Emergency custody order, didn't go as planned.

Discussion in 'Substance Abuse' started by So sad, Jul 19, 2014.

  1. So sad

    So sad New Member

    Hi, I'm new to this website although I have been reading for a week now I thought it was time to share my story. My 18 year old difficult child has always been a high need child, took lots to keep him happy but he was our 1st born and we were so grateful to have him and still are but things are really bad right now. In January of this year he total lost his car, he wasn't hurt thank God but this is where his downward spiral began. When I went to the wreck he was crying said he never wanted to drive again by the time I got him home he wanted to know when he was getting another car. Really? To make a long story shorter by the end of the night the sheriff had to come after he wrecked the house and left, stumbled back in high as a kite and talked to the sheriff and went to bed. Before we even had to worry about getting him another car he broke his leg at a party, never got the real story. He missed his whole soccer season of his senior year, he was captain of the soccer team and could have cared less. Drugs became more and more prevalent in his life.
    Finally got him to see a psychiatrist, always had anger issues and an I don't give a crap attitude toward everything. They prescribed him Effexor for anxiety and seemed to be working had gone about 3 weeks with no arguments and even got a job. Then he stopped his medications said he was tired of kissing our buts . I went in one morning to this room to wake him up to go to work and the bottom fell out he cussed me out beat up his room and quit his job and left. That was a Wednesday on Saturday he come home to get more clothes and cussed me out and left. Sunday he called while we were at church and was crying and sorry and wanted to come home so he did. When we got home he got up and was so angry, he cussed us did about$2000 in damages to the house and left. On Tuesday he came home, we had set up counseling with his psychiatrist and he was ok with it until he woke up Wednesday morning went into a rage and left,I called sheriff and filed a Eco , they picked him up and took him to the hospital where the evaluator deemed him fine and released him. He is living with girlfriend and her family for now. I know this is crazy but I miss him so much this has broken my heart but I also have a 9 year old son I have to protect. Any advice would be appreciated. He has a scholarship for college and is throwing it all away. At the hospital he tested positive for weed and cocaine , but he was fine what a joke. My husband and I have set up counseling for us to figure out what to do next.
  2. Lil

    Lil Well-Known Member

    So sad, I'm glad you've found these forums and so sorry you have had to. I didn't want you to think that no one has anything to say to you. The forums have been unusually quiet today. I found this place a couple years ago and then came back recently. I wish I had words of wisdom, but I think I'm too new. Others will be better suited to help you I'm sure.

    I will say this: Counseling will do you a world of good and it's wise of you to set up that appointment. Your son is 18, not much you can do about his life choices. I know, really, how much it hurts to see your child going down this path, but you cannot let him be in your home if he's violent and destructive. You have a young child you must protect from both danger and influence.

    Right now you know where he is. He has a roof over his head and presumably food and clothing. That's more than a lot of people have. Try to take some comfort in that for now.

    I'm so sorry for your pain. ((hugs))
  3. ForeverSpring

    ForeverSpring Well-Known Member

    Hi and I"m sorry you are in this place that so many of us have been in.

    What do you think you should do next? Is he out of high school? Even if he's not, he is not a child at all anymore, but legally an adult and everything he does is his choice and on his head. There is very little you can do unlesshe himself wants to get help and wants you a part of his recovery.

    Cocaine is a serious drug, one that my daughter used. I would put college on the backburner right now if he is using stuff that heavy and maybe some that don't show up on drug tests. At least, I wouldn't pay for him to go to college or support him in a dorm with my money at all until he is straight. He won't make it one semester with his drug habit. Many of us have tried it only to lose any money we contributed to the college attempt. Lat thing he needs is a dorm with no supervision and nonstop parties. He will gravitate to them.

    Since he is eighteen, you and your husband CAN get counseling with somebody to learn how to cope and focus more on yourselves and take good care of yourself, but your son's sessions, if he goes, will be private. And many of our adult children will not go.

    Bottom line is, you can't fix him unless he comes to you willingly asking you to help him find ways to help himself, in which I'd be very supportive. Other than that...right now, today, he is who he is. There is nothing you CAN do but accept it since we can not change another person. We have 0% control over others, even our adult children, but we have 100% over ourselves and how we choose to handle our problems and live our lives and many of us live good lives even as your adult children mess up theirs. Also, a significant number of our difficult children, do straighten out because they CHOOSE to do so, not because we nag, not because we push them to go to rehab, and not because we feel sorry for them and let them live at home, feed them money, and try to lift their self-esteem. We can't. They have to do it. Let GFs parents take on this burden for now. They will probably get tired of it, but he's there for now. One day at a time.

