how to prepare for difficult child to come out of rehab?

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by jmama45, Dec 30, 2007.

  1. jmama45

    jmama45 New Member

    If you have been following my other post you know we signed difficult child into a 30 day treatment, jail was the other option.

    Please keep in mind we just found out about the addiction 2 weeks ago and he admits to it and wants to start a new life. This isn't anything we have been through with him before. He has told us what friends he has been doing this with and what old friends are doing it. As far as I can tell, he admits to everything he has done, he doesn't seem to be hiding anything.

    Since we kicked him out 6 yrs ago, he stayed distant, not gone just distant. That changed when he had a baby in Sept. I then got to know his girlfriend and have a good open relationship with her and am very involved with my gd. girlfriend needs support, raising her 6 yr old son and new baby alone. Her parents are both alcohlics and do not assist her too much. The sons father has him half the week, I have the baby once a week overnight. If I didn't work, I could do more. I am a 41 yr old gm, and still raising my daughter, I have a lot of years left to work.

    Ok so difficult child has 2 weeks left. He is looking into an outpatient program and is working with a counselor that he admires. He has told me about the guy and that he looks up to him, that he is 21 yrs recovered and difficult child said his story is the same as his and he really sees himself in the guy. He said he has learned a lot in his classes. He said the counselor is going to make calls for him to get him into a place as an outpatient.

    I am unsure if this is good for him, but we know it is out of my hands. difficult child did once mention coming home here, but I am not sure he is still thinking that. I am afraid to ask LOL he has 2 weeks and I do not want to get all concerned if he changes the plan. BUT I do know I am 45 mins away from his girlfriend and daughter and I know he doesn't think he can go without seeing the baby everyday. girlfriend mentioned he said that to her. I do not know how to tell him that he lost the privilage of seeing her everyday when he chose this path. He has to earn that back. I don't know what the court will do, but assume they will go with his outpatient plan, probation and drug testing.

    He doesn't have anywhere else to go that can support his recovery but here. His father's isn't a good place for him at all. No where else to go that is of support. We can offer him support, but will only do so with rules and conditions. Like school, work, clean and so on. He will have no car so it will strain my life to drive him to these meetings and such. I am willing, but only if he is 1000000000000 % serious of changing. He hasn't asked for anything in 6 years, so coming here would be to him, a loss of pride. If he does want to do that, then it tells me he is doing it with the intention of change all around. He knows we kicked him out at 17 for weed and would do it at 22 for this stuff in a heart beat.

    So assuming this goes this way... and he comes here. Any suggestions on how to prepare for that?

    I work 3rd shift and sleep during the day. ANd daughter and I go to the gym everyday too. We have a routine I do not want to change on daughter, I dont want her to resent difficult child because her life had to change so much, ya know. husband works 1st and stays late all the time as they are busy at his job, somedays he is gone 630am-10pm. daughter is 14 and in school all day. So how does this effect difficult child and his needs?

    Anyone here been through this? Any advice on how to prepare and handle what difficult child's needs will be. Do we have to babysit him, can he be left alone? How do we support him, help him but not enable him?

    I am thinking difficult child will be busy with meetings, school, and work. Seeing his daughter when we can get her here, maybe 2-3 times a week. I have her one overnight every week and maybe girlfriend can bring her here another day for a visit. I do not want them to be together everyday, as I know he needs time to get his life together before they get into anything that serious again. She agrees. He has a lot of proving to do to us all.

    I cant get to any support meetings... none close by, not much time either. Any good books on dealing with addicts?

    When do I approach the subject of him living here? Is he ready at 2 weeks? Do I write about it in a letter? I just don't know what he can manage to grasp as of now, without having his full attention and seeing his reaction.

    I am thinking a good talk with husband first. Then us two with girlfriend, see if she is on board with what we expect. Then telling difficult child this is our conditions. Sound right?

    Any advice will be good. Thanks.
  2. meowbunny

    meowbunny New Member

    I think I'd let your son broach the subject of coming home first. Tell him your hesitations and ask him for help in resolving some of the problems. Is the outpatient close to you? What hours would he have to be there and would it be every day, weekly, or what?

    I'm sure others will come along with more experience on this. I hope you get some answers.
  3. saving grace

    saving grace New Member

    Jmama, hmmmm How do I say this?? It is very normal that your are anticipating his release and your anxiety is very normal as well. BUT... step back and look at all the worry you have and all the energy you are putting into just the thought of him being there, it doesnt compare to what you will feel and experience once he is there.
    This will be a HUGE commtitment from you.

    Let him make his own decisions, I would NOT approach him, he needs to figure it out for himself. IF you go to him it may just put the "easy way" out into his mind and he will go for it. If he is not used to asking you for help then it will be good for him and his "ego" if he has to. And it will be one step closer to you knowing that he is serious.

    With that said... He and only HE is responsible for himself. YOU set your rules, write them down have him sign it. Write down exactly what you expect. Your other child's life should not suffer at all. He must find his own way to treatment, he must adhere to your rules. He must work stay clean etc...

