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Any parents of heroin addicts here?
Hello,
   I am a mother of an 18 year old daughter who is addicted to heroin.
   She, like many others, started out on oxycontin. When she became immune to the higher doses of oxy., she started snorting heroin. Of course, I had no idea she was using until I found out by accident after she had been doing it for many months. We immediately put her into inpatient rehab. We could only get a total of 18 days inpatient and a total of 4 months outpatient covered by insurance and other available services.
   We thought she was doing well, and she of course, learned to hide it very well. If I hae learned anything from this whole horrible experience, addicts are devious, amazing liars. She managed to pull the wool over not only OUR eyes, but the outpatient counselors eyes as well! We just found out the other day that she relapsed and is now shooting heroin for 3 months.
   Finding this news out is both devistating, and hurtful to me and my husband. We feel we have given her all the love and support, counseling, and treatment we could. We even started trusting her again, which I thought I would never do! How could she do this to us???!!! I understand it's the drug that is more enticing than pleasing your family, but the hurt is overwhelming.
   We put her in detox and this is only day 3 for her right now.
   I wondered if there are any other parents out there who can share their feelings, frustrations, and stories with me.
Thanks.
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Thank you soo much!!! That helped untie many knots in my brain. Its amazing how handicapped this situation makes our vision and decision making process. It's as if it drains all of our intelligence, I can give advice to others, yet my mind freezes when I need it to kick in most.!!! Thank's again and thank you for sharing that story of the rose drawing. It's ironic but as bad as thigs are deep own I know they could worse - somehow!
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1530493 tn?1410060236
Your so emotionally attached, makes it near impossible to see understand or know what direction to head in.
Reaching out, asking for help. ..is our biggest asset :)
The day may come, that I may need your guidance.
We can see it clearly when it isn't our child, but want to guide...like it is.
Your gaining strength and experience that your not aware of yet.
Each day your progressing, your going to be fine dad and so is your son. ...he has you !!
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My youngest daughter, 26, is a heroin addict. She is also addicted not just to the drug, but to the needle. I've been telling her that for a couple of years, but she is just now kind of getting that. Addicts do get addicted to the equipment, paraphernalia and such, but the needle is particularly addicting. I don't want to get into all of that now, but just want to say that I have been the typical enabling parent. Vacillating  between tough love and giving her money. Her dad and I finally joined forces this past month. She had been able to get lump sums of money from him, but no more. We cannot give her any cash, and she is not allowed unsupervised in my house. She is taking suboxone, which does seem to help, but I hold onto it and she takes it in front of me. She is an expert at lying and stealing and conning and has successfully finagled things in the past. I do not trust her at all. She would steal my last dollar, leave me without money for food. She has done it before. It has made a huge difference having her dad on my side working with me to save her. We are very early in this team process, but I do have hope.
A lot of people don't like suboxone, but I have seen it work wonders for my other, older daughter, who uses nothing now. And I've seen it work for my 26 year old, but it has to be monitored and make sure she takes enough often enough that it doesn't wear off and allow her to use heroin. I have also seen people abuse suboxone, but in our case, it's been a useful tool.
We shall see. It requires extreme diligence, and is a rollercoaster, but I will not give up.
I wish everyone here success with your children. Never let your guard down and don't ever take the path of least resistance just because it is so exhausting. It is easy to do in a moment of feeling drained. And believe me, an addict can tell when you're tired and they will strike as soon as they sense it. Always be suspicious, even after they've been doing great for a while. The reach of opiates arm is very very long.
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1530493 tn?1410060236
Hi mimi !!!!
Your post hit a note with me...also addicted to the needle, how true that is.
Sounds like positive direction going on in your / your daughters life.  It makes a  WORLD of difference when all family members work together !!
I'm sorry this is your second run with this. ..it's life draining.
My 3 kids each were touched by drugs at different levels. My 2 oldest found their way on their own....my youngest son, I can only describe as being touched by some un-human force as there was no way he should have survived. He is 2 1/2 years clean and the one that took me on the of my life.
Suboxone has its place,  I believe the best fit...is heroin addiction.
When were told to stay away from it...it's trading one addiction for another,  in many situations it proves to be a worse choice as I know how hard they are to wean from.
BUT...using that drug to replace heroin, is saving MANY lives as long as it's used they way its intended.
What your doing is tough...controlling every situation, it Can drain the life out of you
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1530493 tn?1410060236
Silly thing posted before I was ready :)
Anyways. ..glad you found your way here. Having others that know your life,  is great support.
Use us and GOOD LUCK to you all.
As you know this is NOT hopeless,  you've seen recovery once with your other daughter...you can see it again !!
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Deb,

Ha...I knew I'd hear about replacing one drug for another, but it's okay. I get that and know that suboxone can be abused just as badly as any drug. Oh, I did read your entire reply and know you weren't knocking me or the use of suboxone in general. It's been a blessing for my oldest. After that first 7-10 days with the youngest, she got more stable and even. I am seeing more and more of her sweet funny normal personality as opposed to the monster that heroin turns her into.

I hate heroin.

Thanks for writing and noticing me.

mimi
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1530493 tn?1410060236
I'm not at all knocking suboxone...it saved my son's life !!!
I heard it too, one drug replacing another. ..blah blah blah.
That was all we had left to try and i was willing to try anything.
In my opinion I would rather have my son on subs for life than shooting heroin.
I for one believe your doing the right thing
Good luck to you
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absolutely! rebecca (daughter) still has some issues with control being taken away from her, but we are still in infancy in our situation. believe it or not, and I know you can, she was off heroin for a year just doing suboxone once before. Then she ran into her old best friend from grade school who happened to be living with a drug dealer and had advanced to shooting up heroin as well. so sad. This girl had been in college, majoring in physical therapy and had a little boy about 3-4 years old. so they got back in touch with each other. Needless to say, rebecca got back in touch with heroin too. so when I say the arm of addiction has a long reach, I mean it can transcend a lot of time and situations. this is why addicts have to leave everything, and I mean everything about their old life behind them and carve out something new and foreign to them. Yet another battle they have to fight. I do know there are people who have accomplished this on their own, but that is the exception, not the rule.
I, for one, have been unable to embrace the 12 step programs. I have issues with some of the early steps. I do not understand them, nor do I personally believe that one of those programs is the be-all/end-all for addictions of any kind. I know they work quite well for some people, and kudos to them. whatever works for an individual is the only way to go.
I am so happy for you and your son. Suboxone certainly can and does work, but like those programs, it isn't for everybody. There will never be just one way, one answer that fits everyone. Like you, I would much rather anyone on subs than shooting heroin. or anything.
Apologies for the haphazard capitalization problem in my sentences. My shift button doesn't always produce the capital letter!
I so hope everyone fighting this fight finds a way to win. all we can do is share our individual experiences and make suggestions.
I hope all of our stories help somebody somewhere.

