CRAFT and Harm Reduction....weigh in please.

Discussion in 'Substance Abuse' started by Littleboylost, Jul 26, 2017.

  1. Littleboylost

    Littleboylost On the road unwanted to travel

    Has anyone ever been given mixed messages and information regarding how to manage addicted Difficult Child?

    We are in this boat.
    CRAFT The community resources provides through juvenile court and bail program are all about Comunity Resources and family Trainjng. This method is against putting your child out via tough love.
    Harm Reduction Therapy
    Thai is the out patient community rehab focus. They do not drug test ....although bail indicates our son should not be using any substances at all.

    What I see with this approach pardon my term her but I think it is Bull :censored2:. It encourages my son to think he can continue using, and makes him feel like he is above the law. The rehab couselor cancels and reschedules more meetings than she attends with him it is rediculius.

    I think they encourage you to keep them at home so they don't have to deal with finding a youth housing and placing more of a burden on them vs you. The claim 2/3 of CRAFT participants get to rehab and reach sobriety.

    Our family couselor knows or son and said CRAFT works with willing participants. She agrees it's time for son to see the door and figure his crap out for himself. She is certain that hRm Reduction and CRAFT are doing more harm than good for him.

    It eats you up inside to have mixed messages from so-called experts in the field. I have searched the community resources on line and see that they all have sketchy backgrounds as managers of restaurants and certificate in rehab and cousleing. Our family therapist has her PhD and was a director of a local youth rehab facility for a decade. I think it is time to take the real experts advise here.

    It is baby steps for me. I am slowly detaching.

    Any thoughts regarding CRAFT and Harm Reduction vs Tough Love??
  2. ksm

    ksm Well-Known Member

    I don't know those agencies, but we are in a similar predicament. Jan/Feb Difficult Child age 16, ran off for several days at a time. I always reported her missing. When picked up by police...positive for meth. I tried to leave her in the youth shelter, as the workers there suggested. Then she would go before judge before returning home. The next day, the DA office calls and tells me to pick her up. I tried to decline, saying I could not keep her safe. He threatened me with child abandonment if I did not.

    Long story, condensed version. Difficult Child now 17. Not running away, but still positive for meth. I found and have her in an intensive outpatient rehab, 3 hours a day, 3 times a week x 8 weeks. Each trip is 100 miles round trip.

    Now court services officer is requesting the judge brings her back to court. What next? I have heard it might be a one month residential treatment, or out of home placement.

    The court services officer said the court has taken away all the consequences he used to be able to do. Like weekend lock ups, community service, ankle bracelet device.

    I feel caught in the middle, the judge expects me to keep her from drugs. At AlAnon I am learning I can not control the addict. I hope what ever happens next will force her to decide she doesn't want to continue the path she is on.

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  3. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    My own opininion on leniency for drug using kids is that it doesnt work, empowers kids to get high and live comfy while doing it, and doesnt encourage or motivate quitting. The kids have got to believe nothing will happen to them for drug using in our homes.

    Exactly how are we supposed to stop drug use? Lock them in the house 24/7? Insane. Impossible.

    At 18, at least in the U.S. they can then be thrown in jail. Crazy.
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2017
  4. RN0441

    RN0441 100% better than I was but not at 100% yet

    I think any of that CAN work IF and only IF the person using wants help/wants to stop.

    Otherwise throw it all in the toilet and flush twice!

    My son has been exposed to every possible thing that is available on heaven and earth to get him to seek sobriety and stay sober. He wasn't ready to stop destroying himself. Okay that's fine. We were ready! We were done living like that.

    We had no choice but to tell him he could no longer live in our home. Nothing else worked. I wish we had done THAT earlier rather than later. Could have prevented years of spinning our wheels.

    In your heart as a mom you just KNOW they aren't getting it and yet you just keep trying until you are an exhausted heap of skin trying to maintain a "normal" life for yourself and your spouse, other kids etc.

    I have to keep reminding myself of this so that I don't get sad/get soft/feel bad that our son is far away in sober living missing his family.

    I still don't know if he "gets it" BUT I do know that he knows this is the only way he'll have his parents in his life. Is that enough? I don't know the answer to that.
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  5. Teriobe

    Teriobe Active Member

    My sons first rehab at 16 was a joke. They tested him but refused to give me results. They wanted him to feel safe enough to tell them if he used ir not or confess. They took away my power to disapline him. That out patient did nothing but hook him up to other using teens to go party and find new dealers.
  6. Jabberwockey

    Jabberwockey Well-Known Member

    I've had no experience with either of those organizations or their equivalents. What I can tell you is that I've had multiple offenders tell me that rehab is useless unless you want to change. Realistically, even tough love wont make them change, it will just help you to detach from their drama. Its all on the individual. You can lead a horse to water but you can't make him drink.
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  7. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    From my daughter...NOTHING will help until you are ready. If you are ready, unless you need medicine to detox, you will quit if you are done. Many quit when they are no longer in contact with us and then come back to tell us they quit. They do it often withoutas around at all.

    Until they are ready nothing works. But at least our own lives can go on if they are not underfoot in our home. And bankrupting ourselves wont make an addict quit.

