So this is where we are at

Discussion in 'Substance Abuse' started by Nancy, May 25, 2012.

  1. Nancy

    Nancy Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I bought her shoes for work, I think I already mentioned that. husband talked to her landlord and he said he needed her May rent by today or he would filed eviction. husband pain the May rent and he agreed to work with her to pay June rent. It's only a stall since she won't be able to pay June rent.

    I met her at the hospital for her dr follow up. They left the IUD in and feel it was the chlmaydia that caused the pain and the antibiotic will take care of that. They sent her to the lab to be tested for hepatitis, aids, herpes, gonorrhea and a couple others I can't remember. I am fairly certain she has herpes, and hope to god she does not have any of the others. I hope the dr explained she cannot have sex without condoms and that she has to tell all her partners so they can get treated. When I told her that she said she didn't plan on having sex with any of the people she already had sex with. Of course not because they only wanted it once and they are gone.

    Her internet has been turned off, her gas is going to be tured off any day, she owes $1,000 on her care credit that she stole from her employer and is now in collection, and she has no money for food or gas or parking. She advertised on craigslist for a roommate and was solicited by a sugar daddy and she gave him her phone number and what street she lived on and sent him a picture.

    The whole situation is so sad and desperate and breaks our heart. She had a two and a half month party and spent over $3,000 during that time partying and did not pay one bill during that time. When I asked her today if she still believes drugs and alcohol did not get her into this mess she said yes.

    Her new job at the hotel is training her on serving and bartending. Wonderful huh?

  2. Kathy813

    Kathy813 Well-Known Member Staff Member

    So what does she think did get her into this mess?
  3. Nancy

    Nancy Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Being stupid.
  4. Kathy813

    Kathy813 Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Well . . . there is that, too. Jeez, when will these kids ever get it?

  5. Calamity Jane

    Calamity Jane Well-Known Member

    Nancy, this is such a tragedy because she's wasting the healthiest, prettiest years of her life on hard living. She's both lucky and cute now because she's only 20, and she's attractive to a wide swath of people, but once her lifestyle ages her prematurely, and it will, she will be amazed how quickly the worm turns. I hope she recognizes this before it's too late.
  6. buddy

    buddy New Member

    So heart breaking. Sending her a box of common sense for Christmas.
  7. pinevalley

    pinevalley Member

    I can totally understand how this situation is terribly sad and heart breaking. I am sending you lots of hugs for your hurting heart.
  8. AmericanGirl

    AmericanGirl Guest


    I frankly don't know how you manage. You are doing the right things, I know you know that, and my heart is breaking for you.
  9. toughlovin

    toughlovin Guest

    Oh Nancy I am so sorry she is self destructing right now..... you know when I say that I know how you feel that in fact I really do. I think though as awful as this has all been for me it has got to be even worse having a daughter in this situation... as much as I worried about him when he was homeless at least i knew he would and could fight back if someone assaulted him. I think having a daughter is even harder.

    I hate to say this but i don't think your daughter will get help until she has no other although I totally understand your husband paying her rent I think it will just give her another month to spend her money on things besides her bills. I could totally see my son behaving exactly the same way.

    My son also doesnt think the problem is drugs and alcohol. Really it feels like they are so much alike and as far as we know they have never met!! Although it is obvious to you and me that drugs and alcohol are part of the problem I have also come to believe that in some sense my son is right.... the problem is not the drugs and alcohol by themselves. There is an underlying issue that makes him self sabatoge and self destruct.... because much of the trouble he has been in is not totally related to drug and alcohol use. It is related to his relationships with women and his impuslivity and just plain thoughtless decisions. What makes him do these things. I don't know but until we get to the bottom of that behavior i don't think he will or can stay clean. I suspect the same is true of your daughter.

    The theory in the case of my difficult child is that he experienced some major trauma.... probably between 6th and 7th grade. I have been wracking my brain and can not come up with anything but he got seriously depressed in 7th grade and that is when my relationshp with him went way downhill. Now he was very challenging before that don't get me wrong... but things definitely got worse then. I do feel guilty that I somehow missed something major at that time but there is nothing I can do about it.... it is now up to him to get treatement to help him figure out what is going on and how to live his life differently.

