And she got caught with pot.

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by accmama, Oct 11, 2013.

  1. accmama

    accmama Guest

    So, I just found out that my 19 year old difficult child was cited for marijuana possession 2 weeks ago and now has to go to court. I looked up the state laws in PA and found that small amounts are punishable with 30 days in jail and a $500 fine. If I understood corrrectly, the judge could waive jail time in favor of probation.

    Now I'm wondering if maybe this was a good thing. Right now she's sleeping on a friends couch and has no official residence (in my opinion she's homeless). Perhaps if she is working with a PO, they can help her get some help or at least advise her on what to do to improve her situation. Or if she does go to jail for 30 days, maybe there is a counselor there who can get her on the right track?

    I know, I know....none of my thoughts are probably realistic, but in my perfect world, people with problems (i.e. those who end up in jail or use drugs) will be helped instead of punished...especially when they have no family support because they've burned those bridges.

    Any thoughts?
  2. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    My daughter was busted twice for pot, although she was doing much more dangerous drugs too (never got caught for them). She was just given probation and it didn't change her behavior one bit. Maybe, because your daughter is older, she'll get some jail time and some serious help. But if she doesn't want the help, if it's offered, she isn't going to get seriously clean.

    The terrible part of being the parent of an adult child is that we can't save them anymore. They have to decide to change in order to change. My daughter snowed several counselors. It wasn't until SHE decided to stop using drugs that it happened and, in her case, she did it on her own. But it had to be HER time, HER way, HER decision.

    I'm so sorry you are going through this. Try to focus on yourself now and taking good care of YOU. You can not help your daughter at her age. And only she can decide to change and do it. Detachment is a really good skill to learn.

    Hugs and keep us posted.
  3. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    My experience and understanding about jail time is that yes, she might get lucky and receive some kind of education and/or care..........but she just as easily, may not. Idealistically I would hope that people with problems would be helped rather the punished, however, I don't realistically think you can count on that.

    However it turns out for your daughter will be the consequence of her behavior. That alone could possibly change her, but then again it might not. If you've read posts here you likely see that these scenarios get played out in so many different ways..........Of course I hope for the best for your daughter, but the best thing you can do now is to really take good care of yourself.

    When the dust all settles you'll be able to access the situation and at that point determine how much if any support you want to offer your difficult child. In the meantime, it appears she has found a place to live, has denied the deal to stay at your place as long as she is drug tested and is not involving you in her latest adventure. In the difficult child world, sometimes that's as good as it gets for awhile................. and during that time, in my opinion, it's best to go live your life and find your joy..............Hang in there, you'll find out soon enough what the next chapter will be in your daughter's latest drama. Keep posting. Sending you warm wishes for peace.........
  4. accmama

    accmama Guest

    Thanks for the encouragement. THIS IS SO FLIPPING HARD. I just want to scream. Part of the reason it is so hard is because I worry for her future because I love her and want good things for her, but selfishly the other part is that if she does end up in a really bad situation, it will be harder for me to not get involved and help her. I mean, she's so young and stupid. She has always been oppositional and very defiant and took the attitude that I am just an idiot and so she never would let me teach her about real life- paying bills, budgeting, managing a checking account, upkeep for her car. It's like I just tossed a 12 year old out on the street (at least that is how it feels) so I partly feel responsible for her being completely unprepared for real life and if they take her license away and she can't get to/from work, then what?

    If you pray, pray for me today. I'm having a very hard time. I know I need to detach, but it's not an easy thing.
  5. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I will certainly pray for you and your daughter Mamakathy, prayer helps and here on this board, I think we ALL need prayers. Every 30 days I call a prayer line for my daughter..........every day I pray for her..........and many of the mothers, fathers and children on this board too.

    Everything you said is exactly how I feel too. I imagine your fears are universal in the difficult child world. Most of our kids are ill equipped for the real world, whether we taught them how to do it or not. I believe over time we all have to ditch that guilt, because it becomes painfully obvious, even to us, that it isn't our fault, it is the different wiring our kids have.

    Of course you worry........we all worry here..........most of it turns out to be worry about stuff we have absolutely NO control over. For me that got so bad it really had the capacity to ruin my life and keep me from being present for my granddaughter whom I am raising. I made a choice to put all my efforts into changing what I had control over, ME. It took time but with A LOT of professional help and support and tools and more understanding of the dynamics of enabling and detachment, I made it out of that fearful, guilty, stuck place. To say it was the hardest thing I ever have done is an understatement of epic proportions. So, I get the "this is so flipping hard I want to scream." I would venture to guess that there are many here who would second that thought.

