New here...

Discussion in 'Substance Abuse' started by Doglady, Sep 15, 2017.

  1. Doglady

    Doglady New Member

    Hi, I'm new here. My 20 year old daughter who we adopted in her mid teens was missing all week. Turned up last night. The last year has been one disaster after the next. My husband and I are in our mid 30s, I met daughter when I was volunteering with her and did for a couple years before we became her foster and then adoptive parents.

    She's had a very difficult life. Every bad thing you can think of has happened to her. She was in foster care for 14 years. She has serious mental health issues including ptsd, adhd, and a host of others. I never expected it to be easy but i hoped that our intervening would guide her away from this life she has chosen. It didn't.

    Shes been moving states every couple of months, when something goes wrong she takes off. Earlier this year she was arrested for trying to strangle her birth mother (in another state) who she'd been living with for a couple months. At that point bio mom told me she thought daughter was on meth. i had talked to daughter and seen her a week before in the depths of psychosis so I believed her. Birth mom is not exactly trustworthy though. daughter said it was ecstasy, which given it happened again after she went to a rave is possible. We ended up letting her come home with strict parameters, which she failed. We told her she was no longer welcome to live with us after she failed at basic responsibility, let alone getting a therapist and a job. We get an adoption assistance check from the state until she is 21, so I cosigned an apartment in a town 45 min away and pay the rent. She could walk to her job and things were fine for about a month.

    She quit her job and ran again, to another state. I didn't hear from her for a full month, which i knew meant she was up to no good. Finally heard from her this week when her friend kicked her out for using drugs in the apartment, where there is a 9 mo old baby. She naturally says her friends screwed her over and took her money, which has happened so many times... she does tend to attract people who will take advantage of her but it's hard for me to believe that that just keeps happening.

    Her friend texted me and I asked the friend if daughter was on something. She said she thought so and that daughter was behaving like an addict. I was getting ready to file a missing persons report yesterday because no one had seen her heard from her in days and she has no phone. She finally contacted me last night.

    Without addressing the drug use I told her she needs in patient care for her mental health issues (she 100% does), and she argued and used the nonsensical logic i'm sure you're all used to. She said she hadn't even been drinking and hadn't done drugs in months without me bringing it up. Later she said her plan was to 'get clean', so I asked what she was doing. She said cocaine, ecstasy and a bunch of hallucinogens. She's tried ketamine and pcp in the past, as well as lsd. She's done drugs off and on for the last year so no surprise there. But she said she got fired from her (stripper) job because she was barfing with the flu and wanted to go home early. ALARM BELLS. that to me says opiate and/or benzo withdrawal.

    Given the current epidemic in young people, I have to prepare for the worst and assume she's doing heroin. Not that any other opiate or benzo would be much better. she was already the most impulsive person i've ever met, so i am certain if she tried heroin once that would be it. she thinks she can make enough money stripping to come back to her apt here and take care of herself and get well. that isn't going to happen and i told her that. she did acknowledge that she needs professional mental health help but was adamant about 'doing it on her own terms.' i.e., no residential treatment. i really think she is making any excuse to stay where she is and use and stay with this guy she has shacked up with.

    Sorry for such a long post. This has been a long and very difficult journey, and I strive to take care of myself but some days it's very hard. I just started school for my masters degree full time and I work; the masters is something i'm doing for me and something i've wanted for a long time, but doing school when your child is a homeless addict is.... difficult.

    with love.
  2. BloodiedButUnbowed

    BloodiedButUnbowed Active Member

    Speaking from experience, the only thing that has helped me is learning how to detach with love.

    You did not cause, cannot control, and cannot heal your daughter's issues, no matter how much you love her.

    Her life is her own and she will do with it what she will.

    You have set boundaries for her behavior - that is huge. You may find that more boundaries need to be set. Take it day by day.