    I think your daughter needs more than AA.... I think 12 step programs are great... but I think people with underlying mental health issues need more and I think that is true for my difficult child and yours.

    I have been thinking about you all week!!!

  10. pepperidge

    pepperidge New Member

    I am so sorry for all of you dealing with this. I am reading to start working on my detachment skills in advance.

    I am just guessing here, but it seems the difficulty some parents face here is suppose its not just mental illness (like depression that might be medicated) or trauma that might be dealt with. Suppose its Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS) or similar brain damage that just leaves these kids pre frontal cortex in some state of arrested development? Or maybe not fully developed to thirty years. Such a difficult road to navigate, knowing that even with just totally cutting them off they may not have the brain power or whatever to really make a success if they wanted to.

    My heart goes out to all of you wrestling with these difficult decisions, and I hope to learn from your strength.
  11. Nancy

    Nancy Well-Known Member Staff Member

    TL I agree that there is a lot more going on here besides alcohol and drugs. I've said before that she was an addict long before she took her first drink or smoked her first pot cig. The thing about being sober though is that if you follow the program you get all phases of your life in order by following the steps. When I go to my support meetings and the addicts speak, so many of them say that when they stopped drinking and drugging they still had the same demons to slay and they have to work very hard every day to do that. I don't see my difficult child ever having enough drive to do that. And I have seen enough professionals in her life to know none of them have the answers either. If we could put her into a sructured treatment program for the rest of her life she may have a chnace but left to her own devices is disaster.

    Pepperidge for you and I, I believe a huge part of it is genes and prenatal environment with our difficult child's.

  12. Calamity Jane

    Calamity Jane Well-Known Member

    I think adoption messes up our difficult children more than we can imagine, and more than they will admit. It's hard, at least in my kids' perspectives, to have no knowledge of who you are, who your bio family is, why you were given up, oh Lord, I thought love was all we needed! We have a fairly large family, and we live close to each other, and their cousins are all around the same ages as my kids, but my kids don't look like their cousins, they don't look like us, and it's jarring because my neices and nephews look, sound, walk and laugh just like their parents. They're very smart and conscientious and competitive like their parents, too. Very high achievers. It hurts when Grandpa (without any malice) points out how much his granddaughter looks just like his daughter, or when his grandson plays basketball just as well as his son used to play. My kids were reminded of this almost every year in school, when a teacher would assign a "family tree" project. This happened in both Catholic school and public school--it made me cringe! easy child would just get to work and ask me, "who was grandpa's father", etc., not blinking an eye. difficult child would chafe (understandably) and made it known it was a stupid waste of time. He had no idea who his real relatives were, and probably never would. He was angry, and I know I messed up by not thinking of getting him therapy when he was young...I think I just wanted him to accept US as his family, just like easy child did, and not dwell on negative things.

    It's just hard, because I now believe that biology is destiny. My adopted easy child seems to handle it well; she always had a great sense of humor and an easy personality that allows her to relate to all sorts of people. I'm sure she thinks about it, but she refuses to be defined by it. difficult child, I am convinced has rejection issues coupled with a ruminating, introspective personality and frankly, a naturally pessimistic attitude. It's hard for him to make meaningful connections, and he is often on the outside looking in. He's very observant and judgmental and suspicous. He doesn't have a great track record with girlfriends. Add adoption (abandonment, in his mind) to that, and not feeling connected in a tangible way with the people who are his family, and possible biological inclinations toward depression and sub. abuse, and well...he has issues.