    Usually quitting does happen after they are sick and tired of walking this path alone, having nothing, having to wake each day panicking how to get their drug of choice before they get dope sick. It is a daily struggle. If we make it easier, we impede this process.
  8. Littleboylost

    Littleboylost On the road unwanted to travel

    This is my fear.
  9. Littleboylost

    Littleboylost On the road unwanted to travel

    For all who are on here it may help me to remind you that I am Canadian which is why the programs and acronyms may sound unfamilir and foreign....because they are lol. PS I just checked the time I logged on and it was 4:20. I am not kidding. It made me LOL. Thank you for your input. The decision to ask a child of 17 almost 18 to leave your home is not an easy one.
    D.C. Made it to bail hearing on time and to his first outpatient group on time. I texted with him this morning, as he spent the night at a Friends. I reminded him of his appointments and left it at that. I can only imagine he is a bit of a smelly mess as he had no overnight amenities with him. BUT HE MADE IT!! sent me a text saying he liked group and asked his bail officer about more therapy. Baby steps hope with no expectations.
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  10. RN0441

    RN0441 100% better than I was but not at 100% yet

    Yes hard when they are young agree and still not clear on what you can do in Canada!! LOL It sounds confusing.

    I would do anything to prevent living like you are though. It's not good for any of you and I doubt you can go on like this indefinitely.

  11. Littleboylost

    Littleboylost On the road unwanted to travel

    I hear you RN. I have to ask my American friends to clarify some program and service acronyms for me. Bottom line in Ontario (as all provincial and territory laws are different. Which is a collosal waste of health Care and government $$ for a county population = to the state of California). The child can choose to leave at 16. You can not legally kick them out until they are 18. The youth justice act makes in nearly impossible to incarcerate youth unless they have a long criminal history and have committed a serous crime (murder, assault with a deadly weapon....). You can not force them into rehab (but going by force would not help anyway). They get probation and no jail time after you weave your way through the lengthy court process. If they breach probation they can be diverted to a program called Project DARE it is an intensive in house drug rehab and behavior treatment program. They have to agree to go vs going to jail. They spend a minimum of 60 days and can be kept up to 6 months. They have an incredible track record of success. There is a similar program called PIne River that is a co pay program. We have offered this to our son before having him arrested; and he has declined. We have steered clear of the private rehabs as they are very expensive and have very poor track records of success.
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2017
  12. RN0441

    RN0441 100% better than I was but not at 100% yet

    Well you could tell him he has to go to rehab or find another place to live - like we did. Then after rehab have him go to sober living or whatever you call it in Canada.

    That is if and when you feel that he isn't willing to buckle down and accept your rules to stay in your home. I don't know HOW long you've been doing this with him but I know how exhausting it is. We did it from age 15-20 but we did have long periods of normalness (sobriety) in between or it would have happened before it did.
  13. Littleboylost

    Littleboylost On the road unwanted to travel

    We have know he was dabling in drugs from 15 and he began to spiral mid 16 so we have been at this hars core for a year and a bit. We had him arrested in May he is mandated to go to our patient rehab when he wast compliant he left the home and we refused to let him back in until he started attending his outpatient rehab. This is the one focused on harm reduction. Our Hosue our rules zero tolerance. I was ready to make him leave (weather he left on his own or we kicked him out we would argue with the law that he chose to leave and we don't want him husband folded on Sunday and couldn't go through with it. I am not so sure we have sober living centres here in Canada.
  14. RN0441

    RN0441 100% better than I was but not at 100% yet

    Similar to us. At age 15 we thought it was what a lot of teens do - smoke a little weed - and then things started to take off and we felt like we'd been hit by a fast moving train. Not really sure what was happening. Both husband and I had experimented at a young age but what he was doing/what we were seeing was quickly by far surpassing our experiences and we were both a bit on the wild side.

    Every time things would calm down we'd think things were "going to be okay" and then he'd ramp up again. Frightening and exhausting.

    Now looking back with years of experience I can clearly see that we were seeing addiction take hold. I did not even know what it really was. I do know the hopeless and helpless feelings that I had and I never want to feel that way again....for anyone. I just can't.
  15. Littleboylost

    Littleboylost On the road unwanted to travel

    That is exactly were I am at. I can't keep on the Hamster wheel. I had severe depression set in. Got help for that and put the plan in place with my husband and our family therapist that son broke rules by bringing pot home and he would have to go. He also shows signs of still using. Not getting up for work, not cleaning his room or doing his chores $50 went missing from my purse, he took car without permission.... my husband could not bring himself to have him leave. We put a united from on for our son and rewrote the family rules has a family meeting Sunday. Said this was a HUGE gift that he was not being put out of the home and this type of leniency wound not happen again. If the husband folds again I will have to leave. I simply agree RN I can't live like this any more.
  16. RN0441

    RN0441 100% better than I was but not at 100% yet

    I remember so many bad things that happened in our home due to my son's drug use. Things that I have suppressed because I don't want to think about them anymore. I wanted to deny reality and not face that it was so bad. This couldn't be happening to our family! I do hope and pray that you and your husband get on the same page so things can get better for you. I would suggest therapy for yourself at least so you can stay sane. It takes a while but it has helped me tremendously.