    Your son needs to decide to work on first of all the drug abuse and he has to take this trip alone, then he needs to realize he needs a lot of hard working therapy for his anger. Do you have other kids? If he rages, he is a danger to you and anyone else living there. I personally would not allow that sort of verbal diarrhea and lack of working and job abuse to live in my house. To me, the more uncomfortable they are with their lives, the more apt they are to change them. At least that is how I feel and what I've experienced.

    The money train should be cut off completely. You are not The Bank. The longer we feel bad and feed them money, the more they abuse us and act ungrateful and stay adult children in their minds. Often the money doesn't go to what they claim it's for but to drugs. Cutting off the money supply in my opinion is the most important step parents can take in helping their adult children learn to take care of themselves, and it does hurt to say "no" but say "no" we must, and with conviction. The adult children do tend to have money. We may never know where it's from, it may be from illegal sources, but they do tend to survive quit well. If we support their drug habits by giving them rent money (drug money), food money (drug money) or cigarette money (silly because they don't get better by smoking cigarettes, they are expensive and they DO NOT help your adult abstain from other drug use)....we are actually helping them buy drugs or use the money in ways we didn't mean it to be spent. If you must pay something pay directly to the utility company or landlord. Do not put one penny in your grown man's hands. Know where your money goes, if you feel you have to help in some way. I feel it's better not to help at all, but that's me and we're all different.

    Of course you miss that child you loved before he became a drug user, but that's not who he is now, and if you have a nine year old, it is time to focus on him. Too often our difficult children suck up all our oxygen and nobody gets attention but them. Your son is a young adult (the 18-21 adult category). Your little boy is a child. He needs you more than your older son. And perhaps you and your SO can get closer and start having fun.

    Your life is precious, and maybe if you went to Al-Anon or Nar-Anon or NAMI (National Alliance for the Mentally Ill) or a private therapist for YOU...or maybe all of them...you can learn how others move on in spite of similar problems and can actually enjoy your lives. Let your son figure out what to do with his life. As long as you enable his behavior, in my opinion he is unlikely to think about changing it.

    Hugs for your sad, hurting mommy heart. We care.
    Last edited: Jul 19, 2014
  4. So sad

    So sad New Member

    MidwestMom, we have cut all money off to him he does have a cell phone for my piece of mind other than that he is not allowed back into the house and he knows it. I have told him when he decides he is ready to get himself together I will get him counseling. I don't know what it will take for him to be able to come home. The therapist we are seeing Tuesday also specializes in substance abuse so when he decides or if he ever decides to get clean we will have someone we already know ready to help him. The thing with the girlfriend is her dad has been in the hospital for a couple weeks and I feel when he gets out he will clean house so we'll see what happens with that situation but for right now he does have somewhere to stay.

    Lil, thanks for your kind words. I really hope the counseling helps, we'll see.
  5. Childofmine

    Childofmine one day at a time

    Hi and welcome, so sad. I am so sorry that you are in this situation with your precious son. My son is almost 25 (about 10 more days til his birthday) and we have experienced much of what you describe.

    My difficult child was a high needs child from the minute he was born: colic, formula intolerance, shyness, fear of new situations, didn't want to go to preschool or kindergarten, difficulty with separation from me, almost too perfect in elementary school, didn't want to call attention to himself, then did a 180 in middle school, became the class clown and cutup. On and on, until the drinking and the drugs and the arrests and the jail terms and suicide threats and all of the horror of the past four years.

    It is not crazy. Of course you love your son so much. I love my son very much as well. And yes, our hearts are broken. But so sad, there is life in the middle of this insanity. Believe me, it can be a good life,full of joy and contentment and purpose, amid the bouts of sadness and frustration and fear.

    This is your key sentence. Your son is a drug addict. His behavior tells that story. His rage, his erratic ups and downs, his out of control behavior, this person who you don't even recognize, has been taken over by drugs. Drugs are doing the talking and the acting right now. And until he wants his life to be different, drugs will rule.