    For those of us who have adopted SA difficult children, I'm certain self hate plays a big part in their destructive behaviors. I haven't found a way to break through this, even with therapy, for my difficult child. He has to work things out for himself over time, but the stuff he puts us and himself through is brutal...parenting was never meant to be this HARD.
  13. toughlovin

    toughlovin Guest

    I agree adoption is an issue.... just the numbers say that.. the number of kids in some kind of treatment that are adopted is way higher than the % of adopted kids in the population. I do think adoption is a big issue for my difficult child but I don't think it is the only issue. There are other pieces to the puzzle that is my difficult child. I am hoping he is on his way to figuring that out. I also think Nancy that some people can get sober and then deal with the issues that made them drink and do drugs. I am convinced that will not work with my difficult child. He needs help in parallel.... clearly he can't be drinking or drugging while trying to work out ihs other issues but i also don't think he can stay clean if his other demons are right there. They are too painful, too whatever and so he finds himself just trying to numb the pain.

    And the problem is many treatment programs want you to get sober first which is great if that works for you... but there are a few programs that work on things in parallel... and that is where we are at. Trying to help him with both.

  14. Nancy

    Nancy Well-Known Member Staff Member

    CJ you are inside my head and said exactly what I think. I do believe with all my heart that nature trumps nuture almost always. I also think that if you are born with resilience that goes a long way in counteracting any of the adoption issues that bog down our difficult child's. I know my difficult child was not born with resilience. I know my difficult child always thought she was different even though she had a very large extended family with cousins her age who loved her no matter what her biology was. I too cringe when I hear people talk about how a child looks so much like their parent and I agree there is no malice intended but for our adopted difficult child's it is a huge reminder that they don't know who they look like. With all the talk about how family are those who are there for you as you grow up and love you and take care of you, they still feel they aren't good enough because they were not wanted by their birthparent.

    husband and I have discussed this many times and have not come to a conclusion on what would help. We went so far as to say they should not have adoptions because of the problems. I don't know. I do know I love difficult child as if she came out of my body but I don't think she feels that

    TL we were told in our post adoption seminars that 2/3's of all adoption have some pyschological problems ranging from mild to severe. As if that didn't scare us off, we added substance abuse with the birthparent and were still naive enough to believe we could make a bigger difference than we did.

  15. toughlovin

    toughlovin Guest

    I am not sure I believe that 2/3 number although I do think adoption is a major issue for many kids. I guess I don't believe it because I know a number of adoptive families and my difficult child clearly as the biggest issues... and my easy child is doing great... of course that is not based on anything but personal stories. However the number that I do believe and did get to me was that 1% of the population is adopted, yet in therapeutic boarding schools 30% of the students are adopted. And I know from my alanon parents group that there are a disporportionate # of parents whose kids were adopted. So clearly adoption is a huge issue for kids.... and I dont know why it is a bigger issue for some than for others.

    And I am with you on nature vs nurture. I came to that conclusion when my son was very very young. He came wired difficult.... and by nature was going to be a tougher kid to raise and have a tougher time in life than my easy child. Just plain inborn personality traits. Add whatever trauma happened to him and the substance abuse and he is having a very tough time (and us too).

  16. exhausted

    exhausted Active Member

    Nancy, I am so sorry. She is a mess in so many ways. And you and husband are such good parents. I happen to believe that the mental health issues are huge. If it is a personality disorder, this is years and years of help. I have learned that the pain that goes on in their heads is unbearable. The risk for suicide is more than double. She is doing everything she can to block the reality that is her mental state. All self-destructive, living on the edge behaviors with no regard for her life. Just like my difficult child. I have come to believe the only safe place is residential care, but none of us can afford to do that and there are other harms with "locking" them up. Will she go to a counselor? Will she seek trauma therapy? It's amazing that she was not more scared by the STDs, but as with my kid, I don't know what level of trauma will kick her into the "I need help" mode.

    I personally have really struggled with what enabling is and isn't when our difficult children are so mentally impaired. If they had a more visual disability, noone would question our helping to support them. Adding addiction on top just makes it worse because the 12 step philosophy teaches us to not "enable". I am coming more and more to the place that my daughters BPS is severe and debilitating. She holds on for a few months and then all heck breaks loose. Your difficult child seems to do this as well. As I read more, I realize that the whole notion of enabling is different with such severe mental health issues. What about getting her to voc. rehab?

