"Mom, I can't drive home right now..."

Discussion in 'Substance Abuse' started by hearts and roses, Dec 6, 2007.

  1. hearts and roses

    hearts and roses Mind Reader

    Last night difficult child called me at 11PM (her agreed upon curfew time) and, sounding very blotto, said, "Mom I can't drive home right now."

    Me: "Why not? What's wrong with you?"

    difficult child: "I took a few too many tokes."

    Me: "That's excellent. Please wait a while and then come home when you feel up to it."

    difficult child never came home last night.

    She's home now, I just called her and told her we're going to talk when I go home for lunch at Noon. I have no idea what to say to her.

    Our agreement was that she can't drive under the influence of drugs or alcohol. So, on the one hand, at least she didn't drive while stoned out of her mind. But on the other hand, she's on medications and should not be doing any drugs anyway. I think she was doing more than smoking pot - I'm sure she had been drinking as well.

    She left the house yesterday at 8:15 AM and said she was picking up some of her [unemployed] friends and they were all going job hunting together. I told her most people did not dress in jeans and an oversized baggy sweatshirt or bring a posse with them to go job hunting. She rolled her eyes at me and split. Never called or responded to any of my messages. At 6PM H got a hold of her and asked where she was, what she was doing and reminded her that she needs to check in to let us know where she is. She said she was sorry and that she'd be home later. And then I got that call.

    I have many thoughts on what I want to say to her but I can't form a sentence. I think I want to print out a copy of our agreement letter and make her read it again. I want to take away her keys. H said I should not take away her keys and that whatever she's doing when she's not in the house we shouldn't nag her about - as long as she's calling home and coming home on time and not drunk or stoned while here, we should be quiet. She needs to find a job and she needs to do a lot of things, but I am at a loss as how to go about motivating her. Her main goal every single minute of every single day seems to be how soon she can be with Monkeyboy, who incidentally, is also unemployed and whose father took away his keys until he is employed. difficult child is the only one in her little gang who has a car. And now she's not employed and is running out of cash. I told H not to give her any money. He said he'd only give her money if she worked for it. As long as she has money she will drive back and forth to Monkeyboys' house, which is almost 30 miles round trip.

    I feel ill.
  2. Kjs

    Kjs Guest

    I would be very happy she called you. And very happy she chose to be safe and not drive.

    You are stuck aren't you. I think I would print out the agreement. Make sure you commend her on NOT driving. An accident/injury under the influence can mean jail time.
  3. skeeter

    skeeter New Member

    who's name is the car in and who pays the insurance?

    If it's her's - she'll be out of money soon if she doesn't get a job, so no insurance, and she should then not drive. I know, you may need to get "involved" then.

    If it's in your name, I'd say take the keys now, and give them back when she has a job.
  4. hearts and roses

    hearts and roses Mind Reader

    It is her car, she paid for it, but it's in my name and on our insurance. The plan was to have everything switched over the week between Christmas and New Years if she was continuing working. However, she's lost her job and is supposed to get a new one.

    I feel it's within my right to take her keys away since it's in my name and on my insurance and if she is engaging in drug/alcohol use, I don't want to be sued should she hurt or kill someone while driving. And she may not have driven home, but she had to drive back to her boyfriend's house from the 'party house', Know what I mean???
  5. meowbunny

    meowbunny New Member

    In other words, she did drive whle high. Yup, definitely time to take those keys. Of course, that means someone will have to take her to get job apps and for interviews and the like. If she throws too much of a hissy fit since it is her car, take her to the DMV, get your name off the title and off of your insurance now rather than waiting. Hopefully, CT requires proof of insurance before they'll give you registration and title.

    I do agree she did a good thing in calling and saying she couldn't drive while high. I know that has been a rule in this house. However, I do go a step further -- you call me and I'll happily come get you. We can pick up the car in the morning. At least then she wouldn't have the option of getting higher or driving elsewhere. There was also the rule that while there would be no consequences that evening that didn't mean there would no consequences at all. Using pot is illegal. Drinking while under 21 is illegal. If my daughter chooses to break those laws, I obviously can't stop her. I can, however, make her life extremely miserable. That would include no car, no rides except to work, to look for employment, to school. When you choose to follow the laws, I may choose to let you have a vehicle again but not before.
  6. hearts and roses

    hearts and roses Mind Reader

    I paraphrased this [hope you don't mind] and put it in an email to difficult child. When I went home at lunchtime, this is basically what I said. She tried to hide her bag so I couldn't take the keys, but she gave them to me when I asked. Then she said she couldn't even look at me! Haha. I had to go see my mom and speak with my sister anyway so I left. difficult child is so angry with me and well, that's too bad.