I hate heroin.

Mimi
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Hello I read your story, Im so sorry. I too know what your going thru, but Ive been going thru it for 7 years now. My daughter started using Heroin at 18 she is now 24,It has been a constant  roller coaster, she has been in  or should I say we have done 13 rehabs God knows you go thru it right them. she completed one. she has been in and out of jail. she Is now on the streets for awhile I let her shower and eat because my heart could not take my child being out there,cold and hungry she played that card for a long time. just in the last month My other children yes two Boys 18 and 22 sat down with me and said we cant let her do this to you anymore. or us.. So we stop letting her in the house. she stills shows up out front almost everyday. I beg and plead if she would get help go into a rehab she would have her family back I would help her in every way but she wont do it... she showed up yesterday, she looks BAD. I think shes going to die I try to tell myself im doing the right thing..My heart feels for you because you've just begun the battle and it is just that a battle with the devil..I just pray that you and your daughter win. I think my childs rock bottom is death.  My thoughts and prayers are with all of us that are going thru this Hell. God Bless.  
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Hey,
wow you have really been through it. I am so sorry that you have to go through this.
I've been through plenty with my daughter, Rebecca. What I haven't mentioned is that I lost my son at age 29, not to heroin, but he had high blood pressure, was a high functioning alcoholic, and had a girlfriend who convinced him to do coke one night just 3 1/2 months after he'd had a heart attack. After this girl and he came home, I didn't wake up and I always wake up. But I didn't hear anything. I slept through it all. The next day, I found him in bed. On his stomach. Dead. He'd been dead about 2 hours. That day changed me forever. Worst day of my life. That was my little boy who loved He-Man and GI Joes and wrestlers. That was my grown son who loved the New England Patriots and college basketball and the NBA. That was my son who worked 5-6 days a week and was promoted to foreman. Gone. Over some dumb sh*t.
Not only that, my oldest daughter got addicted to pain medicine when she was in the hospital, pregnant with a bad gallbladder. They gave her so much morphine and stadol I was shocked. Yes, the baby was born addicted. But she's all good now.l  My daughter got to taking up to 25, yes 25, oxycodone 30mg pills a day. She got on suboxone and she's doing great now. Thank the good Lord.
My son is dead. My one girl is good. Now...I just gotta get through Rebecca's problem. She's doing ok now, but I never let my suspicion or my guard down completely.
Your girl has been to 13 rehabs? wow. I wish I had an answer for you, but I will mention Casey's Law. Google it. Parents can use it on their adult children. They will get court ordered rehab without having to have committed a crime basically.
My thoughts and prayers out to you.

I hate heroin.

Mimi

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1530493 tn?1410060236
For the love. .first of all,  I'm sorry for the pain you face.  Your boys are right, sometimes we have to put ourselves first just to survive.
Please don't give up hope.
Many of our kids go to the darkest places, just before the flip, including my son.
We were in all the places you describe,  right down to me praying it would end in what ever way. ..just so we could both find peace. I too thought his rock bottom would be death.
The final time I saw my son high. ..I found him blue from pills with a slit wrist.
He was and iv heroin addict.
He survived, but something in me died that night.
I let him go for the final time,  I decided I wasn't going to be the one to find him dead.
he was left totally alone with his addiction,  I was the last one to let go.
Something clicked in him that night too like the flip of a switch.
He did it with suboxone and fully committed for the first time in his nearly 8 year addiction.  He's near 2 1/2 years clean now,  something I never expected to see.
Anyways...I wanted to let you know desperate dad hasn't been around in awhile. But the last time I talked with him, his daughter was doing very well with the once a month vivitrol shot.
Heroin addiction is nearly impossible to walk away from. ..most need LONG term rehab,  or some type of maintenance to give their mind a chance to feel normal,  giving them a chance to heal, and relearn life.
Honey. ..your at the lowest low and a very painful spot with your daughters addiction. I know how hard it is to turn your back but sometimes that's the only thing you have left to do.  I would offer her help another time...the shot is something that can't be abused or sold.  Let her know you'll be there only to help her recover.
We enable them in so many unknown ways. ..we need to let them make their addiction their own.  Many times when that happens, when they find themselves alone. ... they figure out its not the life they want
Saying a prayer for you and your daughter, never say never. ..ok

Mimi...I'm so sorry,  a mother's nightmare.
Hugs to you both
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can you tell me more about vivitrol? rebecca is on suboxone, which has worked before, but I have doubts about her right now. Nothing I can prove definitively, but if there is an injection she can get, that would be fab. PLEASE tell me more about this. does it work? Any info will be appreciated.

I hate heroin.

Mimi
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1530493 tn?1410060236
I haven't had actual experience with it, subs were the main course of action when we went through it, but everyone I've talked to about it has had success. But of course it still needs to be up to the addict being committed  to sobriety.
Sounds like your daughter would be a good fit, also making life easier for you.
Go to www.vivitrol.com will allow you to do a search for a doctor to offer this treatment to you in your area.
It works like suboxone...blocks craving let's them feel normal. I still absolutely recommend meetings, out patient rehabs, individual counseling as they need to learn how to let go of the addicted mind. What works for one will not work for all.  Once she is heading in the right direction, if she tells you rehab or meetings only cause her to think drugs...Hear her.  My son could not do it that way, he said all rehab and meetings did for him was make him want to head right out to his next high.  It didn't help that he attended those meetings with his using buddies, also in the same spot as he.
He did individual counseling one on one focused on him. We took the mental health route the final time instead of focusing on addiction programs that never worked for him.
So now that I got off subject, back to the shot :)
Its a once  a month shot, time released over the month.  No worry about using subs or misusing...or selling.  It's a one year treatment.
I would definitely check out their Web site,  also a number you can call with any and all questions.  Many say it's a money thing,  like replacing one drug with another. ..but...when in our shoes it ALL needs to be given a chance.
Keep me updated ok !!
Good luck...I believe your on the right track ;)
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Hey, Deb, I just wanted to comment on the meeting situation with your son. I totally understand that. I am not of the mindset that NA, AA, and all the other 12-step programs with meetings are for everybody. It's actually difficult in my area to find people who agree with me so I wanted to speak up. These meetings, to me, are not productive. My experience has been there is a lot of war stories that are told, and I personally have a problem with the steps themselves. I get the whole "it;s a disease" idea, but I don't necessarily agree with this mentality. I think it is true to some extent, but I do think this idea is used by people as an excuse. I've encountered people who say I can't help it, it's a disease, and completely absolve themselves of all accountability. I don't know.....I'm glad it works for some people, but it was never for me or any of my kids. I am curious as to if you or your son have had any negativity from expressing this to others. I have found, especially among the non-experienced, that people think if you aren't involved in meetings and a 12-step program, then you will be unsuccessful. Thanks for the info.

