Feeling a bit antsy

Discussion in 'Substance Abuse' started by toughlovin, Mar 3, 2012.

  1. toughlovin

    toughlovin Guest

    Hi all,

    So I had a very very vivid dream about difficult child last night.... it was all about getting at the bottom of what drives his addiction. In my dream it somehow came out he was abused by some camp counselor when he was young... and in my dream I was there while he confrotned the counselor. I have absolutely no idea if any such thing happened, but my gut tells me that he experienced some trauma some where so I think my brain is searching for answers.

    Anyway I woke up thinking about him, loving him and wanting so so much for him to figure stuff out so that he can really find his way to recovery.

    I think I am feeling anxious after the talk with the therapist yesterday....I just wish he was really working hard towards recovery and I am getting the feeling he may just feel it is hopeless. I dont know.

    So I am just in this strange frame of mind today.....

  2. exhausted

    exhausted Active Member

    I think it can be difficult for some kids to really even know what is making them feel the way they do. I have heard that even trauma suffered by mothers while the baby is in utero can affect kids. When I went to Bosnia, they were just completing a study of babies born post war to moms who had been through the war. They were having a high incidence of kids with attention issues and mental health problems.

    It is good that you like this counselor and I also think it may take some time. Sometimes our kids don't even make the link from their issues to drug use. Even though my daughter knows her core issues inside and out and has talked about them, processed them and tried to deal with them, she sometimes denies that she uses pot to numb her feelings. That frontal cortex is just not developed enough.

    I hope he will stay there and begin working the program. You have to get some good rest and have dreams of some good things as well!
  3. Nancy

    Nancy Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I've been there TL so I know how you are feeling. I still remember visitng difficult child on one saturday when she was in rehab and she was acting funny and my antenna was up. I took the opportunity to look in her notebook when she left the room and found some alarming drawings and notes. She caught me looking and we had words and she left the room and went outside to sit with her "friends" other rehabbers who were not serious about recovery. It all pointed out to me that she may not be drinking but she sure wasn't working on herself or the program and wasn't serious. I left there with a very heavy heart and pit in my stomach.

    All you can do is trust the process. It sounds like he has a very good therapist and they are use to reluctant clients. In the meantime try to think about something else, I know easier said than done. You are like me, you want to know the end result now. Things can change, he can finally get it one day, each day he is there is one more day for the miracle to happen.

  4. Signorina

    Signorina Guest

    Last night, I was surfing my "bookmarks" while waiting for pc17 to get home. I was reading a sticky post on sober recovery-it was a list of 10 steps. One of them immediately came to mind when I read your post: "The paralysis by analysis"

    "4) Don't analyze the loved one's drinking or drug use. Don't try to figure it out or look for underlying causes.
    There are no underlying causes. Addiction is a disease. Looking for underlying causes is a waste of time and energy and usually ends up with some type of blame focused on the family or others . This 'paralysis by analysis' is a common manipulation by the disease of addiction which distracts everyone from the important issue of the illness itself."

    I know how hard it is for you to be far away from and out of touch w your son. I'm struggling with that all the time. Detaching from my son is the most unnatural thing for this mom to do. So, as I detach physically & outwardly-my inner dialogue (and my phone talks w my mom) are still very attached and difficult child centered. And since I can't ask my difficult child the big questions, I ask myself, and I go 'round and round with-answers. And let's face it-there are only 2 questions:

    (subset of #2 is how do I get you to stop)

    In the past 2 months, you were reeling from crisis to crisis w your difficult child. He was in constant text communication. You were putting out his fires and toeing the detachment/tough love line carefully. There was always something you could do (or not do to) to try to influence him towards bottom/help. I admired your strength & the tough choices you made. In fact-at times- I was envious that your son reached out to you. You succeeded! Now he has the tool (rehab) and the distance and his recovery is in his hands.

    Your post reminded me of that quote from Norma Borland that was my rock in my first months "Every day I wake up desperate to do something, and then I realize there is nothing I can do."

    You hold my hand and I will hold yours. Let's remind each other that detaching can't just be on the surface. We didn't cause it, can't control it, can't cure it. It is what it is. The "why" doesn't matter.

