Just filed Criminal Charges Against Our Lying Stealing Addict Son


New Member
Sorry for the length of this…

Today without a doubt has been the hardest day of my life. Last night we found out that once again our youngest (18-year-old) son had stolen from us and was now even dealing drugs. Monetary losses are an issue but the more important things were what he took, two family heirlooms’ that are not replaceable, $1000.00 in cash and one of my handguns all which had been locked up in a safe in my bedroom. We were able to get the handgun back last night (he was still in possession of it) thank God and found out where the jewelry was pawned so we will be able to recover them. Adding salt to the injury we then found out that he had created an Uber account using one of my debit cards and over the last 3 months had almost $800.00 in charges essentially using them as his personal chauffeurs (he still does not have a driver’s license we would not allow it).

So let me give you some background: When he was 11 years old he was diagnosed as a type 1 diabetic it was found (thank God) during his football (Pee Wee) physical exam. Since that time, he had told us he felt like a freak and getting him to do his blood sugars and take his insulin properly has been an uphill battle. He has been to so many counselors I can’t remember them all, he blew them all off as easy as putting on his socks. We think this is when his drug use started (mainly Marijuana but at a very high usage), he lies so easily that I’m still astonished at myself wanting to believe what he is telling me, when I know damn well it’s a lie.

Last November he was caught by deputies driving his mom’s car at 3 AM doing 75 mph in a 45 that was a trip to see the judge and cost us a pretty dime. Later that month he was kicked out of high school a week or so later we found out that he had been stealing from us and was heavily addicted to marijuana, at the time he was still 17. We recovered what we could from the pawn shops it cost us about $2.000 because we didn’t want to charge him with a crime. We started looking for rehab facilities while he was in detox, many facilities won’t take a minor that is a type 1 diabetic, we finally found one and after 4 days of searching praying and pleading he was placed in residential rehab for 30 days.

While he was in rehab 300 miles away, we never let him feel he was alone. We visited as often as they would allow, had phone calls, we came down for every therapy session they wanted us in and never missed one. At the rehab center he was known as their “Angel” never gave them any problems he always followed the rules and for once he finally had a counselor that he connected with. He came back on Christmas Eve and we were so happy for the gift of having him home for Christmas.

Once he got home, the first 30 days all seemed better he was at home most of the time was not hanging out with the old crowd and was going to his therapy sessions and passing his drug screenings every week. After about another 30 days he got a job working at a Dunking Donuts and we were ecstatic. A week later he said that his schedule at work was conflicting with his counseling sessions (or so he said) and he asked if could cut it down to once a month, us thinking all was well, we agreed. A week later we found out that on the day he asked us, that he had been fired (still don’t know why). After viewing the messages on his phone found out that one of the store’s assistant managers was dealing drugs on the side. We then found out that he had been stealing from us again and that he was back to using Marijuana. Once this was exposed he ran away from home fearful that we were going to send him away again, we finally found him at one of his drug buddies houses after 10 days of hell. Then tried counseling again.

Since then it has been hell has now since he turned 18 gotten even worse. He refuses to do anything at home, refuses to find a job, won’t keep his room clean and leaves his needles and diabetic supplies where the little ones can get to it. So about 3 weeks ago I gave him an ultimatum either he found full time work within 30 days or I was going to kick him out of the house and he knew I meant it, he knew I had had enough.

The surprising thing is that he has 4 older siblings 2 that are handicapped and none of them ever gave us this much trouble in fact they all work and are productive.

Two Sundays ago he came into our bedroom about 1:30 AM and informed us that he had been robbed at gun point, me being the parent I am made sure he was okay and then called the Sheriff’s office and files a report while the deputies that responded were taking his statement I was able to locate his phone via GPS which the perpetrator had also taken. They caught him and he is now being charged with Armed robbery, my son was supposed to go to a deposition at the State Attorney’s office today and he never made it.

My wife and I today decided together that it was time for filing a request for an Ex-Partee order from the courts and formally charged him for stealing from us and both have been completed.

