Once addict always an addict ????

Discussion in 'Substance Abuse' started by Guilty Mom, Jan 6, 2018.

  1. Guilty Mom

    Guilty Mom New Member

    ok I have posted before. As I said our son started drugs at age 16 and is now 33. He did serve one year in prison. As some of you know that is the most peace ever. He is always having to get a drivers license, social security card, loses his debit card and on and on. The most recent episode is he came home and it was apparent he was under the influence so his Dad called the police. They came out and agreed he was under the influence. The police called the Salvation Army but they were full. They told him to leave the premises and if he returned it would become criminal trespassing. He left and called our cell phones late in the night and we couldn’t answer in time so he called his grandmother at 12:30 am and she picked him up and he spent last night in her 1 bedroom apartment. He is on the couch. I do not want my Mother having to deal with him. She doesn’t have the money or room for him. Basically I would like to hear from you on how to deal with this. As an addict he says treatment will not work for him and he wants to see a hypnotist as he feels that is last resort. I don’t think I need a therapist. I think I need to hear from y’all as we all have experienced different situation. Thanking you in advance.
  2. Albatross

    Albatross Well-Known Member

    Hi Guilty Mom. Nice to "see" you again.

    You have nothing to feel guilty about! I am changing your name to "Great Mom" because you are concerned enough to post about your son.

    Your son's choices, especially at 33, are his own.

    I understand your reluctance to let your mom deal with this issue, but if there are 2 adults of sound mind there is not much you can do. Hopefully it is just one night and your mom will let him go out there and live out his choices.

    As far as treatment, this is just my opinion. I am sure others will be along soon to chime in.

    I think most addicts say treatment will not work for them because they are afraid treatment might actually work.

    The addict is not the one that should be making the decisions about what will work and what will not. Ownership in treatment is usually a good thing, but I am not convinced it is a good thing at all when dealing with addicts. Relinquishing control might be the only hope our children have in the face of an addiction.

    There is our precious child (even when they are 20, or 30, or 50) and there is the addict. The addict is not our child, but it has taken over our child's mind and soul.

    The addict doesn't care about anything except feeding its pleasures.

    I mean, really...if the addict's decisions were sound, our sons and daughters would not be where they are now.

    Letting the addict make the decisions is like putting the toddler in charge of the house while the grownups are out of town.

    So my opinion is that somehow your best bet is to facilitate your son getting to the point where he recognizes his addict is in control, and to realize this is NOT a good thing.

    In all likelihood, if your son is 33 years old, that won't come by talking to him. The best hope for you, and for him, is to be hands off and let him live out the fruits of his choices so he can see that for himself.

    I know, many times over, that this is easier said than done. It's a hard process to let go of our precious children and let them bear the consequences of their decisions.

    Keep posting. It helps a lot.
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  3. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Hi. Good morning. Albatross gave perfect advice in my opinion. I just wanted to chime in that you can't protect your mother unless you feel she is a victim by him of elder abuse (then you can turn him in) if she is just one adult to another trying to help him, you have no control over her choice or son's decisions or selfishness.

    My guess is that as an addict he will act badly to her soon enough and that she will be done with it

    Addicts can quit using. They do it every day. But it's not easy and it usually takes long term rehab plus sober living,. not hypnosis. Be nice if addicts could just get hypnotized and stop, right? He just isn't ready to quit. It isn't fast or easy. You are in my opinion doing the right thing, not letting him stay with you while he is actively using.

    One last thing. You don't need him waking you up at night. Addicts keep weird hours. You don't. Turn off your phone at night. Anything can keep until the morning, especially his whining. You can't help even in an emergency. You are not a medical professional. Hearing anything can wait. You need to sleep through each night and you matter. Suggest it to Mom. She may refuse to listen but you tried. All you can do.

    He is 33. You can't legally force a man that age to get treatment. Hopefully he will see the waste of his life soon and want to change it. Until then, his brain is on drugs so he won't be able to engage in logical conversation. Don't aggrevate yourself talking to him more than a few short times a week. Or once a week. Why rush to hear him whine about his crappy life at 2am? He is the cause of it, not you and only he can change it, not you.

