Arghhh.... sleepless nights etc.


Well-Known Member
Hi Everyone,

Honestly I want off this roller coaster ride... but unless I completely cut off any help or contact with my son I cant get off!!!

In a way i can understand drug use... I dont like it or approve of it but I can understand the need to escape feelings and the world by getting high.

I just dont get though why my difficult child always has to break the rules! Always. What does he get out of doing that? I have no idea and he doesnt seem to either.

So on Wed night I get a call that he has been kicked out of the holding program he was in. This is after a really good interview with this halfway house he was interested in! He was kicked out for having tobacco which is expressly against the rules.

So the good news is he called us. He wasnt sure what he was going to do run for it, or own up and call probation and take his chances on being put in jail. He was clean and said he was going to stay clean. So we talked and I think he listened.

I was so upset... and all those thoughts of him being again on the streets, homeless and dying were running through my head. I really dont want to go back to him being back on the streets and i envisioned once again many sleepless nights. I cant tell you how much I have enjoyed sleeping the last 6 months!

In the middle of the night he sent me a text with a picture of him being in a vehicle saying he ran..... so I got through the night but thought he had left the state... which kind of broke my heart because it has been good to have him back close to home and leaving the state means he probably would never come back because there would be warrants out for his arrest.

Then yesterday morning he got in touch and he was still in the area. The night before he had been in the city trying to find a place to sleep and there were cops around because there had been a bunch of sexual assaults in the area so they were checking everyone suspicious. So they talked to him, ran him (no warrants) and gave him a ride to a shelter! Phew.

ANd he had found a bed in a sober house... but he needed some money to get into it. So we met him yesterday afternoon and my husband took him to the shelter and paid the fee. So at least he is safe for now. And he agreed that today he will call probation. I am hoping that given that he has stayed clean and found himself a bed that they wont insist he go to jail (which wont help him).

So he keeps taking these giant steps backward and then recovering with good steps forward!

So today I am a little on edge wondering what will happen next but I was ablle to sleep last night.


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Well-Known Member
I have been pondering the whole what they get out of breaking the rules thing. Mine is locked up and still does not "get" that he is there because he broke the "rules" of his probation. If we could solve that mystery, you and I could make a fortune.

He did not run. Hold onto that positive. HE found a place on his own. That is HUGE. He is going to face probation on his own. HE is taking ownership of his choices. This is MAJOR.

My mother is in her 90's. Her youngest child is in her 50's. She was the difficult child growing up. She has been married to the sane man since she was 16. They have been very successful in business and in raising 3 responsible young adults. My mother to this day worries on a daily basis about my sisters every move.

Maybe it is a lifelong learned behavior, but I am going to do everything I can to unlearn it.


Well-Known Member
Ok Now I am on tenderhooks. His probation officer just called me. Another client told him Gabe had left and he wanted to know where difficult child was! I told him that he was in the city at a sober house and that he was clean. I also told him I would have difficult child call him right away. So I called difficult child and it went to voice mail. I called the manager at the sober house and left him a message. the PO told me he wanted to talk to difficult child before he put out a warrant.

I am just hoping that difficult child calls him asap and gets this resolved.

Eek.... honestly I am too old for this kind of worry and stress!!


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one day at a time
Oh TL, I am so sorry. I so understand the fear we have about their safety.

You know what you need to do. You read this site. You are so right---you are too old and too wise to keep on doing this.

Are you sick and tired enough to work to stop being so involved? Sadly, he is now an adult and the world will dole out the consequences of his decisions. One day, maybe, he will learn that his way isn't working. He has a chance to learn that more quickly if you and I stay out of our difficult children' way.

Warm hugs for your heart.

P.S. I believe they break rules because they like living on the razor's edge. They like to see if they can do it. It's another kind of high.


New Member
I am new to the site and don't know the acronyms - sorry. Our son is 19 and he is being kicked out of the house this week unless he checks into rehab. He's been an issue since he was 12, and we've had him to counseling, drug evaluation, etc. to no avail. He will not admit he has a problem, but we know (and everyone else knows) that he has one and it's serious. Although my husband is not in complete agreement, we have decided to force him into rehab or kick him out. He's destroying not only his life, but our lives. Last night we found out has been lying about pretty much everything in his life. He's verbally abusing his girlfriend and manipulating her. She may also have a drug problem. We ended up paying the tab on his pizza delivery job last night because he stole the money. My husband did not want th drama of the police being called. We have been enablers long enough. Tonight I received a call from a parent who said her daughter was ready to loan him $500 "to pay his rent". He doesn't pay rent and it was all a lie. He lives at home and pays for his cell phone (barely). Master manipulator. I cannot bear the sight of him, and that breaks my heart. It's not only the drugs: he's a pathological liar, which frightens me even more than the drug use.


Well-Known Member
Hi. You will probably get a better response if you start your own thread. You added your introduction onto an old thread.