Mimi
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1530493 tn?1410060236
You know right from the beginning I myself knew the meetings were more destructive to my son,  I went to several with him. All his using buddies were there,  most not because they wanted to be, I swear they made arrangements ( the friends ) where to meet after to get high.  That was his only contact with them but it was enough.  I believe if they're committed and not with peers it might have helped,  as that was what I was told. ..but the first time he told me all the meetings did for him was make him want to use,  he confirmed my gut feeling.
He still goes to self help meetings when he feels he needs it. Different enviorment, people that are committed not forced to be there all in different stages of recovery....it definitely  builds his " I can do it " attitude. I also have to say if he started with self-help I'm not sure that would have been the answer.   It seemed to be the right order of the right help to get him there.
Started with psychiatrist, the right meds and one on one counseling then on to self help.  
As for it being a disease, I'm also not entirely sure,  but I do believe many factors play a part.  I believe every one of us are addicted to something in life, good or bad. Some find themselves drawn to drugs just to take the edge off. I will never believe an addict sets out to become an addict.   We all want to feel in control of our lives, I believe they go the drug route fully believing they have control,  until it's too late.
coping skills ...some of us it comes naturally others need to learn how.
My son never felt normal in life ( undiagnosed  adhd, with hyper activity leading to extreme anxiety )  his mind raced.  Drugs slowed it. He had no intention of becoming an addict...he just wanted to function.
What else I seem to find in most they have hearts of gold, they know how to give but don't know how to receive. So is it a disease. ..I'm not sure ?
I have learned each addict has to do it their way when it comes to recovery, but the story is the same getting them there.
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I am a mother of two girls Ashley Joy a 27 year old heroin addict and Emily Simone a 19 year old, I just did the Marchman Act on het in Florida where the police pick her up and bring her into a rehab for evaluation for 72 hours. She needs to stay clean and stop prostituting to get her heroin. She has scammed me enough. I feel there they can evaluate her and see if she is bipolar. I also am evicting her because she is still not going to pay rent. I want to cry because there is so much pain involved. I could not warn her because she would run. We never had the bonding when she was born. She had jaundice and the nurses thought she had spinabifida, Thus she was taken from me. We have a hard relationship. I want to be honest and follow the law and she is used to running for heroin and crack. She is killing herself slowly. I am afraid.
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1530493 tn?1410060236
Hi susan.
First of all no guilt ok.  You had nothing to do with her choice.
We give our all trying to "fix" them,  it only destroys us. ..they need to want it, before any change can happen.
In my opinion  the mental health route,  is the way to go. The underlying cause needs to be found.  
My son is a recovering IV heroin addict. ..2 1/2 years clean,  I still to this day can't believe I can write that.   I thought there was no hope, many rehabs, many jail sentences,  many meetings...nothing worked until he had a mental health evaluation, and treated for chemical imbalance.  
It didn't come easy,  actually far from it.  
I needed to let him go after years of giving my all ( I was the last ).  When his addiction became his own. ..no one left in his life, he figured out ...on his own. .it wasn't the life he wanted.
Today he still works on his recovery...it will be life long.

Your doing all the right things mom as painful as it is...your giving your daughter a chance.
We enable them in ways we never think of as enabling.  
Most times the way we love for our addicts hurt them more.
Be strong sweetie...
Please up date us...your not alone,  we're here for you
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Hi my name is Dolly. My 24 year old daughter will not admit to using Heroin. She was diagnosed with an Inoperable Brain Tumor at 21 and met her current BF at 22. He was a Reformed Addict when she met him.
In the last 12 months she has withdrawn, refuses to go back to her Neurologist, lost 80 lbs. the list goes on & on. I will not allow her to come stay here at my home due to suspicion she and the BF are both using Heroin.
I'm not sure what is appropriate tough love and what is abandonment. This is all new to me. Help!! In the past I exuded tough love with my Sister, who eventually got clean from Crystal Meth. And is 15 years clean. I'm so confused & distraught.
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1530493 tn?1410060236
Hi Dolly
So sorry your in this spot,  stay with us...we know how overwhelming,  confusing and heartbreaking it can be, you don't have to do this alone.
If you suspect heroin, please educate yourself the best you can on heroin addiction.   It's a very hard long road, but doable.  Don't ever feel there is no hope, because there is.
my son was a severe iv heroin user...he's now 2 1/2 years into his recovery.
I was very ignore to addiction especially  heroin...what I found very helpful, but extremely painful,  do it at your own pace, was to watch you tube videos of heroin addicts, what I saw, was my son.   My first step was no longer denying.
We need to learn to put us first and how fight for our lives too.  They can make us very sick.