    Do you have other, sane family? Good friends? Church? Hobbies? Activities you love? Time to focus on you. You are the only person you can change. Go back to the person you once were before son derailed your life. Your angst over him won't help him one bit. Detach, detach, detach. Ever go to AA? I do think you could benefit from therapy. At least, many of us have, if not most of us. This is too hard to do without FaceTime help.

    Love and hugs. Find peace tonight.
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    Last edited: Jan 7, 2018
  4. Littleboylost

    Littleboylost On the road unwanted to travel


    I agree with the advice you have been given here. I do not have anything to add accept that you are not alone.

    It is difficult to sit back and watch mayhem unfold for your mom and your son. This is of not your choosing and you can not control others.

    I agree with SWOT turn off your phone. When my son was acting out he was disruptive to us at all hours of the night. We started turning our phones off. He is still here. No tragic occurrence that couldn’t wait until a civil hour. Was this easy to do? Not at all but it put a respectful boundary in place that gave us back some peace and rest.

    Your son is now 33. His life is his life and his story to write. Don’t let it disrupt yours. It won’t change anything.
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  5. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    I fully believe that hypnosis does not help addicts. Rehab and living a clean and sober life without any substances (coffee doesn't count and tobacco is still legal) is the only way to be truly in recovery. You never recover, but you can be in the process of recovering. The minute you think you are done being an addict, you have just taken a big step down that slippery slope. I have seen it MANY times with MANY people.

    It is time for you to stop worrying about other adults and worry about yourself. Everyone is impacted if there is an addict in the family. The disease is catching and it warps your thinking until you take responsibility for the addict's behavior. Only the addict deserves that responsibility.

    You cannot control what the Grandmother does. Or what Son does. Continue to make your son leave when he is using. It is the only way. Talk to grandma about why he couldn't stay with you, and then let her make her own choices unless she is unfit to make those choices.

    Go to NarAnon or AlAnon meetings. Get private therapy for help with codependence. Do what you can to learn to NOT enable your son and to NOT solve his problems. When he fully owns his problems, he will see what a mess he is making. Eventually he will hit his own personal bottom and want to figure out how to clamber out of that hole. It will take FAR longer than you want it to.
  6. Guilty Mom

    Guilty Mom New Member

    I need help from those of you that have experienced this. My son is 33. Been involved in drugs since he was 17. My son had to call the cops out to our house. They did not take our son away but had him leave the premises. If he comes back to our home he will be charged with criminal trespassing. Long story short he ended up at his grandmother’s house and has stayed there 2 nights. She definitely does not to be dealing with him. She is a softy so she said she can’t imagine a parent throwing their son out in the cold and she can’t do that either. I am scared for him to be in her home. Bottom line I need feedback on how to get him out. I have been thru so much and you come to realize your addict lies and seems to care about family. Thanking you in advance♥️
  7. Guilty Mom

    Guilty Mom New Member

    I meant to say my husband had to call the police to our home.
  8. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    Are you afraid your son is going to hurt Grandma? Why are you so determined to get your son out of her home? I realize that it isn't helping him hit bottom or feel consequences to be holed up at Grandma's house, but what about your son being at Grandma's house is bothering you?

    We have given you answers and are not understanding your insistence on getting Son out of Grandma's house. Please explain what you think will happen.

    Please understand that I am truly not trying to be dense or mean or anything. I am just really not understanding.
  9. Guilty Mom

    Guilty Mom New Member

    I understand what you are saying and very much appreciate your help. I am not afraid of him hurting his Grandma. However she is already sick to her stomach as he went off yesterday and told her he would be back to her house at 8. That never happened. He has stolen some medications from her before when he just stopped by for a visit. My mother doesn’t have the money or space for him to stay. She lives in a 1 bedroom apartment. I am pretty sure he has lost his job. Today I am going to pick up his stuff and leave it somewhere and he will have no reason to return. My mother says you just can’t put him out on the streets he will probably die. She hasn’t experienced what me and my husband have. So it is not that I am afraid he will hurt her it is her age and health is my concern.
  10. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    You are a caring daughter.

    Having said that, how do you think you can control Mom, even for her health? Legally there is nothing you can do. I assume you talked to her already so she knows how you feel. Could anyone tell you what to do about your son until you were ready?

    We control one person....us.