I am sorry for your hurting mommy heart. It is too bad, in my opinion, that your husband wouldn't call the police over the theft. We did.

I think a really good start here is to read the article up above on detachment because it is probably what you need to do for your own can't change your son. He is 100% in charge of his behavior and you are only in charge of your own behavior and reactions to your son's behaviors. Your son most likely is acting like he is because addiction makes them really ugly, but his addiction is HIS fault and I agree that it is a good idea to cut out the enabling while he is still young. Picture a 26 or thirty-six year old drug addict coming to you for money, after refusing to work, lying to you, abusing you, call you names, maybe even defacing your house or getting violent...I think it's best to stop the enabling game early on and let him know that if he does not follow your rules, he is on his own...and let him figure it out, even if it makes him very angry and verbally abusive...and if he tells you the way he is is your fault (it's not).

If you like, picking up the book "Codependent No More" by Melodie Beattie is a great start at seeing things differently. It really opened my eyes (and shocked me too!). It's a great read. You can likely get it at your library or you can buy it at any bookstore or online, paperback or E-reader. I also suggest getting face time support from other parents dealing with the same issues. If you have not tried a twelve step program, I strongly recommend giving Narc-Anon a whirl...I love twelve step. It has helped many of us so much. If you don't like that, I'd get into private therapy for yourself because you need to learn how to take good care of yourself even while your son is choosing to self-destruct and your husband is choosing to be passive about it. Nobody should be allowed to abuse you in any way (lying in my opinion is a form of snubbing their noses at us) age eighteen, we can choose to pack their bags. Our house/our rules.

I hope you start another thread so you can get more responses from the lovely, kind, wise ladies of this forum. Welcome to our sometimes sad, but always supportive family.


Well-Known Member
Staff member
TL, I understand perfectly. My difficult child is always looking for away to get around the rules. I don't get it. It is not like it has worked out for them so far. I remember a young man coming back to the treatment center during the family weekend to talk about his life after leaving the Residential Treatment Center (RTC). He said he truly started his recovery when he realized his way wasn't working and surrendered to trying it their way which included following the rules.

I know my difficult child is still not there which is why I don't think she will stay sober after she leaves the halfway house. Therapy has helped me come to the point where I will truly be able to let her go this time if she relapses.

I don't know why they have to keep beating their heads into the wall.

The good news here is that you difficult child did not run and did not go on a bender. I think that shows progress.



New Member
Can you tell me how to start a new thread? I have been in therapy since he was expelled from school for dealing prescription drugs two years ago. My therapist (who I love) was just diagnosed with a brain tumor. My husband is recovering from cancer, I lost my brother to a brain tumor in November, so we're just overwhelmed. He is such a sick, sick young man. Never imagined we'd be here with him. But it is what it is - I have Codependent No More - going to the next available Narc-Anon meeting.....thank you so much.


Well-Known Member
COM.... I think I actually have done a pretty good job of detaching with love, setting boundaries, and finding the balance between loving him and not enabling him. I dont think I can detach so much that I dont care what happens to him, or not be afraid when he puts himself on the streets.

Wednesday when I was unsure of what he was going to do I did not put him up in a hotel. I am not going to help him run away and I am not going to do anything that will help him use drugs. I am very clear on that and he knows it. So Wednesday night he was on the streets until circumstances had the police give him a ride to a shelter.

Yesterday after he found a bed in a sober house we did help him get there and pay for this week. We did that for a couple of reasons.... the first being it gives me great peace of mind to know he is safe and two he is clean and trying to do the next right thing. If we didnt help him then it would have meant more time on the streets for him which would most likely lead him to drug use. I want to support him to stay clean if I possibly can.

I dont agree with the idea that we should totally have nothing to do with him until he figures this all out on his own. People need help from others and it is good to ask for help and I want to be there for him as I would for my daughter or any other loved one.... as long as he is staying clean and trying to do the next right thing.

And he did get a hold of his PO earlier today. Phew. They are not putting a warrant for him and he needs to go to drug court on Wed... if he doesnt show I am sure they will then put out a warrant. And so yes I will help him get to drug court too.

Honestly I am encouraged in some ways. Those of you who have followed my story the last 3 years know that he has a history of getting kicked out of places and then running for a while.... this time he is handling it differently. True he is still breaking rules and getting kicked out which is a problem but he is not running.... but is staying clean and finding solutions and then calling probation and taking his chances on going to jail. So he is making progress even though it is a very twisted path.


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Progress is progress even if it's twisty.

I too am willing to help when it supports a good choice. difficult child dropped by for dinner last night & before he left to head back to North Dakota, I grabbed his face in my hands and told him I loved him and told him to call me FIRST if he needs anything. My difficult child's biggest pitfall is not knowing when to ask for help.

