I found you at the perfect time!


New Member
Hi - last night I googled "How to deal with homeless son whose life is full of drama" and found this forum. It led me directly to a thread that was exactly what I needed to read in that very moment. I instantly felt less alone and had just about every feeling and thought I've had the past year validated!

Thank you.

My son has been doing drugs since he was 13. He spent 6 months in jail when he was 17 because he stole a car. We thought that was "rock bottom" and he was made to go to rehab while in jail. He got out and things were good for a few years - he graduated from high school, got a good job that he was really good at and met a nice girl. We figured "phew! He was just experimenting and made some bad choices, but he has outgrown all of that." And then it all changed.

He got back into drugs - hard stuff this time. Lost the nice girl (after 5 years - we loved her so much!), lost the good job and the downward spiral began. More and more drugs, bouncing between living at home and living with women who would put up with him and enable him...until they wouldn't and then he'd end up homeless or back home again. While living with his last girlfriend, he od'd on opiates. He was in a coma for a week and even the doctors were not sure if he would be "all there" when he woke up as he had stopped breathing at some point, kidneys shut down, etc. But he did wake up and we were so grateful and we believed that THAT was rock bottom.

But it wasn't. From the hospital he came back to live with us and we got him into therapy, counseling, etc. The day he got out of the hospital, the police showed up and arrested him. He was charged and a year later convicted with possession and now had a felony on his record. He could not find work, he slept all day, stayed up all night and began using again in our home. We'd wake up in the morning and find him LITERALLY on the floor in the kitchen with his face in the cat dish. He made a million excuses why he could not work - and we felt so awful and blamed ourselves so much for everything that we just continued to support him and enable him and demanded that he stop using - even while we knew he was.

I became depressed. I felt like a prisoner in my own home - it was a nightmare. He briefly moved back in with the girlfriend, and that was a brief respite for about 3 months - until he got violent with her and she pressed charges and he was convicted of assault. He moved back in with us - again. This was the 5th time.

He continued to use drugs - we'd find the bongs, the "whippets", and then we found needles and knew he was back to using heroin. We never had anything missing or stolen but we did find out another woman friend of his was giving him money to buy drugs. I told my husband I could not live like this anymore and it was either HE was going to leave, or I was. We kicked out son out. We gave him 30 minutes to get his things together and leave and I handed him a paper with some phone numbers which he threw away.

The woman friend came by and picked him up.

It was the hardest thing I have ever done - but there was blessed PEACE in the house after that. 2 weeks later he showed up at our door and said he was going to move 3000 miles away. That a family member out there had offered to "help" him get clean. And he left.

That was 3 years ago this September. Nothing has changed. He went from heroin to methadone after being in the hospital AGAIN out there. Almost as soon as he got out there he found a woman and had been living with her and her children, got violent with her, and she finally kicked him out a year ago September and he began living out of a car. The entire 3 years he has been out there he has not had a job. 2 months later (in November 2014), he rolled and totaled the car. At that point he had alienated the entire family out there and they were not even speaking to him. It was cold and it was the holidays and we put him up in a hotel. He has been supported by my husband and I and an uncle now since November - hotels are freaking EXPENSIVE. But he had a million and 1 reasons why he could not work. We bought him a used clunker and within two weeks he had totaled that - so he could not work anymore. Just constant reasons why he could not work, change his life, etc.

He remained on methadone for 2 years - then decided that the people at the clinic who were trying to help him were really just drug dealers themselves, and he just quit. He got very sick (of course!!) and we got very scared. We paid for several more nights in a hotel. We finally told him no more - we can't anymore. He bought a tent and put it up in the woods.

That was Monday. Prior to all of this he had been hanging out with junkies and one particular woman who is a "lady of the night" whom he was "trying to help". He used money we sent him to buy her drugs and we also found out he is using Xanax. He told us his wallet was stolen, but "thank goodness" his ID was in his pocket not his wallet - could we send him some money via Western Union to buy food. We did. $30. This was on Wednesday. Thursday he was robbed by the woman (he kicked her out of the tent so she came back and robbed him). I don't believe his wallet was stolen - but how convenient that he had his ID so he could pick up the money we sent him.