    Many people are willing to get sick and even die to enable an adult loved one gone wrong. It helps neither and in my opinion is harmful to both, but you can't stop it if she is guilted into thinking she is helping him even if she is not.

    I am sorry this is happening. Unless he is hurting her, I don't know that there is elder abuse. Stealing her medication or money may be considered elder abuse if she'll say he did these things.

    I am so sorry.
  11. Guilty Mom

    Guilty Mom New Member

    I really appreciate your reply. So my son did not return to her home. Of course she just thinks he is mentally ill perhaps. So I talked with her late last night and told me he didn’t return. He told her when he stayed with her that he was going to be well and get help before she dies So this morning I cleaned out his room. I told my Mother I will come by and get his duffle bag of stuff. So I feel I have done the correct thing to get him out of there. This morning I cleaned up the room where has stayed and put it back to the way the room looked before we let him stay with us. Someone said you worry about what will happen to your child yet when they live under your roof they make is so irritating for parents. We have been too blinded, vulnerable, soft hearted for 16 years not to mention the money we have spent. An addict just doesn’t care what others are going thru they just use us.
  12. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    You did the right thing. The addicted brain on drugs is similar to a psychopaths. No morals, no conscience, no real feelings of love for anyone except the drug. If he quits one day, minus whatever damage he suffers from the drugs, he should get his emotions back.

    But of course using drugs, even pot, is about dulling the pain of emotions. It is very sad.

    Be good to yourself.
  13. RN0441

    RN0441 100% better than I was but not at 100% yet

    Welcome and glad you found us.

    Everyone has given you great advice.

    When our adult children are sick we are sick too.

    You have to take care of yourself and your husband. Your worrying and fretting will not help your son one bit. If it did, I know we'd all gladly do it!

    My son has been using on and off since the age of 15. I finally did go to therapy to help create boundaries for myself and mainly for him.

    Your mother doesn't really understand what she is dealing with. It's very hard for anyone that hasn't dealt with this to really see what is going on. How can they? It's not the norm.

    You have come to the right place because all of us here have dealt with this and we can offer you support and tell you what we feel has worked for us. Take what you need and leave the rest. It helps not to feel so alone.
  14. New Leaf

    New Leaf Well-Known Member

    Hi GM, So sorry for what you are going through. It is hard enough to deal with an addicted using d c, then on top of that to worry about an elderly parent. My Mom lives far away, so would not have to deal with a grandchild showing up at her home. I would be besides myself with worry for her if this were the case.
    It is unfortunate that your son stole from your Mom. I can see where you would be concerned for her well being. Even if he wouldn't hurt her physically, the emotional and mental strain of dealing with an addicted, using loved one is over the top for parents, a grandparent is a whole different layer.
    I am sorry you had to do this. It is a double grief. Hard enough to stand strong and remove a d c from our own home, but to have to do this to protect our parents? It is like going through it all over again. You are a kind loving daughter and mother.
    I understand completely your concern and actions. Sorry I did not have advice for you, as I have not experienced this myself. I think I would have felt and done the same.
    This is the unfortunate reality many of us have faced, or are facing. It is true. The drug of choice has so much influence and control over our d cs brains and actions. It is a hard road we all travel with this. What you did for your Mom was difficult, loving and courageous. I hope she understands one day why you and your husband stand tough through the heartbreak of your son's situation. My Mom is supportive of my stance with my two. She loves them and is concerned for their well being, and I hope that one day when she asks me about them, I can tell her that they are doing okay. She agrees with me that for now, all we can do is pray that they will see their potential and choose differently.
    I am so sorry for your troubles GM. It is tough enough to go through this and be strong for our own sanity, but to have to explain to a grieving, worried grandma, and take action like you did, is another hardship.
    Do something kind for yourself, you have been through a difficult time with this.
    I hope your Mom understands how hard this is on you and your husband.
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  15. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    It is clear that you want Grandma to not worry about your son or his problems. Hopefully he won't go back and you won't have to deal with this in the near future.

    Whatever happens, all you can truly control is what you do. What you think and feel. That doesn't feel good all the time, but it is the truth. What Grandma does is not something you can stop. Only Grandma can make or change Grandma's decisions.

    I often find comfort in the Serenity Prayer. I don't know if you are religious or not. I am not "churchy" but I have faith. I hope you find this helpful.