So today as our son came home after being out all night not wanting to face us for his actions and started packing is medications and things, I asked him if the night he got robbed was a drug deal gone bad, the answer was yes it was a drug deal gone bad. In the 10 minutes he was home (us waiting for deputies to arrive) not once did he apologize or show remorse for his actions, just gave excuses like owed bad people money and needed it as front money (stake) for drug dealing and kept saying I have to go. Unfortunately, the deputies never arrived. I now pray that when they do find him that he is not armed and that he doesn’t try to flee from them, making a bad situation worse.

To this moment I’ve only spoken of him however right now it’s me and my wife I’m concerned with.

I feel guilty for filing those charges and I think my wife does too. But I know we had to, once he took my handgun he crossed a line that could not be uncrossed. I have to think of all of our other family members that live in this house and everyone else outside of it.

So, if I’m doing the right thing, why do I feel like crap. I feel like I’m the one who committed the crimes. Maybe I wasn’t a good enough father, maybe if I had provided a better example for him.

I know it’s not true but non the less I still feel that way, like it’s all my fault.



Well-Known Member
He took a gun. You did the only thing. What if he shot someone? He could be in jail for life.

You feel bad because your child did bad things. You feel guilty because society still blames us for what our kids do, although it's not true and you have other kids doing well. You hurt because you still love him.

If he is getting beaten up in bad drug deals, he may actually be safer if he goes to jail. To me it sounds like he uses more than pot, which is readily available aND doesn't lead to contentious drug deals. Maybe he is dealing himself. We don't know what our adult kids do..not really..not when this kind of crime is going on.

You may have saved him. Since he was armed, you may have saved others too. You did the right thing...you had no choice

Take care and think how you may have saved him.


one day at a time
Benro, welcome to the forum.

Your story has a lot of similarities to my son's story. He stole from us, I called the police on him. He sold drugs and got caught and was convicted of two felonies. He was in jail multiple times. He smoked marijuana, drank, took pills and who knows what else. I kicked him out multiple times, he went to rehab multiple times and relapsed, we gave and gave and gave.

Please spend some time reading this site. You'll find that although the "details" are slightly different, the trajectory of the stories is just the same. Our DCs who are addicted or mentally ill usually reject help, or they take the help and then relapse, they break the law, they break our rules, they keep on and on, we do everything possible to help and manage and fix, we feel guilty and bad when we set strong boundaries and take actions to stop the insanity...and we can't change a single darn thing.

I understand that your son crossed multiple lines when he stole from you and took the handgun.

I believe you did the only thing you could do to protect yourselves, your son and other innocent people.

It's not your fault. Your son clearly has some serious problems. Whether they are "just addiction," or other mental health problems, or what, he has decided to keep on with his behavior and not seek the help that is available. Your son has been to rehab. He has heard all of the recovery methods and experienced them. While relapse is common and part of addiction, your son knows the alternatives and he's not ready to change. He's not ready for recovery.

For me, I came to the point that I was okay with my son being in jail because at least he was off the street, not lying in a ditch high or hurt, not hurting someone else, and not able to continue stealing and drinking and drugging and breaking the law even more. He was his own worst enemy during those years.

My son's downward spiral started when he was about 19 and lasted until he was about 25. He told me later he was scared straight in jail the last time (about the 9th time in jail) when his public defender told him he would be sentenced to four years in prison the next morning. My son laid awake all night and for some reason, the judge let him go the next morning and he hasn't been in trouble since that time and has been on a constant improvement path since that time.

I had to completely let go and back off for a long long time before that. We were still in contact and "friendly" but limited contact. He was homeless multiple times.

I am so sorry you and your family are having to deal with all of this. I'm sure your son's physical challenges with diabetes further complicate things. My son now has Hep C so I understand the fears with a chronic condition.

I can't take away your guilt but I will say this: Process it, feel it, grieve it, and let it go. What's done is done. You have done the best you could in almost impossible circumstances. This is a very very hard situation to navigate, watching someone you love dearly self-destruct. There is no perfect way---not even a "good way"--- to handle this type of pain and grief.

Today, my guidance for myself are these simple things: Is what I am going to say or do reasonable? Is it simple? Am I trying to control, manage or fix the other person, situation or thing? What is my business and what is not my business?

Adults have the right to live their own lives, regardless of how little sense it makes to someone else. Right now, your son is making a lot of bad decisions. This may just be the path he has to walk right now. That doesn't mean he will walk this path forever. Give it time. Stand back. Let him face the natural consequences of his choices. You can still love him and care about him even through this. You don't have to be involved with him every day. Create some space for yourselves for some rest and peace.

