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My situation

Aug 28, 2012 - 24 comments

Boy where do I start...?

I guess by saying I normally wouldn't disclose this info on this forum only because I use it mostly as a support for infertility issues. Problem is, it's all consuming and I really need to vent.

So as some of you know I have a son who is 23. Let me start by saying it was a really difficult pregnancy with him and an even more difficult childbirth lol... And that was the easy part. I was married a month after high school graduation and had him when I was only 18. His father was a MONSTER and we were finished when Troy was only one year old. Back in the day we couldn't rely on anyone but ourselves so I worked my azz off to support the two of us taking whatever job I could. Troy was always a difficult child, even getting kicked out of preschool at age 3. He really needed a full time mom but I was too busy working to be there for him 100% not to mention I was so young I made many mistakes. In elementary school he was always in trouble. Teachers couldn't handle his behavior and there were often meetings with teacher, principal and myself. Pretty daunting when you're a 24 yr old that looked 16 trying to defend an undefendable kid.
Around age six he called me from his fathers house while on a weekend visitation and was crying and terrified and hiding under the bed. I picked him up and called the police after I found out his father had turned his violent anger towards his poor defenseless son. I immediately put Troy in therapy and found out there were many instances of abuse I was unaware of. It was absolutely heartbreaking.  He stayed in therapy for three years going once a week and never had an unsupervised visit with his father again (court ordered!).

Things were better but he was always a difficult and 'different' child. After I remarried I sent him to the best private schools in our area. He excelled in academia and football. At age 16 he started showing signs of drug/alcohol experimentation. I found him getting into trouble outside of school and was very concerned. A month before he turned 17 (during Christmas no less) he went missing for three days and I was beyond terrified. Police were involved looking for him everywhere and I finally found him two towns over in a hotel hot tub partying. I sent him to rehab 5 days later. While in rehab he denied having any problems and the center agreed with me that he DID have a problem and wanted to keep him after the initial 28 days and extend it out to 90. I was in full agreement. His FATHER decided to check him out of rehab without my knowledge or consent! I was so flipped out that they released him to his father who had ZERO custody of him!!! I took him to court but by this time Troy was 17 and the courts felt he was basically an adult and let him decide where he wanted to go. This is when I lost him...

He slipped into many years of lying/manipulating and substance abuse. Our relationship was not good and he spent time going from my house back to his father's and back again.

Fast forward to now... He came to me this year and decided he needed to go into rehab and wanted our help. I can't tell you how happy this made me. He went in the first week of May (which is the month I got pregnant incidentally) and has been clean and sober for 4 months. It has been so great to have my son back all these months and had actually made the miscarriage easier for me to handle. It has been such a blessing.

Last night I woke up at 3am stricken with grief with a feeling in my bones that he relapsed... I couldn't sleep at all. I texted him around 5am saying I knew he had relapsed. No reply... I texted him at about 10am today telling him to call me when he was ready to talk about his relapse. Nothing. Finally, this evening he called and admitted he used last night. I am utterly gutted. I feel like all the trust he's established is gone. He says he is sorry and that he's sober today, talking to his sponsor yadayada but it's just words right now.

I saw this coming... Over the past couple of weeks his attitude has been changing and I told him I was worried he was heading for relapse. Thing is, he is saying things like, it could've been worse and that I should give him credit... it was 'just pot.' So his mindset is still in the dump. I don't think this is the end of his relapse... I think it's the beginning. He was kicked out of his Sober Living House (like a halfway house) which I have been paying 1/2 his rent. He was kicked out because he broke curfew too many times and didn't do chores, so yeah, it's back to old behaviors. He needs to find a new place by the first of September.

I told him I'd continue to pay if he found a new SLE male only (since he has sexual addiction issues too).

So anyways, that's my life right now lol. If you're still reading I apologize for rambling on and commend you for making it to the end.

Please keep me in your prayers for strength and to handle this correctly.