    Great decision on your part. I would also find and go to at least six Al-Anon meetings---they are free---and wonderful---over the next couple of weeks. Keep on going, even if you are very uncomfortable at first. You don't have to say a word. There is tremendous understanding, compassion, love and support there, and the 12 step program is a blueprint for your own recovery from dealing with addiction. You have likely been doing what comes naturally, and that is to do everything in your power to reason with him, make him stop, cry, beg, plead, shake him...and sadly, none of that will do one single thing unless and until he is ready for change. Al-Anon will help you get your sanity back, one meeting, one book/reading and one phone call at a time. Also, please get and read CoDependent No More by Melody Beattie and another great book is When the Servant Becomes the Master, and there are many others. This is the start of building your own toolbox so that you have tools to help you get your life back, regardless of what your son does or does not do.

    You can only decide what you will and will not tolerate. I drew up multiple contracts for my son to sign, and gave him chance after chance after chance to live in my house and be respectful. Finally, after looking the other way for way, way too long, and trying to fix/manage/control/reason with him for years about his behavior, I gave him the final contract---reduced to one simple page---and he sat, looked at me, tore it up, and I said: Okay, leave this house. He took his clothes, what he could carry, and he walked down the street. It was one (not THE toughest, because there were more to come, that I didn't know about, that day) of the toughest days of my life. I cried for about two days straight.

    But believe me, and please, try to learn more quickly than I did, and from the experience of others, know that drug addicts and alcoholics are NOT unique. Each story, while slightly different on the details, is exactly the same story.

    He will have to get completely and utterly sick and tired of his life today before he will be motivated to change it. As long as there is a safety net, and somebody else is doing things for him that he should be doing for himself, he will not change.

    Today, my son is homeless...again. This is the fifth time he has been homeless. He has multiple misdemeanors and two felonies. This young man had every advantage in life. He had a nice home, in church every Sunday, two parents who are college educated professionals, a car to drive, paid-for college, every sport he wanted to play in, vacations, trips, nice clothes, including 4 years on the high school soccer team, like your son. Addiction is no respecter of socio-economic status, of educational status, of any kind of difference in each of us. It is a brain disease, and it is incurable, but it can be arrested, through recovery, through treatment, and through hard work every single day for the rest of their lives. But they have to want it. We can't want it for them enough. It has to be THEM.

    So, like MWM said above, what does this mean for us, right now, today? What do we do, once we know and learn this about our precious adult children? We have to learn to let them go. It is the hardest work of our lives. We will trip, stumble, back up and fall many times on this journey because it is counter-intuitive. What we have to learn to do goes against all we ever knew or believed in. We thought love would conquer all.

    Not addiction. It is a 40-foot-tall monster that mows down everybody and everything in its path. It is relentless and it is pure evil, and they can't help having the disease of addiction. But they can decide to get help for it, or they can continue on in its grip for as long as they can.

    It is often said that addiction ends in one of three places if left untreated: jail, institutions or death. I believe this is true.

    You will have to let how to stop enabling your son, how to stop the flow of money, how to set healthy boundaries, how to detach from his behavior with love, how to accept what is, today, and how to love him during all of this, and how to keep living your own life, despite it all. And you CAN do this. You really can.

    I know right now all you want is an answer to this question: How do I make my son stop this?

    And I am so so sorry to say that the answer is this: There is no way for you to make him stop, no matter what you try.

    So, if you can start to accept that this is true, then you can start the long, long road of YOU. While still loving him and standing back and standing down, waiting for him to get sick and tired enough.

    Warm hugs. Please keep posting. We are here for you. We understand. We really do.
  6. toughlovin

    toughlovin Well-Known Member

    Hi.... I feel for you so much as I have been where you are. You are doing all the right things. Drug use by our kids does terrible things really.....it can make a child who was difficult growing up totally impossible to be with. My son is now 22 but we have been going through this for years and years and also had to kick our son out when he was 18..... and part of what kept me strong was I had a younger daughter to protect. And you do need to protect your younger son from all the chaos that happens when your drug using adult lives there. So yes you are doing the right thing by not letting him come back to the house. If he comes definitely call the police!

    Our stand with our son has always been we will help you when you want help, and not help you when you don't. My son has been homeless (that was the worst for me), been in jail and been in numerous rehabs. I think he learns a little bit each time but it seems to be a slow process for him.

    At this point he is involved in drug court which although that is one reason he has been in jail, they are also working hard to keep finding him help so it is no longer on us to find him the help which has been a godsend.

    Just be prepared that if your son ends up homeless, or even if not if he keeps using, he will probably end up getting in trouble with the legal system..... and that is on him. And although the legal system has many many flaws sometimes it helps and it does start to hold them accountable (although it took many arrests with my son for it to finally do that).