Calamity Jane

Well-Known Member

How's it going today? Did you get any sleep? I'm thinking of you and difficult child - I just feel for that kid and feel like I know him. I love the fact that he improves a little bit, even with his self-induced setbacks. You're a great Mom.


one day at a time
I understand, TL. I have told my difficult child that if he ever starts working a consistent program of change, and we can see that he is sincere and the effort is serious, we will come alongside and help him.

The problem is---he just wants our help when he wants it, the way he wants it. He doesn't get serious or show us through his actions that he is serious.

I have been there done that for too long, and I'm not going to continue being involved with a liar and someone who just wants to keep using drugs and using me.

That is my situation, and I know each situation is unique and people have to do what they feel is right and best. I respect and support that.

Hugs to you and I pray that your son is on a better path this time.


New Member
It's amazing that the stories are so similar here - lying, using, manipulating - crazy - people who exhibit these traits must be pathological. I want to blame it all on the drug use, but I am beginning to realize it's much more than that. Long crying jags for me - but so far, everyone on board to force him into rehab, force change or let him suffer consequences. I feel my heart is becoming hard to him and his lies. Having to warn all family members and his friends of his lying is the hardest and most embarrassing thing ever, but it has to be done to protect people. Never thought I'd be protecting people from what was our smart, funny, engaging son - he's become a criminal and a liar. But we've taken step one and are going to our first Nar-Anon meeting this week. I feel better on this site just knowing other parents today are struggling as we are. Sad company to be in, but reality. He will surely be on the doorstep tonight, crying and promising change and I'm ready for it.


one day at a time
I want to blame it all on the drug use, but I am beginning to realize it's much more than that

It still may be ALL the drug use. You won't know if and until he gets clean and then he can be evaluated for other mental illnesses. If you read about drug addiction, the pathology is there and mirrors other behaviors. Addiction is a primary diagnosis and has to be treated if it is to be dealt with.

You just won't know, and you know what, you really don't have to know the root cause right now. You just have to deal with the behavior. We drive ourselves crazy trying to "master" and "understand" addiction. I have read so many books and talked to many mental health professionals about it. That's okay, but the disease always surprises me, shocks me and sends another zinger out of left field.

It's the disease.

I feel my heart is becoming hard to him and his lies.

I so identify with that statement. Of course we will change over time---we who are in the first line of fire----if we don't we can't survive.

I don't want to be hard-hearted either. My MO is a very soft heart and sometimes I think I'm just cold and hard now. And that is never who I want to be.

But heck, TAS, we have to have some self-protective feelings! This is all so awful, and we get smacked down and have to pick ourselves up over and over again. Slowly, very slowly for some like me, we start to get it.

We start to accept that what we see is what is. No more than that. No less than that. The trail of destruction they leave behind is the reality, at least for today.

We have to make plans for how we are going to deal with it, because if we don't, we are like one of those Saturday night boxing matches, with the hits just coming and coming from one side and then another, and our heads are bouncing back and forth, with no prep and no defense.

I used to live like that but no more. Today, I am doing the only thing I can do, and that is to decide what I will do. I will make mistakes and I can change my mind, but today I have an approach to all of this.

And for me, it's working pretty well, because I have a lot of happiness and peace today.

That's the goal. Not to stop my precious difficult child from taking this path. Tried that; doesn't work. My goals today are about me, not him.


New Member
He tried coming home tonight and I refused to let him in. He was on something, tried to break in, then slammed the garbage can down and left with his girlfriend. Thank God my husband and younger sons are out of town. Don't know what we'll do once they're back and he tries to come home again. Told him we're behind him 100% if he chooses rehab, but if not, he's on his own. Not sure my husband would have been able to deal with this had he been here. The stress makes him crazy. The screaming and yelling has stopped though, repalced by profound sadness for the boy we've lost. I told his girlfriend she has to call 911 if he threatens to take his life or hurt her. Not sure she would. Her situation is as bad as his. Detaching is the hardest thing I'll ever do. But I'm handing this over to God and professionals who can help him, if he so chooses. I do feel the hard line is the right line at this point. Thank you for your encouragement - thought all day about others and their struggles too, and how we can help each other, even a little bit, by reaching out. This is not the club I wanted to be a member of.


Well-Known Member
TL I'm sorry I've been missing, I've been a bit concerned about my difficult child lately and needed to take a break.

I agree that your son is making progress even if it is like Sig says, a little twisted. And I always agree with helping our difficult children when they are doing the next right thing. Let's hope Wednesday goes well and is incentive for him to continue moving forward. You amaze me.


Well-Known Member
I totally understand about needing a break Nancy... I do that too. I hope your difficult child is ok and I also hope you will come here for support when you need it.


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Well-Known Member
Yep, it is "progress not perfection" we're looking for.
I am so glad to hear difficult child didn't run. Am hoping all goes well Wednesday.