    I am so sorry and I know your pain, exhaustion, and frustration. ((Hugs))
  17. Nancy

    Nancy Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I'm sure she would not go to counseling because she doesn't see anything wrong with how she is living and we have used all our money on years of counseling so we just cannot afford to do that anymore. husband is at the age where he should be able to start thinking about retiring and that is so far off in the future now because of our expenses with her care that I don't know if he will ever be able to retire until he just isn't able to work anymore. And yes she does seem to do well for a couple months but can never stretch it into a significant length of time. When things start to go well she self destructs.

    I think the reason she is not more fearful of STD's is because it is not in her makeup to think about anything but the present and right now she is fine so she doesn't consider what the future brings, and because consequences have never mattered to her.

    TL I have heard that percentage from several sources and from my experience it is certainly true, but remember they said from minor to severe. Also the percentage of people in jails and foster homes and in the system some way or other is much higher for adoptees is much higher than in the general population.

  18. toughlovin

    toughlovin Guest

    One of the things I have thought and realized for a long time is that if my difficult child had grown up in his bio family or worse yet the foster care system he might not have survived this long. Being raised by us helped him in many ways and gave him more internal resources than he might have had otherwise... however he is still a mess even so.

    I think many many kids have issues from all sorts of things so it is hard to assess how many adoptees have problems, and now much of those problems are related to adoption. I do think though that when you look at the health care systems, jails etc. that a disporportionate # are adoptees... and so adoptions definitely is a big factor.

    What is hard to determine is why that is? Is it because of the psychic pain adoption causes... or is it also the fact that those most likely to be in a situtation of an unplanned pregnancy (especially these days with allt he birth control options) are more likely to be people who are a mess themselves?

  19. dashcat

    dashcat Member

    I read this last night and hoped a good night's sleep followed by aerobic lawn mowing would make it possible for me to conjure up some magic words to send your way.

    But we all know th ere are no magic words for where you are right now with your difficult child.

    Just know you're not alone. I can feel and relate to every single word you've written. And, CJane, you really nailed the complications of the adoption angle. If I didn't know better, I'd think you were sitting in the next booth evesdropping on my lunch conversation with Nancy last week. I, too, have a passle of nieces and nephews who have been touched with a magic wand. Yesterday, i watched my difficult child's face as her cousin (without any intention to cause hurt) talked about applying for nursing jobs in various big and exciting cities. I saw her face as everyone talked about this cousin's graduation from the nursing program at OSU, her brother's experience with the musical theater program at Kent and his upcoming role in summer stock. It is painfully clear that she is different, yet she was raised essentially the same way.

    Nancy, I'm sending you hugs and prayers for peace.

  20. lovemysons

    lovemysons Well-Known Member

    Hopes and prayers that one of these days (soon) difficult child will truly hit bottom and surrender her will to G-ds. I believe she CAN change. I believe there is reason to have hope for her. She is still alive and still "trying" albeit barely at times it seems.

    I know how weary you must feel along this path. But your parenting is not in vain, in my humble opinion. I DO believe at some point...maybe a few more yrs, you will start to see her begin to work with the foundation that you husband and easy child put together for her many yrs ago. These things DO matter...I have seen it with my oldest difficult child who was a TOTAL lost cause (it seemed at the time) 7-8 yrs ago when he was hooked on Meth, stealing from husband's law firm client, selling his car for Meth...Just completely utterly hopeless at the time.
    But today...As husband and I just visited he and his second wife this past Sunday to see our new granddaughter...He lives with high standards...very clean upscale, he was watching, lol, a black and white old movie on the tv. He works extremely hard these days...husband says even harder than husband works now, and he has been sober going on a yr and half.
    There IS hope for these difficult child's. There REALLY is. And this coming from a mom who still has one son in prison...and remember my oldest difficult child ALSO spent time in prison.
    They are not finished yet. I truly believe this.

    Hugs and love,