    I used to dread going home after work because I did not know what would be waiting for me. I started to think that I'd rather be dead than go on like that, yet everything else in my life was/is so good but I didn't know how to make it stop.
  17. Littleboylost

    Littleboylost On the road unwanted to travel

    I am in therapy. And we are in couples therapy. My husband agreed to go through with our plan to ask D.C. to leave when we where at our therapist but then he caved and couldn't go through with it. I get it I have been on the emotional yoyo of what to do vs having the courage to do it. I have spoke to husband and said no more. I pray if/when it comes down to it he does not fold again.
  18. ColleenB

    ColleenB Active Member

    I'm so sorry you are living this nightmare.... I too live in Canada (east coast) and we have found there is next to nothing here for help. Our son turns 23 today and we have been on this roller coaster since he was 18/19.

    He recently went to detox for the first time, but they only kept him a week and I don't think that was even close to adequate. However, at least it was his decision so he is starting to acknowledge he has a problem. Up to this point he pretty much denied an addiction. He moved out this past month... that has helped my mental health but it's always there in your mind.... it's like a huge heartbreak that clings to everything.... listening to friends talk about their kids is like having a knife in the heart as you don't want to or can't talk about your kid... it's carying around so much shame and pain.

    I am finding we pay lip service to understanding mental illness and addiction but the reality is that we still blame and judge. The system does not help.

    We have spent some time reading and learning about CRAFT and I think the theory is actually good... but it would depend on the implementation and who is involved, their skill set.. training... etc...

    I have never been able to do the tough love angle... as our son is usually very amiable... there was a brief period when he was young he was more volatile, mostly anger. However he has been more depressed as of late and we just couldn't tell him to leave. He has been told we will always have a bed for him. Even so, I understand how others have had to ask their kids to leave. I think for me, understanding we each have very different circumstances and individuals. Our son may have different needs than yours, no two situations are exactly the same.

    Today is his 23rd birthday and I don't know how I feel. We are having a small family BBQ with his grandparents , which we made sure he was ok with, and he did express wanting to see them. It's so sad to see him now as he isn't happy. It's hard to explain it to family but I'm sure they suspect. Some members know, but grandparents do not.

    Having a hard time getting myself out of bed today... some days are harder than others. I do wish some peace for you and your family, it's a tough road.
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  19. Littleboylost

    Littleboylost On the road unwanted to travel

    Hey Colleen B thanks for reaching out. I too am sorry for your situation with your son. Mixed addiction and mental health is such a tough one.
    We known my son has Conduct Disorder and any claims he has to depression and anxiety are mostly manipulation. That does not negate the issue that his brain is drug addled and probably has been hard core for a good 1 1/2 years. We started our battles with him when he was 14. He has progressively gotten worse.
    I hate the fact that our socialized health care is so fractured across provinces. There is simply no need for all this beauacracy, the money could be better spent on services! That being said detox is usually a week. Did no one offer him in patient care for rehab and mental health counseling?? I am finding if you don't ask you don't get.
    Our son is out on bail after we had him arrested for selling drugs from our home. He has mandatory our patinet rehab and bail meetings weekly. He has been processed for a psychiatric consult from our family therapist which was 9 months ago. Finally have an appointment.
    Just as I was ready to throw in the towel on all this soft catch CRAFT and harm reduction treatment; I believe our son has turned a corner. I think but I am not certain that it was a big health scare and bad outcomes from going back to smoking poppers and perhaps other drugs.
    He went to his bail meeting early and voluntarily went to a rehab group meeting for youth. On his own not calls for transportation. I was scared to death because he has stayed at a friends overnight and that usually spells trouble and missed meetings.
    He still had charges to face 2 counts of possession. Very fortunate he was not charged with trafficking and breaching bail. I honestly thought being arrested and spending time in custody would have been bottom for our son, it was certainly bottom for me. He has had us on a ride from arrest until yesterday. I was at my wits end and ready to ask him to leave. My husband wanted to give him one more chance....we will see where this takes is.
    I suffered a sever depression and am in antidepressants now, and I hear you about friends they are all sending kids off to school while ours is in jail and rehab. It's a tough one not to take personally isn't it. Close friends are incredibly supportive.
    Son went to work today spoke to the owner of the company he is working with (he wasn't getting any hours); he is back to work. He has to go to court next week. It will be the first time we will not go with him. He will be reuqesting a lawyer (declined legal aid as he is not facing jail time the court will over turn this decision and court order legal aid, another rediculous waste of resources if he is a minor and the court will order legal aid why don't they just approve it in the first place.
    Hang in there you are not alone. Addiction is a disease as is mental illness. Gabore Mate is a great resource!
    Perhaps I will be humbled in the end by this soft love/CRAFT and Harm Reduction approach and there may come a time to tough it out and have him leave. Only time will tell.
  20. RN0441

    RN0441 100% better than I was but not at 100% yet

    One day at a time ladies!
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