    I am sorry she is so troubled, and I hope that she is able to find peace and healing sooner rather than later.
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  3. pigless in VA

    pigless in VA Well-Known Member

    Welcome Doglady. You're in the right place for support. Your daughter still may decide to change her life, but it will have to be her decision. It's terrible to watch people you love go down this path of addiction. It's hard to stay strong and focused on your own goals when a child is breaking your heart.
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  4. Doglady

    Doglady New Member

    thank you culturanta and pigless. every time something like this happens, i get ptsd from the phone ringing. i have a minor panic attack every time it rings. i desperately don't want to talk to her right now. i don't know if that is the right thing to do. we have given her a million opportunities to take a better path and she always chooses path c, the worst thing possible. i don't want to cut her off but she also tends to call 'abusively' as my therapist calls it; she'll call 5 - 10 times in a row and leave a ton of voicemails. sometimes very angry and hostile for me not answering although that has gotten much better lately. I told her she is actively choosing homelessness over her nice apartment, safety, and mental health.

    i want to be emotionally supportive but i only have so much left at any given time...
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  5. ForeverSpring

    ForeverSpring Well-Known Member

    Doglady (I relate and have a shirt that says "Crazy Dog Lady") i am an adoptive mom of three great kids and two older adopted kids who did not really understand family and family bonds. One just left us after his marriage. Never saw him again. We adopted him from another country at six. He is thriving, but wont talk to us and wont tell us why. Twelve or so years later it feels as if he was never our son.

    We also adopted a youngster with a horrible past at age 11 and he was so dangerous we could not keep him with us. He molested our two youngest and killed two of our beloved dogs, lied, stole, etc. He was gone by age 13...we needed to protect our other children and pets.
    And ourselves. He was growing big. And strong.

    You met your daughter in her teens, late in her development and very traumatized and obviously not stable or sure she could love or trust another to parent her. You did a brave and noble thing by adopting her, but I am not surprised she is a mess. We thought if we loved them enough they would eventually heal. It is nothing like that. Love does not heal them or none of us would be here.

    Older age adopted kids dont trust others and often hate everyone, especially themselves and those who try to love them. It scares them. They have been emotionally on their own forever and often cant fit into a family or a conventional life. It is very hard to overcome such traumatic pasts.

    I am not surprised Daughter is using drugs. She has tons and tons of baggage from way before she met you and she has to want to heal from it and commit to long term therapy to handle all that happened...just to feel whole.

    I dont know if you have other kids. If you have any from infancy, you know it is very different from adopting an older child.

    I hope you learn to take care of yourself. You have done all you can for your daughter and you cant make her stop acting crazy and using drugs. All the worry and heartbreak we have does not help them one little bit. We need to be healthy, mentally and physically, for ourselves and all of our loved ones. We owe it to ourselves and them.

    I hope you maybe try therapy for YOU. We can cope even when our grown kids are messes. But usually we need third party help.

    I wish all the best for all of you.Daughter will not get better until she chooses to get serious help. Good luck.
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    Last edited: Sep 15, 2017
  6. Crayola13

    Crayola13 Active Member

    I'm glad she was fired from the dancing job. Those girls get paid in drugs sometimes. The customers follow them home and get aggressive when they are rejected, etc. I think it's a dangerous job. Not being in that culture might help the drug problem.
  7. Doglady

    Doglady New Member

    I agree. Although she's been fired from like 8 stripper jobs in the past year.. after she got arrested she promised to get a 'normal' job but she loves the instant gratification of being paid in cash. And the potential to occasionally make a lot.
  8. pasajes4

    pasajes4 Well-Known Member

    You are a very loving and caring person to have done all of the things that you have done to help this young lady. What the others have said about it being their choice to live a positive life or not is sadly a truth we have all had to face with our troubled children.

    I have a 21 year old son who is now homeless due to his negative life style. Like your daughter he was given every opportunity to do better and chose not to. It is like watching a train wreck and not being able to stop it. I agree that the constant barage of phone calls just keep us stuck in the muck right along with them.

