Need your advice on this..

Discussion in 'Substance Abuse' started by tryingtobestrong, Dec 27, 2018.

  1. So, as I posted on Christmas my son finally went into a sober living home about 2 weeks ago. He had relapsed and was really bad. Started doing more than booze, blew through so much money and was missing work. Filed FMLA and asked us to come out to help him get into a sober living place, plus pack his belongings, storage unit it, break the lease, etc. It was not a cheap trip. However, he moved to sober living and started IOP there... However, it is out of network with our insurance so it is a $5000 bill on top of everything else.
    So, he was paying his rent at the apartment but was draining his accounts the last few weeks due to his relapse.
    He has his credit cards so high and the interest rate is killing him because the interest each month is all he can pay. So, he is to pay his own sober living rent which is $1500 a month because we just can't do anymore.
    He said today how he doesn't know if he can make it for the next month. He is working but with doing the IOP can't get the overtime because he has that 3 nights a week. He has other bills like student loans and credit cards. He said he was one of the only ones in the "house" that pays the rent all of the others parents pay it for them... Seriously his rent is double my mortgage. I can't take on any more. With the break the lease fee of $3000 plus the IOP, the traveling expenses, and all of the past 5months, we are drained.
    He is still able to get tattoos.... I so want to ask how he is affording them but is crying he can't pay his rent in a few weeks? BUT I don't want to cause him more stress that he leaves sober living. If he were to do that he would be homeless. His rent at his old apartment was the same as this so I am not sure why he is having such a hard time. I guess because he blew all of his savings on booze/drugs prior to moving into sober living.
    So, what would you all do? Would you help him just a little even though you are drained yourself. We have a home equity loan that we keep putting this on because we don't have the cash to just pay it out.
    I know how much he makes and I know he only has a little left after paying the rent so trying to put more on his credit cards isn't going to happen.
  2. elizabrary

    elizabrary Active Member

    I wouldn't help him. in my opinion this is one of those you made your bed, you lie in it moments. If he has money for tattoos then he he chooses that over rent. Tattoos are not cheap. Again, how I remind myself of what is enabling is asking if I am doing something for an adult that they are CAPABLE of doing for themselves. He's obviously capable of this. It might not be easy, but he can figure it out. He can forbear his student loans and if he calls the credit card companies and explains his situation they will most likely work with him. You've done a lot for him already. I think it's time to let him figure his way out of his own messes.
  3. ForeverSpring

    ForeverSpring Well-Known Member

    I would not and did not help my daughter. Wouldnt even consider it if it financially drained ME and he is using drugs. I was not so nice. I wanted it to be so miserable for her that she quit.

    By age 19 she had been kicked out. By 20 she had quit. For her rent money, crappy living conditions, walking to and from work in.the Chicago cold, nothing from us or her brother whom she was living with and he was making tough demands....she couldnt light up one cigarette or he would throw her out.... this hard life encouraged her to quit, even cigarettes.

    Although it doesnt work for all, I totally believe that for drug addicts, even if they also have anxiety or depression, tough love, strong boundaries and no money from us is the ONLY chance.

    I dont think helping them until we are dead or broke ever works. Your son is showing no interest in changing long term and if he were mine he might have to be homeless. The choice would be his. How has it worked so far to go broke running to his rescue? Think about trying something different before this kills you and he is alone anyway.

    Last edited: Dec 27, 2018
  4. Elsi

    Elsi Active Member

    Please Stop hurting yourself financially to clean up his messes. You’ve already paid way too much. Give only what you can comfortably and cheerfully and what will go towards something that will help him move forward towards greater independence. Don’t throw good money after bad in the illusion that ‘if we only help this one more time’ it will be the last time, or because you’re afraid to let him face the consequences of a damaged credit rating. Please don’t take out any more equity loans or credit card debt and please please please don’t take anything out of your retirement.

