drugs again !


Active Member
I cant stand it anymore. The lies, manupulation. My son did 4yrs in prison for armed robbery. I visited every other wknd. Took calls every other wknd. Put money on books. Begged hubby to let him come home once released. Did good for 6 months. Back to drugs and in jail for robbery. And he stole from us for the 15th time. I just talked to him and said i really dont want to hear about prison life again and after he got mad, Said fine i wont contact you then since you dont care. Hung up on me. So why im i feeling guilty.


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I am so sorry. I can't imagine how disappointed and frustrated and angry.

Maybe it's time to stop the visits, phone calls and money on his account. Maybe just mail a letter a month and let him know you hope he is doing ok, that you are praying for him, and that you need boundaries now and in the future.

I haven't dealt with those issues...yet...and I hope I won't have to. But dugs wreak havoc on families.

Our ex daughter in law is in jail awaiting a trial for armed robbery and meth use...



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Its hell. And whats messed up is that i feel guilty for having to put myself first from now on. I cant handle it anymore i physically sick


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Hi Teriobe, Welcome to the forum. It is a safe place here to pour out your story. Many here have been in a similar place. We know how it is to be in the FOG (Fear, Obligation, Guilt) when it comes to trying to detach from and set boundaries with our difficult children. But it is the only way to find some remnants of peace within.

If you have not already read the article on detachment at the top of the Parents Emeritus Forum, you might find it helpful. Here is the link --> Article on Detachment

How old is your son?

Others here have had difficult children in jail or prison and struggled with the same dilemma as yourself. I know the feeling of feeling physically ill as you described. I knew I could not keep going in the same direction, or I would quickly go downhill and not last/live long. I often felt I wanted to just disappear.

It is hard to make changes, but I have learned here on this site that "nothing changes if nothing changes". And the only person we have the power and control over to make change is ourselves. We cannot change or fix our difficult children. They must walk their own path.

Keep posting here and keep reading the other threads. It all helps, as you can find similar situations with many different folks here. Stay with us for support. Take care.
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Active Member
He is 30yrs old. Difficult Child since 16. My husband and i have tried to help giving him rent free roof, free food, car fone. And he goes back to drugs after 6months doing good
Startef to hang with shady people and i warned him. He said he thot he could control it


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It is in our loving parental hearts to want to give to our children and fix their problems. But as our difficult children (DCs) grow into adulthood, what we have always thought to be our "help" is now our "enabling", as they often continue their downward slide. (This is not how we raised them.) It seems often that the more "help" we give, the worse they are. There comes a point of realization and the need to stop the enabling, and set our boundaries. Only then can the change begin -- both change in ourselves and change in the DCs.

There is much wisdom on this site. I highly suggest you read the threads on the Parents Emeritus forum also. You will see the similar themes throughout. You will see stories of struggle and stories of deliverance and stories of ongoing strength and peace in the midst of all the sorrow and grief and anger and fear and guilt that we all have experienced here.

It is a relief to be able to share your situation on this forum. We understand here. You are not alone.


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You probably feel guilty because, like most non thriving adults, he blames you and you think the stereotypical,"if I had been a better parent he'd be a better adult. I caused this. He is still my baby (he isn't) and I have to take care of him or else I am a cold-hearted,bad person., I owe him my life.,"

That's common and wrong thinking, hon. Many things determine what a person turns out to be like. Our loving parenting is the
least of it. None of us told our kids to take drugs and break the law. They got those ideas elsewhere. By age 13 or so our kids are looking towards their peers as much as us and by 16 they are looking at their peers the most, the streets, what goes on in and after school, movies, pop culture, and music. Often forgotten is their own DNA which they can't control. You may have a great genepool. Maybe bio. Dad doesn't. Or grandparents or Uncle Joe was a felon.Maybe in the family DNA someone is an alcoholic with a discard for the law. And your son is a part of his genes on both sides, even if he never met them all.

Even if or son never met his bio. Dad, say, 50% of his DNA lives in him. I am a multiple adoptive mom and almost all adopted parents will swear by DNA. Nature trump's nurture. Im fortunate with my adopted kids...But they are nothing alike. My problem child is my one biological man child. Why? Well, we have tons of messed up people in our DNA. After him I decided to never have another DNA child again but he is already here and miserable. And he won't help himself. He is a clone of my miserable and not nice father. It's scary how much they are alike. Spooky. And they were never close. Ever. It's just the dang DNA. My dad rarely saw his grandchildren (or us, his kids).

