allow us to take such an intellectual approach to the realities of life. They’re our children, after all.
The Star Tribune’s Paul Walsh does a masterful job today of relaying the helplessness felt by Bob Bloomberg, whose 26-year old daughter, Jessica, was found with her roommate in the 2900 block of 3rd Street North in Minneapolis.
The engine of the car was still running when the cops broke the window.
They were dead. Two more nameless victims of a drug overdose. Two more paragraphs deep in the newspaper that we might notice, if not read, before we turn to the sports section.
But Walsh found a father that could see what would soon happen and couldn’t let go.
“Jessica was very troubled by drugs and alcohol for the last 10 years,” Bob Bloomberg said Tuesday, pointing to repeated drunken-driving arrests and a stint in detox. “She was no angel.”
He said he pleaded with Jessica and his ex-wife to get their daughter into a rehab program, “and now I wish I would’ve pushed even harder on that.”
Bob Bloomberg felt his tough times with Jessica were diminishing in the summer of 2015. They were on good terms again, and she was in counseling.
“I was so hopeful that we were turning a corner,” he said. Just to make sure she didn’t stray, Bob Bloomberg would check court records to see whether Jessica was hiding any further run-ins with the law, and he found nothing.
But what he did find in one search was a methamphetamine allegation against her live-in boyfriend. When he revealed this discovery to his daughter, Bob Bloomberg immediately met her wrath.
In these times, words of comfort to parents usually involve, “you did all you could” which is all any parent can do, of course.
It’s cold comfort.