    In my opinion, parents should never pay things they can’t afford and aren’t legally obligated to pay. If the kids destroy their credit rating or have people pursue them in court, that’s on them. Not your circus. And if they make choices that result in them being homeless ... its hard but they need to learn to connect the dots between their choices and their circumstances. Your son may have to declare bankruptcy, live in housing circumstances he would prefer not to, take on additnal work, and do other unpleasant things to clean up his messes. It it NOT your responsibility to do this for him!

    This is a ‘put the oxygen mask on yourself before helping others’ situation. Will he be there to help you if you destroy your financial future trying to help him? Doubtful. Who helps you if you go under? What happens if you take on all this debt on his behalf and then you end up unemployed or disabled and can’t make the payments? What if you have a large unexpected home repair bill or the car dies and you don’t have savings to cover it because you spent it all on him? How will you ever help him in the future if you’re in a hole of your own?

    Don’t go down the hole with him. Throw him a lifeline if you’re able, but don’t let him pull you down.
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  5. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    Stop all money.

    How will you pay the home equity loan?

    He does not want to pay for sober living. Better for him that you do it.

    He chose to go to a high cost area. In my town sober lving is 400 a month for room and food and supervision.

    If he stops sober living so be it. Let him want sobriety enough to pay for it.
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    Last edited: Dec 27, 2018
  6. KTMom91

    KTMom91 Well-Known Member

    Student loans can go into forbearance or deferment until he is able to make the payments again. All he has to do is call and request it. Credit card companies will often work with someone who is unable to make payments because of unemployment. Again, he can call and request it.

    Did you sign anything agreeing to pay? Even if he's on your insurance, it's not your bill to pay unless you signed for it. I have to agree with Copa, he doesn't want to pay the bill. Who is paying for the storage unit? That can add up quickly. If he can get tattoos, he's got money somewhere.

    Please take care of yourself. Don't let your son drive you into bankruptcy over his choices.
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  7. I heard it from his house manager as well that the parents of the guys in the home are paying for their son's sober living monthly rent. I just don't know how they can do that. It sounds like some of those guys were in deeper than my son.
    I so want to say if you can afford the tattoos then you can figure a way to pay. I think I mentioned above he never told me about the last one he got, my daughter seen it on his snap chat story and asked him. I don't want to ruin that already rocky relationship by throwing his last tattoo in his face when he didn't tell me about it.

    I am not making any contact with him. He couldn't even text me on Christmas.

    Uses IOP as an excuse why he can't get overtime. I reminded him that IOP is only 3 nights a week.. he could stay late the other 2 and work on a Sat. morning as well. I guess you all know I received no reply to that.
  8. Elsi

    Elsi Active Member

    Doesn’t matter what other people are doing. What matters is that YOU cannot without putting your own financial stability at risk. If you can’t do it without borrowing/taking out of retirement/failing to pay your own bills, you can’t do it. He’s going to have to figure out a way.
  9. ForeverSpring

    ForeverSpring Well-Known Member

    Lots of people are rich too. Many can afford ro pay fully for college. So.should I have done that too even though I would have had to take out a huge loan or rob a bank or sell my house and live in a tent?My kids took out loans. If many parents jumped off a cliff, would you?

    Did this counselor tell you the truth, that many people cant go to their place because most people dont have extra money to pay for it? Thatmany of the paid for adults dont quit and their parents eventually go broke and the kid is still addicted? No they dont tell tou that. They want your money. Neither your son or you are their priority. This is a business. Money comes first. Its part of tje job to keep you paying.

    You seem to perhaps be a bit more susceptible to hearing that someone else did it. If you hear that, then you somehow think you should too.

    That isnt true. All the rehabs and sober livings have not done the job for your son. Are you Donald Trump rich? If not why do you think going broke will help your addicted son?

    Let him go to a very cheap place, find meetings and work more hours. IOP isnt helping him quit and he is using it as an excuse for you to support his arse as if he were still 14.

    He has to want to quit. Period
    He will when he wants to. Not before. No matter how much you spend.

    If you ARE rich enough, you can keep sending him to expensive rehabs and hope one of them comes at a time when he is sick of his life and wants ro quit. Because until he wants to he wont. That goes for growing up and caring about YOUR needs too.

