Advice for rehab

Discussion in 'Substance Abuse' started by toughlovin, Oct 10, 2010.

  1. toughlovin

    toughlovin Guest

    Hi all,

    I am starting to look into options for my son for his substance abuse issues. I am not sure yet whether or not he is willing to consider it, but given that right now he is in jail he might be willing to look at this.

    So I am looking for any tips or advice on good places to look and check places out. I know we can't talk about specific places on the board but if anyone has good suggestions and want to send them me privately that would be good.

    I would ideally like a place that is geared towards young adults. He is almost 19 and I would like him to neither be the youngest or the oldest Definitely not the oldest.

    Thanks for any ideas you can giv me.
  2. Nancy

    Nancy Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Substance abuse rehab centers are filled with mostly young people now. I was afraid my difficult child would be the youngest there at age 19 and I was shocked to find probably 75% of the residents were 18-25, with most being 18-21. The counselors explained that what we use to think about rehab centers being filled with middle age men or women does not apply now. Drugs are the main thing that puts people in rehab and the majority of middle/older people who abuse substances do not go to rehab. It's the younger people who are either sent there by their parents or employer or ordered through the court system. There were a few people in their 30's and one two in their 40's when difficult child was there but they were all there because of their employer.

    I don't know where you live but I would definitely recommend the one we used. A couple suggestions I have is to do a lot of research on the treatment center and find out what thier daily schedule is. You want something that is very structured with not a lot of down time. Also make sure they do not allow cell phones or any other electronic devices. Treatment is not effective if they have contact with the outside world via texts/cell calls/facebook etc. The last thing you need is for him to be in contact with his druggie friends. Also make sure they have a family program as part of their treatment since the family is very much affected. I thought I knew everything I needed to know about alcoholism and boy was I mistaken. The family program on Sundays was so benefical and gave us a chance to interact with our difficult child in an honest and open manner in the safety of a therapeutic setting. I don't think her treatment would have been half as beneficial without it. It was a big commitment but one that was well worth it.

    From what I have observed the length of treatment is usually 30-90 days with 60 days as the average. I suggest finding one whose treatment plan progresses in stages with detox being the initial phase, then progressing into the regular unit, with an extended stay phase towards the end. In difficult child's treatment center they went to the wing or extended stay house on property after 30 days. They allowed off premises social outings one day a week and short passes to leave the property and a home day pass the last week. Drug/alcohol tests were given upon return from any outing or pass. The residents in extended care were also permitted to attend AA meetings off premises on certain days to acquaint them with the process for when they were released.

    It would also be beneficial to make sure the rehab center had halfway houses that could be used at the end of treatment if the person was not ready to return home. And most of all, there should be intensive outpatient program as part of the treatment once the person returns home.

    I would check into your insurance now to determine what benefits you have. In all honesty the level of treatment a person gets is usually determined by the amount of insurance you have. We saw many people have to leave treatment before they were ready because benefits ran out. We have a very high deductible and very few inpatient mental health days so our insurance ended up paying $3,000 and we had to pay the rest. Many families took out loans to pay for treatment. Most rehab centers charge less after the initial 30 day stay.

    Our rehab used the 12 step program with heavy emphasis on group and individual therapy sessions. These sessions were most beneficial. Any problems that came up during the day with residents were usually handled by the residents themselves in group.

    While the male and female patients were kept separate in the living quarters they were together for meetings and meals and free time. I wish that they were kept separate in free time since there were several problems that came up because of this.

    I would ask what percentage of patients are court ordered as opposed to voluntary. We found most problems occurred with court ordered patients, however they were quickly kicked out if they did not follow the rules or were disruptive.

    Find out from your son's PO if you can make treatment part of his release. That way he will have no choice to attend. Although I seem to be taking out of both sides of my mouth here, if that's the only way you can get him in it's worth it.

    If I think of anything else I will let you know.


    P.S. Your son being almost 19 will be one of the youngest since most rehabs do not allow adolescents with adults, however as I said earlier most all of the residents were her age.
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2010
  3. PatriotsGirl

    PatriotsGirl Guest

    My difficult child refuses to go and rehabs will not take her unless she is there willingly. She is only 17, I don't know why I am not allowed to force her into treatment. Try to get your kid help and no one helps. It is the most aggravating situation on the planet!!!! Obviously, I don't have any advice but wish you luck in getting your child help!
  4. Nancy

    Nancy Well-Known Member Staff Member

    PatriotsGirl you have more power than you think if you are willing to push it. We drew the line in the sand that she had to go to rehab or she couldn't live with us anymore. We had to be prepared that she would choose to leave and we were because if she stayed and didn't go into rehab she would end up dead anyway. Once she got into rehab we continued using that to make sure she stayed until the rehab center thought she was ready to go and they stood behind us.

  5. PatriotsGirl

    PatriotsGirl Guest

    Nancy, we kind of did do that. Though legally we are not supposed to kick her out until 18. She is 17. But I told her that was the deal before I picked her up on Thursday and she agreed but then didn't want to be there and got discharged yesterday. When I picked her up I told her she made a choice by not getting the help so she was going to my mother's where I know she will be safe and away from all of the ****. I have a friend that runs a program up there and is willing to take her if she is willing to go. I am hoping she will make the choice to go but either way, I am not worrying if she is dead some where or using. I know she is surrounded by love and family and she is glad to be away from the life she was living. Things are hopeful.
  6. toughlovin

    toughlovin Guest

    Boy figuring out treatment optionsn is is hard Occupational Therapist (OT) sort out the different places and what to do. It is a bit overwhelming.

    We had a very very tough conversation with our son last night. We basically old him we would not help pay for an apartment and he can not come home. He was very upset by this, I think he was counting on coming home. So he feels he has no option. We told him he cannot come home unless he has treatment. At this point he does not really admit to a drug problem, in his mind he just smokes weed, but what he does know is he does not like jail at all. So that is at least a good step. I felt bad after the conversation. Sad for him, it is hard leaving him with no real options and yet i also know it is the only thing we can do right now. He cant come home until he has done some real serious work on himself. It is not good for us and it is not good for our daughter and in the end letting him come home and do the same old thing is not good for him. But it is hard to keep all that in mind when you are talking to him and he so obviously feels trapped... which in reality he is and he did it to himself.
  7. Nancy

    Nancy Well-Known Member Staff Member

    toughlove, was he drinking too? My difficult child only smoked pot too and drank. We were under the mistaken impression that the pot smoking was sporadic and we had no idea she was drinking as much as she was if at all. I mean we knew occassionally she drank some beer but we had no idea to the extent. A drug is a drug is a drug. When they go to rehab they have to quit drug and alochol, no matter what their drug of choice is. Those who came in for heroin are surprised to find out they can never drink again.

    I'm sure that was a very hard discussion to have with him. I still remember the day we told difficult child that unless she went for treatment she had to pack her bag and leave that day. She was hung over and felt horrible so maybe that was incentive to go to treatment. She told us after that she was relieved we sent her for treatment because she knew she needed it but couldn't do it on her own.

    PatriotsGirl I think that's a good plan for now.