    Keep posting. Oh and I second the value of alanon meetings. I found a great meeting for parents that has been absolutely wonderful support for me.


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  7. So sad

    So sad New Member

    Child of mine,
  8. So sad

    So sad New Member

    Tough lovin, I have told him exactly what you said we will help him when he decides he needs help but not until then. That is killing me, I'm a fixer but evidently not a very good one. I have just got to step back from the situation and take a breath and try to regroup. I think I will try an alanon meeting I found one here where we live this coming Tuesday. I know what we are doing now is the right thing but it's hard. All the stories I have read here break my heart. I have advised all of our families the situation, which is hard for everyone to believe. We've done s good job at hiding all the madness. Thanks again for your advice! I'll keep y'all posted.
  9. toughlovin

    toughlovin Well-Known Member

    The problem is not that you are not a good enough fixer, it is that it is not your problem to solve! Hard for us fixing mothers to take in but it's true...and I think it takes them a while to realize its not our problem to solve either!

    I know it's really hard right now but as you learn to let go and to take care of yourself it does get easier. I still think about my son son a lot but except in moments of crisis I am not only thinking about him anymore....and I am enjoying my life and doing things I enjoy and am much happier.


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  10. ForeverSpring

    ForeverSpring Well-Known Member

    So Sad, I'm sorry about your father. How horrible for all of you, including your difficult child, especially if they were close.There are often reasons our drug using adult childern can look back on and say, "I started because..." and some are really horrific situations, such as yours. Let me share, since you did, that my daughter also started weed at twelve. I didn't even know, at the time, that kids used weed at twelve. Color me naive as a blushing bride!

    My daughter had gone through a lot. At eight years old she was brutally sexually assaulted by a grown man she didn't know at a friend's house. He was drunk. For some reason, that still puzzles me and makes me feel guilty, she didn't tell us it happened until she was fourteen, after the drugs started. When asked why she didn't tell, she said, "I was ashamed. He said it was my fault and that he'd kill me and my family if I told." Typical crazy pervert's words to a little girl. Makes me ill every time I think of it. On top of that, my husband and I divorced and we moved her out of state and she was very shy. Nobody spoke to her for weeks, until the "bad" kids, for lack of a better word, saw her and decided to befriend her. One thing about the drug users and troubled crowd...they are friendlier and more accepting than other kids, who are busy doing their teen thing. My daughter desperately wanted friends so she joined them. Showing how sad society is, she became one of the most popular kids at school and other kids envied her because boys loved her. She was adopted from Korea (another challenge) and looked exactly like your stereotypical little China doll that boys seem to love Once she started u sing speed, she became skinny and boys loved her even more.

    Now that she is clean, she tells me her very main reason for the drugs was just to make friends as nobody would speak to the new kid on the block. She was not trying to rebel or leave society or screw us (her parents)...it was all about just getting some peer attention. She denies the rape as the reason, as the lifestyle put her at more risk for more rapes, she says. But she did not cooperate with counseling and a stint in a psychiatric hospital after pulling a knife on herself was a joke. Because she tested negative for drugs they told us she didn't have a drug problem even though she told them she did. It's insane.

    So now what? Horrible things happened that preceded the drug use. Would they have used drugs without the event(s)? We will never know because they happened. And for our grown children to have a decent life, no matter why they first started using drugs and no matter what horrible things they will need to work out after the drugs are gone, they still need to first stop t he drug use. I feel for what happened to your son and my daughter. They are real and hurt. But our children chose very self-destructive ways of dealing with these events, even though both of us were very willing to help them in any way they wanted. And they knew it.

    I personally feel you have the right instincts and are on the right path. Sometimes doing nothing for somebody helps more than trying to fix another person, which can't be done. I sort of felt that if my daughter was comfortable and warm and fuzzy while using heavy drugs, stealing, lying, sneaking out at night, getting friendly with the police, being on parole twice...well, I felt that making her life comfy cozy was the worst thing I could do to help her. Not to mention, I have a soft heart and would sometimes give in to her demands if she was living with me. So we asked her to leave and that's when she changed. She did have a place to stay and she got to leave the state (I feel this was a huge plus) but she was hardly coddled and loved on. She had to work without having a car, pay rent, help clean the house, cook dinner, and not even light up one cigarette because the brother she was staying with HATED drugs and was hardcore about anything to do with drugs and would have thrown her out on her tail if she had broken any rule he'd set down...even one time. And unlike us, he had no pity and the fact that she had no car in a rather big neighborhood was no excuse to him for her not to work. So she walked to and from work and she listened to him because she knew he meant everything he said. He wasn't very nice to her when she was there and she was limited to the basement except for meals and chores. She had time to think about her life and decided to turn it around. She is doing very well ten years after.

