Rehab question

Discussion in 'Substance Abuse' started by AmericanGirl, Mar 12, 2012.

  1. AmericanGirl

    AmericanGirl Guest

    I don't know if this is a good or bad idea. I considered printing out about a dozen photos from difficult child's life and mailing them to him in rehab. Alternatively, last year when he graduated from high school, i wrote him a letter. Added photos to tell a story of the things i liked/admired in him. Thought about sending that.


    Still nothing from difficult child since Sat. He's still pouting cause I called him on some stuff.

    Yesterday, nurse said he was fully detoxed and cooperative. Today, therapist said he was moved back to rehab unit and was participating.
  2. Nancy

    Nancy Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I know when my difficult child was in rehab they encouraged families to send encouraging cards, letters, etc. Her girlfriend contacted a lot of their mutual friends from high school and had them all write notes to her and she brought them all to her on visiting day and difficult child posted them all over the wall by her bed. She also brought her a bunch of pics from high school and the next time we visited I saw difficult child had taped them all to the wall.

    So I say go for it. You don't know what the one thing will be that will make an impact on difficult child. difficult child told us later that she was so glad she had our support.

  3. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    I'd say it's a toss up. Maybe it's the difference between the sexes? While Nancy's family got positive vibes back for the support I'm not so sure that it's so positive for a guy with one parent. Lord knows we have not achieved success so I'm no expert. on the other hand I tend to think that a guy who already knows he is loved and has support might not benefit from cards, etc. while trying to forge his own way toward sobriety. Whatever you choose, of course, I'm on your team. Hugs DDD
  4. Signorina

    Signorina Guest

    I have no idea - I think I would ask the family coordinator about it. But most of all - follow your own heart. I think we are so used to second guessing everything with difficult children that we have to learn to trust our own instincts again. XXOO
  5. Nancy

    Nancy Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I forgot he's a guy lol.

  6. AmericanGirl

    AmericanGirl Guest

    [ I think we are so used to second guessing everything with difficult children that we have to learn to trust our own instincts again.]

    No kidding Sig...when you are told everything you do is wrong, you doubt every thought in your head. Sigh...
  7. toughlovin

    toughlovin Guest

    I think I would ask the therapist or family person at rehab what they suggest. I know in our case I decided backing off was the right thing to do.... but this is not my difficult children first time in rehab and he is a couple of years older. I suspect given the last interaction that he might take it as a sign to call and complain and give you a hard time..... but he may not. So I would check in with the rehab and then take their advice.

  8. AmericanGirl

    AmericanGirl Guest

    [I suspect given the last interaction that he might take it as a sign to call and complain and give you a hard time..... but he may not.]

    Nah he doesn't want to talk to me. Just found out that difficult child has gone through almost 200 minutes on the phone card since Thursday. Maybe 40 are to me. This isn't good. All I know is these are to my same area code. Wish I would have gotten the 800 number...was just so overwhelmed.
  9. toughlovin

    toughlovin Guest

    That is exactly why I did not want to give my son a phone card... and I looked and could not find one that just called home....However I did find a collect calling service which I hope is cheaper. Anyway it is called 1800call for less or something like that. So after he is out of minutes you could send them that info and have him call you that way. Might be more expensive than a calling card but then at least you are not paying for him to call his friends!

    Given all that if you want to write him, I would write him a short encouraging note but not send all the pictures etc.

  10. Kathy813

    Kathy813 Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Well, that is certainly good news.

    I don't have any advice about your question. Our difficult child was only in rehab for 30 days and we didn't have much contact with her during that time. The one family visit was pretty much a disaster because difficult child kept trying to get us to say that we would let her come back here to live and we would not agree to that.

    I know that later she asked us to buy her inspirational plaques and that sort of thing.

  11. pinevalley

    pinevalley Member

    I agree with the others that you should ask one of the rehab counselors about sending photos. They can tell you if it would help your difficult child to see the photos and the letter from you.
    Good luck.
  12. Prima

    Prima Guest

    I'm sorry if this comes across as mean but I know personally as long as we continue to wipe their butts, they will not stand on their own. This is his rehab and his time to learn the tools he will need to lead a clean life. I know you want to help but maybe let him make the first move. I know sometimes as moms, we are so used to helping our kids but in cases like this, the best help you can give is letting them figure out what they want to do without having us hovering over them.

    If he is old enough to have been admitted into rehab, he is old enough to man up and call you. He is in a safe caring environment and it seems although he is in rehab, you are still obsessed with him and what he's feeling and what you should be doing for him. Now is the time for you to figure out what your boundaries are and let your son figure out his road to recovery.
  13. AmericanGirl

    AmericanGirl Guest

    In my experience when someone starts by saying, "I'm sorry if this comes across as mean..." that they are aware the words they are choosing are indeed just that....mean.