    God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; courage to change the things I can; and wisdom to know the difference.

    When you start to dwell on Grandma choosing to allow Son to stay in her 1 bedroom apartment, or Son wanting you to do something, take a moment and think of the Serenity Prayer. It might be quite helpful.

    I am sorry we cannot give you a magic fix to make Son stay away from Grandma. It truly infuriates me when one of our difficult children takes advantage of a loving elderly relative just to avoid feeling the consequences of their own bad choices. I really really really want to find that magic fix for you and everyone else with a difficult kid and this type of situation!

  16. Guilty Mom

    Guilty Mom New Member

    Thanks for your helpful words. An update...he didn’t return to his Grandmas house. Of course not it was payday. This is what has inspired. When he didn’t return to Grandmas I told him that she lives in an apartment and he can not go back to live there. I picked him up from work this past Thursday and told him that. He got on his cell phone and called a buddy and I dropped him off there. At this point he revealed that his car was stolen. What?? I would have never let this happen bc he needs to get to work. Asked for some money for payback for the tires we recently bought for him. Didn’t give me any of his $650 check. Said we would settle up. Duh. Said he was going to do a vehicle wrap and would make $1500 and would give us some money. Never happened. It is all lies. Bottom line I feel stong and see no reason for him to come home and live with us and make us miserable. My husband picked him up from a friends house and dropped him off at the Salvation Army. He sniffled when he dropped him off. I am standing my position that I have been advised to not him live with us. My husband is struggling with the fact he now has no car and it is very cold outside. He feels like if he dies we did not do all we could have. Please let me hear from you guys.
  17. New Leaf

    New Leaf Well-Known Member

    I am sorry for your heartache GM. I have two daughters addicted and using. Using drugs and using anyone who would offer them help.
    Your son is 33. I am sure you have both tried long and hard, just about everything to help get him on his feet. It doesn’t work. He needs to realize his responsibility and capability. Drug addicts living in our homes do not do this.
    I am sorry that your husband is struggling. It is hard to have our addicted loved ones out there. Unfortunately, it is the consequences of their choice to use and abuse drugs, and to use and abuse loved ones. We are not rugs to be tread upon, lied to, stolen from. If we do not stand up and say enough, how will our d cs ever learn? Nothing changes, if nothing changes.
    In the comfort of my home, my daughters drug use ramped up. It was “easy street” for them to continue as is. I am fortunate to live in the tropics, so I don’t have to worry about the cold.
    You wrote that your husband dropped son off at the Salvation Army. Will he be able to stay there? If so, that is shelter.
    Our d cs choice to squander money and neglect necessities is baffling. Drugs drive the bus. The “help” we give a using addict is in reality helping them to continue using.
    I am sorry for what you are going throug GM. I have been in similar circumstances with my two, minus the cold weather.
    It is hard if your spouse is not on the same page with you. Everyone processes in their own time and way. Would your husband go to naranon or counseling to help you both cope and sort through this?
    I hope you find ways to release the stress of all you have been through. It is difficult when focus is on the consequences of our D cs choices. We become very “back burner” while putting out the fires of this mess. The drama and chaos is over the top.
    Please take very good care of yourself. Remember, the end of the story is not written. If you have faith in a higher power, pray. It helps me when I feel overwhelmed and powerless and sad over my daughters situations. After all these years, I have learned that I have no control over their choices. When I have had them live with me, my home becomes a nightmare. It became a matter of sanity and survival for me, and my young son.
    I have also found that many times I worried myself sick over them being out there, and it was just another Tuesday for them. I would struggle and feel depressed, while they were out partying. Sigh.
    Our lives matter too, GM. The peace of our homes, matter. The rest of our lives matters, too.
    My daughters are 38 and 29. Like you, the stress and challenges with them started in their teens. It has been a long, hard, tiring journey.
    It is way past the time that they are supposed to grow up and learn to take care of themselves. I will not be on this earth forever to rescue them. They have got to learn to take care of themselves.
    As does your son.
    Stay strong GM, but do understand that your husband has his own hardship and heartache over this.
    My heart goes out to you both.
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  18. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    Of course he isn't going to freeze in the cold and end up dead. He has a whole network of druggie friends that he will party with. They will find various places to crash or couch surf until it warms up. Remember when you were SOOOOO WORRIED about him after he got out of the hospital? Where was he? Back at his housing. He may have had to leave because of fireworks, but he has friends (drug buddies) who will let him crash on their couches. If worse comes to worse, he will find someone who will take him in for a while.