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by yoha919, Aug 28, 2012
oo my cher im sorry that your going through this i have no children and i cant give you advise as a mother but i am your son's age and all i can say as hard as it is let him hit his bottom because none would change unless you hit that bottom he knows your always going to be there and he will always have his mommy he will learn one day  he gets  off drugs i used to smoke weed too very heavy to dull the pain in my life but i decided to stop because i hit my bottom maybe theres a deeper issue with your son that hes not telling you maybe his father abuse and confusion....maybe hes been trying to get his fathers approval in some twisted way idk i can only assume your son is a very handsome guy and has a wonderful family meaning you! i hope things get better, i know is easy to say it then actually do it look at me now!!!!

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by Moma_Cher, Aug 28, 2012
Thanks Yohanny. He is been into all kinds of drugs from OxyContin to cocaine and everything in between.

Hope you're feeling better hunny. I've been thinking of you so much!!

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by Risa615, Aug 28, 2012
I hope you have a chance to go to counseling for yourself. It is hard loving an addict but we all have been there one way or another. Have you read, "Codependent No More"? Best book I will ever read about how to move forward with our feelings when our loved ones have issues. I hope things turn around for your son and that he wants to change for the better soon. Sending you prayers.
Marisa

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by Gabbi0312, Aug 28, 2012
aww cher i am sorrry you are going through this :(
i reallly hope he gets better soon... i hope he wants to change his life for the better, i hate any harddrugs or hard drug users, it scares me to death really since well... my brother did hard drugs around 16/17 & he passed away at 17, he'd be 23/24 now... it hurts alot... i sure hope he gets better, he needs to get his life turned around for the better!!!! :)

i mean i know i am not perfect-- i drink rarely & smoke pot but it helps with aniexty issues... but i am safe & responsible about it if that makes sense.


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by sisi2399, Aug 28, 2012
Oohhh God ..... You plate is full my friend.  Please know that you are doing the best you can and  all you can.  Have patience and faith that is really the only thing you can do right now.  Please know I have you and your family in my prayers.... Hugs!!!!

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by heather727, Aug 28, 2012
I'm sorry that you have all this going on on top of everything else you've had to deal with lately.  I know how frustrating it can be when a family member has addiction issues.  I can't imagine how I would feel if it were my son/daughter.  I know you must feel responsible in some way for his behavior.  But I truly believe that you did the best you could with him growing up.  At some point every person needs to start taking responsibility for their own actions and stop blaming everything on their parents.  He's at the point where he's an adult (at this age you were in meetings with his prinicipal and teachers trying to help him - all he has to do right now is take care of himself).  I'm not saying you should turn your back on him or stop supporting him, but I don't think you should feel guilty about his behavior.  It's HIS behavior, not yours.  Until he decides to make a change and stick to it, nothing is going to be different.  I'll pray that this relapse is isolated and he continues to stay sober.  Stay strong and know that you've got support here if you need it.

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by KTowne, Aug 28, 2012
I'm so sorry you're going through this, my father has went through a very, very bad drug addiction, and after many times going through rehab, it never worked, the last time he went he stayed sober for a while, but unless he changes his entire scenery, friends, lifestyle, it will all come back. He really has to want to do it on his own, so unfortunately, if this is the beginning of the relapse, and his attitude doesn't change, he's not going to want to get better, and he really, really needs to. Sometimes they need a very serious wake up call, and I still haven't found a good way to get that through. You sound like you've done all you can, and have done a great job of it, no matter how old you started motherhood!

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by FreshLove, Aug 28, 2012
I'm so sorry you are going through this. My dad is in his 40's and still addicted to pot, but considering when I was a baby he was doing meth amongst other drugs, we've just come to accept it (my parents got divorced when I was 3 so my mom raised me). I hope your son gets over his addictions soon and you both will be in my prayers.