    I choose to come here. I want to give and receive support along with helpful ideas.

    Most of us have been beaten up enough by our difficult children

    Just my two cents.
  14. Nancy

    Nancy Well-Known Member Staff Member

    AG I don't ever think it's not helpful to give support when they are in rehab (how do you like that for a double negative). I mean I feel that when they are in rehab it's important for them to know that we are supportive. And so I would do whatever I could to give encouragement and let difficult child know that when he is seeking recovery and doing the right thing that you are behind him. What I didn't take into account is that he is a guy and and guys may not like pictures plastered on their wall lol. So that part of my answer is probably not helpful. But a letter from you telling him how proud you are of him and encouraging him to continue in recovery is, I think, a good thing.

    Asking his therapist or counselor their opinion is probably best because he has the experience. But whatever you decide, you are a great mom and some day hopefully our difficult child's will realize what we have done for them and that there is no other person on earth that wants them to succeed more than we do.

  15. Kathy813

    Kathy813 Well-Known Member Staff Member

    While I agree that Prima should have phrased things in a more supportive way, I think she meant that this is your difficult child's journey and that as much as you want him to be successful, it is really up to him.

    We completely detached from our difficult child during her stint in rehab. I was still at the anger stage so I didn't want much to do with her. By detaching, I mean that we really left her on her own to work the program or not. We provided only the physical things that she needed.

    I don't know if that was the right thing to do or not. It was what worked for us at the time. It gave us a much needed break from difficult child drama and gave her time to focus on the program.

    All of our difficult child's are different and I agree that his counselor would know how he is doing and what the best thing is for him at this point in his recovery.

    You know we are all here to support you.

  16. Signorina

    Signorina Guest

    Truth be told - Prima's words upset me a bit too and I chose not to post because I wanted to cool down a bit. I am going to believe it was poor wording and I will leave it at that. Good intentions, poor communication.

    But the real reason I came back to post is that I have decided (TA DA!!) that it's a bad idea to send them. Take it for what it's worth. But I stewed on it and that's my advice. (see, I obsess about my own difficult child and yours too - what are friends for?)

    Making a collage of pictures and the past with words of inspiration is right up my alley. Totally something I really long to do. Thought about it while difficult child was home. Heck, I wish someone would do it for me. So, I am with you on that sister.

    But, he may not be in the right place to receive it in the spirit in which it was given. And if he's not, his response (or if he ignores it) will bring you to your knees. been there done that

    So, for now - I say skip it. You are taking a huge leap of faith by doing it - you'll pour your heart into it - and it is too much risk to your battered heart. I am sorry if I am sounding OTT. FWIW, I am the woman who hemmed and hawed over texting my own difficult child a simple "goodnight". And when he did not respond, I wept. When I awoke the next morning, I checked my phone asap. Nada and now I wish I hadn't put myself out there. I opened the door (just a wee crack) and got pain. Pathetic me.

    So don't dial pain should be expanded to "don't mail pain", "don't text pain"...

    I have no answers but lots of hugs.:dont_know:
  17. rejectedmom

    rejectedmom New Member

    When my difficult child went to another state for Residential Treatment Center (RTC) I made up a photo album for him to remind him that he had a loving family that was waiting fo him to return home. He enjoyed having it but that was the only time I did it for him. After that he was never in a really nice place where I was comfortable with him having pictures of us and our home for fear someone around him would latch onto them for not good reasons. So I just sent letters and took phone calls and when I could, I would pick him up on a weekend and take him out for a meal. That latter only when he was doing well in a sober house.
  18. AmericanGirl

    AmericanGirl Guest

    Hugs Sig....I get where you are coming from. Exactly where you are coming from.

    Ya know, it's sad that we have to think ths hard about simply trying to love someone. I'm not sending anything. Just leaving him be. Every time he calls, he is grouchy. Not time yet. Maybe not ever.
  19. toughlovin

    toughlovin Guest

    It is hard to know what to do sometimes. I took Primas words as actually good advice.... although worded somewhat harshly. That is where I am at this time at rehab... it is time for my son to figure things out. Somehow I think knowing mom is there loving him no matter what, always there as a backup, allows him to not man up as Prima said.

    So this time I have let him know of a way to call home. He can call me and of course I will accept the charges. But I really don't want to call and tell him I love him etc. if he is not in a place where he wants to talk to me or to take in my love. It is really up to him at this point to take the steps to repair our relationship. I have shown over and over and over and voer that I love him and am there for him. AG you have done this too!! He knows you love him.... that is not really the question.

    So we sit and wait until they are ready to take the steps to build a relationship with us.... and in the meantime we go on with our lives.