    You will worry, you should lock up ALL valuables, you should not trust what he says until he PROVES he deserves it. Just because he says he admires his counseler and likes his classes and wants to change doesnt mean when outside he will have the strentgh to do it. You say this is his first rehab? Right now he wants and feels all of the things he says because he is there. When he gets out you will be amazed at how quickly they forget.
    I compare it to labor for women, when your in labor you it hurts so bad and you swear you will never do it again, then a few days then weeks later and you "forget" how much it actually hurt and you start thinking you just might have another baby but man this waking up in the middle of the night is tough so you just toy with the idea, then 6 weeks goes by and the baby is sleeping through the night and taking two 3 hour naps a day and you think Man this is easy I could do it again and then you start planning your next baby, next thing you know your pregnant but you never really thought of hard it will be with two babies,

    I know I sound like a loony but that is how I make sense of it. They "forget" how bad it was and each time they relapse it only gets harder.

    Decide what works for you. Talk to husband and your son thats home and decide what works for them.
    Then if difficult child comes to your for help tell him the plan and if he agrees then start your journey but it will not be easy.

  4. jbrain

    jbrain Member

    you don't sound loony! Your example was great! Jmama, my dtr was in 3 rehabs and each time she sure did talk the talk while she was there. She was underage so we had to let her come home when she was released and each time she relapsed despite her great intentions. I so agree with the other posters here--let him come to you, don't make it easy for him.

    We too had a younger dtr and it did not work out having difficult child 1 come home after these rehab stints--it really upset her to have her sister living with us and disrupting things and just the anxiety her being at home caused everyone was very hard on her. I can't imagine that having him home after all these years won't affect her, no matter how hard you try to keep things normal.

    So, I guess this isn't very encouraging but if there is any way he can not come to your house I think it is for the best. I have a feeling that any way you help him will end up being enabling rather than truly helpful to his recovery. You can't take on the responsibility of him staying clean, only he can do that. I think in another post you said he said something like he would need to be watched--if that is his mindset he is not dedicated to his recovery. It is not your responsibility to watch him.

    Let us know how things go, thinking of you, sorry you are in this position,
  5. HereWeGoAgain

    HereWeGoAgain Grandpa

    I also would say to let him come to you about living at your house. Do certainly discuss it with husband so you're both on the same page when and if he does broach the subject.

    Be prepared for a huge impact, especially the transportation issues with him not driving and picking up/taking back your granddaughter several times a week. It will inevitably affect your relationship with husband and daughter in a major way, with him having been out of the home for so long.

    Best wishes, and we're pulling for you and difficult child.
  6. jmama45

    jmama45 New Member

    Thanks everyone! I know I need to step back, but my planning nature always gets me. I am very prepared for things, I am planned and know what I need to do, you know. So to have this uncertain situation, makes me nuts! I also do not want to find out when he walks out of court that he is coming home that day, ya know. He cant stay with girlfriend and I know of no where else he can go. ALL his crowd are druggies.

    But I will let it be for now. I will try I guess. It would disrupt our lives here sooo much, its not fair to any of us, so I do not take it lightly.
  7. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    in my opinion (dealing with my drug addict daughter) IF he decides to come home, I wouldn't put myself out like you plan. Why turn your life upside down for a grown man who has never kept his promises? in my opinion it will mean more to him if he has to walk or take public trans or cabs to his meetings. You should not have to drive a man his age to his meetings. It means more when he has to get there on his own and you can also see how committed he is to changing. I'd certainly lock everything up. He has violated your trust and needs at least a year of committed recovery to earn your trust back. I would institute a zero-tolerance rule. One slip or any bad impact to your other child and he leaves again. It isn't support that he needs, in my opinion. It's internal motivation, which often happens once the person HAS nowhere to turn. You son is going to have to deal with his girlfriend. Likewise, he has the power to make friends who are not using drugs, especially if he is attending N/A. My daughter had to drop all her friends to get clean. But it had to be HER decision. I can't emphasize enough that THERE IS NOTHING YOU CAN DO to help him stay straight. It has to be a deep, ingrained commitment on his part and that includes a conscience choice to distance himself from his old crowd. Ask any addict or alcoholic (they are addicts too). They needed brand new people in their lives. He can do it. My daughter did it at a much younger age than your son. Sure, she was lonely, but she knew it was her only chance. Now she has new friends and no contact with her old drug crowd. We did read that a few of them are in jail and one has passed on due to a drug overdose and she and I are grateful she made the break. But SHE had to do it. Good luck. We, as parents, always want to make it better. It's hard to admit that we can't...(((hugs)))
  8. standswithcourage

    standswithcourage New Member

    I agree. My son has been in rehabs also. He is 24. Every time he got out I was terrified. It all went back to us practically being responsible for him again. I felt our home was the only place he had that someone could look out for his best interest. It was very hard for both my husband and I to take my difficult child to all the meetings, work, etc. he had to go to. He had no car or no one to take him but us. Eventually, he went back to his drug using friends. Your difficult child may not. You never know when they want to stop. Is there any other place that can help young people to be independent after they complete a 30 day rehab? A 30-day rehab was never enough for my difficult child. He needed and still needs long term.
  9. jmama45

    jmama45 New Member

    Thanks for the replies.

    Now I am faced with even more hassles! I am going to post a new post for it though... titled other family members that enable...