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by beautifulmum, Aug 28, 2012
oh wow i am so sorry to hear my heart breaks for you i bet it is hard to watch your son go through this.
But to let you in on my life a little my oldest is almost 14 and her dad and i broke up about 5 yrs ago now hardest thing i have ever done. But her dad was very messed up he was convicted for touching a minor that was 15-16 and he has shown interested in girls between 14-17. So he is not allowed to see my girls unsupervised and in my books not at all. well in the last five yrs he hasnt bothered to see them as he was too busy sleeping with my best friend and had another child who he has let left her and moved on to some poor unfortunate soul
I feel your pain and fears as i worry my daugher could end up using something to numb her pain she is ok now and knows everything leading up to the end of my ex's relation ship demise with me. she seems understanding as to why i wont let them be together alone. I as a mom undersatnd this must be painful for you to watch.
sorry to hear you are going through this for sure...wishing you all the luck


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by retta483, Aug 28, 2012
Im sorry Cheri , I will keep you both in my prayers . That is a hard one my parents were both addicted to drugs and alchahol  .  they are both clean now  but they had to want it . Sadly my dad relapses from time to time he is a acholic and a diabetic  I feel like his mother sometimes . I know as a mom no one wants to see their child go threw this . praying for you  xoxo

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by Vency, Aug 28, 2012
Oh Cheri I felt your pain in every word and it brought tears to my eyes.  I am fortunate not to have anyone close to me with an addiction problem.  However, as a psychology major I learned about addictions and as Yohanny mentioned, you might have to let him bottom out before he really accepts that he needs ongoing help.  

There are obviously still problems related to his relationship with his dad and maybe even you that he hasn't fully dealt with, but he's also an adult and does need to take responsibility for his actions.  You've done the best for him and continue to support him, which is more than some people can say.

All I can do is pray for you and him that he is able to overcome his demons and find peace and for you to find peace in your heart about how you've raised him.  Just remember, it's not your fault!

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by Ginger077, Aug 28, 2012
I have had family  go thru this. It has to be the worst to have your own child doing these things. I'm glad he is willing to get help. The first step is admitting you have a problem.  He just needs the right treatment plan that's going to work for him. Like you said he needs one of the longer treatment plans for sure!!!!.  You name the drug/alcohol  and I've been around an abuser in our families that we have have to deal with. My first run in with this was with  my dad when I about 2 yrs old. I also watched him shoot himself checking on an intruder in the back yard and I thought he was going to die.  My husbands dealt with it too and his dad was kicked out after lifting him up off the floor by his neck when my husband was 6. Between both our families we gave so many types of drugs going on that we choose for the most part not to be part of the majority of the family anymore. My dad finally changed but my husbands died a couple Christmases before last.

In my opinion you are doing the right thing. He's your son and you love him. The only way to help him change is to back up the professionals. Im sure you know that.

I know you have been thru a lot with your pregnancy and son acting up but I truly am praying you have strength to get thru both of theses major obstacles. Im sure thats why you arent yourself yet. I'm here if you need to vent.
Sending hugs with my pigmy arms up north!!!
Ginger

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by Moma_Cher, Aug 28, 2012
Thanks you all for your support and for sharing personal stuff. Unfortunately addiction, like cancer touches too many of us in one way or another. It's particularly difficult when it's your child.

I'm working hard at doing the right thing and not giving in to codependent tendencies. It's really hard to find that balance when your role is parent. Granted he is an adult so that helps a lot. I've always been pretty good in this are but I must say, the longer this disease continues, the more it is wearing me down. I think I may seek some therapy or alanon meetings soon.

So today is a new day... I am hoping for the best but I realize it's out of my control. I have a family at home that needs me and so that is where I am trying to keep my focus.

Thanks again for all your responses. I AM TRULY TOUCHED by each and every one of your notes :))

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by nursegirl6572, Aug 28, 2012
While I don't "know" you...your journal popped up on my side bar.  I too, have had addiction touch my life.  A FEW of my loved ones had fallen victim to addiction, but like you said, when it's your CHILD, it's just so impossible.  You have an ingrained instinct to protect your child at ALL costs, but what does one do when the person they need protection from is themselves?  

I'm so sorry you are going through this, and I pray your son gets his head in the game...and starts taking recovery seriously.  Sounds like while he may have gotten clean, he didn't allow himself to really recover.  He didn't work at being clean, and staying clean.  Aftercare is so very important.  An addict can NEVER let their guard down.