I promise you this: Almost nothing is an emergency.

Please keep posting here. We understand, and we care. We'll walk with you through this.


Well-Known Member
But I know we had to, once he took my handgun he crossed a line that could not be uncrossed.

I think you did the only thing you could do. When our son stole from us, we did not press charges, even though some things were not recovered. However, the minute he left our home I checked the guns and had they been gone, we would have. Truthfully, we think at least one hunting gun been pawned and recovered at some point, but we never knew. But a handgun? That would be a deal breaker...something that could not be ignored. I know how horrible and how guilty you must feel. But you did the only thing you could.


100% better than I was but not at 100% yet


I agree with Child O Mine's post 100%. We always question our decisions because they go against what we are ingrained to be normal as a parent. They also go against what worked for our "other kids".

Don't be so hard on yourself. You did the right thing. Your son has to feel the consequences of his poor choices.

It is so hard when they are minors to do this - that is when my son started going off the rails. I think the sooner they have to feel consequences the better; it seems to be the case as shown by the parents on this forum and that's also what the "experts" say. Sure it's the hardest thing you'll ever have to do. The longer you try to protect him, the longer you'll be in that role.

This whole journey is just heartbreaking and scary for all of us. Keep posting here and reading other's posts. It does help and gives us all strength to know we are not dealing with this alone.

Tanya M

Living with an attitude of gratitude
Staff member
Hi Benro,

I'm glad you found us here and I'm so sorry you had to.
You will find that your story is a familiar one here.

I too have a son that stole from us many times and I also had to call the police more than a few times for stealing and also for have drugs in our home.

I feel guilty for filing those charges and I think my wife does too. But I know we had to, once he took my handgun he crossed a line that could not be uncrossed. I have to think of all of our other family members that live in this house and everyone else outside of it.
While I do understand those feelings of guilt, you have nothing to feel guilty about. This was not him slipping a $20 out of your wallet, he stole a gun and precious family heirlooms. This is what drugs (even pot) can do to our kids, they lose all regard for us the parents and think only of themselves and how they will get money to buy their drugs.

So, if I’m doing the right thing, why do I feel like crap. I feel like I’m the one who committed the crimes. Maybe I wasn’t a good enough father, maybe if I had provided a better example for him.
Do not for one minute think that you are not doing the right thing. Your son just like mine cannot be allowed to get away with treating their families this way. This is nothing you did or didn't do as a parent. One thing I have learned from this site is the parents who come here love their kids deeply and we hurt for them. We are all desperately searching for a magic answer to fix what has gone so wrong. Our kids for whatever reasons have made some really bad choices and that is on them not on us.
You can drive yourself crazy with the 'woulda - shoulda's'

There is a very good article at the top of the PE forum on detachment. Please take some time to read it.

You are not alone in this. Stay close to this site and you will find much needed support.



He has chosen criminal behavior over all else. You had no choice but to allow him to suffer for his crimes...at some point it is going to come to a head.

He was putting his family in danger living there. He can get help....he can change.

You can pray for him, love and support him when he's ready for help.

Take care of both of you...go to alanon, therapy...something that you will realize...you are not alone.

None of us had children to think it would come to what it has.



New Member
Thank you all for your posts, it helps to no we are not alone.

Today his warrant goes active and I pray to God that when they find him he is not armed and doesn't resist or gets hurt. I also pray for the officers and hope they don't get hurt either. The Judge has ordered a hearing for his Ex-Partee order (Marchman act in Florida) a week and a half from today which is separate from his criminal charges. It's now in God's merciful hands I hope and pray for a good outcome for my son but brace for the worst.

I know we are not alone in this and that other families have gone through this and there more coming that will go through it. When I saw other people going through it, I'd tell them "Just be strong" if not directly then to myself they have to stay strong. Right now I feel drained and weak as a puppy, that has never happened to me and I'm scared.

We had been planning a camping trip for months now it was suppose to be this weekend with a large group of friends, my wife and I decided yesterday not to go, now we have reconsidered and are going to go. Yet I still somewhat feel we need to be here at home. I don't even know what to think anymore.