    He comes to you because you are the easiest mark, not the only mark. If you say no, he doesn't go out and have nowhere to go. It doesn't wound him mortally if you say he cannot stay with you. Sure, he makes a big deal out of it, but that is only so that you will give him something else and will continue to make his life easy. It pushes that Guilt Button that gives him so many sweet rewards with so little effort. Then he goes to the next mark, er, person and hits them up for a warm place to stay. There is ALWAYS a party when you are a drug user.

    The reason that being turned away by his parents doesn't wound him mortally is that he is too focused on getting high. Nothing really matters but getting high. Getting money for getting high matters. Sure, being warm matters, but getting high matters a whole lot more. It is hard to understand but it truly is life for an addict. It would be great if you could get your husband to go to a 12 step meeting with you. Alanon is pretty much the same as Naranon, as far as the steps go.

    Stay strong. It might be wise to ask your son to prove that his car was stolen before you give him much help for being without a car. It is highly likely that he sold it for drugs or drug money and does not want you to know that. It may even be that he sold it for less than the tires you put on it. The car also may have been impounded or taken away because he was driving while high or due to another violation.

    I have known many parents who had difficult children that claimed a car was "stolen" only later the parents learned that it was impounded or that the child sold it for an absurdly small amount of money for drugs or alcohol. I went to high school with a girl who "sold" her 5 year old fancy sports car (I don't know car models, but this was the envy of our entire high school), for enough money to party for a weekend. She didn't sign any paperwork, and it wasn't in her name. But when her dad reported it stolen and the person was arrested, the cops were NOT happy to discover what really happened. So be careful in believing that his car was "stolen". The word can have more than one meaning.
  19. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    The car made my radar go off too

    I thought the same thing. These drug addicts have more stolen ( cough) items than anyone else. But I never believe they are stolen. These addicts would sell their grandmothers for drug money. All the better if the old lady believes the story and buys a new car or hands out guilt cash.

    My daughter who used told me "Never believe a drug addict. They lie. All.the.time."

    They will sell their coat that we lovingly made sure was so warm, expensive shoes and boots, computers, cell phones, gift card and ,yes, a car, especially if they think we will believe it was stolen. Lots of our adult kids here tend to be thievery victims a lot.

    If it was "stolen" your son should be eager to file a police report. Did he?

    I hope your husband doesn't do anything to replace the car that he probably sold for drugs and sympathy. Make him file a police report before feeling sorry for him. Since drug addicts lie he may still have the car and want another one so he can sell one and still have one. I would not trust his word without proof. His word means nothing.

    Honestly, I have been on this board over a decade and not one adult of a guilty, worried prent has ever frozen to death. Nor has anyone committed suicide on the street, at least in this community. The homeless population is vibrant and supportive and there are bonfires and people tell others where to go for meals and shelter. Your son had shelter but very obviously YOU care more about his shelter than he does. He will not follow simple rules for a roof.
    Many parents here wonder "Doesn't he know what he is doing to us?"

    Yes, he knows, they all know. The addict is like a psychoath. No conscience. They know and don't give a rats. We are just more suckers who will help them use drugs. My daughter would look me straight in the eyes crying and lie to me.

    And finally no drug addict should have a functional car. For one thing, where do they get money to keep it running. Secondly they are driving obviously intoxicated and have a much higher chance of killing someone else or dying in a car wreck than freezing to death. My daughter had three car wrecks. In one, a lady was injured and she owed close to $15,000. We made her pay herself until she was several years clean and sober. Then her father paid it off.

    Cars and drugs/alcohol are a danger to every driver on the road plus our kids. Yes, we feel sorry for them. That doesn't entitle us to put others at risk, when our kids are using. At least I don't think so. My daughter crashed our vehicle once and lost the right to our cars. She was driving "friends" cars for her other crashes, but at least we were not responsible.

    I wish you a peaceful day! Love and hugs!
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  20. Guilty Mom

    Guilty Mom New Member