Your son is right, it COULD have been worse, and I guess, to hold onto something small, that's a good thing...but you're right...it could be the start of a full blown relapse.  The choice of how it's going to end up is on HIM and HIM only.  He COULD easily use this as a wake up call, or he could use it as an excuse to relapse more.

My thoughts are with you...what an impossible situation to be in as a mother.  It's NO reflection on you at all.  You've been fighting for this young man since day one...now he has to fight for himself.  I pray he does.

XOXO



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by Moma_Cher, Aug 28, 2012
Thanks nursegirl :) your words are very I sight full and I welcome your post!!

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by Moma_Cher, Aug 28, 2012
*insightful*

Sheesh, my iPad thinks it's so smart! Plus I have chubby impatient fingers lol

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by melimeli, Aug 28, 2012
so hard.. don't let your guilt control your actions...  prayers for you and for your son...   it takes time to get sober and most don't do it the first try...

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by adgal, Aug 28, 2012
I'm so sorry you and your family are going through this.  Like so many I too know the pain of loving someone who has a problem with addiction.  None of this is your fault nor did you play any part in causing this.  I know you know that logically, but sometimes it can be a struggle to accept that emotionally.  He has to work through this on his own.  It's wonderful that he got clean and sober for a while, and Mel is right...so many don't make it the first time.  I know you won't give up on him, and he is so lucky to have you.

Have you ever considered Al Anon?  It is a wonderful program and the support there is amazing.  It seems just about everyone is touched by addiction and no one is to blame.  It's a vicious illness and so deeply affects everyone who loves the addict.  Sometimes I think it hurts them more then the person using.  Truly though, it sounds like he knows and accepts he has a problem, just this time the demon got the best of him.  He can and will fight back again, and eventually this can be beaten.

My heart hurts for you my friend.  Huge hugs to you and I hope he decides to seek help again quickly.  xoxo

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by Moma_Cher, Aug 29, 2012
Thanks Amanda. I am definitely considering finding al anon meetings in my area. Lord knows I can use the support. Today was better. He is looking for a new sober living house and seems to be in a better head space. All I know is it's going to be a long hard road!!


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by AnnieBrooke, Aug 29, 2012
I am with all the other ladies in sending you support.  However, I am troubled by your noncommittal approach ("I'm considering finding meetings ...") to Al Anon or getting some counseling.  Everything I know about addiction and how the families should behave for best results with an addict is about the family definitely cutting off the user and making a calm but definite end to their enabling.  Paying half of a 33-year-old's rent can be inadvertently enabling, even if it is at a halfway house.  (I can see how relieved you would be he was there, but can't you see how easy it made it for him to slip into his old rebellious ways?  It wasn't costing him much effort to be there.)  Please do go to Al Anon, or find a counselor who works with families who have to do drug interventions, and learn the chain of thought that leads to actually helping an addict versus the wishful-thinking chain of thought that people who love addicts often intuitively use.  You can use some more formal support.  

Good luck.

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by Moma_Cher, Aug 29, 2012
He's 23 annie but thanks for your input :)

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by AnnieBrooke, Aug 29, 2012
Sorry, I read the age at the beginning and didn't go back to check.  Good luck with your own road, is what I am saying ... after all the stress, you deserve the support that either counseling or AlAnon will give.  Don't be diffident about getting it, any more than you would like to hear your son say "I'm considering getting some drug treatment."  He's going through his own hell and travelling his own road, but you have your own road and need to do what you can to get comfort.  Best thing I ever did in life was hook up with a good therapist, I was able to talk with her about existential issues that I never could talk about to anyone else including my husband.  It is not a small thing to have that.  Please take care.

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by Moma_Cher, Aug 29, 2012
While I appreciate your concern, I have been to alanon groups and specialized one on one throughout the years not to mention family workshops... You name it.

I was just stating it's time for me to find a new group in this area that I now live in. I didn't write all my details down, just what I was feeling and needed to vent. There are some assumptions you made that are incorrect, although I'm sure it's coming from a place of good intentions.

Sometimes if we don't know all the details, maybe it would be more helpful to ask before giving advise based on what we assume or infer.

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by Godisfaithful, Nov 07, 2012
Just reading this post and have prayed for you all.

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