  5. Calamity Jane

    Calamity Jane Well-Known Member

    I'm thinking about what TL wrote, and what Signorina wrote, and I'm just wondering about the process in rehab, because I really don't know. Does rehab enncourage you to analyze WHY you use, or do they just get to the business of abstinence? Because it would be natural, I think, for the person to try to figure it out, and work on why perhaps they keep pushing their feelings down, and numb them thru SA.
    Also, TL, your uneasiness coming thru dreams, makes perfect sense. It seems like we internalize what they're going through.
  6. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    I think most of us have analyzed to find the root problem. In our case I know when and why then easy child/difficult child got off the track and headed down the s.a. road. Some of us attribute the dive into addiction to early childhood trauma, or abuse exposure or mental health root issues. But finding, or thinking we found, triggering factors does not solve the problem nor does it lead to recovery for our difficult children, in my humble opinion. It is what it is. Our difficult children have chosen to follow an addiction course. We can not get into their heads or their bodies to change that course. Somehow, someway they have to make difficult choices to make their lives healthier. I would literally give up my life if it would guarantee healthful living for my addict. That is not an option. Detaching as much as possible to regain some quality of life for myself and the rest of the family is the best I can do. One baby step at a time. It's still hard! DDD
  7. shannonontheprairie

    shannonontheprairie New Member

    My own counsellor firmly believes that we work though our issues in our dreams, and I believe that. It is very, very natural for you to do so. I recently suffered a traumatic (final and conclusive) separation from my mother, and certainly working through my emotional recovery in my dreams, on occasion.

    I have difficulty believing that the causes of our children choose to walk down the path of drug and alcohol usage have nothing to do with their recovery. Is it those who suffer some sort of trauma or mental disorder that end up being caught the worst in the web of addiction? Or it is solely triggered by overuse?
    I don't know, but it seems to be some of both. I also (want to) believe that the earlier root causes are discovered (in the case of trauma) the better chance a kid has of getting the emotional support and counselling needed to kick their dependence on substances for the relief of their pain. That said, I fully understand that addiction is also a physical disease and that part of recovery is as important as the other.
  8. Signorina

    Signorina Guest

    I guess I didn't mean to imply that the "WHY?" isn't relevant.

    It is. And while I don't have any experience with recovery/rehab, I am certain that exploring it comes into play.

    But our difficult child's "WHY?" may not be for us to know. And even if we could get an answer, it's likely that it's an answer we may never have considered. Or that it's none of our beeswax. And I am not trying to be glib. I want to know why and it torments me sometimes. But that's why I try to remember "paralysis by analysis." The "Why" has to be part of his journey - it may not be meant to be a part of mine. And I may drive myself crazy wondering. So I need to detach.
  9. toughlovin

    toughlovin Guest

    Thank you all for the discussion.... you make some really good points... and Sig you make a good reminder about analysis is paralysis and this is his journey and his discovery. And I do not need to go back to figure out how i could have saved him when he was younger!!!!

    I do think at least with my difficult child that he uses drugs to numb his pain. I have said that to him and he has agreed so he can acknowlege that part... but he is very guarded about his inner feelings which is not how he was when he was young. I do think for him to go through recovery he needs to find healthier ways to deal with the pain and the shame he feels but i also think to do that he has to get what that pain is about... and that is where i think therapy is really important. I am hoping this therapist can break beyond his wall that he puts up.

    It is also true I do not need to know what it is all about... that is his business. I do have some ideas and thoughts which I shared with the therapist and now they have to go from here.... and I need to let it go. You are right this is not really part of my recovery.

  10. shannonontheprairie

    shannonontheprairie New Member

    I think those are excellent points, especially to those of us who are brand-new to the world of addiction.
  11. AmericanGirl

    AmericanGirl Guest

    TL...sending you hugs and peace.

    I'm not certain any one event or reason creates addicts.
  12. Signorina

    Signorina Guest

    It's so hard. I don't claim to be any good at it. Maybe if I type it enough or read it enough-it will sink in.

    I think it's the epitome of what we are struggling against as mothers. It's a different type of struggle. Every bone in my body wants to scream " I did not give you permission to go on this journey and if you are determined to go on it - you are taking me with you. "

    It's like their first PG-13 movie - the one we hesitated about because might not be appropriate - so we sat in the back of the theater while they sat in front with their friends.

    The life they're leading, the knowledge that it's the right thing to detach- it goes against every grain of our motherhood. We spent 17 years & 364 days nurturing & protecting them & we're supposed to drop it on their sayso. ugh
    Lasted edited by : Mar 3, 2012
  13. exhausted

    exhausted Active Member

    Chimming back in-good discussion. I really think that in many cases maladaptive coping-such as drug use, is triggered by trauma and emotional distress. Some kids are just plain resilient and can weather stress and some trauma-good genetics in tow and just strong emotionally. Some kids have the gene that will cause addiction and some kids have mental health issues that are triggered by emotional pain. Some are more fragile than others. In all of my daughters very extensive treatment-the goal of therapy was to get to the root or core issues as they were called, and then to learn new ways of dealing with psychological stress and in her case, the reoccuring trauma. We were told that getting sober would not be possible if she didn't do this.

    I do think there comes a point when one must drive on. Going to the deap and dark places over and over cannot be good. I do agree that over-analysis of anything is worthless. But not finding a new way to frame your traumas or emotional distressors means they will haunt you.