I need strength to stop enabling and get my drug addicted son some help

Discussion in 'Substance Abuse' started by ziggy1usa, May 30, 2012.

  1. ziggy1usa

    ziggy1usa New Member

    [h=2]I need strength to stop enabling and kick my drug addicted son out[/h]
    Hello, I am new to this forum, and have an identical situation to the previous poster with my own son with a slight twist that complicates it and I was wondering if anyone had any good advice. I took the tough love approach and kicked him out several times over the years and each time he ends up worse on his own than the previous. My son is currently living with me and full blown addiction with all of the same headaches and previous problems and nightmares previously mentioned in this post, the last time I kicked him out he ended up getting arrested about a dozen time, entered and got thrown out of scores of detoxes and eventually ended up shooting heroin in the gutter living in homeless shelters with no one. On paper he will be 22 in May, but emotionally I feel he is 14 or 15 (the age he started using drugs). I don't think based on history repeating itself that he stands a chance of surviving on the street if I throw him out again, I have tried that and I feel lucky the streets didn't take his life. - His problems I feel are now becoming my problems and this is strongly starting to effect "my" own mental health and work performance. Where do I go from here????? I feel like I am on a hamster wheel and the joke is on me.​
  2. buddy

    buddy New Member

    hi ziggie, just wanted to welcome you here. There are such kind and smart parents here....you will get lots of deeply honest stories and ideas. I am just so sorry you had to search us out. Sounds like bottom line you have a big decision to make... Will send you tons of positive energy and strength to fight for yourself!
  3. Nancy

    Nancy Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Welcome ziggy and while I am so sorry you have to be here I'm glad you found us. Many of us have been where you are at and while we don't have a lot of answers we can share our experiences with you and give you lots of support.

    I hear you when you say each time you kicked him out he got worse, but is he getting better in your home? Was he ever ordered into a treatment center through the courts as part of his many arrests? You are correct that an addict is the emotional age of when they began using drugs. Your son is not going to stop using by himself, he needs serious interventions. He either needs to hit bottom and decide that he hates his life more than he likes the drugs or he will die.

    Do you have insurance that would cover a drug treatment program for your son? Many of us on this board have had to draw the line in the sand with our difficult child's and tell them they either go for treatment or move out. It is their choice. Therefore you are not kicking him out, he is making the choice to either get help or leave. I know that is terrifying and there is the real possibility that he will die, and you will have to make peace with that. In my situation I knew that my daughter was going to die without treatment so I had to take the chance. If you do not have insurance for treatment, there are sober houses he can go to that either charge nothing or slidign fee scale. He will get treatment and attend meetings and get help, if he wants it, to learn how to live sober.

    It is not fair that your mental health and work performance ar ebeing affected. He is an adult and needs to get help for his addiction or leave. Have you ever attended a naranon meeting? You need to get some support for yourself, find other parents dealing with drug addiction so that you can get healthy and make the kind of changes needed for your son to change.

    There are other members who will be along shortly to welcome you, you are not alone anymore.

  4. toughlovin

    toughlovin Guest

    Hi Ziggy,

    First it is NOT your fault that he started using heroin, that was his choice and it was his behavior that made you kick him out... and even though he was homeless it was his decision to use heroin instead of figuring something else out.

    Have you found a good alanon group for parents or some kind of support group for parents dealing with drug addicted kids? That could be a huge help to you. It has been a tremendous help to me to find other parents in real life who know exactly what I am going through... other parents who are good people and help me see that this happens more often than you think and to people you would not expect it to happen to.

    So my question to you is will having him stay in your home help him stop using drugs? From what you have said it doesnt sound like you think it will but you are afraid if he doesnt stay with you then it will just get worse. Well the likelihood is the drug use will escalate anyway. He will not stop using until he really wants to or feels he has no other choice. As long as he has a comfortable place to stay, food to eat he will probably continue using.

    My other question is do you have any idea what precipitated him using drugs? Is he using drugs to numb other issues in his life? The answer may very well be yes. In that case he might need more help than just detox or rehab. My experience with my son (who is 20) is that rehab is not enough for him, he also has to deal with his mental health issues.... and it is hard to find good dual diagnnosis programs that deal with mental health and substance abuse in parallel... and in my opinion for some people, like my son, he won't get clean unless he is also dealing with the mental health issues.

    So the question really is does your son want help at all? Either for substance abuse or other issues? If the answer is no then there is really nothing you can do except to take care of yourself... and wait until he wants help. And it is hearbreaking and awful to be in that position... and so please take extra good care of yourself.

    I dont know how much you have read of other threads.... but I have really been there. My son has been to several rehabs, been kicked out of several sober houses (for using) and is currently in treatment for both substance abuse and mental health issues. I still think he thinks his problem is not really drugs... but is really mental health... but at least he wants help for that. Our stand is we will help him get the help when he wants it, but he can't live here and we will not support him if he is using drugs.... and we will let him be on the street. He has discovered that in fact we will and has lived for about a week on the streets 3 different times. Hardest think I have ever done... and I knew it might be he would die or most likely get into heroin. Yet I had to do that for our own sanity and for my younger daughter as well.

  5. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I dont normally post much on this forum but something about your post really struck me. I feel so very badly for you because you seem to feel you are at the mercy of your son's drug use. Its almost like you are literally stuck living your live for your son. Someone once said a family is as only as well as their sickest family member. I do think that is really true in your case, and you son is forcing you to live this nightmare.

    You havent done a profile so we dont know if you have a husband or other kids in the home. If so, what do they feel about this revolving door? Does your son have any mental illnesses he has been diagnosed with as a child or adult?

    I honestly wonder if your son realizes at some level that he is manipulating you to a degree as in, mom kicked me out so I will just show her how bad it can really get. Ha. Then she will take me back! She will see, she will have to, she wont let me die out here. I know she wont, she is my mother. Of course that plays on your guilt and it works.

    In the true sense, the real answer is to say that as long as he has the comforts of your home, any money he gets he can just use for drugs and we all know that. He isnt going to stop using until he wants to. That is just something that is true. It is true for anything. Drugs, cigarettes, overeating, anything thing that is a vice. You simply cant stop until you want to and nobody can force you or make you. It has to be that person's decision. My personal choice would be to attempt to find a rehab if you have the insurance but if you dont then he has to go. You cant have him effecting your life this way. He will find a way to live or not. If he gets picked up by the cops but so many times they will eventually hold him for longer and then he will have a place to stay and at least he will get detoxed for a time. They do have drug programs in prison if he can get sent to one of them. I know that isnt what a parent wants but sometimes that is the best choice.