    Well, that's my story. I wanted you to know that it's not a total 100% rule, but common for some event or several to perpetrate drug use. But it still has to be stopped, and the only one who can stop it is the user himself/herself. Hugs again for your hurting mommy heart. This is brutal, but we can get through it. We can't fix them, but we can fix us. And maybe, in doing so, that helps them.
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2014
  11. pasajes4

    pasajes4 Well-Known Member

    I will offer you a huge HUG for your hurting mommy heart. I will chime in on AL-Anon. I joined a parents group and it has helped me a great deal. I have 3 active addicts in my life ( mother and 2 sons) one of them is locked up, but still has an addicts mentality.

    I am happy that you found us. There are many wise warriors on this site.
  12. So sad

    So sad New Member

    MidwestMom, What a terrible thing to happen to your daughter, words can't express the pain I felt reading that story. I am so glad that she is clean now and doing well. Prayers for you and your family to continue doing so well, so many stories I have read don't end that way. Thank you for sharing I guess everyone is going through something or has gone thru it but it's so nice to receive support from people who actually understand. Thanks Again!
  13. toughlovin

    toughlovin Well-Known Member

    And many of our stories have not ended yet.... I am one whose son has been on the streets, lived in tough situations, been in jail and it still hasnt been enough to totally turn things around. So for some it takes a while to get there..... but just because he isnt totally there yet doesnt mean he wont get there. I think he is closer at the moment than he has been in a while.

    It really is a process.

    I have met some people in my life.... and several through my job.... who have been serious addicts and have turned things around. One family friend was a heroin addict for 27 years before he got clean.... but he got clean and gave support and help back to many addicts including my son. So it can and does happen and I always try to keep that in mind.

    I think one thing that is important is to let go of the outcome of any one situation. I know I can no longer base my happiness on hoping my son will turn things around.... because my hope keeps getting dashed. I need to try and stay positive and believe in him, but I cant base my happiness on the outcome. It will be whatever it is.


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  14. Nancy

    Nancy Well-Known Member Staff Member

    So sad, welcome. My experience was very much like yours. It began years ago, my daughter was always a difficult child, but escalated when she entered high school and began drinking and smoking pot and came to a head when she graduated high school and started college and was suspended by the second month for drugs/alcohol. She went through residential treatment, outpatient, sober houses and living with addict friends. Through it all we had to set our boundaries and stick to them. I missed her terribly but I did not miss the drugs, drinking, anger, violence and total lack of respect. She is now 23 and is living with her boyfriend and has a decent job and we are rebuilding our relationship.

    You have some tough years ahead, I wouldn't go back to them for anything in the world. You are doing the best thing you can right now by seeing a counselor yourself. It is very sad when we see them throwing away a college opportunity for instant gratification. My difficult child now regrets her choices but there is no going back, only moving forward.
  15. So sad

    So sad New Member

    Thank you all for all your words of wisdom, advice, and support. I appreciate everyone taking time out to respond to my post. I have felt much better after getting all of this off my chest, I know there will be a lot of ups and downs from here on out but I've got all of you and for that I am sincerely thankful :cheerful: I sent this bible verse to my son yesterday Jeremiah 29:11
    For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.
    He thanked me
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  16. ForeverSpring

    ForeverSpring Well-Known Member

    SoSad, thank you so much. It IS great to have support and, trust me, all of us here have been through the mill. My daughter was not my only problem and I still have a problem who is 36. But if we all stick together, cyber-hold-hands :), and answer each other's calls for advice, even help, we can help one another do better and exchange ideas. And we are always here for you. The board is here 24/7 and doesn't even close on Christmas so we are basically very easily accessible and we have a great group of warrior moms.
  17. So sad

    So sad New Member

    So my husband and I went to therapy this morning. I went mostly to find out what to do next if my son decides he wants to get clean and we did get a few answers. We are going to an al-anon meeting tonight and see how that goes, I'm a little on the fence just because I have always been so private but who knows I might be sharing it all before it's over.
    My son is still living with his girlfriend and her parents, although her dad is in the hospital but will be getting out next week. I really think that's when his party is going to end for him and he will be homeless. Maybe that will scare him into reality....I hope so. He has texted everyday, so I do know he's ok and that does give me a little piece of mind. One day at a time.