He called me last night, freaking out as he usually does. Everything is a crisis. I told him I felt like he was manipulating me. He began crying (which just reinforced my feeling of being manipulated) and said, "omg - I can't deal with this" and hung up on me.

I just thought this is INSANE. I have been trying so hard to create a joyful life for myself. I have HAD it. That is when I googled and found this board. I read a thread that was full of moms, just like me, going through almost the exact same thing - and decided to take action.

I found all the services for housing/shelter, food, jobs and mental health right there in the area he is and texted him the addresses and phone numbers. I told him to not contact me again until he was getting the help he needed and in the programs he needed to be in.

Now, I just wait for the s*it storm - and I KNOW it will come. I'm so grateful to be here where I hope I can get the support I need to BE STRONG and not give into the crazy fear that he will die or disappear or all the other crazy fears that assail me! I am reading, praying, have an awesome support system here - but to be able to talk to other moms and share the journey is so helpful!

Thank you!


Well-Known Member
Hello Joy. While its sad that you have to be here, its a good thing you found this board. We don't have all of the answers but the support you will receive is wonderful. You did the right thing in cutting him off and going no contact. He is a grown man and needs to sort his life out. You can't do that for him, only he can. Stay strong.

And just for the record, not everyone here is a mom!

Tanya M

Living with an attitude of gratitude
Staff member
Welcome Joy,
I'm so sorry you had to find us but so glad you did. As you already know this site is full of "Warrior Parents" who have been through it all.
It sounds like you have a pretty good grip on the situation in that you know you need to detach from your son and his chaos.
Good job on sending him a list of places and telling him not to contact you until he gets the help he needs.
It may take a while for him to fully grasp that you will no longer enable him. If he anything like many of our Difficult Child's he will go to great lengths to manipulate you and try and make you feel guilty for the situation he has created for himself. Stand strong and firm and know that you did not cause this. It's obvious from your post that you have gone above and beyond to help him get his life on track. Don't let him draw you back into the chaos.
We are here for you and you are not alone. You have made some difficult decisions but it is for the best. Now it's time for you to take your life back.
I really like the name you picked.
Hang in there and keep reading and posting.

((HUGS)) to you............


Well-Known Member
Welcome Joy. I'm so very sad to hear your story, but it's very familiar to anyone who's been here long enough. Jabberwockey (affectionately referred to as "Jabber" by most folks here) is my husband. Our son has, hopefully, only dabbled with drugs, but has been out of our home since October.

You are doing exactly the right thing. Any money you give him is probably going to drugs. You have to assume that to be true. You may feel bad about cutting him off when he calls and tells you he's cold and hungry, but there are shelters and there are food pantries and soup kitchens. The homeless are entitled to food stamps. Your money isn't going to food - and how would you feel if he od'd again, knowing your money paid for the drugs? Don't put yourself thru that. You will be worried and you will be afraid and it will wear on you, wondering if he's okay...but this is what it takes.

What you've done, sending him the list, is what he needs. He has to help himself.


Well-Known Member
Welcome, Joyfullyme, so glad you found us!
OMG, what a horror story.
And I hate that he did so well for so long and had a lovely girlfriend and job and then it started over again--worse!
I have not been through this (sheesh. makes my son's pot use look pretty tame, but scary since I can see him in your son's shoes, too) but I can offer hugs and support.
You are right to take back your life.
It is gut wrenching.


Well-Known Member
Everyone gave great advice. All I have to add is not to EVER give him money. It will go for drugs. He is a serious drug addict...heroin is so hard to kick. He will do anything to get it when he is withdrawing. Nobody can do it alone...not heroin. If you want to get him something get a small gift card from a store, like Walmart, nothing of value that he can sell. Nothing he can use for drugs.
Hugs for your hurting heart.


Active Member
Many of the west coast cities, especially California, have decent services for homeless singles who want to be helped. Plus the weather on the whole is mild enough that he may not be comfortable, but there are always options available when the weather extremes get unpleasant.


