Bribe to attend treatment?

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by PatriotsGirl, Oct 7, 2010.

  1. PatriotsGirl

    PatriotsGirl Guest

    Talked to difficult child yesterday. I asked her how she was doing and she said she was alive and so she couldn't complain. I asked her about her job and she groaned, asked about the room mate and living situation and again she groaned. She sounded pretty down and out, not chipper as she was when she made this decision. I asked her if she was ready for treatment and she said possibly. Truth is, I think she is running out of options. I don't believe she really has this job, or had this ideal room mate situation lined up. Rehab would do SO much good for her and her life!! I wish she would realize this.
    Anyway, I really, really really want her in treatment. I cannot force her to go, but the judge can and I believe he will. Especially when we have insurance and want her to go. I found a dual treatment facility that is about an hour away from us and takes our insurance. She is being brought in front of the judge for failed probation (failed another drug test and had quite the actress bit going swearing she hasn't done any drugs) but it will be a few months before we get in court. I do NOT want to wait that long. I also know it would completely hoover for any one to have to spend the holidays in rehab.
    So, I had an idea. What if we bribed her into going? I thought about telling her if she goes into treatment and successfully goes through the program, we will get her her first car for Christmas. She would have to get a job to get it registered and insured but it would be a great thing to have waiting for her when she got out. A great start for a new life? A way to get to a job every day, have responsibility, etc.
    All of you parents here are so grounded. What do you think? Are you against bribery for treatment or feel what ever it takes to get her in?
  2. Josie

    Josie Active Member

    I am not sure about a car with all of its harmful potential, especially for a drug user. I have given what I call "incentives" for treatment in the past.
  3. smallworld

    smallworld Moderator

    I personally wouldn't bribe her to go into treatment. To give her a car for going into treatment is rewarding her for something that just should happen because it's the right thing to do. I think it's OK for her to live with a little pain and to accept the consequences of her behavior -- if she does drugs, she gets ordered to treatment by a judge. If treatment falls over the holidays and she's not with your family, that's how it has to be. It's a sad lesson for both parents and children alike.
  4. trinityroyal

    trinityroyal Well-Known Member

    First off, I think it would be a mistake to provide your difficult child with a car until you know for sure that she's clean and sober, and committed to staying that way. Otherwise, you're contributing to her ability to drive while impaired. A bad lesson for her AND your easy child.

    My other thoughts are...

    If your difficult child is still using and manipulating the system, then she should receive the natural consequences of her behaviour. If that means not being home for Christmas, then so be it. Honestly, the peace of a Christmas without drug-fuelled drama might be worth the disappointment of not having your whole family together for the holidays. I also think that offering a reward sets a really bad example not just for your difficult child, but for your easy child as well. If you give her a reward for doing what's right, that tells her that she can behave badly, clean up her act a little bit, and get a big prize. It also teaches your easy child the same lesson -- why should he work hard and be good if his sister gets rewarded for being bad?

    I think that the rehab process might be more meaningful for your difficult child if she either goes of her own free will or is ordered in by the court. If she goes because you will buy her a present for it, then it's just more manipulation on her part, and encouragement to "play the game" until people stop bugging her, rather than to truly work the program.

    For a lot of our difficult children, they only start doing what's right when they've been backed into a corner and have no other choice. I would try to take every action that would back her into that corner sooner. And getting her an "escape vehicle" won't achieve that.

  5. PatriotsGirl

    PatriotsGirl Guest

    This is why I ask for opinions here. Thank you. You are all right on. I was assuming she would be sober and ready for a new life when she got out of the program. The car wouldn't have been road ready. She would have to work and earn that. She doesn't even have a driver's license, yet. So, it would take a bit of work on her part to actually be able to use the car. I thought it could be a carrot. A goal to work towards. But, I should know by now to never assume anything when it comes to difficult children.

    My only issue is that she absolutely will not get in front of the judge until early next year. Her PO already told me that much. Quite frankly, my fear is she will be dead by then. We are not talking about pot use here. So, I am a bit desperate to once again "save" difficult child. I know. This is part of the codependancy issue. But I know I could never live with myself if she were to OD and I didn't try absolutely everything I could to help her.

    Is there any way I can get her in there with out having to wait for court? Anything that has worked for any one?
  6. trinityroyal

    trinityroyal Well-Known Member

    I'm just throwing some ideas out. I don't know whether such things are available in your area, or how to go about initiating them. Just thinking out loud...