    I know that H will want me to give her back her keys later. I'll cross that bridge when I get to it. For now, she's stuck at home or one of her friends will have to come get her and they never do. Thanks.
  7. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    I'm with Meow. No option of staying overnight (I would have called her a cab so I didn't have to go out and she would have cleaned the house to pay me back the fare). No car. She may have paid for it, but she can't drive it without insurance and I would not help her get any AT ALL. I'd drive her, and only her, to get a job, in which she can use public transportation, a bike, or her own two feet to get there. Being soft on kids who are lazy and apathetic due to drug and alcohol use/abuse DOES NOT WORK. In fact, they like it because it enables their nonproductive lifestyle. She must have been pretty wasted to actually call you and that IS preferable to NOT calling you, but I don't see that this makes her capable of making good choices with a vehicle. Pot stays in the system a long time and, from long experience, I have learned that "I use pot" usually means "I use more than pot, but you won't blow up at me if I just say I use pot." I didn't find out until after my daughter cleaned up that she had used every drug under the sun, including a few tries of heroin, crack cocaine, and ecstacy. She ended up getting into three car accidents, however two of them were after she was tossed out of the house. Years later, after she had cleaned up her act, she was sued for $14,000 from one woman who claimed a late injury. She ended up having to dish out $7000. Her father paid it, but she has to pay him back each month, even though she's totally straight now. I don't think "the benefit of the doubt" works with these kids. I do not believe trying not to "hurt" their sensitive feelings works either. As my daughter says "Never trust a drug addict." They "play" you and do all they can to justify their drifter type lifestyle. I believe in hardball as it's the only thing they understand. If you don't cut off her driving, she may get into a horrible accident like my daughter did (actually it was three). Monkeyboy would not even be a factor--he'd be banned from the house and she'd be banned from driving to see him. We had a "Dice" (scary dude) who we didn't allow in our house. Later on, he was arrested for burglary and drugs. I suggest Tough Love. Good luck :smile:
  8. Big Bad Kitty

    Big Bad Kitty lolcat


    Ditto, ditto ditto ditto.

    I KNOW you can't trust a drug addict, because I WAS the drug addict.

    Take the keys. Or, transfer the car into her name and throw her out. But that is one heck of a huge detach all at once.
  9. jbrain

    jbrain Member

    Miwest Mom has it right! The benefit of the doubt certainly does not work with these kids--if you give an inch they take a mile. I don't give her many kudos for calling instead of driving--she still was in the wrong and she probably thinks that since she called she deserves a gold star, ignoring that she was doing something illegal and dangerous in the first place.

    If you look at the whole picture since she has moved back with you it isn't very encouraging. She is not standing on her own 2 feet, she is using you. I know because I have been there done that with my dtr so many times. She didn't quit using me til I quit helping her, period.

    Sorry, just think you have to get super tough. I know it went against the grain for me--I am a "softie" and hate conflict but dtr forced me to be tough. Any time I felt sorry for her she played it to the hilt--I really had to fight those times when I felt sorry for her because it always backfired. I dealt with her best when I was angry or numb.

    Good luck,
  10. KFld

    KFld New Member

    It does get tricky when we try to get it into their heads that they should never drink or drug and drive, then they call us to say they can't, and we question whether to give consequences. I think it's a huge difference between dealing with this with a easy child, or a difficult child.
    My easy child is going to be 18 and I have told her numerous times that I'm not stupid, I know kids her age will experiment and though I don't in any way condone it, I don't ever want her to hesitate to pick up the phone and call me or anyone else for a ride if she gets herself in a situation where she can't drive. I would much rather have her do that then get killed or kill someone else. Then I know I would be able to talk to her the next day about what she did and she would learn a lesson from it. To do this with a difficult child is almost like giving them permission to drink or drug and as long as they call and say they need a ride because we tell them to do that, they take it as permission to do it again the next time.
    You were right to take away her keys. Tell her that when the car is in her name and the insurance, she can have them back and it is her responsibility then, not yours.

    My easy child lost a 17 year old friend this summer because he drove drunk and wrapped himself around a telephone pole. Not a fun thing to deal with!!!
  11. Ephchap

    Ephchap Active Member

    Well, not driving was a good decision ... but not if she still drove - just to a different place.

    Unfortunately, I've been through the DUI's with my difficult child, so I understand how hard it is to know when to trust them again.