Learn the signs...some being... pinpoint pupils, extremely tired, to extreme agitation... nodding off mid sentence or in the middle of doing something, weight loss,  general unhealthy appearance, slow Interaction.
we as parents tend to enable them in ways we don't believe to be enabling.  We love them,  many times with heroin addiction, loving them the way we do...only hurts them more.
Only she can change her, as sad as that is to say, nothing you do can make that happen.
great words said here " Support their recovery...not their addiction ".  When ever you question what you may or may not be doing for your daughter...ask yourself that question...what am I supporting.
if we keep them in a comfort zone,  shelter,  food, money, etc. They have no reason to change.   I'm sure your familiar with the words Rock Bottom, unfortunately most if not all heroin addicts need to hit that bottom hard to want to change their lives,  as parents we need to help guide them in that direction.
You will NEVER abandon your daughter,  but you may need to learn how to love her from a distance for awhile.  
Making her addiction her own is much easier said than done, but is the beginning of their change.
Find as much support for yourself as you can.  It's VERY important family work together.  My family knew my son was in big trouble...each one of us tried to "fix" him, we unknowingly allowed his addiction to intensify. Eventually we pulled together. ..we no longer gave him money, a place to live and yes even food.  Very hard to say those words. ..even tougher on the heart...we made his addiction his responsibility.
I guess what I would do if in your shoes,  I'd start by telling her your suspicions, be ready for nasty words between you and denial on her part( they don't want to be found out ).  Offer rehab, which BTW will need to be long term.   There are maintenance drugs to help them get and stay clean, even though it is replacing one drug with another... I know our ideal world is a sober child,  in the case of heroin most need extra help to kick it, along with what works for them. ..if it's meetings ,out patient rehab, counseling, self help.  They need to learn how to live the non addicted life.
My son tried many rehabs, had many jail sentences, what worked for him was the mental health approach.
he did have a suicide attempt that put him in the mental hospital. ..I refused to take responsibility for him on his release.  72 hours fixes nothing...I was afraid.   Because of my refusal he was put with a psychiatrist...one on one counseling, started on suboxone...he was held accountable for all his actions.  
Allowing your daughter to move in with you unless she is fully committed to recovery ( they will tell you any thing to make you believe ) will only bring greater pain.
There is so much to be said. ..please if you have questions...ask us,  we will do our best to guide you.
Your not alone. ..we're here for you.
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My son is an addict. He went to a rehab, Father martins Ashley and was doing great for a short period of time... Was in a halfway house. Got a good job, was excelling at it and then started using and got thrown out of the house. To make a long story short he was fired from the job and he ended up here, in our home using. I filed for an eviction, hearing is August 4th. We locked him out of the house, now he is squatting on our deck. Slept outside last night. Refuses to go to rehab. We have told him if he won't go to rehab, he can't stay here. He hadn't been aggressive, broken anything. How do I get him removed? I don't think the police can remove him at this point. Any suggestions?  My heart is broken watching this.
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1530493 tn?1410060236
Hi jaj
First of all your doing the right thing,  follow through with the 4th.   Is he aware of the pending eviction ?  Your in a wicked spot.
My son is a recovering heroin addict. ..he relapsed many times,  before he stayed clean.   Very few if any get it the first time around.  
Don't give up hope,  as it seems to come when we last expect it.
If he becomes aggressive breaks things you could call the law to have him removed.   Our kids usually don't expect that from us,  when they see we mean what we say, some times it makes them rethink, as far as hearing us.
we have to have boundaries and stick with them, and know in our heart were doing it FOR them.  
You know you can't change him. .this has to come from him.
Your right in telling him to leave if he continues to use.
most times we need to let them go,  to allow them to hit their rock bottom.
nothing about this will be easy,  find support for yourself, the rest of the family. ..it's very important for those closest to him to be on the same page, do it as a team.
We're here for you if you need us
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Hi Deb'

I haven't been here in a long time, No strenght all this past months. Trying to help my son with his addiction and no luck, still using. Finally we asked him to leave. He went to work this morning and didn't take anything with him, oit just a matter of days for him to loose his job. He has no car and now no place to stay Hardest thing in my life. I think I'm numb right now and worry what is going to happen. He is on methadone and this morning didn't take his dose I know why. He is going to get more junk. He also told me that he was going to take a good shot. I said is your choice I can't do anything for you anymore. Ohh my God this is horrible. My husband is suffering just as much as me. He is stronger. Our son is destroying our family. We don't do anything anymore because everything revolves around him.
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1530493 tn?1410060236
I think of you so often.
I'm glad you posted but so very sorry it's not with better news.
you've struggled so long
You have given your all and more,  there is nothing more you can do, remember  that ok ?
you need to work on you now, honey you'll make yourself sick if you don't back away.
We can't make anyone do something they don't want to.   I know how much you love your son,  in this case loving him out of sight will give him your final push of love, and you time to gain strength.
When the numb hits ( it always does ) is when it's time for you to take care of you.
I know you don't want to see your son lose it all, but you need to let it fall from his own doing.
it will be the hardest thing you do....know your doing this FOR him.
He won't change if you are always there to pick up the peices.
Painful I know...I'm here for you...we all are.
The good shot that your son refers to, i believe is a final last ditch effort of manipulation.  It scares us, they hope we back down.  In all reality each time they use could be that good shot, it's a deadly game they play
I wish I could tell you something different,  but you have to let him find his way with out guilt on your end.   He needs to come back to you in a desperate way and wanting with every bit of him change.   You will know when that time comes. ..it'll be very different than all the other times
When he hits his lowest low, is when you'll have the chance to truly help him.
give this all your strength one time more....tell him you love him too much to let him do this to him to you to your husband. When he's ready for help your there for him, but until then you need to back out.
over time it will come to this point or worse,  you have the opportunity now ...you all need time apart to heal,  it is in no way giving up..it's giving hope.
Stay close. ..your in my thoughts
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1530493 tn?1410060236
Thinking about you,  let me know how YOUR doing when you get a chance ?
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My daughter is 20 and a heroin addict.She has died and been revived 2 times.  In and out of jail and after 3 years of this kind of life she was put in a court ordered halfway house for 90 days of treatment . I got to have her home Saturday for a few hours on a pass. ( she has been in jail/treatment for 6months) We had a beautiful day of family time, she looked great, healthy and happy for the 1st time in years. Only to get a call on Sunday to find out she and another girl shot up at the rehab place and my daughter ran away. Now she has been put back in jail. I feel so betrayed, helpless and scared. I know I can't take her calls, write her letters ect as I only enable her to manipulate and hurt me again. My heart is so crushed.
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1530493 tn?1410060236
Awe sweetie....stay with us ok, well help get you through this.
Right now you know where she is. ..try to rest.
I know your mind is spinning out of control....so many questions....so many emotions.
Tonight were going to think of only you.  
My son too had a severe iv heroin addiction,  I haven't forgotten all the places he took me, very deep dark places.   I had one person that made me go forward,  I (we) want to be that to you.
We can't change our addicts,  that's their job,  your job is to learn how to take care of you now,  she'll need you strong for the day that she's ready.  
Right now you know excepting calls... writing... contact is only going to crush you more. ..follow those feeling.  
Give yourself time,  you've been hurt in deep ways.   Your daughter also needs to think,  maybe even wonder now where you are.  
We never give up on our kids,  but for our physical and emotional health we sometimes need to give them distance from us so change can happen. It's baby steps for us too.
my son's final time away from me...I was drained.   Felt everything you describe.  I couldn't force myself to have contact with him...he was in a safe place too.  Each time he called his messages got more desperate, more heartbreaking. ...all  he needed to know was I hadn't let him go, I couldn't give that to him the final time.
Something changed in both of us, when we had space.  
I began to heal and so did he.   Hes now a 3 year recovering addict
so honey. ..for you...each day if only for seconds at a time ...force your thoughts to anything/anywhere but on your daughter.
Each day will be a bit more doable than the day before.  
Keep busy. ...talk with us. ..write all you feel as often as you need.  
"Getting it out" is your first step, Any support is extremely important for you right now, and the more the better.
Let's get you in a better spot first then we'll talk about your daughter, but until that time. ..don't ever believe she can't recover. ...I know many that have.  
It so many times comes when it's least expected.
Hugs to you..your not alone