    1) I'm thinking about the "threat to self or others", which can get her committed to a psychiatric evaluation/hold in a psychiatric hospital?
    2) A PINS or CHINS petition, or whatever the equivalent is in your area (PINS = Person In Need of Supervision, in effect "incorrigible" and in need of serious help). It might help you to get her fast-tracked for services?
    3) Reporting her to the police for any other illegal activity she may have committed, while on probation for the matter currently before the courts? It might end up with her having to stay in JD, but you would know she's safe in there.
    4) Do-to-get? Make going to rehab a condition of continuing to live at home, if she's at home. If she's out of the house, but you're providing her with any other support - financial or otherwise - cut her off unless she goes to rehab. This is akin to the reward discussed above, but more along the lines of natural consequences for poor choices rather than a bribe for good ones.

    I'm not really sure what else to suggest.
  7. PatriotsGirl

    PatriotsGirl Guest

    Thanks Trinity.
    We had her hospitalized after last Christmas because she sent me a text saying she wanted to die. We had her admitted, but the stay was only nine days and they sent her home. Did nothing. Cost us a fortune because an ambulance had to take her to the hospital and then to the psychiatric hospital.
    I am not sure if I can file CHINS, she is a legal adult in our state and she is already on probation. Worth checking into...I will ask her PO.
    If she has done anything illegal, I do not know about it. She is not in our home. We are not providing anything other than a cellphone and the only reason we left it on is so I at least know she is alive and can sleep at night.
    We have most definitely made rehab a condition of living here. I have repeatedly told her I love her and she is wanted and has a home, but she MUST attend a three month rehab program if she wants to live here. She has not asked to come home which is why I am grasping for ideas to force her into treatment. Thanks for the ideas - I really appreciate any and all responses!! :)
  8. Jena

    Jena New Member

    ok i openly admit i have no advice here lol :) i just wanted to let you know i'm here and listening and i'm sure you will make the right decision. ((hugs)))
  9. slsh

    slsh member since 1999

    If she goes to rehab for you, or as a condition that you set, more than likely it's not going to work. She has to choose rehab and not because it's the easiest way out or the only option left. She has to want to get clean/stay clean.

    Believe me, I completely understand your fears. I live with- them myself. But this is not something we can do for our kids. We can't work the program, we can't provide motivation, and we can't make them stop using. This has to genuinely be something they want.

    My son amazes me to this day with his capacity for misery. His quality of life is ... well, unbearable to me. But it's his life and only *he* can change it. I'd help in a heartbeat if I thought he was really moving forward, really trying. But he isn't and so we wait. It's probably the toughest stage of his life, for me anyway. I just hope that he'll survive until he gets to the point where even he can't ignore how deep a hole he's dug for himself and decides to do something to turn it around.

    It's incredibly hard. I'm so sorry.
  10. PatriotsGirl

    PatriotsGirl Guest

    Hard is quite an under statement. I feel completely helpless. I don't get it. I don't get her.

    I checked the cellphone records. She has not used her phone since 10:20pm last night. This is NOT like her. Usually the records show use all day and all night to the point I wonder if other people are using her phone while she sleeps or if she even sleeps at all. I tried calling her and it didn't even ring. Went straight to voicemail. I'm worried. This hoovers. She is supposed to see her PO today. I don't think she will show up there....maybe they will put a warrant out for her and she will get picked up, sent to detention and have to sit there until we get in front of the judge and then he can force her to go. Maybe it won't work, but maybe it will. I can hope.

    It is comforting to know I am not alone in dealing with this sort of stuff. I just hate that we all do have to deal with this type of stuff. :(
  11. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    There are bribes and then there are BRIBES. I wouldnt offer a car for love or money. That is just too much risk. Something smaller like the opportunity to attend a semester of further education if she cleans up her act, well that might be something I would consider. Or maybe even helping out with getting first month and a deposit on an apt if she completed rehab successfully.

    I have actually offered to help my son obtain a scooter because of his driving privilege fiasco but Im not going to do the whole thing for him. I might consider putting it in my name to obtain the credit if he came up with the down payment and he arranged it so I could manage his funds so I knew the payments were made each month. It would have to be worked out well in advance before I put myself out though. I might make a few payments as gifts for xmas, birthdays, easter and such. However, scooters are pretty cheap and you dont need a license which is why he needs one.