We parents need to stop the old fashion thinking that if we had been good parnts we would have successful adult kids. It's not on us. Once they turn 18 they are legal adults and choose their own values and paths, both positive and negative. Your son chose jail. Twice. After you helped him the first time. Maybe he needs to do jail alone this time...Minimal money, mInimal visits. Maybe he will decide to change if he is in enough hurt. It's hard. We dont want them to hurt. Yet they make their own beds.

Are there programs to help him on jail, if so he can learn. Can he work? If so, he should. Money given to them you, and other coveted items, are often used to trade for drugs. There are drugs in jail I hear. If so, he doesn't need your unknowing help to have goods to them.

Do you have other loved ones who are kind to you and deserve your attention and good heart,? Hobbies you love? Groups from church or recreational groups that do things you enjoy? Your son is 30. While you will always have mothered him as a young one, he no longer needs a ",mommy" and its time for you in my opinion to back off and have a good rest of your life. You can not control a 30 year old man and he has to do it himself. His problems do not have to step in your tracks. He is not you. You are not him. You don't owe him your very life. Yes, I know it's a different mindset, but nothing worked so far.Try something new for yourself and him. Make him act 30. His mess. He has to deal with it like a man. I mean, you don't have to...but you can't live forever.

Love and biG hugs. We are with you. You can do this. You r strong and caring.
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100% better than I was but not at 100% yet

Welcome and glad that you found us. You have gotten great advice here already.

My son never went to prison but he sure was headed that way. We went through a lot with him from age 15-20 and then I found this site. After many years of struggling and not finding anything that helped him or us, I read others' stories here and gained strength to move him out of our home. He was only 20 and it was very hard on me. I realized I had to let go and let him grow up and so glad that I did. He was ruining our family and our marriage and I didn't even want to go home after work. He was ruining our lives. How can someone you love so much and want the best for be ruining your life? I envied those that I knew went home from work to a peaceful evening.

My advice is to pull away from your son and work on yourself. Nothing YOU have done thus far has helped him. HE is an adult and HE has to choose what kind of person HE wants to be. The days of mommy are long gone. He needs to stand on his own two feet. See a therapist to help you set boundaries with him.

You can love him unconditionally but your relationship does have conditions. That is okay! I learned that from my therapist. I did not know that.

I definitely would NEVER let him live in your home again. I would make that very clear to him immediately so he can think about what HE is going to do once he is released. He has to figure his life out on his own. You are not going to live forever. I don't know your age but I imagine you are close to my age and it's time to enjoy YOUR life.

You only feel guilty if you let yourself. You have nothing to feel guilty for. Have some self compassion. We all forget how hard this is on us. It will only stop if you set firm boundaries with him. He needs that as much as you do.


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i really dont want to hear about prison life again and after he got mad, Said fine i wont contact you then since you dont care. Hung up on me. So why im i feeling guilty.
Look. He wants what HE wants. This is not about responsibility, obligation. It is about control.

Let me spell this out: your son wants complete control in his life; without responsibility and obligation. He uses "guilt" to manipulate YOU into feeling obligated and responsible for HIM, and when it does not work he feels frustrated and angry that YOU are not fulfilling your proscribed role.

We become such trained monkeys that we do feel "guilt" when they suffer. This guilt is automatic because it is programmed into us as mothers, because it is adaptively advantageous to protect the species. After all, it would not feel so good if we walked away and left them when they were 6 months old!

You get the issue. They are not 6 months old! But we are stilled tied into the same automatic guilt sense, when they suffer. It is hard to turn this off and this is why many parents create distance. Especially if their children are still off the rails, feeling it is their parents who SHOULD be solving their problems and meeting their needs.

In my own experience until their is some distance created, where the adult child has the opportunity to FEEL the consequences of their choices, their behavior--they will not much change. Because they feel that their agency is in you.

Until I was able to break that link my son did not change in relation to me. He is struggling now to change in relation to his own life. Because he sees I am a highly inadequate and undependable provider to him. Now that he is 28 years old. I have learned to some extent to break the link of FOG. But I have not yet mastered the fear. I am still afraid.

Take care. I am glad you are here. I hope you post a lot. It helps very much.


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You are not alone. I felt guilt for many years. It took a lot of help from support groups to get to where I could finally start thinking about my self. He is 30 years old, he needs to grow up. I know I sound harsh but none of this is your fault. I hope you find peace.