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Im so very happy your son got clean. I have just finished day 3 of the tough love cut off. Your words will help me thru this. My daughter released at rehab and ran when she knew she would drop dirty. In jail again. I have never hurt so bad having to stop all contact. She is my baby girl and I know I have been the biggest enabler in her life. I always rescued her. It hurts to walk away but knowing losing me may save her life. Nothing else has worked
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1530493 tn?1410060236
Your not walking away,  you never will. .. your her mom.  
Im not sure its even though love,  it's learning how to love her in a different way for now, for HER and her recovery.
Have you heard the expression
"we can love them to death " in the case of addiction,  protecting them only hurts them more,  leading them deeper.
It's our natural instinct, and so hard to let it go.
I was told a long time ago....support only their recovery not their addiction.  
I soon found myself questioning everything I did for my son.   Was I helping him by doing certain things. ...I finally figured out enabling,  as most everything I did enabled him.
I wish there were real answers.  
It seems to be what i call a process....We all give our all until there's nothing more to give,  it's not until we reach that numb state that we can start to back away.   In doing that we let their addiction become their own,  when theyre totally responsible for their actions,  their problems,  they many times begin to take a look at their life.
It's a hard thing to do. ..but remember why your doing it.
you want your baby girl back
Try to Look at it as giving her space so she can find her way.
Don't ever think the love between you 2 will suffer over this,  it'll only get stronger and yes it IS possible.
She's in jail,  use this time to your advantage, many mom's pay for jail ..she's safe, let her think, and you take time to rest your mind

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1530493 tn?1410060236
*Many mom's pray for jail *
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1530493 tn?1410060236
Thinking of you. ..
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Your post is so well written and so true.  May I share this with others in hopes of raising their awareness?
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1530493 tn?1410060236
Hi sc...
you absolutely can share any of my words,  if you feel they can help another.
I no longer keep quite. ..shame and stigma have to end.  We ALL need to fight together
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16127331 tn?1445538594
I found this group in a google search and started reading. I'd like to join. My 20 year old son withdrew from heroin last week - 6 days. I was so proud of him. The next day he borrowed my car because his had broken down and I haven't seen or heard from him since - going on the 4th night now. I have such mixed feelings and anxiety. The only option to get my car back (so I can go on about my life) is to call it in as stolen. I talked to a police officer last night and didn't want to do that because I gave him permission. He has done this once before, just before he decided to get clean. I am somewhat amazed at my enabling. If I hadn't watched him withdraw I would think differently. And I would not have lent him my car again. This is such a hard road.
Helen
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1530493 tn?1410060236
Hi Helen. ..so glad your here.
this is an extremely hard long painful road. ..not doing it alone is a bit of comfort.  We will be here for you in any way we can.
it often gets quiet here, please don't be discouraged, I try to check daily, I'm sure others will be around too.
first of all please don't give up hope. ..it IS doable.
you do know we can't fix them,  it can only come from him.
Enabling I believe is the hardest thing for us mom's to get a grip on...it goes completely against our natural instincts to protect our child at all cost.  
In the case of addiction, it could be deadly.
I finally got to the point and you will hear these words often here...it's reinforced with good reason " Support ONLY their recovery ...not their addiction ".
I began to live by those words. ..I questioned my every move when it came to giving or doing for my son.   Was I helping him...or hurting him more ???
Soon it came to me how badly I was enabling.  We do it in ways we don't even understand, until we stop for a moment and give it thought.
Manipulation of your emotions is a big part of addiction, which I'm sure your living  Nasty words,  Anger,  threats, violent behavior. .right down to the tears and begging...ripping our heart strings.  It's a way for them to stay active.
your son is in there. ..it's the addiction that needs to be fought.
it's a process that you can't make happen, the heart stands in the way,  eventually numb happens...I guess that becomes our protection.
we can and will get just as sick if not more sick than them.
We as parents need to try to find a balance  of looking out for us, while learning how to detach with love FOR them.

Heroin is a tough drug to kick...educate yourself the best you can on this type of addiction...know the signs.   Ask us questions...no question is unimportant.
Most need long term care therapy, counseling, meetings, rehab that they are fully willing to participate in. They need to relearn life without drugs and new coping skills.
Withdrawing from heroin is only the beginning.
he has your car,  I don't want to assume, but I highly suspect he has it to use.
I know getting the police involved is not what you want to do, but at this point it might be in his best interest.
we need to learn to make them responsible for their own actions...the trouble they find,  the fines they need to repay.  While it will feel overwhelming, when they realize they are only digging deeper with no one to help get them out of their mess...many will ask for help.
Let us help hold your worries. ...don't ever feel you can't talk with us here.  Each one of us have or have had addiction in our lives