Well-Known Member
Joy, there is nothing at all you can do for your son. Or I for mine.

What there is to be done, they have to do. There is a horrible helplessness and grieving that goes with the acceptance of this. But a certainty as well.

It is as if one is stripped to the bone. No skin. No muscle. No flesh. It is as if our own lives hang in the balance. And a decision must be made by us, to live, or not.

I am in this place right now.

I am seeing that I must have faith, to go forward. Faith in something larger than me. Whether it is in G-d or in nature or in life itself...that can carry me where I need to go, and can carry my son as well.

There is no other way though this, I think

I was reading today about the Malaysian Air wreckage found off Madagascar. Australian scientists over a year ago had predicted that any wreckage that existed from the supposed crash would end up right there. It did.

How did they know it would? Because powerful currents would carry it. When human hands and human will could no longer solve this mystery, it would be carried by the power of nature and the divine. I will learn to let the divine forces of life carry me and my son to where we need to go.
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It is so hard....so hard to sit there and just watch your child self-destruct. The many emotions we parents go through. I'm new here too. I have to say, reading the article on detachment was a real eye opener for me. I have told myself repeatedly the past two days:

Detaching from my child does not mean I don't love her. It means the opposite. Constantly trying to fix, rescue and continuing to enable the behaviors only imposes what "I" want her to be. How I feel she must behave, or act, or do. Ultimately that sends a message that it's not enough unless she does those things. Which then will only prompt her to continue lying and telling me what she thinks I want to hear (attempt to please me). Although I know it's out of love and concern, and simply want the best for her. A mother wanting to guide her daughter in the right direction.

On the other side, her actions towards me ARE abusive. It is not okay to treat me like this...I deserve to be treated with respect. So, by not engaging in the drama, I am sending the message that I'm not going to accept it anymore. I'm not going to allow my emotions to be controlled by her anymore. I know she intentionally manipulates me and does things solely to hurt my feelings, evoke a response, punish me. How I react, how I engage in the behavior, is in my control. Detaching is loving myself too.

I love my daughter. It is not my right to constantly tell her how to live her life. She's 20, and an adult. I know I can't do this for her. She has to decide to live differently. While I do worry she'll mistake it for me not caring, caring excessively has certainly not changed things either.

This site may very well be my saving grace!


New Member
Thank you, everyone, for your kind and supportive words! I have often thought of the money we send him being used for the very drugs that may kill him one day - I could not live with myself if that happened.

I spoke with him yesterday - I was expecting a freak out over the information I sent him. He called me and apologized for freaking out the night before and thanked me for the information. He was at DSHS at the moment getting an ebt card. He is on a wait list for a 5 day Detox center and should hear in a day or two when to go. It is a start. I am cautious but to be 100% honest - not overly hopeful. I WANT him to succeed in beating this for him AND for me.

I read the article on Detaching and I see myself in several of those statements. I read on here somewhere (may have been in the Detachment Article) the words and I wrote them down to say to myself over and over again: I didn't cause it. I can't control it. I can't cure it. Stay out of the way - HE has to change it.

I begin college in a few weeks - I am beginning for the first time. It is important to me and I am excited. I also know that in the past, I have set aside my own stuff to deal with his crisis and drama. I sometimes just want all of this to go away - and I struggle with the guilt of that. Going to school is SO important to me and I want to be able to focus on it and do it well. THIS will be my challenge - but also my opportunity to truly detach from his life so I can live mine. I am praying for strength and courage for both him and I! =)

Thanks again, everyone!


Active Member
I think your attitude is really on the right track-you have had a bellyful of your son's behavior and are going to focus more on yourself and what you need and where you are going. Please make sure it stays that way-these DCs are usually pretty resourceful and if your son is like mine, he will take from any and everyone until they have nothing left to give-and think nothing of it, just move on to the next person.

So do your very best not to be the person who finds they have NOTHING left to give to the people who REALLY will appreciate all your generosity, love and other good qualities. It's very hard when it's your child, but these DCs don't treat US like we are loving parents-why should we treat THEM as if they were loving children?

Stay strong!