Again, thank you all for your posts although I cried my eyes out through most they did help, thank you...

I wish you all the best.


Go do normal things....there is nothing you can do being miserable.

It is hard..you will always be thinking about him...but isolation is not the answer....let others love on you.



Well-Known Member
It won't help your son one bit if you don't go and live life as normal. I personally think it's best to keep going, especially when you are most prone to isolate and worry. We need to go on.


Well-Known Member
he had told us he felt like a freak and getting him to do his blood sugars and take his
Ben. I agree with everybody else. Your response was the only responsible option. Like others our own situation has similar elements but I want to comment upon the pressures that come from a diagnosis while quite young of a serious chronic illness. Just like did you we found out about my son's illness by accident when he donated blood for extra credit in a class. He was 19 and learned that he had had chronic hepatitis since birth that was never detected nor treated. (He is adopted.) When his condition worsened is when our problems came to a head. From stability as a child and young teen he became volatile, aggressive, self-conscious, unmotivated, etc. That I am aware of he did not deal drugs but he was homeless for a number of years.

The marijuana, lying, lack of motivation, aggression--what can I say? All of it the same. Plus more. Years of homelessness.

My son will be 28 in a few weeks. The past year he is systematically improved and is motivated to take responsibility for himself but it is not all uphill. He is in residential treatment now for mental illness (and marijuana.)

None of us here really knows the right or wrong thing to do in each situation (especially our own). In cases like ours where our children's non-compliance with essential treatment to keep them alive makes it particularly hard for us as parents to respond in ways that support them to grow.

In some ways the fact that your own situation was so black and white makes it easier not harder. A gun? What in the world else could you have done? There was no wiggle room. As I see it where were your options. It was not only that the lives of others were at stake. Your other kids, you, your entire lives--financial consequences. But for him. He was as if begging you to set a limit. To step in. You had to.

That is what I think. There was no other possible response by you. Not one that I can see.

Tanya M

Living with an attitude of gratitude
Staff member
I think it will be good for you to go on the camping trip. It will offer you a chance to catch your breath and to just relax. I know that's easier said than done to relax but do try and enjoy being away from the drama.

One thing my husband and I used to do that really helped us was to take long drives on the weekend. Our one rule was that we did not discuss our son. It allowed us time to just be together, to reconnect and to recharge.
I know you have other children so just taking off for a drive may not work but please do try and find something that you and your wife can do that is just the two of you. Even if it's just taking a walk around the block or going to a movie.

When I was dealing with my son's chaos on a day to day basis the stress was unbearable. I was constantly having to leave work because of the phone calls I would get from the school telling me my son was truant again. When I would turn onto my street I would get sick to my stomach with the anticipation of what I would find at home. My son was great at ransacking our house, breaking things, punching holes in the wall. The worst one was coming home to find he had taken a hammer to beat a hole a foot in diameter in our bedroom door so he could get in. The lock we put on the door was our attempt to keep him out.

When I look back to those years of constant stress I wonder how I survived and maintained my sanity. I truly believe we are stronger than we can give ourselves credit for. I am far on the other side of dealing with that day to day stress. My son is now 34 and still does not have his life together but it's his life. I had to come to a place where I moved on and had to start living my own life.
We each come to that place in our own time. I spent many years trying to "help" my son but all I was doing was enabling him. I wanted him to change. I wanted him to change into what I wanted, what I thought he should be. That was not what my son wanted. He wanted to live his life on his terms and that is what he has been doing. I do not like the life he has chosen but so be it, it's his life to live.

I wish no parent had to deal with what we on this site have dealt with. I am grateful for this site and what it offers, I just wish I would have found it 15 years ago.

The best advice I can offer is to take care of you and your marriage. It's okay to live your life and it's okay to be happy. If your son starts trying to guilt into bailing him out, don't buy into it. Be prepared for the begging, crying and pleading, the promises that he will do better if you only do what he wants.
Develop a really thick skin because if he's pulling his plays out of the "difficult child handbook" he will ramp it up. These kids somehow know that they can get to us via our emotions.