    You are ahead of the game by having boundaries and seeking therapy for yourself. Keep reading through the posts and post when you need to.
  9. Doglady

    Doglady New Member

    Thanks so much pasajes. She called today and said she wants to do inpatient treatment. We bought her a bus ticket back to our state and we will decide what to do when she arrives. she still has her apartment in the town near ours, so that's good. living with us is just not an option. The facility I want her in doesn't take her medicaid and i'm not sure i can her added to my insurance outside of open enrollment. however there is a good chance she will change her mind about inpatient when she gets back. she is pretty desperate.

    there are intensive outpatient places in her town and medicaid will arrange her transportation since she can't drive, so that's something. that will require a lot of work on her part which i am not hopeful about.

    We could technically pay for her to go to in patient, but i'm not convinced it would be worth it right now. we would only be able to afford it once and for a month. this particular place is perfect though, it's dual-diagnosis and focuses on trauma. But at least that would be an option for the future, too. Especially once I can get her added to my insurance.

    If you have thoughts or advice I would much appreciate them. I know I shouldn't put more effort into this than she is willing to.

    If she comes back to her apartment here, she has no job or money so we would have to buy her groceries. what kind of limits do we set on that? a month? again her apartment is paid for out of adoption assistance but that eats up all of it.

    thanks in advance
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  10. Doglady

    Doglady New Member

    Oh i should have noted that she said she's not doing anything that requires detox.
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  11. ForeverSpring

    ForeverSpring Well-Known Member

    Does she qualify for a food card? Why should you pay for her food if she can get it another way and refuses to work?
    Since she is not a drug addict, would outpatient work? It CAN be pretty intensive, which she needs, but she could process it at home. Her apartment. She will need ongoing therapy to heal. She has had so much trauma...
  12. Doglady

    Doglady New Member

    Yeah there are some good intensive outpatient places. I think that's likely what we will try. You're right, I hadn't thought of getting a food card. Thank you!!
  13. Littleboylost

    Littleboylost On the road unwanted to travel

    Don't pay for rehab! Just don't. Big hug for you and I wish your family and her all the best!
  14. pigless in VA

    pigless in VA Well-Known Member

    The basic message here is that she is unwilling to give up drugs at this time. My personal opinion is that someone will fail to get mentally healthy when engaging in escapist drugging activities.
  15. pigless in VA

    pigless in VA Well-Known Member

    The basic message here is that she is unwilling to give up drugs at this time. My personal opinion is that someone will fail to get mentally healthy when engaging in escapist drugging activities.
  16. Doglady

    Doglady New Member

    She's back. She says she still wants to do inpatient so we are taking her to the er for an evaluation today. We will see if she holds through that. Wish me luck...
  17. ForeverSpring

    ForeverSpring Well-Known Member

    Lots and lots of great luck!
  18. Sam3

    Sam3 Active Member

    Oh, I read that's as she is not doing a type of drug that would require medically managed detox.

    In any case, best of luck.
  19. Doglady

    Doglady New Member

    Yeah she's not, she needs regular mental health inpatient care. They admitted her but she called this morning and said it's a stereotypical psychiatric ward, and she hates it. And the nurse last night told me she couldn't have regular clothes, and now she actually cab and she needs them, and the g******* place is an hour away. I'm so exhausted. I need her to make the best of this but telling her that won't go over well. I'm doing awful in my first semester of grad school (for computer science, so it's super hard) and I just can't concentrate. And I'm still working half time too at a demanding professional job.

    I don't know how you all do this for so long. It's so hard not to feel responsible for her. And I think my husband is starting to really resent everything she's putting us through. I'm so tired.
  20. Sam3

    Sam3 Active Member

    This is a real :censored2: until you surrender to it, and then it's just a :censored2:.

    No amount of your suffering will tip the balance. It's hard to believe because it's so counterintuitive to parents, but every single person on this site is proof of that.

    In fact I've heard it said over and over that the family system cannot change until the parents change. The kids sometimes try to rebalance it themselves by acting out more, but in the end, if you remain resolved they may find a new equilibrium too.

    A new equilibrium isn't guaranteed, but I do believe the first proposition. They will not get better because we suffer more on their behalf.