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16127331 tn?1445538594
Thanks for your words.
A friend came to take me to lunch today and as she brought me home there was my car, parked in front of the house of Dan's friend from childhood. I was so relieved to know he wasn't dead or laying hurt somewhere. He'd been hiding out from some guys who wanted to make them pay for giving a ride to a dealer who stole some meth. Going a different place every day. He worked that out with the head guy of the bad dudes and four of them are going to pay those guys $30 each. Sheesh - he sure knows how to get himself into stuff with the wrong people. Anyway, he was stoned from weed, but said he hadn't used otherwise. I think I'll believe about a third for now. He's home sleeping because he was scared trying to hide out from those guys. Sounds like a movie plot. My car has a broken passenger window where one of the bad dudes swung a big bottle of liquor at Daniel's head from the outside and broke the window. sigh. tomorrow I'll probably have some new feelings rising now that I know he's safe. I'm glad to have found you even if it is quiet. I'm a social worker so I know the drill but am really stupid about my own self and kid right now. :-)
Helen
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1530493 tn?1410060236
Hi Helen...Glad you found Dan & hes safe
The thoughts that can run through our minds. ..our worst enemy huh ?
yes it's amazing how fear will turn to anger then back to fear. ..big part of the emotional Rollercoaster ride they take us on
A social worker feeling stupid, not at all. ...your just too emotionally attached.
When it comes to our own kids,  the advice we give others, often needs to be given back to us :)
I hope Dan finds a solution,  as he is putting himself in unsafe places.
My son is a 3 year recovering heroin addict.  The stories he's since told me about situations he was in during his active years drains my color I'm sure.  I still wonder how he survived.  If his addiction didn't take him... the positions he put himself in for his addiction should have.
Towards the end of my son's active years I believed ZERO of what he said.   The members here gave me a great education  quick,  they told me step by step what his next move would be...they were right.  
As I said before...heroin addiction doesn't just go away.  
He was high and admitted to smoking weed,  that to me is a red flag.  
I don't know how to say this in a gentle way. ..addictive behavior, getting high in any way will keep him active, if he's not doing heroin now...more likely than not he will go back to it.
does he show any interest in getting clean with professional  help...rehabs, meetings ?
Eyes wide open. ..ok
here for you
deb
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I understand what you are feeling. My daughter, my beautiful, intelligent, funny, loving, talented daughter started using heroin at 19. I dont know why. She went through all of the education, the DARE program, me telling her not to take that path, yet, she did. She had broken up with her long time boyfriend, he had slept with someone else. She was heartbroken, she tried heroin. She has told me over and over it isnt my fault. Still. I feel it is somehow. I failed her somehow. This is not the life God intended for her, her sisters and brother, her father, or me. I blame myself because we divorced when she was young. I am trying to accept that it isnt my fault. Everything inside of me wants to take this from her, to overcome it myself for her, to kill this wicked thing that stole my child. It hurts so bad. I have tried everything, rehabs, money, support, patience, no contact, no help, ... she is 31 now. Three years ago she became pregnant and her baby girl, my only grandchild, was taken away from her. I live out of state so I legally couldnt even take my grandchild to raise. I feel so ashamed. This wasnt how life was suppose to work out. This is all wrong. Now my daughter is so depressed over losing her child. There is nothing I can do except to tell her to get her life together so that one day she will be the woman her daughter deserves to find out is her mother. She doesnt live anywhere. She accepts homelessness and begging for money in parking lots as the life she deserves. I feel ashamed that my daughter is out there, homeless. She lies to me about her sobriety. I can always tell bc she sniffs while shes talking on the phone. I pay for her to have a cell phone-its my only lifeline to her-even though she rarely picks up the phone when I call. I think about shutting it off, but then I would have no way of knowing...if she is alive. Allowing myself to say all of this, to write it, is excruciatingly painful. I have to keep a wall up emotionally, otherwise, I couldnt function, I couldnt work, or be there for my other 3 grown children. They are angry at her. So angry, fed up. I know she is sick and needs help. But what help can I give is she is unwilling. I literally drove out of state 4 years ago, went to the town I knew she was in- I hadnt heard from her in a month. I was so afraid she was dead or suffering and needed help. I posted reward signs all over with her picture on them. I stayed in a hotel for a week driving around every day, talking to people, other addicts. I brought subutex with me, so that she could detox in the hotel if I found her. I prayed and prayed. Finally a guy called me, he was a heroin addict too. He wanted the reward money. He told me where she would be walking and when to be there. Sure enough, there she was. She came around the corner and looked at me and said "Mom"? she started to cry but she was surprised and happy too...and high. I said I am here to take you out of here honey. Just get in the car. I have everything we need. I am taking you back home, after you detox you are going into a rehab. She got in the car, she detoxed over the next few days in the hotel, she did go to rehab, within days of getting out she relapsed again. She went back to that town. The guy I paid the reward to, maybe he was barely 21 years old- he ended up dying from an overdose. She knew him. His death didnt make her stop. Shes seen so much of that, but it doesnt stop the addiction from ruling her. So many times I have thought about kidnapping her, taking her to the mountains, to a little cabin so deep and so far from the city she couldnt escape, I would nurture her there, heal her, Mind, body and soul. I would stay there with her for as long as it took to get her back again, my precious angel with such a brilliant mind, the happy loving soul I gave birth to. She is lost in a maze of darkness, I cant reach her to help her. I am a prisoner of this heroin too yes I am. It has taken my child, and built a wall between us, it is a clear wall, I can see her suffering but am unable to break through, I have exhausted myself trying, all I can do is wait for her to wake up from the spell she is under, to realize the wall can only be broken through from her side. All of my love, all of my pain, it doesnt matter. She must feel love, for herself, forgiveness for herself, love for life enough to say enough. What is the purpose of this drug, this addiction, this life spent in it? It is dark and evil, little by little taking our children, our friends, life as we knew it, The destroyer. I asked what it felt like, they say it is a blissful, painless feeling. I think of meditation and can describe the same feelings. But the drug, it destroys all esteem, all sense of purpose, all honesty, all liberty, all of the self...too many burnt bridges, too far to come back to this reality I suppose. I still pray and I still have faith. I go back to my numbness about it in order to live, feeling guilty for living or any joy felt because she is out there somewhere begging for a buck to feed the monster inside of her.
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1530493 tn?1410060236
Your post just broke my heart.  Kim hasn't been here for awhile and may not respond.
I'm sending you a friend request and a private message, If you'd like to talk
It's a horrible road. .you need support
deb
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My 33 year old son just died of an apparent heroin overdose (pending toxicology).  He was in rehab three times, 17 days, 21 days and 31 days.  After the last stint I really thought he was on the right track.  He had made significant shifts in his thinking, had a plan and was acting on it.  He was in a "sober" halfway house with plans to stay there until he felt he could transition to independent living.  He was receiving outpatient therapy.  He declined methadone and ambien offered by rehab. From what I have learned from those in the house, another client provided him with a bag of heroin.  He became unresponsive, and instead of calling 911, they dragged him back to his room and left him there.  He leaves behind four children age 2 to 9.  
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1530493 tn?1410060236
Lenny,
Stories like yours are so hard to read....heartbreaking.
Everyone of us here, know that fear.
The Evils of Heroin....are life long
There are no words,  but please know. ..one parent to another my sincere condolences are sent to you and your family.
I pray you find comfort and peace. ..I'm so sorry
were here if you need us....
Debbie
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Hi Deb,
My place when I need the support. It has been 3 years of my son using and I just can't take it any longer.
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1530493 tn?1410060236
Awe sweetie...I'm here whenever you need me.
message me..tell me where things stand. .let's talk ok.
we're going to work on you
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Hi Deb,
Im at work and trying to keep my self calm. I hate this life I wish I was strong enough and let everything go. My Son is under a Dr. Supervision but I know he is doing cocaine. His attitude up and down I know what I need to do I'm just mot strong enough. I want to  enjoy my girls and especially my husband t he is the love of my life. Truly blessed to have him. The anxiety that I have  from the morning that I wake up,till the night that I go to bed. Is killing me. I always wonder if I detached from son things will get better. I jus can't keep,on going this way. He has put him self in dangerous situations, like been assaulted at gun point by the same people that had sold the dope. Crazy! And not even with that gets scare.  I just pray that God gives me the strenght to keep,on going.
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Hi Deb,
Im at work and trying to keep my self calm. I hate this life I wish I was strong enough and let everything go. My Son is under a Dr. Supervision but I know he is doing cocaine. His attitude up and down I know what I need to do I'm just mot strong enough. I want to  enjoy my girls and especially my husband t he is the love of my life. Truly blessed to have him. The anxiety that I have  from the morning that I wake up,till the night that I go to bed. Is killing me. I always wonder if I detached from son things will get better. I jus can't keep,on going this way. He has put him self in dangerous situations, like been assaulted at gun point by the same people that had sold the dope. Crazy! And not even with that gets scare.  I just pray that God gives me the strenght to keep,on going.
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1530493 tn?1410060236
I'm SO SORRY I didn't get back to you sooner.
Sweetie you've been fighting so hard for so long, you've given all you can, the rest is up to him.
we become addicted to our addicts, for our own emotional well being, we need to learn how to seperate ourselves from their addiction, and yes that's what your doing by detaching with love.  
Your not letting your son go....your letting his addiction go.
We need to learn ways to back away, it doesn't come natural,  you have to work hard at it, baby steps, it's our recovery....one day at a time.  
Sometimes minute by minute.