Stay close to this site. It's a great place to come and vent and no one will ever judge you.
You did the right thing. We also just filed charges against after discovering our 20 yr old son stole 1000 dollars from us. It is so hard to watch our children self destruct, but experiencing the full consequences of their actions is their best chance of waking up to the reality of their choices and just maybe considering a different path. But even if that never happens, I felt like I had to press charges for me, for my own well being. It was my way of declaring NO MORE. I will not be treated like that. I will not allow him to throw the love and trust we have shown him in my face. We are $500 overdrawn while we work this out with our bank and the anger keeps me clear. I know the guilt will slowly creep back in but I am determined to remind myself the HE did this to himself, with no thoughts of remorse at taking needed money from his own family. Stay strong!! You are not alone.


New Member
God Bless you Tanya and Copabanna, for taking in someone else's child and trying to do good by them and for your kind words.

We are the ones pressing the charges so I don't see us bailing him out. My wife and I have already decided he can't come back here. All of our other children are grown and he is 18 now. It's hard for me because I still want to protect him, but I know if I give in we are just going to go through it again and my wife and I don't want that. We need peace in our home once again.

We both do realize there really was no choice here but it does help hearing other parents in the same situation agree that we are doing the right thing and that there was no other appropriate course of action.

His older sister lives with us with her two daughters, she has own issues but is working and doing well. It would not be safe for him to return here not with two little ones living here. He may be able to visit (maybe) but he not coming back to live here. Although, I can just see myself eating those words as I've done more crying over the 2 days than I have over my entire life and I'm 53 and my emotions are a mess I go from extremely sad to, extremely angry at him then at myself then frustrated or just plain lost . My wife and I have always maintained a stable home until he started all this crap and frankly we want it back, if not completely some semblance of it. I always told my kids that they needed to be grateful that we didn't have any issues like these and I was grateful, never in a million years did I think we would be living through it.

I'll stay close, I currently with the exception of my wife I have nothing else. she going through it with me and don't want to burden her to much, I need to be there for her, I've always been her rock and need to continue doing so.

Thank you all


New Member
Night Owl Mama, I know we are doing the right thing and I've always told my kids you always do the right thing no matter how hard, difficult or unpopular it is.
Doing the right thing usually is not easy and is generally very difficult but it is the right thing to do. I just pray God gives me enough strength to bear it all.

This time doing the right thing goes against every natural instinct I have as a father which is to nurture and protect my children. But we are sticking to it, We must do it, even tho it breaks our hearts in the process, it is the right thing...
Hugs. It is so hard to look back and wonder why and what if...I try not to let myself though because nothing but heartache comes of it. My difficult child is my oldest and I have five other children and one on the way. It is hard to continue with joy on my parenting journey with my others because I know now so much is out of our hands with how kids turn out. It is true, raw, real grief we must go through with these difficult adult children. It is a roller coaster ride of emotions to be sure!


New Member
I cried on all three court visits to file a restraining order against our oldest son.

We still cry thinking about him out there homeless, mentally ill, and on drugs. We wait for the doorbell to ring letting us know that our son is either dead or has killed someone.

We feel bad like you do. It's because it's not part of the parenting contract we enter into. They're not supposed to violate our houses, persons, trust, etc and we're not supposed to kick them out or press charges against them. It goes against every single parenting urge we have that says we need to protect them from all the bad in the world.

Having said that, we do what we have to in order to 1. not enable horrible behavior and 2. keep our own sanity.

I'm sorry and I empathize. It's hard.

A dad

Active Member
I am sorry for what you are gong trough. Its terrible that the deputies did not investigate and probably never will. We had a similar post about a parent pressing charges and yet even 4 months later they still did not investigate. But then again she called the police for her son stealing from a store so probably the store owner decided not to press charges or denied what happened.


Active Member
benro, I'm sorry for what you are going through. Im sorry for what we all have gone through, and continue to go through! I commend you for your strength. Maybe if he is held accountable he might turn things around. Never in my wildest nightmares did i ever expect to have to go through the things my husband and i have had to endure...courts, jail visits, thievery lies (oh the lies) each and every time feeling as if another part of my heart is being ripped out...yet we go on. This site and groups like NARANON and ALANON these are life lines to keep us afloat on these tumultuous seas that we know as life with a difficult child! Keep reading posts to maintain strength and keep posting..it is so cathartic. Hugs to you and yours