    This is where you take steps to detach. One day at a time. You make different choices in your responses to your daughter. You take another baby step. It doesn't happen overnight and it isn't a process that makes sense or is linear............because of love, of our parental dreams and disillusions, we are compelled to turn over all the rocks.........and I think we must so at whatever point it is that we do reach that acceptance that comes with detachment, we really can let go.

    Your daughter may wake up and this will all be a moot point. However, if she remains the way she is, you retrieving your own life and your own joy and your own peace of mind is the only path to take that doesn't promote more suffering.

    For today, take a small step to do something kind for yourself. Go have your nails done, a pedicure, go for a long walk in the woods, have lunch with a girlfriend.............and equally as important find a serious support system for yourself, whether that is therapy, a 12 step group, a parent support group, some place where you will get the support you need to walk through this, get comforted, get the tools you'll need to walk on through and come out the other can do this...........keep posting, nurture yourself, get support. Sending you hugs and wishes for peace.
  6. Tiredof33

    Tiredof33 Active Member

    I struggled with the guilt too. My difficult child's home life was not the best and my difficult child started using and acting out at an early age. The best thing you can do for both of you is get over the guilt. My difficult child started using it to manipulate me and it worked!

    Regardless of the past, you can't change it. Life is not perfect and we can not control it. I know plenty of people that had what I would consider an extremely good childhood and are major difficult children, also people that had crummy childhoods that are responsible adults. If we knew the magic answer to what makes them difficult children ...................................

    The stress from dealing with the drama of a difficult child can be unbearable. The only thing you can control is your behavior so take care of you. Find a hobby you enjoy, anything that can help you to take your mind off difficult child for a while. I let mine affect my health before I finally said I just can't do this any more.

    There are some great books available to help with enabling, setting boundaries, and counseling does help. It's hard, learning to detach has helped me tremendously. No parent should have to live through this, but we are. I have not given up on my son, but I do not hold my breath waiting for him to turn his life around. Maybe one day!

    I wish you peace and you have my prayers for you and yours.
  7. accmama

    accmama Guest

    Thanks so much. I do have decent days when I can detach, stick with tough love, etc. Just not today.

    As far as the guilt goes, I do know it isn't all my fault that she is ill equipped. I tried. She just told me to eff off every time I asked her to sit down with me to learn a life skill. Of course, when the **** hits the fan, she'll blame me, but I did try very hard. I even tried to enlist the help of teachers and counselors, thinking she needed to learn these skills and if she wouldn't let me talk to her maybe she could take a class or find an adult mentor, but her entire life was spent begin defiant.

    I like your idea of calling a prayer line every 30 days. And finding a support group. As soon as our schedules lighten, I think I'll do that.
  8. tryagain

    tryagain Active Member

    Hey-hugs to you. I just said a prayer for you, me, everobe here, and all of our difficult children. My difficult child daughter is in lying mode right now and I busted her. Her reaction is like that of a cornered animal; she lashes out angrily completely ignoring the facts which prove she's lying. The restaurant where she claimed to be working "closed", according to her. yet I googled and it was featured on TV yesterday! When provided this information today, she said that I am the stupid one! So frustrating. She lives several hours away, thank goodness, or I would be fearful she might come in the night and try to harm me. (She's threatened me with knives, broken down my bedroom door to get to me, etc.) i fear she's in a manic swing because she had seemed fairly stable; now I know it was a house of cards and once again, she had created her own reality. When will I learn not to believe anything she says?
  9. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Many of us know that pot is not harmless. It is not even pure anymore and it zaps your motivation and, at least among the parents here, tends to lead to other things. You sound very young, but it is not helpful to tell us that pot isn't harmful even if you feel it was not to you.

    Most of the adult children here have engaged in criminal behavior, abuse toward us, and have stolen, etc...this is not a forum where we get upset just because our grown child is smoking pot once in a while. Read some of the stories and then respond.

    Some people react very badly to pot. I was one. It is not "safe" for everyone. And alcohol is an issue for many of our children too. We are not ignorant. We know alcohol can be dangerous. Most of our kids are in trouble in many areas and we are learning how to detach from them.

    by the way, some of us don't use any substances when we are stressed, even very stressed. But that's just an aside :)