I had great support. ..you need that too.
Where ever your comfortable, if it's here, meetings someone you completely trust, or a combination of all.  
Always get it out even if its only tears and no words.
When you go home to life let it be as close to normal as possible.
it helps separate your life from your son's addiction.

My first thoughts when I was in your spot were,  I have others in my life that need me. When were totally consumed by something we cant change,  we give up so much that  others in our life deserve to have from us.  
You hit the nail on the head your girls and husband, they need YOU.
Addiction is selfish don't let it take the rest of your family away.
When you can change your approach / attitude towards his addiction and he sees you moving on with your life. ...many times,  they don't want to be left behind, and follow your lead.

Starting today. ..when your son comes to mind force your thoughts to one of your girls. ..your husband.   Over time you train your mind.
spend that money youve been spending on your son, trying to help him. ..on you.
When is the last time you had a "date" with your husband ?
A family night focused on your girls ?
Try it with NO talk of what's going on with your son.
when your feeling overwhelmed,  get out of your house.  
Go somewhere anywhere that once brought you a smile.
I needed people most times. ..a crowd,  other times I'd sit at the lake and just take in what we so often overlook....natural beauty.
Some days, My release was driving with no destination  ..music loud so I couldn't think.
I have a disabled daughter and 4 grandbabies...I threw myself into them.
I missed so many years with them,  how amazing it was to reconnect.
before I knew it I realized I was letting his addiction go.  
Soon I could look at his addiction for what it was. ...his.  
if I let my mind go to him, yes that gut heartwrecking  pain resurfaced, I learned to "trick" My mind
I couldn't change him, but I changed myself.
by doing that I found a different strength. I knew we were not good together,  I knew I needed to heal separate from him, as together we were going down hard.
Once I moved on, so did he.
I had to let him go several times over the years...3 to be exact, but each time we separated, he gave recovery another chance.
each recovery longer in duration than the time before, with a shorter relapse between.
the first 6 months, 2nd just over a year, his 3rd over 3 years and counting.
I've come to terms with myself,  my son will always be an  addict, I pray in recovery, but also prepared things could change overnight, only he owns it.

You have to do this for you now...ok.

A great help to me was being taught addiction from the addicts side. While my son was active everything was down played by him ...LIES... so he could stay active.
he too was shot at, also held the gun in his hand, many ods. Watched friends die.  Died on the bathroom floor,  from shooting a fentanyl patch, brought back  to life, only to shoot another the next day.
how does that not make them see ??
The drug more powerful than all of us.
my begging, my tears...he seeing me give up on life,  it couldn't change him. ..I was living his addiction with him.
when I backed away he was living it alone, that was his rock bottom...being alone.
when I struggled the most. ..when I needed answers,  it was a struggling addict that trusted me enough to be fully open and honest with me, when I understood addiction from that side. ..it all began to fit.