    His nasty guilt baby rants show a lack of empatjy and no desire to change on any front. What would you tell another loved one in your shoes? What advice would you give that mother? Step back and look at the situation. As it is.As he is. As your financial situation allows.

    He will not jump in to care for you if you get sick and broke. That isnt who he is rigjt now. He may never be. Your own health must come first.

    I know I have said this before but its
    really your choice. If you feel it is reasonable to keep throwing money at his addiction and excuses and get sick yourself and lose every dime then you will do this. We camt make you take care of your basic needs.

    But I hope you start looking at this a different way. Most parents dont do this, cant afford to do this. The adult addict is expensive and until he wants to be a real adult all the money on eath wont make him do it if the Bank of Mom will do it for him. Just how it works. The addict will want more and more money from the Bank of Mom until it shuts the doors. Then he will get toddler angry but he will know things have changed.

    Drop the guilt please. You have helped hom already more than most can afford to help and he is not getting better. Its on him.

    Love and light!
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    Last edited: Dec 28, 2018
  10. toughlovin

    toughlovin Well-Known Member

    Dear Trying,

    I have been through this whole thing for so long..... so first you cannot put your own financial future at risk! You cannot. I am lucky in that we have had the resources to help our son so although we have helped him a lot we have not put ourselves at risk. I am here to tell you, even if you help him now this may not be the last time he comes to you wanting help or relapsing, this disease can go on for a very long time. So please take care of yourself and dont give him money you cannot afford.

    I am also here to tell you, that although it is heartbreaking and awful to have a kid who is homeless it is really not the end of the world. They find ways to survivie. It amazes me the way my son has survived when he has been homeless but he has.... he has panhandled, he has done some cons in hotels, he has slept in weird places, done things I dont know about and am sure I dont want to know about and he has survived.

    It sounds like his last relapse was pretty serious, given how much money he blew, which makes me wonder what drugs he got into.... that is worrisome. He really needs skin in the game for recovery.... and I am not talking tattoos. I am glad he is in sober living... hopefully it is a good one.

    He has some strengths given that he has been working and paying his rent..... so if you are going to offer help, I would do it in terms of advice and guidance in calling the credit card companies and student loans to see if he can set up something there to put off paying those bills etc. so he can pay his rent.

    Please take care of yourself.

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  11. elizabrary

    elizabrary Active Member

    I agree with Toughlovin- these kids are remarkably savvy about surviving in order to live as they want. Years ago when I threw my daughter out with my infant granddaughter because she wouldn't cease contact with her abusive baby daddy she walked off in a blizzard pushing a stroller. I was heartbroken. A few days later she showed up with a car she had wrangled from someone, somehow and had a place for her, her daughter and her baby daddy to live. She once got fired from a restaurant job because she was habitually late because she was drunk the night before. A year later she was in that same restaurant drunk at 2 am, saw her former manager and asked for her job back. He told her to come in the following Monday and they hired her back? WTH? My life never works out like that, but she charms and manipulates her way through things. I still worry about her, of course, but not nearly like I used to. She will do what she wants to and always figures out a way to get through things. She usually ends up better off than I expect her to. It must be a personality type that goes along with addiction. Or maybe they just don't give a f*ck so they ask and push for things we never would and that's why they get what the things they do.
  12. Crayola13

    Crayola13 Active Member

    If he goes to another city, he could probably find a cheaper sober living house. It's hard to find a good one. Some of those places allow them to smoke pot or drink in moderation because those things are not considered hard core drugs. From what I have seen, pot really is addictive.
  13. ForeverSpring

    ForeverSpring Well-Known Member

    They have better life skills as in street skills than us, especially if they do drugs. They deal with scary people and places and behaviors all the time. Some seem to prefer the streets to comfort and rules.
  14. Littleboylost

    Littleboylost On the road unwanted to travel

    You have gotten some great advice. Dockeep in mind the Sober Living manager wants his bills paid so he isn’t going to be an objective source for you. It’s tough but they have to pay to feel the consequences of their actions.