There is an amazing woman here "nighthawk" she has many years of recovery under her belt, from a very bad situation...I'm going to ask her to touch base with you.  When you can understand both sides,  you will begin to find some release of your pain, some peace.
Please know if your more comfortable talking through messages we can do that.  If you want to stay on this tread...we can do that.
if you'd like to start your own thread ( top of the page. ..post a question ) with a brief story, new people will see when ever you post and add to your support.
Ive been with you along time. ..I watch for you,  but in this long thread, posts often get overlooked.
the more support you have now the better and we're going  to do it in the most comfortable way for you.
Deb









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Yes I have on he is 31,been on herion 10 years a new girl friend.I've known for 4 maybe 5.he told me he was ready for help got him into a methadone clinic after almost 4 year's that weind him off.well thought all good.are you ready for this.found out my husband 64 years married 33 years is now a herion addic I had had him in rehab twice I thought vicodin (we are blind) well third time he missed his vein and infection was on way to heart .so now I have son both on herion.both hep c.besides he is in very poor health and he doest take his Mexican.we have lost everything selling our property.and in his head its not cause of dope he is clueless.my sons daughter was born with hep c waiting on test for two youngest they have to have every 6 months his second is a herion baby I rocked walked a baby going Thur withdraws is so bad the youngest mom was in jail or rehab the whole pregnancy and was back in jail the week after baby born she is 2 1/2 found great I have had her her dad has lived with us to I could tell yavso much it is awful drug I hate it and the kids are who suffer. I have a grandaughters who is now 11 when she was 7 she lost her mom really shocked everyone that she was doing herion the damn **** everywhere they blame being on pain medican I think that's bull its a easy way out I know 99% that had never Used herion I'm sorry I'm rambling I have never had anyone was looking found page and found you there is so much more imvmoveing I have saved all the funerals we have gone to kids I countedover 20 and that's probably in 3 or 4 years kids under23 years I live in a small town but major city about 25 miles I m feeling defeated I said I will beat this monster that had invited my home.I feel like I don't know I'm ready to leave area leaving home I can't watch my husband and son leave they are already dead their sprit is gone I don't know who these people are
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I need help.  My son is 20 years old and he is on heroine and ice? I believe that the ice is method but I'm not sure on that.  It's tearing our family apart.  He has lost everything.  His kids,  his parents and siblings,  his job.  He's been through rehab twice.  I've been trying the past 2 days to go to detox for a few days and now he won't even answer my calls.  I just fear that phone call that he has od'd.
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1530493 tn?1410060236
Lilybitd...I'm so sorry your post was missed, I hope you check back .

Leah lane...you might want to start a new thread, where it says post a question, at the top right ( i think) of the page....that way we can keep track of you.  This thread is long and often missed.
first of all I'd like to say hi....2nd know there is hope.  
I know how distraught you are right now.
I too am a mom of an iv heroin addict.  
My son was in a very very bad spot, like the flip of a switch he changed his life, but it didn't come without tremendous pain first.  
He will be 4 years clean this year. ..words I NEVER expected to say, it does happen for many, so please keep faith.
there is no right or wrong when dealing with addiction.  We as parents seem to need to go through a process to bring ourselves to the place that we can help them instead of hurt them.
The first thing that needs to end is any kind of enabling.  We enable in ways were not aware of.
I use to ask myself if I do this for my son is it helping him or leading him in deeper, I soon realized the fact that I would question myself  meant it was something I shouldn't do for him.
it's a very long painful road, no one can make him stop. ..that can only come from him. But we can help lead them to their fall.
your life as you know it needs to change temporarily....we parents make their addiction our own...we try to fix them.
youll need to start looking at his addiction for what it is....his addiction, let him take full responsibility for his actions, and it isn't easy.  We almost need to go against our natural instinct to protect.
I did it all...gave it all and lost it all trying to save my son,  all I did for him was to allow his addiction to intensify.
when I could handle no more, when I was numb...I backed out of his life.
made sure he knew I loved him, made sure he knew when he wanted real help I was there for him, but also told him until that time came he was no longer welcome in my life as an addict.
as painful as it was, I stood my ground.
they will make us very sick, when I could change my life and he knew he was alone (I was the last to let go) he soon changed his.
I know your on an emotional rollercoaster, lost, scared, no where to turn.
only he can fix his life only you can change yours.
Start with you. ..MANY times they will follow us.
Like I mentioned above...start a new thread...I'll be watching for you,  this way others can jump in to give you support too.

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I am so sorry to hear of your story .  I hope my story will help give you hope .  I found out thanksgiving day that my son was shooting herion.  Of course I heard him lie and tell me the needles belong to his friends.   My son was 19 and attending college in flagstaff at this time when I found his stash.  At June we spent our family summer vacation in California , we are Az. .   At the beginning of June I decided to go thorough my sons bag and once again I find his drugs.   I decided to see what was available for help in California. I told my son to get in the car and I drove him to a facility for one week for detox , then a thirty day treatment facility .  Meanwhile I knew I had to do my research in ordered for the best outcome .  I was introduced to a man named shean O hara.  My husband and myself set up an appt. to get information and ask about options. We were told there was a two year program in Torrance California for 17 -22 with drug addictions.  It was called New Life House.  We had our son talk to mr O Hara and our son committed to three months.  At this time the new life house said our son was one of the worse cases they've seen in 17 years.  My son knew if he continued on his path that death was enviable .  The house had to meet our son first to see if he would qualify as a candidate  and he did.  We left him there knowing he would never live with us ever again and his new life of sobriety would be in the Torrance area.   The house where my son stayed with 27 other boys was the beginning of getting my son back.   I'm not going to get into details about the house.  However there are a total of three houses depending on ages up in your thirties.   We told our son this was our gift to him.   This was not a locked facility.  Our son knew we would not let him come home.   For the first year my husband and myself went to the weekend meetings, In which we learned a great deal.  This July 14th. We will be returning to the New Life house to celebrate our sons  4th year of sobriety.  He lives two miles from the house.   His best friend are graduates from the houses and his roommates are graduates as well.   At two years they move them out in threes to begin their life outside the house but also continue to go to meetings at the house for 6 months.  My son is 23 years old and he is going to college.  He just got certified to become an EMT.  He is happier and loving his life in sobriety.  Of course he misses living in Arizona and being closer us.  His success depends on living in a sober community and giving back to the house ,  he knows this.  Herion is incredibly hard to battle.  You cannot do it alone.   We were so blessed to find this house which has a 78% success rate.  It did cost us to send him there but we chose the house over college tuition.   They do have them working at 7months and contributing to their stay.  They also are under a daily ritualistic  order of living .   They all do chores , cook ,  meditate ,  go to AA meetings 4 days a week and they also go to movies and dances to learn what it's like to have fun in sobriety.  I feel truly blessed .  I hope my story will inspire other parents that your hopes and prayers can be answered.  Never give up.  My son knew he could choose life or the streets.   That's when we as parents have to use tough love.  My prayers go out to all parents suffering from this disease that our children face.  Blessings to you all!
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